How to Make High Quality Videos

At Stock Music Central, one of the goals we’ve set for our website is to help those wanting to get started in making their own videos by creating guides about that subject. Whether you are making documentary style videos, or How To videos, or even vlogs, it's our goal to help you get started, so we've created this guide on how to make high quality videos! Let's get started!


Step One: Planning

Most great projects start out with a very basic step, sitting down with a pen and a notepad (which you'll need for every step) and planning the project out. Basic as it may be, planning is the most important step. Without a well thought out plan, many projects fail or are slow to produce results, so planning out your video is definitely worth the time it will take. Let's take a more in depth look at this first step.

Odds are that you've already had some ideas popping into your head as to what you want your videos to be about. This is often the case, but if you haven't decided on this yet, we will talk about some ways to help you get started.

Deciding what your videos are going to be about can often be effectively done in two different ways. The first is taking an interest of yours, or something that you have a lot of knowledge about and choosing that as the subject of your videos. If you take this route, you'll be starting out with a certain level of authority on the subject and you'll be saving a lot of time by not having to research the topic extensively and you will be able to approach the project with more confidence starting out. The second way is by doing research to find out what sort of topics and videos are popular and picking an option from that research. These are both great, simple, and straightforward ways to pick the subject that you want your videos to be about.

Once you've got this first phase of planning of the way, its time to decide on things like the style of your videos and what they will include. Will your video perhaps be you sitting in a themed setting discussing and educating the viewer on things related to your subject, or will it perhaps be you visiting locations related to your subject? Perhaps your videos will be hands on instructive guides or even cool close up looks, there are many other options, and it's often a good idea to include several different styles to keep your videos more interesting and exciting to your viewers. This is the part where you decide how much energy you're willing to put in on and off camera, and what you think will attract viewers and interest your viewers so that they return for more. Remember, your primary goal here to decide on what sort of great content you are going to create for your viewers and what you have the ability to create for them.

Now it's time for the third phase of planning, equipment. Once you've decided on the styles that you want to use to make and shoot your videos, it's time to find out what sort of equipment you'll need to make it happen as well as the starting budget that you are going to give yourself to make the project happen.

The first piece of equipment that you should consider will of course be your camera. There are many different types of cameras for many different purposes, which is why its important to plan out of the style of your videos before you do any equipment planning and purchasing. We live in a particularly great time for video content creators because there are now so many low cost HD quality options as far as cameras go. You no longer have to spend thousands to buy a camera with great quality and you can keep costs low to get a camera with the quality you need. Plan on spending a lot of time researching the camera you want before you head to the store or go online to buy, because research and careful planning can be a sure-fire way to make a high-quality video.

The next piece of equipment that you will want to research and buy is a microphone, unless of course the camera that you have selected comes with a high quality mic. That of course isn't always the case, so this is the next important piece of equipment. Depending on the style of filming that you are going to do, you may want several mics that can be setup around your scenes, or maybe even just a simple lapel mic will do the job. If you planned your project out well before buying the equipment for it, you'll know exactly what you need. A good wireless lapel mic can create a world of difference in your scenes compared to using your cameras built in mic.

Besides those two important pieces of equipment, you'll also need to figure out what sort of supportive equipment you'll need to match your style of filming such as camera stands, mic stands, props, greenscreen equipment if you are planning on using those types of effects, and other various miscellaneous and maintenance equipment. Remember, taking care of your equipment and cleaning it is a must so that you get the best performance that you can out of it and so your production reaches the highest level of quality that it can.

Next you'll need to do some research to find out what kind of editing software you'll need. This is another important phase because the better your editing software is, the more you'll be able to do with it and your production with come out with a much higher quality. Take some time on this and really dig deep because with the right sort of editing software you can really do some cool things. For example, if you decide to use greenscreen effects, you are definitely going to want to look for demonstrations of different software to ensure that you get the right one for your desired effects, capabilities, and budget. These days greenscreen effects often times don't take a large budget to pull off but you can still end up finding yourself blowing a lot of your budget on other types of green screen equipment.

Besides equipment, you'll also need to figure out what sort of help you'll need to pull off your plan. Maybe it's a one person show, and you may decide on pulling the entire thing off by yourself, or you may, for example, need people who are able to act. If it's not in your budget to hire actors and actresses, you may want to see if any of your friends or family will be willing to help you out with this. You can also talk to any local college level actors and actresses as often times they are willing to help out in return for the experience they'll receive and possible acting credit once your project starts to reach the level of popularity that you are going for, and they'll also have the professionality and know how to ensure that the acting for your production is top notch.

 You may also need people to work the cameras, audio engineers, a director if you don't want to fill that role, even a set designer. These are of course things that you may not be able to start off with or may not even need depending on the type of videos your shooting, but they are something to plan out for further down the line. Remember, starting out you can often times find people willing to fill these roles for free or even to join your project in exchange for the experience or even just the fun and maybe a nice slice of the pie once your project becomes profitable if that is one of your goals.


Step Two: Action

Now it's time to put your plan into action. You'll need to start this off by organizing the content of each of your videos, like what the conversation will be for that specific video or what content you'll be showing. This is also the time to take care of any writing you'll need to do for the video, like script writing or maybe even simple intro and outro writing. Remember, this kind of organization is going to help you to make high quality videos. If your plan is to shoot more of an unplanned style of video like travel and exploration you will want to leave it open so that it sounds more natural and not planned, but it always helps to have an idea of what might happen or what you want to happen in the video.

If applicable, you'll want to have your set all prepared and you will want to get some test footage just to see how everything looks and sounds. If acting is going to be a part of your video, you may want to start practicing at least a few days in advance so that when filming starts everything is well prepared and practiced. This can be a big time saver and less of a headache.

When you start filming, whether it's just you or whether you've got a multiperson cast or even if your filming an event that you're attending, you may want to film the same scenes or portions of your videos several times. This is a good idea because something may happen that you didn't notice in one take, or there may be portions where mess ups occur and having multiple takes can save you from needing to go back or even save you from having to cut out or ditch large portions of your videos because they didn't come out right. Even sometimes for vlogs depending on the situation this may be a good idea, though vlogs for the most part differ in that you're filming your experiences so keeping it natural and authentic is the best way to go.


Step Three: Editing

Editing your video once your finished filming is a very important step that you don't want to skip, even if its a simple two minute video of you giving a simple update on a situation or giving a quick review on something. Remember editing doesn't have to be a big process for those types of smaller videos, but you want to keep even those types of videos at the highest quality that you can.

For other larger videos, plan on editing being a major process, though it often times doesn't have to be as hard as it may sound. Depending on the type of video you've filmed it may take you just an hour, or it may take several days. Regardless of the type of video, you don't want to rush through this step, it's just as important as filming.

A great way to start is by watching through all the content you've filmed, whether you've only got one take, or multiple takes, and deciding on what order you'll want it in if you haven't already and deciding which takes you'll want to try out first. After this, put it all together to form your base video and rewatch to ensure that you have all the best parts that you want in it and that you aren't missing anything or duplicating anything.

Once you have your base video together and you've given it a good thorough rough edit, it's time to start refining the video. This can include adding in effects, editing the audio, cutting parts out, and adding audio effects in. For example, our specialty, adding something like a music background, which can be a good way to increase the overall enjoyment of the viewer watching the video. Music can do everything from starting the video off with a great and memorable intro, to helping to add more to the theme and atmosphere that you're going for in the video. We have tracks like this available here: Royalty Free Background Music for Vlogs, Videos, and More (

Editing can seem like it's a bit of a headache, and sometimes it can be easy to get overwhelmed during this process, especially if you're rushing, so remember to take it easy and take your time. If you take your time you are going to end up with a much higher quality project, and you might even have fun doing it. This can be the most stressful part of the entire process, but it doesn't have to be. Remember, if you're having a good time editing and taking your time, it's a lot more likely that you are going to get a high-quality result!