Be well prepared and organized for your video shoots. If you show up to your shoot unorganized and decide to “wing it,” your final product will look unprofessional and sloppy. On the other hand, if you’re prepared, you’ll be able to focus your efforts on directing your actors rather than figuring out last-minute logistics. Know exactly what you want before the day you film.
Top Pre-Production Tips:
- Be original. The idea/concept for your video project should be original and creative. Don’t take the easy route and copy someone else’s idea.
- Plan it out. Be organized and plan everything out in great detail during the pre-production phase. Write a script, draw out a storyboard, and create a shot list.
- Be selective when choosing video subjects. Set high standards when casting actors and actresses for your projects. Pick someone who can deliver dialogue naturally.
- Carefully consider the set. Don’t try to fool your audience by “set dressing” your office to simulate another location. Your audience is paying close attention to every detail of your video. Shoot your video projects in locations other than your office if the setting of your video isn’t an office.
Aim to make your footage as close to perfect as possible. You can always touch up your footage when you edit afterwards, but remember that editing takes time. If you can make everything look as close to perfect during production, you will save yourself a lot of valuable time in post-production. If you shoot a scene and it doesn’t come out great, learn from what went wrong the first time, and shoot it again.
Top Production Tips:
- Be cognizant of sound quality. Don’t come off as an amateur with poor sound recording quality. Use lapel/lavaliere mics when shooting sit-down interviews.
- Set up lights. You don’t want your footage to be under or over exposed, so set up lights and eliminate any unwanted shadows.
- Use a tripod. Make sure the tripod is level.
- Focus. Make sure the camera is in focus and white balanced.
- Obey the ‘rule of thirds.’ Always obey the rule of thirds when framing your shots. Your subject’s eye-line should be on the top horizontal line leaving an empty space on the screen in the direction where the subject’s eyes are aiming. The subject’s mouth should be on the bottom horizontal line. Try not to position your subject in the middle of the screen. There should be a small amount of room between the top of the screen and the top of the subject’s head.
Make sure your content is remarkable and tailored to your target audience. Edit your video down so it gets to the point and doesn’t drag on. You have 8 seconds to capture your viewer’s attention. Make sure that the video is engaging, informative, relevant to the viewer, and that the viewer will clearly understand the message.
Top Post-Production Tips:
- Align the flow of the video with the emotional response you want to evoke in viewers. The tone, structure, and pacing of your video has a major influence on its effectiveness and the emotional impact on your audience.
- Leverage b-roll. Cover up your cuts with b-roll footage that complements the narration.
- Optimize video text. Keep the style of your text and titles simple, classy, and sharp.