How to Plan a Successful Video Shoot

September 28, 2017
September 28, 2017 wholestreet

Like most great things, a great video is planned properly. Whether it’s a music video, promotional content, or something else, everything is taken into account. The videographer carefully chooses a location. The producer fills each role with the right cast. The creative team spells out a unique narrative. All the details are accounted for and now it’s time to film.

Well, we’re the first to admit that planning a successful video shoot is easier said than done. That’s why we’re so adamant that all your I’s are dotted and T’s are crossed before you begin the filming process. By properly planning out your video shoot you’re more likely to avoid mistakes, stay on schedule, and create the video you and your team set out to make.

Here are some critical pre-production tips and strategies that will help get your video shoot off on the right foot:


Any successful or compelling video will contain a unique angle or narrative. What story are you setting out to tell? And, who are you telling this story to? By pinpointing your message and audience, you’re better able to visualize real locations to film in and know what equipment you’ll need.

Shot Structure

With your unique narrative and audience in mind, it’s time to consider the video’s shooting structure. Perhaps it’s a promotional video that will include talking heads. Maybe your video tells a story that requires smooth, steady panning. It’s possible that you’re targeting a younger audience, calling for the use of quick camera movements and various angles. This is pertinent information that will assist in choosing your location, equipment, and cast.

Location Scouting

Let’s find a place to film! When doing so, it’s essential to know what time of day you plan to shoot and to visit potential locations at that time. Carefully observe the environment and take into account the natural lighting, ambient sounds, and any nearby structures or buildings. One thing that is easily overlooked is the availability of electricity. Make sure you can power your equipment!


Speaking of equipment… By now, you have a clear idea of the gear you need based on your video’s message, audience, and location. Apart from having the right video equipment, it’s crucial that you enrich your set with props. Consider clothing, food, cars, objects, or anything needed to help in creating an aesthetically compelling video. Utilize your crew and/or assistants to get and maintain your props throughout the filming process.

The Cast

Need actors? You’ll need to hold a casting call. If your video is promoting a business, then taking advantage of the business owner, managers, or employees to use as cast members is worth considering. To that end, you may even require real customers to enliven your video. However, note that the use of actors makes more sense if the video calls for scripted movement and dialogue.

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