The world has changed. The way of living for virtually everyone on the globe has shifted fundamentally. While some things will return to the way they were before, we’re confronted with a new normal.

The way we make purchases (and what we buy), the way we work, the way we socialize, learn, and entertain ourselves has become digitized. E-commerce purchases are at an all-time high, we’re signing up for more online learning, we’re adapting to new technologies to catch up with friends, and we’re operating global businesses from our couches. And none of this could be accomplished without a screen.

Among these changes, the way we work has been of the most striking as business closures across Canada began in late March. Many employees find themselves working from home for the first time in their careers, a transition that challenges their productivity, accountability and social satisfaction.

For business owners, the questions are a bit broader.

If you can’t get people into your stores, how do you sell?

If you can’t bring new employees into your office, how do you onboard them?

If you can’t get your employees together in a room, how do you keep them informed and up to date?

How do you celebrate and reward them?

These are the nagging questions that come with our new normal.

As a video production company, we’re always helping businesses find answers to their questions with video. As our world digitizes at an accelerated pace, we’re thinking about how video solutions will shape the way the world does business from now on.

Here are the video trends we see emerging in this brave new world.

1. Sales & Marketing

The way people and companies buy will never be the same. CPG and other retailers who relied on brick-and-mortar interactions with real salespeople are scrambling to find ways to beef up their digital marketing strategy, and fast.

B2B retailers are left with their heads spinning as their annual run of trade shows and exhibitions are cancelled or postponed.

Despite the panic, people are still buying, it just looks a lot different. Ecommerce security and fraud prevention vendor Signifyd Inc found that online sales were about 40% in the US market from May 26 to June 1st of 2020 compared to the pre-pandemic benchmark week of Feb 24 to March 1st.

While B2B sales don’t line up entirely, as businesses start to return to a (new) normal state of operation, we’ll see the numbers climb too.

When consumers on either side don’t have the ability to seek an expert opinion in person, they often look to video to get the information they need to inform their purchases. In fact, 8 of out 10 people have made a purchase after watching a brand’s video online.

When we think of digital marketing, a lot of people still thinking advertising. And while yes, commercials for your products or services will go a long way on social media and other avenues, your video marketing and sales strategy cannot stop there.

Product demo videos, FAQs, unboxings, installations, customer testimonials…the list goes on. Each of these videos provides the viewer with value, whether it’s knowledge, reassurance or entertainment.

To put it simply, think of video as your new virtual sales assistant. Make them informative, persuasive, helpful and human.

2. Recruiting

Recruiting talent is the life blood to every business. You need the best and the brightest, and you need them to find you.

As people start to look for work opportunities post-COVID, many of them will be completing their search almost entirely online. According to LinkedIn, about 60% of candidates looking for new jobs utilize online job boards (alternative forms include social-professional networks and word-of-mouth). With fewer in-person networking opportunities on the horizon, that number will surely grow.

With a younger and more tech friendly workforce on the horizon, video is the way of the future. Recruitment agencies are already reporting 800% more engagement with job ads that have video embedded.

Today’s candidates want to know about the company culture and values of their potential employers. Whether your workforce is going largely remote, or you’re still in an office environment, your company culture is important. Without the perks of foosball tables in the office and Friday happy hours to draw in new hires, the competition for talent will be come competitive.

Building morale and sense of community will be ever more important for attracting talent as we see the shift away from traditional office settings. Your potential hires may never step foot in an office, but you still want to get them excited about the prospect of working for a great team.

Video will help you inject that personality, enthusiasm and sense of pride into your workplace. A recruitment video will explain what the company is about, who works there and why their jobs matter.

3. Onboarding & Orientation

As businesses reopen their doors, invite back laid-off employees and add to their work force after months of stagnation, many of them are opting to skip the office completely and keep people at home. Leading tech companies around the world, including Canada’s own Shopify, are leading the trend towards the new normal of remote work.

From this, we’ll start to see a new trend towards virtual onboarding and orientation and video will be at the centre of it.

7 creatives share their first gig and challenges

Video can allow new hires to meet important people remotely, learn software and technologies and can encapsulate the company culture they’re now a part of.

The benefit of creating video assets instead of hosting virtual onboarding meetings is that new hires can watch on their own time and refer back to points as they come up. It also allows the company to hone in on the brand personality and company values they want to put forward.

Let the new hires meet the leaders of your company. This is a great way to establish rapport early on and show off the dedication and excitement they have for the company. Have them present a welcome message to camera.

Whether you’ve got foosball tables in the breakroom, sit-stand desks or boatloads of natural light, people love to see where they’ll be spending their workday. Give them a cinematic look at the workspace they’ll be in.

Starting a new job comes with a lot of new information and questions can arise long after your orientation. Be sure to include any resources, whether they are web, print or additional video content, and how to access them. This will make your new hires feel confident that they have the tools to succeed.

Define clear expectations for your new hire early on. This can include core company values and things like how you measure success & performance.

4. Communications

Now more than ever, communication is king. Colleagues, families and friends are all finding new ways to connect remotely. But, as many have witnessed firsthand, the virtual tools we’re using to do so are far from perfect.

Since the COVID pandemic forced many companies to operate remotely, popular virtual meeting app Zoom saw a record daily mobile user rate of 4.84 million US customers.

But with background noise, poor image quality and spotty connections can make these interactions awkward. While your day-to-day meetings might do fine, when you have an important message to share, getting your message across clearly is important.

video production in post covid 19 world

Whether you need to make an announcement, share important data or celebrate something great happening at your company, a well thought out video address adds a level of professionalism, thoughtfulness and care that’s hard to come by otherwise.

Pre-recorded video helps you mitigate uncertainty and gives you control over your message.  You can write a script ahead of time and run through your message as many times as needed to get the tone and feeling just right.

It’s also an easy way to incorporate supporting materials like b-roll, infographics, text and photos into your presentation.

It’s also important to consider who is the best fit to deliver your message. 

5. Education and training

As your company evolves, there is an ongoing need to upgrade your employee’s knowledge base and skills, whether it’s new software, updated safety protocols or simply new ways of doing things.

The less often we interact with each other in a physical workplace, the harder it can be to ensure that knowledge upgrade is happening. While online learning has become more and more commonplace, video is almost always in the mix.

If you’ve got a lot of data-heavy information to present, supplement your instructor’s knowledge with additional information in the form of video.

 Training is all about knowledge retention. Try to keep your video content short, concise and to the point. Try discussing the information in the video after each segment for added stick.

Another great retention tactic is to repeat the most important points of your video at the end. This will leave a lasting impression on your viewers.

A new and exciting use for video in training is virtual & augmented reality. When a job is particularly dangerous, virtual reality can be a great way to give employees zero-risk hands-on experience. This aids in reducing pressure, allows for practice outside of the job environment & has been shown to accelerate the learning process.

While flight simulators and combat video games have been to train pilots and military personal for a number of years, we are starting to see virtual reality applications across a number of industries like hospitality, engineering & trades, including some of the world’s largest companies including Microsoft.

6. Events & Recognition

According to Forbes, over 83 million would-be attendees (and counting) were affected by cancelled or postponed events globally. This includes everything from the 2020 Olympics to Burning Man to the Plainville Fire Company Hot Air Balloon Festival.

No matter the size and scope of the events you are accustomed to putting on, whether it’s an annually awards gala for your employees or a billion-dollar global conference, what they look like has changed forever.

While some events outright cancelled and regrouped, others like Microsoft Build and Adobe Summit have gone completely virtual and still managed to retain attendees. How can you do the same?

While live streaming is becoming increasingly popular, pre-recorded video should also be a part of your strategy. It allows you to plan ahead, do the heavy lifting ahead of time and enjoy your time during the event itself.

The greatest advantage of pre-recorded video during a virtual event is that it mitigates risk. It allows you to be concise and clear with your message and ensures that it will be broadcast effectively, despite the dips in viewers’ connectivity or unforeseeable technical difficulties on your end.

Pre-recorded video elements also give you the flexibility of adding additional information in an easy-to-consume way. Infographics, images, charts, graphs and on-screen text can help heighten your viewer’s engagement and allow them to retain more of what is presented to them.

Before you make plans to create pre-recorded event content, make sure you partner with an event video production company who’s done it before and has some insight into what plays well and what doesn’t.

As the saying goes, necessity breeds invention. As the world of work continues to change, the role of video will evolve and change with it.

If you haven’t already implemented video into some or all of these facets of your business, now is a great time to start planning.

We’re here to answer your questions.

Follow Signature Video Group on social media and start your video conversation here.

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Madelaine Sawyers

Author Madelaine Sawyers

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