Tips for creating video content at home

You can create great video content!

Joe lays out some practical tips on how to make great video content at home. Given the current situation where many of us find ourselves at home, we still need to connect with our customers.

You can do it with what you have in your own home – no special gadgets required.

#1: Visual

Smartphone, laptop, or camera

You have a lot of options without having to purchase an expensive camera. The video above was shot with an smartphone because they generally have nice cameras. You can also try a laptop with a built-in or plug-in camera. Most of us don’t have access to $3,000 cameras – so we use what we have around us.

Find a quiet (relatively quiet) place

Pick a quiet place in your home that is both quiet in volume and doesn’t have too many distracting things behind you. You want people to be able to focus on you and not distracted by your messy bed, unkept library of books, or cool board games – if at all possible. So consider your background as well as noise level when you’re setting up.

Consider lighting

A huge part of where you’re setting up is definitely lighting.

You want to make sure your video is well lit. I would recommend setting up close to a window. You don’t want to sit right in front of a window because then the lights just flat on your face.

If you can set up so the windows coming to a side so it’s filling in the light on part of your face that’s really good.

If you can actually have another light like a lamp or something in the background so that the wall isn’t just dark and it’s just your face lit up, you want to have a light behind you also as well.

You also don’t want to have direct sunlight where you’re squinting and that’ll create really harsh shadows. Cloudy days are the best for shooting video because then the sun isn’t so severe. And then you can have some really nice soft light that just illuminates your face.

If you’re showing off a product or something you want to make sure that you have good light so that people are able to see that.

Eye-Level Camera

Another tip is to keep your camera height at eye level. You don’t want to have it too low cause then the people who are watching it, it looks like you’re looking down on them and it just looks weird if you’re looking up towards the camera.

Keep the camera at eye height so then it looks like having a conversation with someone.

Horizontal not vertical

When people shoot in portrait mode – it makes it difficult for a lot of things: YouTube, news outlets, and phones and computers are all set to have the landscape mode. A little part of the creative videographer dies when people shoot in portrait 🙂

Spacing off of the wall.

So make sure you have good light and make sure you have a place that is not super noisy. You also don’t want to be right up against the wall so that there’s some depth.

Not everyone’s going to have a perfect space.

(I actually spent quite a bit of time setting up at different spots within my house trying to find a place that would work, that the light wasn’t too harsh, that there was enough light that the background wasn’t a wreck.) So, it could take time to find a good spot but it’s definitely worth the time to find the right spot so that you can make great content.

#2. Audio

It’s a lot easier to watch a video with good audio than one without.

For this video (above) we used an external mic to capture my voice. Here are some links to some really inexpensive options for you to have an external mic that you can just plug into your phone so that you can have better audio quality for your videos.

You can also use headphones. A lot of headphones nowadays have the little microphone on it so that you can capture the audio better. I haven’t seen people use AirPods for videos so I don’t know how those work but you can definitely try them.

Make sure when you record your video you listen to it before you just upload it and send it. You want to make sure that you have good audio quality that people will be able to hear what you’re saying and will enjoy listening to it.

#3: Content Outline

The third piece is you want to know before you sit down in front of the camera what you want to talk about. If you’re showing off a product you probably want to have the product ready and know more about it. That’ll make your shooting experience a lot easier for you so that you’re not just fumbling around and not exactly sure what you want to do.

You can have everything set up and then you sit down and you’re like, “I have no idea what I’m planning on shooting.”

I would recommend definitely creating an outline.

Review and feedback

I recommended getting someone to watch the video before you upload it so they can give you your critiques and don’t be too sensitive about it.

(I know I personally can be very sensitive about my videos so when I show them to people and they’re like, “You should change this.” but I am getting better – lol.)

#4: Post Production

Don’t have post-production abilities or knowledge – you can try to get your video in just one straight shot without any need for edits which is generally pretty difficult.

Or you could plan on taking your video and putting it into a video editor and cutting out sections and putting it together in a more professional manner. If you want to go that route I actually have to recommendations of some free software that is pretty basic but it will work for most people. If you’re on a Mac or an Apple computer then you can use iMovie. And if you’re on a PC you can use Windows Movie Maker 10. So obviously those aren’t going to be the most elaborate programs but they will work. You can be able to put the video in there, put titles on it, cut out sections, put different sections together, add music and export it.

#5: Post and Share

You want to be taking your video content and you want to be posting it on Facebook, YouTube, sending in email campaigns, and sharing it with your target audience.

BONUS TIP: Transcribe your video

If you take your video you can actually send it to a transcription service and they will type out all of the things that you say and that’s a really easy way to create blog content.

We use a website called rev.com and you just send your video to them. Within an hour or so they’ll get back to you with the transcript of the video and you can just take that and put that on your website as a blog content.

Hopefully, this is helpful. If you have any questions please feel free to reach out at Sparrow Websites.

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