You’ve heard it, seen it and probably know that you need to start using video in your business. If you’ve made it this far then, you are about begin the adventure of producing your first video. In this guide I’m not going to tell you how to make a blockbuster film, I’m going to tell you the down and dirty how-to guide on making your first video in-house on the cheap.
Step 1: What’s Your Purpose?
Before you grab your camera, you need to decide what the goal of your video is. What are you hoping to accomplish with this video? Why are you making it? Once you have your purpose clearly defined, we can move on.
Step 2: Concept
Gather your co-workers, team members, friends or family members and begin to brainstorm ideas. Write down everything, and no idea is a bad idea. After 45 minutes look at all your thoughts and start to strike out concepts that don’t align with your purpose. Are you able to achieve your goal with this idea? If so let’s keep it going!
Step 3: Write the Script
With your winning concept at hand let’s transform this idea into a script. Using a free program such as Celtx you can write in script format at home. Be descriptive and include dialogue where needed. Any extra time you spend planning your shoot will save you time and money while shooting.
Step 4: Making the Shoe Fit
Now that your script is complete let’s tailor your text to fit your project’s budget. Think of the props, locations, potential actors and crew members assets you have access to for free. If your neighbor has a new Porsche chances are he would love to get in on camera to show it off, or maybe your uncle owns a beach house you could use as a location. Using your network of connections you can cut costs by pulling out the friend card.
Step 5: Planning for your shoot
Before your shoot day make a list of all the shots that you need to get tomorrow. Then list them out in the order that makes the most sense to shoot them in. Filming chronologically is easy, but not always the most efficient way to working. By breaking down your shots by location and which actors are involved, you can cut the length of your shoot day in half and have a more organized shoot.
Step 5: Shoot Day
You have a smartphone that has a pretty decent camera on it so we can use that to film. If you have a budget, I would recommend getting some microphone. The low-quality video is passable on the Internet, but low-quality audio is a quick way to get someone to bounce off your video.
Hopefully, your friends showed up to help you with your shoot. It’s your job as the director to delegate responsibilities to allow you to focus on the creative vision of the product. Assign someone to do camera, lighting, sound, props or even just wrangle actors when they’re needed for scenes. There is a reason why movies have 100+ person crews, the more help you can get the better!
Step 6: Edit
After your shoot day dump all your footage onto a computer and back it up onto a second hard drive. Once again back it up! Once your files are safely backed up download some editing software whether it’s iMovie, Adobe Premiere or even Windows Movie Maker. Import your footage and begin cutting away. With your script at hand cut your video to match your script plus any additional changes that may need to be made. Once your video is complete export the video in H264 or a similar format that works well with the platform you’ll be posting your video to.
With your video published it’s time to promote! Don’t expect your video to gain a million views overnight; you need to be actively driving traffic to your videos whether through social media posts, advertisements or email blasts. Once your video is entirely distributed, it’s time to rinse and repeat. The video marketing and production process require a lot of trial and error. You may not hit the first video out of the park, but over time you will learn from your mistakes, begin to improve and discover what resonates with your audience for maximum exposure.
Make sure you send us your videos we would love to see how they turned out. If you have any questions about the video process, or need some help from one of our trained producers, don’t hesitate to reach out either.