We decided to ditch the typical ‘do this, then that’ routine of screen capture tutorials and go with something more engaging. Here’s what we focused on. The first thing was the presenters: the only way to give your product character is to have a real person present it. Then the structure: every one of our videos has a clearly outlined benefit in the introduction, followed by a concise tutorial, and a funny punchline to reward the viewer for making it to the end. Finally, the length: all the videos should be about 1 minute long to ensure the best viewer retention.
The production was relatively simple, since we already had all the gear and an in-house videographer (me). Writing the screenplays was fun, especially coming up with the comic bits. We hired a set designer to make the office look more appealing (unfortunately, aesthetics come second to software developers). Probably the biggest challenge was getting the actors. We're based in Serbia, and when people speak English, they usually sound like Russian spies (a big no-no for credibility). Fortunately, we came across two Hollywood-grade actors that made our videos better than we could have ever imagined.
The end results were short, funny, and visually-appealing videos that exceeded all our expectations. Compared to our previous (slightly boring) tutorials, we had a 12% increase in user engagement. The tutorials didn't just teach the users how to use our app, but also communicated our brand identity. Our customers’ reactions were extremely positive. They related to the videos, and they shared their excitement via social networks.