Training videos are a great way to teach an audience. This is because they’re time efficient, cost effective and convenient for your team. A successful training video is one that holds an audiences attention and obviously, teaches them something. If your training video can’t hold peoples attention and is unclear or difficult to follow then you run the risk that it will be ignored entirely.
In this post I’m going to share with you my best advice on making a successful training video so this doesn’t happen to you!
Get to the point
You’ve probably read that our attention spans are all getting shorter. It’s true. You have to keep things moving or your audience will zone out. This is where script editing can really make a training video work. Once you’ve written your first draft, try to think of ways you could make it shorter or more to the point. Sometimes it can help to send your script to a colleague for a second opinion. We’ll often make suggestions to our clients if we can see a way of making a script shorter.
If you need inspiration then try spending a few minutes on Facebook. Notice how short all of the videos are? Social media is a ruthless platform when it comes to attention spans. As a result, successful video makers have adapted their style to be as concise as possible. Adopting some of these techniques can certainly help to make a video more watchable. For more tips on script writing for video click here.
Sometimes you just have a lot of information to get across and there’s no way to keep it short. The best solution in this scenario is to break it up. 5 two minute video are a lot easier to digest that one 10 minute video. This is because we get a sense of accomplishment and progress when we finish each video and it feels like less of a time investment. So, think of how you might be able to chapter your content to make shorter videos.
Make it visual
Video needs to be visually interesting. If your training video is just somebody talking to camera then it might as well be a podcast. There’s nothing wrong with somebody talking to camera but breaking it up with other visuals is a big part of keeping peoples attention. Some visual ways to break up your video could be:
• Dot points that appear as the presenter covers the information
• Charts or other supporting graphics
• Animation that demonstrates and supports the topics covered
• Images related to the content
• Video demonstrations
Every training video is different so some of these might not work for your video. Part of our role as a production company is to ensure your final video is successful so if you’re stuck for ideas you needn’t fear, we’re here to help.
A successful training video has good content
Contrary to my first point, if your audience is finding the information in your video genuinely interesting then they’ll keep watching for long periods of time. But how do you make information more interesting? Your delivery can play a big part in this. Try opening a video with a question or some other kind of teaser. This is called opening a loop and it’s an effective technique in writing because it entices curiosity and a need to know more. Also, it pays to write and present for your audience. Research them and make sure what you’re saying is relevant. Think about who will present the video too, will your audience be able to relate to them?
A still from the Effortless Swimming training video we produced.
Good Production value
Having a video that looks and sounds decent is an important part of a successful training video. Sound is very important, anyone speaking needs to be easy to understand. Without a decent microphone and somebody that knows what they’re doing, this can be difficult (read more about that here). If you’re working with a production company, they’ll take care of this for you. Beyond the technical side, there are ways you can help to step up the production value. If you’ll be presenting the information then rehearsing your content is a good idea. If the budget permits, a professional presenter can add a lot to the right video. This comes down to the video though, a highly technical video being presented by somebody with no knowledge of the subject could be less engaging because it will come across as inauthentic .
Over the years I’ve created many training videos for clients. We’ve found that they love using video because it means staff can learn in their own time, without the hassle of coordinating everybody to be at the same place at a specific time. In this regard, they can reduce the strain of having a whole team away for a presentation. But above all, clients love training videos because they’re an effective way of teaching. If you want help producing some training videos for your company then get in contact today.
Ryan Spanger is one of Melbourne’s most respected and sought-after video production professionals. Ryan founded Dream Engine in 2002, and specialises in helping medium to large corporates, government departments, and the non-proﬁt sector to connect with their audience more effectively by using video.