Video marketing is one of the best ways to reach potential customers on the web today. People respond to video marketing — when it’s done right — because it’s more interactive than just reading a post about your products or services. Plus, people are familiar, and therefore comfortable, with short videos ever since the invention of the television ad!

But if you don’t take the time to make your marketing videos correctly, then you’re just wasting your money: nothing is worse than trying to sit through a hastily made video with low production values and audio that sounds like it’s coming through a drive-thru speaker. In fact, it’s better to have no videos at all rather than using bad videos. Here are some of the biggest mistakes that companies make when attempting to create marketing videos and how they affect the bottom line.

Using a small budget

If you think that slapping a video up on your website without any consideration for quality is fine, then you’ve made the biggest mistake when it comes to video marketing. If people see a video of poor quality on your website or social media page, what do you think they’re going to think about the products and services that your company offers?

The reason you want to make videos in the first place is to show off your brand and if you make bad videos, then you will be projecting a bad image to the people who view them.

Of course, you don’t need to spend Hollywood money on video, either. The most important thing to remember is that you want high-quality videos that get your message to your customers. For a short video, this may be just a few hundred dollars. For a longer, more in-depth video, you may need to spend thousands. Companies like Crews Control can help you figure out your budget needs so you don’t underspend and embarrass your company.

Poor distribution strategies

After you create a video for your marketing campaign, you want people to view it, right? Another big mistake that companies often make is not understanding how to get the video to their audience, which results in wasted effort and money.

You need to put the video somewhere your customers can easily find it. Don’t bury the video on some page on your website that people rarely visit: place it front and center on your homepage, especially when it’s new. This way, people will have the chance to view it every time they visit your business page.

Then, post the video to all of your social media accounts. This increases the likelihood of people sharing the video so that it will reach even more potential customers. The more people who view the video, the more valuable it is to your company.

Confusing messages

Whether you want to create a short, 30-second spot or an epic five-minute commercial with a story, your number one goal should be to get your message across to your customers. That’s it. That’s the entire reason you’re making a video anyway.

Choose what message you want the video to tell — great customer service, an upcoming sale, a new product launch — and stick to that point. No matter how you tell the story — after someone watches the video, they need to be able to tell you what the message was in as few words as possible. If they can do that, then you’ve gotten your point across and you can probably assume that the video will be pretty successful.

Not understanding your audience

Every audience of every company is different: what one customer base may find funny, another may find insulting. What one finds exciting, another may find boring. If you want your videos to really succeed, then you need to cater each one to your audience.

As a marketer, you should already have some sort of idea about your customer profile. Do parents or single twenty-somethings use your product, or is it a healthy mix? Are your customers skewed by gender one way or the another? Do low, middle or upper-income households typically use your company? The answers to these questions can help you identify the type of videos you should make. Catering your video to the wrong audience will not help at all and may even hurt your company in the long run, especially if you don’t have the insight to stop doing it.

If you’re thinking about making a marketing video, remember these common mistakes and avoid them.

This post was written by Andrea Keating, Founder CEO of Crews Control. Andrea introduced the industry to the concept of a freelance film and video staffing company in 1988. And since then, it’s been an incredible experience made all the better by great clients, fabulously talented crews and the best team on Earth working right along with me.