Youtube is still the No. 2 most popular website in the world (and also the second most popular search engine in the world), so I doubt I need to convince you that video is popular.
And since 2020, video conferencing has obviously become immensely popular. Love or hate Zoom and all the similar alternatives, it would appear that video conferencing is definitely here to stay. (I doubt you need convincing of that either.)
No, the “next big thing” in leveraging video is video messaging. Different from YouTube videos, and different from video conferencing, this is where you record a short video message and send it to a specific person, such as a friend, family member, employee, prospect or client. Sort of like pre-recording a voicemail message and sending it to someone, but now with video.
Like most every other new trend (such as texting), it was first popularized by the younger crowd and is now creeping into mainstream use. And much like texting, video messaging is yet another way to communicate with other people without actually picking up the phone and calling them.
Older folks often think, “Why text when you can just make a phone call?” Well, one reason is because texting has become a very powerful tool in sales and marketing. For example, statistics have demonstrated that fast text responses to website inquiries will close more sales than phone calls alone.
The same is likely to be true for video messaging. It won’t replace phone calls, or Zoom meetings, or face-to-face meeting, but there may be times when it will be the perfect tool for communicating certain things to your prospects and clients.
Now, before you start patting yourself on the back for already adopting video messaging, let me point out that there are three different ways to do video messaging. And in most cases — especially in sales and the swimming pool industry — I’m recommending only one of them.
OPTION ONE – VIDEO OF YOURSELF
This is just you talking to the camera, and possibly pointing to things around you to show the other person something you think is interesting.
PROS: Quick and easy. Personal and intimate. Nice way to stay in touch with family and close friends when you can’t conveniently call them
CONS: Can look and feel a bit selfcentered and cheesy, especially when used in a business situation. (Can you say “selfie?”) It can also feel more tedious and intrusive, when a simple email, text or phone call would have sufficed.
OPTION TWO – SCREEN-SHARING VIDEO
This is you making a recording of something on your computer screen. It could be a pool design, or a website, or a PowerPoint presentation, or anything else you want to share with someone. Typically, you will explain what you are showing them by recording your voice at the same time.
PROS: Great way to show someone how to do something, or show them something new, such as a change in design. Excellent for teaching employees how to handle certain tasks. And you don’t have to “dress up” or wear makeup for a screen-sharing video.
CONS: Much less personal or intimate. Typically less interesting also, compared to a video that shows the person speaking. Audio quality is more important also, since people can’t see your lips moving.
OPTION THREE – VIDEO OF YOU AND YOUR SCREEN
The best of both worlds: This is you talking to the camera at the same time you are showing something on your screen.
PROS: There are several, so let me list them here:
- Much more interesting than either of the other two options.
- Can be as intimate or as businesslike as you want.
- Puts a little less pressure on making each individual part perfect, since you and the screen-sharing are working together and “sharing the load” so to speak.
- Flexible — you can switch back and forth between just showing yourself, or just the screen, or both at the same time.
- Looks more professional.
- Potentially more persuasive. People can tell you spent some time putting this together, so they will tend to pay more attention to it.
CONS: Unlike the other two options, this takes more time and thought to put together.
I’m all about you improving closing ratios, selling more and making as much money as possible. And pool companies that are adopting this technology, and getting comfortable with it, are getting better closing ratios as a result.
So if you want to stay on the cutting edge of client communications and improve your closing ratios, I suggest you take a closer look at video messaging — especially option three, the face and screen-share kind. Just don’t be cheesy or boring!
Brett Lloyd Abbott is the founder and CEO of Pool Builder Marketing LLC, a marketing consulting agency that works exclusively with swimming pool builders, pool service companies, and high-end landscape professionals throughout the world. He is a frequent keynote speaker and leader of workshops and seminars.
This article first appeared in the March 2021 issue of AQUA Magazine — the top resource for retailers, builders and service pros in the pool and spa industry. Subscriptions to the print magazine are free to all industry professionals. Click here to subscribe.