August 9, 2011

16 tips for making video interviews come alive

nonprofit video

 

How your nonprofit can capture the best stories on camera

Target audience: Nonprofits, NGOs, cause organizations, social enterprises, brands, educators, video producers, Web publishers, storytellers, individuals.

This is part 2 of a two-part series on video storytelling. Also see part 1:
How to find amazing, powerful stories for your nonprofit video

By Lindsay Oberst
Socialbrite staff

Lindsay OberstStories are a great tool, which nonprofits too often don’t take advantage of. Whether you’re running a campaign or conveying your organization’s mission by spotlighting the people you help, you should be thinking about how to find stories that move people to action.

Once you uncover those stories, it can be hard to get people to tell them on camera and to get the details needed to make an awesome, powerful story. But by following the suggestions below, you can come away with great visual stories that should resonate with your community. And remember, a photo collage with a voiceover can be just as effective as a traditional video.

The following are tips from people who regularly make videos for social good, including Chris Yates of Huddle Productions, Cara Jones of Storytellers for Good, Tritia Pocci, who has created strategy for marketing media content, and Danielle Bernstein of Clear Films.

1Understand your goal. Think about what you want to accomplish with the video: Enlighten people about a cause? Move them to action? Don’t muddy it up with multiple missions. Have a plan.

2“Research, research, research,” Pocci said. Take the time to be inspired, know your subject and figure out what will work in your video.

“Interviews can take on a life of their own, and sometimes that is where the magic happens.”
— Tritia Pocci

3Keep it really simple. “Start with a simple storyline, get clear about the message you want to communicate and visualize the most concise way to convey this message through an interview beforehand,” Pocci said.

4 Don’t bring notes to the video session. This will help the person on camera feel more at ease and will cut down on distractions. “Subconsciously they’ll think they’re being interviewed and they’ll clam up,” Yates said. So just memorize a few key points that you want to cover. Adds Pocci: “Interviews can take on a life of their own, and sometimes that is where the magic happens.”

nonprofit video storytelling

5Don’t have the person look directly at the camera if your subject will be sitting down. Place yourself to the left or right and have them look at you. This will help them feel more comfortable as they talk.

6Work with only a two-person crew: a videographer and an interviewer. “I generally start these conversations while the videographer is setting up and just have him or her tap me on the shoulder when the camera is rolling,” Jones said. But remember: You can be your own crew, too, and do a one-on-one interview.

7Use people who want to be on camera. “They are generally the most articulate and comfortable,” Jones said. Continue reading

August 3, 2011

How to find amazing, powerful stories for your nonprofit video

Video stories

 

Strategies for identifying stories that exemplify your organization’s mission

Target audience: Nonprofits, NGOs, cause organizations, social enterprises, brands, educators, video producers, Web publishers, storytellers, individuals.

Part 1 of a two-part series focused on using video to tell compelling stories. Also see part 2:
16 tips for making video interviews come alive

By Lindsay Oberst
Socialbrite staff

Lindsay OberstAll too often, nonprofit organizations fail to take advantage of their greatest asset: stories.

Stories help us interact with our world and make sense of it. They link us together and shape our view of the world. Nonprofits, however, often miss the stories that surround them; the stories that can help them raise more funding, expand awareness of their cause and reach their goals.

Rob Wu is the creator of CauseVox, a platform to help nonprofits raise funds. He believes that nonprofits are missing a huge opportunity in stories.

“Generally, nonprofits use some level of storytelling but not to the fullest,” Wu said in an email. “The nonprofits that use stories in a meaningful way craft an overarching narrative of their organization and supporting stories that compel their audiences to action. Often, I hear nonprofits talk about fundraising strategies or a communications plan, but seldom do they talk about a storytelling strategy.”

Using stories is something that nonprofits can do in many areas of their work, yet videos are a particularly powerful tool. Especially considering that U.S. Internet viewers watch almost 20 hours of online video per month, according to statistics released in June.

Video storytelling draws us in by appealing to our emotions — a faraway woman with big eyes telling us about the children she can barely feed or the excitable entrepreneur full of passion for his idea. And then if done properly, video stories cause people to take action. Continue reading