From the inception of the written word, most communication was done through visual and written means — writing letters, creating physical works of art like paintings, and even, as time went on, through mediums like newspapers. For a long time, this was the standard way people interacted over long distances and documented information.
As technology advanced, audio became a bigger part of how people received and communicated information through tools like the telephone and radio. But over the past several decades, video has overtaken both these mediums as a primary communication and documentation method.
We went from the overwhelming popularity of the cinema in the early-mid 20th century to the prominence of television in the past few decades. Now, we’re entering the Internet era, a massive shift which began in the late 90s and has truly come into its stride in the past decade.
Video is one of the most important mediums for entertainment and communication today. It incorporates many different kinds of media into one consumable product that people can watch on their phones, computers, televisions, and in some cases, even watches. It is one of the most useful and effective mediums for everything from recreation to business explainer videos.
Because video incorporates so many different forms of media, creating well-organized and effective videos means organizing the production process as much as possible. If the process of creating isn’t done effectively, the odds are good that the end product will be low quality and less capable of accomplishing the purposes that the video needs to.
Because of that, video production has become a process and art form that almost all high-quality videos follow, whether viewers realize it or not. Exceptional videos make use of careful lighting, camera placement, sound design, and much more to create a finished product that works.
While making a video is a fairly complicated process, it is something that anyone can do with a little effort and planning. Here is everything you need to know about the process of video production so that you can make the best videos possible.
What Is the Video Production Process?
Video production is the process of creating videos. It starts with conceptualization and scripting, moves through capturing footage, and ends with editing and polishing. Essentially, anything you do when creating a video is part of the video production process.
There are three general steps to follow when creating a video—pre-production, production, and post-production. These steps help separate the different processes that go into making a video and help ensure the whole process is as organized as possible. Due to the wide variety of disciplines that go into video production, it’s always important to separate the process into different steps so they can be individually handled in an organized, non-overwhelming way.
How Many People Do You Need for Video Production?
The video production process can be done with as many or as few people as the project requires. Feature films, for example, can have hundreds, if not thousands of employees all working together on the same project to make sure that every detail is as perfect as possible. Small businesses and YouTubers often run on smaller crews, making the process quicker and more efficient but often less technically impressive.
What Tools Do You Need for Video Production?
Thanks to modern technology, professional-level video production can be done with any budget, as long as their creators have the skill and knowledge needed. Videos can be produced using a smartphone or several cameras that cost more than a car. They can be edited on laptops or pro video rigs that cost tens of thousands of dollars. While the sheer production value will go up based on the gear used, nearly everything comes down to how well each step of the video production process is executed.
The quality of a video will come down to who is producing it and how skilled they are. Luckily, all of the skills of video production can be learned online. Particularly helpful tools include YouTube tutorials and video production forums. Like any highly specified skill or trade, video production takes time and effort to truly master. However, with the tools readily available to the public, it is more than possible to achieve.
The Three Main Steps of Video Production
When making a video, almost all processes incorporate these three steps. They help make sure there aren’t any key aspects missed and help the creators make a professional, well-organized video.
Different people gravitate to different stages in the video-making process. That’s why many dedicated scriptwriters, cinematographers, and video editors exclusively do that one task. However, knowing all of these processes can help ensure the production as a whole goes smoothly, especially in small teams.
Here are the three steps in video production and how you can accomplish them as effectively as possible.
Pre-production is the stage of video production that is all about planning. It’s where you conceptualize the video, determine the target audience, decide what content will go into it, write the script, and prepare for the live shoot.
This is the most important stage of the project in many ways because it’s where video-makers decide what they want to do. This is where the whole direction of the production is decided, and all the pieces that will happen later on are determined.
During this stage, scripts are written, filming locations are decided upon, and screenplays are developed, among other steps. While it may seem less exciting than hands-on camera work, it’s critical to get it right the first time. When you put effort into planning everything perfectly, the following stages will be easier to handle.
Production is where the actors are on set, the cameras are rolling, and footage is captured. If the pre-production process is done well, most of this stage is just checking things off of a list and ensuring they are completed properly.
This is also the stage that often involves the most stress. While the pre-production and post-production stages can take an indefinite amount of time, the production stage is typically limited by the time the actors, cinematographers, and locations have available. Because of that, it’s essential to make sure that you have access to the best people and assets possible within your budget.
Like pre-production, if you execute this process well, it will make the post-production process simpler. This saves time and makes it so there will be as few mistakes as possible to compensate for in the editing room.
This is where everything comes together and becomes a finalized product. Depending on the nature of the production, this can require anywhere from one to several thousand people to do.
One of the most important parts of this process is editing. All the footage is put into one place and pieced together so it becomes coherent and clear. This often means cutting different takes together and jumping between different camera angles, among other things. The more quality is invested into the production stage, the easier the editing process will be.
Other aspects of the post-production process include sound editing, color correction, color grading, motion graphics, and special effects. These all work together to ensure that the final video looks, sounds, and feels as professional and high quality as possible. The whole purpose of the post-production process is to tie everything together to make everything feel fantastic and complete.
All three of these stages are critical to making a high-quality video. Make sure that you spend an appropriate amount of time and effort on all of them. When you maximize each stage, your video will be more likely to reach its full potential.
Why Is Focusing on the Video Production Process Important?
If you are going to create a video, it’s important to do it right. With the number of videos in the world today, it’s harder than ever to stand out using this medium of communication. If you want to make an impact, you need to create videos of the highest quality possible. That means that the production process needs to be as professional and effective as possible.
Here are some of the reasons why investing your time, energy, and occasionally money into high-quality video production is one of the most important things you can do for a company.
It Creates a Positive Impression
When someone is researching a company for the first time, one of the first things they will see is their website. One of the best things to highlight on a website’s homepage is an explainer video that effectively introduces the prospective customer to the company. If that video is high quality, odds are good that the viewer will develop a positive first impression of the company. If the video looks amateurish or the content is low quality, it may create a negative first impression.
The video will increase in quality when you invest time in the production process. A well-thought-out video will be as clear, engaging, and focused as possible. This will lead to higher levels of accessibility for the viewer and allow them to engage with the video positively. This, in turn, will make it easier for the company to grow in its marketing efforts and public perception.
It Increases Organization in the Creative Process
When you put more focus and intentionality on the practices behind video production, the process becomes more organized. In many cases, the final product will only be as good as the planning and pre-production that went into it. If you follow the video production process, you will be more likely to create a video that accomplishes the goals that you’ve set.
The three steps of the video production process are designed to separate the elements that go into making a video so you can do them in the most efficient order possible. Doing these steps in the right order allows you to prepare for later steps in a way that will increase the quality of your video as a whole. Working in an organized manner will help ensure everything goes according to plan and enables your video to reach its full potential.
It Makes Video Creation Easier
The video production process is designed to make it easier to create high-quality videos. While some people still prefer to shoot from the hip and focus on using spontaneous ideas and concepts in their video-making processes, it’s more consistently effective to follow the traditional video production process.
Following the standard video production process makes everything a lot easier. When separating the different stages, you can look at each step more objectively, which is essential for ensuring your video is of the highest quality possible. On the other hand, when you bundle together processes and decisions that shouldn’t be happening simultaneously, it can make your video feel rushed and unprofessional.
When you go out of order, you’ll likely have to go back and fix more mistakes from decisions made at the wrong time. Remember—it’s better to get something right once than to fix it multiple times. Follow the video production process, and you’ll be sure to create great videos with ease.
How 7 Wonders Can Help
If your company doesn’t have the team or capabilities to create professional videos on its own, don’t worry — that’s why 7 Wonders exists. We have teams of people with decades of experience in all kinds of videos and have worked with everyone from independent creators and small businesses to massive corporations. Our specialty is working with people to help take their ideas all the way from simple concepts to fully-fledged professional-grade videos.