Six steps to making a marketing video

by | Jul 12, 2023 | Content, Video

Marketing videos are a great addition to your marketing funnel. Whether you are looking to create an explainer video or product demo, they all follow a similar process. Video creation can be exciting and fun, I mean who hasn’t dreamed of being a Hollywood producer at one point in their lives? To help you get started on your journey, we’ve outlined the six main steps to creating a marketing video. Let’s go!

The six steps to creating a marketing video

Making a video is fun and challenging but the final product is definitely worth it. With 68% of consumers preferring to watch videos to learn about new products or services, compared to other written materials or presentations, it’s a must-add to your marketing strategy.

To help you out, we’ve broken out the video-making process into six steps. Depending on the type of video you are looking to create, you may find that steps or team members will alter slightly, but the overall method is the same.

Step 1: Determine your team

Creating a video takes a village, and before kicking off the project, it is important to name who will be the key players throughout the process.

For a successful video, you will need:

  • Shareholders/main decision-makers: These are the members of your team that give the approvals and sign-off
  • Project manager: The main contact and go-between for the decision-makers and other team members. This is the person that also keeps the project on track
  • Writer: The person responsible for understanding your goals and writing the perfect  script
  • Designer: Creates the video design elements (logos, graphics and more)
  • Director: The one who brings your vision to life
  • Producer: Coordinates and manages the video production process
  • Animator: Designs and produces all video animation
  • Production team: Includes your technicians, camera operators, talent scouts and more

Depending on the type of video you are wanting to create, not all these roles will be needed, and some roles may be combined. For example, if you want an animated video, there is no need for a whole production team.

Working with a marketing agency pays off in this scenario. A creative agency should have access to  a video production crew that they can manage on your behalf, so all you have to do is work directly with your agency contact,  and they take care of the rest.

Step 2: Kick-off call

Now that you have a team assembled, the next step on the journey to making a video (and for any project really), is a kick-off call. This is your time to discuss the vision for your video. Come with the project brief in hand, and review it with the team. Talk about the goal, the story you want to create, the feelings you want the viewer to have and the actions you want them to take. It helps if you can bring examples of other video styles and storylines you like, to give everyone an idea of how you want the end product to look.

During a kick-off call, it is also the time to hammer out the details of the video as well, including:

  • Length of time
  • Budget
  • Finish date
  • Use of actors, animation, stock photography, live shots
  • Are product videos needed?
  • Branding
  • If/how many social clips to create

The main decision-makers, as well as the designer, producer, director, and project manager, should be on the call. It is important to have everyone on the same page when starting a video to  ensure you are able to stay on budget and on schedule. The last thing anyone needs is to take an accidental diversion off course because these things weren’t clearly laid out in the beginning.

Step 3: Scriptwriting

Writing a script can be one of the more challenging parts of the video process. It’s all about turning that big-picture discussion from the kick-off call into a visual story. The end goal is to boil down an entire storyline into a matter of 30-90 seconds, or approximately 75 – 200 words (depending on the predetermined length).

Our recommendation is to start with the story idea, create a rough outline of how the video will progress, who the characters will be, the location, etc. and then write it from there. Always keep your audience and end goal in mind.

The script should include visual recommendations to give the designer, producer and director some guidelines for your vision. Once you have written your script, make sure to time yourself as you read it slowly out loud. Do this exercise at least two to three times, to ensure your script is within the appropriate time limit. If script writing is not your thing, you’ll want to use a copywriter with experience writing video scripts. Then, all you have to do is review the script and comment with your thoughts and edits.

Step 4: Storyboarding

Once the script has been approved, it is passed on to the video team for storyboarding. A storyboard is a visual representation of your script, sketched out frame by frame by the designer. It is a very important step and is the guide or roadmap for the video that will be used throughout the production process.

It is important that you and your team (including the shareholders) take time to review the storyboard thoroughly. Yes, you will want to proof the script and make sure it is accurate, but also study how the designer and videographer are bringing your story to life. Do your vision and theirs line up?

Ironing out the details, design and scenes now will save time and money. It is easier and faster for the designer and videographer to make changes to the storyboard than it is to the video. If you are not on the same page, now is the time to have a call with the video team to discuss what needs to be updated and get everyone on the right track.

Step 5: Video production

And now, the fun part: video production. With the script and the storyboard approved, the video production team can get to work on creating the video itself. Video production time depends on the type and length of the video itself. For example, if you are doing an animated video, it may take about 10 business days to create the first draft, since it is done in a studio. However, a live-action video may take 3-4 weeks or more to complete, depending on casting, location coordination, days on set and more.

For live action, it is important to have a decision-maker from your team on set, should any questions or last-minute changes arise. Discussions and approvals can happen at the moment, versus stopping production to make phone calls and track down stakeholders.

If you are including any product demos in your video, confirm with the producer the specifications needed before supplying the shots. They may need a certain resolution or size and it’s better to get that upfront instead of going back and redoing work later.

Step 6: Approval and use

Once your video is created, your team can give it a thorough review. Small edits, such as changes to a design element or even background music can be made fairly quickly. Larger edits, like changes to voice-over or live shots, can take longer, especially if it means going back on set and redoing a scene.

Once your video is approved, you will be given an MP4  file that you can use on your website, social and more. If you negotiated social video clips at the beginning of your project, these will be provided at this time as well, and you can start sharing right away.

Lights, camera, action!

You can never go wrong with adding a marketing video to your marketing funnel and strategy. Not only are they fun to create, but they are eye-catching and allow you to showcase your brand in a new and different way. Don’t let a tight budget scare you away from creating the video of your dreams. There are many options and types of videos out there to fit your needs.

Looking for a little inspiration for your next video? At Content Matterz, we’ve enjoyed partnering with many of our clients on their video projects. Check out some of our final products.