Cheap, Effective, Short Videos

Cheap, Effective, Short, Video

I’m going to write a series of posts on how to create videos for your non-profit cheaply and easily. I thought I would start off by sharing one of the recent videos I did for Loaves & Fishes to get donations of water. First take a look at the video (45 seconds long)

With this video I was trying to make it short, quick, and personable.

Keep it short.

I have found in past videos, via the youtube analytics, that unless my videos are really really engaging, viewership drops off a cliff after about 30-45 seconds. My goal on this was to keep the video under 60 seconds, so I was happy to have it end at a short 45 seconds.

Keep it quick.

Your videos must be fast paced. If your video meanders it’s not going to hold the attention of the viewer. Don’t spend 30 seconds with intro music showing the outside of your building. This is the post information age, our attention spans are very limited. This doesn’t mean your video has to jump around to a new shot and new face every 2 seconds, but much more than 30 seconds on a single person gets boring quickly.

Keep it personable

I could have done this video with all subtitles and the voice over, but it wouldn’t be nearly as effective. People want to see people! They want to see the real live faces of those they are helping. I knew I had to connect the text with a real person. I found Billy one of the people receiving services at Loaves & Fishes and he generously volunteered to drink a bottle of water for me. It was quick, simple, and took about 5 minutes to shoot, but it singlehandedly makes this video work.

This video took me about 3 hours to make. That includes brainstorming, writing the narrative, doing the voiceover, shooting the film, and editing. I’m not an expert in videography, but I’m pretty pleased with the small amount of time I had to spend and the quality of this short video.

The one thing I screwed up on was branding the video. I didn’t even include the name of the organization at the end of the call to action, just the website which doesn’t have the full name. Future videos will be well branded.

What do you think? Is this video effective? Does it make you want to donate water? Let me know in the comments.

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