Video has become a primary marketing method for businesses in the past few years. In 2020, 85% of companies offered video content as a marketing strategy. Almost 80% of the group that isn’t using video plans to implement it in 2022.
It’s much easier to create video content now than it used to be. Anyone can put together professional work using a smartphone and basic software. Also, there is a lot of leeway when it comes to what company videos should look like. Some are candid and casual, while others are tight and scripted.
Still, whether you’re producing a presentation for a conference or a reel for Instagram, following certain guidelines will help your content stand out. Try implementing these video production techniques to create an appealing product that attracts and engages viewers.
1. Start With a Storyboard
Everyone is a producer these days, and many people post off-the-cuff videos. Failing to plan your content out can reduce your efficiency and diminish the quality of the final product. Even if you’re creating a candid video, you should do a bit of preparation to avoid snags and optimize the final product.
Creating a storyboard lets you get a sense of the final content before you spend time and money on the production. A storyboard is a sequence of rough images that represent individual shots. They can help you plan out the angles, lighting and composition.
Starting with a storyboard allows you to visualize the best places to insert voiceovers and transitions. It also allows you to delegate while keeping everyone on the same page.
You don’t need artistic proficiency to create a storyboard. You can sketch each shot with stick figures and written details.
2. Consider a Script
A storyboard may be all that you need to prepare for your performance. But many people freeze up when it comes to speaking in front of the camera. A script is helpful for maintaining the conversational flow.
Be careful when using a script, though. It’s almost always obvious when someone is reading from cue cards. Memorization can result in a stilted, phony performance.
You may have to experiment to find the technique that works best for your performers. Some people prefer to work from an outline. Others work best when someone reads them a line and they can repeat it back.
Remember that your sound doesn’t have to be recorded live. You can always apply a voiceover or soundtrack.
3. Fix Your Lighting
Even if you record a spur-of-the-moment video, it’s going to fall flat if it’s not easy to look at. Lighting plays a vital role in your video production.
At minimum, it influences the way that the scene is captured by the camera lens. Lighting techniques also act as nonverbal communication, setting the mood, creating interest and directing the focus.
Some tips to keep in mind when lighting your videos include the following:
- Natural, indirect lighting gives you consistent, clear illumination.
- Avoid intense lighting, like bright sunlight and spotlights, for general use.
- Ring lights work well for head-on, close-up shots of the face.
- Dim lighting can make the video grainy.
- Overhead lighting casts unflattering shadows.
4. Frame Each Scene Using This Formula
If your lighting is spot on and you frame each scene correctly, you can produce eye-catching videos that your audience wants to watch. One of the simplest ways to understand framing is to use the rule of thirds.
Imagine that you could draw a tic-tac-toe grid on your screen that divides it into nine rectangles. Many cameras give you the option to overlay this grid onto the display screen as you compose each shot.
There are four points where the lines intersect. These are the anchor points. Make sure that the subject is lined up with at least one of these points. Most people’s eyes go to the top left anchor point first. Align other essential elements, like the horizon and text, with the lines on the grid.
With this type of composition, your presenter won’t usually be in the center of the screen. The horizon will be higher or lower than the center line. This rule results in video that just seems to work even though the viewer can’t explain why.
5. It Should Sound Good
The best imagery can be ruined with terrible sound. There are many mistakes that businesses make when it comes to sound production, including:
- Reels that are so loud they scare you when you scroll through social media
- Muffled, unclear sound
- Too much background noise
There are microphones available for every type of recording equipment. Use them to produce clear sound quality for vocals. Use a wind screen if you’re recording outdoors. A pop filter can tone down harsh percussive sounds that people make when they talk.
Test your sound comprehensively before you move forward with filming. You can waste a lot of time if you record a beautiful video only to realize in post-production that the wind overpowers the speaker.
6. Record Plenty of Takes
Even if you think that your first take was perfect, record a few more. Having multiple recordings gives you resources that you can use in post-production.
If someone seems unnatural when delivering lines, have them express the statement in different ways. You might be able to edit snippets together to create a longer monolog.
In addition to capturing several takes, record some b-roll. This includes shots that support, complement and round out the primary footage. Close-ups, distance shots, location imagery and multiple angles will provide you with useful b-roll.
7. Fine-Tune the Product
You can edit your footage and add effects and transitions in post-production. This is where you can really make the video shine. You can put the same footage together in hundreds of ways to create videos that give off completely distinct vibes.
A soundtrack or sound effects can set the tone for the piece. Make sure that you abide by licensing guidelines and copyright laws when adding music to your marketing videos, though.
Professional editing is often the most effective way to tackle the post-production process. It can save you time and result in a higher quality video than you could produce on your own. Experts can ensure that the imagery, sound and timing are exquisite. They also understand how to format a video to foster audience connection.
How to Implement These Techniques
Experimenting with video recording and post-production allows you to learn what works best for your goals. However, if you don’t have much experience with video production, you might hit some obstacles or get stuck with limited ideas. A professional video production company can infuse your work with new life, allowing you to put out videos that your audience can’t stop watching.