The Proofreader's Parlour
A blog for editors, proofreaders and writers
[Note from Louise: the typos in the title are a little joke by A&P! No emails, please!]
Please direct any hate mail about this article to: Andrew and Pete, Bluff House, Middle-of-Nowhere Lane, Fakeshire, FK3 QQX
When Louise asked us to write a guest blog for proofreaders, we thought to ourselves: ‘Proofreaders, they love words, right? Hmm ... we know ... why don’t we write a blog about why they should all stop writing stuff and start creating videos instead?’
WHAT. A. GREAT. IDEA.
Deep breath ...
... here we go.
Should you all start video marketing?
Excusing the dramatics at the start of this article, let’s talk seriously for a moment about why video marketing can’t be ignored when it comes to marketing your proofreading business.
We aren’t saying stop writing, period. We do think blogging should be a key part of your marketing mix, but our aim in this article is to make the case for bringing some elements of video into your content marketing strategy.
Remember, you may like to write, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that’s how all your customers want to consume their content.
Reason number 1: Consumers are switching to video content
With faster internet connection both at home and on mobile, video content has been opened up to the masses, and more and more people are turning to video content over written blogs.
This may be the case for you, too! Think about how many videos you’ve watched online in the past 7 days compared to the amount of blogs you’ve read.
Chances are the former is higher; and if it’s not, you’re in the minority here.
Why is this happening? Well, other than the tech allowing it in the modern world, people are becoming highly trained multi-taskers. We’re used to triple or quadruple screening with our devices – watching TV while checking our phones, scrolling through Facebook on our tablets, and maybe even taking a fourth glance at the smart watches on our wrists.
A lot of the content we’re consuming is video because, actually, it’s less effort. Reading generally requires our full focus on 1 screen.
In fact – especially on social – video is being watched with the sound off more often than with it on! Crazy, right? (Rev.com is your best friend for subtitling, btw.)
So, if we want to get people’s attention, if we want to educate them, entertain them, or even SELL to them, video is the best way to get that all-important attention. At least today, anyway.
Reason number 2: Video builds trust, something that’s lacking
Once we have the attention, the next thing we need is trust.
In 2015, we attended talk by our marketing hero Seth Godin, who painted the picture of the modern business landscape.
He argued that the businesses that are going to win are the ones with attention and trust.
Trust is lacking nowadays. It’s never been easier to start a business – the internet has allowed for that.
We’re sure you’re running a legitimate business, but there’s no denying the number of charlatans out there as well as the people who – let’s be honest – have no clue what they’re doing.
But all you need is a website and BOOM! you’re in business.
Because of this, trust is falling … fast. People don’t really know if you’re an experienced proofreader, if this is your first time at the rodeo, if you’re doing this to put yourself through an English degree, or even whether English is your first language. We have to earn that trust before somebody parts with their cash.
Yes – nice websites can do this, as can client testimonials, a nice logo and an about page that says you’ve been doing this since Andrew and Pete were in diapers.
But if you want to go from being a stranger, or a faceless logo, to earning trust to the extent that somebody will actually hire you, video wins the day.
Why? Because people still trust a friendly face.
Add a face to your brand and you’re getting somewhere. Add a talking face and you’ve hit the money.
Let’s be honest – we need to know, like and trust our proofreader. If we don’t, we might as well check our own stuff.
But if you can show your expertise and let people get to know you through video, you speed up that know–like–trust factor tenfold.
Reason number 3: It can be a more effective way to communicate
Marketing is basically communication.
Whether we’re looking at blogs, home pages, print, sales copy – whatever – we want to communicate a message in the most efficient way possible, and in a way that people remember.
Video allows for that.
Studies have shown that on average people remember 20% of what they see; or 30% of what they hear, BUT A WHOPPING 70% of what they see and hear!
It seems a lot but it makes sense when you think about.
Reason number 4: Social media marketing and video are a match made in heaven
Being a proofreader, you can work from wherever you like, at whatever time you like – whether that’s the cupboard under your stairs or a beach in the Seychelles.
Because of that, you can’t ignore using social media to find clients and network with people all over the world.
The majority of the social networks are pushing users towards video, and because of this they’re giving preference to it in feeds. You’ll see a significant increase in reach online when using video content natively on a platform, compared to links or plain-text updates.
Side note: ‘natively’ means uploading the video direct to that platform, rather than linking to, say, a YouTube video or similar.
The only exception is the classically late-to-the-party LinkedIn, where video can’t be uploaded natively, yet (for the general user at least). We’d place bets on them catching up soon.
Video comes in different formats depending on the platform. Whichever platform you’re focusing on, try adding video into the mix.
Reason number 5: Stand out from the crowd and show your brand personality
Everybody wants their businesses to stand out from the competition, but only a few are willing to take the action to do something different. Video probably isn’t the norm for proofreaders, so it’s therefore a great way to stand out from the crowd and show your brand personality.
We’ve talked about trust and attention already, and this increases tenfold if you show some personality in your business.
We aren’t saying you have to be funny, or crazy, or unprofessional, but rather know what your brand personality is.
By the way, if you aren’t sure what we mean by brand personality, check out Creating a Brand Identity, a video we created ;)
Once you know your brand personality, you have to show it! Yes, you can do this with the written word (we’d like to think this article gets across some of our personality), but oftentimes this can be much easier with video.
So don’t go with the flow. Be different and you’ll get attention.
Using video in your marketing
Okay, hopefully we’ve set the scene for incorporating some video into your marketing. The next thing is getting going with it.
The first thing people tend to jump to is the sales video – the videos for your home page, services page, about page, etc.
This is cool – you can create these to help people through the buying process – but we also want you to use video for content marketing.
Just like you might write blogs to educate, inspire or entertain, make videos for the same purpose. And, importantly, be consistent so that you build your brand awareness over time and max out the 5 reasons we covered earlier in this article.
Remember, just because you’re creating video it doesn’t mean that you can’t write as well. Feel free to embed your videos on your blog and write, too, like we do on the Andew and Pete blog.
Here are 3 main styles of video you could implement:
Thank for reading this article. We hope it’s got you thinking twice about using video. Our own marketing efforts improved significantly when we switched to video. Our only regret was not doing it sooner!
Let us know how you get on, and if you need any help don’t hesitate to ask.
Extra resources (if you want to get started with video)
Written by Andrew and Pete
Andrew and Pete run an award-winning content marketing company called Andrew and Pete, where they help small businesses create share-worthy content that builds brands people love.
They have been featured on Social Media Examiner, Huffington Post and Entrepreneur on Fire, and are the authors of the hit book The Hippo Campus and Content Mavericks, launching Autumn 2017. You can find out more about them at www.andrewandpete.com.
Louise Harnby is a professional proofreader and copyeditor. She curates The Proofreader's Parlour and is the author of several books on business planning and marketing for editors and proofreaders.
Visit her business website at Louise Harnby | Proofreader, say hello on Twitter at @LouiseHarnby, or connect via Facebook and LinkedIn.
If you're an author, you might like to join Louise’s Writing Library. Members receive monthly updates featuring self-publishing news and resources.
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Winner of the Judith Butcher Award 2017 in respect of 'highly visible contributions to the SfEP and its membership'.