As the new year brings in resolutions and new strategic plans, it’s important to have the skills and know-how to actually implement your ideas. Video has proven to be a great social media tool, but you can’t make a successful video without knowing a few things about how to make a good one.
If you’re collecting vision and audio for your video rather than using stock footage, make sure the quality is high enough; no one wants to watch (or share) blurry footage. Smartphone video is good enough for social media, so you don’t need professional gear. But smartphones don’t stop user error; your footage still needs to be well composed, well-lit and in focus. If you use stock footage, make sure it fits your video’s aspect ratio and that the footage is all of the same quality. You should also make sure the stock footage doesn’t create a jarring effect when you switch between sources.
Stills versus Moving Images
Still image videos with overlayed text can be a great way to grab your audience’s attention and get information across. Face-to-camera videos can feel more personal, especially for big announcements or promos. A still image video about your latest blog post might work more effectively than simple lines of text and a link that can get lost on your readers’ feeds. Quotes and graphics are a great way to highlight information and make your video stand out.
Fit & Suitability
There’s no point posting your landscape video to Instagram and having half your content cut off. Social media platforms often use portrait for mobile and landscape for desktop, so make sure to check that your video will fit and look its best on the platform.
It’s also important to think about which platform best fits your video. Our series on how to use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn has tips for what content works best on each.
Readability is important not only to make sure your video looks good, but also to make it accessible. Using art theories like leadings lines and the rule of thirds can help draw your audience’s attention where you want it most. Voiceovers and captions are a great way to ensure your content is accessible to as many people as possible.
Text needs to be readable over the background images. You can ensure text is readable by using a semi-translucent lower third bar as a background to captions. Audio description or narration also needs to be clear and easy to understand.
Viewers have to be able to see and correctly interpret your content. The main subject of the video needs to be on the screen, with background images not distracting from your message. There is a range of editing programs both paid and free for everyone from beginners looking for simple editing tools to seasoned professionals. Editing doesn’t need to be fancy; clean simple cuts that don’t distract are always better than something flashy and potentially confusing. An easy way to make edits feel seamless is to time them to the beat of some background music. Once you’ve nailed the basics of your software, many editing tips and tricks are just a YouTube tutorial away.
Check out our blog on video platforms for more on editing software and online video creation programs, and for Facebook and Instagram video tips.