How much of your last event budget was allocated to video? Visual media has never been so popular and a well-made production will pay dividends long after the event has finished.
Nothing creates a better impression than a high-quality video showing the latest hot topics being discussed at your event. So following on from our recent blog about event marketing, I’m diving deeper into video by sharing our tried-and-tested tips.
Well-made videos can extend the life and scope of your event - as a recap for delegates, to reinforce or extend learning, and to broaden the audience beyond those who attended. They create greater engagement than text, not least for mobile users who can easily digest content on the go.
Here are my 10 tips to get the most out of your next video project:
1. Engage professionals
If you are investing in a big event, then it makes sense to use professionals to broadcast the outcomes to the world. Hand-held footage from camera phones may be cost-effective but looks amateurish and makes a poor impression, whereas a high-quality, polished film will show off your event in the best possible light.
2. Take a team approach
Broaden your scope by engaging more than one crew - a team of videographers will enable you to capture a range of footage. This way you can have both static and roving crews recording the key moments of the day, providing you with content that can be used for a variety of purposes.
3. Planning is key
High-quality video is an investment and should form an integral part of your event planning. If your objective is to attract people to future events, or share content with those who were unable to attend, then you need to plan how to capture the substance of the day, not just the style.
Use the agenda for the event as your starting point, and don’t leave decisions about what to film until the day of the event. Deciding your purpose and desired outcomes in advance ensures that the footage you capture will be focused.
4. Housekeeping and due diligence
It’s always sensible to dot the ‘i’s and cross the ‘t’s. Filming is much more likely to go smoothly if you have visited the venue to research suitable interview locations, gained the right permissions from all stakeholders and informed the venue team of your filming plans. Follow these principles and you won’t get caught up in red tape further down the line.
5. Be organised
Good organisation means considering every factor - creating and sharing a schedule with relevant parties, working out locations and shot types, having a running order of interviewees. The more detailed the plan, the better the outcome will be.
It is a good idea to prepare your questions in advance - ask for opinions on industry trends and the main talking points of the event. A useful strategy is to ask everyone the same 3 questions, which can make for great single-topic videos.
6. Stepping up as director
If you are a novice director this may seem daunting, but remember you are the subject-matter expert. Leaving a film crew to their own devices could mean that you end up with footage that is irrelevant, so step up and take charge!
7. Choosing your interviewees
It is essential to plan in advance who you wish to interview; a good strategy is to source 10 key people. High value VIPs, industry leaders and key figures who might be customers of your client, will attract and engage your target audience. Do your research (try Linkedin) and let them know beforehand that you would like to capture their thoughts on camera. Share your questions and advise them when and where filming will take place.
8. Be Parky, not Paxman
Great interviews may look casual but actually the more organised you are, the better the outcome will be. People perform best when they feel comfortable, so give your subjects time to prepare. Seeing you confident and in control will put them at ease.
For spontaneous interviews, giving your subjects a chance to gather their thoughts will produce better quality responses, so have questions pre-written on cue cards and give them 5 minutes to prepare. It can make all the difference.
This is a collaborative process so be clear with your videographers about roles and expectations. If you planned filming carefully, editing will be much easier as you should have a range of high quality, focused footage from which to choose.
The videographers will produce a rough cut following the flow of the interview. As content manager, selecting the strongest piece is down to your judgement so ensure this is clear. It is helpful to have agreed upfront which people and topics you wish to include. This will support the editing process and help produce the best outcomes.
10. Sharing your content
Selecting the right content for the right purpose is key to getting a good ROI. Whether it’s a showreel, talking heads or sharing learning, if you’ve planned and filmed it well, you should end up with quality content fit for a variety of purposes.
But what to share with whom? Bearing in mind confidentiality where appropriate, learning videos can be shared with delegates and used for blogging content, talking heads can be sent to industry contacts to share the buzz from your event, and a showreel works well on social media platforms.