6 Steps for Video Success, Part 3: Production to Publication

Drawing an animation for a videoIn our previous blog post Six Steps for Video Success, Part 2: The Right Foundation, we looked at how to complete your script and storyboard, and then continued into the first stage of collecting the raw materials from which you will build your live action or animated video. In this post, we are going to continue through our 6-step process and develop your first video rough-cut or animatic, complete the production process, and look at options for publishing your video.

Step 4: Rough-cut or animatic

Once you have shot your live action video, or built your animated models and backgrounds, you are ready to create a rough-cut or animatic.

Rough cut:The raw, unedited, or marginally edited film that you have selected from all of your takes, which contains the main story line.

The goal with the rough cut is to ensure that the entire story was captured on tape and that the impression of the video is going to give you the results you are looking for. This is like looking at a guy in a tuxedo and tennis shoes. You can see where it is heading, but it isn’t there yet!

Animatic: The main storyline shown in simplified animation. This may be a slide show of still images with some animated parts, animated imagery, or animated backgrounds with still foregrounds.

The main goal of the animatic is to ensure that the timing of the video works with the voiceover and soundtrack. This is your chance to ensure that the story is being told in a way that will achieve your intended results. With animation, this is the perfect time to make edits to content or order, or add a scene to ensure your end result is successful. Making extensive changes past this point becomes increasingly difficult.

It is now time to record your final voiceover, finalize your soundtrack, and set the branding on the opening and ending cards — the starting and closing frames of your video. These frames are typically used to provide a video title, a company logo, legal copyrights and a call-to-action.

Step 5: Production

This may be the most time-intensive step in your process, but here is your next opportunity to make or break your video. You have used the rough-cut and animatic phase to work out all the kinks in subject matter and timing.  You are now ready to really dig in and finish your video.

From here on, you will be engrossed in the minutia —

  • Is the lighting too dark?  To light?
  • Is the animation too fast?
  • Will this rhythm fit the soundtrack I’m adding? Will I need to edit it as well?
  • Are the layers working correctly?
  • Are all of my speakers introduced?
  • Is my on-screen text consistent?
  • Can you read all of the text on screen?
  • Have I allowed enough room for closed captioning?
  • Are all the colors consistent?
  • Is there a glare on that speaker’s forehead?
  • Can I cut to the next scene before my speaker’s smile turns to a smirk?

The list of questions you will ask yourself during this process is nearly endless. As you work through the video production process and progress towards your ultimate goal you will see your video come together.

Remember to steadily evaluate your video with each newly completed scene. Ensure that you are continually following your storyboard, and do not change direction mid-project.

Step 6: Publication

This is the home stretch for your video creation process. You’ve completed the video and shown it to a few friends and peers. Are they excited about it, or are they telling you how it should have been done? Let’s hope they want to post it on their own blogs, and show it to their friends and family. If so, you have done your job right and have created a video worth sharing.

There are lots of ways to publish a video on the Internet so that you can start building a following. The most common, and probably most important, is YouTube, as it has the largest member base, but here are some good publishers to look at for different purposes on the Web:

  • YouTube
    A free subscription for posting or watching video, with a player that easily embeds on most blogs and web sites. With some work, this can be tied into monetization systems, so you can make money off of your videos.
  • Vimeo
    A variety of subscription levels and an active support community make this a great host for your videos. It has a built-in monetization system that will help you be ready to capitalize on your videos from the first day you load them.
  • BrightCove
    Primarily for business-class accounts, this system is very customizable and easy to use, but may not be right for someone just getting started with video.
  • Ooyala
    The variety of price points that Ooyala has are focused around enterprise customers that need an always-on solution to serve terabytes of video content to their users every day.
  • Kaltura
    This open source, online video platform, and has solutions that support SMBs or mega-corporations. You can choose what level of service you need.

No matter which solution you choose as your online video platform (OVP) you will need to ensure that your videos are accessible to the masses, play well on your web site on all types of devices, and can be found in popular search engines.  All of these tools will help you with that, assuming your video encourages people to watch.

We hope this series was helpful as you created your first video – or it gave you a new perspective if you are an experienced video producer. If you would like to talk to us about your script-writing needs, you can contact us here.

>> Read Part 2 of the Six Steps for Video Success series

>> Read Part 1 of the Six Steps for Video Success series