Video content has taken the internet by storm. Influencers, celebrities, and businesses alike are all tapping into the power of video content to reach their audiences. With platforms like YouTube, Tiktok, Instagram, and Facebook all vying for viewers’ attention with video content, it’s time your firearms business got on board.
The following sections will provide valuable insight into how you can start producing video content to push your brand online. And the good news is that it doesn’t have to be a complex or expensive process. With the right approach, you can create quality video content that gains traction on social media so you can gain more followers and generate qualified leads for your firearms business.
Why Is Quality Video Content Important for the Firearms Industry?
Online video content is here to stay, and it’s only getting more popular. Recent research has shown that 86% of social media users would like more videos from the brands they follow. The vast majority of Instagram and Facebook users are watching videos every day, which shows that video has gone far beyond the realm of YouTube (although YouTube is still one of the best places to post branded content, especially for longform videos).
The same study further revealed that 72% of social media users polled prefer to consume video content over any other type of content, even if they leave their sound off. The data seems to suggest that videos are simply more stimulating and attention-grabbing than words alone or even a single picture showing up in someone’s feed.
This is why your firearms company needs quality video content for your followers to engage with. Low-quality videos that fail to grab viewers’ attention will simply be scrolled past. Quality video content will cause people to stop scrolling and see what you have to offer — even with their sound off. With the right approach to video content, you can stand out from the competition and reach more viewers every day on their favorite social media platforms.
Phones vs. Cameras — Which Should You Use for Producing Video Content?
Phones and cameras are both great options for capturing video content for your firearms business — as long as the phone or camera in question is good enough to capture the quality you’re looking to achieve. Like the process for producing photo content for the firearms industry, the choice of using a camera or a phone is entirely up to you.
Despite both phones and cameras being great options, chances are high that you already have a smartphone but not a dedicated video camera. To help you save a little (or a lot of) money, here are some reasons why you may want to produce video content with your phone instead of a camera:
- Phones have come a long way in terms of quality, matching that of many video cameras available today.
- They easily fit in your pocket, so you have one less “large” item to carry around.
- You probably always have your phone on you, so you can capture video content at a moment’s notice. This is especially great for capturing “organic” content, which showcases the daily life of yourself or your business.
- Many modern video platforms use aspect ratios made specifically for video content captured with a phone.
This may ruffle the feathers of some of the “video camera purists” out there. And they would be right to say that dedicated video cameras have several advantages, especially when it comes to customization and settings. But using a quality smartphone is undoubtedly a great way to get started producing video content for your firearms industry business.
Make Sure You Have Plenty of Storage for Your Videos
Before you start filming that important video shoot, you need to make sure you have enough digital storage space to save your precious files. The last thing you want to do is start filming and realize halfway through that you lack the space required to finish the project. That’s why it’s crucial to ensure you have ample storage space before filming.
Video content is a combination of moving pictures and audio. At extremely high quality settings, this can make even short videos take up a lot of room on your phone, storage card, cloud-based storage system, or hard drive. Go to your phone’s settings to make sure you have plenty of room to spare. You should also do the same for your cloud and computer storage, as it’s a wise decision to upload your files to these locations as a form of backup and for easy sharing with others.
Best Practices for Capturing Excellent Video Content
Do you have a high-quality smartphone with plenty of storage? If so, then you’re ready to start learning how to produce quality video content for your firearms industry business. Here are six tips that you’ll find valuable, whether you’re just getting started or have been capturing video for years.
Vertical vs. Horizontal Orientation
There are times when you’ll want to hold your phone vertically (tall orientation) and other times when it’s best to film horizontally (wide orientation). Here’s a general rule of thumb to help you decide:
- When to film vertically: Film vertically when capturing video content for Tiktok videos, Instagram Reels, Facebook Reels, or YouTube Shorts. These videos are always in the tall orientation to fit the viewers’ entire phone screen. Trying to use a wide-angle video for these mediums can result in zoomed-in, blurry, and generally unattractive results.
- When to film horizontally: Film horizontally when creating more cinematic content that would look great on a computer monitor, television screen, or phone held in horizontal orientation. This is the best orientation to use when creating longform video content that people will watch on YouTube, Rumble, and other streaming platforms.
Choose the Right Resolution
Today’s best smartphones can capture 4k video at 30 or 60 frames per second. Almost all smartphones coming out can capture video at 1080p at 30 or 60 frames per second. These are all extremely acceptable resolutions for professional video content, capturing all the glorious details of that beautiful firearm or accessory. But if you can afford the space — higher resolutions will take up more space, after all — you should go with the highest resolution available on your device.
4k video specifically has the advantage of being able to be zoomed in during post-production while maintaining pristine visual quality. This can be highly beneficial when turning a section of a longform video into a Reel or zooming in to remove an unwanted artifact from the frame.
If you’re running low on storage space or want the convenience of faster uploading later, then 1080p resolution could be the best choice. The lower video quality will lead to smaller file sizes which are easier to manage for you and anyone you’re sharing the video files with.
Use an External Microphone
Your video’s sound quality is extremely important, especially when creating educational and descriptive videos. You could have a video with high-quality image resolution, but if the audio sounds low-quality, viewers may look for a video that provides a better audio-visual experience. With so many companies vying for viewers’ attention online, you need to set yourself apart as a professional who’s willing to take that next step to create quality videos. Using an external mic does just that.
To achieve the best sound quality in your videos, consider using an external microphone. Yes, your smartphone probably has a fairly good microphone built-in, but it may not be the best in every scenario. Consider a video with someone giving instructions on how to use a particular gun. Viewers will want to hear the host clearly; therefore, they should have a dedicated microphone that’s connected to your phone or camera, capturing their spoken word.
Or, say you’re filming a video showing a suppressor’s sound reduction. You can set up a high-quality dynamic microphone (connected to your phone, camera, or audio recorder) rated to handle loud sounds right next to the gun being fired for the most accurate audio results. Your phone or camera may be able to pick up the sound of the gun being fired from where you’re standing, but it won’t be as accurate as using a dedicated, high-quality microphone set up right next to the suppressor.
Pro tip: Add captions to your video during post production. This acts as a fail-safe to ensure viewers can clearly understand what is being said in a video. Captions also increase the video’s value for people who are in a situation where they are unable to turn on the volume or simply choose to keep their volume off when scrolling through their feed. Make sure you edit your captions before posting, especially if you’re using artificial intelligence (AI) to generate them. AI has come a long way, but it still has room for improvement when it comes to caption generation.
Declutter the Area
Proper staging is essential when creating quality video content for your firearms industry business. Viewers want to only see content related to the topic at hand. If the area you’re filming contains unrelated products, competing products, or that afternoon’s lunch wrappers, then you’re lowering the intrinsic quality of your video — even if you’re filming in 4k resolution.
Video content is your company’s way to let your viewers and potential customers into your world. What do you want your world to look like? Do you want viewers to associate your brand with clutter and disorganization, or neatness and professionalism?
Take some time to organize the area being filmed so that only essential, non-distracting items are shown. This will result in more focused videography that your viewers can more easily connect with and understand.
Whether you’re doing a closeup video or filming something from afar, you want to “focus in” on the most important part of the video. If your video is an unboxing of a new product, it would be counterproductive if the box was the clearest part of the frame and the product was blurred out or off-center. The star of the show should always be near the center of the frame and clearly displayed.
When using a smartphone, you can adjust focus by tapping your finger on the screen where you want to achieve the clearest portion of the frame, often blurring out details that are less important. Focusing with a dedicated video camera is a bit more involved with the use of shutter buttons and specialty zoom lenses. Although the process is more involved with cameras, with practice, you can get truly excellent results.
Adjusting and achieving proper focus may take some getting used to, and the “feel” of focusing differs from device to device. Over time, you’ll get better at knowing how to focus your device for the best results.
Get a Second Angle
Want to take your video-capturing setup to the next level? Get yourself a second video-capturing device and tripod to capture video from a second angle. You can also accomplish this with a second videographer, or a third, or a fourth…
The idea is to get more angles of the same content that you can later edit together in your video-editing software. This can make your content more visually interesting and cinematic, which will definitely come in handy for those lengthier videos that include product demonstrations, unboxings, and reviews. Just make sure everyone knows where all the cameras are to avoid having one of the other videographers enter the frame during filming.
When Is the Right Time for Professional Video Content Production?
Producing video content for the firearms industry can be a lot of work, but the results are always worth it. Your followers are hungry for quality videos, from longform YouTube videos to short, punchy Instagram Reels. The question is, do you have the time and resources to meet that demand?
This is where The Coutts Agency comes in. Our team has the skills, experience, and equipment needed to produce high-quality, professional video content for your firearms business. From educational videos and product overviews to demonstrations and more, we’ve helped many firearms businesses grow their brand online and generate leads through video content.