YouTube and Facebook: My Most Successful Video
At the 2017 NAMM Show, music retailers had the chance to check out six of the most successful YouTube and Facebook videos from two of their own. John Mlynczak, vice president of sales and marketing for Noteflight, interviewed Mitch Gallagher, editorial director for Sweetwater, and Shane Kinney, owner of Drum Center of Portsmouth. Both music retail panelists have successfully grown their video following on YouTube, Facebook and their websites.
Gallagher currently produces three video shows a week for Sweetwater: “Sound Check,” “Guitars and Gear” and “Sweetwater Minute.” Video content includes gear demos; technology; and artist, engineer and producer interviews. Kinney opened his store in 2009 and started with the simple idea to shoot videos on a shoestring budget.
Mlynczak showcased the six videos that proved to be most effective for each retailer, aiming to inspire others who want to produce videos.
Watch the full session video to see each clip and hear panelists’ comments on how they brought their ideas to life.
1. Welcome Video
Mlynczak: Create a store intro or branding video as one of the first videos you use. Your welcome video should make a customer feel like they could walk in your store and know you. Make sure to be yourself, tell your business story and make your store feel comfortable to entice customers to come in.
Kinney: It sells for you. When you put your video out there, that’s you. It’s been very effective for us. It can be intimidating for someone to walk into a music store, so it’s a good way of disarming yourself. It also makes someone want to buy from you online, because it has a message and vision. It multiplies and multiplies. We seem to do a new welcome video every couple of years, as things change.
2. Artist Interview
Gallagher: Schechter Guitars sponsored [Avenged Sevenfold’s] visit to our store, and we filmed in-store. You bring in a fan base and whole audience that may not have come in the store.
The key in a video is to be relaxed. The viewers pick up on everything immediately. Thank the sponsor and go straight to the artist. The key to doing an interview is that the interview is not about the host. The less you can talk, the better it will be for the viewers. The audience wants to hear what the artists have to say, not what you have to say.
Work products in naturally. Talk to the artists about the music and how they got into it. Many viewers want to be recording artists and tour, so they want to hear how it was done and learn from that. Don’t turn it into a commercial. We want it to be inspiring and motivating, and we hope you’ll get interested in the products the artists play and come to us.
Mlynczak: Don’t wait. Feature employees, people in the community, and start the conversation.
Gallagher: We have done many interviews with employees. Some are artists on the way up or niche artists.
3. Product Video
Mlynczak: There might be a need for a how-to video for certain products. These videos should include an educational aspect, show your store and build credibility.
Kinney: We wanted to recreate the experience of what it’s like to open a new product. So, I videoed myself opening snare drums, talking directly to the camera as I would talk to a customer. We’re the snare drum experts. We get so many emails asking questions about how to set them up, and now I can send a link to the video. I want to do more of these types of videos. Speak to your strengths.
4. “How to Sound Like” Video
Gallagher: This format gives us the ability to talk about product design by putting it into context. Then, the information is valuable, educational, enticing and showcases product use. It started with the idea to recreate the tones of legendary artists by buying re-issued equipment that’s readily available today or using products in inventory. In the process of teaching people about a particular artist, we can also teach them about the gear. We feel an educated customer is going to be a customer that’s more interested in gear. The more they know, the more they’re going to want to look at it and purchase it.
If you’re going to do this kind of video, you have to have a thick skin because you’ll get feedback from people on social media. On YouTube, the comments are anonymous. On Facebook, users are more exposed, and they tend not to be attacks. Beware of copyright infringement. You can’t play the actual songs, but you can use modern gear to achieve the sounds.
Mlynczak: The good news is that people are having a conversation about your video—and they’re having it on your YouTube channel.
5. Product Demo
Kinney: We were able to reach a broader audience, and this is our most-watched video. I knew I could buy a Zoom camera and post a video to YouTube, so the production value is simple and there was no budget. I was just hoping it would inspire others to play. It was filmed in real time in the real setup in our store, so nothing was rigged for the video. This video allows you to just listen, and this approach has been successful. User comments are positive and excited.
6. Product Video
Gallagher: It’s a crowded market as far as products go. How does a customer differentiate and decide what’s best for them? This product-performance video is a more efficient way to step through a complex product. At first, it seems like a guest artist video, but it’s actually a product video—Laura Davidson, product manager from TC Electronic gives an amazing performance. She knows the product and how to use it, so the viewer gets a glimpse of the product with detailed sound quality, and it speaks for itself.
We also do product demos, where we just talk about the product. Our product videos tend to vary. Sometimes, it’s just audio and no talking. We try to apply the best type of presentation to a particular product. The more you can bring it back to what the customer wants to do with it, rather than just looking at a spec sheet, the better it works.
Mlynczak: The types of video that perform better on Facebook are short, bite-sized, less produced with no bumpers. Use subtitles when you can.
Gallagher: We link videos together on Facebook and YouTube and our blog. We pick and choose what goes on Facebook, but everything goes onto YouTube. It’s also on our product pages and blog because of SEO.
Kinney: I look at YouTube as a virtual bookshelf. On Facebook, we’ll copy the link and post it when it’s a highly anticipated product that hasn’t been seen. Or, I’ll post a short, silly video of my dog. It may not translate to a sale, but it’s the human effect.
Gallagher: I sometimes hear a customer say they saw the video and came into our store.
Kinney: I’ll look at the analytics, and I can see where it drops off in views. That helps us refine what we’re going to do and what format works and doesn’t. We don’t look too hard into it.
Gallagher: There’s a lot of trial and error. Having the video is better than not having the video. We try to learn from each video we do.
• Get the message across by playing the instrument or demonstrating the gear.
• Show viewers “how to.”
• No sales pitches.