Making a great video for your most important messages doesn't have to be hard or time-consuming. Check out these 5 tips to creating good videos.
If done well, video is a powerful method of communication that engages people far better than text-based messages alone.
But when it comes right down to it, most of us probably feel like making a good video on our own is too hard and too time consuming. Teachers, especially, have little to no extra time in their days to make room for extra stuff unless the tasks are easy and the results are rewarding.
Well, I’m happy to report that creating videos to communicate important messages is both easy and rewarding. Particularly when communicating with students’ parents, teachers may find that a video is often much more effective than a text-only email. Videos are a dynamic, personal way to supplement communication between open houses or grading periods.
Once you’ve located your webcam on your laptop/desktop or the video camera feature on your smartphone, you’re ready to start making a video!
Here are five easy tips for making good-looking videos with your webcam or iPhone:
Start with the end in mind. Before you start shooting, ask yourself what you want the audience to get out of your video. Then work backwards from there to create an effective presentation.
Be careful with framing. Use the “rule of thirds.” When framing the face, the top third is the eyes and the lower third is the mouth; use the upper one-third of your screen to frame your eyes. Avoid the “bulls-eye” shot where the nose is in the exact center of the frame and there's tons of space above the person's head.
Be careful with the lighting. You don’t need fancy studio lights, but you do want a well-lit video with no deep shadows; just a couple of well-placed lamps can give your video a more professional look.
Watch your backgrounds. For instance, make sure nothing appears as if it’s sticking out of your head, like a plant or a lamp. Such distractions will make the audience focus on the weird thing that’s happening, instead of your message.
If you don’t feel very comfortable being on camera, go back to the plan. Plan your work, and work your plan. To gain confidence in front of the camera, be well-prepared. If you wouldn’t stand in front of a group and speak without a plan, don’t stand (or sit) in front of a camera without one either. (Planning tips: write a script or rehearse what you're going to say in your mind several times before you press “record.”
Bonus tip: Don’t be afraid to shoot it over again. There’s no pressure to get everything right on the first try. Redo it until there are no errors.
Okay, I made a video. Now what do I do with it?
Sending your video is as easy as sending an attachment in an email! Check out this communication technology tool that helps you add dynamic, multimedia elements to your important messages.