Video Marketing – The Best Fonts for Online Video

Video Marketing – The Best Fonts for Online Video

Previously on ViewFinder: When you do this, it makes the moment feel either
comfortable or tense. There’s not a lot of in-between. We’re going to look at text, since text is the most often used element of what? “Oh, I know, I know! Motion graphics.” Well yes, that’s right Stevie, motion graphics. I’ll even give you the fonts that produce the best response. Welcome back. I’m Steve Washer, author of
The Video Brain and creator of Audience Builders Blueprint. So, while last time we looked at text on
video in general this time we’re going to look at fonts
in particular– which ones do you use and why. First of all, I need to tell you this
is a somewhat subjective topic. What I find attractive you may not like, or you
may like it a lot and your audience may not respond as much as you hoped. With that in mind, I can show you the two font families I’ve been using
for the last year that have helped make my videos easy to
watch and somewhat engaging. The first thing to know about these two
families is just their last names. There’s the Serifs family and their neighbors across the street
from down south, the Sans Serifs. Now the Serifs are introverts. When I go visit them and ask them to
make an appearance, they kinda hide behind the curtains and pretend
they’re not home. When you do finally convince them to go on, they just
sort of sit there and tremble like a dog in a
thunderstorm, and kind of smear and freak out and try to hide. Unless you wrap them in a big heavy winter coat. Then, all of a sudden, they get courageous and
attractive and and full of mojo. So here’s the thing about the Serifs. The reason most of them don’t work on
video is the ends of the letters, that’s really
where the font gets its name–the Serif ends. They tend to disappear on a video screen
and make the words harder to read. Now there are two Serif fonts that do
work well from a video marketing perspective. The most commonly used is Adobe Caslon Pro. Seems to work well enough, but to me, it’s kind of dull and doesn’t look as good in winter
clothes. The Serif font I really like is Georgia. Georgia looks as good in video as it
does on the page, which means you can have more unity between your marketing
materials. And I think that for experts and professionals in particular this is the one to use. It has an
elegance and a confidence and a sense of style that the other Serif fonts don’t. Remember these must be in their bold
versions for video or none of this works. Well that’s it for the Serifs. Okay, you can run off now, go on home, that’s alright. Now, for the main dish: the Non-Serif fonts. Non-Serif just means you don’t have any
little curly cues thingies at the ends of the letters, and this makes them ideal for video
because they’re so easy to read, compared to Serifs. Primarily, I’ve used Helvetica, especially when teaching. It’s a sturdy, non-aggressive font that gets
the job done; it’s the handyman of fonts. But again, this one should really only be used in
bold because otherwise it’s just too dull,
which means it’s limited once you start making marketing videos. For that a better choice might be
either Myriad Pro or Avenir Next. Both look good in regular
or bold format, and Avenir even looks good in light, something I would not recommend for any other font, as long as it has a high contrast
background behind it. So iI hope you’ve seen the take-away here is
that you should be using Non-Serif fonts 90% of the time. Now, then there are the specialty fonts. I used to use this one, Bank Gothic, to open the BrainyVideo broadcast. You know why? I’ll tell you.
I don’t know. I just thought it looked stylish and
authoritative without being obnoxious. But when I changed the tagline from non-intimidating to fun-based, I needed a less stuffy font, and I’ve
really enjoyed Handwriting Dakota for this, but you can’t make it bold. So you have to be very careful about what’s behind it, you know, in the background. It would be easy for a line of text made
with this font to just disappear. Now, if you’d like to do one of those intros
with a big cinematic punch, it’s very tempting to use the one that
gets overused on web pages, you know, for the latest greatest thing that you just
have to have or the world will come to an end in the next 92 minutes. I’m talking about Impact. It just got too popular. It’s too
bad, because it does have a powerful feel to it. Well, good news: there’s another font that
will give you the same impact but with less baggage. It’s called Haettenschweller. And it’s just as good, only less shouty. Obviously there are others. These
are just some of my favorites, and time prevents us from going any deeper
into all the situations that you would use these in. So, if you’d like to learn all about the
mysteries of video fonts and other aspects of motion graphics, and how they affect conversions, just keep it
on this channel. There’s a lot more to come. Now I want to remind you there’s still time to sign up for our special training on the
9th of April. I’m gonna walk you through how I do
Greenscreen. It’s a different philosophy than you’ve
probably heard before. It’s designed to engage, not necessarily to impress. We turn some cherished ideas upside down
to get the effects we do. Hundreds of people have signed up for
this, by the way, so try not to wait too long. You can
sign up right below this video. Also, there won’t be a replay, so please
mark this event on your calendar, I don’t want anyone to miss it. I can tell you this though, it’s gonna be a mind-blowing session.
I think you’ve already figured out that there’s so much more that can be done with Greenscreen
than just slapping a background behind your talking head. In fact, one thing we’ll be covering is Fake Greenscreen. an even easier and faster way. Now, you have to be
super careful with this because if you do it wrong, you can get your hands cut off. Well, okay, that’s it for this week. Hey, for faster trips to the emergency room, I’m Steve Washer with

14 thoughts on “Video Marketing – The Best Fonts for Online Video

  1. Steven, Georgia is my all time favorite font! When my name appears in any serif font it looks like my first name starts with 2 el's so which has caused a ton of confusion over the years. Arial is the worse offender. Thanks for sharing your font tips!

  2. Excellent point! Those 2 I's can be troublesome, and a san serif could indeed cause problems. I can see why you love Georgia!

  3. Delightful and hilarious. As a 15-year professional in typesetting (before everyone got a computer and a laser printer), I'd like to say, "Bravo!" Well said.

    And your videos have inspired me to create more of my own, including one for my new IndieGoGo crowdfunding campaign for my book, "The Bible's Hidden Wisdom."

    youtube (dot) com/watch?v=x1Nv8Mgh0z8

    Not as good as yours (yet).

    Haettenschweiller has been a favorite of mine and I kinda like Eras Ultra, too.

  4. This was very helpful as it was fascinating! Sadly a lot of the fonts you mentioned aren't available in my editing software 🙁
    I'd be interested in what font you would recommend for QUESTIONS as I am currently editing a video where I ask the viewers questions in a big and bold manner.

  5. If you don't have these fonts, then you'll need to get them or just use the standard Arial or Helvetica fonts that come with your system. Either will work for now.

  6. A Google search yields sites selling Haettenschweiler for about $30 and some sites offering a free download of this typeface, which makes me suspicious. Has anyone downloaded a virus-free free version, and if so, from which site?

  7. *** FIRST — what a delightful tutorial, it's exceptionally different. It welcoming, engaging, not condescending in the least, lighthearted and not "too" cute. Most of all you packed a bunch of excelling introductory information for those who've searched all over the Internet for exactly the guidance you offer regarding video fonts. A perfect starting point.

    I've been a graphic designer for decades with many projects being type intensive or for logos that can carry the weight of a company it represents.

    I had to laugh because (without focus groups) your back pocket video fonts are Helvetica and Georgia — my tried and true video faces, too. I also agree with your (co-) secondary choices as well. What's nice about Helvetica and Georgia is you can "mix" them together.

    Example, using Georgia large (upper or lower case) as the primary title name of the video "THEIR TRUE COLORS" or "Their True Colors" and if there's the need to add on the same frame some secondary information — it should be at a much smaller size (no more than half the size of the primary title) Helvetica — it does the trick e.g. "How Paint is Made" or "HOW PAINT IS MADE" etc. Also, both Georgia and Helvetica are the base fonts on any computer or text generating source — ya don't gotta buy it 🙂

    I only stumbled on your video and I'm going to tell a number of my graphics and video making students to watch this YouTube post.

    Thanks for a rather nice moment over my morning coffee.

    [ wc ]

    PS: Add to your list of secondary fonts — Franklin Gothic (all weights) — it can be a tad more refined but is a great choice complement to the Avenir family.

  8. This is the best handwriting font I have ever seen,

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