If you’ve been considering starting a video marketing campaign but tasks like video production and editing have you overwhelmed, this article will outline all you need to know about shooting professional quality videos for less than $500.
When it comes to creating great looking videos that help you stand out and look professional, it doesn't really require a massive budget of thousands to even hundreds of thousands of dollars that were required 15 to 20 plus years ago.
Nowadays, we have the tools easily accessible just with a few clicks of a button to buy from Amazon, or some other site to get to your house to get to your office to create great looking videos. So when it comes to creating videos that look more professional, and that you're proud of, it doesn't require much of an investment.
There are several different ways you can create great looking videos without needing much money at all.
The first thing we want to talk about is the camera itself because this is probably one of the most important things when it comes down to creating a professional looking video.
You want something that has a good quality sensor, which means it's going to capture images and video better than ones that don't have as good quality sensors in them.
Also, something that shoots in 1080p or higher resolution is going to look higher quality.
You can just use the camera you have already purchased, which is usually your phone, iPhone, Android, whatever. Most of these cameras look so good.
And a lot of our clients get started there when they are trying to grow their YouTube channel or on other platforms where we help support them and they DIY the filming themselves, they use their phone. So because you've already invested this, this can be a $0 price tag. As far as investment goes.
That said, if you're serious about growing your business or making videos professionally, then it makes sense to invest in something a little more robust than what comes standard on your smartphone.
For example: DSLRs (digital single-lens reflex) cameras are great for shooting high-quality video for less than $500—and many come with built-in microphones as well!
If you're looking for something more portable that will shoot 4K video without weighing down your bag too much (and still give you excellent sound quality), then look into mirrorless cameras like Sony's A7 series—they start at around $400!
Next, make sure you have some form of a tripod to hold up that camera, whether it's a phone or a more professional or non phone camera.
Tripods can range from like $10 to hundreds of dollars depending on how high tech you want to go. But I recommend the cheaper ones to get started.
And if you're filming with a phone, oftentimes, you can get a tripod and with a phone attachment that you can just simply fit your phone into and get recording whether it's horizontal or vertical.
Audio & Microphones
So with that tripod and with a camera attached, then it's time to invest in what I believe is the most important part of video creation and that is a quality microphone for your audio. People are more forgiving of a poor quality video versus a poor audio quality.
So I recommend setting apart a bigger budget, probably your biggest budget for a quality microphone.
There's two main types of microphones: dynamic mics and condenser mics. Dynamic mics are typically used for podcasting because they're more affordable and easier to use, but condensers give you better sound quality.
A lot of people ask me what kind of microphone am I using? And it's just an inexpensive dynamic mic called the Rode Podcaster which only costs about $60 on Amazon!
The next thing you need is video lighting.
You could go super cheap and just get some table lamps or desk lamps or whatever you have around the house.
But if you want something that's gonna be good quality and last a long time then I recommend investing in lighting kits which usually come with three lights and they have stands included so they're collapsible and easy to store away when not in use.
The first place to look is Amazon. Type in "video lighting" or "video soft boxes" and you'll find soft boxes for as low as $50! Soft boxes are a great starting point for getting a nice light on your subject. If you're not facing a window that provides free light, then you can use one of these softboxes to get the job done.
To use a softbox effectively, position it about 45 degrees above the camera on your subject—I recommend side lighting over directional lighting because this gives a little more personality and creativity by providing shadows on one side of the subject's face.
If you're not facing a window that offers free light, consider using a softbox placed about 45 degrees above the camera on you. This will allow you to get a nice soft light on your face while still keeping shadows off your cheekbones and jawline. This kind of lighting is great for beauty shots, but if you want something more creative and interesting (and less focused on just your face), consider placing the soft box at an angle so there's some shadow on one side of your face as well as in front of it.
Finally, there's software. When it comes to editing more professional looking videos, it's important to invest in more professional software as well.
The top software that I recommend is something like Final Cut Pro by Apple, which is exclusive to Apple computers. And that's only $300. Or Adobe Premiere Pro which is available on both Macs and PCs for less than $300 as well (you can also get access through a monthly subscription plan).
If you're looking for a great way to improve your videos, look no further than DaVinci Resolve. This software is free and easy to use, and it includes all the tools you need to edit your videos like a pro.
You can edit your videos using DaVinci Resolve in one of two ways: you can use the free version, which is limited but still useful, or invest in the starter version, which gives you more features at an affordable price.
Your Budget-Friendly Solution
The main question you need to ask yourself through this entire process is whether or not you actually need to invest in video production equipment for yourself, team or company.
Yes, it can be great to spend less than $500 on everything you need to get started.
But, do you want to invest the time and energy to do it yourself, or train a non-video team member to do video marketing for you. If you want to take the DIY path then enroll in our online courses.
Otherwise, partner with our expert video marketing team at Video Supply to do everything for you. Contact us today to get started.