Do you wish you knew what your target audience wanted? They’d also love to know what you want from them. Yes, it sounds like a freaky vicious cycle. But it doesn’t have to be: and all you have to do is come up with a hands-on online video guide.

Creating content that communicates who you are and what you do is sure to elicit the right reaction from the right consumers. It sounds manipulative, but it isn’t about controlling your audience. It’s choosing to engage them in a way that adds value to their lives.

There’s a lot to go over so let’s just jump in;

But if you prefer to watch a video instead, click here:

Why Is Video an Important Part of Marketing?

Gone are the days when word-of-mouth was the only way to create brand awareness. These days, people can simply look up your business online and read the reviews before committing to your services. Consumers could learn everything about your business if they wanted to.

But the truth is a lot of readers simply skim through the information they need at that particular moment.

What does this mean for you?

Video offers the same word-of-mouth effect of door-to-door salesmanship combined with the depth of information associated with reading. Online video, however, has an added touch of convenience _ you don’t have to let a stranger in for coffee or wear your eyes out in the name of reading _ you just have to sit through the presentation.

People can’t skim through videos, you either watch it or you don’t.

You can learn more about the subject in our in-depth article: Why invest in video marketing services?

We all know how tight marketing budgets get, here’s How to make the most of your ad expense.

Online Videos Foster Lasting Engagement

An online video guide offers a different level of engagement as opposed to text and images.

Video allows you to shape the viewer’s perception of the facts. The comprehension of said facts is also immediate, as opposed to when they are flipping through words and pictures.

Video also imposes a timeframe on how viewers consume the information.

The result is an almost automatic emotional response. This reaction usually comes even before the audience can appraise the content.

Let’s have a look at the response timeline when reading an article;

1. The 1st second

They read about a new barbecue grill.

2. The 5th second

The reader actively tries to envision the grill at work.

3. The 10th second

“Hmmm! Would I buy this grill?” the reader wonders as they keep reading.

4. The 15th second

The reader needs to keep reading for a few more minutes before making a decision.

The response timeline when watching an online video guide;

1. The 1st second

“Wow! Look at the chrome on that grill! What a masterpiece.”

2. The 5th second

…and it’s so easy to get that thing started.

3. The 10th second

The viewer drools over the juicy piece of steak in the video guide while wondering why the grill is so affordable.

4. The 15th second

Credit card out. Add to cart!

As you can see, videos allow you to build an immediate emotional connection. But, it could just as quickly turn away potential customers. So, you need to know how to leverage it’s overwhelming influence to your advantage.

Online video guide for freelancers

Types of Online Videos

The first step to creating an effective online video guide is choosing the appropriate type of video. Here’s a brief list to help get things rolling.


Demos are online video guides that show how a product or service works. These include those popular unboxing videos you see on YouTube or simple video tours around a store or office. The goal is to test out your products or services in front of an online audience.

Branding showcases

Such showcases are usually part of a comprehensive ad campaign. They allow you to create a higher level of awareness around your product/service. They can also reinforce your business’ mission statement and vision.

Event coverage

Event coverage videos are the mainstay of event hosting companies. You can also create a presentation for any function your company hosts, such as a conference, gala, fundraiser, or anything else.

Expert panels

Hosting online video interviews with experts and industry influencers can shore up your authority. It doesn’t matter if they share your opinion: it’s enough just to hold a wholesome discussion. Expert panel videos can raise your target audience’s level of trust.

How-to videos/tutorials

How-to videos educate your audience on how your products or services work and how said services are beneficial to their needs. These online videos raise your viewers’ functional understanding of your business and are an effective tool for sales teams.

Animated shorts

Animated online video guides are an effective way to explain challenging concepts. Their strong visuals and the ease in which they can embed text make them perfect for explaining abstract concepts. Besides, they raise engagement without being too preachy.

Motion Graphic Video and How it Connects People.

Client testimonials

A satisfied customer is the best brand ambassador. What all your prospective clients really what to know is how your product or service can change their lives. All it takes is a camera and someone willing to share their experience.

Unplugged videos

Live coverage gives your viewers an all-access pass to your company. The ability to live-stream interviews, product launches, and other events helps to build impactful engagement with your audience. What’s more, they get to ask questions and chat in real-time as the event continues.

AR/VR videos

AR (Augmented Reality) and VR (Virtual Reality) technology add an almost palpable reality layer to digital imaging. An excellent example of this is the IKEA place App. This app allows customers to envision the product in their living rooms by pointing their smartphones to the desired location.

Customized Video Messages

Thanks to AI (Artificial Intelligence), it’s now possible to leverage the data of consumers like never before. You can come up with personalized video messages and deliver them via email or app notifications.

You can now create online video guides that are targeted to specific users.

Streaming Video Online vs. Curating a Collection

To stream online videos or not?

It is a subjective question. It depends on the nature of your enterprise, how you want to connect with your core following, and the targeted customer base.

The global coronavirus pandemic has brought every sector of the economy to its knees. There’s simply no space for close-quarter interaction, which is necessary for many businesses. Online video streaming could be the solution to help maintain some form of normalcy in businesses, learning institutions, concerts, and events.

Video streaming could also be an effective way to reach more customers, even in the aftermath of this pandemic.

With that said, you’ll always need to curate a library of online videos, so learning a few tricks is essential.

A Guide to Online Video Creation

There are a few finer points to creating online videos. We won’t go into most of them. But, these few tips will get the ball rolling. So, grab a piece of paper and your camera. Ready? Here we go.

Plan the shoot

First, establish your key goal. Every choice made as you work on a video always stems from the video’s intended use.

Start with the targeted audience, who are they? What demographic needs the product or service? Such questions will help you profile your target audience and create a video fit for their consumption.

It’s also wise to set up a budget and a timeline at this point. Think of an ideal platform to host the video and establish a deadline for publishing it.

Write a script

Spontaneous moments of cinematic genius are rare. Most of them won’t work for online video guides. Therefore, you need to plan everything out by scripting all that you want to feature in your video.

Here is a succinct guide on how to write a script. 

Acquire the recording equipment

Nothing says amateur quite as loudly as poor quality video and audio. So, you’ll have to acquire the best camera and audio recording equipment you can find. The good news is such equipment is rented out. You could also hire a pro to help you. If all else fails, a quality lighting setup and an iPhone will suffice.

Online video guide for beginners

Hire some talent

Not everyone is photogenic or confident enough to deliver your lines on film. Luckily, there’s a long list of actors and professional voice talent that you can hire. Find one with a trustworthy vibe, a convincing voice, and a winning smile.

Don’t know how to get started hiring talent? We’ve got your covered:

Shoot the video

Once you have all the above components, it’s time to shoot your video. Do a few takes to ensure you have all the right shots, and ensure the lines flow smoothly out of your actor’s mouth. The rest can be perfected during editing.

Log your footage

You’ll need to store and catalog your video so you can ease into the editing process. First, copy all the footage onto an external storage device and name all the files accordingly. This will make it easier for your editor to work on the footage.

Edit it

This is where the real magic happens. Until now, your online video is just a series of clips and sound bytes. Most of them will have bloopers that need to be edited out. So, you (or the editor) will sit down with the script and stitch the story.

How to find the best freelance video editor.

This is the longest and most creatively taxing part of the process. Motion graphics, music, narrations, and other things can be added to embellish the quality of the video. Awaken the creative beast in you, go nuts! And may the intended goal of your online video keep you grounded.

If you don’t have the time or the resources, or you simply want experts to work on your online videos, consult a production agency.

Why a video production company is a silver bullet in digital marketing.

Upload the video

Once all the above is done, it’s time to export your video to the web so your audience can start watching, sharing, and hashtagging it to their heart’s content. This is where the real social engagement starts.

Don’t forget to choose from the best:

Ideal Video Hosting Sites

There are tens to hundreds of hosting platforms where you can host online video guides. Here is a short list of the most popular:


Most people in the world probably don’t know any other video hosting platform. Its registered users make up a third of the world’s population. It’s also the second most used search platform after Google.

Aside from the numbers, YouTube also boasts some of the best features of any video hosting platform. Some of these include live streaming capabilities, playlist generation, and an effective feedback system. You can also seamlessly share videos on social media or via email.


Vimeo has a significantly lower user base compared to YouTube, but many content creators swear by its features. For starters, it has a cleaner user interface, making it easier to navigate. This platform also has fewer ads compared to YouTube and the video streaming quality is higher.

Premium account holders are not only entitled to more storage space, but they can customize the Vimeo player. They also have access to lead generation tools. Vimeo collaborates with creatives to come up with higher quality content.

To Sum It Up

Take a breath.

You’ve just downloaded a lot of information, and there’s more to learn. But it gets easier once you establish what you want and how to get going. Don’t forget to engage your stakeholders at every possible step. It takes a collaborative effort to create excellent online video guides and even more to attain a fan base.

Remember that it doesn’t stop once you’ve uploaded the video. Stay in touch with your audience. Read the comments. Use this feedback to create better videos and a more reliable brand.