Create Videos That Captivate Videos can make your information more appealing to potential clients and the public. Spreading the Word
Spreading the Word  |   August 01, 2014
Create Videos That Captivate
Author Notes
  • Misty Fuller is with ASHA’s public relations department.
    Misty Fuller is with ASHA’s public relations department.×
Article Information
Practice Management / Telepractice & Computer-Based Approaches / Spreading the Word
Spreading the Word   |   August 01, 2014
Create Videos That Captivate
The ASHA Leader, August 2014, Vol. 19, online only. doi:10.1044/
The ASHA Leader, August 2014, Vol. 19, online only. doi:10.1044/
With the prevalence of smartphones and handheld video recorders, videos are easier and less expensive to create than ever. YouTube, CNN iReport and other such popular video-sharing outlets have expanded our horizons beyond long, highly produced, and expensive videos. Short, no-cost videos are now easy to post—and to access.
As an expert in the field of communication issues, you have a unique opportunity to use online videos to educate others about what you do. Videos should tell a story and showcase your work or a particular project that affects your community. Take a look at these tips and tricks to help you create videos that captivate.
Setting the stage
Highly produced videos are easy to watch because they abide by certain visual guidelines for lighting, spacing, backdrops and other features. If you keep the basics in mind, you can create a video that is just as appealing, without the hassle of professional equipment.
  • Lighting. Before you begin recording, take a few test shots to make sure there’s enough light to make the people and objects in the video clearly visible. Add or remove lighting based on what you see in these test recordings. Simply bringing an extra lamp into the room or adjusting a shade can help dramatically.

  • Zoom and focus. In your test shots, be sure to adjust your zoom and where you stand so that you are close enough to see your subject’s facial features, but far enough away to keep everything you need in the frame. Remember your positioning so that you know where to be when you begin filming the actual video. As you adjust the zoom, keep an eye on the focus and try to reduce any blur. Many smart phones allow you to zoom and keep focus by touching the screen where you want the lens to focus.

  • Background. The backdrop of your video should be appropriate for the topic at hand. If your video is serious, for example, then your background should be serious as well. If possible, keep the background simple so that it doesn’t distract from the subject of the video. Make sure that the color of your backdrop is different from the clothing of the people in your video or they will blend together.

Filming Tips
  • Steady your hands. To get the clearest picture possible, you will need a firm and steady hand to decrease any shaky footage. Many people can film freehand because of video stabilizers built into smartphones and handheld recorders. However, if you are concerned, lean your wrist or elbow on a solid surface while recording.

  • Limit camera movement. If you plan on moving your camera—whether panning side to side, shifting up and down, or walking while filming—try to move at a constant speed. Quick and sudden movements are distracting and difficult to watch. When in doubt, slower movements are better.

  • Check the sound. Choose a quiet place to film. Take test shots to make sure your speakers are audible and to determine if there is any excessive background noise. Based on these sample recordings, you can work with the people in the video to adjust their volume.

Getting started
Once you have practiced a few of these tips and your subjects are comfortable, you’re ready to begin recording the final video. Hit “record” and wait two or three seconds to signal your speaker to begin talking. When you’re ready to stop recording, wait another few seconds to end the video and signal speakers that they are “off air.” Limit your videos to three minutes or less to keep the attention of your viewers.
Remember, if you are filming patients, you will need their written permission to record the video and to share it with anyone else.
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August 2014
Volume 19, Issue 8