Short and Sweet Campaign Video Outline

(NOTE: our thinking on campaign videos has evolved over the years. To see our current approach, visit the Guide page on Video Production.)

Here's a basic, well-tested outline for a crowdfunding campaign video:

  1. Purely visual shot(s) to capture viewers' attention. About 10 seconds. For example, a montage of people suffering from a problem your product solves or perhaps a montage of your product doing awesome things.
  2. Beauty shot of your product and text/voiceover so that by the end of the shot, people know exactly what you are going to talk about and they want to know more. About 10 seconds.
  3. Detail 1: explain one feature in detail (e.g. waterproof).
    About 15 seconds.
  4. Detail 2: explain another feature in detail (e.g handcrafted by biodynamic elves from the heart of neutron star). About 15 seconds.
  5. Detail 3: explain another feature in detail (e.g defies gravity).
    About 15 seconds.
  6. Detail 4: explain another feature in detail (e.g. glows in the dark).
    About 15 seconds.
  7. Explain who you are, how far along the project is, and how much work
    you've put into it up until now. About 15 seconds.
  8. Make it clear that you need the viewers' help, both in pledging to
    the project and in spreading the word. About 15 seconds.

That's a minute and a half. Your first cut of the video will probably be at least twice as long. Your job is to ruthlessly cut out any excess until all that is left is a finely honed machine that tells your story as efficiently as possible.

Finally, note how late in the video the part about introducing yourself comes. The single most common mistake in crowdfunding videos is putting the personal introduction first. In almost all cases, this is a mistake and a distraction from what you're actually trying to get across. After all, the people who don't yet know you won't have any reason to want to know you until you tell them about your idea and the people who already know you don't need to be introduced again.