8 Tips on Editing and Filming

With video becoming a staple in marketing, many people are turning to video to better enhance their business. Whether you are a marketer, a solopreneur, or have a team with a real passion for video, it’s good to have a drive to make videos.

But as you get more involved in making videos, the more you’ll realize there are barriers. Sure anyone can make videos, but not everyone can make videos that pop out and grab attention.

Over the past decade, the price of getting decent video gear has dropped. It’s the right time to get into video and to leverage this technology. Here are some tips to use to make your videos more impactful.

Have a Plan & a Script

While improvisation is good, not everyone can put together great video content from the top of their head. People need scripts and some kind of plan. These are the basis of great filming and editing.

Remember the more time you spend in planning the less likely you’ll feel like something is missing. But also keep in mind that it doesn’t need to be extensive. Your plan and script can be bullet points of things you want to discuss.

Ensure the interview subjects are prepped

When you’re doing interviews it pays to ensure that the other person is ready. Set some clear expectations for what you want. This helps in minimizing mistakes.

In the end, much like recording solo, you want to know in general what the finished product should look like.

As a side note with interviews, never send the interviewee several pages of a script. They’re not an actor and likely won’t memorize it. Instead send them the questions that you’ll be asking them for the interview.

Always use the Rule of Thirds

The “Rule of Thirds” is a film and photography term. It suggests that when filming or taking a shot, your main subject should be positioned at two of the four points.

How you get to that is by allowing the camera or phone to display a 3×3 grid. Every camera in the world has this feature.

But why does ensuring someone stand at two of those four points matter? When someone or something you want people to notice is in that position, people will instinctively look at it. There is a sort of pull that our eyes will naturally gravitate towards.

On top of that, people spend more time at those particular points than any other point.

Avoid ‘Spotlighting’ & check acoustics

Unless you are in a Broadway musical, avoid placing bright pools of light on your subject. Instead look to other lighting techniques that better suit what you’re looking for.

In general, if you’ve got lighting, don’t point it directly at the subject. Make sure what you are recording is lit evenly. Consider a reflector or a diffuser if you need to.

Also in terms of the location, make a point of checking the acoustics. Presentation is key, but so is your audio. If you sound like you’re talking in a cave, that’s going to create complications.

Sure you can fix a lot of audio issues in editing, but you can mitigate them through materials, or a change in scenery if possible.

Cut ‘on the action’

When you get to editing, always be cutting on the action. What I mean by this is when you need to cut, make sure the next shot is during an action that the subject or person is doing.

For example, if someone is to open a door and start walking through it, cut the shot at the moment the person is turning the door handle.

When you cut away before and after the action, it may come off as jarring and distracting to people. When you are cutting on the action, you’re creating a smoother transition that feel natural.

Sort out Flow before Timing

Once you have all the clips that you want into your editor, you’ll then put everything together to make a proper video. But before you get to editing everything precisely, make sure that everything is in the proper place.

Depending on the style of video you’re going for, you might not have to worry about this as much. However if you’re making more professional videos this might be important.

The lesson here is to ensure everything flows together smoothly first before you start trimming everything.

Keep Effects and Transitions to a Minimum

There are a lot of cool effects and transitions out there but there comes a point where those become obnoxious. The more attention you draw to transitions and editing, the more amateurish your production will appear.

If you’re using transitions, stick with simple fades or cross-fades. Either way you want to use transitions sparingly and keep it the same transition every time.

Be careful with Music

No doubt music is great, but not every video needs background music. If you are going for music, there are two things to do:

  • First, do your homework. Some music has licensing requirements. Some might not fit the tone you’re going for too.
  • Second, listen to the music with your audio too. Make sure that the music isn’t overbearing but also fitting for your video too.

Filming takes Time

The editing and filming process takes time but they play crucial roles in everything. Getting into filming is great. But actually filming and editing are a delicate practice that shouldn’t be rushed. Take your time and keep these tips in mind and you’ll produce better videos to share to your audience.