Save money and don’t videotape your seminars!

Why on earth would a video company tell you not to videotape a seminar? Duchin Productions always wants to provide the best solution for every project, regardless of the financial impact to us. In fact about 80% of the time, we recommend that clients to skip videotaping seminars and simply record the audio content. Here’s a breakdown of the reasons why:
– You’ll save money $$$
Audio recording is significantly less expensive than video recording. Hooking up an inexpensive, solid state audio recorder is a piece of cake and sound great. If you’re speaking in a ballroom that has a sound engineer operating a microphone mixing console, chances are the engineer will give you an audio feed without too much hassle. Throw them a “thank you” tip and they might even press the record button for you.
– Add your PowerPoint slides and photos to your audio recordings
Adding slides and photos from an event to an audio recording is very simple for just about any professional editor. Many people don’t realize that incorporating graphics with sound builds a video slide show. This can then be uploaded to free video sites like YouTube and Vimeo to increase your exposure and potentially improve your search engine rankings.
– Great camera + poor lighting = bad video
Most speaking opportunities involve video projection and PowerPoint slides. This usually means the room lights will be lowered to see the screen better. A dark room mixed with a bright video projector produces unprofessional results. Larger speaking engagements will sometimes have elaborate stage lighting, but with event budgets shrinking, this is no longer the norm.
– White Walls
So you just paid $2,000 for a video crew to capture you on stage. You bought a new suit, new tie and you’re ready to go. You walk in the room and all you see are white, bland, boring walls. You also learn that the room is filled with bright, florescent lighting that can only be turned on or off and not dimmed. The point is if you’re going to spend the money on videotaping, be sure the venue space reflects the image you want to project.
– What’s the value of seeing YOU?
It’s absolutely important that your audience connects with you. So how does someone see you without a video camera present? Simply insert a headshot at the beginning and end of the presentation. Don’t forget to add a strong call to action at the end too. If you happen to look like Brad or Angelina, then an argument could be made for videotaping your presentation all on video.
And if you’re describing a product or demonstrating software, put the spotlight on the product and not the presenter. Let your slides reinforce the concepts you’re explaining.
– Share your message easily and conveniently
So many people own small portable audio players (like iPods). By making your audio available for downloading, people can take your content with them and listen on their time. Not everybody has video-capable media players or sufficient bandwidth view large video files which is why audio is so attractive.
– Do you really need an audience?
Why do you need to record your presentation with a live audience and in a situation where you only have one take? On-site recording is also more expensive that going into a simple studio or board room to record. Plus there are other advantages such as being able to control ambient noise (no clanking dishes) and the ability for a second take.
-When to Consider Video
Despite all that you’ve just read, there are situations when you will absolutely need video. If you’re performing a physical demonstration or you have a person that’s rarely in public, opt for video. Current technology can do wonders with poor video, but there is never a substitute for great audio.
Hopefully this has been helpful and will some day make you a hero to your bottom line.
As always, if you need video or audio support for your business, please be sure to visit us at or toss an email to