Online video is a great way to reach large audiences, but if it’s not done right it can actually harm the reputation of your company or organization. Here are five questions to ask yourself before making a video.
1. Can just anyone produce good video?
Anyone can produce a video, you say? You’re right! With better smartphones, cameras and camcorders hitting the market all the time, it’s easier than ever for people to produce video. But is it good video? While it’s convenient, video that comes right off of consumer devices is often shaky and dark. Too often it’s bad video, and it’s just as likely to end up on a ‘worst videos’ list as it is to promote your organization.
On the other hand, hiring a video production company will give you clean, smart footage. The thought that goes into makeing a successful video, like setting up B-roll cut-away shots and crafting intelligible scenes, will help you build your brand, without the shake.
2. Who turned out the lights?
For quality video, lighting needs to highlight the scenery and illuminate the subjects on screen. If your subjects are people, then the task becomes all the more difficult. Angles of light can cast unflattering shadows under a subject’s nose and chin, making them look like a character out of a horror movie.
Video producers know about lighting. They can predict what lighting they’ll need during day or night, outdoors or inside. They’ll bring their video expertise to the scene, setting up studio lights if they need to, in order to bring out the best in video production.
3. What was that noise?
Maybe you’ve shot good video on your smartphone. You wanted to capture that cute face your cat makes or your baby’s first word, and you got lucky. So you decided to take on a video for your company. The lighting was fine, the shake wasn't too bad and the moment you intended to capture came out just right.
Then you uploaded the video to a larger device. Playing the video back on your computer or TV screen revealed something you didn't notice before: a terrible background noise that distracted from your company value proposition or that one important message.
Sound is one of the most challenging aspects of creating a video, especially when you factor in the unknown. A professional will know what to do when things get noisy. They’ll know how to compensate for background noise, what microphones to use in loud rooms, and how to capture audio in blustery winds. Audio is one of the hardest things to fix, and you can spend hours listening to the same track over and over, trying to correct it. Why not save yourself the trouble?
4. Come on, why are you doing that?
Have you ever watched a video and immediately started laughing at how silly it looked? Video is a tricky medium. It showcases exactly how people look, sound and behave, while also being subject to problems like timing or color schemes. Let’s say the subject of your video wears a white shirt with a neon pink bow. On top of that, the only background you have is white. After the video is done, all you can see is the woman’s face and a neon pink bow floating in thin air.
A video company can help you avoid these issues. Not only will video professionals tell your subjects what to wear ahead of time, they’ll also plan to resolve any problems before the shoot. They'll think about background options and color schemes, and anticipate elements that could be distracting. They can also kindly tell people what to do with their hands and share advice for a flattering profile. Video companies can even take steps to ensure good timing for the shoot.
5. What was I thinking?
Even if you’re able to pull off a perfect video shoot, you may find the investment of time for video to be outrageous. It’s not uncommon for working professionals to spend hours combing over audio and visual components of video and painstakingly stitching the various scenes together in an appealing way.
Video production companies are accustomed to spending time and effort to produce quality video. On top of that, they have a good sense of storytelling. They’ll be able to combine the footage in a compelling way, choose the best quotes from the people who were filmed and get the action on screen. Video production companies will even be able to suggest music tracks and add a call-to-action button inside the frame.
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