Step by Step Video Production for Beginners
Whether you’re planning your first corporate video production or you intend to produce video content for your website or blog. The steps you take in planning and preparing your crew to properly produce the video will make a major difference. This thorough video Production for Beginners guide should eliminate stress, and aid you in your video producing quest.
Plan your content
Well planned content, that targets the right audience and drives viewers to take the appropriate actions to meet your goals will be most successful, but it takes time to plan and prepare for. We’re outlining the step by step video production for beginners processes to help you understand what it takes to create the best video content.
If you’ve never created a video before, the process and steps to production can seem overwhelming. You have to write the brief and then the script and find a film crew and film the takes and edit, and… the list goes on and on. If you miss a step, or you choose not to properly plan for a step, you can spend hours, weeks or longer going back to fix the production.
If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.
That’s why it’s important to tackle the production process upfront and make a defined plan complete with step by step details before you get started. This post will guide you through the steps of video production for beginners. We offer helpful tips along the way that will make your production run smoothly.
Follow along and, if you have questions or need help, give Beverly Boy Productions a call to discuss your video project further.
Step 1: Define Objectives
The first major step in any video production is to define the goals and objectives of the video. What do you want out of the content you are creating? More sales? More leads? An educated audience? Something else?
Define the goal of your content using SMART goal setting- Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-Bound. Your goals should follow this format for all of your content, video included.
Figure out your goals for the video
If you’re not real sure what goals and objectives you want filled by your video content, consider a problem that your business could solve or is already solving for your audience. Use this to define a set of goals for the video content. Perhaps you want to educate your audience about your products or services to help them move through the awareness funnel. Or, maybe you want to create a video that finalizes the trust in your business so that the viewer makes a purchase.
Measure your production goals
Make sure you have set measurable goals for your video so that once you have produced the content you have a way to look back and see if it was a success or not. If you don’t set measurable goals, you have no real way of knowing whether the production is successful or not.
Step 2: Define Your Audience
You need to define an audience for the video and research the audience to ensure that you are targeting them appropriately. You are going to create completely different content for each audience style. If someone is in the educational and awareness stage of the funnel, the content you send to them will be much different than what you would deliver to someone that has already purchased. It’s vital now to know your audience, deeply.
Know your audience
What engages your audience? What is most appealing to them? Who is your audience? Are they young, old, rich, poor, educated, not? All of these factors should be defined as you build a plan for your video production. The greater the insight you have now, the better you can produce content that appeals to the audience.
Step 3: Determine a Core Message
What message do you want to deliver with your video content? You must have a solid message that you expect your target audience to hear when they see your video. In defining the core message think about the following:
- What do you want the audience to do?
- What do you want the audience to think or feel?
- What do you expect the audience to take away from the video?
The message is not complicated. This should be a simple overview of the purpose of the video. For instance, you may want the audience to sign-up for a free trial or you may want them to make a phone call to set an appointment. Whatever the core message is, you must have a plan to incorporate that along with a call-to-action into your video content.
Step 4: Define Video Strategy
Now that you have a basic message and you know your audience, it’s time to define a strategy for your video content. This is the time when you will define the following:
- How you will create the video content – will it be created in-house or by a video production agency?
- How you will distribute the content – will it be shared on your website, through a corporate blog, on social media, in email?
- How you will continue to reuse the content so that it keeps working for you and you gain maximum exposure and ROI.
- How you will achieve the overall goals of your video content while remaining within the budget that you set and deadlines for completion of various tasks.
The video strategy will be similar to that of various other forms of content strategy. You need to have the who, what, where, when and why details hammered out and you need to plan your route of attack to make the most of the content once produced.
Step 5: Write Video Brief
In short, the brief should include the following:
- The objectives of the video.
- The target audience.
- The emotions you wish to compel by the audience.
- The core message of the video.
- The key takeaways of the video.
- The budget and deadlines.
Step 6: Begin Pre-Production
- Seeking inspiration from other videos.
- Ensuring the content idea is unique enough to attract interest.
- Reflecting on true audience insights.
- Approaching the content in a way that fits within the brief.
The video script should be detailed and include every word that you expect to be spoken on the set. If you’re not familiar with script writing, check out our other posts that provide detailed outlines on writing video scripts.
For a general idea of what to do, here’s an outline of tasks associated with writing the video script:
- Keep it human and conversational.
- Keep it engaging.
- Keep it interesting to the target audience.
- Keep it simple and use easy to understand context.
- Keep the script short, sweet and to the point.
- Take steps to edit and revise until you have the perfect word combinations.
- Make sure you are conveying the core message.
Your script may also include details on the location, actors, props and other valid information that will help in production later on.
Once the script is written, you produce a storyboard. This is a visual example of the idea that includes each shot in a way that encompasses the lighting, coloring, framing and transitions that will make up the film. The storyboard details all shots and offers insight into the overall look and feel of the video.
Finally, the last stage of pre-production is to plan and schedule the film shoot.
This requires several steps to be undertaking including:
- Location scouting.
- Film crew hiring.
- Actor casting.
- Equipment allocation.
- Makeup and costume hiring.
- Licensure and permissions for all fields.
- Contingency plan management.
- Call sheet writing and film schedule.
Step 7: Production
Production encompasses a single major step–capturing footage. During production the film crew comes together to capture professional shots and footage that will make the entire concept come alive. The detailed storyboard, brief, and script are used to produce the footage.
Production is overseen by the Director who ensures that:
- Everyone on camera is relaxed and appears comfortable with their performance.
- The video lighting is proper and audio is in place.
- Footage is filmed in a manner that will make editing as easy as possible.
- The script and the storyboard are followed appropriately.
The director is a professional and knows how to work with the film crew and producer, so your job is to let the Director do his or her work. Now is the time for you to sit back and await the completion of your project.
Step 8: Post-Production
Several steps are associated with post production. This is the time when video footage is edited and all elements come together to produce the final project.
Editing consists of:
- Ensuring that the film is as short as possible without losing valuable information.
- The cuts are made in a way that makes the content easy to digest.
- The video is visually appealing.
- The B-Roll helps to make longer shots more engaging.
- The core message is properly delivered.
- The call to action encourages the audience’s appropriate action.
Get clear feedback
Now is the time to provide clear and concise feedback on the video content to ensure that the footage remains in line with the creative video brief. Do not make requests for edits or changes that fall out of line with the original brief.
At this point, the addition of graphics and special effects will take place. Not all videos will include special effects or generated graphics, but for those that do include these elements, the post-production process of incorporating them into the film takes place during editing or immediately after.
Once graphics have been incorporated in the production agency will begin to mix music and generate the soundtrack for the production. The audio will help the footage to achieve the overall desired effect evoking emotion from the audience as outlined in the original creative brief.
Music additions generally:
- Help to compliment the mood of the video.
- Backup the core message to get the point across.
- Are appropriate for the target audience.
- Follow along with the pace of the edit.
In order to incorporate music into the film you must either purchase rights or create your own unique music. For larger productions, the creation of new music is generally the accepted method. Following music, voiceovers are recorded. This is not necessary for all videos but will generally be required for larger productions.
When recording voiceover, the artist must be:
- Appealing to the target audience in some way.
- Able to read and interpret the script in a way that helps them to understand and relay the core message.
- An individual that has a clear and emotive voice that will produce sound that viewers will enjoy listening to.
Step 9: Finishing Up & Distributing the Video
Once all above items have been completed it is time to finish up the final formatting of the video and host it for viewers. You should already have a plan in place for hosting as this was determined when you created the initial brief.
The video is formatted when you have finalized the cut and you are satisfied with the visual and audio effects of the entire film. Formatting the video involves producing the quality and size footage for the appropriate host. Social media videos finish short, big screen productions are generally long. Most fall somewhere in between.
You can host the video on YouTube, Vimeo, your website, or offline. Once you have distributed the video to viewers you can set up any analytics and measuring tools that will help you to quantify the success of the video production. This includes using various analytics tools a well as your own data to determine success. Did you get more calls? Did you get more leads? Did you audience learn from the video–remember those key objectives you set early on? Now is the time to measure whether you achieved those objectives with your content on not.
Promote, promote, promote!
Promoting your video may help you to achieve your objectives, especially if you are looking for more of something (more calls, more traffic, more shares, more leads). The more people you can show the video, the greater your chance in reaching objectives IF the video was produced accurately.
Now that you know all of the step by step video production for beginners processes, you’re ready to make your first video. If you need help getting started, or anywhere along the way, give Beverly Boy Productions a call. We’re always happy to help out.