Of the many things our team learned in 2018, one of the most crucial is the importance of video content in reaching and engaging target audiences. Video marketing has been on the rise for the past 5 years as social and display advertising becomes increasingly effective. A recent study showed that 64 percent of consumers said watching a marketing video on Facebook influenced their buying decision.
Engaging photography? Excellent. Awesome video content? Even better.
If you’ve ever worked in any kind of video production, you’re probably familiar with the idea that it takes so much more than just the 30 seconds, 1 minute or 3 minutes seen in a beautiful final product. What’s not seen in the final product are the countless hours of concepting, storyboarding, planning, production and editing. As such, we’d like to share the four key things we’ve learned in video production to get to that gorgeous final frame.
Storyboard, storyboard, storyboard
Storyboards help your story, become, well – a story. Creating a storyboard helps elevate your concepts to an actual arc that has ups, downs, exciting moments, music, tone and more. Think about a video piece that has truly moved you. Just like a feature-length film, a shorter video piece is developed from a frame-by-frame storyboard that helps strengthen your story, build characters and emphasize key messages.
Storyboards are also crucial as they help video production teams visualize how shots will connect and flow together. Specifying frame type, audio, movement and more can help correct any major production mistakes before they are made.
Always keep the frame in mind
Before scouting locations and shoot day, it’s hard to tell how a live action frame will compare to the one on the storyboard. It’s important to be meticulous with each and every frame to assure the end result matches the vision in your brain.
Master filmmakers keep their attention on set and video playback through even the longest production days. Doing so pays off in important ways by making sure there’s never any accidental soda cans in the back of the frame or white noise coming from another area of set.
Less is more
While longer-form storytelling is still very effective in some circumstances, working with brands teaches us that succinct, engaging video content helps get the message across in the most effective way. Gone are the days where a viewer has the time or attention span to watch a 5-minute corporate video.
Proof of this? Popular video advertising medium Facebook counts a “view” if a user watches a piece of video content for 4 seconds. If brands are racking up metrics for such a short amount of time, it’s clear that short and sweet may truly be the best strategy.
Another study surveying agency’s video practices stated that 71 percent of their videos fell in between the one and three minute range. You’d be amazed what you can communicate in just 180 seconds.
Production schedules are your best friend
Production schedules can sometimes be the “bad cop” in the bad cop-good cop scenario on a video set. Good cop wants to try new things, follow inspiration, and maybe take an extra 10 minutes for lunch break. Bad cop wants you to follow a set schedule, get the exact shots you need and wrap on time. You need bad cop.
Why? Production schedules dictate the entire depth of a video piece – which shots you’ll need, the locations you’ll travel in order to achieve them and all other possible logistics in order to slam dunk your video project.
Our team’s most recent commercial shoot was 14 hours and flew by in the blink of an eye. The final product? Just 30 seconds.