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Tips For Shooting a Social Media Video (Interview, Demo or Talking Head)

 
  1. Audio: for best results, use a lavalier mic setup. For our own smartphone videos, we use the MOVO PM20-S, which accommodates 2 subjects along with a  20-foot MOVO extension cable (both available on Amazon, combined price around $53). This product is compatible with iPhone/iPad as well many higher-end Android models. See specs for compatibility with your phone, DSLR or dedicated video camera.  
 
  1. Lighting: Use ample and even lighting. Your best bets are natural light (i.e., facing a window, but not in direct sun), a  lighting kit, or a ring light.  A very brightly lit room might suffice, but be on the lookout for a yellowish cast  or unattractive shadows from overhead lights.
 
  1. Camera positioning and angle:  The camera should be positioned on a tripod at the subject's eye level or above.
 
  1. Placement of subjects: if more than one person appears in the shot, place them close together-- closer than they will feel is natural--- and not on the outer margins of the shot. Likewise, product looks best on camera when displayed tightly towards the center of the table rather than spread out. This also allows the flexibility to zoom in and crop in post-production.
 
  1. Frame size:  We typically shoot a standard 16:9 frame size (perfect for YouTube). For Facebook, we will take that same video and place it within a square outer frame with a branded header at the top and  subtitles at the bottom. If you will be editing the video in house, here are a few options:
    1. Provide WCEI with a 16:9 final cut for us to upload to Facebook as is, even though it doesn’t maximize the vertical real estate in the newsfeed.
    2. Provide a 16:9 video that we can place within a square frame for Facebook
    3. Provide two final, finished cuts: a 16:9 version and a version that has been cropped to 1:1 (square).
 
  1. Captions/Subtitles:  80% of social media users view video without sound. Therefore, subtitles are essential. Please include these on your final cut(s) OR provide us with a transcript so that we can add them.
 
  1. Duration:  If possible, keep the video to under 2 minutes. We highly recommend leading off immediately with dialog that introduces the topic, not a graphic. In a social newsfeed, you have only a few seconds to capture the viewers’ interest before they scroll to the next item in the feed. If you begin with a product shot or logo, many readers will move on before the interview starts. In addition, if your first frame includes too much text (more than 20% of the total area), Facebook's ad platform will reject it or severely limit the post's reach.
 
  1. Call to action:  Ensure that the video CTA, whether spoken or on a slide, matches the desired CTA that we’ll use in the social post
 
  1. Thumbnail photo:  Both the YouTube and Facebook platforms allow a custom thumbnail image. For this purpose, shoot a posed still photo of the set. Otherwise, it’s necessary to search frame by frame for a suitably poised image. This image is also subject to Facebook's policy on text within images.
Example 1: Square Facebook thumbnail photo. In this case, the original 16:9 shot is zoomed in and cropped.
 

 
 
Example 2 : A moment from a square video with subtitles. The original 16:9 frame is slightly zoomed in and cropped. The video's title is placed in the upper part of the frame and the subtitles in the lower part.

In this example, the frame is white, but the color of the frame may vary depending on your logo and other elements of the set.

 
Business System Development, Web Design, and Web Development by SilverTech, Inc.
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