Self marketing 101: Using video to increase your brand awareness for $0

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Marketing yourself on social media can seem impenetrable even to those who grew up with it. There are algorithms, analytics, and hundreds of other ever-changing acronyms and industry terminology that marketing professionals use to squeeze every last drop out of every post they make. This complexity is great when you’re considering hiring a marketing professional or team to take your brand to the next level. However, if hiring a professional isn’t in the budget or you want to increase brand awareness without hiring anyone at all, there’s a dead simple, surefire way to make sure your business shows up in more people’s LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, and Tik Tok feeds: Post videos with your smartphone. Yes, it really is this simple.

This doesn’t need to be complicated. While nice to have, you don’t need professional videographers, a camera that costs thousands of dollars, a scriptwriter, or a professional editor. These are great if you want to step up your marketing, but simple videos from the shop floor or the office taken on your smartphone will generate traffic — not might, not could, will. Short-form video is the most interacted-with type of social media. Social media platforms don’t care how nice the video looks. They count how often people interact with a post. The more people who interact with it, the more it shows it to other people. Here are a few tips for taking advantage of that social media algorithm. The tips will be separated into two categories: shooting video and posting them to social media.

Shooting Video

Take short videos, between 15-30 seconds, of things that people don’t often get to see or of things that you find funny. Things such as a CNC machine working, a gear being cut, a cool machine that you use, etc. If you think it’s cool or find it interesting, someone else out there will, too. Additionally, you can always put yourself on camera and talk about, well, whatever you want. However, if you do that, be prepared for comments on you and what you say. In terms of social algorithms, any interaction is good interaction and will send your video to more people. If you’re the type of person who is bothered by people arguing with you, commenting on your appearance, or you prefer your face to stay off the internet, then the first option is more than sufficient. Keep in mind the goal is getting content with your name attached to it in front of people’s eyes, not direct advertising.

(Courtesy: Shutterstock)

Posting to social media

In terms of posting those videos, there are three things to implement in every video:

  • Make the video auto-play on every platform available.
  • Choose a good thumbnail from your video.
  • Trim the loose ends of the video.
  • Post regularly, at least a few times a week.

For the first tip, if a platform allows a video to be auto-played, make sure this is switched on every time. Platforms such as Tik Tok and Instagram thrive on this feature. For the second tip, make the still image someone sees before they click on the video engaging. For example, if you’re filming a gear being cut, have that be the still image, not the beginning where the camera is pointed at the ground or someone’s back. You can usually make the thumbnail in the platform you are uploading to directly from the video. If you can’t, then take a photo with your phone and use that instead. Lastly, most platforms allow you to choose where your video starts and stops. Trim the bits of footage that have evidence of you starting and stopping the video — a half of a second will usually suffice — and then upload.

As a final bit of advice, temper your expectations. This is a long-term strategy. Don’t expect massive upticks in people following you on social media or for your video to suddenly go viral. Instead, this will result in a steady growth of followers and interactions, which will tell those social media platforms to show your content and your brand to more people. That’s not bad for $0 and a few minutes each week.

Upcoming Webinars

Asia-Pacific Security Policy and What Future Developments in the Region Mean for Bearing and Gear Companies 

May 16 | 1 p.m. ET | Webinar

Defense budgets and investments in security arrangements are accelerating as tensions rise across the Asia-Pacific region from Taiwan to the South China Sea to the Pacific Islands and beyond. In this webinar, we analyze what these developments mean for the bearing and gear industries and do a deep dive into the defense spending plans of the United States, Japan, and other allies and partners in the region for the near to medium term.

Imports 101: The U.S. Customs Requirements that Every Bearing and Gear Company Needs to Know

June 20 | 1 p.m. ET | Webinar

Every day, companies large and small in the bearing and gear industries navigate complex supply chains and shipping challenges.  Many of these challenges stem from the complex and multifaceted laws and regulations that govern imports into the United States. This webinar covers the essentials of these laws and what you and your team need to know to keep your operations and sales humming while potentially saving some money on tariffs in the process. This webinar is both an introduction for those new to international trade and supply chains and a refresher for seasoned practitioners.

Upcoming Education

Analytical Gear Chart Interpretation

May 16 | Live Online Course

This course is an introduction to the methodology of analytical gear inspection and the evaluation and interpretation of the resulting data. The application of this information to identify and correct manufacturing errors will begin to be explored. Additionally, it reviews chart interpretation and applies inspection data to understand the causes and cures of manufacturing errors. Many chart examples are used to understand cause and effect.

Gear Failure Analysis

May 21-23 | Chicago, Illinois

Explore gear failure analysis in this hands-on seminar where students not only see slides of failed gears but can hold and examine more than 130 specimens with the same failure modes covered in the seminar. Approximately half of the course time consists of students in groups identifying failure modes on failed gears and working on a case study. Microscopes are available to examine failed specimens.

For a full list of the 2024 courses, go to: agma.org/events-education/upcoming-courses/.

Calendar of Events

May 16 — Analytical Gear Chart Interpretation — Live Online

May 16 — Asia-Pacific Security Policy and What Future Developments in the Region Mean for
Bearing and Gear Companies — Webinar

May 21-23 — Gear Failure Analysis — Chicago, Illinois

June 4-6 — Gearbox Systems Design — Clearwater Beach, Florida

June 10 — LIFT – Emerging Technology Summit — Detroit, Michigan

June 11 — Emerging Technology EV Standards Town Hall — Detroit, Michigan

June 13 — Loaded Tooth Contact Analysis — Live Online Course

June 17-18 — Involute Spline Design & Rating — Live Online Course

June 20 — Aerospace Committee — Webex

June 20 — Imports 101: The U.S. Customs Requirements that Every Bearing and Gear Company Needs to Know — Webinar

June 25-27 — Fundamentals of Gear Design & Analysis — Rosemont, Illinois

July 18 — Possible U.S. Carbon Tariffs & Subsidies for EV Production – Prospects for Bearing and Gear Companies — Webinar