Re: Professional how-to videos

Subject: Re: Professional how-to videos
From: "Peter Neilson" <neilson -at- windstream -dot- net>
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Date: Mon, 27 Jan 2014 08:20:56 -0500

On Mon, 27 Jan 2014 07:02:16 -0500, Erika Yanovich <ERIKA_y -at- rad -dot- com> wrote:

How can I make [videos] more polished beyond using professional voices and better graphics? What makes a video polished?

Unpolished: Talking head. Terrible diction. Screenshots. Explaining the already known.

Polished: Narration about what is being shown. Testing of preliminary and finished versions of video on representatives of target audience. Challenges the viewer, not to wade through confusion, but to think.

Unpolished: No script; reading from script without practicing beforehand. Vocalized pauses.

Unpolished example: "As you can see here, uhhh, this is the, the part of the screen that when you click over here" (WHERE? I DON'T SEE THAT!) "makes the glarggh interface appear. When you are there you, uhhh, well, it's a bit hard to explain, but uhhh, you uhhh sort of have to imagine that you already have the result you want and work backwards. Gee, I wish we had the second screen first. Anyway, okay, here, I'll click over to that one. CLICK CLICK CLICK, oops. Ahhh, there it is! Now you can see over in the corner the, uhhh, you have to squint a little, yeah, there it is, little red square. That's the frobulator." (WHICH CORNER? I CAN'T SEE IT!)

Polished example: "Here's how you use the frobulator. Remember, that's the special interface that turns glommitzes into frobules. We need frobules because they're crunchier. Down in the left corner of the main screen (ZOOMS IN) is the little red square that brings up the frobulator interface."

(Notice that we have forced engineering to eliminate the need to go through the glarggh interface to get to the frobulator screen.)
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Professional how-to videos: From: Erika Yanovich

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