Nov 22nd 2011 9:27AMThe sixth installment in our How to Shoot A Business Profile video series offers some advanced interview techniques to help capture the best content from the primary speaker.
Because business profile videos are driven almost exclusively by the talking points of the customer, the interview is the most important piece of production for a compelling piece. Before the filmmaker even shows up onsite, StudioNow arranges and prepares the advertiser with relevant information for an efficient interview and shoot. But once the camera starts rolling, even the most prepared business owners can freeze up. To avoid this type of situation, we ask that you sit down with the customer first and take down their talking points into the preproduction checklist. This serves as a way to help them organize their ideas and set them at ease with you as a filmmaker. By the time the camera rolls, their talking points are fresh in their mind and 'continuing the conversation' on camera is a seamless transition. Here are the interview questions we provide as a starting place:
- What makes your business special?
- What is the history or background of this business?
- Why did you start the business?
- What are you best known for? Why?
- What makes this business different from other businesses like it?
- What about this business are you the most passionate?
- What notable awards have you won?
- If you were to tell a potential customer why they should come here, what would you say?
- What is a little known secret about this business that customers wouldn't know?
- Are there any tips that you could tell customers that would improve their experience when they visit?
Feel free to use those and tweak accordingly. The one factor that setsexpert
interviewers apart from someone mindlessly-asking-routine-questions is the ability to make the intervieweefeel
like they are participating in a discussion instead of being quizzed or interrogated. But, your job is to be silent so as not to interrupt the recorded audio - so how is this possible?
Two things. Before asking the questions, repeat back over their answers - unpack parts that are interesting, useful or could use clarification, etc. This populates their mind with their answers and allows them to hear them expressed aloud. It is critical because it communicates that you understand their answers. Convince them that you are convinced. Then, engage them with the opportunity to bring the answers to life.
The second and equally important part of interviewing is how you listen. Your nonverbal communication directly impacts the quality and quantity of the answers. You can keep people talking by nodding your head, hand motions and facial expressions. You can always steer them away from unnecessary rambling by closing them off with your hands. Sometimes it feels exaggerated, but do not underestimate the effectiveness! Guide them with an affirming hand.
For more information, you can download the Business Profile Interview Tips and Questions PDF. The video above was brought to you again in collaboration with NovaLight Productions and wraps up the final portion of our production How-To series. The two remaining installments (forthcoming) will focus on post production and exporting. Stay tuned.