Video is one of the most tried, tested and true methods for delivering public health and safety guidelines. Video content is engaging, effective at communicating potentially life-saving information, and it’s a cost-effective way of training new employees.
Video content is the simplest way to deliver this essential information in the new reality of remote and hybrid working environments. You can also think of it as a customized resource that gives your organization a competitive edge within your industry. A strong and robust orientation process can go a long way in helping your employee retention figures.
A recent survey by the Content Marketing Institute indicates that video is—and will continue to be for many years to come—the most worthwhile investment for marketing and communications teams in countries around the world. This is especially true when it comes to health and safety where visualization is key for the retention of key information.
Especially with pandemic restrictions lifting worldwide, it’s never been easier to add some creative flair to your next training video. But what exactly makes the perfect and engaging video for your company’s health and safety training modules? And is it worth hiring a professional video team to create your workplace safety video? The team at Studio52 has put together this ultimate guide for your company to make a masterpiece, whether you hire the pros like us, or decide to tackle the project in-house.
What’s Your Story?
The story is the most important aspect in the production of any video-making project. There are so many styles you can use to tell your story, from a simple voice-track narrating over some stock visuals to a full-blown dramatic re-creation using actors, props and professional-grade lighting. But you don’t have to let your budget or access to resources dictate the success of your video.
Plan Ahead- A sure way to increase your chances of success in any video production is to start planning early and make sure that everybody involved in the endeavour is going to be on the same page from Day One. This is known as “pre-production” and these meetings are essential to getting your project off the ground and running smoothly from location to scouting, to shooting and editing. Getting your schedule straight and setting expectations early will ensure you stay on budget and don’t waste everybody’s time.
What’s Your Style?
Your budget will determine what style of video you end up shooting and the team at Studio52 will be here to guide you through that process, but remember, no matter what style you choose, a commitment to telling a great story will carry you further than all the fancy special effects or ensembles casts you put together. In any health and safety video, the key formula to stick with is a three-part process that includes: Situational Setup, A Conflict and The Resolution. Always provide context for your audience including what new equipment you’re working with, why it’s dangerous, and how to solve the problem so nobody gets hurt. At the end of the day, you’re trying to teach a lesson about leadership.
Dialogue- Know your audience when you sit down to write the script. Don’t use overly complex terminology or bombard your viewers with lots of numbers—that is, unless you have a creative way of displaying them. Inject humour whenever possible if it’s appropriate because a light-hearted attitude will keep people engaged for longer.
Talk To Your Staff- It can be a useful tactic to include video clips, such as statements and reflections from your employees because they’re more likely to empathize and relate with their peers than some stranger or executive leadership. Do not script their responses, but ask the right questions and you’ll find that you’ll most likely get a thoughtful and organic response that will really resonate with their co-workers. If your interview subject stumbles on a thought, it’s totally fine to ask them to repeat it.
Prompt Your CEO- If you do decide to feature your CEO or other members of your executive leadership group, you want them to look and sound as good as possible. Think about the backdrop, their lighting and consider investing in a makeup artist. Finally, you don’t want to waste their valuable time by doing multiple takes and you don’t want to risk their reputation by having them stumble or stammer on camera. The solution to this is using a teleprompter. There are many apps available, both free and paid that you can utilize.
Use Different Angles- If you want to keep your audience engaged, it’s easier if you use multiple camera angles. Even for interviews, if you can have a multi-camera setup, you will be thankful during the editing process. Avoid using too many wide shots because that can get boring very quickly. If you’re filming employees using machinery and other props, do lots of closeups and medium shots so you have some variety to choose from in the post-production process.
You don’t have to always have the camera locked off. Use tracking or panning techniques to follow a person as they walk around the workshop or follow them from behind in a hallway. Another effective camera trick is a slow zoom in or slow zoom out to emphasize something. You can get creative in the editing suite after shooting to add some of these effects, but the most impressive shots will come with a little fancy camera work during the main production.
Light It Up!
Many workplaces have dingy lighting or fluorescent lighting that can turn your video’s subjects’ skin an unflattering colour. Try to invest in some proper lighting kits for your shoot so you can make the shots feel warm. If you’re on a budget, try to utilize as much natural light as possible. Overcast days are the best times to shoot outside or near windows.
What’s That Sound?
Poor sound quality can turn people off a video very quickly and distract from the important messaging you’re trying to get across to your employees. It’s important to invest in some microphones. Not a stick mic like the ones you see at a podium, but small microphones that can clip to your shirt and get wired to a battery pack that can be attached to a belt or dropped inside a jacket pocket. Follow this advice and you’ll come across as extremely professional. Having this kind of smaller-sized microphone that clips onto someone is especially important if you are filming someone in a loud workspace such as a factory floor or workshop.
Get Animated- Shifting away from using real-life actors and incorporating some animation can really inject some flash into your video and perk up your audience. Statistically, the human brain will retain more than 90% of an image as opposed to just 10% of the written word. Using bouncy music, colourful graphics and an engaging voiceover person can go a long way to making your production a memorable one.
Extra Content- If you made a great video, now you have a captive audience to push towards additional content or “bonus content” on your company website. Direct viewers to a website where employees can watch more instructional videos, download educational PDFs and retrieve contact information about who they can reach out to if they have additional questions. If it’s not too out-of-step with the tone of your business, you could consider putting together a “blooper reel” that people can watch online.
Get Social- If the video doesn’t contain any sensitive or confidential information about your business, consider posting the videos on social media. It will show the public that you care about your workers—potentially attracting new employees. It also lets your employees watch the video anytime and on any platform. If you have an internal social network such as Teams or Slack, you could also challenge your employees to share their own safety tips and stories with the allure of a possible prize to be won. This will increase engagement and boost morale about a sometimes mundane topic!
Make sure every part of your production conveys the excitement and passion your team had for making this project. The extra thought you put into sound, lighting and most importantly—the storytelling—will be very evident and your audience will appreciate the quality of production. Be fun, be informative and be relatable to the audience you’re trying to educate.
Studio52 Is Here To Help
The mass return of workers to offices in a post-pandemic world is going to prompt a lot of questions regarding health. You’ll want your employees to feel cared about and safe. That’s why investing in a top-quality health and safety video is a crucial investment for any organization—no matter its size or budget.
Studio 52 is here to help with the entire process for all stages of production and planning. It’s easy to get overwhelmed by schedules, spending and editing. Trust our team of talented and experienced videographers and editors with your health and safety video. Contact us today for a free consultation.