Marketing: How to Shoot Your Own Video

By Alexander Hiam

High quality videos and ads can be a big part of your marketing campaign. Here are some things to watch out for when you are filming your videos yourself.

Poor video quality due to lack of light. Inferior sound quality. Shaky camerawork. These are just some of the common problems plaguing amateur video. Avoid these pitfalls and create good-quality video (even if you’re using a camera that costs just a few hundred dollars) by doing the following:

  • Clean up the background. Most amateur efforts to shoot video podcasts or ads are plagued by stuff that shows up in the background. Eliminate trash cans, competitors’ signs, and anything else that’s unsightly.

  • Use a dedicated microphone close to anyone who’s speaking. Don’t use the video camera’s built-in microphone. You need to be much closer to pick up good-quality sound than you do to take a good still or video picture.

  • Set the camera on a solid surface. Ideally, this means a heavy, nonwiggly tripod. If you don’t own one, use a heavy table instead.

  • Do multiple takes. Capture enough footage so you can edit out the bad and use the best.

If you’re making a simple, low-cost or free video podcast, you may be tempted to simply sit down in front of your computer’s built-in camera and start recording. However, the rules of good video production still apply. Check the lighting! Make sure you look good! After all, you’re representing your brand.

Don’t shoot faces from a low angle. Many video podcasts show way too much chin, distorting the speaker’s face oddly. The camera should be at or slightly below your eye level if you don’t want to look like an alien.