Framing Techniques For Local Business Video

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One question I get a lot when it comes to making “talking head” videos for local businesses is…

“Most business owners are horrible in front of the camera and the videos just don’t look professional, how can I make these kinds of videos for my clients without hiring a professional crew?”

I can tell you that I struggled with this for a long time until I started using simple little framing tricks that you see on TV all the time but probably just don’t recoginize what is happening.

Here I demonstrate extremely simple framing techniques that will make a HUGE difference in the effectiveness of your video and solve a lot of problems shooting “non actor” clients.

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18 Replies to “Framing Techniques For Local Business Video”

  1. It really does look better that way but I couldn’t get the song “Jumpin’ Jack Flash” out of my head. Susan @Jack Mize

    1. @totlmktg  Well, Jumpin’ hasn’t been part of my daily routine for a while, but as long as someone is thinking about it…

  2. I like the idea of chunks but I was not comfortable the way you did it. I think a blend transition rather than once second you are on the left and the next frame you are on the right. It made it hard to follow your eyes. I think it would be better if it was a fade even if it was a fast fade. At least then my mind is aware that something is going to change and I can be prepared for it.

    1. @Kevin Morrison  Good point Kevin. Normally I would have “swoosh” sounds, background music and quick swipes. I wanted to keep the focus on the different framing techniques for this one, but I understand where you are coming from. I thing though is I don’t necessarily want the viewers mind to know when something will change. I want to create that disconnect to keep them engaged.  Thanks for the feedback. Good eye.

  3. Once again, great content Jack. I do many of these techniques automatically (didnt realize it…lol), but your information filled in some of my gaps. I’m filming a commercial on a Local Daily Deal site 10/20 and will put this information to use. As usual you go the extra mile, thats why I’m a fan and a customer!

  4. Great video, Jack! I really enjoyed how much crystal-clear instruction you packed in there. 
    re: comments about “jarring” hard edits… I’ve learned from watching 30 years of MTV-style editing that’s completely changed “how things should look on TV”… and then by studying the most popular YouTube channels that have taken things to a whole ‘nother level… In context, with background music and changing background light and graphic overlays… those “hard edits” can really amplify the excitement level, often in direct proportion to how “jarring” the transitions are.  Seriously, if you really want to expand your understanding of video and see the possibilities of creative editing, check out what’s happening on YouTube. I bet you’ll start finding smooth transitions really boring and old-fashioned. 🙂

    1. @Coach Rik  You hit it.  Reality TV, MTV, Low Budget Cable Shows have changed the definition of “professional video” for most viewers.   Thanks for the feedback.

  5. Excellent content, Jack!  I was particularly taken with the resolution.  It almost seemed like it was shot in HD … real crisp, with a real life feel to it.  Were you using a green screen?  There were no shadows and I kept thinking  Mr. Clean … but not for “that” reason … it was just SO WHITE!!!  Thanks for the pointers, my shots always look like a 5 year grabbed the camera and yelled, “Speed!”.  Ugh!

  6. Jack, thanks for  the great info. I have done much of this but it helped to see you put it in perspective.  I was a little taken back with the hard jumps, I can see the need for a little softening of the transitions.  I understand why you left them hard for this video though.  
    Thanks for the material,

  7. Thanks Jack !
    We Like the Tip Of…Making Many Videos ‘Keyword Loaded’….
    With Only changing The Middle.

  8. Great info as usual, Jack – thanks! 
    BTW, did you use standard 3-point (halogen) lighting for your video, or some other technique?  Very clean & crisp.

    1. @SteveHouston Standard lighting, but was against a green screen that was then washed out white.

  9. You are correct about subjects. There has to be something to break up the picture. This gives the viewer to look back and forth at 2 or more things. Also, gives the viewer more to do.

  10. Great content, Jack. I’m new to local business videos but, with your tips, I don’t think anyone will know. Thank you for shortening my learning curve!

  11. This is a great and effective introduction to several important aspects of framing for short videos, particularly those using non professional talent.  The section of editing to allow re-use of material is particularly useful and very well presented.

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