By Ben Muehleisen
It’s time to begin filming a campaign ad. Whether your video will be used for social media or television, choosing high-quality locations is key to creating strong content. With your video footage, we are trying to tell a story with images, great locations make for a great story. Here are just a few tips on how to plan for a great film shoot.
Every good film shoot starts with a list of possible locations. While we can offer generic suggestions (A diner, a field, an office…) you know your district better than anyone. Come up with your own list of locations that provide ample opportunity for both line-to-camera delivery as well as b-roll footage. B-Roll is anything that supplements direct line delivery, such as walking through a field or a group of people smiling at the camera.
Your locations should be visually interesting and spacious enough for a few people to move around with equipment. Determining which locations you need will usually depend on the script you’re working with, the image you want to project, and what is available around you.
Here are a few different kinds of locations you may want to use when filming a campaign ad, depending on your community and what matters to them. Remember, more is more. We’re going for visually interesting scenes that tell a story about you, your life, workplace, and community. Aim for colorful and full spaces that provide many points of interest.
Family Life – Whether your family is you and a pup, your spouse and kids, you and your grandchildren, or you and your partner, it is important for people to see a glimpse of your normal life. Whether that’s just going on a walk around the yard, talking on the couch, preparing a meal, or smiling at the camera together, this footage helps make you more relatable. This can be filmed in your home or a local park, wherever your family is most comfortable together.
Business and Work – Workplace settings communicate to voters that you’re a hard worker and dedicated to what you do. Try to organize the time for a few shots of you working with or talking to employees, leading a meeting, or going through paperwork. If you usually do a more hands-on kind of work, like construction or welding, keep an eye out for displaying these skills in front of the camera. Large facilities are ideal, giving the camera lots of space to move around and find just the right angle.
Community Life – For this, remember “the more the merrier!” People want to see themselves represented in your commercials because it helps them understand that you’ll be an advocate for the issues they care about. In order to show off your vibrant and diverse community, recruit your friends and family to fill key roles, such as retirees, college students, young families, and working people. Gather them together in parks, public areas like downtown or main street, or in front of iconic, local space or restaurant and just film yourself talking and engaging with them.
Agriculture – Unless you live in the heart of a city with an entirely urban constituency, there is a good chance you will need some classic farm footage. Rural scenes, such as walking through a cornfield, talking with a farmer, or standing in front of livestock all make for compelling footage that tells a great story.
Once you know the kind of locations you want to focus on in your ad, your next job becomes securing these specific places and confirming your schedule with the people involved. Many of your supporters, friends, and family will have access to many of these places and would be happy to help by connecting you with whoever is in charge.
Once you’ve confirmed you’re allowed to film in the locations of your choice, work with your consultant and production crew on a firm schedule, complete with location addresses and participant contact information. This way everyone involved will understand where they need to be and who they need to talk to at all times.
Victory Enterprises is proud to have a world-class production department that can help you achieve the film shoot and campaign ad of your dreams.
Each race is unique and the candidate running will have specific parts of their story only they know how to fill. As you think about the kind of story you want your campaign ad to tell, put locations at the top of your list.