7 Tips on Shooting a Great Corporate Video

There are a lot of views on rights and wrongs of visual side of corporate videos. In reality it is the best of what you’ve managed to shoot. That’s all.

Something that I have discovered when shooting corporates is this. In order for the video to work: let the location call the shots.

Here are the tips as to how that could be done.

Tip 1:  Interview

Yes, it is a white room in an office full of stationary clutter but try to be creative about it. Ask yourself the following questions:

  •     Can the background be relative to what the interviewee is saying?
  •     If content allows, can there be something interesting like an exotic plant, a sculpture or a poster/painting?
  •    Can you put more branding in the shot? (If its a corporate, having branding as part of the scene will look good)

Tip 2: General Cutaways

Cutaways are essential. No matter how well the shot is lit, you need those. Whichever locations you are in get as much footage that you can in the same room. Put the interviewee in the comfort zone of his or her work and shoot away. Be sure to do a lot of close ups and maybe even focus pulls to spice-up the edit. Even if its a person typing an email on computer. Put the person in the scene. If your style of a corporate allows do a separate set of reaction shots and nodding shots from the interviewer. Its very ENG-style but some clients love it to bits.

Tip 3: Location-specific Cutaways

Apart from the usual set of cutaways have a look at your location: does it have something unique to offer? Is there an interesting artwork in the office, or maybe if it’s a factory some machinery may be moving in a visually interesting way? Fish those out. And try those strange angles and camera moves too!

Tip 4: Contextual Cutaways

Those are the shots, which may put the advertised activity in the context. I am currently working on an advert that promotes a wood chipper. So other processes were filmed such as the tree being sawn down. There were other parties involved and I have filmed them too to make the edit more textured. So do talk to your client and see if you can film the environment where the advertised product or a process is taking place. That can give your video an element of story.

Tip 5: Unleash yourself and experiment

It’s a sweeping statement but after you’ve shot all the “safe” stuff do experiment. The client is normally very supportive of that and will welcome anything that will give the edit an edge.

The example of that sort of stuff could be:

  •     mini crane shots
  •    hand-held point of view shots
  •    whip pans and crush zooms
  •     pull focuses
  •     GoPro footage

I must mention that involvement of GoPro has definitely given my work an edge. It is great for time lapse, action and point of view shots.

Tip 6: Spontaneous shots

You may be taking a long walk in the woods and stumble across a wonderful shot opportunity. Get that shot and put it in the edit, it may work, it may not but you will at least try. I did it once and it certainly gave an edit a pop. Please note that I frequently take DSLR and a light tripod on my walks and I make sure I don’t shoot on private territory. You may have to make sure that you are OK to shoot or use the footage: that is your Country or State dependent, so please make sure you know your local regulations.

Tip 7: Stock Footage

Use stock footage. It can spice up your edit immensely. It is one of those wonderful resources that I feel is very much underused in corporate production. There are a lot of shots you can insert to make the edit look punchier or to emphasize a point conveyed. Apart the obvious I-stock-photo.com there are great sites like Pond5.com

I hope those tips were of help to you and do let me know your opinion too in the comments!

Until next time,

Mike Bogatyrev.

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About zinasemenova

Russian filmmaker and blogger at filmcareer.wordpress.com

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