Video product test setup (what is needed?)

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We had a good discussion about Spencer Hawes and his SEO based niche site system here.
I mentioned in that thread, that I want to move towards video reviews as well. Am I mistaken in thinking we don't really have anything about that in the Digital Crash Course?
Here are some topics on setup up a video review system:
  1. Location, in your own living room/basement or get a room setup specifically for it?
  2. Video equipment, which video and sound equipment?
  3. Background and lightning, how do you set up lightning and what kind of background is best?
  4. Getting the products, buy them, ask for sample product? Resale value to Purchase value running cost?
  5. Reviewers, do all reviews yourself or hire models?
  6. Speak, live in front of camera or added later, do yourself or hire voiceover?
  7. Publishing and editing, do it yourself or hire someone?
 
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Is your niche a 'sexy' visual topic? That is, do the items do 'visual things' (e.g. BBQ grills) or do you use them for 'visual stuff' (e.g. surfwear)? Or is there an angle that you can insert yourself into good visuals?
 
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Is your niche a 'sexy' visual topic? That is, do the items do 'visual things' (e.g. BBQ grills) or do you use them for 'visual stuff' (e.g. surfwear)? Or is there an angle that you can insert yourself into good visuals?
I'm in different niches, but here I am mostly thinking about fitness equipment. I'm thinking that it would be fairly easy to find some younger fitness bloggers/insta types and pay them to test the equipment and film them?
 
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  1. Background and lightning, how do you set up lightning and what kind of background is best?
I don't have experience with video reviews, but I have done some product photography. Lighting is really the key. You don't need to best technical setup, as long as you can get the lighting right. This video gives a good introduction and examples.
 
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I'm in different niches, but here I am mostly thinking about fitness equipment. I'm thinking that it would be fairly easy to find some younger fitness bloggers/insta types and pay them to test the equipment and film them?
Well, in that case, it's definitely worth finding fitness bloggers and doing 'proper videos'...

(The reason I was asking is a lot of people try doing time-consuming 'boring videos' on subjects with no visual or content impact, where you could just as easily use an online video creator and do Ken Burns pans and fades with decent product images and your bullet point niche review.)
 
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Well, in that case, it's definitely worth finding fitness bloggers and doing 'proper videos'...

(The reason I was asking is a lot of people try doing time-consuming 'boring videos' on subjects with no visual or content impact, where you could just as easily use an online video creator and do Ken Burns pans and fades with decent product images and your bullet point niche review.)
Please elaborate on this. I'm going to google both, but maybe you have more to share?
 
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Sure.

There are a number of online video creators mostly producing stuff for usage on FB, Instagram,Youtube, etc. You pick a template and then either add your stuff manually (as you would with video software like Premiere) or start with a template and then let the service analyse page text and pick out suitable text bullet points and video and/or images (free or with additional cost like Getty). You can then edit that afterwards if the AI hasn't worked as you want.

Some of the online services also add longer videos, background music, text-to-speech, intro outro, etc. included or at various price points.

If you are interested, take a look at Animoto, Lumen5, Wave and InVideo (I started with this one as it was on a - still-running - AppSumo deal).

Ken Burns pans are the technique used when you see a photo gallery, for example, and it appears that the viewer is zooming in or out or panning across (or both) a static image. (Usually using javascript and/or css on a web page.) With that technique, animated text and fades between 'scenes' you can make a quite impressive short video from static images and, for example, a bullet point list. ('Five Reasons To Buy A .......')
 
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  • Video equipment, which video and sound equipment?
Not sure what the best set up for this is these days. But just remember that the sound quality is soo important! And also that a nice trick is to use 2 or 3 cameras running at the same time to get them sweet multiple angle shots (some close ups of the equipment).
  • Getting the products, buy them, ask for sample product? Resale value to Purchase value running cost?
Maybe get in touch with the manufacturers/retailers first and say you will do a product review. Get in touch afterwards and send them the video and let them know you
  • Reviewers, do all reviews yourself or hire models?
I would suggest doing a mix, but over time it would be good probably if you could ease your way in to making your own videos. I think a strong site over time will come down to having a strong and recognisable brand. And you will get better at it as you keep on going.
  • Speak, live in front of camera or added later, do yourself or hire voiceover?
Also possible to do a mix here. Try a few different scenarios out while you work out your structure and find the format that works best for you.
  • Publishing and editing, do it yourself or hire someone?
What is your experience to date of editing videos? I would try it myself first and then also hire someone for a one-off video to see what works the best.

At my first marketing job I got put in charge of creating a new Corporate video for our small e-commerce business. Basically in the old one our CEO was being interviewed on the porch and magpies in the tree around her ruined the sound quality of that video. I filmed with our office iPad and cut the video myself in iMovie on my Mac. However, it took A LONG time and probably ate up time I could have spent on marketing the business, so in hindsight I would have hired someone like a media student to do that.

If there is a university or college nearby where you live, they might have a video production society or film making society. Worth a look!

Good luck with the videos :smile: I am thinking of getting into this video making thing as well for my product reviews and will keep checking back in this thread to see what other tips are coming in.
 
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Ken Burns pans are the technique used when you see a photo gallery, for example, and it appears that the viewer is zooming in or out or panning across (or both) a static image. (Usually using javascript and/or css on a web page.) With that technique, animated text and fades between 'scenes' you can make a quite impressive short video from static images and, for example, a bullet point list. ('Five Reasons To Buy A .......')
I think I know what you're talking about, and I've seen a couple of videos like that on Youtube going for extremely low competition keywords. They all looked bad, though, and were far from impressive. Do you have an example of this being done well?
 
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