If your organization is hiring a video production company, you should be aware of the various steps in the video creation process. It will ensure you get what you want. In general, you should work towards a “no surprises” approach.
Step One: Concept Development
Even before you contract a video producer, you should think about the following :
- Who is your target audience?
- What is your fundamental message?
- Where will it be shown, for example, in a forum, a sales meeting or on YouTube?
- How long is the video?
- Is it live-action or animation or a combination?
- What is your preferred filming style?
- What is your budget?
The video producer will ask you these questions. Therefore, define your needs early for your video production.
At the end of your first meeting, you should feel the producers understand your needs and they have offered you – based on their experience – alternatives that achieve the same objectives.
Within a day or two, you should expect a concept brief that clearly states what they intend to produce, how it fits into your needs and a broad brush work plan. The standard you should expect is a document that a contract can be based on.
Step Two: Pre-Production
This is a critical stage in the video production process. Once given a green-light to move forward, the video producers will develop an overall plan and provide important documents to guide the production. It will include a:
- script and
- story board.
With these documents, you should be able judge the video’s content and its look and feel.
From here, a production schedule is developed which is a detailed work plan that includes schedules, shot lists and locations.
If there is talent or actors, they will be auditioned. You should insist on a sign-off on the talent.
Other pre-production work includes:
- securing the camera and equipment
- revising scripts
- creating lists of preferred shots, and
- Anything else that will help the production run smoothly.
Step Three: Video Production
All the planning is put into place.
If it is live-action, the producers will have the crew shoot what is needed that is defined in pre-production. If it`s animation, the core material is produced.
Step Four: Post Production
Once all the raw material has been generated, it’s time to:
- Edit the footage
- Add music
- Add audio effects and
- Voice overs.
The video producer should offer you a rough cut version of the video that looks pretty close to what you expect. But it may not have finished onscreen graphics and the narration may be a ‘scratch track.’ This is a narration that provides guidance for the editor but is not the final version.
Depending on your contract with the video producers, you may have two or three versions produced with changes at every review. But there should be “no surprises,” and the versions are there to fine tune your video, not to start all over again.
The producers will fine tune the edit, once the final rough cut has been accepted. It will also include adding approved music, recording the narration, adding final graphics, correcting the color and sweetening the sound.
The videos will then be rendered out to the final agreed formats.