4 tips for a successful video shoot.

The concept is approved, the dates are booked, and you’re ready to head to the shoot. There is a lot of work that goes into a video shoot before cameras start rolling to ensure the shoot and the final videos turn out well. Our team recently headed to Kansas City for several days where we watched our ideas come to life right before our eyes. While we’ve done our share of video shoots, every time is a chance to learn something new. Along the way, our team identified a few key tips to having a great video shoot. They include:

Choosing a great partner.

“Video shoots have A LOT of moving parts, which leaves room for a lot to go wrong. Team up with a trusted partner who’s done it all before to be sure you don’t show up on set unprepared.” – Leanne Prewitt, Creative Director

Planning, planning and some more planning.

Working on a video project, especially one that involves shooting on location, requires an enormous amount of planning. Between logistics, script/concept approval, and the moving pieces between the agency, client team and production team, it’s critical that everyone has the information they need to show up and do their job well.

“The success of a video shoot all depends on the work put in before the shoot—things like location scouting, wardrobe, set design, lighting and timing. It’s all about thinking through the details and then having a backup plan for when things don’t work out like you imagined they would.” – Aaron Christensen, Associate Creative Director

Understand the vision.

Are certain colors of clothes off limits? Does a word need to be pronounced a certain way? Can the talent wear high heels or sandals? Knowing the ins and outs of the business and customer that your video will be reaching is very important. When planning for talent and the set, make sure to ask a lot of questions and really understand the output that the creative team and client are envisioning. It’s easier (and more cost-efficient) to change something on set than in postproduction.

“Speak up. If something’s bugging you about how the set looks in frame or how the talent is pronouncing a word, it’s probably still going to bug you in postproduction. Ask the question, get a safety take, and sleep well knowing you have it covered.” – Leanne Prewitt, Creative Director


Be flexible. You’ve selected a trusted partner. So if your director, agency or producer is asking to make a pivot or try something different, let them go for it. If it works, great! If not, at least you know.” – Leanne Prewitt, Creative Director

Video shoots take a lot of teamwork, planning and flexibility, but it’s important to remember to always have fun and enjoy the process. Some days will be longer than others. Just remember that the outcome is worth it, because video works!

Leanne Prewitt

President & Chief Executive Officer

Shaped by her background in creative direction, Leanne leads the agency’s culture and creative vision and also oversees the operations that allow a team of marketing, design and media specialists to create powerful and effective work for their client partners.

Leanne began her professional career in New York City working for some of the nation’s leading agencies. In 2016, after a five-month sabbatical around the world, she returned to her hometown and joined Ervin & Smith. Her global perspective and expanded professional experience influence the work she does today.