The August Luncheon at Rothchild Catering and Conference Center served as the first meeting of the 2019-2020 board term. Jessica Gutman, the new board president, welcomed everyone to the luncheon and introduced Jenny Woodbery, Digital Media Specialist – Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
Woodbery graduated from the University of Tennessee in 2009 with a double major in journalism and political science. She worked as an intern at Knox News Sentinel during college before eventually being hired on to the editorial staff. It was here that she began working on her knowledge of video. She had to learn how to make a video that was unique from the article accompanying it, a skill that is now an integral part of her career.
After working at the Knox News Sentinel, Woodbery went on to manage communications at both the Min H. Koa Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science – UTK, as well as the Knoxville Chamber. She eventually began working at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in 2015.
Musts of Short Videos
During her presentation, Woodbery touches on the musts of using short videos to complement existing communications strategies. A few easy ways that she does this in her every day work is by creating short videos that will typically accompany press
releases and featured stories. With such a technical subject matter and a science-based audience, these videos are an excellent way for the public to engage with ORNL’s stories. She also incorporates these videos on the website and social media channels. These have been picked up by national and even global news outlets in the past.
After covering how to integrate videos with current communications plan, Woodbery begins discussing what types of videos have worked for her. She most often uses videos of “talking heads” in the ORNL community. These often consist of an interview and b-roll (or supplemental footage) cut together into a short, informative video. She suggests not scripting these interviews, but let the interviewee speak naturally.
The second type of video that Woodbery covers is the text-heavy explainer video. It should typically stay under a minute and third seconds long, and display text over a mixture of photos and videos. These videos are great for social sharing, since the text captions mean that the video can be watched and understood without sound.
Lastly, Woodbery covers the videos that she calls “just for fun.” With these, she takes inspiration from what she consumes on social. While these videos can be “just for fun,” it is important for them to have a meaningful impact and tie back to the overall mission. She started a #SoothingScience series on ORNL’s social channels, which have been wildly successful.
Shooting and Posting Video
When beginning to shoot and create videos, Woodbery has a few suggestions. The first of which is – make sure the story merits a video. Are there good visuals? When it comes to shooting the video, she suggests experimenting with angles, get plenty of b-roll shots, and never be afraid to ask someone to do that again. She even suggests that “people get better the more takes they do.” For posting videos, Woodbery’s first rule is to always post natively from your own social media account to reap all of the benefits. For social media and websites, skip the video introductions. This is a great way to lose viewer retention. Lastly, be mindful of the length of your video. Each social media platform has a preferred length for videos, anywhere between 1 to 3 minutes.
Before wrapping up her presentation, Woodbery quickly covers the tools that she uses to master her video communications. She stresses that these items do not have to be expensive. Editing software is obviously an important video tool and she uses Final Cut Pro for all of her own videos, but Adobe Premier is another option. Woodbery suggests investing in equipment, such as tripods and microphones, to help get better quality video. Lastly, she suggests utilizing exiting footage. She often reuses b-roll video, photos and stock music.
The American Marketing Association Knoxville will be back next month for the September Luncheon: Marketing from the Mountaintops, featuring Erica Moore. As the Marketing and Public Relations Manager for Anakeesta, she will cover how to stay relevant in a competitive environment while planning for future growth.
Photos courtesy of Colby’s Photography