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The Reel Deal: A Checklist to Master On-Location Video Shoots

Video is essential to showing your brand’s authenticity while delivering key messages effectively to modern audiences. This article is the second chapter in Celtic’s “Reel Deal” series dedicated to helping marketers tell their brand stories through compelling video.

As real estate agents often say, the key to choosing your perfect home is “location, location, location!” The same rule also applies to shooting videos for your business or product. When customers see visuals of real people using your product in the field, it becomes easier for them to picture themselves doing the same. The right visuals captured during on-location video shoots help enhance your brand’s top of mind awareness among consumers.

On-location shooting requires a lot of coordination throughout the entirety of the production process. From storyboarding, location scouting, to time management, follow this checklist to ensure that your on-location video project stays on-track:

  1. Know your vision. It’s essential to have a clear, concise idea of what needs to be captured during production. Before you leave for an on-location video shoot, have a finalized storyboard that defines the audience, message, and goals of the video.

  2. Scout the location. Allocate time in the production schedule for walking around the location and finding shots that replicate the vision of the storyboard. While scouting and during filming it’s important to be as undisruptive as possible. This allows subjects to go about their daily routines so that when you start filming shots don’t look contrived or forced.

  3. Watch the clock. Always be conscious of your time, especially if you are moving between multiple locations. Once you have the specific shot and additional b-roll that you need, be sure to communicate with your crew so that you can move onto the next one and maximize the daylight.

  4. Prepare, prepare, prepare. There is no such thing as being too prepared. The key to this is to talk to as many people as you can before you arrive on-location. Be sure to ask questions like who to talk to, where to go, where not to go and any others that may apply to your on-location shoot. This ensures that subjects and production crew members have the same expectations before starting any filming.

To help client Central Life Sciences produce a promotional video for its line of horn fly control products, our Celtic team set out to create a relatable experience for the beef cattle ranchers we were targeting. The shoot called for very specific animals and settings, so Celtic carefully coordinated a multi-site shoot across three states with the client team. Watch below to see how the video came out, and check back on the Celtic blog for our next chapter in the “Reel Deal” series.


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