A successful video shoot has many components that need to work seamlessly with each other to make art. Let’s talk about the first step. Concept development.
Video is an audio visual dynamic medium. Therefore almost every element that goes into it has to be thought out beforehand. Without proper planning, the video will suffer from the lack of direction.
There are two major steps that need to be flushed out. First is clearly defining your concept and the second is writing a concise treatment.
Your concept will help solidify your videos main message and the manner in which you deliver the message to you main or primary audience/customers. The treatment is a three part written summary of the video’s purpose, storyline and style. This basically becomes your roadmap to a successful production and will guide you to the intended purpose of the video.
For a successful video, it must deliver a primary message to a primary audience in an effective way. It should differentiate itself from other videos that may be available. To start off, have a brainstorming session. Write down ideas and review them with others. You will find some will work and others may not. Some ideas that are great may not work because of budget or logistic reasons. They may also have to encompass the company’s branding elements. Always define and have in mind the target audience. After all, this is who the video is for. Do the research before ever picking up the camera. I will save a lot of headache later.
After developing a viable concept, we need to understand three important things; to whom the video speaks, how it will speak to them and what will it say. This in turn will help you write the treatment and will keep you on track to the original vision and concept for the project.
The length of the treatment will depend on how complex the production is. It may look like a script, have visual elements or simply state what the visual effect may be. The treatment should be in a chronological order from the beginning to the end of the video. Just try to tell the story in a way that is easy to follow.
The most important benefit of writing a treatment is that it helps moving from a general concept to a roadmap that will keep the production in line. Issues or problems that come up while writing and analyzing the treatment can be solved first on paper rather than on the production set.
On lower productions, the treatment can do a storyboards job in terms of creating compelling and descriptive images with words. It must clearly map out from beginning to end but not necessarily describing every single detail.
Even a simple video can go bad if not planned properly. Do the homework first. Like painting a room, spend time masking the windows and trim, etc. before opening the paint can. The painting will go much smoother, faster and on budget.