There are a number of factors that can affect the end result and budget in your online video. Here are a few to consider.
1. 80% of these productions is first working out what you want to say
For me, this is the most challenging part of your production, the script. And it can come in many different forms.
The script could be the result of various interviews of key stakeholders and employees in your company. What they say actually becomes the script scaffold of your story. So the questions you ask are crucial to ensure you arrive at the desired outcome.
It’s best to ask all people the same base questions, along with specific questions that relate to their area of expertise.
Because at the end of the day, everyone will answer the questions differently, so that is going to give you colour and variety in your story.
(One important thing to note is that when you are asking the questions, make certain the person answering adds a little bit of the question in the answer. Otherwise, when you take the question away you may end up with a reply that has no context).
Depending on how serious you want your video, sometimes it’s great to ask the interviewee if there are any anecdotes that they recall that adds to their positive view of the company. It could be an action under stress that resulted in a win for a client, or an employee’s view of the team spirit and respect that is prevalent in the company. All positives stories that can be dropped in to the timeline.
So once the story has been captured from your interviews, overlay footage needs to be captured, so that while the interview audio is running we cut away to show what the interviewee is talking about. That could be your office and factory, the workers engaged in the production process, talking with clients, showing off the work ethic or safety measures around the plant. This overlay, or B story, is vital to keep the viewer engaged in your video and you can never have enough. Here is an example of solid overlay.
And in this overlay could be some bits of gold. And that can come in the form of sound bites of employees talking to colleagues or clients, asides during piece of action or meeting, thereby adding yet another layer of interest and entertainment to your story.
Another script option is to capture your interviews but have an over-arching script written. This would be completed my a professional script writer who we would brief at the outset, based on your requirements and my assistance. This would then be recorded by a professional voice over talent (male or female). There is a budget consideration in this option. This corporate video applies this combination of interviews and over-arching voice over to good effect.
2. Things that can blow out your budget
Script is number one, as I mentioned above. If you can make the interviews your script, there’s a considerable saving. But also note that a professional third-person voice can add immense credibility to your image. It’s finding that balance. As with any production process, the more you out-source, the greater the cost. Keeping it in-house is cost-effective.
The number of locations you want to include in the video can also push your budget out…and living in Australia distance can be dollars. I had a client recently who had the product they manufactured positioned on mine sites throughout outback Western Australia. For me to go capture them all was going to be expensive, so it was decided for the client’s staff to capture them. One was pretty deft with the drone, another more than capable with a camera. The thing you need to be sure is they are briefed correctly, to ensure they capture footage that is aligned to the script and positive company image. If not time and money can get away on you.
You want animation or special effects added? Sure, no problem. But it will cost you. Bringing your dull logo to life can also be time-consuming and expensive. But there are many cool, cheap plug-ins that can integrate your logo into a snappy presentation. Many cost-effective ways and means to come across cool. Here’s a good example.
Stock footage can also get you out of jail, when you don’t have time or budget to go capture an exotic location. I recently completed a series of TV commercials for a national client and used three stock scenes at the beginning to each ad to highlight the respective states. So much cheaper than going to shoot it. But you need to make sure it’s in your budget.
The duration of your online video is a key element; the longer it is the more you need to capture, the longer the script, the more editing required.
Going back twenty plus years, I was creating corporate 15 minutes long. Ten years ago it had dropped to a 5-7 minute presentation.
Nowadays 90 seconds to 2 minutes 30 is about right. People are time-poor. Get in, educate, inform, entertain, engage, get out. Simple. This online video I created for Bupa, via Production House 90 secs, was cut from 2 mins 30, to 60 seconds.