Have you ever watched a recording of one of your public meetings? The whole video from start to finish? Was it engaging? Was it easy to hear all of the speakers? If not, did your footage include captions? Was it well-lit? Most importantly, did it hold your attention, or did you find yourself scrolling through your Facebook feed on your phone instead of watching the broadcast?
Your interest in your public meeting videos is not dissimilar to that of your citizens, and if you find the content unengaging, they likely will too. While you can’t necessarily impact the topics on the agenda, you can affect the quality of the video, and you should since quality has just as much to do with making your videos engaging as the content itself. If you’ve identified a need to improve the production value of your public meeting videos, you don’t need to hire a professional videographer. Just follow these five tips.
1. Work with your IT Department to Ensure Ample Broadcast Bandwidth
To produce quality live video engagement experiences, you may need to work with your IT department to increase your streaming bandwidth capabilities. Even if you shoot high definition video, without the necessary bandwidth to broadcast it, viewers will suffer through choppy, fuzzy, or repeatedly stalling video, making them more likely to turn off the broadcast.
2. Consider Lighting
You may not have much control over the room in which your public meeting takes place, but do your best to ensure ample lighting, that the speaker is not backlit, that presenters are close to microphones, and that the camera is on a stable surface and not being held by someone who will inevitably suffer wrist fatigue.
3. Sound (and Caption) Check
Ensure your audio feeds directly into your camera for the highest possible sound quality, but also ensure you offer closed captioning services. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) identifies closed captioning of video content as a best practice for providing equitable content. Make sure you choose a media solution that enables closed captioning services of recorded video to make it easier for individuals with hearing impairments to comprehend vital discussions.
4. Ensure Video is Optimized for Viewing on Any Device
Today’s citizens are engaging digital content on the widest variety of devices, form factors, platforms, and screen sizes we have ever known. Make sure you choose a media solution that is mobile optimized so that citizens can watch proceedings anytime from any Apple® or AndroidTM device.
5. Choose a Software with Built-in Bookmarking Capabilities
Make it easy for viewers to expedite the review of meeting components of interest by choosing a media solution that allows you to bookmark specific meeting segments—without the need for technical video editing or post-production aftereffects knowledge.
Your digitally minded, time-constrained citizens want easy ways to consume content and learn about relevant topics and initiatives in the place they call home. By leveraging the latest technologies, you provide your tax-paying voters with access to local leaders and the information that they need. Remember, more informed citizens mean more involved voters, happier residents, and a more engaged citizenry.