Do You Need a Script For That?

When we meet with a new client to discuss a project, it’s often asked, “Who writes the script?”. That’s a good question, but it’s putting the cart before the horse. Really, the question to ask is, is a script necessary?

At Good Fruit, we’re all about authenticity. Allowing real people to use their own words, to tell the story. We then remove the stumbles and long pauses during the editing phase, making the final story smooth and seamless. We’ve successfully produced thousands of videos this way over the past decade, all with different uses and goals. However, there are a handful of times that scripting is necessary.

1. How To videos. How To videos, like the ones we produce for Melling Engine Parts, require specific words and exact terms to be used, making a script important to make sure you get it right.

2. Animation videos. If a video is going to be animated like this one we did for CPAN, it will require voice over. I have yet to meet a voice over artists that does not require a script to read from. Looking for a good voice over artist? Looking for a voice over artist? We recommend using Speedy Spots.

3. TV Commercials. TV commercials like this one we did for MSU Libraries, have to be an exact length. A script is usually needed in order to make sure you stay within the allotted time.

There are a few other times when someone may decide to go with a script for all or some of a video, such as with a historical video. However, the three types above are the three types of videos that require scripting.

Other times, people feel more comfortable with a simple outline with a list of pre-chosen questions or topics for them to review and think about before the interview. That’s fine too.

Ultimately, it comes down to what your goals are and what you’re most comfortable with. If you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to give us a shout. Thanks!

Are Your Videos Fully Inclusive?

Picture of the Good Fruit Video's vehicles

Are Your Videos Fully Inclusive?

There’s a big difference between having a video and having a video that’s fully inclusive. In the United States, 3% of all citizens are legally blind, 4% of citizens are deaf or hard of hearing and, though there is no concrete number, it’s estimated that a minimum of 5% of US citizens cannot read due to dyslexia or a learning disability. If your video is not fully inclusive, you could be missing out on reaching 12% of your potential customers, clients, supporters, volunteers, champions and fans. So, what are three questions you should ask yourself before making your next video?

1. If Someone Can’t See My Video, Do They Know What’s Happening?

A trend in instructional videos today are well shot videos with only a music bed and text to supplement the video. However, if a person cannot see it, will the video be useful to them? Consider providing some sort of audio description in your video. There’s a spectrum when it comes to audio description. Most people can get the gist of the video with simply the spoken word of interviewees or a narrator speaking generally about the topic. However, sometimes it may be important to describe everything happening in the video in detail for someone to really understand what’s going on (especially for those trendy instructional videos). If you think it takes away from the overall artistic vibe of the piece, consider creating a second, accessible version.

2. If Someone Can’t Hear My Video, Do They Still Understand the Content?

Adding captioning to videos should be something always on your radar. Depending on where you host your video, it can be pretty easy to do as well. For instance, Youtube will auto generate captions for you. However, always review the captions for accuracy before publishing. On occasion, auto generated captioning can even include offensive words. Also, if you are going to present the video to a group outside of the world wide web, make sure that the video is subtitled or has the captioning burned into it, so anyone that needs it, can read the spoken words of your video.

3. If Someone Can’t Read the Text on My Video, Are They Missing the Point?

Text in a video can really help drive certain points home. It can also be helpful overall for viewers to really absorb the content. However, if there are certain things that are simply written and not spoken, those with vision loss and those with cognitive or learning disabilities may not pick up on the information you are trying to relay. Consider adding a detailed description and/or Alt-Text to the video that can be read by a screen reader.

Now you know what to think about before making your next video. But what about the videos you’ve already produced? We suggest doing a simple audit of your old videos. You can download a free video audit sheet to use here (nothing is there yet. I’m working on it.). Note… Make sure you’re reviewing all your videos, including ones that may only be on social media or on your website. If you find they’re lacking in accessibility, don’t fret. There are usually ways to add captions, alt-text and video descriptions to videos, no matter where they are hosted. If your video does not include any audio description, consider explaining the video in the description.

Don’t have time to do an audit yourself or would like assistance, Good Fruit Video is happy to help. Just give us a shout(contact form)!

I hope this information will help you with your video projects past, present and future.  Not only will asking yourself these questions help you be more inclusive to individuals with disabilities, but it will help your videos be more accessible for everyone. It’s a win/win!

If you have additional questions or comments, feel free to reach out to me at anytime at justin@goodfruitvideo.com. Thanks!