When not to use video

I was shopping for a professional service the other day.

There were about 10 options, and I had narrowed down my choices to two.

It was time to decide. Someone was about to get a few thousand of my dollars.

I go back to option A’s website to make my final choice.

I click on the services page.

Here’s what I see:

“Click on the video below to see what services we offer.”

That’s it. Just a video.

Game over. Option B gets my money.

Why video ruined everything

When you are transmitting critical information, you cannot do it exclusively by video (or audio). You can’t, you can’t, you can’t.


Because a lot of people won’t watch videos.

They won’t watch them because they’re concerned about their bandwidth, or they won’t watch them because they’re on their work computer, or they won’t watch them because their kids are awake, or they won’t watch them because it takes too long. (Usually, it’s the last one.)

Some people simply will not watch. They will then not get the critical information, and away they go to your competition.

A word about critical information

What counts as critical information?

Something you couldn’t remove and still keep the integrity of the structure.

Price. Format. Deliverables. Key pieces of sales copy. Anything you couldn’t take out and still do the job.

If I told you the number of times clients showed me their sales page and I said, “Wait, what about [whatever is missing]?” and they’ve responded, “It’s in the video”, you wouldn’t believe me.

This is totally insane. Go find whoever told you this was okay and throw spaghetti at them.

Now, if you have non-critical information, you are welcome to put it exclusively in video. (Testimonials are a good example of this.)

If you have critical information and it also exists clearly and obviously in text, you are welcome to ALSO put it in video.

But you CANNOT have video be the only method of communicating critical information.

People will simply leave. Not all of them, no. But unless you have a religious or philosophical reason to refuse money from people who don’t share your love of YouTube, you are throwing money out of your car window.

Are there exceptions?

Yes. There is ONE exception.

If you ONLY sell products that are ONLY videos, you can do whatever you want.

If you sell video training and only video training, then you don’t really care if I don’t see the critical stuff because I would never buy anything from you anyway.


If this is a video training product and you also sell things that are not video training products, you still have to put it in text.

Because if you want my money for other stuff later, you don’t want to alienate me today.


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