Commonly employed by those companies providing a digital service (although also used for some physical product companies too), onboarding is the means by which users who have recently signed up are taught how to get the most out of the product – or in some cases how to use it. Onboarding can be thought of as an essential component of product success (because it displays to new users everything it can do) but also as a means of increasing the product’s value and a means of user retention. If a user becomes exasperated because using the product is difficult or because they are not experiencing everything it can do, then they are unlikely to remain users for long.
This latter point is why onboarding is particularly important. It is an all-too-common phenomenon for users to sign up for a product after only a short period of use only to leave just as quickly. Accordingly, onboarding needs to not only serve as a type of interactive user’s manual but also a means of experiencing the product’s full potential as quickly as possible.
The Power of Video for Onboarding
WMV Productions, an online video marketing service, say that one of the best forms of onboarding is video. Such videos can serve as a virtual guide around the full user experience. However, it is worth pointing out that onboarding videos need to be instantly engaging, and they need to not only teach about the product but promote it too.
The reason you should consider video onboarding is that it is a chance not only to boost user retention but truly reinforce brand identification as well. When a user is watching an effective onboarding video, they are that bit more likely to stay for the whole thing. This is because the onboarding video will supply useful information about the use of your product, and viewers will be keen on this (lest they simply cannot use your product). As a result, you have a semi-captive audience with well-made onboarding videos designed for winning products, which gives you a lot of opportunity for brand reinforcement.
Creative Ways to Use Video for Onboarding
So, how can you effectively use video for onboarding? Well, that relies a great deal upon what the product is. Nevertheless, there are a few suggestions that should prove effective in the majority of cases. Here are some of them:
Put an Onboarding Video on the Homepage
And not only that but let it dominate the homepage too. Popular cloud storage site Dropbox is a great success story here. When Dropbox was growing its brand, its homepage featured nothing but an onboarding video explaining how Dropbox works and the download link underneath it. It was massively successful. Accordingly, you should make onboarding the first thing many visitors to your site do.
Embed Onboarding into Your Product
After the signup process, users will finally have access to your product. A great move is to have an onboarding video (usually of the “virtual tour” sort) appear within the program for all new users. You can make this skippable, but it’s wise to have one.
Include an Onboarding Video in a Welcome E-mail
Another way to go about onboarding is to include it as part of a welcome e-mail. For a short amount of time, you will have the undivided attention of the e-mail recipient, and you can onboard them (as well as build brand awareness) there and then.
Ultimately, a successful product is one that people know how to use. But in satisfying this requirement, there is an opportunity to do so much more with video onboarding.