#8 in our Top Ten Tips to Engaging Content: Post Production Tips Editing, Animation and Sound

Published by TEN ALPHAS | 30th September 2020

You’ve got a story to tell. A visual story. That’s why we’re here in the first place, right? A lot of factors are involved with successfully executing visual storytelling, but the most important could very well be editing.

Don’t be discouraged. You don’t have to be Spielberg to get it right, but we’re going to share some top-level best practices that might get you close.

Planning

Consider creating a general outline of what you want to shoot and what footage you will need. This will keep the editing process efficient and avoid having to go back to reshoot later.

Transcripts

There is life before Rev.com and life after Rev.com.
Beforehand, if we had a 30minute interview, we would get it transcribed manually or have a horrible time scrubbing through video.
Now, with Rev.com, you upload the audio file and before you know it a word document of the transcript is sent to you for the fee of $1/minute.

From there, you can do your selects, or 'golden moments' as we like to call them, and can then create your paper edit.

AND it is also the first draft of the accompanying blog article!

Pacing

The speed of cutting can have a significant impact on your final product. To increase the dramatic tension, increase the number of shots and number of cuts. Now we're not expecting Bourne identity style editing here, but more shots and more cuts will increase the pace.

Music

The right musical score can really elevate a dull video, however it should never be distracting. Always research the copyright implications of any music you choose to use in your final cut. Free and royalty free options are always the safest approach to avoid trouble down the road.  Here are a few places to start:

Free
YouTube library
Free Music Archive 

Paid
Musicbed
PremiumBeat
Musicvine
Epidemic Sound

Call to Action

When editing, always remember your creative goal. Ask yourself what your mission is. Consider what you want people to do after watching your video. Take the time to make your film compelling, evoke emotions and effectively communicate your message. By combining a visual and audio call to action, you can expect the best results. 

Software

The first step to improving your editing process is to choose the best software possible. We highly recommend software such as Premiere Pro, however there are many free applications available that produce quality results. Here are a few to check out.

Free
Blender
Lightworks
Shotcut

Paid
Adobe Premiere
Final Cut Pro
Avid

Titles

Depending on the video type and the information you need to communicate, you may need to add titles to your video. Most editing applications allow you to create text on a background. It’s important that your titles  are clean and not distracting. Always follow your brand guidelines and styling. If you don’t have formal brand guidelines, make sure you are being consistent with colour and typography throughout.

The titles available include:

Opening Credit

You’re going to want to give yourself some credit when you’re all done with the editing—you certainly deserve it. Open your video with a clean acknowledgment of who produced the video. Be creative with it. Don’t just slap a logo in a frame with your company name and the video title. And don’t settle for the first title that comes to mind. Work on the name, try to brainstorm 20 different titles and go from there. Be cheeky, have fun with it. You may surprise yourself.

Lower Thirds

Depending on your video, you may need to introduce a person who appears on camera. One way to do this is with a lower third. This is the graphic that appears over the visual of the person and indicates their name, title and organisation. 

Supers

In certain circumstances, you may want to emphasize key information without being repetitive or squandering video time. Do this by using supers. Supers are text overlays that can highlight key messages, special offers, golden quotes, and more.

The Closer

Similar to the opening credits, display credit for anyone who was a key part of the film—actors, locations, behind-the-scenes helpers. Use the style created in the opening credit to ensure consistency. A good graphic designer can create templates in Illustrator for all of these pieces. These are usually editable and can be updated very easily for future films.

Sound

Like music in your video, sound effects can be very helpful…or very harmful. Remember—a little goes a long way and can a lot of depth to your final cut. You can search a number of sound libraries that offer very low cost sound effects. Or you could schedule into your shoot time to capture sound effects with your mic.

Top Ten Tips of Engaging Content, brought to you by TEN ALPHAS and supported by City of Sydney