“Making a video is easy. If I make a video, then it will go viral and I will have a lot of new business.” This is the common fallacy when making a video because most people don’t understand that making a video is extremely strategic. It is one thing to be creative and another thing to create a video that is not only creative but also strategic in its making.

Think of a video as a car engine that needs maintenance. If you are not a car mechanic (i.e. video professional) then why are you trying and/or believe you know how to fix a car engine (i.e create a video)? Viral videos don’t become viral without a strategy; it takes strategic planning to create a video that resonates with a brand’s followers.

When creating your next video, you need to ask yourself these questions:

  • What does viral mean to you?
  • What is your goal? Is it viewership, click through rate, brand development, etc.? You must understand this because the story told and the market implementation strategy is based on your goals.
  • Why do you think past videos that you have done or stories that you have heard of video implementation, has not worked?
  • What do you believe goes into making a video that is both impactful and brings ROI?

To make a video that is equal parts strategic and creative, you need to take the necessary steps during the pre-production stage.  Take the time to develop your goals, create a script, and decide how your video is going to be distributed. By figuring those steps out before you start filming will ensure a successful video. Don’t make these common mistakes when making your next video.

You don’t have a defined goal

This is one of the most prevalent mistakes when creating a video. If you don’t have a goal in mind when creating your video, your video will have no direction or guidance. In the pre-planning stage, determine what you need to accomplish with your video, whether it’s generating leads, driving traffic, or gathering information from prospects. Build content around these objectives with these goals in mind.

You don’t focus on your target audience

When creating a video, your content must align with some need or problem that your prospects are experiencing and offer a solution to that problem. Better align with your target audience by delivering material on topics that your audience wants to hear more about. By doing so, your video will do a better job in addressing the needs of potential customers.

Your videos are too long

Nowadays, people have shorter attention spans than ever. That being said, keep your videos short and try not to cover too much in such a short amount of time. Try to keep to only one topic per video so you’re giving your audience too much information. If you’re finding yourself going over the set amount of time for your video, create follow up videos on other topics.

You don’t have a solid script

A script doesn’t only give your video direction, but it serves as a framework for how your video is outlined. Writing a script with both verbal and non-verbal cues in the pre-production stage will help you stay on track and keep your video at an appropriate length. Without a script, your mind may wander, leading you in different directions, which can confuse the viewer.

You don’t promote your video properly

So you created an awesome video, but now you need to promote it. Take to the internet to promote your video on social media. Link to it from your website or blog to encourage traffic to your site and encourage your followers to share it. Let your network share your video and let the video content speak for itself. You never know — you might just get a few more followers.

You don’t include a call to action

When people watch your video, they want to know where they can go next. Put a call to action in your video to tell your audience what to do next. Send them to a landing page, download an e-book, or get your viewer’s contact info. Don’t leave your audience to wonder about what the next steps are after viewing your video.

Your video won’t become viral overnight; it takes a lot of strategic planning to make a video that goes viral and meets your business goals. That being said, you need to take time to thoroughly plan out what these are in the pre-production stage. The more you plan your video ahead of time, higher ROI it will receive, the better it will align with your goals, and the more it will resonate with your audience.