For PR Professionals Who Create Videos, Script and Format Determine the Quality and Budget

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For PR Professionals Who Create Videos, Script and Format Determine the Quality and Budget

If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video can be worth a million — especially today, when you can distribute your video online so easily. You may be surprised at how cost-effective a video can be, if you use certain time-tested formats.

Corporate or industrial videos can solve many communications and public relations problems.

Over the years, I’ve learned that the writer of a video script has a great influence on the eventual cost of the project, because the writer is also, in effect, the producer. Knowledge of the production process can be factored in to the way the script is written, which dictates the format and production requirements for the video.

By applying carefully selected production formats, you can produce a premium quality video to be proud of, without taking out a mortgage to do it.

Consider video communications if you are:

— Selling a technical product to a technical audience.

— Communicating a non-profit or healthcare message to the community, and wishing to convey a “human face and voice” on behalf of your institution.

— Conveying complex information, i.e. healthcare clinical information, financial services information, etc.

— Conveying your organization’s capabilities to prospective customers/users.

— Communicating a management message to employees, volunteers, supporters.

— Conveying hands-on training techniques and “how-to” procedures.

— Celebrating a company anniversary, e.g. 50 years in business.

— Promoting a healthcare message that can be communicated effectively in interviews with your in-house subject-matter experts.

— Promoting a complicated business topic that is more easily understood via the spoken word than in writing. (Or a topic that would be boring in print, but which would be of broader interest on video.)

Talk with the script writer about the best format. “Format” means how the information is conveyed. Examples: A “talking head” delivering news into the camera like a TV anchorperson; an interview with one or more subject-matter experts; or even a simple slideshow of still photos with a narration. The choice of format will drive your costs more than anything else. A simple interview requires only one camera, one set, and a person to ask questions of your expert. A dramatic narrative, on the other hand, would be far more costly, because it requires a complex script, actors, a set or perhaps multiple location shots, etc.

So work with the writer on the best format for your situation. If the budget is too high, consider changing to another format. Your resulting video may be just as high quality, for less money.

Steve Cebalt of Bottom Line Public Relations is Founder of the Social Marketing Leadership Roundtable in Fort Wayne, Indiana. He specializes in marketing, advertising and public relations issues of interest to nonprofit communications professionals.

Copyright Steve Cebalt 2007 May be used with author acknowledgement

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