Video and LinkedIn: A Match Made In Business Heaven
I recently came across a recording of an interview I had the pleasure of conducting with SAS founder and CEO James Goodnight from April 2010. And that’s when it hit me: I’ve been recording conversations at conferences for more than a decade, with many of those interviews later represented in this column. I’ve also done a couple of regular video shows, like “CRM Playaz” with the godfather of CRM, Paul Greenberg, and “Watching Amazon” with e-commerce expert John “ColderICE” Lawson.
I’m not a video pro and never set out to be one; I’m just a CRM industry watcher/analyst who wanted to capitalize on the great conversations I was having at important industry events and share them with interested viewers. But over the past couple of years, I find I’m fielding almost as many questions about producing videos as I am about what’s happening in the industry. While I’ve been making videos featuring CRM folks, the CRM folks were more interested in how to use the medium to engage their audiences. So here are my personal tips for people who are getting serious about video, and here’s why LinkedIn should be your platform for sharing it.
MOBILE VIDEO WITH YOUR MOBILE PHONE
It doesn’t take much to get going with video. I have an iPhone X and I use it to do quick videos when an opportunity to interview someone crops up. It can shoot 4K video at up to 60 frames per second, which looks very professional. Although the native sound quality of the iPhone isn’t bad, I improve on it with a Shure MV88 iOS Digital Microphone, which connects to my phone. It’s great for picking up voices speaking directly into the mic while dampening the background noises, but it’s a bit pricey at $139. If I’m doing one-on-one interviews, I use my Movo Lavalier mic set ($40), which also connects to my phone, through the headphone jack. Either way, I can do nice videos quickly on the go.
While my iPhone is good for taking advantage of unexpected opportunities, my Mevo Plus recorder is what I use when I have more time at my disposal. The Mevo can create multiple views from its single lens, giving your video the appearance of having multiple cameras shooting from a number of angles. This sets your videos apart from the single-view look you get from phones. The Mevo Plus isn’t cheap; it costs about $399, and I use it with the Mevo Boost accessory (an additional cost of $329 as part of a bundle), which gives the camera a 10-hour battery life and the ability to stream in 4K video.
LINKEDIN AS A VIDEO PLATFORM
My videos are focused on CRM-related topics and skew toward B2B subjects. I didn’t get many views at all when I uploaded to YouTube or Facebook, or even when live streaming to Facebook Live. But posting videos natively to my LinkedIn profile has really helped from a visibility standpoint. You can directly post videos up to 10 minutes long to LinkedIn. When I started doing this consistently at the beginning of 2019, the number of people viewing my videos really took off, with some videos capturing 13,000 views in a week’s time. And because the LinkedIn audience is more business-centric, the right kind of folks were seeing my videos, which led to some paid engagements to do interviews and to moderate industry panels. And while most of my videos are longer than 10 minutes, I found that posting short clips on LinkedIn with links to the full video on YouTube has driven up views there as well.
I mentioned above I didn’t get much traction with Facebook Live. But since last summer I’ve been on LinkedIn’s live streaming beta program (LinkedIn Live), which notifies your connections that you are “going live.” And because your LinkedIn connections are folks you know or who share your business interests, it’s great for real-time engagement. When LinkedIn Live opens up to the public, it could become the Netflix of business video content.
These are just a few of the things I’ve picked up over the years. You can jump in with video inexpensively. You don’t need elaborate production. It’s all about quality, consistency, and findability. And LinkedIn can help you with that last one.
Brent Leary is cofounder of CRM Essentials, an Atlanta-based advisory firm focused on small and midsize businesses. He is also the author of Barack 2.0: Social Media Lessons for Small Businesses.
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