4 Simple Ways to Create Videos

While reading content can feel like work, watching a video is effortless. Videos help you simplify complex information by visually representing concepts and letting your audience passively absorb your message. They’re one of the best ways for brands to engage their audience in ads and social media.

But for many brands, the benefits of video are outweighed by the cost. Production costs are simply too high to justify creating video content. Producing, directing, filming, animating, and editing costs add up fast.

Fortunately, there’s another way to enjoy the benefits of video. Innovative brands today are finding ways to cut production costs by recycling content they already have. (And there are some handy design tools that make this really easy.)

Here are four types of content you can turn into videos for ads, social media posts, YouTube, or to complement specific pages of your website.

1. Blog posts and ebooks

You don’t need to capture original footage to make a video. You don’t even need a narrator. Slideshows can be videos, too.

All you need is a topic your audience is interested in, and some text you can put on slides or overlay on some B-roll footage. If you have a solid topic and some good points to make, you can create compelling videos purely out of stock footage and photos.

That’s why blog posts and ebooks lend themselves so well to video. You’ve already put time and energy into developing the main points you want to make. Now all you have to do is pull them out and find relevant images or B-roll footage. Depending on how long your post or ebook is and how long you want your video to be, you could potentially translate all that content into the video. (Ideally, if you’re going to do this, you probably want a narrator.)

Listicles work especially well for this because the main points are easy to identify and summarize. (Listicles are blog posts or articles built around a list, like 10 Tips for Creating a Church Budget, 7 Tips for Raising Godly Kids, etc.)

And if you’ve already created an infographic to go along with your content, that can work into your video, too—just highlight each section of the infographic long enough to explain and develop its ideas.

2. Webinars and demos

If you use webinars or demos to educate leads and drive them through your marketing funnel, why not record them, so that more people can benefit from your expertise at their convenience? Your sales reps are already trained to talk to your audience in a professional, engaging manner—so put their expertise on display.

You could focus on a popular question people ask during your webinars, or highlight the most compelling thing your product does. You might be able to pull several valuable videos from a single webinar or demo. This can be a great way to drive people either to your product or your lead generation page, where they can sign up for a webinar or demo of their own.

3. Podcasts

Some organizations record video along with the audio for their podcasts. But even if you don’t, your podcast is packed with opportunities to create simple videos. You could focus on a single point, or skip around to find the best summaries of your speaker’s main points. Then add still slides, or if relevant, a screencast, to illustrate the concepts your speaker is discussing.

If you host well-known thought leaders on your podcast, this is a great way to get some more mileage out of that name recognition.

4. Other videos

Chances are, at some point your organization has created some videos. Maybe it was a tutorial of some kind. Or a case study. Or a testimonial. There may be opportunities to recycle these videos to create ads or more shareable content. Again, you just have to find any points worth highlighting.

You already paid the production costs for these videos, and most likely, you haven’t even come close to reaching everyone in your target audience with them. They’re still “new” to people who haven’t seen them. So be sure you get everything you can out of them.

There’s more than one kind of video

Sometimes all you have to work with is some great text. Or audio. Or visuals. You really only need one of those things to make a compelling video. So don’t let a small production budget hold you back from exploring the best ways to engage your audience.