Today we want to feature a great article about producing great B-Roll Media for use in broadcast by Sheri Baer, Broadcast Director at The Hoffman Agency in San Jose.
If you’re sending out flashy marketing pieces with music, narration and fancy graphics, you’re wasting your money. What looks slick to the client is actually anathema to the media. Give broadcast reporters what they need – the content they would use if they had the opportunity to shoot it themselves.
What’s the Story?
Ask any VNR distributor what content plays best to a mass audience, and you’ll most likely hear, ‘health-related issues.’ There’s no mystery. A medical breakthrough can touch everyone. Most likely, a tech product will not. If your VNR is about a tech product then do the research and find out what will click with your audience. Here are some suggestions.
1. Be clear about what’s so newsworthy about your product
2. Find and tell a story about how your product helps people
3. Think of a catchy angle. (Remember the old story about good headlines: “Dog bites Man” is not nearly as interesting as “Man bites Dog!”)
Shoot Newsworthy Material:
Think simplicity, steady shots, natural sound. Get it done professionally, and get it done right. Good B-roll can and will secure airtime.”
1. Shoot steady screen shots
2. Get plenty of cutaways
3. Interview the company president and product developer
4. Interview customers who further your newsworthy story and not just give you a plug.
Editing and Packaging:
Editing the piece properly is one of the most important parts of the whole process. Putting it all together in a clear and easy to use format is worth its weight in gold.
1. Generate a clear script of titles and slates
2. Arrange the material so the best stuff is up front
3. Leave plenty of room at the head and tail of shots
4. Include ambient and natural sound
5. Include a suggested final edit sequence that news stations can use as is and just add their own local V.O.
Just because you produce a great B-Roll tape, doesn’t mean your job is finished. The last and perhaps most critical phase is to make sure it gets into the hands of the news directors. For this, hiring a professional agency is vital. The agency people often have the personal contacts in the business to help make sure your important story gets on the air. They are the important bridge to the networks and make a difference in winning or losing in the game of B-Roll production.
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