Whether it’s interviewing customers, your MD making a company announcement, or introducing your team, interview-style videos are a powerful way to enhance the human connections of your organisation so it’s important to get them right. With a few simple rules, you can ensure that your interviews are easy to shoot, visually engaging and interesting for the viewer.
Benefits of Using Interview-Style Videos
"Customers Don’t Buy From People They Like,
They Buy From Those They Trust"
Interview videos provide an authenticity that written content struggles to convey. Hearing from an expert gives the viewer that human connection they need to build trust and influence their buying decision. Interview videos play an important role in humanising your brand. Hearing from the people behind the brand allows your audience to gain understanding and insights into the company in a more direct way, bringing it to life in all its variety and charm.
Different Types of Interview-Style Videos
There are many types of interview videos you can create such as:
Thought Leadership Videos
Corporate Social Responsibility Videos
"Interview-style videos can also help you with the recruitment process, getting job seekers excited about your business"
Hearing from employees from the organisation are a great way to showcase the authentic culture within a company and can influence whether a person would choose to work their or not.
Outside the obvious interview style videos, most videos you create will contain someone speaking to camera. So learning the following tips will improve your video quality overall.
1. Preparation is key
Be early and be prepared.
Check that you have enough battery power and memory on your phone.
Check the microphone is working and that there is no annoying background noises in the room. Turn off the aircon and close the windows.
Give your interviewees as much advance notice as you can, which will help them prepare what they will say and what they will wear. No-one likes to be flustered going on camera.
While it's good to let them know the topics you'll be covering, don't give them the exact questions you will ask as it's better that their answers are natural and spontaneous.
2. Background & Framing
Selecting the right background for your interview is important. Ideally the location will give some context for the interview but it shouldn't be too distracting - you want your audience watching the interviewee, not what's going on in the background. Good examples can include the shop or factory floor, a balcony overlooking a hotel lobby or the outside of your office.
Use the Rule of Thirds to frame the interviewee. The filming screen is divided by grid lines. You should place your subject at one of the intersecting points (see image above), which is more visually appealing than square in the middle of the shot. Many people find it intimidating to look straight at the camera, so position yourself slightly to the left or right of camera, and have them address their answers to you instead.
Keep your camera level with their eyeline, so you don't unintentionally reveal a bald spot or several chins! There are other creative reasons for going lower and higher depending on how you want the interviewee to come across as. If you are looking down on the interviewee then they will come across as smaller and less significant. Shooting from a lower angle will make them appear more imposing and impressive.
3. Questions & Delivery
Don’t ask questions that will lead to a yes/no answer. One way around this is to ask them to repeat the question in their answer, which will really help you when it comes to editing your video.
"Tell me what you love most about working here?"
"I love working at ACME Inc. because we are a very tight team that work on really interesting projects all the time."
To help shape the interview into an interesting piece of video content, ask your subject to deliver their lines at a modest pace and pause between each point. If they are speaking too quickly then say so and get them to slow down.
Stay quiet and do not interrupt unless they have gone off topic. Let them finish their sentence and then ask them to repeat or summarise their point. Listen to the interviewee, they may give you the nugget you were looking for.
4. Getting Your Subject To Relax
For a great interview piece, it's vital that you put the interviewee at ease, making them feel comfortable and confident. Smile, maintain eye-contact and nod to show that you are genuinely interested in what they are saying.
"This may sound obvious, but maintaining positive body language is crucial on both sides of the interview table. If you want to immediately put your candidate at ease, keep smiling, offer them an open posture and don’t be afraid to have a laugh (if the opportunity arises)."
If the interviewee trips over a word let them finish and go again rather than interrupting them and making them more anxious. Listen to what they are saying rather than reading your next question. They may say something that needs more clarity or needs follow-up with another question.
5. Using B-Roll Footage
Adding relevant B-Roll footage will really bring your video to life and keep your audience engaged. A mix of wide-shots, mid-shots and close-ups is ideal. Use the 5 Shot Rule to get additional footage of your interviewee - close-ups of their hands, face, Over-The-Shoulder, wide and very wide or gesticulating (hands only).
These “cutaways” will make your edit much easier as you can drop in a selection of these shots throughout the video to keep it visually engaging. You can also include shots of the location if relevant, the company and any shots that will help the interviewees points come across.
Things to avoid .......
Using pull up banners - instead add your logo to the video as a more subtle way to incorporate your branding.
Putting your subject up against a wall. They should be at least two feet in front of the background for better depth of field.
Putting them between you and a window - all you will see is their silhouette.
If the sun is beaming in through the window then move deeper into the room. You don’t want the interviewee squinting or the light changing due to clouds. Pick a nice evenly lit area.
Spot lights over the head of your interviewee lead to unflattering shadows under the nose and eyes. They will thank you later.
I hope you now feel confident enough to start planning your interview video knowing you have all the tips and tricks to create a high quality piece of content.
Video Sherpa's streamlined, cloud-based platform enables teams to film, edit, collaborate and publish their own video content on one central dashboard. Those interview videos will be a piece of cake with Video Sherpa on your side...
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