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Creating testimonial videos is a great way to give your business a boost of trust, credibility, and authority. They can often move your prospects from considering you to actually becoming a client or customer. Video testimonials definitely have their advantages, but getting them right is not without its challenges.

Let’s take look at some of the best practices when creating a testimonial video for your business or brand.

1. Choosing the right customer

Woman taken note while talking to another woman

Choosing a great testimonial subject isn’t as easy as choosing a random customer or client. It’s important to choose the right subject for your video testimonials because they will make or break your video content.

The right customer must be:

  • An actual client of yours (ideally, recent active clients) – Someone who fits well with your target audience and can highlight a particular product or service.
  • Someone who is passionate about your business and can tell a great story.
  • A customer that you think will present well in front of the camera.
  • A loyal client that has bought more than one product or service from you (so that your brand or business can be seen as a continuing relationship).

2. Requesting a testimonial

Woman on couch with laptop on a phone call

The best place to start is by asking your customers or clients if they are willing to be featured in a video testimonial. If you have a great relationship with a client already this may be easy, however, if you’re approaching a client you haven’t connected with recently, or is relatively new it can be a little trickier. Sending an email is often the least intrusive way to ask. It’s best to give them plenty of time to respond, this eases the pressure and gives them a chance to consider your request.

It’s important that you make sure your customers understand what to expect from the interview. This way they feel comfortable and prepared for what you are asking them to do.

3. Asking the right questions

Man getting interviewed for corporate video production in front of red background

Once you have your subject onboard, it’s time to prepare the questions you are going to ask them. These questions should be developed to prompt them to tell you their story, from beginning to end. A great way to get an amazing range of responses and keep things interesting is to ask open-ended questions. Also, ask your subject to include the question within their answer so you can avoid using the interviewer’s voice or displaying the questions as text in the final video.

Here are some example questions;

  • What were some of the challenges you faced before working with us?
  • How did that challenge make you feel?
  • What brought you to our business in the first place?
  • How did our product or company help you overcome your challenge?
  • Can you share any specific results?
  • If someone was considering working with our company, what would you tell them?

Questions like these give the foundations to craft a story during the editing process. The clips you capture from your interview are going to form the voice-over for your final video, so it’s important that they work together.

If you haven’t had the chance to get written permission from your subject, it is a good idea to get them to give you permission on camera.

4. Choosing the right location

Man on video production set in warehouse getting interviewed

Choosing the right location for your video is incredibly important. You want to choose a place that makes your testimonial subject feel comfortable, and which reflects well on your brand or business in general.

Some businesses like interviewing their clients at their office, or studio because it adds credibility to the whole process. Other options include having them film at their place of work or home. If your testimonial is for a product, it’s a great idea to include the product in the shot.

You should consider the lighting when choosing a location for your testimonial. Ideally, you want good quality lighting that is going to compliment your subject and the surroundings. It is also a good idea to run the location by your video production company or videographer to make sure it is suitable.

It’s also important that you only use a location that you can access easily, and is large enough to set up lighting, sound, and camera equipment. Speaking of sound, you should check that the location doesn’t have too much noise pollution or reverberation/echo. Poor quality audio can ruin even the best-looking interviews and often distracts the audience.

5. Making your subject feel comfortable

Man getting interviewed in nature in front of video camera

If interviewees are comfortable they generally look better on camera and provide more confident answers. Creating a connection between the interviewer and interviewee is vital to making an engaging video. You need to build trust, so your subject will open up and give you the answers you are looking for.

It’s important that you give your subject the set of questions just before they go on camera so there are no distractions or pauses while they are thinking about what to say. The less time spent looking at pre-written answers, the more natural it will feel.

The best way to help make your subject feel comfortable is by letting them know that they don’t have to memorize any lines or answer perfectly. It is also important to let them know it is fine to make hand gestures if they feel it’s natural. This can help prevent them from looking stiff and anxious.

If you notice your subject is clearly nervous try giving them some unrelated warm-up questions. These questions should be simple, and easy to answer. For example “What did you have for breakfast this morning?” or “What’s your favourite animal and why?”. This will help distract them from their nerves. When they are finished give them the actual question you want to ask and take it from there.

6. Collecting overlay (b-roll) footage

Video production team collecting BRoll footage of talent in bookstore

When you are interviewing your subject, it’s important that you get some B-roll footage. This is any extra footage that might come in useful during the cutting process or can add variety and visual interest to your final video. The footage is also useful to hide jarring edits when you cut questions together or remove mistakes.

You might need some overlay shots such as a wide shot of the subject talking. Other types of B-roll could include:

  • Short clips of their personal workspace, current project/s they are working on at that time, close-up shots of any interesting items lying around on their desk etc.
  • Work being done by professionals related to the interviewee’s answers.
  • Showing the interviewee interacting with equipment, products, or a team member from your company.

It is important to capture the overlay footage after the interview has been completed. This way you ensure that the footage is relevant to the interviewee’s answers.

Conclusion

Video testimonial production is an important part of your video marketing strategy because it helps you to get more clients, and help them form a better emotional connection to your business.

That’s why conducting a great interview with your subject will help you construct a compelling and engaging story that will increase your customer conversions.

If you’re considering using professional video testimonials as part of your marketing campaign, we would love to hear from you. Get in touch with one of our video production team members and book an exploration call today!

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