The stakes are high because the video will be shown at a trade show, a company event or during a video campaign. If the project doesn’t make it to the clients, the money will go down the drain and the person responsible for the production may end up without a job!
We’ve put together five tips to help you produce promotional videos to avoid such situations. They are based on our experience with over 350 projects of this type.
1) Set a clear goal for your promotional video
Promotional is a very broad term. That’s why it’s a good idea to clarify what you’re really about. This will make it easier to produce the film, and to also assess whether the goal has been achieved.
Is it about image building? Then, for example, the goal could be “I want our clients, after watching the film, to say ‘Wow, I didn’t know your company had such a great story”.
Sales? Then, for example, the goal could be “I want to generate an additional 400 thousand PLN in revenue”.
How about subtle education about our solution and dispelling harmful myths? Then, for example, the goal could be “I want customers who call the company to have prior knowledge about our products”.
Each different goal requires a different approach. Therefore, when producing promotional videos, it is worth having one specific goal. Not two. Not three. Just one.
2) Choose a promotional video production method
You can pursue:
1.A.) Videos shot with smartphones
Many YouTube videos are shot this way. Take your iPhone in hand, look for good light or illuminate the set yourself.
Of course, it’s hard to make a Hollywood-level promotional video this way.
If you’re a company that sells premium real estate, it may not be a good idea to shoot your campaign this way (although Bentley shot one of its commercials using an iPhone). On the other hand, in the case of a startup, such naturalness (and low costs) may be a great idea.
Made in Paris filmed by iPhone X
1.B.) Films shot by a film crew
When we think of producing promotional films, what usually comes to mind is a studio, big, heavy cameras, professional lighting and a trailer for the main actor with a star on the door.
All this can be guaranteed to you by a film crew. The costs are considerable though, but with the right work with light, professional actors and top-notch equipment, you can achieve virtually any effect.
Film firmy Samsung
2) Promotional animations
2.A.) Whiteboard animations
These are the animations with a drawing hand.
The drawing form shortens the distance, engages the viewer and allows for considerable freedom of creativity.
Whiteboard animation for TechnoNICOL
2B) Vector animations
These are called computer animations.
Everything moves by itself and graphic designers together with animators can create almost any solution.
Vector animation for the European Rover Challenge
2C) 3D animation
This is the most complex type of animation. If you go into complex 3D animation, the budget and capabilities can be similar to working with a top film crew.
The effects can also be amazing. Such films as Shrek and Where is Nemo were created using this method.
Corporate 3D animation for mining industry
Once you know what method you want to use, it’s time to contact the agency.
3) Fill out the Brief carefully – in writing or by phone
Each studio collects information about the project from the client. Sometimes it is done using a form, sometimes by phone or face to face meeting.
During such a conversation, the studio gets to know the broader context of the project – whether the promotional film will be a part of a larger campaign, what style should be used, etc.
It is important to fill in the Brief carefully, so the agency can present proposals that hit the mark.
4) Choose the right style
Dark, colorful, formal, playful. A good studio can create virtually any style.
Most often, it is chosen based on the target group, product, and client’s goals. A promotional film for sunglasses aimed at teenagers will look different, to a bank image film for wealthy entrepreneurs.
Based on the style, the color scheme of the promotional video is chosen and the characters or the storyline.
5) Keep good communication with the studio during the project
During the promotional video production, you need to give the studio the right content materials. Think through and accept the work schedule. Keep an eye on deadlines for turnarounds and involve decision-makers.
6) Take care of distribution
Don’t forget about the last point as without distribution, the production of promotional videos makes no sense, i.e. how will you reach your viewers.
Is the video going to be shown on TV? On YouTube? On LinkedIn? Or maybe in meetings with clients?
You need to know how you will reach your audience, or else your promotional video will be collecting dust!
The most common distribution channels are:
- Television (regional and national),
- Out of Home screens (e.g. located in shopping malls, train stations or airports),
- Internet portals
Social Media – both organic (free) and paid distribution (when you buy ads):
- LinkedIn messages,
- Emails to clients,
- Meetings with clients,
- Events such as trade shows and conferences.
Promotional video production in 6 steps
To summarize the 6 steps, proper preparation for promotional video production looks like the following:
- Set a clear goal for your video
- Choose your production method
- Fill out the Studio Brief carefully – in writing or by phone or face-to-face meeting
- Choose the right style
- Keep good communication with the studio during the project
- Take care of distribution.
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