A well-crafted video can emotionally engage your audience in ways that reading a brochure, a website page or a pamphlet can’t. For a moment, you step into the interviewees’ shoes and you feel what they are feeling. Think about the last movies you’ve seen — how they made you laugh or cry. Once a great video pulls at your heartstrings, they can inspire you to act. The perfect combination of storytelling, video and personal appeals can be more effective in influencing people to donate than any other marketing strategy.

Answering these questions can help you create a meaningful fundraising video:

1. Craft a compelling story. This is the single most important step in producing a fundraising video. How do you want to tell the story? You and your team will come up with the concept by analyzing your audience and developing a plan.

2. Length of the video. This will depend on your budget and how you will present your video. Is this a one-minute public service announcement? Or, is this a 3-minute video with interviews from people who will tell your story?

3. Who do you want to tell the story and from what perspective? Once you decide how long the video will be and who will be interviewed, you’ll have to set up times to do pre-interviews over the phone. What you’re trying to achieve is whether your interviewees will be comfortable to talk about their story and whether they’re capable of crafting sound-bites. Are they long-winded? Can they frame a concise and compelling answer? Pre-interviews also help your subjects have time to think about their answers. You might also want to think about voice over talent. If you decide to do this route, you’ll have to write a script. The downside of having a voice-over talent tell the story is that it could be less authentic.

4. Lighting sets the scene. This element is important because lighting sets the mood. Do you want dramatic lighting or natural outdoor lighting? It gives the audience an understanding of how to feel while watching. You’ll also want to think about location of the shoot(s). Filming interviewees where they are most comfortable is the best option. There are less likely to feel nervous and forget that they are being filmed.

5. Editing a masterpiece: Now, that you have the interviews and all the video shot, the post production process starts with your editor. You and your team will pick the best sound-bites to tell the story and corresponding video to match.

6. Music is the message. Picking the right music is essential to evoking a specific emotion from your audience. If you want them to feel happy, you’re going to pick uplifting music. Music will set the tone for your video and it will help you establish pacing and transitions in your video.

7. Create a call-to-action. Once the audience has seen the video, what do you want them to do? Follow a link? Share your video? Donate? Make sure you’re clear in your messaging.

These 7 steps should get you on your way to producing your own powerful and impactful fundraising video. Or, the Blu Sky Creative video team is ready to help you get started.

See an example of our most recent fundraising video, created by our award-winning team.