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How to Make Great Video on a Budget

Justin Watkins

February 2016

tallgrass-8bit-pale-ale

Video creation and production can seem like a huge undertaking for marketing teams. From video planning to execution, the resources below can help your team make the most of the time and money available to you.

1. Don’t skimp on time.

If you’re on a budget, the best investment you can make in a video project is good planning. What type of video is this? Is it a product demonstration? Is it promotional, tutorial, instructional? Create a mood board so that your team is on the same page about the video’s content, look and feel.

Sites like Pinterest, GoMoodBoard, Mural.ly and Evernote are great resources for creating a mood board.

2. Always storyboard.

Invest time early in the process to map out your video and you’ll waste less time when you’re trying to produce.

Storyboarding Resources

3. Decide roles.

If you have a small team, decide who’s shooting, who’s directing, who’s talking, who’s producing. Most importantly, respect those roles during production.

4. Get the right video tools.

Depending on the type of video you’re creating, you might need a screencasting or motion graphics program. A solid idea and storyboard will help you determine the right tool to use for your video.

Screencasting

Motion Graphics

  • VideoMakerFX
  • Prezi ($5/month): Combine Prezi with a screencasting program like Camtasia and a deft hand and you can create visually interesting, but not overloaded, videos.

Other

  • PlaceIt (free, or $30/month for high-res): Have an app to demo? PlaceIt offers stock images and video that makes it easy to see the product in action.

4. Don’t skimp on equipment.

It’s often overlooked or taken for granted, but bad audio can ruin a great video. Make sure you’re recording high-quality audio. The Zoom H2 recorder is an incredibly affordable, portable recorder that outputs amazing quality video for its size and price.
You don’t have to spend a ton to get a great camera, but you should make sure you’re making the right investment. If you’re into Canon you could start with a Rebel t5i or a 5D Mark iii. Make sure you get a decent tripod that allows for ease of motion – the last thing you want is a creaky, shaky pan the day you’re shooting.

The Final Word

We’ve thrown a lot of DIY at you. We love to see teams creating their own content, but some of the best advice we can give is to know when to bring in the pros. Content is a shared responsibility. Know what your team members already have on their plates, and be realistic about what you can produce, and when you need more support.

8Bit_PaleAle

What We’re Drinking

8-Bit Pale by Tallgrass Brewing Co in Manhattan, KS. This American Pale Ale is the Tallgrass flagship beer for a reason. Fun brand. Delicious beer. And I’m told is “hop-rocketed” just before packaging. Pick some up. You can’t miss it.