One of the best ways to suggest credibility and news worthiness is to build your informational video around a news-style setting. In this blog, we’ll give you some tips to save you time and expense in making that happen.
BizVid Communications is a video production leader, located in San Diego, California. While we will use an actual news set that we customized for our client, Global Check, to illustrate our points, a simple chair or chairs configured around a table or counter will do. In those instances it may come across more like a news interview setting instead of a news desk, and that’s okay. Your “on-camera” talent should take on a more demonstrative, factual tone in their delivery, rather than a light, conversational approach. This suggests that the information they are delivering is newsworthy and worth the viewer’s immediate attention.
When assembling your setting, don’t allow the backdrop to be too busy. That will tend to distract the viewer and diminish the power of your video’s content. Another reason for a more neutral background is that you will want to overlay important information in a rectangle over the shoulder of the broadcaster, or between the broadcasters if you have more than one person involved. When you overlay a visual to support what your spokesperson is saying, make sure the rectangle does not violate where the broadcaster is sitting, or where they will be moving their hands.
You want it to look like the information is behind them, as in a true newscasts do. If your announcer violates the space where your rectangle is, it takes away from the news set illusion. Of course, you could actually have a rear screen projection or large, live video screen behind your talent, but that can pose timing problems if the content does not change when the announcer changes a topic. Another solution would be to place a green screen in the rectangle to the rear of your broadcaster and inlay your graphics in post production. But the simplest solution is to dedicate a space for the rectangle, which the announcer will not violate.
It may also be advisable to do cuts and cutaways instead of camera zooms and pans. It becomes more challenging to have your overlaid background graphics zoom as your camera zooms or pan as the camera pans. A little preplanning and no one will be the wiser…and you’ll be saving a lot of time and money in post-production.
Another tip is to vary your shots. You should start and end with a cover shot to establish the entire news set, with your overlaid graphics seeming behind your broadcaster. When you cut to a medium shot or close up of your broadcaster, frame it so that at least a piece of your graphic may be seen over their shoulder, again having the spokesperson avoid the area where graphics will be overlaid. What’s more there may be times that you can cut away to a full screen of the graphics that were behind your broadcaster. This will further vary your shots and add to the feel of a real newscast.
In case you have not guessed by now, this news set approach will work best in a non-live environment, where much of the support visuals and cut-aways can be inserted in post production. And, while there are more nuances that will help you present a news desk feeling…such as lighting and talent selection (by the way, we hired actual newscasters former Fox anchor Estha Trouw and San Diego news/weatherman Gary Kelley), we’ve at least dealt with some of the key areas to turn your informational video into a commanding, news worthy broadcast. Thanks for watching.