'How much does a video cost?' I've just met someone who is interested in having an online video presence to attract more potential customers or clients to their offering and this is nearly the first question. My heart sinks.
In your business what is the first question people ask you when they are enquiring about your service? Is it 'How much does it cost?' No? I didn't think so. And yet that is often my experience because for many people it is the first time they are commissioning a video and perhaps they have not considered what is involved. As you think about it now, what do you think is required to create a video? Anyway as a little prompt have a look at the video here below and guess what work goes into it, what is its purpose and then finally the cost of it, put your answers in the comments below. Take a look now...
Often times when I talk to prospective clients they don't realise the wealth of content and information they could easily turn into video to boost their findability in search engines. Just consider slide shows you have used in the past to deliver news or information either internally or externally. Annual reports, white papers blog posts any of these assets can be usefully exploited for creating videos. They may need some tweaking to deliver the message that is relevant to today but none the less you have so much content that you can use. Then add in a good voice over, add some animation to the slides in video editing software and hey presto you have a video to add to your marketing arsenal.
This is a video I created recently for Success Partners the coaching wing of my business.
Perhaps you have been thinking about hiring a video producer to help you make some videos for your business website but don't know what happens during the shoot and would like to know. This (slightly longer than usual video >7 minutes) will give you tips on the key elements and help make the process simpler whether you are in do-it-yourself mode or hiring a professional.
There was a time when shooting a video involved a huge camera or cameras and tons of gear all accompanied by a large team of film-makers not to mention a wad of money. All of which was daunting for anyone but a professional actor and sometimes even for them. How things have changed. Now you can shoot a video on a smartphone and get a pretty good result. So in many ways the technology is the least of your worries. So what it comes down to really is; how you perform on video as to whether or not you connect with your audience. I hope you'll forgive my assumption here, you want to connect with your audience, and you want to connect for a specific reason and you looked at this briefly in the pre-production video.
So you have your script and you’ve decided how you want to come across. I know, you just want to be yourself - authentic. But which yourself do you want to be? It reminds me of when I lived in Finland and Finns would say to me they wanted to speak with an English accent and poo pooed the American accent, I was both perplexed and fascinated and wondered which type of English accent; Cockney, Liverpudlian, upper class or unintelligable to the untrained ear or one of the other possibly 57 varieties. I was curious why they were telling me this, especially since I don’t have either. Mind you I never did get an clear asnwer.
Anyway back to the shoot. I don’t know if you’ve noticed, you bring a different you to the fore depending on the context. There may be the playful you when you are playing with your kids, or teasing your friends on an evening out. Then there is the you when you are presenting to a group, or there is the leader you, the friendly you maybe even the silly you. I guess you get the picture. The interesting thing is you can snap in and out of these various yous at the drop of a hat. So ask yourself how do you want to project yourself? Who do you want to be? Who do you want your audience to see?
The selfie has really changed many peoples attitude to posing infront of a camera because in the past I’m guessing you remember anytime you produced a camera, people stood to attention and froze like rabbits in the headlights. How do you like being in front of the camera? Rabbit or poser? No matter, here’s the thing, the camera is your friend, it doesn’t judge you, it just wants to do the best job it possibly can and it’s up to you to help it.
As you know a mic is vital to a polished video and it gives the feeling of being close to the person, like having a conversation, without a mic it’s like you’re at the far end of a hollow room with the sound reverberating around and around, it doen’t help with connection. The closer the mic is to you the better, so the lavalier mic is the obvious choice.
You have your script but how are you going to remember it? Even actors have prompts due to cues from actors and other prompts. If you try to memorise it, great – but the chances are you’ll be seeing it in your minds eye and your focus will be inward and not outward to your audience, oops! You can always print it out big and have it to hand and easy to see but the downside of that is you can end up looking a bit shifty with your eyes darting off the camera lens to read. The solution to all of this is a telprompter. And even with the teleprompter there is an art to using it effectively. Look out for a future video.
In order to make the shoot go as smoothly as possible you will probably want to practice your script in advance. Decide what gestures or props you’ll use and when. What inflections do you want to use in your voice to create the unconscious responses you want from your audience. What else can you do? You can play with your script so you loosen up your body and thus come over more naturally. One of the interersting things about the camera is; it soaks up about 50% of your energy, and I guess you don’t want to come over like a zombie this means; you need to deliver with extra energy! Unless of course zombie is what you are going for – it’s sooo popular at the moment hahaha, but perhaps not great for boosting your business.
Finally be prepared to do lots of takes. You’ll stumble, loose your place, sneeze, stutter or frown in all the wrong place. Never mind. just go again. There is no need to go right back to the beginning each time. Just resume from just before the hiccup. It can be stitched together in the edit. Each time you record yourself you will improve, just like anything else practice makes perfect. The funny part is sometimes by the last take, you are ready to give up, blow up or whatever and you let go and relax and that becomes the foundation for the edit. And it’s a wrap.
Thanks for watching
In the next video we’ll examine the editing process, see you then.
I’m Julie Silfverberg with SuccessVideos your video coach.
If you have never made a video before or even if you have but were not satisfied with the result it may be because there was not enough time devoted to the planning phase. Have a look at this video to get a bit more of an understanding of the ins and outs of pre-production.
In the overview video you saw the big picture of the three stages to getting started with creating videos to boost your business. And here you'll discover more detail about the importance of creating a comprehensive plan, pre-production for your video. Stay tuned and watch this video.
The first thing to consider is what business result do you want from your video? Do you want to build your following by getting likes, views and subscriptions or do you want your viewers to take action like contact you, click a link or buy from you? Maybe want to inform or educate your audience. Once you've decided on your business goal, next you choose how to structure your message.
Now some people are excellent communicators and can be very effective at speaking off the cuff but for most people, the message will be clearer and more effective when it's scripted. Online viewers tend to switch off if presenter rambles, doesn't get to the point or repeat themselves. A script helps you stay on track. Even if you choose to go unscripted, creating a short list of key points might be something you'd consider.
Now that you have your script or plan, the next step is to decide what to show: who, where, what and possibly how; for example to demonstrate your product or process. After this you decide what to shoot by analyzing the script because you want to enough appropriate shots that shows the script. After all it is show and tell. If you go for presenter style like I am here what other shots called b-roll support the message.
If it's an interview what percentage of time is going to focus on the interviewee, interviewer or do you want more of a story. To help visualize how the video will look a storyboard can be really useful because it visualizes and abbreviates the shot-list.
The storyboard doesn't need to be elaborate, stick figures are fine and the purpose is to show, camera moves, framing of shots, shot sizes for example close-up, medium or long shot. It's kind of like a comic strip of the project. So the script is like the blueprint for your business goal. Then there's also the sound element.
How do you want your video to sound? Audio is a really important factor in whether viewers will watch your video no matter how interesting the subject. This is why using a mic is so important but more on that next time.
You've probably noticed music in movies often signals what's coming, spooky music gets you going to feeling a bit scared or playful music will make you smile. What kind of music will create the type of emotion you want to elicit from your audience?
I don't know if you've noticed some supermarkets use music, slow music causes you to spend more time browsing because you move more slowly and of course then you're probably spend more that way too. Similarly sound effects play a huge part in selling your visuals, just think about a radio play and the impact sound effects have there.
So these are the key elements in creating the plan of your video. Set your business goal for your video, script it, create a shot list, make a storyboard and decide on your style of music or FX. When you use these steps you'll create an effective video plan.
Thanks for watching. Next time we'll be looking at shooting the video.
I'm Julie Silfverberg with SuccessVideos show and tell for grown-up business.
I have been fascinated by pictures both static and moving for as long as I can remember. Research evidence backs up how powerful video marketing really is.