Selling With Video – TubeTalk #140

Selling With Video

Last updated on June 14th, 2024

Selling With Video

There’s an art and science to creating videos that sell. In this Tube Talk, Jeremy Vest talks to Dane Golden from VidActionTV about the best practices for creating high-impact videos that entertain, grab the audience’s attention, and turn them into buyers.

Enjoy, and please share if you find this episode valuable!


Jeremy Vest: What’s up everybody. This is Jeremy Vest from Today I have Dane Golden.

Dane Golden: What’s up Jeremy?

Jeremy Vest: How you doing? Dane Golden.

Dane Golden: What up?

Jeremy Vest: Today, Dane’s going to be interviewing me about selling with video. That’s actually the topic I’m going to be speaking on at VidCon. If any of you guys out there are going to the VidCon industry track in late June, definitely come by. My early nine o’clock class, which people are usually late at but all right. So I’ll let Dane take over now.

Dane Golden: So, yeah, first of all as you know Jeremy any time you’re talking at any conference, I am in the front row taking notes and frankly I’m taking photos with my iPad too. I’ll look forward to that but you have some very thought-out and sort of cutting edge theories about selling with YouTube and other video and also conversion. Conversion is just sort of like selling. It’s just sort of meeting a goal. Whether it’s to download something or sign up for something or buy something or it’s a lead gen or demand gen type of thing. And YouTube is what I focus on. You deal with all sorts of video but wanted to talk to you about this because a lot of times people just have no clue where it fits in the conversion equation. Sometimes it’s only the last click that gets counted and gets attributed to the sale so, your session is going to be called Selling With Video, is that right? At VidCon?

Jeremy Vest: Yes, yeah. So basically we’re going to be breaking down the top-selling video ads and really describing and understanding why they became successful.

Dane Golden: Let me interrupt you before you say that. When you say the top-selling video ad, what is a selling video ad? How do I know it’s a top seller and what’s it mean to be a selling ad versus a different kind of ad?

Jeremy Vest: You know it’s interesting. I mean any type of video can fundamentally sell stuff right? So if you are changing the carburetor on your car and the guy’s like, “Hey.” Soft sell you, “I use this brand because it’s cheap at AutoZone.” You may just go run out to AutoZone and buy that cheap part he mentioned even though he wasn’t even trying to sell it because it fits the need right? There’s a multitude of ways to sell from informational and how to and why to. There’s a million types of videos but specifically what I’m talking about is like a Squatty Potty type video or a Dollar Shave Club video where it’s a very, very serious commercial.

Now, it’s funny. It makes you laugh, but there’s a deep, almost infomercialish style of very, very, very strategic way to sell someone. They start by describing what the problem is. I love how FiberFix did this. Basically, how are you going to describe to someone that duct tape is not as good as the product you’re selling? That’s a hard thing because duct tape’s awesome, right? Well what they did is they drove a car off a cliff with a roll cage with duct tape and then they did one with a roll cage with FiberFix which is fiberglass reinforced tape and they were able to let people know, “Hey, if you wanna actually fix something, use this type of tape and not duct tape.” So, very, very powerful, visual product demonstrations with pretty hard-hitting facts of why you should go from watching this video to purchasing something online. So, that’s what I say when I’m saying a sales video.

Dane Golden: In general in these types of themes, do they look directly and speak directly to the viewer?

Jeremy Vest: Yeah, most of the time, for very successful sales videos, someone’s looking to you right in the camera, right into the eyes. They’ve got a tight shot. The eyes are the window to the soul so there’s the subconscious, “Hey, I may like this person.” Or, “I may trust this person.” If you can see the whites of someone’s eyes. Yeah, there’s a lot of strategy with eyes and people being close to camera. People are typically talking directly to you and yeah, definitely.

Dane Golden: And I wanted to add just a little pitch from my own work that we did a study with TubeBuddy about the word “you” and being used in various forms. You, your, yourself etc in the first few seconds and you were quoted in the beginning of that study with your own thoughts on the topic but we found that dramatically using the word “you” can increase views and likes and comments over not saying that word. Do you think the word “you” is important?

Jeremy Vest: I do. Especially in selling because you’re not talking at someone, you’re looking someone, staring them right in the camera and trying to explain that the person watching this video is a part of something that needs to be changed.

Dane Golden: When you’re doing a sales person in person, you’re selling somebody something at an electronics store, you look at them and you say this is what it’ll do for you, right?

Jeremy Vest: Exactly. Exactly. Yeah. The power of “you” is huge and you guys should definitely, definitely see that study. I think it’s …

Dane Golden: Something like that. I have it on my website,

Jeremy Vest: The power of you.

Dane Golden: Not exactly. Something like that.

Jeremy Vest: Go to

Dane Golden: So, Jeremy, a lot of these videos that we’ve seen by you and other friends of ours. Would you say that they’re selling videos? Is that what the grouping is?

Jeremy Vest: Yeah, sales videos.

Dane Golden: Well they’re highly produced. Is that the only way to go? Is there a way you can do it yourself? How do you determine if you need a several hundred thousand dollar budget or you just need an iPhone?

Jeremy Vest: I think telling a story, it really doesn’t matter about the budget. I will say that we’ve codified these top between 20 and top 100 ads that do well and we’ve found the real theme here beyond video production itself are the quality of jokes. The actual product itself being something that’s better than the rest of the crowd. If it’s a me-too product, meaning it’s just better, cheaper, faster what have you, it usually doesn’t work well. If it’s a unique product, like Squatty Potty, a stool for your toilet, those type of products seem to do really well because-

Dane Golden: A stool for the feet next to your toilet.

Jeremy Vest: I get it. Okay. I guess you’re not putting your toilet on a stool. That would be awesome though. But the more unique and the better the story that you can tell then I think personally an iPhone version of these ads would do just as well. As long as the eyes were well-lit and the audio was perfect.

If those two criteria are not met, then I think the high-end video production’s going to do well. Also, from a subconscious level, especially people that are a little older like over 30 years old, that’s not old by the way I’m 40, but are used to television commercials, so a lot of people actually get a little weird about buying a product from a non-polished commercial. Having said that the more authentic you are the more real it is. The reason people are going to buy that carburetor for someone from some Shadetree Mechanic’s YouTube video on how to replace your carburetor or whatever, alternator, is because it’s just a dude saying, “Hey, this is … I’m not financially incentivized to sell this, this is just what I use. I like it and it works.” I think that there’s also something to be said for the opposite side of quality video production because of the authentic nature.

If a little kid, 13 year old is doing one of those fidget spinners and they see another 13 year old that’s like, “Hey, I really like the quality of these bearings better because of these seven reasons.” Odds are that 13 year old doesn’t have an affiliate link and is not making money. It’s just the actual solution that the other kid was looking for. It’s like I want the fastest bearings, I want the best quality. So there’s a lot of ways to sell.

Dane Golden: And it can be well produced and authentic too.

Jeremy Vest: Absolutely.

Dane Golden: They’re not mutually exclusive.

Jeremy Vest: Absolutely.

Dane Golden: But I want to ask you a very important question and I want you to be entirely honest with me. If you spent all this money in production a) can you just do nothing and let it just upload, any old time and it’ll sell and sell and sell. Or can you buy just a whole bunch of views of people watching in Malaysia and then get it to sell?

Jeremy Vest: Yeah, that’s a good question. I will say that I think the answer lies in how big your actual brand and audience is. So for example if Red Bull, I don’t know how big their subscriber base on YouTube and Facebook is now but obviously we know it’s big.

Dane Golden: Huge.

Jeremy Vest: It’s big. So, if they were to do a viral ad. A funny comedy ad I’m guessing just because they have millions and millions of people that are going to see that and then press and you know maybe a CNN or Mashable or WIRED or some big magazine maybe picking it up just because it’s Red Bull, I do think there’s a actual case study to be made that if your brand’s big enough and the video’s good enough, you could make it happen on its own.

Dane Golden: If you already have a huge platform.

Jeremy Vest: Yeah. An example of that is we did a lot of work with car driver magazine this year with Facebook live and we got them over 10 million organic views with zero dollars spent.

Dane Golden: Huge.

Jeremy Vest: I mean, they also have 2 point something million followers on Facebook so everyone was getting those live Facebook notifications. So, yeah, I think there’s definitely something to be said for that. Now the unicorn brands, they can do that. Most of the rest of us, even brands like Squatty Potty and FiberFix, 60% to 90% of those views are paid. It’s an ad and you are able to have a cost per acquisition and you’re able to budget that in to the manufacturing and marketing of the product so that you can sell more products. What most of us don’t realize about these big, awesome ads are they’re actual ads. People are spending money and they’ve been able to dial down a cost per acquisition and expensive enough to keep on selling more products. It’s all about ROI.

Dane Golden: And it’s not just that you’re just paying for this to be a pre-roll or whatever but there’s other parts to it. It’s, “How you’re doing that targeting. What platforms are you doing it on? How you’re splitting up the promotion of it on Facebook and Instagram and elsewhere.” And then, “How you’re doing the organic or PR?” Right? I mean are these not all pieces that make it happen?

Jeremy Vest: Yeah, the hardest part about doing one of these type of ads is everything kind of has to fall in line. The landing page, the converting landing page has to be amazing. The distribution plan, the PR and marketing plan, the cost-per-view and acquisition and the platform. I mean, it’s hard. To do one of these type of Squatty Potty style ads, it’s like six months’ worth of work for an agency. I mean, it’s a lot of work. And when you get that video done and a lot of these videos now it’s like half a million dollars, obviously you can do it for a lot less, that’s like the starting point. Once you have the video done, you still have to make hundreds of ads and remarketing and retargeting and you still have to do tests every day for a few months. It’s an unbelievable amount of work to just stumble upon to get these things right.

It’s all science. It’s all Multivariate testing and I think a lot of marketers just don’t realize that the people making these ads are some of the smartest people in this industry in the world.

Dane Golden: It takes a lot of effort to make everything look like it didn’t take much effort.

Jeremy Vest: Exactly. Exactly.

Dane Golden: Well, I think that that’s a good point to stop huh?

Jeremy Vest: Absolutely.

Dane Golden: So, go see Jeremy at VidCon.

Jeremy Vest: And Dane Golden, where can people find you and what in the world do you do?

Dane Golden: Yeah, I help manage channels for companies. I love BDB tech companies best that have tons of videos on their channel. International channels. Love doing that for people. Company’s named And check us out there or follow me at Dane Golden everywhere. Friend me on LinkedIn.

Jeremy Vest: Awesome and you can find me at Jeremy at or Vidpow bam everywhere. Vidpow is really focused on helping businesses with video marketing strategy. So we help from auditing what’s happening to developing plans, to helping to execute tests of those plans to training and we’re really strategists. We have over a billion views for our customers now and we’re kind of a big deal. No, I’m just kidding. Hey Dane.

Dane Golden: Kind of a big …

Jeremy Vest: Hey Dane. Until next week.

Dane Golden: Keep talking tube.

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