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Q: Our 5 hour PowerPoint training presentation on Making Our Products needs professional web video services to turn it into a one hour web video production.

I see this on hour as spread over a series of web videos, so I would like advice as to what web video services I would need, and how to plan for this project.

And how to get the best quotation to produce our web videos.

Human Resources Assistant
Washington DC

A: You need to closely consider what web video services you require as converting a 5 hour Powerpoint into a series of web videos is a big job, albeit a fundamentally easy one.

I first started doing this type of powerpoint-to-web video conversion for companies in 2006, when it was in its infancy.

By 2007 we were doing this for major industrial clients, safety trainers rather than marketers. In 2008 we developed a web video production method that allowed these lengthy video to be produced for the internet at relatively low cost.

But looking at the actual production of powerpoint-to-video services, here is an outline of the newest  process.

Training video production for web – Procedure

The production procedure is about what works:

> You write a script around your existing Powerpoint. Typically, say it out loud then write what you say.

> Send the script to your web video producer for cleaning and polishing, and developing into a 60 minute runtime framework. This is approx 6,000 words.

> The script is then recorded by a professional voiceover. Don’t use an amateur. They never sound good. Great audio pays off in better motivated staff and workforce.

> The Powerpoint is also video recorded on a PC (or Mac), and then synced to the professional voiceover recording.

> This is then produced as a series of web video modules delivered as flash .flv (or featured as modules on an interactive DVD, or as windows media .wmv if rqd)

Estimating the cost of web video services

Producing a quotation needs some more thought as 60 minutes of runtime is costly because of its relatively long length.

Here are some pointers that affect your costs:

> The Powerpoint recording and video editing can be carried out at low cost by using an experienced junior editor under the supervision of a senior professional. Obviously this saves money over using solely a high-level web video editor. And of course you don’t need any filming, camera or location work.

> The script developement requires expertise, which comes at a higher cost. So very much it depends how much of the training video script you write in advance, and thereby save money. Whatever you can do is technically free.

> You also need to consider that a highly polished voiceover web script, written by you, will cost a lot overall less than a scrappy in-house script that will need a lot of checking and revision by a professional scriptwriter.

> Do all web development in-house, such as a contents, hosting, web page design, promoting in your user, social media or blog areas, or comments post, distribution throughout your different websites and networks, etc.

Other points include:

> Simple graphics can be added to the Powerpoint video to ensure that key messages are clearly highlighted and presented for impact. This can be done quickly, easily and cheaply.

> But an initially poor Powerpoint can’t be revived in this way. For example, in areas where there is one boring slide after another (no graphics or stills, dense bullet point text, poor images, long slides), this will seem to go on for ages. Let me rephrase this: A web video studio can revive boring bits as part of their services, but it is a higher cost item that you will most certainly have to pay for. You can can avoid this situation with advance careful checking and preparation of your Powerpoint training modules.

Web video services – Summary

You need a mix of high cost and low cost web video services to get the optimal price/production quality balance. Sharing the work like this will minimise any error, or solve previously unrecognised problems. Regular telephone conferencing will work fine here.

Overall, because of the length of the project, you can see that making your workforce web videos is a partnership between your and your web video producer, with both you taking different roles.

The cost very much depends on how much of the work you can reliably carry out on-house and, in so doing, reduce the web video studio cost elements.

Also you need to feel comfortable with an experienced junior doing the work under expert supervision.

If you take all the above points into consideration when negotiating a price for web video services, you’ll get a better offer, and a happier, more effective web video production company partnership.

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