A software demonstration video is a sales video.
Whether you need customers to take up your free trial, download a demo version, or simply buy – now – it’s all about sales.
Let’s also be clear: A software demo is not a tutorial or tutorial-substitute.
Most developers see two choices of video style available:
> a Presenter talking about the benefits of the software
> or a professional Voiceover talking about benefits.
This article will show you how to compare the relative benefits of each – Presenter & Voiceover.
In fairness, let me say in advance that the voiceover option is probably the best choice.
Let me explain why.
Comparing voiceover & presenter for a software demonstration video
The best way to sell anything is help the viewer feel like they already own what you’re selling.
This makes the decision to buy so much easier – and less of a barrier to cross.
So implicit in any successful software demo is to give the customer the feeling that they already own the software, that they can use it, and that it’s enjoyable to use.
And that it solves their problems.
Cross these barriers successfully, and you’ll sell more. Simple as that!
Software has to be visible to be experienced
Software is graphic. It’s all based around “what you see”.
So obviously a graphical demonstration of the software-in-action is essential.
By contrast a video that only shows a few hi-tech spinning screens of your GUI is doomed to fail – in the sense that it’ll convert less sales, rather than the full amount of sales it ought to achieve.
This is where the Presenter option presents a problem.
They physically get in the way.
True, a presenter can spit out the benefits, and generate some feel-good with their charming style and likeable manner.
But their big body is always going to be in the way of your exceptional GUI.
In reality, this means you tend to see a Presenter talking to camera, with little “demo” screens floating around to their side.
So while the benefits may be remembered – the feeling of ownership doesn’t properly take place.
The marriage isn’t consummated.
And this means less punters will buy (boo hoo)
How to generate the physical experience of software ownership
Software screens need to be seen in close-up for people to appreciate what’s on offer, and the way it works.
Real buyers want to know the details.
You don’t need to show every detail – and typical 2 minute video runtime means showing “everything” is an impractical route.
But the key features – that lead to buying decisions – must be seen.
And seen in enough detail for the user to feel “Sure – I get that!”
Detail builds confidence.
And confidence makes sales.
The screen should be devoted to the software – an on-screen presenter will just get in-the-way.
Also – when compared to the directness of a voiceover – a presenter can lack authority
Which means they won’t deliver an impression of ownership.
A good voiceover will have an authoritative yet warm voice
This will give an air of confidence to your software presentation – but also make it welcoming.
The user will relate to them – and your software.
The viewer of 2012 wants their information to be delivered this way.
How a voiceover can help with the sales of your other products
There is no reason why a voiceover can’t refer to
> other free software demos
> the downloads of add-ons
> or products and packages that are similar to the ones they’re demonstrating
during the software demonstration video.
In fact, showing what else can offer will help you with your proof-of-claim.
This is very important.
Your software demonstration video must show the viewer that your software will do what you say it will do.
Otherwise they won’t buy it.
Your software will things better for me? Then prove it.
Can using a presenter benefit your software demonstration video?
Presenters are great for B2C consumer sales videos.
They can also be good for B2B based videos that are made to impress the management.
And – in some cases – they may also be good for software demonstration videos.
A presenter based software demonstration video could give an interactive user experience.
This could be achieved by showing somebody physically using the software and its features – through separate shots of
> the user
> the software itself
> and the user interacting with the software – such as a close-up of the user typing or using the mouse.
But this option would be costly and time consuming – live action filming always is.
And the presenter will still get in the way of the software itself – and your message.
So, the best way to sell your software is to make the user feel as though they can relate to it.
And then take ownership of it.
Using a voiceover is the best way to show and prove this – and it’s the best way to sell your software.
Click here for more on what a software demonstration video can do for you and your company.