West Street Productions has been creating recruitment videos for law enforcement, first responders, and 911 emergency communication centers for over ten years. And the way we make video today is much different than it was with our first police department recruiting unit. It used to be a seven to ten minute video gave a potential recruit a broad brush overview about the job, from the training academy, to the patrol car, to benefits. But not anymore. Now we council clients that short is better if you want to reach a multitasker generation.
In today’s budget crunch environment a well produced video may cost a few dollars, but it is a good investment. If you are being smart about how you use video, then you may be able to rethink how you allocate other resources in your recruitment unit. It may give you more freedom to decide how you use your travel budget. One good short video, or a series of short videos can be used on a number of platforms, from web site, to Facebook, Twitter, to pep up personal appearances in a PowerPoint, or even at a job fair playing on a laptop. Research also reveals an email with a video embedded in it has a much greater chance of catching someone’s curiosity, it only takes a quick click of the mouse to watch it, otherwise they are more likely to hit the delete key.
Adobe, an industry leader in video software and production, studied the growth of video in 2012. What they learned is staggering, and it all points to video as the most effective tool to communicate a message. Here are a few highlights to think about:
- Downloads are up over 30% year over year
- From the third quarter to the fourth quarter in 2012 alone, video consumption grew 13%
- Video starts on smartphones tripled from 2011 to 2012; with the number of tablet video downloads slightly outpacing smartphones
The study also found a big impact from social media sites. Facebook dominates the social referrals, but Twitter is three times more likely to refer to a video than other types of content. During 2012 video social engagement jumped from 42% to 70%.
The best way to take advantage of all of this is to find ways to tell your story in video, and get it out there. Look for opportunities to weave more video content into your recruitment channels, both on department web sites and social media. Offering more video content is one key to unlocking the value of social media, and to attract more engaged digital video viewers.