Interested in making videos for social media? Join our two-part series in which Anders Larsson from the Anders och Mia production company gives his best tips.
The first part of the series dealt with the tools we need to get started. In part 2, Anders will provide tips on what we should think about when filming and editing.
About Anders Larsson
Anders and his partner Mia Kaasalainen run the production company Anders och Mia. Anders and Mia produce film for the web and social media for a long list of organizations, both private and public. They also teach social video classes at Berghs School of Communication in Stockholm.
Hi Anders! It's time to start filming - what should I be thinking about?
In the last installation, we talked about the importance of planning and of writing an image script. You need to consider what kind of images you will need to relay your message, before you start filming. You also need to think about what shots you're going to use, like close-ups or long shots or whether there will be movement, etc...
Try to vary your material by, for instance, filming the same scene from different angles and types of shots. Also,
think in terms of "action - reaction". This means first showing an action in a clip and then showing the reaction to the event in the next. When we see how the film subject reacts from close up (joy, fear, surprise, wonder, sadness, etc.) we better internalize the film. We recognize ourselves in them, we get a sense of understanding and we feel for them.
What other great tips do you have for people filming for social media?
I recommend that when you're creating videos for social media, you think in terms of modularity when making your production. What I mean by that is planning several productions at a time and categorizing your material so you can quickly and easily reuse parts of your videos in new productions. With time, you will build up your own "image bank" to draw on when you make your social media videos.
Do I need to do all the filming or can I purchase video clips?
You can most definitely combine your own personal material with material you purchase. Just keep in mind that they should both follow the same lines visually and story-wise. For example, if you're making a feature about food artistry in Österlen in Sweden, it can be good to find a stock video of a Swedish tractor in a Swedish field. It would come across as strange if you were to use images from environments that aren't remotely Scandinavian and don't fit
Find videos at
Advice! You can choose to filter your searches to only include video clips.
Informational videos do particularly well with a collage of stills, animated text, voice overs and music. If you use stills, do some digital panning around the image (what is known as the Ken Burns effect) to avoid cramping the video's flow. Make sure than any transitions from moving material to still images has a visual flow that feels natural. If the camera pans off to the right, for example, it could be good to have the movement in your still image
continue in the same direction.
What should I think about when editing my video?
"Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.", Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, author.
In other words, edit away! What is necessary for telling your story? Aside from wanting to express yourself briefly and effectively, you want to create a visual flow in your film that is appropriate for its style and pace.
If you want to learn about classic editing techniques, there are a bunch
of good ideas to be found online. I recommend starting with classic techniques such as "cut on action" (that is, editing in movement) or "L and J cuts".
Written messages - to be or not to be?
There are great advantages to reinforcing your message through text (preferably animated to integrate nicely into your moving images). A clear message in the beginning of your video can help your audience determine whether the contents of your video are relevant to them and whether they want to continue watching.
Naturally, there's a lot to learn in this area, not least how online advertising tools view text in videos, but fortunately, these tools
are good about providing guidance.
In addition to a strong heading, I recommend putting a clear Call to Action at the end of your video. What do you want your audience to do after watching?
How do I show who the video is from?
A good way of showing this is placing your logo up in the right/left-hand corner. Don't put your logo in either of the bottom corners since that is where you will put captions. You should view captions as being an absolute necessary element in your videos. It is all about accessibility and designing for "sound off" settings, not to mention making the contents of your video more searchable (captions can be indexed by search engines).
Thanks for all the great tips Anders. Now it's just a matter of creating social media videos!