If a picture says a thousand words how many words does a video say?
Well, according to Forrester Research, a minute of video is worth 1.8 million words. It’s no wonder why more and more small businesses are pushing harder now than ever to tell their story through the power of video. With a minimal budget and some creativity, brands are racking up millions of eyeballs online, and you can too. There’s no reason why your business can’t take advantage of the new age in advertising, and in just a few steps, we’ll show you how.
1. Concept Is King
Quality is important, but having a captivating concept is what will help you have a successful video campaign. Tap into those creative employees and watch some successful video campaigns like these to find some inspiration. It’s important to keep your ideas organized and develop them on paper, you can use different tools to organize your ideas such as a storyboard, or what we prefer: a shot list.
2. Do You Need Gear?
At Flint & Steel Studios, we use DSLR setups for maximum flexibility, however I’m willing to bet that the device in your pocket is capable of HD video too.
Videos require more than just a camera- at a minimum, you’ll need lights and a microphone along with some other miscellaneous gear to create high production value. here’s a short list of some basics:
Only need the gear once? Check for local rental shops or use Borrow Lenses to get almost any gear you could ever need.
Whether you end up using an DSLR or your iPhone, the important part is that you start
3. Shooting Your Commercial
Here we are, the meat and potatoes: these are three main points you’ll want to hit as you shoot you business’s video:
- Personal Interview/Testimonial
- General B-Roll
- Logo Graphics
Personal interviews and customer testimonials are arguably the best way to put a face to your business. Have some questions prepared for yourself and the interviewee, here’s a few of our favorites:
- Please introduce yourself and state your position at X company.
- What is a hidden talent of yours? What is an interesting fact about you?
- What do you do as a (state position)?
- What’s going on at X company that is unique or different from the competition?
On a technical side, we are very particular about lighting. There are many ways to achieve a flattering look but in the early days, it’s best to stick with the tried and true 3 Point Lighting setup. Again, if you don’t have studio lights laying around, you can always rent from a local camera store or from Borrow Lens.
Audio is often overlooked; however it is difficult to overstate the importance of quality sound- it’s the other half of your video. Lapel microphones work excellent for interview pieces, just make sure you take time to properly hide the microphone under a collar or jacket for a sleek and professional look. A directional boom microphone works great too to get clear and crisp audio. Booms can be hung over the interviewee just out of the camera’s frame. For our purposes we use exclusively Sennheiser audio equipment.
“B-roll” may sound like some kind of fancy sushi you could find at your local Americanized Chinese food place but… it’s not.
B-roll is a general term for any footage of your product, service, place of business, or any miscellaneous footage you feel is relevant to your business. Normally this footage is placed over your interview footage in the editing process to allow viewers to see a demonstration of exactly what the interviewee is explaining. Check out a good example here.
Your logo is hugely important when it comes to branding your content and gaining brand awareness. A trick we have found for creating moving logos like the one at the end of the video you just watched is using a service called Fivver to outsource the work for super reasonable rates. A simple search such as “Moving Logo” should offer some solid options.
4. Okay, How Do I Piece This Together?
Editing… Some love it, some hate it, but it needs to be done… and done right. You have a few options for editing and I’ll go in order of ascending skill level. Keep in mind that editing is an acquired skill. The only way to become great is practice and a whole lot of YouTube tutorials.
iMovie is an excellent tool to transform all your clips into one video with little effort. iMovie is available on any apple computer or iDevice and normally comes pre-installed. It really is a plug and play system, especially if you filmed the video on your iPhone.
Moving from iMovie to Final Cut Pro is like taking off your training wheels. With more freedom and control, you’re able to experiment with color grading, sound, masking, etc. You’ll be able to add plugins you may find online which will allow you to customize the program to your workflow. This intermediate option is priced around $299 which is worth every penny in our book.
Adobe systems are by far the most advanced and have the biggest learning curve. On the other hand, the reward of learning these systems is incredible flexibility and endless possibilities when it comes to creating great business videos. For video, you’ll mainly be using Adobe Premiere and Adobe After Effects however the beautiful thing about Adobe is that all their programs (Photoshop, Lightroom, Illustrator, etc.) work together seamlessly. This is our go-to system and we have no plans of leaving Adobe in the foreseeable future.
5. Posting Your Video
So now that you’ve created your video, where do you post it and how? YouTube? Facebook? Instagram? LinkedIn? Vimeo?
Yes, all of them.
Firstly, you’ll want to make sure your video is uploaded to a video hosting site such as YouTube or Vimeo. This allows you to embed the video to your website using the generated link/embed code. You can post your YouTube/Vimeo link on social media, however we highly recommend posting the original video whenever possible to get more visibility & views. Facebook, for example, will automatically play your video when someone scrolls past it rather than a boring old link that redirects them to YouTube.
Fun fact: over 85% of video is watched with no sound. It’s critical that your business video has captions, and you can use a service like Rev.com to generate great captions for just $1/minute.
If you’re looking for a one-stop solution to creating a killer video for your business we would be happy to help, you can schedule a consultation call at any time or reach out by email here.