Tips for Shooting Personalised Videos

As mentioned in a previous post, as well as Princess parties and Meet & Greets, I also do personalised videos. These can range from birthday messages to more general things like encouraging good behaviour. Below you’ll find my tips for successfully recording your own messages.

Research
Pretty simple but always make sure you have all the relevant information from the parent before you start. You’ll want as much material as possible so as well as asking for standard things like name, age and whether they have any pets, also ask the parents for some personal things like favourite food or what they have been up to in school. Finally, always ask the parent whether they have anything in particular they want you to say or mention.

Diversify
Following on from the above, make sure you don’t follow a cookie-cutter, change the name video for your videos. Parents are likely to share the video around and if all your videos look and sound the same, it can be seen as not caring. It’s also important to remember that potential customers may see these videos and variety will keep them interested!

Script
Personally, I don’t like writing a script as I don’t like the affect it has on my performance but that isn’t to say you won’t find them useful. Writing a script can help you to cover everything you need to say and usually result in less bloopers. I tend to write down bullet points of the things I want to cover, and then use that to create a conversation.

Background
If you are recording at home, make sure the background is suitable. If you want to avoid the whole white wall look, hang a curtain or sheet behind you to create a softer, less harsh feel. Alternatively, find a location that suits your character, so a bookcase for Belle or the garden for Tinkerbell, but make sure you’ll be uninterrupted and the sound quality is good before starting!

Technical Equipment
Before starting, you’ll need to consider whether the recording equipment, lighting and editing software you have is up to scratch. If you are offering singing as part of the message, you’ll want to invest in a decent microphone and professional lighting can make a lot of difference to the end look of your video so is also worth considering. Have a look at online tutorials to make your recordings look and sound more professional.

Editing
Although I have good experience with editing videos I actually tend to shoot my Princess videos in one take, to negate the need for editing. As I mentioned above, I prefer a more natural conversational tone and I feel editing takes this away. It does however, mean I have a lot of outtakes! If you are offering multiple segments or uncomfortable with a one-take shot, have a look at online tutorials for the best way to edit your videos.

Practice
It’s a well known saying but practice really does make perfect. The more you practice, the better and more authentic your performance will feel, and you’ll probably end up with less outtakes! I recommend filming your rehearsals and watching them back so you know what to improve on in future.

I hope these tips help anyone interesting in recording Princess messages. If you have any questions or advice, please leave a comment below.

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