Video Tutorials in Agile Way

It goes against logic, but that’s true. Users are more comfortable with amateur video than video with professional narration.

The Challenges We Wanted to Address

Customers needed local support

Scale live demo experience

First Attempt: Professional Narration

  • Those videos were hard to maintain. When we updated some feature in the software, we had to update narration with the same voice talent and do the video synchronization once again. We released on average three improvements weekly, so if we wanted to maintain videos up to date, we had to update them regularly as well.
  • We faced difficulties localizing those videos into other languages. The videos were based on scripts that were supposed to be easy to translate. In reality, the translated scripts narrated by local voice talent did not work that well.
  • Most important: those perfectly polished videos resulted in being too perfect. People commented that those tutorials were not natural, and it was hard to follow the idea. The perfect English of the narrator did not work well for non-US users.

Second Attempt That Proved to Be Effective

Finally, we ended up merging video tutorials with text manuals

Don’t use professional narration

Shorter tutorials are easier to maintain

Keep tutorials up to date

Keep product tutorials free and public

Talk to your audience — don’t use scripts

Silence is the best background

Technical Setup

Use a USB microphone

Use a silent mouse

Make sure your laptop doesn’t make any noise

Use lightweight video recording software

  • Screencastify — a lightweight plugin for Chrome. There is only basic video editing functionality, but it is really lightweight and uploads the results in no time.
  • Screencast-o-Matic — has a better video editor and some other cool features, but processing takes longer.

Business Systems

Make tutorials SEO-friendly

Automate video embedding

Users need to find relevant videos quickly

Use tutorials to low support costs

  • Now users ask fewer questions — not because they are less engaged (we checked other metrics as well), but because they can find answers on their own.
  • The customer support team uses those tutorials. A perfect case is when we answer the question (immediate solution) and also provide a link to a relevant video tutorial (in this way, we teach our customers to find the right materials themselves).

The tutorials won’t replace live calls

The tutorials won’t replace excellent content

Making tutorials help to fix UI

Tutorials are not just about features

Were the Initial Challenges Solved?

  • We started seeing much more corporate clients who now feel comfortable about the way we provide product training and customer support.
  • The experience for new users seems to have changed in a positive way as well. We still do live demo calls, and people still ask many questions, but these questions now indicate a much better understanding of the software.

To Be Solved

Subtitles

Solution for outdated videos

1 hour+ video has good karma on YouTube, but the problem is that it is outdated

Experiments Go On

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CEO at BSC Designer, author of 10 Step KPI System

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Aleksey Savkin

Aleksey Savkin

CEO at BSC Designer, author of 10 Step KPI System

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