From the conference: How to make compelling sports videos

Thomas Johnson’s presentation handout from the 2017 APSE Summer Convention

How to make compelling sports videos

Pick the right topic

  • Before starting, think about the visuals. What kind of b-roll is available?
  • What is the shelf-life of the topic?
  • Try to minimize talking heads on screen.
  • Don’t be scared to experiment and be humorous.
  • Strong personalities and characters are key.
  • Viewers can find highlights anywhere. What can you do to set yourself apart?

Coordinate the coverage

  • Work with print reporters/editor to coordinate interviews.
  • Is the video a complementary element or standalone package?
    • If complementary:
      • It doesn’t have to tell the whole story.
      • Can instead focus on most visual portion of larger story.

Shooting tips

  • Make sure subjects answer questions in complete sentences.
  • Ask them to restate the question in the answer.
  • Use two cameras so there is a wide shot and a tight shot to cut between answers.

Start strong

  • The first few seconds of a video are key. Engagement drops off quickly.
  • Grab the viewer’s attention immediately.
  • Strong, short quotes work well, especially when paired with larger text on screen.
  • Aim for a faster pace, using quick cuts of varied b-roll.

Shorter is (generally) better

  • Good rule of thumb: Aim for two minutes or under.
  • Does it need to be longer?
  • The longer the video, the more varied b-roll is needed.

Social videos

  • Most people watch social videos on phones.
  • On Facebook and Instagram, most videos are muted.
    • Can the video work without sound? It should.

Video Examples

Just like Steph: Fans imitate the MVP’s mouthguard munching at the free throw line: https://www.facebook.com/BayAreaNewsGroup.Golden.State.Warriors/videos/1160142850706548/

Dry-erase fun: http://www.coloradoan.com/videos/sports/csu/football/2015/05/13/27266341/

GoPro fun: https://www.facebook.com/ColoradoanSports/videos/1259537067407322/

Shea Patterson helmet cam: http://usatodayhss.com/2015/video-calvary-baptist-la-qb-shea-patterson-wears-helmet-cam-at-7-on-7

NBA free agency in 90 seconds http://wapo.st/29xdLEH

The Return: Kevin Durant to OKC (promo) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GuJNHtzOMZc

Beer man dreams of Beltway World Series

https://www.washingtonpost.com/posttv/local/beer-man-dreams-of-beltway-world-series/2014/09/28/2240ef2c-470e-11e4-a4bf-794ab74e90f0_video.html

Redskins’ Josh Norman returns home to host his fourth ‘Fun Day in the Park’ http://wapo.st/29QQcTe

Posing, dancing and unusual questions: Inside Wizards media day

http://wapo.st/2dpuF9Z

Amari Cooper’s NFL journey began at The Barnyard

http://newsvideo.mercurynews.com/Amari-Coopers-NFL-journey-began-at-The-Barnyard-31569348

The dynasty begins: Warriors win 2017 NBA Finals:

http://newsvideo.mercurynews.com/The-dynasty-begins-Warriors-win-2017-NBA-Finals-32545531

 

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