Getting Started with Video Marketing – What, Why and How

October 9, 2018

Sofia Troutman

Sofia Troutman is the Senior Digital Marketing and Product Innovation Manager for Skyline Exhibits. Sofia heads up Skyline’s marketing efforts in new product development and management, lead generation, exhibitor education, industry relations and market research.

We hear it all the time: video marketing is the way to go to help your business grow. Millennials want video. Video is sticky and keeps visitors on your website, helps lower your bounce rate and increase your SEO. So, the question is: how do we get and use video in our marketing programs and trade shows?

One way to afford creating videos for your marketing content is to find as many uses for them as possible. You can create a video for your website and then do minor modifications to it so it can also be used in your trade show exhibit or include a link in your email marketing campaigns.

I interviewed Cathan Murray from our Skyline 360 Group to better understand how and when to use video, when to use Virtual Reality (VR), and key tips on hiring a video professional.

Why Use Video in the First Place?

Video is a relatively inexpensive way to show something that may be impossible to demonstrate using a static image or even in person.  It can enable you to illustrate complex ideas without a big investment.  It is also easy to edit, repurpose and share in a variety of ways.

Video Use at Trade Shows

Video is not always the best solution for your trade show. Sometimes you may be better off with an interactive display in your booth. An interactive display such as a quiz or self-guided photo tour will enable you to gather and distribute a more customized experience for each user. This type of experience may be more difficult to repurpose than a video but could be used in a lobby if the content is not specific to the show.

What is the Best Length for a Video?

It really depends there are situations for everything. Yet some good rules of thumb are:

  • Shorter is better. Two minutes max for a website video.
  • A looping video that you will be showing at a trade show can be up to nine minutes but only in the right situation usually we recommend around two.
  • Promotional video length depends on the topic.
  • It takes about three seconds to capture someone’s attention in a focused piece so getting to the point is important.
  • For a Virtual Reality (VR) video you can create an experience in about 3-4 minutes.

How are Videos for Trade Shows or Social Media Different?

At a trade show, it is harder to do a video with a voice-over due to the noise level. You can email a link to a video with voice-over before the show and then use a shorter version with motion graphic text at the show. It can be an effective way to reinforce the message. Then you can even have a longer version with sound that integrates more detail and lives on your website.

Using video on social media can be tricky, as you must catch people’s attention almost immediately before the viewer scrolls to something else. Videos should be short or better yet use a GIF that links to a video on your website or blog. Also, depending on the platform, subtitles or a no-sound option can be helpful, as many people watch without volume.

What are Some Good Examples for When to Use VR? 

VR is great when you are trying to put someone in a unique setting that is not easily re-creatable on the trade show floor. A good example is if you are wanting someone to explore an environment or large machinery you can create a VR video experience that they can explore in the show.

What are the Advantages of VR in the Trade Show? 

You can create a unique experience for the participant and show your company as cutting edge. It can be an attractive experience that gets more people to come to your booth. It can virtually transport your visitor to a location that helps you communicate your brand message or event theme.

What are Some Disadvantages of Using VR in Your Booth? 

You can attract people who are not really interested in your company but just want to try VR. It can be difficult to get people through the experience without others having to wait in line.

What are Some Effective Tips to Start Using Video Marketing? 

One of the best places to use your videos is on your website. Make sure you place them in a predominant location so they are easy to find and keep people on your website.

If you are going to place your videos on your website, make sure that you hire a professional to shoot your video and even more importantly, to edit your video. According to Cathan Murray from our Skyline 360 creative group, “A good editor can overcome badly shot video, if necessary.”

Make the video concise and to the point. Focus on the highlights and leave out the details. The viewer can always reach out to you with specific questions.

If you are planning to hire a professional, it is helpful to review YouTube and Vimeo examples so you can reference them and share them with potential vendors to help them understand what style you want. If you can send them this information before you even meet it can help them prepare for your meeting.

What Skills Should I Look for in a Videographer? 

  • Standard shooting experience
  • Ability to pilot drones
  • 360-degree shooting experience
  • Ownership of key equipment for the style you want
  • Software: Adobe, Final Cut Pro
  • Camera stabilizers
  • Drones (see what your drone video footage can look like: click here)
  • Industry standard software

What are Some Ideas for Using Video in Promotions?                         

  • Create a microsite or web landing page for your email links with select videos about your products or service. You can also use this for Pay per click promotions.
  • Embed specific graphics in your exhibit that can be used with AR to trigger videos using iPads.
  • Use a Google cardboard player to create content and send to high-end clients.
  • Send a video postcard via standard mail or FedEx as invitations to a key event.
  • At an event or trade show have your staffers share relevant videos to visitors using iPads.

How Should You Decide Whether to Use Video? 

At a trade show: Video is a great way to attract and occupy visitors while staffers are busy, it can also be a great way to showcase products or services you can’t display at the show. Video should not be relied on to be the only way engage clients and find out what they need. It is primarily an attention-grabber or can be used to communicate specific messaging once staffers have identified a need.

On your website: you can use video to show your employee’s and brands’ personality, showcase a client testimonial to increase credibility or show a setting or a product at work. Yet, be careful of long videos, as some people will not have the time or interest to watch. Key information should be communicated outside the video as well.

On social media: you can use prerecorded or live video to communicate more complex messages and to gain attention for longer periods of time. Live video can be especially helpful to create a sense of urgency when broadcasting a limited time event or introducing a new product or service. These videos will also be available on social after the live event and add interest to your social pages.


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Partner Voices
Less than six months ago, Lisa Messina joined the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA) as the first-ever chief sales officer after leading the sales team at Caesars Entertainment. A 12-year Las Vegas resident, Messina is a graduate of Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration and serves on MPI International’s board of directors. TSNN had a chance to catch up with this dynamic leader and talk to her about her vision for the new role, current shifts in the trade show industry, creating more diversity and equity within the organization, and advice to future female leaders. Lisa Messina, Chief Sales Officer, LVCVA With Las Vegas becoming The Greatest Arena on EarthTM, what are some of the things you’re most excited about in your role? Our team was at The Big Game’s handoff ceremony earlier this month, and I couldn’t help but think, “We’re going to crush it next year!”  These high-profile events and venues not only drive excitement, but also provide unmatched opportunities for event planners. Allegiant Stadium hosts events from 10 to 65,000 people and offers on-field experiences. Formula 1 Grand Prix will take place in Las Vegas in November, after the year-one F1 race, the four-story paddock building will be available for buyouts and will also offer daily ride-along experiences that will be available for groups. And, of course, the MSG Sphere officially announced that it will open in September, ahead of schedule, with a U2 residency. It’s going to be the most technologically advanced venue as far as lighting, sound, feel, and even scent, and it will be available for buyouts and next-level sponsorships inside and outside. There’s no ceiling to what you can do when you’re doing events in Las Vegas.  Allegiant Stadium As the trade show and convention business returns to the pre-pandemic levels, what shifts are you noticing and how do you think they will impact the industry going forward? Our trade show organizers are very focused on driving customer experience. Most of our organizers are reporting stronger exhibitor numbers and increased numbers of new exhibitors, with trade shows proving to be almost or above 2019 levels. Now our organizers are really doubling down on driving attendance and focusing on the data to provide that individualized, customized experience to help attendees meet their goals and get the best value. Some companies continue to be cautiously optimistic with their organizational spend when it comes to sending attendees, but I think it will continue to improve. As the U.S. Travel Association makes more progress on the U.S. visa situation, we also expect a growing influx of international attendees. What are some innovative ways the LVCVA helps trade show and convention organizers deliver the most value for their events? We focus on customer experience in the same way that trade show organizers are thinking about it. We got rave reviews with the West Hall Expansion of the Las Vegas Convention Center (LVCC), so over the next two years, we will be renovating the North and the Central halls, which will include not just the same look and feel, but also the digital experiences that can be leveraged for branding and sponsorship opportunities.  Vegas Loop, the underground transportation system designed by The Boring Company, is also a way we have enhanced the customer experience. Vegas Loop at the LVCC has transported more than 900,000 convention attendees across the campus since its 2021 launch. Last summer, Resorts World and The Boring Company opened the first resort stop at the Resorts World Las Vegas , with plans to expand throughout the resort corridor, including downtown Las Vegas, Allegiant Stadium and Harry Reid International Airport. The LVCVA also purchased the Las Vegas Monorail in 2020, the 3.9-mile-long elevated transportation system that connects eight resorts directly to the convention center campus. This is the only rail system in the world that integrates fares directly into show badges and registration. For trade show organizers, these transportation options mean saving time, money and effort when it comes to moving groups from the hotels to LVCC and around the city. Also, the more we can focus on building the infrastructure around the convention center, the more it supports the customer experience and ultimately supports our trade show organizers. Scheduled to debut in Q4, Fontainebleau Las Vegas will offer 3,700 hotel rooms and 550,000 square feet of meeting and convention space next to LVCC.  What are some of the plans for advancing DEI (diversity, equity and inclusion) within your organization? We’re currently partnering with instead of working with a leading consulting firm, to lay the foundation and create a solid DEI plan and be the leader when it comes to DEI initiatives. The heart of that journey with the consulting firm is also talking to our customers about their strategic approaches to DEI and driving innovation in this space.  What are your favorite ways to recharge? My husband and I have an RV and we’re outdoorsy people. So, while we have over 150,000 world-class hotel rooms and renowned restaurants right outside our doorstep, one of my favorite things to do is get out to Red Rock Canyon, the Valley of Fire, and Lake Mead. Five of the top national parks are within a three-hour drive from Las Vegas, so there’s a lot you can do. We love balancing the energy of Las Vegas with nature, and we’re noticing that a lot of attendees add activities off the Strip when they come here.  Valley of Fire What advice would you give to women following leadership paths in destination marketing? I think it’s about being laser-focused on what you want to accomplish; building a team around you that lifts you and helps you achieve your goals; and being humble and realizing that you do it as a group. No one gets this done alone. Thankfully, there are a lot of women in leadership in this organization, in our customers’ organizations, and in this city that we can be really proud of. We’re a formidable force that is making things happen.   This interview has been edited and condensed. This article is exclusively sponsored by the Las Vegas Convention & Visitors Authority. For more information, visit HERE.