Every day, we engage with video content in lots of different forms.
As ads; as tutorials on social media; as explainer videos on email newsletters… Usually, these types of videos are marketed to us by companies that have us as their targets; and they’re fantastic as examples of external communications.
But what about internal communications? Can companies benefit from videos for streamlining important messages (instructions, protocols, inductions)?
Of course, they can! Fluid communication is an essential building block for all companies. It doesn’t matter if they’re big or small; every company wants their information flowing seamlessly between team members and departments.
And video can be the key to achieve this: it’s a way for managers and employees to save time and effort while delivering a clear and effective message.
But where to start? Let’s take a look.
Why Use Video?
If you’ve never thought of using video for internal communications, this might be your first question. What’s the benefit of producing a video when you could just write a regular email?
Here are some of the reasons you’ll want to:
They Save Valuable Time
With video content, you can record a message once, and have it delivered to hundreds – even thousands – of employees with just one click. And do so for many years!
This optimizes time – as you won’t have to block everyone’s agendas just to hear your message. But it also ensures that you won’t have to keep repeating yourself in the future! It’s “on tape” and available for everyone to watch how many times they need.
We all know that people work much better when they’re motivated and entertained by what they’re doing. Emails and memos come and go constantly, but entertaining content? That makes people pay attention! Through interesting animation, storytelling, and music, videos can turn any complex concept into something much more appealing.
They Get the Message Across
A lot of educational institutions (universities, schools, and even museums!) are realizing the potential of videos as a teaching aid, especially animated ones.
This is something that companies can leverage as well—using video content on the induction process for new employees or when communicating hard data or sensitive topics.
Awesome acting or animation paired with a great story makes people pay attention.
Choosing Between Animation and Live-Action
There are common misconceptions on both camps. Some businesses make the mistake of thinking that “if a video is going to be shown to employees, it shouldn’t be animated,” on fears of coming across as unprofessional. On the other hand, there are those who think that producing any type of live-action video will be too elaborate and costly.
But take this as they are: misconceptions. In fact, animated videos come in a wide selection of styles — some more formal and some more relaxed. And there are lots of video types that can be made with a reduced budget— not everything has to be at Spielberg-level production!
So, how to choose between these two styles? Well, there is no “one-size-fits-all” style… any professional video company worth its salt will tell you that – just as there’s no one-fits-all video! Each company is unique, and as such, it will need a video that fits its unique values, mission, tone, and message. So, it will vary on a case-by-case basis.
That said, if your message is complex, it can be made simpler by using animated graphics and other visual aid. But if your message needs a “human” touch — like introducing a new employee, congratulating a team on their efforts, or celebrating a milestone, it will benefit from showing a real person speaking.
Choose the one that fits your company (and your message) best!
Which Types of Videos Work Best?
So, different communication goals will benefit to different degrees from different types of videos. But that’s not the same to say there aren’t some styles that have grown fairly popular when it comes to internal communications!
Explaining tasks, processes, and concepts is a common part of their day-to-day of any company. Most times, these explanations need to be repeated to new employees and refreshed every once in a while, to make sure that everyone is on the same page.
That’s why explainer videos are such a useful tool for team instruction and communications! Explainers give you a reliable way to keep all employers and collaborators up-to-date and ensure that everyone understands what they’re being taught.
Take a look at this example by Walmart, in which they explain to their collaborators how to use the supplier management system:
Institutional Videos can help communicate the essence of a company to a new team member or lift the spirits of old collaborators by reminding them of what are the core values of their workplace. These videos can help employees feel inspired and part of a community!
With how-tos and tutorials, you can teach new skills to your employees, ensuring that everyone stays updated and ready to complete their tasks in the best way possible!
The best approach to how-to videos is to avoid creating one long video that includes a lot of information — Instead, create short, bite-sized pieces of content that will help you teach different topics in a way that people can reference separately or come back and revisit later easily. You can even start with material you already have, like templates for internal processes, and then translate them into video form.
Take a look at the way Zoom did it for inspiration!
Internal Communication Videos & Distribution
The way that your company will share these videos will depend on the communication channels you might have available. Some companies have a convenient intra-net for these announcements, while others rely on email chains and similar channels.
However your company does it, make sure the videos are available when and where your team members want to access them. Hosting your videos on a shared platform that they’re familiar with and can check with ease is ideal.
Also, think about accessibility — If you’re using videos for educational purposes, you could create a dedicated shared folder online (using a service like Google Docs or Dropbox) so that everyone can access the material whenever they need it.
Internal communication videos can have a great impact offline as well. Institutional videos work great for starting or ending a meeting, as they communicate the mission and values of the company and will set the right tone for the gathering.
Let’s Wrap It Up!
Implementing video content into your internal process is an excellent way to leave the days of miscommunication behind you – as you get to turn your message – any message – into a piece of compelling and even entertaining content.
And just as your workforce can benefit from a stronger, more effective way of disseminating information, so will your overall company be stronger for it!
So, are you ready to join the club? Then start drafting some ideas on what your next internal communications video can be!