Releasing The Power of Product Demonstration Videos

Published on March 25, 2011 in Best Practices | No Comments

Characteristics and Uses of Great Product Demonstration Videos


A product demonstration video is typically a sales tool that quickly and succinctly shows target customers the features and functions of a product, with the intent of inspiring them to buy. It shows the features and functions of a product in order to make clear the value or benefits that the customer will get when they purchase or use the product. But, the product demonstration video has many other applications. They are effective tools for:

  • Quickly educating or reminding the sales team on how to present the product to potential customers.
  • Potential investors to understand the capabilities of a company’s products.
  • Keeping team members across the organization informed and aware of their products.
  • Keeping suppliers or potential suppliers informed and aware of the company’s products.
  • Ensuring that everyone gets a consistent product message.


The key to a successful product demonstration is structuring the demo to address the specific areas of interest of your target customers. Our observations suggest that effective product demonstration videos include the following:

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1. Identify the Market Segment.

  • What market segment(s) is your product targeting?

    • Who is the typical buyer or user of this product?
    • What demographic, industry group, location, income bracket, lifestyle, etc.?

2. Explain the Market Need or Problem.

  • What customer issue(s) is this product designed to satisfy?

    • Are there specific problems that it addresses?
    • Is there a desire or need that the customer has that the product satisfies?
    • Does it appeal to a higher purpose or calling that a customer may aspire to achieve?
    • Does it provide improved performance measures (e.g., lower cost, easier maintenance, etc.)

3. Tell the Value Proposition or Unique Selling Proposition.

  • What does the customer get that is valuable to him or her?

    • In one or two sentences, use your Value Proposition and/or your Unique Selling Proposition to help articulate the value that the customer is getting when they buy your product.
      • Value Proposition – concise statement that tells a customer that if they buy a particular product, they will get specific benefits.
      • Unique Selling Proposition – concise statement explaining why a particular product is better than others at addressing the needs of the customer and therefore, making a compelling reason to purchase the product.

4. Focus on Customer Purchase Criteria.

  • What specific needs and wants will the target customer seek as they evaluate your product and your competitors’ products, in order to decide which one to buy?
  • Show the benefits of the features and functions that speak directly to your target customer’s purchase criteria.

5. Show the Product in Action.

  • Show the product working — let the target customers see it in action.
  • Don’t waste a lot of time teasing the audience or talking incessantly, but quickly get into showing the product and demonstrating its benefits.

6. Inspire People to Try It, to Buy It.

  • Appeal to the senses and emotions to make the product look fun, pleasurable, tasty, beautiful, exciting, etc.
  • Examples:

    • Juicy hamburgers that make you really hungry.
    • Exercise equipment that “looks easy & fun.”
    • Beautiful styling lines and colors on a car or printer.
    • Upbeat music that stimulates and excites.
    • Lighting and decor that create an appealing ambiance.
    • An attractive model that captures one’s attention.
    • A remote control toy helicopter that looks a little challenging but a lot fun.
    • Visuals that inspire the audience to think, “Wow…I’d really like to try that!”

7. Alleviate Fears.

  • Customers have the same fears we all do about a product, such as:

    • Will it perform to my expectations?
    • Will it work reliably for a long period of time?
    • How much will it really cost me to operate and maintain?
    • How easy is it to use?
    • What will I do if I have a question or a problem?
    • Is it safe?

  • Identify your customers’ biggest fears and take steps to mitigate them in the demonstration.

8. Consider the Competition.

  • It can be helpful to compare the performance of your product to competitors (directly by name or by inference), or to state how your product is different compared to alternatives solutions.
  • There can be legal issues associated with making claims about competitors so be careful.
  • There are also different marketing theories that should be considered (pros & cons) on when to make comparisons to competitors.

9. Make it Credible and Believable.

  • Typically, it takes an outside, 3rd party, unbiased, objective source to validate the credibility and believability of your product.
  • Consider the following:

    • Use performance test results done by an independent testing authority (metrics can show how your product compared to competitors or how it compared to a benchmark or standard).
    • The testimony of current customers who use the product, who will vouch for its performance.
    • The testimony of experts, celebrities, or people who have integrity with your target customers.
    • Media attention in trade journals, online placements, newspapers, TV news, etc.
    • “Seal of Approval” from rating agencies, professional societies, or industry associations.

10. Move Along Quickly, Clearly, Effectively.

  • The video “story” should flow and move along quickly. It should not be boring, drag, or waste the time of the target audience.
  • Speech and images must be clear and easy to understand.
  • People want to see the product as soon as possible.
  • All spoken words and text should be succinct “sound bites” that explain things with razor sharp clarity.
  • Test the video and its “message” before release — let others see it and get their feedback.
  • Too Much Information — People have little patience and short memories — they want to know those one or two compelling reasons why they must have your product…!
    • Target one to three minutes duration for a product demonstration video. If you need more time, consider making additional videos that focus on specific topics related to the product.

Remember:

  • Make sure people are dressed appropriately:

    • Clean and proper attire: uniforms, suits, shirts, etc.
    • Consider timeless fashions for clothes, glasses, shoes, hairstyles, etc. to extend the life of video and not make it appear dated in a couple years.
    • Don’t have T-shirts or signs in the background with logos or promotional materials from other companies, sports teams, etc.

  • Make sure no one in the background is doing something inappropriate (e.g., yawning, putting on make-up, etc.)


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