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Concept to Script to Shoot: Producing Corporate Identity Videos, Part 2

To storyboard or not to storyboard? Should the story drive the interviews or vice versa? At what point in a corporate project do you set video length and budget? These questions and more are discussed in Part 2 of our Producing Corporate Identity Videos series.

Run-and-Gun Storyboarding

Keith KellyIn business since the 1990s, Keith Kelly of Innovative Communications considers himself capable of storyboarding in his head, often in run-and-gun shooting situations. "I generally don't do storyboards, but I think very visually. I've gotten good at quickly visualizing what I need."

A client, for example, might fly him to their factory and give him 10 minutes to get the shot he needs. "They will shut down a line, and you've got to be quick-thinking, storyboarding in your head, on your feet," he explains.

A producer wearing many hats, Kelly does all his own script writing, among other tasks. "I have them give me an outline of what they want to talk about."

He provides clients with specific topics and suggested language to help them get a handle on "what some of the difference makers are," based on their previous meeting in which they ironed out budget, which of three options they would like to pursue, and how they see their company in their own words.

As a former actor, in addition to writing the script, Kelly also often voices the narration, as in this video he produced for Visual Academics, a program that teaches math to autistic and other learning-disabled individuals. By being a part of the entire process, he feels he understands clients intimately, and hopes they come to think of him as resource, a long-term partner, not just a guy with a camera and light kit.

"I produced this video for an educational publishing contest. The client needed a video for a third part of a submission for this contest. It was open to anyone with great ideas for educational products. There were a couple of challenges for the video--it had to meet the short time requirements, it could not just be a verbatim restating of the written portions of her submission (spelling out the problem and the solution), and it also had to grab the audience as the winner was being voted for online. She was one of the winners, and got to present her program to a distinguished panel of venture capital people, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and others. The audience was made up of the most powerful educational publishers in the country. I also designed Sheryl's presentation-wrote it, came up with a clean, simple, visual PowerPoint, and added a little more video. After her presentation, she had publishers waiting in line to speak with her-some of the same publishers that would previous not even return phone calls."

Next week, in this article's final installment, we'll hear about working with both paid and nonprofessional talent, and wrap up with a discussion of the editing process.

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