In the world of digital marketing, video reigns supreme. Not only does it garner more…
When it comes to the world of video and coordinating a video production, the process of planning is an important step that should not be forgotten. If you fail to prepare properly, you and your team can end up wasting time and money for hours of unusable footage. No one wants to kick off video marketing initiatives that way!
Keep reading to learn our tips for coordinating a video production.
1. Define the Roles
When it comes to video production, there are so many details that it’s extremely important to lock down and define roles in the project early on to make sure every department gets the attention it deserves. There needs to be a delegation of duties as there isn’t a single approach to success. For most internal or DIY projects, a full on production team is not always practical or achievable.
We’ve outlined the five key roles of production and what department they should fall under. It is important to note that not one of these positions is more important than the other. Instead, they feed off each other and cannot work alone without input from the others. In some case, some of these roles will overlap and be played by the same person, but for the sake of this article, we’ll map them out separately.
Director: The one with the vision who manages the tone and creativity going into the project. This person communicates the creative needs of the project to the other team members. The Director is also the only one to converse with the actors while shooting, as to not confuse the talent.
Producer: The one who manages money and oversees the production, scales shoots up and down, coordinating logistics, schedules and locations. He or she also hires each crew member as well as keeps everyone fed (very important!)
Talent: Talent should always come as prepared as possible, ensuring a swift take every time the camera rolls.
Director of Photography: The visual consultant and camera operator for everything that’s composited on the screen. The DP is the person who will tell you what tools you’ll need to achieve your vision.
Editor: The person who puts it all together! He or she also needs a solid computer setup that can be trusted to deal with the large amounts of footage.
2. Set a Production Date and Do a Little Bit Every Day
Setting a production date is obvious when you are gearing up for a big project. Depending on the scope, you will want to have the foresight to know how far out to plan for. For example, if your production is a 20+ person crew with the dogs, intricate locations, etc., you might want to give yourself a few months for due diligence on behalf the large production. This will give you time to scout locations, meet with your team and develop and adjust your creative accordingly.
Conversely, if you having a friendly shoot at the beach, you can probably get away with a little less time from conception to production — but a little structure never hurt anybody! The scope of the project will depend on how many decisions (and how much money) need to be managed throughout, so make sure you set yourself up for success by allowing yourself time to coordinate these items.
3. Create a Shot List
Most people never consider making an actual shot list when approaching a production. If you are looking at anything longer than three shots, I highly suggest you organize your shot in sequence. For one, it forces you to think about your story or piece in images, thus usually creating stronger narratives and visuals to support your already great idea. After all, a video is just a series of moving pictures right?
More importantly, the shot list will ensure every member of your team will be on the same page when it comes to logistics. This is an invaluable document for your shoot day. We’ve provided a shot list template that we use for all our larger scale productions.
The shot list should tell you the following: shot type, lens type, what the talent is doing, what the camera is doing, what the lighting is doing, what props you need and where your team is at.
4. Make a Gear Checklist
Boom boom, we got some structure in the room! But seriously, productions have a way of piling up items very, very quickly. You have camera department, art department, wardrobe, grip and lighting, and of course the miscellaneous cables and accessories that come with all of these departments. Save yourself the headache of managing all of these items in your head and use this checklist as a guide to keep your game tip top magoo.
5. Have Fun!
This is the absolute most important tip of them all. Even if you follow all of these steps to ensure a smooth production day, there are some things you just can’t control (like weather, for example). Like anything in life, you can’t be 100% prepared for everything that will come. The purpose of this article is to get you as close as possible, so that you can enjoy the day with a clear head knowing you did everything in your power to make it great.
When team morale is low, a 10-15 hour production day can feel like a lifetime. No matter what, make sure you keep a positive attitude so everyone can catch that wave and ride the momentum to the finish line. Smiles are straight up contagious and the whole reason we chose this world was to have fun creating things we love.
Want to learn more about why adding video to your marketing strategy is important? Read more here.