The Production Behind Video Production

Posted February 10, 2017 by swimcreative

Moving from Idea to Screen.

Just like the perfect Instagram, the perfect video doesn’t just happen. It’s a culmination of hours of concepting, planning and editing. Every detail must be mulled over. Every angle must be thought through. It’s amazing how one 30-second video has hours and hours of work behind it.

So how do you go from idea to screen? Here, in a nutshell, are the vital steps of a well-executed video project.

  • Creative Brief
  • Brainstorm Concepts
  • Present Concepts
    • Get Client Feedback
  • Write Script
  • Pre-Pro Meeting
    • Locations
    • Talent
    • Props
    • Dates and Times
    • Shoot Coordination
  • Storyboard / Shot List
  • Schedule for the Day
  • Shoot
  • Source Music
  • Record Voiceover
  • Graphics
  • Editing
  • Showtime

Let’s break that down further, shall we?

The Brief

The client has a goal. This brief is a document that breaks it down by strategy, target market, media buy and competitors.


The creatives devour the brief and brainstorm ideas. The best ideas head to presentation land with a concise write-up and a snazzy mood board.

Present Concepts

We bring several concepts to the client and let them choose their favorite. We may even do some tweaking based on client feedback or concerns.


Our copywriter transforms the idea into a story. Upon creative director approval, the script gets sent to client for approval.


Client loves the script! Time to prep. This includes finding talent and any additional crewmembers, scouting out locations, scheduling shooting dates, figuring out lighting, planning out and purchasing wardrobe and props. Sometimes that means eBaying a yeti costume.

Storyboard & Shot List

Time to pin down how this script will play out on camera. Copywriter and art director go through it line by line and scene by scene, cranking out what’s happening and from what angle(s).

Schedule for the Day

We know what shots we need to get, but when’s the optimal time to get them? Do we save the opening shot for evening because we don’t need the sunlight? What will the actors eat? (Having enough food can make or break a shoot. Trust us on this one.)


The day is here! Despite all your planning, this day will feel like herding drunk sloths. Just be ready to improvise if something doesn’t work out. Sometimes, the best shots you can’t plan for.


Music Selection

Music can add feelings to even the simplest scene. We carefully choose music that will heighten our story and the reaction we’re after.

Voiceover Recording

Time to record any voiceovers featured in the video. First, our creatives peruse the talent, listening to different actors read the script. Once a voice talent is chosen, we have them record. Working together, we nail down the perfect read.


If needed, our designers create graphics for the video.


Our vision starts to take form. Second by second, shot by shot, our video editor takes hours of footage and wraps into one 30-second video. Here’s when music, voiceover and graphics take their places.


The internal reviews are complete. The work has been refined over and over. Now, it’s time to show the completed video to your client. With their approval, it’s time for the video to hit the big screen, or more likely, many, many, many little screens. P.S. Make sure your film plays well on mobile and has captions for Facebook.

Now that you know all our secrets, it’s time to see the results.

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