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Tips and Resources for Outreach with Video

Online videos are a useful marketing tool for both organizations and independent businesses and can reach audiences who may not see many other marketing channels. Creating effective, short video clips doesn't require expensive equipment. When used with a tripod and microphone, even basic cameras can do the job for web-only clips, and editing can be learned quickly. See if you can identifying an interested person in your group and get started! Creating relevant videos also may boost your website traffic and search engine rankings.

Videos can fulfill a crucial element of your educational campaign--and personalize your organization and members. Your community members will be far more receptive to your "buy independent/local" message when you've told stories about your local business owners, put names and faces on the business names, and talked about things the owners do for your community. We encourage you to make it personal, not just business!

We're always available to help you with ideas for video clips and offer a few examples and tips (below) to get you started. 


You can use emotional appeal, humor, creativity, associations, logical argument or other tactics to deliver your message. Here is a sampling of videos to provoke your ideas. 

Kevin Bacon Gospel Choir (Shift Your Shopping)

"Mama Don't Send Me to the Big-Box Store" by Las Vegas First (NM) 


Just Around the Corner

From Sustain-a-Bull Durham: a video produced by a local bookstore, the Regulator, and local filmmakers in 2009.


One from a series by the Louisville Independent Business Alliance

"LIBA Reason #58" by Keep Louisville Weird

"We're Open" by the Michigan Main St. Program (2009)


Michigan Main St. also produced a longer (2:49) version

"The Consumer" by Thrive (2012)

"Keep Boulder Weird" by the Boulder IBA (2010)


"Keep It In the Loop" by Portland Buy Local (2011)

(While some of these videos succeed at holding interest for two minutes
or more with professional, fast-paced editing, we encourage groups to
start with videos of no more than one minute.)

Independent We Stand created this clip in the vein of
"We're Open" (2010)

The IWS YouTube page also has many videos promoting individual businesses

Video reports can update members about your group's

Small Business Saturday Help Local Merchants featuring Louisville IBA

WDRB 41 Louisville News

Coverage of Capital Area IBA (Springfield, IL)

With permission, longer news clips like these could be excerpted
for publicity 

Portland (ME) Independent Business and Community Alliance


Your Business or Members Can Leverage Their Independence
in Videos

"Parody of Unmentioned Megabrewery" by Breckenridge Brewery (2011)


Recommended Resources

10 Tips to Better Video (Camcorder News)

Facebook video marketing (Reel SEO)

Made to Stick is a great book on the value of storytelling and key considerations

The Center for Digital Storytelling offers a wealth of deeper information

The book Storyteller Uprising: Trust & Persuasion in the Digital Age is available as a free pdf and in other formats. The author, Hanson Hosein, produced two recommended documentary films: Independent America: the Two-Lane Search for Mom and Pop and Rising from the Ruins.

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Other Tips from AMIBA

We've seen good videos by AMIBA members on YouTube that have few views, so don't forget to promote them on your website and through social media!

If you plan to create more than one video, use the same closing image on all of them for continuity (consider the same opening, too).

Consider crafting a video for every member of your local alliance who prominently displays/links your IBA logo on their website and ads (or some other incentive). Nearby colleges may be a great source of interns with video skills for such a campaign.

When using music on a video, your best option is to utilize local talent! See if any local artists are interested in having their music featured on the video. If you intend to use music found online, make sure it is copyright and royalty free. Such music can be difficult to find, but one resource we have found is Danosongs.

Note: This primer is among many produced by AMIBA on various aspects of operating effective buy local campaigns, Independent Business Alliances and other pro-local initiatives. Most are reserved for access only to AMIBA affiliates (since we relied on many other groups for content used here, it is accessible to everyone.) Thanks to all who submitted videos or suggestions (we welcome additional recommendations)!