4 Steps to Creating Great DIY Web Videos

I’m noticing more and more user-produced video content on the web these days. Many of these videos are badly lit, have poor sound, or the presenter appears uncomfortable or artificial. The danger of having these types of DIY web videos on your site is that they can diminish the user’s overall impression of your website, and your business.

While in most cases you will get the best results by bringing in a professional video production company, there are some occasions when you want to create something quick and simple, and for a low budget.

If you do choose to produce your own web video content, here are a few simple tips that will help you to achieve more professional looking results:

1. Pay attention to lighting

Ensure that you make the most of the available lighting in the room. This may mean making sure that all of the lights in the room are switched on. If the room in which you are filming has large windows, try to sit facing the window. Avoid sitting behind a bright light source: if your camera is set to auto exposure you will appear very dark in the frame.

2. Frame the presenter correctly

A common mistake is to frame the presenter with too much head room. As a rule of thumb, ensure that the eyes of the presenter are about two thirds of the way up the frame. If you have too much dead space above the head of the presenter it looks poorly composed, and psychologically diminishes the perceived authority of the presenter.

3. Bring the microphone as close to the sound source as possible

A common mistake is to record sound through the on-camera microphone, and for the presenter to stand far from the camera. This will result in poor quality sound. Move the presenter closer to the camera if you are recording sound through the on-camera microphone. Even better – use a lapel microphone that plugs into the camera and clips onto your shirt. This will dramatically improve the sound quality. Reducing background noise by filming in a quiet spot, turning off electrical equipment, or closing windows may also reduce ambient noise.

4. Be natural

Speak naturally, conversationally, and from the heart – just as if you would if you were sitting with a client. Avoid the temptation to copy the inflection and mannerisms of TV presenters – it will come across as contrived. You will be more engaging if you are authentic.

Further Reading – If you are going to be interviewed on camera, check out these 7 tips on being interviewed.


 Ryan Spanger


Ryan Spanger is one of Melbourne’s most respected and sought-after video production professionals. Ryan founded Dream Engine in 2001, and specializes in helping medium to large corporates, government departments, and the non-profit sector to connect with their audience by using video.

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