Video production is an increasing priority for many organizations, whether it’s to promote their corporate message internally, provide e-learning opportunities for employees, or be an important part of their online marketing strategy. As the importance of video has increased, so too has the need for more professional video output. It is no longer good enough to film a senior executive reporting the company’s latest successes.
And the perfect place to learn some tips for improving the professionalism of business videos is, not surprisingly, the film industry. After all, they’ve had decades of honing their craft, so why not learn from them. You might not have the eye-watering budget of some Hollywood movies, but you can take advantage of some of their techniques.
Tell a Good Story
Don’t just make a business video for the sake of it. It would be best if you told a good story to engage the watchers. Even if your video is an e-learning course, you need to use realistic case studies and real-life scenarios that resonate with the audience. All the fancy special effects or cool music tracks won’t make up for a second-rate story. And that really is something we can learn from the film industry that is littered with failed films.
Think about who your audience is, and make sure to use music, props, etc., that are meaningful. As many multi-national companies do, don’t expect everyone watching to understand English if you have an international audience. Make sure you use subtitles on the video or, alternatively, use a professional voice-over in the relevant languages to be as inclusive as possible.
Use The Best Camera You Can
It’s fairly obvious that the quality of the camera being used to shoot the video will impact the final outcome’s quality. If you are using internal equipment or hiring video equipment, make sure it is of the latest specification. For a high-quality finish, you need to be filming in 4k as a minimum.
If you are employing an external videographer, don’t assume they will have the best quality equipment – check with them, and don’t forget to check their reviews and testimonials. If they have case studies of previous work, look at that to make sure the quality is what you would expect.
Hire or buy the best equipment you can afford or buy the services of the best professional videographer you can afford. An investment in business videos is an investment in the future growth of your company.
Research Different Microphones
Whether you are recording a voiceover to animation or series of slides or appearing on-screen as part of a business video, there’s a surprising amount to learn about how to ensure you sound good on the final video.
Poor quality audio won’t portray a professional image for your company, and audiences in today’s high-tech world are extremely discerning. They will judge your company by the quality of your audio and video output, not just by what you say and how you look.
As with camera quality, the microphone quality is also vital for high-quality output. There is a vast array of microphones to choose from, so some research is worthwhile. You may also want to use a pop filter to prevent the air that leaves your mouth as you speak, causing an unwanted popping noise.
Consider Microphone Technique
One way to up the quality of your output is to practice the microphone technique to perfect the process. Even the best quality microphone won’t help if your microphone technique is poor or if the microphone is not set up properly.
For instance, too little gain will result in a hissing sound, or standing too far away from the mic can make the voice sound echo’y. In contrast, closer to the mike will generate a fuller-sounding voice. A general rule used by professionals is to ensure your mouth is 20-30cm away from the microphone.
However, do some practice recordings with your mic to get the distance just right. If you hear breathing noises, then move further away, and if you get reverberations, move closer to the mic. The perfect distance is when you sound just as you would in normal conversation, but there are no additional noises that you wouldn’t expect (or pick up on) in a normal conversation.
Of course, your own natural volume also impacts, so it is often a matter of trial and error for each particular speaker. The main thing to remember is to keep a consistent level of volume and a consistent distance from the microphone.
The post-production of your video is also a factor that can make or break it in terms of professionalism. Much of the effort in the film industry goes into the post-production work. Special effects and music might be added, subtitles or closed captions, voiceovers in different languages, or accents might be used.
Some corporations will go so far as to use an American accent voice-over for their US target audiences and similarly an English accent voice-over for European target audiences. Post-production work requires just as much attention and the storyline, the visuals, and the sound for a high-end result.
Automated Dialogue Replacement (ADR) is a dubbing method and is also a film industry technique to consider. ADR can replace a small section of dialogue that is low quality or affected by background noises without having to reshoot a whole scene.
Consider A Professional Voice-Over Artist
Some business videos can benefit from using real employees and can provide a more personal feel. However, if you don’t have any staff members willing or able to take on the role of appearing in a business video, you could always consider using a professional voice-over artist.
They are well-acquainted with microphone technique and used to working with professional videographers and sound engineers. Some even have their own recording equipment and software to get the most out of their voices.
Don’t Forget To Market Your Videos
The film industry is a master at marketing their films and making them, and major movies will always come with a full-on marketing campaign so that you can learn from this. So when your professional video is complete, get to work marketing it with press releases, social media, internal emails, and more. That’s just as important, whatever the type of video being produced.
The film industry has a lot to teach businesses about creating great video content. When visual media is growing in popularity, it makes sense to take note of these tried and tested professional tips.
If you are interested in even more business-related articles and information from us here at Bit Rebels, then we have a lot to choose from.