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Old January 11th, 2012, 09:19 AM   #1
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Promotional Videos- How to keep it interesting

I recently completed a promotional video and I am "o.k" with the final results. Unlike most projects, I did not have complete control over this video as the marketing team had to get everything included that they wanted into the video. If it was up to me the video would only be half as long.

90% of the clips were shot by me with an ax-a1 and a crappy tripod. I also went into capturing the clips not knowing what they would be used for since this was not my main priority for being at the show (NFMT).

Video I made
NFMT 2012 - National Facilities Management & Technology Expo - Baltimore - YouTube

Previous years video (NOT made by me)
NFMT 2011 is coming - YouTube

I feel like I improved over the past years video, but I want to get better.

Now that I know more of what I am going for, I hope to get some much better footage when I attend the show this year. Again I will be limited to an XH-A1 and a tripod for most shots. Any recommendations on what & how to film to make it more professional?

Thanks,

-Paul
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Old January 12th, 2012, 07:11 AM   #2
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Re: Promotional Videos- How to keep it interesting

You said it all in your first paragraph! It's almost impossible to make a promotional video too short. You did a good job in the video with the kind of footage you had to shoot, and the constraints imposed upon you. Your instincts are good, and so are your skills.

As for dealing with the marketing team, maybe you could convince them to let you make two versions, a short 30 second to one minute to post. Then a longer version they can send to prospects who request more information.

I feel your pain, it's happened to me too.

By the way, my main camera is an XH-A1 and I love it. I love it even more since I got a better tripod a couple of years ago. It's a workhorse. I often use the wide angle adapter as well. The camera doesn't limit me all that much. What limits me is me!
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Old January 15th, 2012, 10:08 PM   #3
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Re: Promotional Videos- How to keep it interesting

You could try to 'convince' the marketing folk by conducting a survey to discover the shortcomings. When it's public, they can't hide.

You can also research the net to find papers on attention span and present it to them. You just need to find a way to speak their language.
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Old January 17th, 2012, 02:40 PM   #4
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Re: Promotional Videos- How to keep it interesting

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Originally Posted by Roger Van Duyn View Post
You said it all in your first paragraph! It's almost impossible to make a promotional video too short. You did a good job in the video with the kind of footage you had to shoot, and the constraints imposed upon you. Your instincts are good, and so are your skills.
Thanks Roger!

And thank you both for the advice.
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Old January 30th, 2012, 10:12 AM   #5
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Re: Promotional Videos- How to keep it interesting

looks to me like a good tripod is your biggest limiting factor right now. it'll make a huge step up to have those shots on sticks rather than hand-held or a crappy, jittery tripod (but I feel your pain, until I get my refund check in i'm stuck with the same kind of tripod)
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Old March 4th, 2012, 03:41 PM   #6
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Re: Promotional Videos- How to keep it interesting

Definitely an improvement over previous year. As for recommendations, I would obtain the outline first before shooting, so you'll know what to focus on while getting shots. There are references to many different topics and types of vendors, seminars, etc... Instead of so many similar people shots you could cut to the actual thing being referenced. "HVAC, Lighting, ADA, Flooring, etc..." show footage of those types of booths when referenced by the narrator. Show the booth and it's contents vs people staring at nothing specific, or use those to cut to the booth, i.e. people staring then cut to the booth's contents.

"It's a dynamic, interactive educational and networking experience that delivers revolutionary ideas and career-boosting inspiration. You'll rethink your approach to facilities management, connect with like-minded allies, hear from industry visionaries, and discover new tools to make your job more satisfying and productive than ever before."

That would be my inspiration to get specific shots for the video. The people shots I was referring to was basically B-Roll footage used a little to frequently. Use it sparingly, unless your goal was to make it feel so busy. A little less of that footage can still get that message or feeling across.

Just thoughts or ideas for the next time :)
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Old March 13th, 2012, 12:42 PM   #7
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Re: Promotional Videos- How to keep it interesting

John says some good advice there.

I agree, good improvement over last year and yes the video would be much better if it was shorter. For Expos and events I dont thing any more than 1 minute is needed in most cases. Every bit of info about the event doesnt need to be in the video, after all the website is there for extra detail, promotional videos purpose is to get someone interested in something.

A better tripod would help a lot with your shots. Certainly top of your list of things to buy. I think a bit of colour correction, just boosting colour, exposure, contrast etc would also help the overall look of the video. I know that it can be hard with HDV footage to do that but some tweaks would help.
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Old May 29th, 2012, 02:01 PM   #8
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Re: Promotional Videos- How to keep it interesting

Took over control this year :)

Thanks for the insight everyone!

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Old May 29th, 2012, 07:46 PM   #9
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Re: Promotional Videos- How to keep it interesting

Looked great.
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Old May 31st, 2012, 01:18 AM   #10
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Re: Promotional Videos- How to keep it interesting

I think that they should be very happy with this. One thought that could be relevent though: to me, this focuses on the new attendee. Was that your audience? If you have ever been to one of these, you know what to expect. And this doesn't really tell the repeat attendee why this year is any different. Was there anything really special happening this year? Last year, you had the electrcial section which was new. Additionally, you might have some kind of a testimonial, sort of as you did last year at the end. I always like finding someone who really loves the show and says so. Briefly. Since you don't have narration, maybe a quote?

One other thought: Was this also intended to get people to exhibet? Could be a bit of an addition to lengthen it that would include why exhibetors should show up. Any stats on success rates or new business generated?

Good things about it: It's short, to the point, and if you haven't been to it, you likely would feel it's a professionally run show. I'm a bit of two minds about not having some narration. The first year's narration was ok, second years was better but a bit long.

But it is good. Moves fast, gets the point across. Tells the story quickly.
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Old May 31st, 2012, 08:51 AM   #11
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Re: Promotional Videos- How to keep it interesting

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Brice View Post
Looked great.
Thanks Mike.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Al Bergstein View Post
I think that they should be very happy with this. One thought that could be relevent though: to me, this focuses on the new attendee. Was that your audience? If you have ever been to one of these, you know what to expect. And this doesn't really tell the repeat attendee why this year is any different. Was there anything really special happening this year? Last year, you had the electrcial section which was new. Additionally, you might have some kind of a testimonial, sort of as you did last year at the end. I always like finding someone who really loves the show and says so. Briefly. Since you don't have narration, maybe a quote?

One other thought: Was this also intended to get people to exhibet? Could be a bit of an addition to lengthen it that would include why exhibetors should show up. Any stats on success rates or new business generated?

Good things about it: It's short, to the point, and if you haven't been to it, you likely would feel it's a professionally run show. I'm a bit of two minds about not having some narration. The first year's narration was ok, second years was better but a bit long.

But it is good. Moves fast, gets the point across. Tells the story quickly.
Al, yes this video is aimed more towards attracting new attendees. Also, not a lot has changed from 2012 to 2013. But i agree with your point of the narrative being helpful. I was just talking with marketing and stating that both style videos can be useful.

I did make a separate video geared more towards getting exhibitors to sign up, but I did not think of quoting a success story. maybe next year. :)
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Old June 17th, 2012, 04:28 PM   #12
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Re: Promotional Videos- How to keep it interesting

Looks great! Everyone had great ideas so the only tip I would throw in is to do a bit of grading on the shots at the end of the editing process. Even upping hte contrast a little bit would make the video look better/more intense, which would go ebtter with the look you seemed to be trying to achieve.
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Old September 5th, 2012, 05:27 PM   #13
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Re: Promotional Videos- How to keep it interesting

I thought the video was really good (very watchable and without any interest in the event) and liked it especially because there was no narration / voice-over. It got you engaged more for me because no-one was doing the work for you. The inter-titles were just enough.

The music works well but I did wonder if some sounds of the expo/conference could somehow be integrated (human and machine / exhibit) - to add atmosphere and interest - you are quite creative with the visual editing, less so with the sound.
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Old September 6th, 2012, 05:13 PM   #14
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Re: Promotional Videos- How to keep it interesting

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ammar Ijaz View Post
Looks great! Everyone had great ideas so the only tip I would throw in is to do a bit of grading on the shots at the end of the editing process. Even upping hte contrast a little bit would make the video look better/more intense, which would go ebtter with the look you seemed to be trying to achieve.
I concur. I like it a lot, was just a little too flat for my taste.
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