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Capturing your client’s PR moments

Posted by Kat Farminer on 1st May 2013

This month we have been discussing how to make the most of attending an event on behalf of a client. Obviously there are costs involved with putting on an event or sponsoring a bigger set up, but what is the point if you can’t capture further collateral to make the most of your spend?

Thinking in more detail about what else you can get from your presence at an event (be it speaking opp, trade show, press conference, etc) will not only help you develop interesting content for your social media pages, but also potential PR assets to benefit wider marcoms activity.

One quick and easy way to do this is to think about filming – and it doesn’t have to cost the earth. Here are some helpful tips:

  1. Equipment – filming something to be used on your website doesn’t need an entire crew of broadcast professionals. Nowadays, even a standard iPhone camera can be enough to handle simple filming tasks if used correctly. Instead, invest in equipment to supplement this, like a tripod or radio mic, which will enhance the quality of what you capture.
  2. Visit the venue – doing a recce will help you spot any quirky extras you can add to your film, such as nicely branded signs, location traits and outside shots before the crowds arrive. All this will help set the scene for your video. It will also allow you to meet the organisers and gain that all-important permission to capture the day for your own records.
  3. Write a shot list – deciding in advance what you want the film to achieve will help you no end. Arrive prepared with a list of shots which link together to make the overall film. They don’t have to be captured in order but you will thank yourself for not missing something vital.
  4. Talk to people – make sure you are asking other thought leaders to appear in your film. Gaining a sense of what others are thinking can add third party credibility to the message you are trying to portray. Just remember to always get the subject to say their name and job title on camera, as it’s much easier than scrabbling around for a pen! Always place a camera on a tripod to film talking heads and NEVER zoom in whilst someone is talking.
  5. It’s all about the edit – good PR videos should generally stick to the three minute rule. Anything longer and you will lose your audience, although we would advise one minute and thirty seconds as the preferable average length. The edit is your chance to show off without breaking the bank – so add in some of those flashy product shots you spent money on and add some background music. Again, this process doesn’t have to cost a lot given the existence of multimedia editing suites such as Nero and iMovie.
  • Al

    Great article you lovely EMLWildfire people. And as someone who has embraced the whole reuse/repackage/repurpose mantra – spot on. A few additional comments about filming events to extend their value…

    Don’t overlook the value of good sound. We normally think of audio as secondary but poor recording will seriously compromise the quality of the finished film. Don’t rely on internal microphones on a camcorder – use an external microphone and position it as close to your subject as possible.

    Use plenty of light – natural sunlight is best. If you’re using artificial light use plenty – low cost cameras don’t perform we’ll in low light.

    Use variety in composition – some long (establishing shots), some mid and some close-up. If possible shoot the piece twice, first as head & shoulders, then as close-up. Mix the two in the edit – use close-ups to emphasise important points.