Looking for video success? Video is a fresh and exciting direction for bloggers, and the Dash Kitten Crew have some great tips to get you working movie magic!
You can make good video, using anything from your mobile cellphone to a fancy video camera. The rage for video is hitting social media in a big way and, with a bit of preparation, you can walk the video walk with total confidence.
There is no steep learning curve – just common sense preparation and a dash of planning. So, don’t be intimidated by the high production values of professional outfits – your aim is quality video values for you and your audience. Let’s get started!
The Crew’s Top Tips for Video Success
Know your camera
How long it takes to turn on and start working? How much light do you need? Can you use it? Read the manual!
Know how to edit your video.
Polish comes with editing. No, it’s not hard. Learn to trim video footage and, if you need one, add a simple soundtrack. For music, we recommend Incompetech for a wide variety of styles, royalty free under a Creative Commons licence.
Know what kind of video you are shooting
Is it a homestyle vignette, a cat’s adventures, a puppy falling over its paws, a product review, or a sophisticated travelogue?
Make it a quickie!
Check out our sample movie. Harvey’s simple video was shot and uploaded complete with music in 10 minutes it’s not perfect, but it captured a precious moment. Live video this isn’t but it is close enough. The upside is that your control of the end result reflects better on you, or your brand. Harvey didn’t go viral, but this video gained him a lot of friends after his ear surgery.
Plan ahead for impact
For your brand or blog, you may review a product. Where to start? Here’s an example – a pet garment review. Think of one of those gorgeous cat couture creations, or a practical pups’ winter garment. Take a couple of long shots, garment in motion, several close-ups of details, and finish with a full length shot. Done in 5 minutes, trim (edit) using an app like Vee, and upload to social media. Immediate, fun and exciting for your followers and friends.
Can we hear you?
Whether you use the camera’s audio, or a special microphone make sure the sound is clear.
Even professional GoPro users know there is only so much exciting ‘wobble’ a viewer will tolerate before clicking elsewhere.
Cheat like a pro for video success!
If you have access to iMovie you can use their ‘trailer’ format to create a dynamic instant mini movie. (If you are a Windows user, we would welcome your beginner recommendations.) The “Arthur’s Movie” video below was shot on an iPhone 4S then loaded into iMovie and edited using an iMac. iMovie is also available in cut down format for iPhones.
I used the iMovie ‘trailer’ feature because this gave professional polish. The pre-set trailers come ready to use, you just drag and drop video and images into the structured format. They are set up complete with music, royalty free thanks to Apple. Arthur is FIV+ and was looking for a home; I was aiming for a positive vibe and the trailer worked a treat – see what you think.
Oh and Arthur? He found his forever home with a family who adore him!
Self Presentation Video Tips
Don’t just sit there, no matter how important or exciting your message is! You can record a voiceover and present your message, keeping viewer’s interest by cutting between you and the cats, a city view, your product or other interesting visuals…………
- Sit in good light – or lighten your footage when you edit.
- Video success means being prepared, so have a mini script or list of ideas
- Keep your background, and clothing neutral unless you have a specific idea or brand you are promoting.
- Tell your ‘story’. Have a beginning, a middle, an end, including your Call to Action, if you have one.
- Have fun, be relaxed and remember – be yourself, your blog, your brand.
- Don’t UM, AH or ER – EVERRRRRRRR. It makes the brightest most intelligent person sound awful!
Exceptions – OK we have one of those too!
Talking to the camera is boring for the viewer, unless you really have a strong, structured and specific concept. This lady is seller for a company called Scentsy. She generates excitement with product ‘unboxings’ similar to the pet blog posts for cat and dog gift boxes. Note the neutral background, the clear light and although it’s not a perfect studio setup – she nails her message perfectly.
Tech Editor at DashKitten.com