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Bold Bean Co. has managed to cultivate a fiercely loyal following in an industry where competition is fierce, and consumer preferences are ever-changing. Through a combination of exceptional branding, strategic partnerships, and genuine community engagement, they have set themselves apart from the competition. 

It’s hard to find negative comments about Bold Bean Co. because their community genuinely loves them. This positive sentiment is reflected in the abundance of glowing reviews and enthusiastic social media posts. Their customers aren’t just buyers; they are passionate advocates who actively promote the brand.

So here’s a detailed look from the Small Films team at why Bold Bean Co has earned such a dedicated fan base.

1) They’ve created an instantly recognisable brand

Bold Bean Co has created an instantly recognisable brand that stands out on the shelves. Unlike the typical canned beans, their packaging is vibrant, stylish, and distinctly premium. This strong visual identity makes their products easily identifiable and appealing to both bean enthusiasts and casual consumers alike. By combining a fun, approachable design with a high-end feel, they justify their premium price point in a market dominated by cheaper alternatives.


2) They’re not shy to do Podcast or TV Appearances

Amelia on This Morning

Bold Bean Co. is not shy about making media appearances, and they’ve leveraged platforms like podcasts and television to expand their reach. And could there be a more nerve-wracking appearance to feature on than Dragon’s Den? This exposure not only increased their visibility but also introduced the brand to a whole new audience, creating a fresh cohort of bean enthusiasts.


3) They have a true passion for getting the nation bean-obsessed

Bold Bean Co’s passion for beans is evident in every aspect of their marketing. They are on a mission to get the nation bean-obsessed, and this enthusiasm is contagious. Their dedication to showcasing the versatility and benefits of beans helps to inspire and educate their audience.

4) They share recipes galore

Recognising that many consumers may be unsure how to use beans beyond basic recipes, Bold Bean Co offers a wealth of culinary inspiration. Their website and social media channels are packed with innovative bean recipes that place beans at the heart of the dish. By providing a variety of delicious and creative ways to use their products, they help their customers see beans as a versatile and essential ingredient in their kitchens.


5) They align their products with great chefs

Nigella Lawson and Bold Beans

Bold Bean Co. aligns its products with some of the best chefs in the industry, including Nigella Lawson. Their cookbook features contributions from culinary heavyweights like Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Melissa Hemsley and Anna Jones. These partnerships not only lend credibility to their brand but also generate buzz and excitement. They make sure to highlight these collaborations on their social media channels, reinforcing their status as a premium, high-quality brand.


6) They shout about the nutritional benefits

One of the key aspects of Bold Bean Co’s messaging is the nutritional benefits of beans. They regularly share content that educates their audience on the health advantages of incorporating beans into their diet. This focus on nutrition not only informs but also provides an excellent incentive for health-conscious consumers to choose Bold Bean Co products.


7) They continuously engage with their community

Engagement with their community is a cornerstone of Bold Bean Co’s strategy. They prioritise responding to customer inquiries and feedback, which fosters a sense of connection and loyalty. Beyond simple interactions, they engage their audience with competitions and exclusive content, keeping their community active and involved.


8) They’re clearly passionate about their company culture

man in a stand

Bold Bean Co ensures that they are not seen as a faceless corporation but as a team of passionate individuals. They regularly feature their team in marketing efforts, from welcoming new members to sharing team activities like road trips and cook-alongs.


9) They launched a cookbook

Bold Bean cookbook

Taking their recipe sharing a step further, Bold Bean Co launched a cookbook dedicated to their bean-based creations. The cookbook has received rave reviews and even earned the BBC Radio 4’s The Food Programme Book of the Year 2023 accolade. This move not only provides their customers with a tangible resource but also reinforces their authority in the culinary world.


10) They’ve built connections with other foodie content creators

Bold Bean Co doesn’t limit their collaborations to famous chefs. They also partner with food writers, content creators, and chefs who have engaged online audiences. By sharing and rescheduling recipes from creators like Joe Woodhouse and Kitty Coles, they show their audience that their products are versatile and accessible, inspiring them to try new dishes.


11) They share behind-the-scenes content

Transparency is a significant part of Bold Bean Co’s appeal. They regularly share behind-the-scenes content that gives their audience insight into the inner workings of the company. This approach not only builds trust but also keeps their community informed and excited about future developments.


12) They create excellent teaser content

When launching new products, Bold Bean Co. excels at creating teaser content that builds anticipation. They engage their audience with guessing games and sneak peeks, generating excitement and buzz around new offerings. This strategy keeps their fans eager and involved, driving higher engagement and sales at launch.


13) They shout about their supermarket partnerships

Bold Bean Co has established strong partnerships with major supermarkets like Waitrose and Sainsbury’s. They make sure to publicise these partnerships so their audience knows where to find their products. While they have a robust e-commerce presence, ensuring that customers can easily find their products in physical stores is key to broadening their market reach and boosting sales.


14) They always stay authentic to themselves

Bold Bean Co prides itself on being authentically themselves. They communicate with their audience in a genuine and relatable manner, avoiding corporate jargon and overly polished messages. This authenticity resonates with consumers, who appreciate a brand that speaks honestly and transparently about their products and values.

15) They are committed to sustainability

As a certified B Corp, Bold Bean Co is dedicated to promoting a more sustainable world. They actively work to reduce their environmental impact through eco-friendly packaging, and a commitment to ethical sourcing. This dedication to sustainability attracts environmentally conscious consumers who are looking for brands that align with their values.

16) They further engage with email marketing

Bold Bean Co. effectively uses email marketing to keep its audience engaged and informed. Their newsletters are not just promotional; they provide valuable content, including new recipes, product updates, and behind-the-scenes stories. By delivering relevant and interesting content directly to their customers’ inboxes, they maintain a strong connection with their audience and encourage repeat purchases.

At Small Films, we’re specialists in food and drink content, having created films for brands such as Mackie’s, Lucky Saint, and Charlie Bighams. If you’d like to speak with one of the team about how we can help you tell your story, then do get in contact.

Cutting out the middleman and connecting with your customers directly has become a game-changer for countless brands. Whether it’s a short and snappy TikTok clip or a well-produced YouTube tutorial, video content is ruling the digital landscape. So by leveraging video in your D2C strategy you can help bring your store to your customers’ doors.

Let’s dive right into how you can harness the power of video to supercharge your D2C game.

1. Start with Your Brand Story

First things first, let’s talk about storytelling. Every great video begins with a compelling narrative. Your brand story is the heart and soul of your business. It’s what makes you unique and connects you with your customers on a deeper level.

Create a video that tells your brand story in a captivating way. Share your journey, your values, and your mission. Be authentic and relatable. When customers understand the why behind your brand, they’re more likely to connect and become loyal.

Take the example of TOMS Shoes. They built their entire brand around the story of giving back. Every time a customer buys a pair of TOMS, they know they’re making a positive impact. TOMS’ video marketing has effectively communicated this story, driving both sales and social impact.

The TOMS Brand Story

2. Product Showcases and Demos

Now that you’ve got your customers’ attention with your brand story, it’s time to showcase your products. And videos are the perfect medium for this. 

One of the best examples of this is Apple. Their product launch events are a masterclass in video marketing. They build anticipation, showcase the products in action, and explain how these devices can improve your life. You might not have Apple’s budget, but you can still take inspiration from their approach.

See how Apple do product demo videos

If you’re selling physical products, unboxing videos is a great idea. People love the excitement of opening a new package, and watching someone else do it can be strangely satisfying. Include these videos on your website and social media channels to give potential customers a taste of what it’s like to own your product.

Unboxing from Benefit Cosmetics


3. Tutorials and How-To Videos

Education is a powerful tool in D2C marketing. Create tutorials and how-to videos that demonstrate how your products or services can solve your customers’ problems or improve their lives.

Let’s say you run a skincare brand. You can create videos showcasing the proper skincare routine using your products. Educate your audience about the benefits of each product and how to use them effectively. When customers feel confident in their ability to use your products, they’re more likely to make a purchase.

Tutorials from Coco & Eve

Don’t forget to address common pain points and questions your customers might have. These videos can serve as valuable resources and establish you as an authority in your niche.

4. Customer Testimonials and Reviews

Word of mouth is a potent marketing tool, and video testimonials and reviews can amplify it. Encourage your satisfied customers to share their experiences with your products or services on camera. Authenticity is key here, so let them speak from the heart.

These videos help to humanise your brand and build trust. When potential customers see real people like themselves enjoying your products, it can be a powerful motivator to make a purchase.

Dove customer testimonial


Consider setting up a dedicated section on your website for customer testimonials and reviews. You can also use these videos in your email marketing campaigns and share them on social media to reach a broader audience.

5. Behind-the-Scenes Sneak Peeks

Everyone loves a sneak peek behind the curtain. Pull back the veil and show your customers what goes on behind the scenes of your business. This can include everything from the production process to the daily life of your team.

Sharing these moments helps to make your brand more relatable. It also gives your customers a sense of belonging, like they’re part of an exclusive club. You can create a sense of anticipation and excitement by teasing upcoming products or projects.

Meet the producers with Abel & Cole

For example, if you’re in the fashion industry, show the design process, the selection of fabrics, and the creation of prototypes. Invite your audience to be a part of the journey from concept to creation.

6. Live Q&A Sessions and Webinars

Engagement is the name of the game in D2C marketing. Live video sessions, such as Q&A sessions and webinars, can be incredibly effective in building a connection with your audience.

Use platforms like Facebook Live, Instagram Live, or YouTube Live to interact with your customers in real-time. Encourage them to ask questions and participate in the discussion. This direct interaction not only provides valuable information but also helps to build a community around your brand.

Consider hosting expert webinars related to your industry. For instance, if you sell fitness equipment, you could host webinars on staying fit at home, featuring guest trainers and nutritionists. This positions your brand as an authority and attracts a wider audience.

7. User-Generated Content Campaigns

Harness the power of user-generated content (UGC) to boost your D2C strategy. Encourage your customers to create videos featuring your products or services. This can include unboxing videos, reviews, or creative use of your offerings.

Set up UGC campaigns with incentives like discounts or contests. Share the best UGC on your website and social media channels. Not only does this provide social proof, but it also turns your customers into brand advocates.

A great example of a brand using UGC effectively is GoPro. They’ve built their entire marketing strategy around user-generated content, showcasing the incredible adventures their customers capture with their cameras.

Snowboarding highlights with Travis Rice and GoPro

8. Personalised Video Messaging

Personalisation is the future of marketing, and video can play a big role in this. Use personalised video messages to connect with your customers on a one-to-one level.

You can also use personalised video messages in your email marketing. Instead of a generic text-based email, send a video message that speaks directly to the recipient’s interests and needs.

9. Measure and Optimise

Once you’ve implemented video into your D2C strategy, it’s essential to track its performance. Use analytics tools to measure the reach, engagement, and conversion rates of your videos. Pay attention to which videos are performing well and which may need improvement.

Don’t be afraid to iterate and experiment. Try different types of videos, messaging styles, and platforms to see what resonates best with your audience. The beauty of digital marketing is that you can make real-time adjustments based on data.

If you’d like to speak with an expert about how video can support your D2C strategy, then don’t hesitate to get in touch with one of the team.

Supporting sustainable food brands is one of the best ways to do your bit for the environment. It also makes good commercial sense for businesses to commit to eco-friendly practices: according to a recent survey conducted by IPSOS, more than half of Europeans would be willing to pay more for fossil fuel-free food items, with over three quarters of respondents saying that they would prefer it if food brands included a carbon footprint on their labels.

With that in mind, let’s take a good look at some of the UK’s top sustainable food brands and explore how they have adopted environmentally friendly practices.

1. Tideford Organic Foods

Tideford Organics have produced delicious homemade-style organic soups, meal pots and sauces since the summer of 1996. Based in the heart of South Devon, Tideford is registered with the Soil Association, and it takes its commitment to using only organic ingredients very seriously indeed: their ethos is neatly encapsulated by their mantra: ‘If it’s not organic, it’s not in the pot’.

The UK’s only mainstream provider of organic, plant-only soups, Tideford became a fully vegan business in 2016. This shift was made primarily on environmental grounds after Lynette Sinclair, the Managing Director, and other Tideford employees watched Cowspiracy, a documentary about the environmental impact of large scale meat and dairy production. A fine example of how documentary-style videos can change the world for the better!

2. Mackie’s of Scotland

ice cream carton on a table

A Scottish brand that has produced real dairy ice cream since 1986, Mackie’s of Scotland today manufactures more than 10 million tubs of ice cream every year. Perhaps even more impressive than the scale of its operation is the strength of its commitment to its green resolutions. The company outlined its ambitious vision for the future in 2004, when it declared that it wished to become ‘a Scottish global brand from the greenest company in Britain created by people having fun’.

The company’s eco-friendly credentials are reflected in the various developments that followed at Westertown, where the Mackie family have been farming since 1912. Mackie’s was one of the first companies to install a wind turbine connected to the power grid, having installed a turbine in 1983, and it went on to build four large wind turbines between 2005 and 2015. This was followed by the installation of an impressive 7,000 solar panels in 2015, which made it the largest solar farm in Scotland at the time.

The rate of change at Mackie’s shows no sign of slowing: in 2022, Mackie’s finished building an expansive, super-efficient and low-carbon refrigeration plant on its farm. It looks like Mackie’s ambition of achieving renewable self-sufficiency – and of becoming Britain’s greenest company – may yet be realised.

Take a look at the Facebook ads that we created for Mackies Ice Cream.

3. Original Beans

chocolate on a red background

What could possibly be more tempting than premium-quality chocolate? Premium-quality chocolate that is kind to the planet, of course!

Original Beans was founded in 2008 by Phillipp Kauffmann, an unusual breed of entrepreneur-conservationist. Kauffmann made a compelling moral case for a challenger brand that could radically disrupt the traditional chocolate industry, which is sadly characterised by exploitative supply chains and the ruthless destruction of rainforests, and his novel approach has certainly helped shift the needle in the right direction.

The company’s One4One Trees programme is but one example of the work that it has undertaken to conserve the rainforest cacao. Original Beans have planted 3.5 million trees in the world’s tropical hotspot forests since 2010; this is the equivalent of 10,000 football fields of forests, all of which are managed by communities of local and indigenous people.

It should come as no surprise to learn, then, that Original Beans was ranked as the world’s most sustainable chocolate by the independent Chocolate Scorecard 2023, which gave it the Good Egg 2023 award in recognition of its regenerative approach to producing chocolate.

4. Island Bakery

biscuit cartons on a wooden table

We’re back to Scotland again, and there are yet more sweet treats in store! Island Bakery was established on the Hebridean Isle of Mull by a young couple at the turn of the millennium. It is on this rugged isle that the company continues to produce its wholesome batches of organic biscuits, and it is committed to doing so in an environmentally sustainable manner.

All of the electricity that is consumed by its factory building is generated by a hydroelectric turbine on the nearby Tobermory river and a wind turbine, and the biscuits are prepared in ovens that use wood chips from Mull’s renewable timber plantations. This eco-friendly process also makes for a great-tasting product: the gentle heat generated by this method provides a wonderfully slow bake.

5. Alara Wholefoods

muesli cartons on a black background

It would not be an exaggeration to say that Alara Wholefoods has acted as a trailblazer for the cause of sustainability from its very inception. Founded in 1975 by Alex Smith, an active member of the squatting movement, Alara was one of the first health shops, offering seeds, nuts, flakes, fruits and dried fruit. It went on to become the first cereal company to receive a third-party organic certification through the Soil Association in 1988.

As the company expanded in the years that followed, Alara maintained its commitment to green principles: in August 2008, the company’s King’s Cross factory became the first certified zero-waste food manufacturer in the UK, and Alara began offering its products in plastic-free, home compostable packaging in 2018.

As one might expect, the company uses 100% renewable green energy; it is the first cereal brand on the planet to manufacture net zero carbon food. As such, the company may well have a claim to being the most sustainable food manufacturer on earth – an impressive feat, given its rather inauspicious beginnings.

6. Tilda Rice

5 packets of Tilda rice on a kitchen surface

If you like the sound of tantalisingly fragrant Jasmine and Basmati rice, Tilda might just be the brand for you. The UK’s leading premium rice brand, Tilda is headquartered in Rainham, East London, and it is recognised for producing flavoursome rice characterised by a sticky texture and distinctive floral notes.

The Tilda team have set themselves the goal of being one of the world’s most responsible rice producers. Tilda has recently invested in alternative farming techniques, such as Alternative Wet Drying (AWD), which has been shown to halve greenhouse gas emissions and reduce water and energy usage by 20%. Moving forward, Tilda is committed to using 100% recyclable packaging by 2025 and aims to achieve Net Zero emissions in its manufacturing processes by 2040. Tilda’s 2022 Impact Report provides further information about the company’s exciting long-term aspirations.

We were proud to partner with Tilda recently by helping them highlight their collaboration with the World Food Programme in providing mothers in developing countries with access to nutritious meals. Take a look at our work for Tilda Rice and discover how you can use video storytelling to sell your food and drink brand.

7. Pukka Herbs

Pukka tea boxes on a table

Pukka Herbs was started in 2001 by Sebastian Pole. A keen herbalist and Ayurvedic practitioner, Pole was determined to provide consumers with delicious herbal teas that promote conservation and fair trade.

In addition to offering a fantastic range of organic herbal infusions, Pukka remain steadfast in their commitment to making a positive social and environmental impact. In 2019, Pukka committed to being Net Zero by 2030, and it uses 100% renewable electricity supplied by Energy Garden. Pukka’s tea packaging is also 100% recyclable and plastic-free.

Find out more about Pukka’s commitment to the environment by reading their annual impact reports.

Here’s to a hearty helping of conscious consumerism!

We’re huge fans of food brands that are real, authentic and genuine here at Small Films, and we hope that this has given you a flavour of the various UK-based sustainable food brands that have prioritised their environmental responsibilities. Find out more about our video work for food brands today. 

Small Films is a video production company in London, specialising in food and drink films. Our team of videographers, editors and animators create all sorts of videos, including awesome product videos, testimonial videos, explainer videos and animations that can help bring your brand to life. Do get in touch; we’d love to hear from you!

Are you looking for an effective way to raise capital for your UK startup? Crowdfunding has become a popular choice among entrepreneurs with limited resources and budgets. While creating a crowdfunding video is no easy feat, the investment of time can be worth it if done correctly. In this article, we’ll share six tips that will help improve the odds of having an effective fundraising video made for your business. Regardless of whether you’re using platforms such as Kickstarter or Indiegogo, these guidelines are here to serve as a helpful resource when making a successful crowdfunded pitch video. If you’d like to chat to the Small Films team about support with your crowdfunding video, then do get in touch.

1. Keep it short

Your crowdfunding video should be short and to the point. You want to give potential donors a clear idea of what your project is and why they should support it, but you don’t want to bore them with too much information. Aim for a video that is 2-3 minutes long.

2. Start with a strong hook

You only have a few seconds to grab people’s attention, so make sure your video starts with a strong hook. This could be an emotional story, an interesting statistic, or anything else that will make people want to keep watching.

>> Read our article – Best Crowdfunding Sites for UK Start-Ups

3. Tell a story

People are more likely to donate to a project if they feel emotionally connected to it. So, make sure your video tells a story that will resonate with viewers. Share personal stories, anecdotes, and anything else that will help people understand your project on a personal level.

4. Be genuine

Viewers can tell when someone is being inauthentic, so make sure you come across as genuine in your video. Don’t try to be someone you’re not, and don’t make promises you can’t keep. Just be yourself and let your personality shine through.

5. Keep it professional

While you want your video to be personal and genuine, you also want it to look professional. Use high-quality equipment and editing software, and make sure the final product looks polished and put-together.

>> Read our article – Top 10 Best Crowdfunding Videos

6. Ask for donations at the end

Make sure you include a call-to-action at the end of your video asking viewers to donate to your project. Include a link to your crowdfunding page so viewers can easily donate after watching your video


If you’re looking for a crowdfunding video production company, then Small Films are well versed in creating films that raise the big bucks. We’ve helped numerous companies raise millions of pounds across the years, and we’d love to chat about how we can help you reach your crowdfunding goals.

The eLearning course market is expected to hit $337 billion by 2025. You can see why so many people want a piece of that pie with stats like that. But when you set out to create an eLearning course, how do you ensure you’re nailing the quality and reach you need for successful returns? This handy guide breaks down everything you need to know to build an eLearning course.

Step 1: Dig deep into your objectives

When building an eLearning course, you must drill down into the ‘why’ of what you’re delivering. Why are you setting it up? Why will people choose your course? Think about your target audience, what’s important to them and what they want to gain out of the course. If your course is designed to train employees, then you may want them to feel a certain way about your company. This might be excited, proud, or engaged. Therefore consider how your course will take steps to make them feel this way.

Step 2: Run a competitive analysis

Before setting out to build your course structure, one of the most important things you should do is run a competitive analysis. What’s their price point? What modules are they including? Make sure to check out YouTube, where instructors are giving content for free. What are viewers asking in the comments? What do they want to hear more about? All this data is invaluable for ensuring that you structure the course correctly and stand out from your competitors.

What to look for when analysing competitors

  • What price is their course
  • How long is their eLearning course
  • How many modules are on the course
  • What content are they covering
  • What quality is the footage, i.e. a video production company or home shot footage
  • Do they offer promo codes
  • How are they marketing their eLearning course
  • What is the experience of the instructor
  • How are they building trust signals
  • Do they have a funnel set up

Step 3: Create the course structure

The next step is figuring out how the course will be structured. This is an essential part, as this is what will keep your audience engaged, spread the word about your course, and leave great reviews. Assess how the modules will be structured and what will be covered in each module. Sense check it against your competitor analysis to see whether you’re creating a better flow and content structure than they are.

Step 4: Engage with the right suppliers.

Whilst it might be tempting to shoot the course yourself with a home video camera to keep costs down, it’s always worth instructing a video production company for a more professional look and feel. An experienced video production company will likely have top quality camera kit and the right lighting, plus they’re experts in helping you get the right flow. When it comes to editing the content, a video production company can also help save you hundreds of hours in editing time.

Step 5: Create your script

Whilst you might prefer to go unscripted, it can be a good idea to have a rough form of script to make sure you cover all the critical points along the way. When writing the script, consider where you may be talking to the camera versus animations, visuals or interactive elements.

Step 6: Define your look and feel

Before filming, you want to decide the look and feel of your completed eLearning course. Will you go for a more relaxed background set-up, or is it more formal? What will be the branding of the slides? Are you allowing enough space for subtitles? Are you looking for a corporate, fun, or calming look and feel? Your look and feel will help set the tone for your eLearning course.

Step 7: Start filming.

Once you’ve finalised your eLearning course structure, it’s time to start filming. This is where a video production company can help guide you, ensuring you’re getting the best shots, the content is natural, and you’ve got the right flow.

Step 8: Editing time

Once you’ve shot all your footage, it’s time to edit the content. Here you can remove any inconsistencies and add animation, music, subtitles and interactive elements to engage with the audience.

Step 9: Marketing your eLearning course

You’ve spent hours of hard work creating your eLearning course, but now it’s time to let everyone know about it. It can be easy to assume that because you know every inch of your course back to front, everyone else will. But selling your eLearning course requires a solid marketing strategy to ensure you get the results you want to achieve. There’s a whole host of ways you can market your course, from Facebook ads, organic social media, and SEO blogs to free taster content. This blog from Penceo gives a wealth of ideas for ‘The Most Efficient Ways to Market your E-learning Courses

How to price eLearning courses

When selling an eLearning course, it’s important to think about how you’ll price it. Elearning courses can range enormously in pricing, from free to the thousands. Here are our top tips for knowing how to price your eLearning course.

Tip 1: Size up your competition

Start off by sizing up your competition, understanding what they are offering and for what price. When assessing your competition, read their reviews. This can give key insights into whether those who have taken the course feel it’s overpriced or a bargain. Does the competition have fewer or more modules than yours, is their production more sophisticated, is the teacher more or less experienced, and how long are their courses compared to yours?

Tip 2: Determine your build, launch and ongoing marketing costs

Your eLearning is bound to have a cost associated with the build, whether that’s using a video production company for a polished finish, animators or a video kit. You don’t want to make a loss, so make sure to build these costs into your course price. Once you’ve launched, you also need to factor in ongoing marketing costs to ensure your course gets in front of the right target audience. This might be Facebook Ad costs through to email marketing software subscriptions.

Tip 3: Assess the quality of the content

When pricing your eLearning course, it’s essential to assess the quality and the perceived value. A course with twenty 30-minute modules will be perceived to have more value than a two-hour course. As will a course that has high-quality production involving professional editing, interactive elements and supporting worksheets etc.

Tip 4: Understand the value the course offers

Is your eLearning course a gateway to starting and scaling a brand, helping students to earn £££, or is it an eLearning course to help them learn marketing? Consider what the course gives the student. If it’s elements such as more financial freedom or increased visibility at work leading to job promotions etc. then they will be more willing to spend money on your eLearning course.

Best tools for creating an eLearning course

Canva – Become a graphic designer with this easy-to-use free tool. Canva gives you access to a wide range of templates, helping you to look professional at a fraction of the cost of a designer.

Unsplash, Pexels and Pixabay – Free photography to use in your eLearning course.

Grammarly – Make sure you don’t go to market with a spelling mistake in your course. Check everything using the Grammarly app.

Pixlr – A cheaper, online version of Photoshop, Pixlr helps you edit your imagery.

Google Forms & Survey Monkey – If you want to build in interactive elements in the course, Google Forms or Survey Monkey are a great way to gather responses.

How long should an eLearning course be?

The length of your eLearning course depends entirely on what you teach, your target audience and your planned price point. Some courses may better suit five sessions of 30-minute modules, whereas some could be 20 hours of 20-minute modules. When deciding the length of the course, make sure to assess the length of courses your competitors are offering. And remember that shorter isn’t always better. Depending on the topic, your audience might perceive a longer course to give them more value, whereas people might want shorter bite-sized content in some industries.

How much does it cost to build an eLearning course?

When setting up an eLearning course, the costs can vary significantly depending on the level of production. If you’re shooting with your own camera kit and using free video editing tools, then you can create a course for under £1,000. But if you want a more polished finish and a video production company, your costs will likely sit from around the £5k+ mark, depending on the provider.

Best platforms to host eLearning courses

You can use a whole host of platforms to host your eLearning course, from Udemy to Skillshare. When looking at the platform, consider which best suits your target audience and whether their pricing model works for you. For instance, with Udemy, instructors will receive 37% of the course price, whereas the platform Kajabi offers funnels, landing pages and email marketing for $159 a month.

To see our other recommended platforms check out our 5 Best Platforms for Hosting your ELearning Course Blog.

If you’re looking for support creating video content for your eLearning course, then here at Small Films, we’ve got a wealth of experience. As a video production company in London, we’ve shot films for the likes of EDF and Fiverr, so we know exactly what makes an engaging e-learning course that will stand out from your competitors.

Apple’s software upgrades always introduce a number of tweaks and new features designed to improve upon its existing operating system. The release of iOS 14 represented a particularly significant change in these regards, however, and it remains one of the biggest interface and privacy updates to Apple’s mobile OS.

Let’s take a closer look at iOS 14, before getting to grips with the changes that it brought to the iPhone user experience and examining what it means for marketers looking to publish Facebook ads.

What is the iOS 14 update?

The iOS 14 update was released to the public in September 2020, and it included a number of design changes that enabled users to customise their devices and refined the overall iPhone user experience.

iOS 14 made it easier to add and remove widgets from the Home Screen, and it allowed users to organise their apps using the new App Library feature. Siri also received an eye-catching redesign, and a new app, Translate, was launched as a rival to Google Translate.

Perhaps the most important aspect of the iOS 14 update was its introduction of several privacy-oriented features, such as App Privacy Labels in iOS 14.3 and the App Tracking Transparency (ATT) feature in iOS 14.5. The latter update was rolled out in April 2021, and it required apps to ask users for their permission to share their data and track them across other apps and websites.

These changes were designed to give iPhone users greater control over the data they shared with advertisers and publishers, signalling an important shift in Apple’s data collection and sharing policies.

How does the iOS 14 update affect Facebook ads?

Whilst these changes helped put iPhone users’ minds at rest, they have caused quite a headache for ad publishers and digital marketers. As we shall see, iOS 14 has had a profound effect on ad targeting and reporting.

How has the iOS 14 update affected ad targeting?

The ATT privacy framework introduced by iOS 14.5 requires that apps ask users for their permission to access their Identifier for Advertising (IDFA) tags. IDFA is a unique code that is used by ad marketers to track users and build detailed user profiles that can then be utilised to send targeted ads.

The outlook is not an entirely bleak one for ad publishers in the post-iOS 14 era, however. According to data collected in March 2022, almost half (46%) of iOS users worldwide allow app tracking via the ATT prompt. Marketers may now have much less data about user behaviour, but more iPhone users are choosing to opt in than anticipated. What is more, targeting with Facebook’s user data, i.e. demographics, interests and behaviours, etc. is not impacted by iOS 14, as this is first-party data that Facebook collects on its own platform.

The iOS 14 update has made retargeting site visitors a little trickier, however, as most users are no longer being tracked when they click on Facebook ads that take them to websites and apps owned by other companies. Lookalike Audiences have also suffered because Facebook isn’t able to collect as much data about the people who are buying from different brands.

Users who i) visit your website via an iOS 14 device and ii) have opted out of being tracked cannot be included in retargeting and lookalike audiences. This affects campaigns with the following objectives:

Creating Custom Audiences composed of people who have expressed an interest in your business – whether that’s by watching your Facebook video ads or engaging with your Facebook Page – is one way in which you can continue to retarget users. We would also recommend broadening your existing Custom Audiences by, for example, tracking website visitors over the last 180 days, as opposed to the last 30 days. This will provide a larger source audience, and thus more raw data, for your Lookalike Audiences.

How has the iOS 14 update affected reporting?

Pixel-based conversion reporting has been another casualty of iOS 14, as fewer conversions are being tracked on mobile devices, and real-time reporting is no longer reported. This makes it harder for advertisers to optimise their Facebook ad performance, as they have reduced visibility over the actions that users are taking and thus how well their ad campaigns are performing.

Under Meta’s Aggregated Event Measurement protocol, which aims to help advertisers deal with these issues, advertisers can track up to eight-pixel events or conversions per domain. These eight events are assigned by Facebook, but advertisers can prioritise these events according to which events they regard as most significant.

In the event that a user who has opted out decides to click through to your site via a Facebook ad, Facebook will only report one event – and so it is important that you think carefully when prioritising these events!

Bear in mind that you will need to install a pixel on your website and verify your domain. Find out more about the steps that Meta recommends advertisers take in order to continue to measure web and app events.

Find out more about Facebook ads

We hope that this has helped explain the impact that iOS 14 has had on Facebook ads and that you now feel better placed to deliver personalised, relevant Facebook ads.

Find out more about how you can run successful Facebook video ad campaigns with our best practice guide.

Small Films is a video production company in London. Our team of videographers, editors and animators create all sorts of videos, including awesome product videos, testimonial videos, explainer videos and animations that can help bring your brand to life. Do get in touch; we’d love to hear from you!

Whilst we’ll admit to being a little biased here, we would honestly struggle to think of a better way to promote a product than via the medium of product videos. Making a product video is a highly effective, if not the most effective, way to inform your audience of your product’s merits and persuade them to invest in your brand.

But don’t just take our word for it. 88% of people say that they have been convinced to buy a product or service by watching a brand’s video, according to research conducted by Wyzowl, and data collected by Think with Google indicates that online videos have helped more than half of shoppers to decide which brand or product to buy.

Before you start shooting your miniature masterpiece, however, you’ll need to produce a script that does your product justice. As Alfred Hitchcock famously observed, there are three things that are required in order to make a great film: the script, the script and the script. Putting together a high-quality product video script will enable you to highlight your product’s key selling points and present a strong case to your target market.

Prepare a video brief

Creating videos is often a fun and ultimately very rewarding experience. With that said, making a product video from scratch might sound a little intimidating.

Taking the time to write a video brief can help you to overcome some of the fears and creative blocks that you might have at the outset. It will also provide your project with the structure and guidance that it needs to get off the ground.

Begin with a good old-fashioned brainstorm. You’ll be able to start outlining the form that your video will take if you ask yourself the following questions:

  • Who is your target market?
  • Where would you like your product video to be shown, e.g. YouTube, Facebook, Vimeo, TV, etc.
  • What are your product’s main selling points?
  • What video style would be most appropriate for your product?
  • How do you want your audience to view your product at the end of the video?
  • What is your budget?
  • What is your deadline?

Setting out this information in a clear format will help your team to understand your creative vision, and there are a number of creative briefs that you can download for free to help you on your way. Ideally, you’ll be able to summarise your concept with a snappy logline, e.g.

A down-on-his-luck gardener realises that the only thing that can help him successfully deter hordes of evil slugs from eating his cabbages is copious amounts of copper wire.

Make things easier with script and storyboard templates

Once you have a video brief that you and your team are happy with, it’s time to start drafting your script.

You can choose from a wide range of product video script templates and other online tools that will make the scriptwriting process much easier. Using a script template can help you build upon your original concept and develop it into a story that can act as the foundation of your product video.

The process of scriptwriting is sometimes followed by storyboarding, which involves creating a visual representation of your video and breaking the action into individual panels. There is a wide range of storyboarding software tools that you can use to generate images, and a number of storyboard templates can also be downloaded free of charge, giving you the option to select a template that is best suited to your product video format.

Captivate your audience with a strong opening

We’ve all been there. After having settled down to watch a video on YouTube, you groan inwardly upon realising that you’ll have to sit through yet another set of ads before you can watch the content that you’re really interested in. The only saving grace is that you have the option of skipping them after just five seconds; you won’t have to endure a couple of unskippable 30-second ads.

Every once in a while, however, you’ll find yourself watching past the five-second mark – and perhaps even watch until the very end of the video. Why one might ask, would anyone in their right mind choose to watch somebody attempt to sell their products online?

The answer lies, quite simply, in the hook. Think of the video hook as a magical device that allows you to grab your audience’s attention – even to the point where they’ll happily delay watching whatever it is that they initially came to see for a precious half a minute or so.

Like most magical instruments, the hook can take a number of forms. It can take the form of a question (‘What if you never had to worry about deadlines again?’), an interesting fact, a joke or a direct address to your viewer. Your first task as a product video scriptwriter is to capture your audience’s attention in the first 3-5 seconds of your video – and that means finding a good hook.

The people in charge of marketing Dr. Squatch soap to men have really perfected the art of the hook over the years, as this video demonstrates:

[Dr. Squatch X The Batman™ Collection – Limited Edition] 

We’re still kicking ourselves for not having launched a product video that begins with the words ‘‘Gotham City is riddled with filth’, accompanied by wonderfully foreboding music. This short opening statement, uttered in a declarative tone, combines a pop-culture reference with a dollop of humour. And it works magnificently.

You’ll even find comments that attest to the effectiveness of this approach:

screenshot of comment

Come up with an opening statement that leaves the right impression on your audience, and your chances of capturing their attention to the point where they’ll choose not to hit the skip button will rise dramatically. Even if you have no interest in advertising on YouTube, the same principle should apply: you should aim to capture your audience’s attention within a matter of seconds.

Introduce your viewers to your product

Once you’ve decided upon a good opening, it’s time to introduce your audience to the product and your brand. You may even decide that you’d like to introduce yourself at this point, although we’d advise that you keep your bio short and snappy!

If you intend on making a relatively short video, i.e. a video in the 30-60 second range, a mention of the product itself and some accompanying close-up shots should be more than enough to acquaint your viewers with your offering. Ideally, your product will be introduced as offering a solution to a problem that your viewer might have or as having the potential to make their lives easier.

Observe how the difficulties involved in prospecting and selling are discussed at the beginning of this product demo video, before the ZoomInfo Engage sales tool is introduced as a solution.

[ZoomInfo Engage] 


If, however, you’re inclined to produce a longer-form piece (1-2 minutes), the intro can also serve as a great opportunity to introduce your audience to your brand as well.

In our product video for Everhot, we used the intro section to talk about Everhot’s brand story: namely, Osman Goring’s vision of an environmentally-friendly electric range cooker that could run off the water turbine that he’d installed at Coaley Mill, where Everhot continues to be based.

[Everhot Brand Film] 


Sell your product in the body of your video

The body of your video is where you need to convince your audience of the myriad benefits that your product has to offer. Put simply, it’s time to get selling!

Revisit the key selling points that you identified when working on your video brief. Is there a unique selling point (USP) that sets your product apart from the competition? If so, make this front and centre of your sales pitch, and aim to follow up with 2-3 extra benefits that your product could provide to your users.

The Dollar Shave Club launched its brand with this famous (some might say infamous) promotional video in March 2012, and it’s an absolute masterclass in how this is done.

[ – Our Blades Are F***ing Great] 


Within a couple of days of this video going live, Dollar Shave Club had received more than 10,000 orders. And it’s not hard to see why.

There’s no getting away from the fact that Michael Dubin’s outrageous brand of humour is a huge part of this video’s appeal and perhaps even a selling point in its own right. But once you look past the offbeat tone and hilarious one-liners and instead focus on the substance of this video, it becomes apparent that the case for Dollar Shave Club’s products is presented in a compelling, logical fashion.

Dollar Shave Club’s USP, i.e. razors that are sold at a significantly lower price point than its better-established competitors, is referred to throughout the video, and the body of the video is divided into digestible, 15-second segments in which each of the various features, e.g. stainless steel blades and a pivot head, razors that are delivered to your doorstep, etc. are presented to the viewer. We followed a similar structure in our product videos for Aldi.

The body of your product video is your golden opportunity to go in for the kill and sell your heart out. Just remember that your pitch will be all the more effective if you focus on how the customer could benefit from your product, and address specific pain points that your target market might have. It’s all very well talking about the fabulous features that your product might offer, but you’ll make a much stronger case if you demonstrate how those features can make a real difference to their lives.

Including positive user reviews in the body of your script provides a degree of social proof, and it will help to reinforce the sense that your product is providing something of value.

Inspire action with a clear CTA

Having made your product utterly irresistible to your audience, you now need to translate engagement into action from your viewers!

Whilst this is a relatively straightforward step, it is easily one of the most important; without a clear prompt to take action, you risk confusing your viewers and sending them on an internet scavenger hunt.

Close the deal with a short, clear instruction to do whatever it is that you want them to do – whether that’s to sign up for a custom demo, start a free trial or click through to your website. If your aim is to drive traffic through to your product page, include an end screen call-to-action. A simple command, such as ‘Buy Now’, normally does the trick:

[Google Home: Celebrity] 

Strike the right tone

Once you’ve put together a draft script, it’s highly advised that you read it all aloud to yourself (after having taken a well-earned break, of course!).

Do a table-read in order to finetune the tone and remove the parts of your script that sound too formal or robotic. Don’t be afraid to include words or phrases (gonna, wanna, etc.) that give your video a natural, laid-back feel: a conversational approach is almost always the best approach when making product videos. Write the script according to how you would like the subject of your video to speak.

Finally, avoid marketing buzzwords and complicated jargon like the plague. Keep both your sentences and the words that you use short and sweet – this is a far better way to keep your audience engaged than blathering on about synergy and synchronicity. What you really want to do is infuse your video with the authentic personality of your brand.

Man Crates’ product videos are a good example of how brands can project a masculine voice in a humorous fashion to great effect:

[Wooden Crate Grand Opening] 

It’s time to get writing!

Creating persuasive product videos is a great way to breathe new life into your brand and lay the groundwork for a successful product launch. It also just so happens to be something that we genuinely enjoy doing at Small Films.

If you’re in need of further inspiration, check out the product videos that we have produced over the years, and head on over to our YouTube channel to see all of our latest work.

Small Films is a video production company in London. Our team of videographers, editors and animators create all sorts of videos, including awesome testimonial videos, explainer videos and animations that can help bring your brand to life. Do get in touch; we’d love to hear from you!

More and more businesses are commissioning E-learning video production companies to create their video-based courses – and rightly so. They’re cost-effective, on-demand, engaging, and highly effective at making information stick. But once you’ve created some good training videos, the most important part of how to set up a successful E-learning course is where you put your video content. 

Search on Google, and you’ll find a vast landscape of platforms to build your course on. Each has different features for different needs, ranging from value prices to built-in marketing strategies. Whether your goal is to sell courses as support for your existing business or to train employees – here’s the Small Films pick of five of the best platforms to get you started on finding the right home for your E-learning videos.



If your training videos are for an internal audience, Panopto is the hosting platform for you. Plenty of businesses are digitising employee training. E-learning videos are fast, they’re entertaining, and they eliminate expenses like professional trainers or venues. 

After creating your videos with a training video company and uploading them on Panopto, your employees can watch on-demand, at their own pace. Even after viewing, they can return to key parts whenever they need; Panopto’s “smart chapters” use speech and text recognition to organise content into bite-sized segments. It also enables you to add quizzes and interactive questions alongside your engaging training videos so that the material really sticks. 


  • Easy to use
  • Organisation with Smart Chapters for content review
  • Gamification and interactivity features
  • Analytics and reports
  • Brand customisation


  • No free trial
  • Limited types of questions on the quiz feature




You’ve probably heard the name before– with over 40 million users worldwide, Udemy is the most popular E-learning platform on the web. Because of its wide user base, it’s especially ideal if your goal is to monetise and market your course; on Udemy, your training videos will be exposed to the largest audience possible. With high-quality courses produced by a training video company, your video-based E-learning course will be sure to make sales. 

Instructors can add interactive features, track learners’ progress, extract data, and access insights. Hosting and uploading are free, but Udemy takes a hefty 50% of your revenue. 


  • A wide user base provides the most reach
  • Interactive features
  • Track progress
  • Analytics and insights
  • Marketing promotion plan


  • Udemy takes 50% of your revenue
  • A lot of courses, a lot of competitors
  • No personal branding



Kajabi is a one-stop-shop for businesses whose main goal is to sell their E-learning courses to motivated learners. They take care of all things hosting and marketing: a customizable landing page, analytics, customer payment plans, sales pipelines, and more. 

Despite the buffet of tools, you don’t have to be exceptionally tech-savvy – Kajabi is user-friendly and intuitive, making it easy to set up a course and upload your training videos. It’s priced higher than other platforms, but that’s because of all the internal features you might find yourself having to patch together otherwise. 


  • Customisable branding
  • In-depth analytics and reports
  • Advanced marketing and sales features
  • User-friendly


  • Price is higher than the industry average
  • Learners do not receive certificates
  • No phone support, only chat support





Thinkific is another e-learning platform with a toolkit for both hosting training videos and marketing them. Course building, like with Kajabi, is user-friendly and intuitive. Once you set up a landing page, you can customize it to match your business’ brand. 

The main difference lies in the marketing features: in comparison, Thinkific’s business and sales tools are limited. For the price, however, Thinkafic is a great alternative to Kajabi. It’s the only platform to offer a long-term free option – truly free for as long as you need, no transaction fees, no cut of your revenue. 


  • User friendly
  • Customisable branding
  • Affordable price, free option offered
  • Phone support
  • Third-party integrations


  • No email marketing tool
  • 2 step checkout process
  • No course marketplace to market your course



SAP Litmos


With SAP Litmos, users get a combined learning ecosystem of your training videos and a robust library of courses from other experts. It’s designed to meet the needs of all shapes and sizes of companies and is perfect if you want to blend your custom E-learning videos with videos made by other experts. 

It offers gamification features like leaderboards, achievements, and badges that learners can earn based on retention. You can also customise your branding and use internal content creation tools. However, because of all of the advanced features, the interface may be difficult for first-time course-hosters – it may take some extra time to explore and learn how to maximise everything that SAP Litmos has to offer.


  • Combine your e-learning videos with external courses from other experts
  • Gamification and interactivity features
  • Customisable branding
  • Content creation tools
  • Free trial


  • Not the most user friendly
  • Steep price


If you’ve ever wondered how to make an E-learning course, we can tell you that one of the most essential decisions is what platform you choose to host on. The E-learning space has become an expansive environment with endless options for hosting training videos; the trick is finding one that suits your company’s needs. While the number of choices may be overwhelming, these five picks are some of the best on the web – a great start to picking the right platform, no matter what your goal is.

About Small Films

Small Films is a video production company in London specialising in e-learning videos. We have a team of expert videographers, animators and strategists who are experienced in ensuring your e-learning content hits the mark. If you’d like to speak to one of the team, then do drop us a line

E-learning courses have the potential to be incredibly interesting and effective, but if done wrong, they also have the potential to put your viewers to sleep. If you want to make the most of your training videos, there are many things you can do to make a course that’s as engaging as it is informative. Here are the Small Films team’s top 5 tips to help you create e-learning course content that sticks and won’t have your e-learners nodding off as they view from home. 

Tip #1: Keep your videos concise

The average attention span online is about 8 seconds, which means video duration should definitely be considered when making a training course that keeps learners hooked.

Bite-sized chunks are better for engagement and retention rather than lengthy segments that overload your students with information. 

So, instead of squeezing content into one 30-minute video, break it up into a few shorter ones. Along with being easily digestible, completing multiple short and snappy videos will give learners a better sense of their progress. 

This training series by Canity keeps videos short and to the point to teach viewers sales skills through customer service. 

Watch e-learning course series

List of elearning courses

Watch e-learning course video: How to Speak with Decision Makers. 


Here’s another option…

This training series by Andy Guitar on YouTube teaches beginner guitarists the basics of fingerpicking, using videos all under 5 minutes. 

Display of online course content

Watch e-learning course video: Fingerpicking for beginners 


Tip #2:  Tell a story and demonstrate the application


Telling a story to demonstrate how concepts should be applied will captivate viewers and make your e-learning course content much more memorable. 

Let’s say you’re creating a training video about customer service tactics: 

Imagine listening to a list of facts and instructions on how to handle a difficult customer. Now imagine watching those concepts in action in a scenario where a customer service representative de-escalates the situation. Which would you be more likely to remember? 

You can keep scenarios pretty simple: 2 to 3 characters played by team members or actors, a challenge to solve, and a solution is all you need to tell a meaningful story that will connect with your learners. 


Tip #3: Make it interactive


To encourage active learning, give viewers a chance to put what they’ve learned to the test. Incorporating interactive elements like short quizzes and questions allows them to engage with the content and make sure it sticks. 

You can even add some fun by including gamification features such as leaderboards, badges, and achievements, which are sure to encourage some friendly competition. Game-like elements make digital learning an exciting experience and are great at incentivising people to perform well.


Tip #4: Use a mix of visual media


When creating an E-learning course with a video production company, creative and exciting videos are the ones that will generate the most engagement. Remember, our online attention spans are about eight seconds. That means you should consider entwining high-quality footage with animations, graphics, charts, and graphs to vary what viewers see. 

You don’t want to overload these effects, but you do want to tastefully integrate some of them to make your course a visually interesting experience.

Here are a few examples of training videos with memorable uses of visual features to get you started: 


Watch e-learning video: Unconscious bias test
Watch e-learning video: Back pain educational video
Watch e-learning video: Chuckleheads 


Tip #5: Use high-quality audio


Video-based E-learning has the ability to support not only captivating visuals but enriching audio as well. Using audio means that your videos will engage multiple senses at once. 

If your e-learning course doesn’t already include people speaking on camera, you can use a voiceover to narrate your content– auditory learners will thank you.

Elements like background music and sound effects, while not a necessity, certainly enhance the overall tone and make your video more fun to watch– as long as they fit your content. Background music should be light and instrumental; a “pop” or a “whoosh” sound effect every once and a while should spice things up without distracting from your content. 




The goal of any digital instructor is to share E-learning courses that immerse viewers in the experience and encourage them to actively learn. Training videos are the best way to do just that– the stats say it all. 

Viewers remember 95% of a message when they watch it in a video and only 10% when they read it in text. So if you’re choosing video as the medium for your E-learning course, you’ve already made it halfway to more effective training. But if you want to take full advantage of all of the features you can include for engagement and retention, these 5 tips will make the learning process on your video-based E-learning course simple, effortless, and fun. 


About Small Films

Small Films is a video production company in London that specialises in creating e-learning videos. If you’re looking to create an e-learning course and want to ensure your video content hits the right notes, then give us a bell

It’s no secret that a promotional video is a fantastic way for companies to promote their products and services. As well as helping businesses showcase what they have to offer, promo films are also highly effective at enhancing brand awareness: they’re a great way to introduce viewers to your brand and pique their interest in what you have to offer.

Before we dive into the business of how to create a promotional video that inspires your audience to take action – whether that’s to buy your product, or learn more about your company as a whole – let’s take a look at what the term ‘promotional video’ encompasses.

What is a promotional video

The term ‘
promotional video’, or ‘promo video’, refers to video content marketing that encourages prospective customers to interact with a brand by buying its products and/or services. Promo videos are often used to advertise events, sales periods and marketing initiatives.


And it’s not hard to see why. According to the State of Video Marketing Survey 2022, 86% of video marketers say video has been effective for generating leads, up 2% from 2021.


Here’s how to make a promotional video that inspires action


There’s no question, then, that video marketing is a highly effective medium – and it’s also true to say that video promos are often very fun to produce. A classic win-win.

Without further ado, let’s take a look at how to create a promotional video that can help you achieve your goals.


1. Identify your main objective

red nike top

Before you start devising storyboards and drafting scripts, it is imperative that you take the time to identify your core marketing objective. Are you seeking to maximise sales of one of your best-selling products during a busy sales period, drive traffic to your website, or enhance the profile of an event that you plan on hosting in a few months’ time?


Being able to articulate a clear, singular objective will provide your video with focus and direction. It will also enable you to zero in on your target market and tailor your messaging accordingly.


2. Find a winning concept


This is arguably the hardest, and often the most frustrating, part of the process. The good news is that finding an idea that works is more than half of the battle: with a golden idea and a fair amount of persistence, things will start to fall right into place.


If inspiration is in short supply, ask yourself the following questions:

  • What does your product/service do?
  • Who tends to use your product/service, and why do they buy it?
  • If you’re organising an event, who would be interested in attending, and why? 

Asking these questions will help you address the most important question of them all: what is the best way to appeal to these people?


3. Appeal to your target market


It is at this point that you can start devising scenarios and looking at the sort of imagery that would resonate with your target market. 

If, as in the case of GoPro, your target market happens to be athletes, travellers and photographers in the 18–35 age demographic, a one-minute teaser clip that presents the art of speed flying in all its exhilarating glory will push all of the right buttons.




[GoPro: Epic Lines: Speedflying with Jamie Lee ] 

Generally speaking, you can’t go far wrong if you can come up with a fun, reasonably straightforward way to highlight what your product is capable of doing.

Undertaking this exercise will leave you with a much better idea of which of the different promo video formats would be most effective. Would a teaser-style clip work best, or would you rather opt for a testimonial video, a product demo video or an explainer video

The choice is yours – but think carefully before making it!


4. Decide upon your time parameters


It makes sense to have a rough idea of the length of your promo before you start scripting. Otherwise, you run the risk of producing a video that is overlong and lacking in focus – and having to condense your content into a shorter format is best avoided.

Whilst there is no ‘one size fits all’ approach that we can offer up here, it is true to say that shorter videos are often more effective than longer videos. In an age of declining attention spans, you should aim to provide digestible chunks of information that leave viewers wanting to know more. You’d be surprised by how much you can communicate in just 15 seconds!


[Ember 15 second commercial] 

Take into account your main objective, which we discussed earlier: are you looking to promote a sales period or evoke a strong emotional response? A 15- or 30-second ad should suffice for the former, but a longer-form piece of media might be more appropriate if you wish to achieve the latter. 

Be mindful of where your videos are to be placed. Facebook advises that you aim for a video length of 15 seconds or less, on the grounds that people are more likely to watch such content on their mobile devices until the end, whilst Twitter recommends videos between 6-15 seconds in length. We would recommend opting for longer content, i.e. videos between 30 seconds and two minutes, on YouTube, where people are already in the mindset of watching video content. This is supported by research which has shown that 30-second ads enjoy the highest view-through rate (VTR) on the platform.

Finally, be honest with yourself about what you can produce with the budget at your disposal. A tight budget will necessarily impose constraints on the length of the videos that you can make.


5. Bring your concept to life with a script and storyboard


Once you have a concept and video duration that you and your team are happy with, it’s time to get writing!

Scripting and storyboarding are a critical part of pre-production, as they enable you to map out your video’s vision whilst enabling your crew to better understand how you’d like each scene to appear.

We advise that you use storyboards if your promo aims to tell a story that comprises a number of sections. There is much less need for extensive scripting and storyboarding where raw footage of speedflying, for example, forms the core of your promo.

Once your script is ready, consider using a storyboard to establish a timeline and sketch out your key scenes. If you won’t be directly involved with the filming of your promo, be sure to add directional notes for those producing the video. Don’t feel intimidated if your skills as an illustrator are limited. A great deal of information can be communicated with a combination of basic drawings and written notes, as this tutorial demonstrates.

If, however, this still feels like a lot of work, hiring a video production company might just be your best option.



6. Capture your audience’s attention


It is often said that a book’s opening sentence is its most important. A similar principle applies to promo videos.

A good rule of thumb is that you should aim to hook your audience within the first 5-10 seconds. Look no further than 3M’s promo video for its Command Picture Hanging Strips, which enable customers to hang their art using an easy-to-remove adhesive:

[3M Command Strips – MC Hammer Commercial] 

A great hook is what is required to capture your audience’s attention in a world saturated with video promos of all shapes and sizes – and we can think of few better hooks than the sudden appearance of MC Hammer, followed by him urging a surprised woman to stop hammer time!

The presence of an iconic rapper and dancer turned tech investor is, of course, a big part of the appeal of this promo – but you don’t need a huge budget and a star-studded cast to capture your audience’s attention and leave them wanting to know more.

You can adopt the kinds of techniques used in these big-budget promos to great effect: consider including an element of surprise in your video (it doesn’t necessarily need to take the form of a musician’s head appearing in a toolbox), opening with a joke or using a contrarian approach (perhaps an adapted form of ‘Please, stop hammer time!’) to arouse the curiosity of your viewers. Asking rhetorical questions is another good way to engage your audience and start building a persuasive case.



7. Inspire your viewers to take action


Once your hooks are well and truly into your viewers, it’s time to inspire action.

There are a number of ways in which this can be done, but it can be succinctly described in the following manner: show your audience how their lives could be made easier, happier and/or more interesting if only they were to buy whatever it is that you are selling.

Let’s take one of our promotional videos as an example of how it’s done.

[Moulsford Prep School | Promotional School Video] 

In this video, we opted for a series of action shots in order to do justice to the wide range of activities offered by Moulsford Preparatory School. Footage of children enjoying sporting activities, participating in art classes and playing in an orchestra was used to convey a feeling of energy and enthusiasm, which is reinforced by the uplifting music that plays throughout.

The messaging here is clear: students at Moulsford Prep are happy and keen to learn. Whilst we did not conclude with an explicit call-to-action (CTA), the use of the school’s logo at the very end is there to encourage parents to find out more about what the school has to offer them and their children.

Interested in learning more about creating promotional videos for schools? Read our promo video guide for schools today.



8. Optimise your promotional video for search


Once you’ve gone through all of the hard work involved in storyboarding, shooting and editing, it’s well worth taking the time to optimise your promotional video for search engines with the following pointers:

  • Transcribe your video. This will enable search engines to process everything that is said in your promo, increasing the chances of your video ranking for relevant keywords.


  • Assign your video a title that accurately describes the content of your promo whilst also appealing to your target market. This title should include appropriate keywords, as this will enhance the video’s discoverability.


  • Rather than using a randomly selected freeze-frame image, choose a visually captivating thumbnail for your video, and ensure that any text that is used on it is clear and easy to read on smartphone devices


  • Promote your video via social channels, paid ads, email marketing and your website or company blog


Small Films is a video production company in London. Our team of videographers, editors and animators create all sorts of amazing promo videos, including awesome product videos, testimonial videos, explainer videos and animations that can help bring your brand to life. Do get in touch; we’d love to hear from you!