Improve Your Social Conversion Rates: A Beginner's Guide to Social Video

Why do I need video?

You have thousands of fans, but your bottom line hasn't budged. Why? You haven't made a personal connection with your fans and cemented their loyalty to you. People don’t want to be sold to when they are on Facebook. They want to be entertained and make friends.

Video can help you do that at scale by giving your fans a face and a personality to love or hate. Start inspiring your fans to take action today with our Beginner's Guide to Social Video.


Where do I start?

The easiest place to start is with simple interview-style videos such as the one above. All you have to do is take what you would normally say to your customers, look into a camera, and record it in bite sized chunks. The length can be anywhere from 6 seconds to 10 minutes. As long as you keep it energized and engaging, people will watch it all the way through. 

Once you have mastered these, you can start taking extra footage around your office and various locations (known as B-roll) or even buying stock footage and splicing it into your interviews to help explain topics more deeply. This will require editing software and basic post-production skills but you can quickly learn these skills from online tutorials.

Final Cut Pro X Course on

This course is part of a series that looks at documentary editing from the point of view of three different editors in three different editing applications.

The Story & Heart Academy

This is an excellent resource that I personally subscribe to as a filmmaker. It is a great balance of useful/actionable tips and inspiration for projects. On top of that, the community is extremely vibrant and happy to help however they can. 

It is amazing how far some simple videos like this can take your brand when it comes to humanizing your company and truly engaging/converting your audience. Some studies have shown an 86% increase in conversion rates after adding a video to their landing pages.

There are very few things you can do that can have such an extraordinary impact on your bottom line. After reading this guide, there should be no reason you can't start incorporating social videos into your marketing strategy today.



If you want to get even fancier, you can hire an animator or use one of many online services to add motion graphics to your video. This can quickly raise the overall performance of your videos and the perceived quality of your brand. You do need to be prepared with a budget though because the cost can vary greatly from company to company. The cost of animations depends much more on the complexity of the animations rather than the length of the animation.

Advice: If you are going to make an animation, don’t skimp on the budget. Hire a great animator or don’t hire one at all. Better to use very affordable self-service platform than a cheap animator in most cases. 

How to Hire the Right Animation Studio by Wistia

This is an excellent resource to refer to when trying to hire an animation expert for your company. 

DIY Animations with PowToons

PowToons is a great online tool to make your own animations on a budget. 


Gear Guide

Obviously, you will need a bit of gear to make this happen. But don't worry! You don’t need to set up a $50,000 studio just to start engaging your audience.

One of the benefits of these interview style videos is that they don't require much specialized gear. The better the gear, the higher the quality of video of course, but when it comes to social media, it is the content that really matters. For example, a video that was filmed on a phone of one of your coworkers racing their office chair down the hall will likely outperform a 10-minute monotone interview of your recluse accountant filmed on a $10,000 camera.

I've put together 3 packages below to accommodate different levels of quality to match your specific brand. If you are looking for videos above the intermediate level, I highly recommend you contact a professional agency to help you even if it is just to consult on the process and creative side.


Click to Download PDF:

Basic Gear List: Total cost of $295-$490

This list is the absolute bare essentials required to start producing business quality videos. With this list, you could go out to buy the gear and have a video by the end of the day. You aren't buying anything fancy and you won't be producing Hollywood movies but you will be able to start talking directly to your fans.

Basic+ Gear List: Total cost of $1,780

This list is for those of you that want to produce higher quality videos but are still on a tight budget. The tools here will last you for years and are upgradeable which expands their longevity. You won't be at the pro-level yet but the quality of your videos won't be getting in the way of their performance.

Intermediate Gear List: Total cost of $4,890-$6,950

This list is for those of you that want to dip your toes in the entry-pro-level. This is *not* the best of the best gear but it is gear that pros use when they are given a smaller budget. This gear is highly versatile, upgradeable and will last for years. If your brand demands professional quality video then this is where you need to start.

Tip: You will need SD cards with all of these. Do *not* buy a cheap SD card. You will regret it one day when your camera stops recording because the card can't keep up or worse, when your card dies and loses all of your data.


There is a lot of expensive software out there. A lot of it has some really great functionality for intermediate and pros. But if you are just starting out, you could feasibly do the whole process on your phone!

But it is a whole lot easier if you do it on your computer. If you are just starting out, free software such as iMovie on the Mac or Windows Movie Maker can offer you everything you need. 

iMovie Editing Tutorial by

This is a run down of how to do everything you could possibly need with iMovie. There are plenty of other tutorials out there if you do a quick search.


All you really need is to be able to drop in your footage and audio, add in title and end slides and add sub titles whenever necessary. Don't use any of the templates and definitely don't start adding in crazy sound effects. Unless you are purposely trying to be over-the-top. 

If you quickly find yourself outgrowing these editing platforms, most of the pros use either Adobe Premiere or Apple Final Cut Pro X.

Adobe Premier Pro

The best part about Premier is that it integrates perfectly with other Adobe software like After Effects, Illustrator, Photoshop, etc. And if you are familiar with any of these apps then you will quickly learn to navigate Premiere. It is also nice because it works on both Windows and Mac OS X.

Apple Final Cut Pro X

If you work on a mac and are familiar with any of Apple's software, you will quickly understand this interface. It is extremely simple to understand and is even over-simplistic in some cases. So if you are new, this is a great starting point.

For these videos, it shouldn't take you more than 30 minutes to an hour to fully edit and prepare for upload.

For these videos, it shouldn't take you more than 30 minutes to an hour to fully edit and prepare for upload.


Quick Tips

Composition: Put the subject dead center and staring into the camera if your subject is confident and you have script that they have memorized. This direct eye contact with the viewer creates high engagement and encourages the viewer to pay attention.

If you are actually interviewing someone (i.e. not reading a script) or the speaker is uncomfortable with the camera, position them on the 1/3 line and have them look slightly across the camera at you. This won't have as much connection for the viewer but it will be more impactful than someone who keeps looking away from the camera.

Aligning the subject in the center is the simplest composition and offers the most emotional impact because the viewer makes direct eye contact with the subject.

Aligning the subject in the center is the simplest composition and offers the most emotional impact because the viewer makes direct eye contact with the subject.

This composition is optimal for conversational interview styles and for when the subject isn't comfortable looking directly into the camera.

This composition is optimal for conversational interview styles and for when the subject isn't comfortable looking directly into the camera.


Scripted vs Conversational Interview Styles: Use a script as much as possible to make the videos short and packed with information. Cut out every unnecessary line. Be ruthless with 'ums' and 'uhs'. But remember that a more conversational style interview can be much more honest and resonate better with viewers. Just be warned that you will spend much more time editing these to make sure they are succinct and not an hour long.


Multi-camera Interviews: When you are ready to go really crazy, add another camera! When editing, switch between the two cameras during key moments to break up the monotony and keep the viewer engaged. When placing the cameras, keep them within 30 degrees of each other and don't cross the 180 degree line. Cut between the two cameras after key actions like hand movements or head turns. 


Lighting: One of the biggest things that differentiates the pros from the amateurs when it comes to the look of a video is understanding light. Knowing the different moods that are created by different lighting set ups and the most flattering angles can make all the difference. Many people spend their entire careers perfecting this art but lucky for you, there is one simple tip that will help you stand out from the majority of your competition: do *not* mount your light source on your camera. Put the light off to one side and slightly above the subject. This will add depth to your subjects and make them more lifelike.



This guide will help you produce videos that will put you ahead of 80% of your competition because if you are producing anything at all, you are already ahead of most. But if you really want to make the most impact and you want to move fast, contact an agency like us to help you. Producing the videos is the easy part. Coming up with content that reinforces your brand, targeting your ideal customer, promoting through the proper channels and analyzing performance are the hard parts. 

Use this guide to understand how your business could utilize video and when you are ready to get more advanced, you will have a strong platform to launch from.