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How can you plan your filming session so that you create a great video from the moment you hit record?

“We can just figure that all out after filming right?”

Ah the editor’s most feared solution, fix it in post. While editing can solve a lot of problems that arise during filming, it isn’t going to be a magic solution.

So how can you plan your filming session so that you can plan a great video from the moment you hit record, and fly through the editing room?

Well, it generally goes along the same lines as planning a lot of other communications work, and that is by starting with the overall strategy you have for communications content.

Based on your strategy, you’ll have an audience, a set of messages to convey that are concise, and a call to action for all of them. From there, you should start asking questions about the “feeling” of the video. Should it be playful or serious? Like a documentary interview or a keynote address? Will you cover it with example footage (b-roll) or just have someone speaking? Where are you going to post it?

As you answer these questions, you’ll inform how the filming process should go. It will give you an idea of the physical space you want to film in, whether the talent is looking at the camera or off to the side, and even inform the length of the video.

The key with all of these questions is to answer them as specifically as possible, down to a granularity level of “I want Y person to see this video on LinkedIn while taking a break from work, and I want them to think they’d be happy to have a coffee with me, talking about this same subject.”

When you have such a specific goal in mind, you can form a full concept of the video before even hitting record, so that every decision you make as you move forward, from scripting to location to eye-line of talent to music and so on is already clear, and all you need to do in editing is assemble the pieces.

– Mike Ball, Video Lead

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