This is the first part of a 3 part blog series on the video production process. Stay tuned in the coming weeks for the other two parts, Production and Post Production.
So, you have decided that you are ready to make a corporate, promotional, or training video. But where do you start? Well, simply put, you start with something known as pre-production.
Pre-production is the process of planning, scripting, budgeting, and scheduling your video project.
If you work with Point of View Media for your corporate, commercial, training or promotional video, you will find that we have streamlined the pre-production process into 4 simple steps. They are as follows:
1. Establish your goals or objectives.
2. Determine your budget
3. Develop a script or outline for your video
4. Planning (storyboarding / locations / schedule / delivery date)
So let's get into these in a bit more detail, shall we?
1. Establish Your Goals or Objectives
You have a reason for making this video, correct? Perhaps, in the case of a commercial video, you are trying to sell something or build brand awareness. Or, if you are making a corporate video, you are maybe trying to teach the audience a bit more about your company or brand. Maybe you are making a training video? In which case the goal is to train new hires or educate the audience in some way.
No matter what type of video you are making, it is very important that you have your main goal "set in stone" to get started. Try to focus your vision down to one concise sentence. This will make the rest of the process go much smoother.
2. Determine Your Budget
This is always a bit of a tough one. Mostly because you, as the client, may not be sure what the costs are to produce these videos. But chances are that you have a number in mind that you are willing to spend. And chances also are, if that number is reasonable, any good video production company should be able to work within your budgetary limits. Not all corporate videos have to cost tens of thousands of dollars. A lot can be done with a moderate budget if you're working with the right team (like us!).
Do keep in mind, however, that the cost has little to do with how long you want your video to be and more to with what is involved. In other words, a 10 minute corporate video can be relatively cheap if it's just, say, a "talking head" video (someone just talking to the camera). But a 1 minute promotional video can cost thousands or even tens of thousands if there are multiple locations or travel required. Or if the video needs a lot of animation or something more time-consuming like that.
So, just be willing to be reasonable with your needs when you determine your budget. And remember that smart planning can go a long way when it comes to keeping costs low!
3. Develop a Script or Outline
Now you are at the stage of outlining your project in a bit more detail.
Will your corporate or promotional video require speaking parts? This could be actors, company spokespeople, or a voice over. If it does require speaking parts, you will need a script. Perhaps you don't have a script completely written or developed. That's ok! If your project requires it and you don't know where to start with that, your production company should be able to help. At Point of View Media, we have a stable of fantastic scriptwriters on hand that can help bring your vision to life.
Oftentimes though, a corporate video does not need an actual script. The video might be driven by visuals alone. Or it can contain clips of non-scripted interviews with customers, employees, or other subjects. In this case, all your project needs is a good outline. This can be a detailed outline that contains visual cues, or just a general outline stating what you want the video to look like. Don't fret if this sounds daunting! Your production company will help with this.
Now that you've established your goals, budget and script, it's time to get down to the nitty gritty, the planning. At this stage, your production company will start to create storyboards, and work with you to figure out production locations and create a schedule for your production.
Storyboards are visual representations of your final product. They are literally drawings of what the final video will look like. Actual storyboards are not always needed for every project. Some projects may be visually driven solely by what is known as "b-roll" footage. This is just footage that gets shot on location on the production days. Since you don't always know what footage will be captured, you can't really storyboard it ahead of time! At most, for a project like that, you or your production company could create an outline with descriptive video cues stating what type of footage to show.
For more in-depth projects that have detailed scripts already prepared, storyboard drawings should be created for every shot. This gives you a very good idea of what shots are needed during production. From these storyboards, your production company can create what's known as a shot list that lists all of the required shots for the production.
At this point, you also need to figure out your production locations for your corporate, promotional, commercial or training video. This location could be as simple as an office space, or alternatively, you may need to travel to multiple locations to capture what's needed. These locations will need to be notified that production will be taking place there.
Schedule and Delivery Date
Now that you have your shot list and locations out, you will work out a production schedule. This essentially means planning the dates that to shoot the footage, interviews, B-roll, etc.. You will make sure that all required locations are available on the planned dates, and that all location preparation will be done accordingly.
You will also need to figure out your delivery date. This is essentially the completion date for your video. Having this date will help to create the production and post production schedules.
And that's pretty much it for the pre-production process!
Though it may seem overwhelming, it really doesn't have to be. A good corporate video production company (such as Point of View Media, for example!) will help you with every step.
Proper planning at the pre-production stage will ensure that the rest of your video project will run smoothly and that your end product will be a video that both you and your production company will be very happy with!
In upcoming blog posts, we will discuss the production and post-production stages of a corporate video project.
UPDATE: READ MORE ABOUT "PRODUCTION" HERE!
I did not mean for this blog title to rhyme. Honest.
So, as usual, it's been awhile since the last blog post. It's hard as a small business to keep up with all the updates sometimes! But here we are, at the end of another year. I figured this is as good a time as any to show you some highlight projects from 2019. So here goes!
Vision Creative/MIC Medical Imaging
The year started off with some videos for our friends at Vision Creative. Their client, MIC Medical Imaging, was in need of some information videos to display on their website and in clinic lobbies to explain some of the more common imaging procedures. These videos provide valuable insight for patients who may not know exactly what their procedure entails.
The videos were all shot in one day at MIC's fantastic Century Park facility. They can be seen in MIC clinics and on the MIC website.
University of Alberta - Healthy Campus Unit
We were contacted in the spring by the University of Alberta's Healthy Campus Unit to produce a couple of videos. The first one was to demonstrate how to build a workout using the Physical Activity Lending Kits which are available to borrow from any U of A library.
For this video, we used a U of A student as the instructor. It was shot in an exercise studio in the Van Vliet Complex on campus.
Edmonton West Primary Care Network
Rounding out the spring and heading into summer, we received the call again from our friends at the Edmonton West Primary Care Network. They once again needed to produce a video to coincide with their annual report to the community. The video showcases some of their unique programs and patients.
This one was shot over a period of a few weeks. It can be seen on the EWPCN website homepage.
Vision Creative/MIC Medical Imaging
Once again, in late summer, Vision Creative got in touch with us to work with MIC medical imaging. This time, it was to produce some motion graphic spots for Edmonton Oilers and Edmonton Oil Kings hockey games. These spots are shown on Edmonton Oilers televised games, as well as on screens throughout Rogers arena during all Oilers and Oil Kings home games.
We love producing motion graphics. And for this one we even got to utilize a little bit of 3D animation, which is always fun!
Town of Calmar
Rounding out the year, another highlight was working with a new client, the Town Of Calmar. They contacted us to produce a few videos to promote growth in their community. The first video that we produced promotes residential growth and highlights the new community of Southbridge Crossing located on the south end of town. The second video that we created promotes the community of Calmar in general. This is a great little town with a lot to offer!
We have already been in talks with the Town of Calmar to produce some more videos in the coming months. So stay tuned!
So that's 2019 in a nutshell at Point of View Media! There was quite a bit more going on around here throughout the year. But these are just a few of the stand out projects that we had the pleasure of producing. There's nothing better than working with old clients / friends. And, of course, we also love meeting new clients!
If you or your business requires corporate video, promotional videos, web videos, training videos, motion graphics, or really any professional video production in general, then let's talk!
We'd love to put you and your business in our 2020 highlight reel!
Nope, it's not a joke. This really happened.
On a hot, sweaty, bug-infested day in July, history was made in Southern Alberta.
Well, okay, maybe not history. But a little music video was made.
We decided we needed a challenge. Something to take us out of our usual day gig of shooting corporate videos, promotional videos, and training videos. Not that we don't love doing these, but sometimes you just need to step out of the box and do something that is just, well, fun as heck! This is actually the third video we have shot for Punch Drunk Cabaret and they are always a blast.
So, bright and early on July 25, 2016, the boys from PDC, a fine actress/model named Nina, a fantastic drone operator (and all around nice guy) named Larrie, and a crew of two from POV all hopped in a van and headed to Hanna, Alberta. Well, actually Delia, Alberta to be exact. If you've never been, the landscape down there is breathtaking and was the perfect backdrop for the story we were shooting.
Speaking of the story, the treatment for the video was dreamed up by Bandmeister Randy B of PDC. It follows a Beekeeper (and a couple of odd friends) in search of his bride, the beautiful Queen Bee. The three embark on a day and night journey that takes them through fields, forests, hills, and even through a vast canyon in the Badlands. The video will also have scenes of the band performing the song, titled "Beard of Bees", live in an eclectic "barn turned stage" setting. These scenes were actually shot in June at Randy's family farm located just outside of Wetaskiwin, Alberta. Randy and his wife Debi worked tirelessly to turn a boring old barn loft into a stage fit for rockabilly royalty (which of course PDC are!). And their efforts paid off - it looked great on film!
So, back to Southern Alberta. It was hot. Like 29C hot (over 30 with humidity. Oh yeah, it was humid too!). There were bugs. Soooooo many friggin' bugs. And in this environment, we lugged camera gear up steep hills, through swamps, forests and fields, and even down into a mountainous canyon. Our "cast" endured these conditions while in full costume and makeup (with both Randy and Capt. Sean E. Watts in full 3 piece suits, and Terry "Sawbones" Grant in a long, heavy Clergyman's robe and hat). Our poor bride, "Queen Bee" (played by Nina May Laderoute) had to climb a very steep hill in the height of the hot afternoon wearing a long dress, veil, and a whole bunch of makeup! All four of these people were nothing but professional. I never once heard a grumble or complaint. It was so nice to work with a crew of people that were just focused on making a great video. In the end, it was so worth it! The shots we were able to gather look amazing, purely thanks to the setting we were shooting in. It's pretty hard to make something that beautiful look bad!
Oh yeah, and speaking of the landscape, what better way to catch some of it than from the air! That's where Larrie Thompson came in. Larrie is an old friend of the band, and also happens to be a very accomplished photographer. He also owns himself a drone! The original plan for the video was to only include a couple of drone shots for effect. But the country was so beautiful, the weather so perfect, and Larrie did such a bang-up job shooting, that we will likely be using many drone shots in the final edit!
I also mentioned that there were two of us from Point of View. Tagging along to help out was my right-hand woman (who also happens to be my wife!), the one and only Crystal of Crystal Puim Photography. She is always a great help, and this day was no different. Even though she was feeling a little under the weather, she stepped up and helped out with lugging equipment, coordinating people, and most importantly, keeping me fed and watered! I couldn't do these long shoots without her!
All in all, it was a long (very long - 20 hours to be exact), hot, sweaty, exhausting day. One that called for an 11 pm celebratory feast at the Drumheller McDonald's. The night time drive home brought close encounters with deer and foxes, and a lot of winding through many of Alberta's secondary highways. But we made it back to Edmonton around 2 am (we left Edmonton at about 6 am the previous morning).
I want to take this time to thank everyone involved for their dedication and hard work. We are in the heavy throes of editing now and so far, it looks great!
Stay tuned for the final product some time in September.
Until next time,
Admittedly, blogging is kinda hard for me! I get caught up with production stuff, editing, bookkeeping, and social media. These things tend to eat up most of my time. Oh yeah, and I suppose I have to leave some time for family, friends, and a life!
But, I am back and will be more on top of this whole blogging thing from here on in.
So, what have we been up to at Point of View? Well, mostly producing great corporate videos, of course! Over the last year or so we have had the pleasure of working with great clients like The City of Edmonton, Landmark Homes, Bedrock Homes, APEGA, The University of Alberta, The Edmonton Music Awards, and many more! We have been very busy and that's just the way like it!
Moving forward, we have some more projects scheduled with The City of Edmonton, a new video or two is in the works with our old friends at Got Stump Tree Services, and stay tuned for another blog post in the next few days about our latest music video shoot with the rag tag crew from Punch Drunk Cabaret. Here are a couple of teaser pics!
Onward and upward for POV!
So, you bought yourself a fancy new DSLR camera that shoots amazing HD video. You've got that spiffy new computer with a fresh copy of iMovie or Windows Movie Maker on it. Does this mean you are ready to make good quality videos?
Possibly. But not likely. Unless you really know what you are doing.
I have been telling people for years that a good carpenter can build a house with a $10 hammer. But just because you have a $200 hammer, does not mean you can build a house.
A good promotional video, corporate video, or training video requires so much more than a nice camera and some editing software to produce. It requires a lot of skill, knowledge, and of course experience. At Point of View Media, we could make a pretty darn good video using a cell phone camera and Movie Maker if we wanted to. How? We know what we are doing. Great lighting, shot composition, camera techniques, editing techniques, good audio...all of these factors are what make a great video. The camera is only a small part of the entire equation. Prices on high quality photo and video equipment have come down drastically over the last few years. This makes these products more accessible to everyone...not just us pros. Just go to a wedding nowadays, or a popular tourist destination, and look at the number of people carrying around big DSLR cameras with expensive lenses on them!
Now, don't get me wrong. Professionals like us are glad that prices are down! It has allowed us to provide the best quality possible, for much less than we had to pay just a few years ago. However, it has also started to dilute our industry in general. There are many people out there now that are very new to the business and frankly aren't providing good products. They bought one of these cameras, made a couple of home movies, and now they think they are professional video producers. Most of them have other jobs that they do during the week, and make their "professional" videos on the weekends!
So, what I am getting at is that you need to be careful when looking for a video production company for your next corporate or promotional video. There are many options to choose from. Some are very expensive, some are very cheap, some might even be free. But please remember the old adage "you get what you pay for". At Point of View, corporate video is what we do, all day, every day. We have been doing it for 13 years and we love it. We don't work other jobs. We have the knowledge, we have the experience, and yes, we have the equipment! One thing we do not have is high prices. We feel we are very affordable for the quality of products that we offer. Just check out our video samples page to see what we can do. And do not be afraid to contact us for more information. You may be surprised at what a good quality video will cost (Hint: it's probably less than you think!).
You are proud of your product or service. You should showcase it and promote it the best way you can. So when your friend, or neighbor, or nephew says that they can make you video...think twice.
A great video still takes a professional!
Just for your viewing pleasure, here's an example of what you could end up with if you do not hire a professional!
And here's what you can get when you hire Point of View Media.