Business Videos Mistakes – Mistakes Made in Making Business Videos and How to Avoid them

Business Videos Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

Adapted from books by Patti Wood MA, CSP

1.     Sharing Just Dry Facts

In business videos you need to connect to the viewer’s emotions and things they can Taste, Touch, See and Feel, because learning is not just cerebral. Learning takes place throughout the entire body. All of the senses are deeply involved in the process. In fact, research shows that you cannot separate a person’s senses from learning. Studies on retention find that audiences will forget 80% of what you say within 24 hours of watching your video. So what can you do to avoid making your business videos boring and increase attention and retention of your business content?

First look at any videos you have created and analyze them. What have you emphasized or repeated or driven home with your video? What have you done to make sure they will remember? Imagine someone from your audience being asked by someone who saw the video, “What did you get from watching the video?”
Your viewer is not going to recite the details from 62 slides you showed in the video. They will remember the content; you or your speakers delivered with gusto. They will remember it is the speaker had a unique delivery such as singing, or whispering or standing on a chair. What will you do to capture the viewers attention and engage them? Ok so that right and left brain stuff has been heard before, but it is so remarkable. Isn’t it amazing that it’s not words that stick like peanut butter on our brains, but what effects our senses that arouse our more primitive brain and cause us to remember deeper and longer. We remember with our emotions our sense of touch or sense of smell and hearing.  You want to give your audience that same wondrous experience. A slide of a bar graph won’t do that. Having someone drone on and on with lists of items won’t do that.                                                                                                                                                  
2.      Not Using Stories to Convey Your Message

Instead of listing facts, reading bullet points, and showing charts, tell stories in your business video. The human brain, specifically the right hemisphere, is particularly receptive to information shared through story telling. Think about it, before the internet-books and DVDs, knowledge and wisdom were shared through stories, myths, and epic poetry. If you think you can’t use stories because you are dealing with a business topic or a technical audience, think again.  All those political and spiritual leaders who have used storytelling over the centuries can’t be wrong.  No matter whom your viewing audience or what your topic, the power of stories is phenomenal. Share customer interactions, clinical cases and anecdotes. Stimulate the audience’s imagination through imagery of stories.      
Using stories in your videos can
            1) Create a more attentive and interested audience
            2) Provide a safe way for you to talk about controversial or sensitive topics
            3) Give you a unique opportunity to change minds and behavior
            4) Make your message easier to understand and remember
            5) Provide a personal connection with your audience
            6) Enliven your delivery and energize the viewer

3.     Not Making Your Material Memorable

Think about what they will say about your video after they watch it. What made the best business videos you’ve seen so memorable? What made the worst ones so forgettable? The best videos probably incorporated some or all of the following elements—humor, entertainment, speaking from the heart, unique information, a connection with the audience, and depth of knowledge.  The elements of not-so-great videos probably included data dumping, monotonous delivery.

4.     Not Concluding Powerfully

The conclusion is what provides a bridge from your message to the day-to-day lives of the audience. It is what the audience remembers about your video. It is where you establish your businesses credibility.  You can make or break a video by how you conclude it. So conclude like the finale.

5.     Making the Data Dry Boring and Uninteresting
     Here are Ways to Make Dry Data More Interesting from My Easy Speaking book.

No More Boring Data
In Your Sales, Technical,
 or Scientific  Presentations
How to Make Numbers Interesting and Meaningful.
By Patti W. Wood, M.A., C.S.P.
From her book  "Easy Speaking"

Do you want to avoid having the eyes of your audience glaze over as you present your sixty-seventh power point slide of dry data? Here are some tips for making research data interesting, meaningful and compelling:

1. Make it come alive to the senses.
Relating your numbers to something your audience can see, hear, taste, touch, feel or do affects them profoundly. Our senses are processed in the same part of the brain as our emotions and memory, so the audience will not only wake up when you link it to their senses, they will also remember the content your shared.

Boring Statistic – Our new plastic wrap has a food moisture retention rate that is 
72% higher than the current popular brand.

Sense Translation – Pass around half an orange wrapped in your new brand and a half in the popular brand, each having been stored in the same fridge for one month. Your brand looks fresh. The other is shriveled and brown. Ask them which they would like to eat.

Boring Statistic – Intimate space extends out from the body approximately 16 inches. We prefer to have a zone of space between us and strangers that extend out from the front of our bodies 16 inches. anger.

Sense Translation –Have someone stand across the room facing toward you.  Walk toward them telling them to stay “stop” when before you get too close. They will stop approximately 16 inches from you. You can then extend your arm out and show them how the the length of your arm from the fingertip to the elbow is about 16 inches. Or ask someone to walk up and shake hands with you and then show them how 16 inches about the distance they have you stopped at to shake hands.

Boring Statistic – We produce 3.4 bits of data every 15 minutes. (First you can Make it real by saying, “That is enough data to write on 2049 yards of ticker tape.”)Sense Translation- Hold up a 100-yard ball of string and say, “That’s like 200 balls of string” and start wrapping the string around the outer edges of the room while adding, “…enough to wrap around this room 400 times
2. Simplify the wording to increase understanding. Don’t oversimplify and insult your audience, but simplify to be respectful. 
TYGACIL is a product that provides physicians a simplified empiric management for polymicrobial infections.

Translation:  TYGACIL simplifies treatment for the multiple microbial infections.
Even Simpler: TYGCIL makes is easier to fight different infections.

3. Compare abstract data with something familiar and concrete.
A number all by itself is abstract and meaningless. Take a number and relate it something to people are familiar with. 

Abstract statistic: “Delta airlines burns about 2.5 billion gallons of jet fuel a year.” Make it real: “Picture the Georgia aquarium. It’s really big, isn’t it? Well that’s enough Jet Fuel to fill its 5 million gallon tank 500 times!”

Abstract statistic – Increasing the cost of each parcel we deliver by a penny would increase our profit by $136,000 a day. Make it Real – That means we could add four new delivery vans a day to our fleet for the next year. 

Abstract statistic- The old chemical process cools to five bits per billion. The new process cools at 7,000 bits per billion. Make it Real – The old process is equal to the cooling power of a single ice cube in a swimming pool of boiling water. The new process has so much more cooling power its like is like taking an ice cube the size of swimming pool and putting it into a glass of boiling power.

Abstract - TYGACIL is unaffected by resistance mechanisms that have affected antibacterial drug use. Make it real: Like a picky child waving off broccoli, Antibacterial Drugs have been affected by resistance mechanisms Or Tygacil like TV’s "Super Nanny" resistance and to the protests of spoiled kids Tygacil is unaffected my resistance mechanisms.

4. Deliver it with gusto.
Use voice, body language, emotional emphasis and repetition to make it pop.

Dry statistic – That’s an increase in profit margin of 50 percent in the last quarter.Gusto Delivery – Gesturing with your outstretched palm show where it was last year at your stomach and then put your palm above your head to show the 50 percent increase.

Dry statistic – “…which produces waste at 500 million gallons a day.”Gusto Delivery – When you get to “..five hundred million…” raise the volume level to shout and slow down your delivery.

Dry Statistic – Coca Cola sells 4.5 billion cases of soft drinks in the U.S. annually.Gusto Delivery- Say 4.5 billion normally then repeat it, whispering and elongating the word “billionnnnnnn” as your raise your eyebrows and show an amazed expression.

Dry Statistic -- TYGACIL simplifies treatment for the multiple microbial infections.
Gusto Delivery – as you say simplifies slow down the word as you lift your voice in light positive happy delivery raising your arms high or snapping your fingers to show its a snap.  As you say the word multiple increase your volume and punch the word with force and drama.

Dry Statistic -- TYGACIL is unaffected by resistance mechanisms that have affected antibacterial drug use. Gusto Delivery as you deliver the word unaffected increase you volume and hit the prefix UN with gusto and lift your energy. As you say have affected bring up your volume on the word have, vocally emphasize and put a little of displeasure in your voice.

Now you have four great ways to pep up your dry data. Use them in your next presentation and turn what could be audience snores into rousing applause.

Patti Wood, MA, Certified Speaking Professional - The Body Language Expert. For more body language insights go to her website at Check out Patti's website for her new book "SNAP, Making the Most of First Impressions, Body Language and Charisma" at Also check out Patti's YouTube channel at