Elearning video tips and best practices you should never ignore

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Bring your digital learning to life with our top 8 effective elearning video best practices. It’s no secret that video engages learners and makes for a more effective learning experience. But it isn’t always quite as simple as recording, uploading and seeing the learning happen. If you want to create real impact, make sure you follow these essential ingredients and tips.

8 effective video elearning tips and best practice

Engaging and educational, when people get video right it can have long lasting impact. And, nothing is as powerful as employees creating online learning videos themselves!

In fact, with the rise of distrust in leaders, employees are relying on their peers to help them learn and influence how they feel about things. Additionally, with hybrid work becoming the norm, learning and development teams are faced with the challenge of creating a new hybrid workplace learning strategy. One in which employee-generated content helps not only share ideas and knowledge but digitises those watercooler moments employees are losing by not being in the office.

If you’re going to create engaging elearning, you need to keep your learners and video creators focussed.

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1. Focus on your programme and elearning objectives

Whether your employees are watching a video to learn or they’re recording their own learning stories to share with the team, you won’t create the right impact if they don’t know what they’re trying to achieve. Setting clear objectives for your videos (and any wider learning initiative) will help everyone stay on track. This should link to an overall engagement, behaviour change or performance goal.

Learning and development teams need to make sure they keep learning objectives high level and don’t get stuck on the detail of the course content. These can be included in your online learning script and storyboard. You may be looking to raise awareness or embed behaviour change, but whatever it is, think about the actual results you need to see. Helping people understand the purpose of the learning before you ask them to hit record will keep messaging aligned and empower them to deliver the best possible employee-generated video. Your job is to make sure your creators know exactly what the learning objectives are so they can stay on message.

2. Know your audience

You may know L&D or your subject matter through and through, but how well do you know your video’s audience? Before you start creating videos, do a bit of research. What is your demographic? What are their knowledge, skill and experience gaps? What are the barriers they face? Finding out more about your audience will help you structure videos that resonate and create the learning outcome you want to see.

With employee-generated video, recording will be part of the learning experience. So, when you invite them to contribute, your audience research can help. What will motivate them to record? What will they see as personal risks and how can you mitigate these? Do they have experience of sharing expertise? Understanding and responding to what they need will help them produce more effective and authentic videos – engaging your video creators and subject matter experts is key.

3. Be clear on the benefits

When you’re inviting employees to contribute their own user-generated content, be clear about how the process will benefit them. From sharing their expertise and helping others, to embedding their learning and developing future skills – this is a learning experience in itself and there are plenty of benefits to choose from! If they focus on why they’re recording the video, they’ll overcome some of the self-doubt that can creep in as a novice video creator.

At StoryTagger, we use the Creator Venn when asking people to record a video. One of these pillars is making sure your video creators have a purpose – why should they create something for you? If you’ve failed in the past to get your people to create something of value, it might be that you failed to answer one of these questions.

Video elearning tips to engage your creators: The Creator Venn

Of course, there also has to be a clear reason for a busy employee to press play and watch the videos produced. If these user-generated videos are going to grab and keep your learners’ attention, the viewer needs to know how it’s going to help them. Find out what it takes to keep them interested and watching.

4. Keep it relevant

From day-to-day tasks to urgent deadlines, there are lots of demands on people’s attention. If they’re going to engage with your video learning, it needs to feel relevant immediately.

There’s no better way to do this than going direct to the people who know best and getting employees to create elearning videos. Providing the right tools and support will help empower everyone to share their expertise so your learners will find relatable stories from a diverse and inclusive range of voices and faces that make up your business. Hearing these authentic lived experiences creates far more emotional connection than top-down corporate learning. In the long term, it also decentralises L&D and enhances the learning culture across your organisation.

5. Make it concise

Learners can quickly lose interest, especially when faced with lengthy elearning video or irrelevant course content. A university study has shown that engagement drops dramatically after six minutes of watching a video. So, try to keep your elearning videos below six minutes. Two-three minutes is even better.

If there’s a lot to say, think about how it can be made more digestible for your learners. Help employees who are recording videos break their story up into shorter parts and stay succinct. Create prompts and use section time limits to keep them short, relevant and to the point. Employee-generated video tools like StoryTagger can help you do this.

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6. Tell a story

Humans have been using storytelling to learn and share knowledge for millennia. Storytelling can engage your audience, create an emotional connection and get them invested in learning. Compared to reading reams of theory or learning by rote, learning through storytelling feels more natural. Effective stories win hearts and minds, but they also offer context. By sharing knowledge and experience, stories show how things really work in the real-world.

“A well-told work story is worth its weight in gold.” Iain Culkin, EQUANS UK

Help your employees use a classic storytelling arc which you might find in books, movies, and TV. Provide them with a framework that breaks their stories up into chapters or scenes. For example, start with an incident, problem or issue – something to hook the viewer in. Explore what steps were taken in response and add a bit of conflict or challenge to keep up the interest levels. Finally, end with a resolution and the key takeaway.

If you’re using technology to help people share their story, make sure there is structure to give guidance like StoryTagger’s ready-made story templates .

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StoryTagger CEO, Cheryl Clemons shares how incorporating UGC in video training helps you deliver more ROI from what you’re already doing, increase adoption and behaviour change, and boosts learning transfer.


7. Develop trust

Learning is most effective in organisations that are open, curious and inclusive. However, most businesses are on a journey to get there culturally. Developing trust is essential so that learning, knowledge sharing and collaboration can effectively take place.

People may have concerns about hierarchy or team politics that might stop them from contributing learning videos. Build trust with regular communication and by being clear on how the video content will be used. Make sure that anyone who creates video is ultimately in control and can consent to how it’s used.

8. Get everyone involved

Last but definitely not the least of our training video best practice is getting everyone involved. Your elearning video content should reflect your employee voice. It needs to shine a light on all the different voices and faces that make up your business.

And, these days with L&D budgets being cut, doing less with more is a MUST. It’s not surprising that L&D projects are looking to tap into user-generated content production. According to the Digital Learning Realities 2022 report from Fosway Group, over 50% of L&D teams planned to extend their digital learning resources by upskilling and working with SMEs and internal talent on learning content production.

Video elearning tips to engage your creators: The Creator Venn

Of course, the best way to do this is through using the right tools to help everyone create videos. When combined with storytelling, reflective practice techniques and direction, every employee can create high value video stories others can learn from. StoryTagger is an example of a tool that guides people to become confident and competent content creators. Through video storytelling, employee tacit knowledge is transformed into tribal knowledge and learning then becomes something the whole organisational is involved in, rather just owned by a central L&D team.

Free guide: Why you need an intentional strategy for curating employee-generated content.

Final thoughts

Video has long been a favourite with learners. In fact, in 2020 a survey by Google reported 58% of people used video to gain new skills. With asynchronous video, they can learn at their own pace – pausing or scrolling back and forward, and repeating as many times as they need. Simply add your videos to your Learning Management System (LMS) or Learning Experience Platform (LXP) and people can easily access them, anywhere and anytime. And that means their learning can be applied immediately.

The trick is making sure the video you share with your learners follows good practice and you understand the challenges and benefits of video elearning. And, most importantly, that you involve your employees in creating the elearning content. This not only saves you money and time, it aligns with how learners want to learn in today’s world: from their peers.

Using StoryTagger to create employee-generated video is a quick and cost effective way to support your organisation’s learning because it guides people to reflect on their experiences and share something of value. It helps decentralise L&D by sharing everyone’s perspectives and ways of doing things, not just the voices of leaders or those who shout the loudest. It’s also a learning experience in itself. Employees become creators and learners become teachers by reflecting on their experiences, discovering how best to tell their story and building confidence with video. And, as your community of video creators grows, so does your learning culture.

If you need your employees to share valuable learning experiences quickly, put these elearning best practices into action with a tool that makes it super easy. See what StoryTagger can do for you with a free demo.

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Storytelling at work

Why you need an intentional strategy for curating employee-generated content. Download it today.

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