An adoption video might be the single best tool you can use to make a match with your future child’s birth parent.  Whether it’s an expectant parent, friend, family member, or distant acquaintance watching, your video can help them become emotionally invested in your family, which can lead to a successful placement.

There are multiple ways that expectant parents and adoptive parents can be matched.  The most familiar way is through an agency.  The job of an agency is to find expectant parents who are looking to place, then provide the expectant parents with several profiles of hopeful adoptive couples to choose from.

Another way adoptive couples get matched with an expectant parent is by what I like to call “The Referral.”  The referral happens when adoptive couples do all that they can to inform their friends, family, neighbors, and even distant acquaintances of their hope to adopt and ask for their help in finding the new addition to their family.  Frequently, a friend or family member will hear of someone they know who is looking to place their expectant child and will refer them to your adoption blog.

My advice to all couples who are hoping to adopt is to actively work both avenues.  One of the best tools you can have to help the agency match you with an expectant parent and get the word out to your social circles is an adoption video.

The purpose of an adoption video is to make the person who clicks on the link of your video become emotionally invested in your future adoption.  If it is an expectant parent watching the video, you want them to feel connected to your family so they will want to place with you.   If it is a friend, family member, or distant acquaintance who is watching the video, you want them to feel connected with your family so they will step out of their comfort zone to recommend you to someone who is thinking of placing.

When creating an adoption video there are a few key elements that can change your video from a standard run-of-the mill video into a sneak peak of your life that will help those who watch become invested in helping your family.

  1. Show your family in action.  We are pretty simple: we waterski, we CrossFit, we play at the park, we love open adoption, and we have dinner as a family every night.
  2. Don’t be so concerned with making it “pretty” as much as being your true self.  I would have loved it if Amelia had sat perfectly still on my lap and smiled at the camera while we were filming our video.  But let’s be honest, that’s not real life and sometimes a game on my iphone is what works for us.
  3. Keep it short.  Three minutes at the max!  You don’t want people to lose interest and walk away.  If they walk away, you are forgettable.  Keeping the focus on adoption, talk about the things that are most important to you and why they are important.
  4. NO slideshows!  Videos show emotion, personality, and interaction.  Videos bring you to real life, rather than just an online profile.  You want people to connect with you and your story.
  5. Don’t be afraid to show emotion, to open your heart and be vulnerable.  You can share what lead you to adoption, talk about your infertility, or describe your relationships with your kids’ birth families.  Keep your language positive, and don’t dwell on infertility.  When you show vulnerability in your video you are sharing a very personal and private part of your life.  A part of your life that you would normally not share with perfect strangers.  When you share your emotions, it creates emotions in your viewers.  If they are expectant parents they’ll want to get to know you better.  If they are friends, family, or complete strangers, they will want to help you on your adoption journey.