For many of us, we understand what it takes to record some quick clips and post them on the internet for our followers.
But what needs to be considered is, are we posting content that our followers even want to watch?
For some, i.e. influencers and celebrities, it doesn’t really matter if their video quality is perfect, they’ll still attract viewers.
For small business owners though, these things matter. Imagine scrolling through your Facebook feed to see a dimly lit/poor sounding video of the CEO of a marketing company … yeah you’re not stopping in your tracks to watch it.
Improving the quality of what we produce is extremely important for the consistency of videos and improving on viewers participating in viewing them. Let’s dive into why using video is important before diving into the meat and potatoes!
Why Video Content is Important in 2020
It’s no secret that video rules the internet these days. Whether it’s a TikTok video or a series on YouTube, we’re constantly consuming video in some form.
Let’s Look at Some Statistics on Video*
- 81% of businesses are using some form of video production for their marketing needs.
- Mobile video consumption rises by nearly 100% each year.
- By 2020, online videos will make up more than 82% of all consumer internet traffic — 15 times higher than it was in 2017
- 59% of executives say they would rather watch a video than read text.
Okay so what does this all mean?
Let’s take a look at how these stats immediately play into video marketing.
- Videos attach 300% more traffic and help to nurture leads.
- A website is 53 times more likely to reach the front page of Google if it includes video.
- Video increases organic search traffic on a website by 157%
- 25% of companies publish videos every week.
- 97% of marketers say video has helped users gain a better understanding of their products and services.
Just viewing these quick statistics, it is undeniable that video rules the web – and it’s even more eye opening for business owners that they can no longer sit on their thumbs and refuse to up their production quality.
Making Our Videos Better
There seems to be a common fear and even more-so misunderstanding of why certain videos are “Good” and others “Stink”.
The 3 key Production Techniques
More importantly we’re going to talk about how we can use the simple tools around us to make our video quality sky rocket.
First and foremost, audio is the biggest factor in immediately upping your video quality. No one … and I mean NO ONE wants to sit through a video that has poor audio. Whether it’s outdoors and windy/the dogs are barking in the background/for some reason the person recording the video is sitting next to their AC – it’s just unbearable. There are some EASY solutions for audio and it should be the first thing on your checklist when building up your new personal “production” house.
A lavalier microphone or lavalier (also known as a lav, lapel mic, clip mic, body mic, collar mic, neck mic or personal mic) is a small microphone used for television, theatre, and public speaking applications in order to allow for hands-free operation.
These microphones can be used for our personal videos ALWAYS. Sometimes in a more formal corporate production/commercial or in film and TV we’ll of course hide this type of microphone, but for us who cares if we see it?
These microphones are excellent and now even come with smart phone compatibility!
A shotgun microphone is a highly directional microphone that must be pointed directly at its target sound source for proper recording.
These microphones are a little bit more on the pricy side, they also typically require an XLR hookup. However, if we learn how to utilize these, they provide a beautiful bass-filled natural sound for our videos.
There’s a company called Blue Designs which created the famous snowball microphone. This style of mic is traditionally awesome looking, and the quality of the audio is spectacular. With this setup, we’ll see the microphone in our frame but it’s pretty darn cool, so depending on what video content you’re producing, it’s huge in the vlogging/podcast world.
We should always be attempting to avoid using our on-camera and or phone built in microphone. We want our videos to be attractive, but that doesn’t just mean the image quality. What does it matter if you have a 4k image if the person viewing your video can’t stand the sound of your voice?
Video composition is an easy game changer and once you understand it, you’ll subconsciously start grabbing epic framing! Let’s look at a few examples of good and of course, bad composition.
We’re making the video aesthetically appealing by learning how to properly frame ourselves. It’s the little things that make the big difference in separating you from your competition.
Just like audio, lighting is one of the major keys when we look at improving our video content. Dark, grainy videos are gross, and people don’t want to watch them or you for that matter. We’re not saying you need to spend thousands of dollars – but a few hundred (IF THAT) will go a long way! Let’s break down some of our frames.
Depending on your composition (Discussed above) Will determine your lighting set up. We can see in camera that this man is framed left, so the key light will come from the right side of our camera (and vice versa if he were framed on the right side). The key light is our main source, and most powerful light to make sure that we look good and full of life!
We don’t want our web videos for advertising to be too dramatic, we’ll want to add a fill light for this. The fill light is designed to just lift the dark area of the face caused by the intensity of your key light. There are two ways to approach the fill light, for a fully even lit face, match the key light intensity. Or, for a more artsy and contrasty look, maybe take the light intensity from 100% to 25-50% to just lift that portion of the face a little bit.
Let’s look at some lighting alternatives, let’s say if we’re in a rush or can’t quite afford a setup just yet.
Practical lighting is the lighting all around us. The lamp on your desk, the big window in your kitchen – a light source that is around us in everyday scenarios that we use to our advantage. So start to experiment and see what works! But remember, harsh light is not flattering, so find a nice soft light source.
So, after seeing how practicals can be used, there is no longer any reason for dark and grainy videos!
There are simple techniques that can be implemented so that we can begin to produce better videos on our own. Sometimes a full on production team may be needed for larger projects, but if you can master these 3 key areas of producing a video, you’re already doing more than most of your competitors and it’s going to show!