Updated: Dec 13, 2021
A massive section of entrepreneurs that could be capitalizing wildly on their own in house video content are instead leaving money, connections and opportunity on the table. One of the primary reasons business owners feel such reluctance to take this on is the gear.
Well really the main reason is the time investment, but I don't have to right an article on that because the solution is fairly simple; hire someone to take it off your hands!
But another serious consideration that puts off many entrepreneurs from the idea of producing their own content to connect with their audience is the lack of professional gear. In fact this problem isn't isolated to that demographic alone. Many young, aspiring videographers believe the quality of their work is limited mostly by the gear available to them.
Here's where the need for this article arises. That's simply not the case. Today, video production gear is more accessible than ever, in fact most of us have "Oscar nominee" cameras in our pockets. Several entire feature productions have been filmed on phones, many of them very well received. You don't need a $10,000 to make great content. Don't get me wrong, it can help. Especially if you're chasing a crisp, cinematic style that would feel at home next to Nike's next Super Bowl ad.
But the fact of the matter is that not every video needs a team of pros behind it, especially vlog content. Vlog content is some of the most potent, high impact content around and it so happens that having a $10,000 actually makes it harder! Imagine trying to Vlog with a Sony fs7, this big boy of a camera.
Unless you're Arnold in his prime the chances of you walking along the beach or around a venue, holding this with one arm for any longer than a few seconds are not high.
For every job there's a tool, and if you only have access to your phone's camera there is still a great deal you can accomplish with it. In fact the new iPhone even uses AI to simulate the cinematic blurry background you see on higher end cameras called "bokeh". Then you can go ahead and edit it right on your phone using one of the myriad options for editing apps. If you have an iPad your options are even more robust as you can basically edit like you're using a laptop.
There's three fundamentals you have to focus on to get some lovely videos that allow you to connect with your audience, stay top of mind and close more deals.
look for soft lighting that will be flattering on your face. Your initial instinct may be to look for bright sources like direct sunlight but this actually casts very unflattering shadows on your face.
Soft light sources like, a shaded area, filming outside on a cloudy day or indoors in front of a window are also wonderful alternatives. Also for a modest price there are many simple lighting solutions such as the ring light pictures to the right.
All of these practices go a long way towards polishing your videos and presenting your brand in the best possible...light...sorry.
Poor sound quality will make viewers tune out before anything else does. We noticed poor sound immediately and it bothers us on a subconscious level, many young filmmakers don't even give capturing good sound the attention it requires.
How do you ensure that you do? Well the easiest option is selecting a location that has minimal ambient noise and also doesn't sound like your filming inside a shoebox. That balance is key.
Second there are many cheap microphones you can purchase specially designed for use with a smart phone that will do wonders for the sound quality. here's a favorite of ours; https://www.amazon.com/Microphone-Professional-Omnidirectional-Condenser-Conference/dp/B0817NHGYC/ref=sr_1_6?keywords=iPhone+mic&qid=1638807538&sr=8-6
Cutting the fat from the video is crucial. peoples attention spans are rarely longer than 30 seconds to a minute. This may seem short but you can communicate a lot in that time especially with some sharp editing.
Cut out unnecessary words, repeated phrases or non crucial information. Use B-roll to mask any visually egregious cuts and don't be afraid to leave not-to-jarring jump cuts if it's a vlog. It's a vlog, not a BBC documentary.
Hopefully this info goes a long way towards encouraging entrepreneurs and aspiring filmmakers alike not to let themselves be limited by their gear. It's the creativity that pulls videos and films together, gear is just a bunch of metal boxes and inert circuit boards.
We make it so much more.