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6 Foolproof Tips for Making an Instructional Video

Instructional videos are one of the best opportunities to collaborate and communicate with distributed teams.

Instructional videos go beyond the presenter and viewer format of demos, marketing videos, or sales pitches. They introduce an interactive element: the presenter and viewer working together in real time. 

When you recognize that instructional videos are not about consuming information, but rather working together, you get access to big opportunities. 

You can strengthen your distributed team's communication, development, and training. You can also provide much-needed resources to improve the customer experience and nurture relationships. 

First, we’ll review some of the instant value you can expect from creating an instructional video. Then, we’ll lay the foundation to making a strong instructional video, wrapping things up with best practices and a script template you can use to get started.

The value of instructional videos in learning and development

Instructional videos help train employees in a scalable, efficient, and personable way. Using video as a medium for training means you can record once and use that valuable content forever. These videos are evergreen and help you amass a library of helpful content for onboarding employees. 

The core principle for instructing others

The first step to creating instructional videos is learning how to teach others effectively. Teams can develop educational videos by following a simple yet effective process.

Instructional videos are a stand-in for in-person instruction, but are much more scalable. Using asynchronous video, you can provide the same level of guidance as an in-person 1:1 instructional.

Leadership and training expert John Maxwell lays out how to instruct others. First, instructors demonstrate the task. Then, the learner does it with that person. Finally, the learner tries it themselves while the instructor watches.

How to instruct a person on video
Learn how to record an instructional video with these direct teaching steps.

Then, they can complete the same tasks while they watch the video. 

Finally, they try to do it independently in the future and if they have questions, they can interact with you.

Once you embrace the core principle for instruction, it’s time to build out your video strategy. 

Types of instructional videos

Instructional or video tutorials can fall into many different formats. At Loom, we find that the following core formats make instructional videos the most practical and popular.

Short videos: Show someone how to do a very specific action. These micro videos help someone accomplish something quickly. 

Training videos: Train a co-worker or educate a customer on how to learn more complex concepts through step-by-step instructions. 

Presentation videos: Provide long-form videos or tutorials that go into greater depth within a process or platform, or demonstrate how to fully utilize a service. 

Top tips for creating instructional videos

Here are the steps you need to follow to produce a high-quality instructional video.

Tip 1: Clearly define your learning objectives

Each video should present a clear objective, approach, and result for the viewer. The person watching your step-by-step instructions should know precisely what to expect and how you'll lead them to the goal.

When you clearly define your objective, you eliminate confusion, provide specific value, and earn trust by solving their problem.

Tip 2: Write a concise, engaging script

Scripts help viewers stay focused, offer thought-out instructions, and produce clearer videos.

A great script should state the problem you solve, outline how you can solve it, and establish viewer expectations.

You can start by using the following template:

Hi [audience], my name is [name], and I am going to show you how to [define first instructional video goals].

It’s pretty simple when you follow this strategy:

[Lay out a big-picture objective like:

1. Decide what you need to edit

2. Choose how you will edit

3. Complete the job and review]

Once you achieve [the goal], you'll [state the solution] in no time. Use this video to try and follow along.

So let’s get started!

First, you should [task]. 

Go to [next task], then [next task]. 

Second, make sure you [task]. Click on [next task] and then go to the bottom and click on [next task].

Once you've done these steps, your result should be like this [interactively illustrate your point].

And that's it! Now you can [complete this objective] whenever you want to [solution].

If you want more tips, check out our help hub for a full video tutorial library with more valuable instructions to [solutions related to your product].

Tip 3: Focus on visual clarity and quality

Your video and audio quality, as well as the images you display, should hit high standards. Video quality means that your images are clear, not pixelated, and large enough for viewers to read. Audio quality means little background noise, etc. 

You want the focus to be entirely on the problem you solve—not how bad the audio sounds or how grainy your video looks.

Presenters should also ensure their audio and visual elements help make the solution understandable. 

For example, you can move through slides, do an actual walkthrough on an app, and show viewers your screen in real time. You can do all this with Loom and record yourself too, so viewers get a multidimensional communication experience.

Tip 4: Incorporate interactive elements

Your instructional video should help viewers from all demographics and backgrounds solve their problems. 

Some viewers may be tech-savvy and know their way around any app. Others might not. Some viewers might prefer following written instructions, while others respond to visual communication.

Async instructional videos made with the right video creation tool can meet all of these needs. You can provide interactive elements that increase engagement and satisfy different learning styles.

For example, you can embed your video on a web page with text, like an instructional blog article. The added benefit of video is that it adds context and depth to the experience. Loom’s videos can provide subtitles and transcripts as well. So when a user visits that page, she gets a holistic and immersive resource.

Loom interactive elements
Loom’s interactive elements include real time transcripts, emojis, comments and more for an authentic and engaging experience.

Viewers can comment on your videos, post emojis, and even reply with their own videos if they want to send you a question, thanks to Loom.

The best kind of learning—and a way to increase team morale and customer loyalty—is through two-way communication. 

Just like Socrates famously asked questions to students, engaging in a dialogue with them which shaped how we teach today, you can do the same with Loom’s interactive features that give viewers access to your team.

Tip 5: Keep it short and to the point

When someone watches an instructional how-to video, they want answers quickly. 

More importantly, they want action steps. If your tutorial video is full of filler words, detours, and other time-wasters, you could lose viewers fast.

When you're stuck, make a mistake, or say the wrong thing, you can use Loom’s live rewind to re-record without starting over. 

Loom’s AI add-on generates titles, video summaries, and other tasks to save you time. It also removes those pesky filler words automatically.

Focus on your viewers' core needs and how to provide them while doing it as quickly as possible.

Tip 6: Share it

Whether it’s an embed on a specific webpage or an email to the most relevant people, make sure everyone has access to your instructional videos when they need them. It’s the best way to curate evergreen resources, save time, develop your team, and satisfy customers at scale. 

Create a high-quality instructional video with Loom

Interactive instruction videos tutorial training
Loom homepage

Loom is the all-in-one solution for instructional videos. Users can record their computer screen and themselves simultaneously, providing an interactive experience with a personal touch. 

You don’t need advanced video creation skills. Loom is for everyone—and you can take advantage of instant screen recordings without the learning curve or high production costs.

The asynchronous video communication platform gives you full access and control to creativity and communicate your process. Draw on your screen, comment with emojis, and give viewers the opportunity to reply with a video or text. 

Loom also has AI add-on features that save you time with automated titles, summaries, and more. 

Screen recording is easy when Loom gets rid of filler words, gives you editable transcripts that directly edit your video, and even lets you rewind when you mess up. 

Together, these features make explainer videos scalable so you can quickly provide valuable assets in a couple of minutes. 


Mar 28, 2024

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