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  • Make a Big Impact on Your Landing Page with a Small Budget Video

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    Filming yourself? Awkward, yet cheap. (Image source)

    It seems like almost every respectable, tech-savvy company has a homepage video these days. And while it may be somewhat of a trend, it’s not without good reason. Adding a video to your landing page can produce big results. Like a 64% increase in conversions big. Just ask Neil Patel at Crazy Egg. After adding an explainer video to his homepage, he landed $21,000 in additional monthly revenue. Sure, you might not get quite the same return, but if you haven’t experimented with video yet, shouldn’t you at least be giving video a shot? And if you already have a video, why not try a few variations to see which version performs best?

    crazy egg screenshot
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    I know, I know…video is expensive and time consuming, right? But guess what, it doesn’t have to be! There are plenty of ways to produce conversion-oriented video content on a tight budget. Here are 3 simple ways to get started.

    1. Make a Screencast

    Pros: Great for showcasing a web or mobile app
    Cons: Better suited for tutorials, although marketing-oriented videos are possible
    Time: 6-8 hours
    Cost: $0-350

    If your product or service is a web or app-based, consider starting with a screencast. A screencast is essentially what it sounds like, a video that shows your website or app in action. To give you an idea of what’s possible, here is a screencast I put together a few years ago when I launched Demo Duck.

    It’s simple, but it also had over 2,000 views and generated a lot of leads. The entire video was produced in a simple piece of software called Screenflow (there are a few clips of live action video and animation that I spliced in). If you use a PC, check out Camtasia Studio, or Jing, which is free but less powerful. All 3 pieces of software are extremely intuitive and should only take an hour or two to get up and running.

    I wrote the script myself, but if you need help, try a service like Scripted. For the voiceover, I knew a friend in radio and had him record it at work. You can just as easily record something at home using a decent microphone (like the Yeti from Blue Microphones for $99) in a closet (the clothes help dampen the sound). Or, if you’re looking for a professional, or a specific tone, check out voices.com. A recording there typically runs between $100-300. The icons came from Google images (I mean…I purchased them at iStockphoto) and I found the music for $14 at audiojungle. You can find more music on sites like Tunefruit, License Lab, and Premiumbeat.

    2. Shoot a Live Action Video

    Pros: Get a chance to show off your personality and engage with your audience
    Cons: When done wrong, it can hurt more than it helps
    Time: 5-10 days
    Cost: $100-1,000

    Live action video is great, but it does require some extra planning. First of all, you need to find a location. This could be your office, the local park, or your conference room (for some great tips on how to setup your conference room for a video shoot, check out this video post from Wistia). You also need the right equipment. In the video production world, you can spend tens of thousands of dollars on cameras, lighting, and the like, but for most companies a decent camera and some basic lighting will do the trick. For starters, try using your iPhone and a basic lighting package from Home Depot for less than $100.

    Most importantly, you need talent. This could be you, your boss, or someone you know. It doesn’t matter so long as the person selected can speak with energy and enthusiasm about your business. The last thing you want is a dry, boring, and awkward presentation from a talking head. Here is a live action video we put together in our office a few weeks ago – for a couple of us, it was our first time on camera, but we had fun with it and tried to make it interesting to watch.

    3. Produce an Animated Explainer Video

    Pros: A good explainer video can explain a complex subject in 60-seconds
    Cons: Potentially time and cost intensive
    Time: 4-8 weeks
    Cost: $1,000+

    Animated explainer videos are all the rage these days. However, unless you’re a talented designer and know the ins and outs of a motion graphics program like Adobe After Effects, they can be costly. Most explainer video companies charge between $5,000-15,000 for an animated video (which is well worth it if you can afford it), but if you’re on a budget, there are alternatives.

    For starters, check with your local art or design school. A lot of schools can direct you to graduates, and even current students, with animation and After Effects experience. If you’d rather stick to the professionals, try a crowdsourced marketplace like Video Brewery (full disclosure – I own this website) or Wooshii. They’ll help you generate proposals from video creatives that fit your budget. You can also try video production networks, like 50Grove.


    At this point you should be fresh out of excuses for not creating a landing page video. With the potential to dramatically increase your conversion rates, what’s stopping you? So get going and start producing a video! If you already have one, make a new one and test it. Try something longer, shorter, funnier, or just plain different. Good luck!

    — Andrew Follett


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    About Andrew Follett
    Andrew Follett is the Founder and CEO at Demo Duck and Video Brewery, where he builds handcrafted explainer videos. He lives in Chicago, loves startups, and enjoys traveling. You can find more video tips and tricks on his blog or follow him on Twitter @demoduckvideo.
    » More blog posts by Andrew Follett