Matt Wood

When Steed Remodeling, in Kansas City, Mo., decided to include client testimonial videos on its website a few years ago, owner Bo Steed and his son, general manager Mike Steed, didn’t expect to have the cameras turned on them, but, in retrospect, they’re glad they did. “[This way] people get to know us before we meet them,” Mike says, which is especially important in a market where potential clients might otherwise only focus on price differences between remodelers.


The videos were made by Steed’s website developer. The Web consultants engaged by Steed Remodeling to overhaul the firm’s site had gotten to know the company during the process of creating its client testimonials. They then turned the camera on Bo and Mike asking them questions tailored to their marketing goals. “We explain how our company is different,” Mike says, “and that there is more than just price that goes into the decision-making process to remodel a house”; craftsmanship, respect, trust, and communication are also important.

Short-form video is most effective for small-to-medium-size businesses interested in telling their story. A full one-third of viewers drops off after 30 seconds, falling to below 50% during the first minute. —

Steed Remodeling spent about 1% of its annual revenue updating its website and adding testimonials and owner videos. “Half our marketing budget for the year went to that,” Mike says. “It was a one-time cost.”


Tamara Myers, president of Myers Constructs, in Philadelphia, and her partner, vice president Diane Menke, both star in a video on their company website. They created the video almost a year ago as a fun, educational tool that allows potential clients to get to know the company and its design/build process. “It helps you bring in the clients that you want,” Myers says.

Myers and Menke worked with their public relations consultant, a marketing company, and a video developer to create the video footage.

Consumers who view videos on a website are 64% more likely to buy something from the site. — comScore

Menke felt strongly that people — especially the younger demographic — are much more comfortable with video. Also, the owners thought it would be helpful for potential clients to see the employees who would be part of the team working on their house.

The Myers and Menke video interviews are unscripted, informal, and dynamic. The team wanted to keep the scenes in the video moving: “We wanted enough changes so we engage folks,” Myers says. “A talking head can be tough — having just one single shot for a long time.”

The video cost a few thousand dollars to tape and edit, and the company plans to eventually add more videos that cover more specific topics such as design styles and the company’s design development and construction processes.

NOTE: Google, Yahoo, MSN, and AOL are among the hundreds of search engines that give priory listings to websites that host video content. In addition, you can build in "tags" on the video, which enhance its potential on the Internet. Read more here.

—Nina Patel, senior editor, REMODELING.