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How To Make How to Videos for the Web

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You can make how to videos to show off your skills, explain a product, or promote your business. If you have basic videography and editing equipment, it's not too difficult to make how to videos.
Difficulty: Average
Time Required: Depends

Here's How:

  1. What will you make how to videos about? The first thing you'll need to do, before you start to make how to videos, is to plan them out. What's the topic, who's the star, what props will you need? You don't necessarily need to script the entire video, but it will help if you have a basic outline and know what points you'll emphasize before you start to make how to videos.

  2. Where will you make how to videos? You'll need to find a good location to make how to videos. Pick a quiet spot with good lighting (or plenty of space to set up extra video lights) and a nice background. If you want to make how to videos about cooking, find a nice kitchen set up. If you're going make how to videos for your business, you might want to make sure your logo is visible in the background.

  3. Do you have the right equipment to make how to videos? Under the right circumstances, you can make how to videos that look great with nothing more than a Flip camcorder. However, to make professional looking how to videos you'll want, in addition to a camcorder, a lapel microphone for the video star to wear, a tripod to hold the camera steady and video lights.

  4. Videotape the how to presentation. When I make how to videos I always make sure to get plenty of different takes and angles. Usually I'll tape one run through of the demonstration as a wide shot, so I can see the subject talking and see what they're doing. Then, I ask them to give the presentation again, and this time I get lots of close ups. I'm also sure to get individual shots of all the products and materials used in the how to demonstration.

  5. Edit the how to video. If you did a good job shooting the how to video, editing should be a snap! When I edit how to videos, I start by listening to the audio. I cut out any mistakes or anything extraneous and put the remaining sound bites together to get the audio portion of the how to video. Once the audio is done, I add the close up shots to the video in places where I need them, either to cover up a cut or to provide a good visual explanation. Lastly, I add title graphics where necessary and music to enhance the video.

    Video editing tutorials

  6. Publish your how to videos. Once you've finished making the how to videos, you can share them online. There are many how to video websites that accept user submissions. You can upload to other video sharing sites like YouTube, or put the videos on your own web site.

Tips:

  1. Keep it simple. Don't try to put too much information into your how to video. If it's going to run more than three minutes, try breaking the topic up into multiple how to videos.
  2. Keep it clear. With online how to videos, it's very important for your viewers to see what you're doing clearly. Make sure that you have plenty of light for the video, keep your scene in focus, and get plenty of close ups that show what's going on.

What You Need

  • Camcorder
  • Tripod
  • Lapel microphone
  • Video lights
  • Video editing software
  • High speed internet connection
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