Video blogging isn’t for everyone. You need to have the right equipment, commitment and passion.
The correct equipment means lights, cameras and then its action time and ensuring you get the basics right and avoiding making the basic mistakes.
This is the last article in a three part series where we look at how to put together a professional looking video on a budget.
So if you missed the first two you can quickly leap to them below.
Now that all the filming is done, we will look at how to compile and package your video so that it is professional and pleasant to watch.
Video blogs need to be set out like an article. It will have a main topic and then subsections within this.
A video blogger needs to be prolific; it can’t take hours to package your video each time so we recommend that you create a series of templates that you can reuse to define your subsections, title background screen and so on. These templates are made up of graphic elements that will give your videos a recognisable style and can include branding and contact details.
Remember that these backgrounds and templates can only work if you have shot the video with a blue or green screen chroma-key background, which can then be keyed out and replaced with graphic elements.
To begin with you can create your opening title screen backdrop. Remember to keep your introduction short and informative. Then you can add an animated title backdrop that introduces the speaker. This can be used for guest speakers too.
Talking Heads can be Boring
Most video blogs will use the “talking head” style but this can become visually uninteresting so create a series of backgrounds. Obviously they need to be relevant so you can make a neutral one that just has some texture, otherwise you can add pictures, video or a slideshow.
When making a list you can create bullet points next to the speaker, or even cut the speaker out completely and just keep the audio while listing the points. But what the speaker is saying and what you show doesn’t need to always be exactly the same, you could add an infographic, for example, that will enrich your point. Keep in mind the audience’s assimilation rate. This is how long it will take to absorb the information on the screen. You need to find a balance so that the viewer is happy that they have had time to understand what’s on the screen but not so long as to bore the viewer.
6 Common Mistakes and How to Avoid Them
There are a few simple things that can make all the difference to your video.
Sound is another import thing to focus on. First I want to focus on music and then I’ll just list some tips on how to adjust your audio in post-production. Adding music can give your video a lot of texture and an ambiance that can be very effective. But there are a few things to keep in mind.
- Firstly, be careful to find royalty-free music. It’s illegal to use copywritten music without paying a usually hefty royalty fee.
- Then you need to consider that the relationship between the subject matter and the speed or style of the music has to match. If I’m being really serious and talking quite slowly having something jaunty and fast in the background isn’t going to work. In the same way, if I’m talking excitedly about a subject I’m passionate about and this slow, poignant music is playing, it changes the whole atmosphere of the piece.
- If you are putting music behind a voice, you need make sure that it is soft enough so that we can still clearly hear the person speaking — if it’s too loud, the video is really messy. But it also can’t be too soft, which sounds like somebody left the radio on the other room.
- When there’s a pause in the narration you can push the music up. But also don’t be afraid not to have music. You can have silence when the speaker is on and then just use the music to bridge the sections.
- Really importantly, you need to make sure that the music corresponds with your subsections. Often people will put a song on, let it run and end and then add another, but it’s really jarring if this happens randomly in the middle of a section. Rather work backwards; put the end of the song at the end of a section and just fade the music in at the beginning, even if you are starting in the middle of the song. This sounds less jarring than ending in the middle.
- Make sure that your audio levels are consistent; they shouldn’t fade in and out or change at all and if you have picked up some ambient noise, try to soften it in postproduction.
That’s it for our tips for packaging an online video blog professionally. I hope you have got some good ideas out of this. Happy blogging!
About the authors: Francois Karstel is the owner of Sound Idea Digital, a full service digital agency. You can connect with him on Twitter @soundideadma, Robyn Bloch is a digital journalist at Sound Idea Digital. You can connect with her on Twitter @soundidea or visit: Sound Idea Digital