Technology continues to transform the staging of events. With increased expectations of shareable content online and via social media, event planners have more ways than ever of reaching larger and larger audiences. Videographer Jamie Huckle, from WaveFX, experts in all aspects of video production including filming, editing and animation, takes a look at how the landscape has changed – and explains how event planners can stay ahead of the curve.
- How long have you been recording events and how have things evolved over that time?
We’ve been filming events for nearly 15 years, but only in the last five has anyone been actually watching.Events filmed back in the day were either for the company archive or edited into DVDs and distributed to the staff who couldn’t attend.
What’s changed is the ability to webcast and share videos easily on any device, anywhere and at any time. Throw in the fact people can comment, share and interact in real-time and the world of live events is vastly different from the DVD no one watched – but said they did.
- Can you suggest some ways to film an event creatively on a small budget?
Create a highlights video of 60 to 90 seconds, asking five killer questions to delegates and key stakeholders:
- What are we doing here today?
- Why is today so important?
- What three things or one key message will you take away?
- What does the future look like?
- Would you recommend this event to friend or colleague?
- Are there any rules about how much to budget for editing and so on?
Editing a five-day event with multiple cameras, break out rooms, PowerPoint graphics and so on can cost a fortune and is incredibly labour intensive. Wherever possible we try and edit on-site as if we were broadcasting on the web, this way the client can have the finished video instantly and at a lower cost.
- What should organisers think about when writing a brief for a film company and what golden rules do event organisers need to follow to get the most out of a video company for an event?
Consider just three things: why are we making this video, who is going to watch it and what do we want them to do once they’ve seen it?
- How can filming enhance an event?
Filming gives any event longevity; the presentations can be watched again post-event, then shared, edited and enhanced for learning, promotion and sales.
- What are the hardest events to film and why?
Workshops. They need multiple cameras and microphones just to capture what’s happening and because it’s a workshop the pace is incredibly slow with long periods of group thinking time.
- What are the benefits of outsourcing filming for event organisers?
You always have to think about the online viewer. If they’re not engaged within the first 10 seconds you’ve lost them.A professional video company will work hard to make something out of nothing, either through multiple cameras, picture in picture graphics or scrolling Twitter feeds – anything other than a static camera pointing at the lectern!
- Have you been using Facebook and Instagram Live – do you see this being used more in events? If so why?
More than 70% of what we do is to Facebook Live. We’re administrators on over 50 corporate Facebook pages including William Hill, Motor Neurone Disease Association and Disney Studios. Facebook above all other social media platforms is the natural platform to share, interact and attract a large audience. Our biggest audience so far was a live NBL announcement to more than two million viewers.
- What do event organisers tend to forget in a brief?
The importance of honest interaction and engagement. Viewers would much rather watch a 60-second vox pop video, where different attendees summarise the event to camera, than 10 minutes of the CEO dictating the company values and key messages via a scripted messages.
- What's the optimum length of footage for sharing on social media?
As short as possible, ideally 60-90 seconds. If you’ve got more to say, cut it right back or create another video.
- How do you see Virtual Reality (VR) being used for events?
360° VR live streaming offers the online viewer the very best seat in the house, creating an engaging and interactive experience with or without a VR headset. This great new technology puts the viewer in the director chair, and it really does work.
Imagine being at a conference or meeting and being able to choose where you look, for example:
- The presenter at the lectern
- The presentation graphics on the screen
- Someone in the audience asking question
- One of the panel replying
Viewing a 360 degree event requires no extra software or hardware; you simply open your favourite browser and watch the webcast as normal. You also have the option to fully submerse yourself in the event by wearing a VR headset.
- Where is your favourite place/venue to film in Cambridge and surrounds and why?
The Møller Centre is hands down my favourite place to film in Cambridge; it has fantastic facilities and the best glass tower bar in town!