Tips From London Video Production Company 2017-07-10T07:04:44+00:00

Tips From A London Video Production Company To Make Promotional Video Production Painless

Painless Video Production

Video production is a slow, clunky, cumbersome process. That’s simply the truth about the situation. It’s difficult enough to get video production started. Once it has, there’s almost no chance to make infrastructure changes.

What this means in practical terms is that once you’ve agreed to start production, you can not change things. You’ll be getting the script and video you agreed upon, with minor revisions done in post-production.

If you insist on changes, you’ll have to increase your budget for the process. Pre-production is expensive, and many things can’t be done without showing money up front. This is in stark contrast to most forms of digital marketing. Most other forms of online marketing involve only a small amount of time once you’ve set up the initial infrastructure.

What’s Covered In This Guide

The Checklist

  • Review other videos as examples

  • Create a basic script outline of your own, or even write the entire script

  • Finishing the brief

  • Choose a video producer that can perform the services you need

  • Review any extras

  • Set up a production timeline

Example Videos

This goal is a relatively easy step to perform. Find videos that look like what you want, and figure out what details you like. These opinions should be included in your brief. Make sure to analyse the videos thoroughly, in order to give a complete picture of what you’re ordering. The more specific and detailed your descriptions, the easier it will be to see them become a reality.

The analysis will also help you figure out other details.

In addition to just describing what you want, you’ll have a better idea of what steps are required to achieve your dreams.

Focus and Purpose

A video producer needs a good, in-depth brief in order to produce the right video. The tone of the brief needs to be straightforward. The instructions should be clear. Don’t presume that a step is common sense.

  • A. You should break down what you want as if explaining it to a child.
  • B. The brief should also set up boundaries for the process.

Ensure your video production company understands what areas they can use for filming, and whether or not something needs to be blurred out or kept off-camera. Don’t just say “keep filming to the east area of the building” when what you mean is that you want the video filmed in a specific parking lot. The more specific the instructions, the easier it will be for everyone.

A good brief can also be an excellent way to entice a highly skilled production company. If your brief shows a certain amount of creativity and understanding of production, a production company might come asking you to hire them!

Briefs Should Be Just That – Brief

Detailed instruction is excellent. Long, rambling instructions are not. No production company wants to spend time trying to parse 10-page long instructions.

Once you’re interviewing production companies, your brief should be slimmed down to specific, on point instructions. You are a marketer, after all. The video maker can realise your vision, but it’s up to you to get across that vision. In essence, you can treat your video production company as the first potential client. Get your message across to them as quickly and efficiently as possible.

Requesting creative input from a production company is fine. However, creative consultancy is a separate job from video production. Production companies are exactly that. Businesses that make a tangible thing. The creative side is its own process, and should be treated as such.

One of the downsides of video marketing is that it’s a relatively new profession. While there was plenty of video advertising via television and movies, it was easier to tailor to a specific market. People often want to perform video marketing in-house, but due to the tender age of the profession, most competent production artists who want in-house jobs are already working in those positions for other companies. So if you want a high-quality video produced, you’ll either have to poach staff from those companies, or you’ll need to ensure your brief is quick, efficient, and clearly stated.

The Brief

So what is a brief? The simple answer is that it’s an outline of the production project. The brief should function as a basic template of what you want.

It should allow the video production company to easily fill in the pieces and build a proper production strategy. It will be even easier if you follow this suggested format:

  • Introduction – The introduction paragraph should be a general overview of what your company or group actually does. It should give the production company a basic understanding of who you are and what you’re trying to accomplish.

  • State Your Goals – Remember, video marketing is often part of a larger marketing campaign. Make sure to explain the goals of the video, and only the video. If you describe too much of the overall campaign, it might cause confusion. Alternatively, if the video is supposed to have multiple goals, that should be stated. However, make sure what you want isn’t too complicated to convey in a simple message.

  • Proposed Length – This should be self-explanatory. You don’t have to be specific, and in fact, it’s better if you’re more general. It’s much easier to meet a video length of “3 to 4 minutes” than “3 minutes and 27 seconds”

  • Style Desired – Make sure to describe what you want regarding style. Do you want your video to resemble a big budget action film? Would you like your video to invoke the feel of a documentary? Give a brief description during this part.

  • Important Keywords – Search engine optimisation is important, even in video marketing. Make certain you have included a list of optimised keywords.

  • Example Videos – If you’re having a difficult time describing what you want in words, offering a video and saying “like in the part at 2 minutes in”. It’s a production company’s job to know how to produce the video, all you should need to do is give them instructions.

The Script

Your video project needs a solid script so that you can show prospective producers exactly what sort of video you want to create. The script is, more than any other component, the piece which will give your company or organisation a distinctive voice. This reflects the way you want to present your organisation to others.

Do you want to present yourself formally? Do you want to use humour or emotion? Are you incorporating hard data? An experienced video producer should get a good idea of what you’re aiming for by reviewing your script. Ideally, you’ll have a complete script finished before you go looking for a video producer. This is not an absolute necessity, though, and you can get good results with a partial script that communicates the gist of your goals. A good producer will be able to refine your script and make constructive suggestions that will improve your final product.

It’s important that you have a firm idea of the message you’re aiming for before you start the production process. Clarity at the beginning will pay off in a big way by avoiding hassles and confusion once work gets started.

Video Length

The ideal length for a marketing video is a hotly-contested topic among professionals in the field. As a general rule of thumb, keeping your videos short is a good idea. Keeping yourself under the two-minute mark is good; getting under 90 seconds is that much better.

You’ll need to aim for even shorter lengths if you intend to use a paid distribution channel like YouTube’s video ad network. According to a study conducted by Wistia, viewership rises by 50 percent when a video is cut from two minutes to one.

Read Out Your Script

Reading what you’ve written is a rock-solid editing technique that works for every sort of writing, and it’s especially helpful when you’re scripting a video. Language can change dramatically when it’s read aloud. A live reading will give you a better understanding of where your script is confusing or awkward and allow you to improve it.

TIP FOR SCRIPTING: In general, expect your video to last one second for every three words of the script.

A video script should be structured in the same way as a professional newspaper article, with the most vital information presented at the start. This is not the venue for an artistic, cinematic structure which conceals your key points until the end of your video. Every second your video goes on is losing you potential viewers, per the Wistia study. Front-load your key points as early in your script as possible. This maximises the reach of your message and keeps your audience as wide as it can be.

The ideal video will have a “hook” embedded within the first 10 seconds of screen time. This is something engaging that will attract the viewers’ interest and compel them to keep watching. Ten seconds is by no means the best you can do. If your video is headed to a competitive medium like YouTube, deploying your hook within five seconds is a good goal to aim for.

Gather Honest Feedback

No one editor or reviewer can catch every mistake. This makes it valuable to seek feedback from others. Once again, reading your script out loud will help to preview the message in its proper form. Your critic should hear the script in a manner that’s as close to the final audience as possible.

Solicit completely candid and honest feedback from your critics. Remember that even negative feedback serves a purpose by allowing you to craft a more compelling video in the end.

Rewriting Is Essential

No good script ever appeared perfectly polished in its first draft. You should prepare yourself for an extended process that involves multiple drafts in order to refine your words.

Be merciless and detailed when you’re rewriting. Brevity is your goal, so you need to question every word in your script. If you can convey your message without it, cut it out.

Trim your script down to the absolute minimum without omitting vital information or losing the tone you’re aiming for. Subject your script to one last editing pass after you think it’s done.

Picking Your Producer

The producer you select to bring your video to life is going to have an enormous impact on the finished product. They become your partners in a genuine sense, so you need to weigh multiple factors before picking a producer carefully. Cost is always important, but the following variables count for a lot as well:

  • What quality has the producer brought to previous work? (Assess this by reviewing sample videos.)

  • Does the producer have experience with the same style, feel, look, and voice you want to see in your video?

  • How easy is it to communicate with the producer? How quickly do you receive responses to your questions? The turn-around times you experience during the selection process will set the standard for your collaboration when the video is being produced.

  • How comfortable does the producer make you feel? Even short videos can become complex productions which involve considerable feedback. You need a partner who welcomes your input and makes you feel at ease.

You need to collect three key items from each producer you put on your shortlist:

  1. Pitch/Response. The producer will have responded to your brief. Does it demonstrate an understanding of your requirements and expectations?
  2. Portfolio. How do you feel about the sample work the producer has provided?
  3. References. How do past clients feel about your prospective producer? Do they have a verifiable history of client satisfaction?

Review Extras Carefully

The odds are good that you see your video as a single product you’re purchasing from a manufacturer. Your producer may see things differently and might consider some components as extra items for which you need to pay extra fees.

You’ll want to verify the inclusion of all the parts of your video in the price quote your producer gives you. It’s a good idea to explicitly call out the following items in your brief and then look for them in the producer’s response:

  • Voice Over: Are you expecting a professional narrator?
  • Music: Does your video need background music?
  • Graphics: These are sometimes called “motion graphics.”

Being able to complete each step on the checklist allows you to put together a video production strategy.