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How do you write a good briefing?

Goed begonnen is de halve video

A good video starts with a good briefing. One that contains all the necessary information. What story should the video tell? Who will watch the video, and where? What impact do you want the video to have, and what do you want to avoid? 

You don’t have to write a novel. In fact it’s better to use key words and bullet points. But make sure to think about what information your video partner will need to understand the story. Do they have the necessary expertise? Do they know the industry? And what about the broader context, like the history of your company? 

To collect all of this information efficiently, we have a set of standard questions that we ask our clients during the kickoff meeting - the start of every video project we do …

1 / What is the goal of the video? 🎯

The creative concept, the visual style, the tone of voice … everything starts with your goal. What do you want to achieve with this video? Do you want to inform the viewer? Get them to act? Sensitise them? Choose only one goal per video. Because a video that tries to do too much, will miss its mark.

2 / Who is your target audience? 👤

The goal you want to achieve is of course closely related to your target audience. Who are they, and what are they looking for? What prior knowledge do they have about this topic? And what arguments might convince them?

3 / What channels will you use to share your video? 📺

Equally important is where your video will found. On your website? On your socials? In a sales presentation? This will help determine what video format we should choose, whether we use sound or not, what the total length of the video will be …

4 / What is your message? 💬

Only now do we get to the main question: what story do you want to tell with this video? Feel free to elaborate and share any piece of information that could be relevant, because sometimes a lot of information is needed to understand the full picture. However, make sure that you distinguish between the main story and the extra information. What should the viewer remember after watching the video?

5 / What makes you unique? ⭐

Time to ask about the competition. Are others doing the same thing as you? Why are you the better option? This is when we hone in on what the core message of the video should be, summed up in one sentence.

6 / What do you want the viewer to do? 🤌

Once the whole story is told and the viewer has arrived at the end of the video, you have the chance to call them to action. Do you want them to visit your website? Request a free demo? Or maybe you simply want them to remember what they just saw?

7 / What languages do you need the video in? 🌍

We also have some practical questions. Usually we start with a Dutch or English version of the video. Do you want another version in a different language? Then there are two possibilities. We can translate the whole video, including the voiceover and the text on screen, or we can add translated subtitles. 

8 / Do you have a preference for the voiceover? 📣

Man or woman, young or old(er), corporate or commercial … The voice actor you choose and the briefing you give them, has a lot of impact on the impression your video will make. In some cases the choice of voice actor is connected to the creative concept. If for example we are showing “a day in the life” of a specific character, then the voiceover needs to match that character. 

9 / Do you have a preference for the music and sound effects? 🎶

Some brands have their own jingle or background music. Even if that’s not the case, we like to check what kind of music you are looking for. Something calm? Something energetic? Something business-like?

10 / What is the deadline? 📆

In an ideal world, your video is done as soon as possible. Of course. But if you hurry too much it might mean that the end result is not as good as it could have been, in hindsight. That’s why we always want to know if there is a hard deadline for the video. Is there an event or meeting where the video will be launched? This way we can create a realistic timeline that is comfortable for both parties.

11 / What visual style are you envisioning? 🎨

For each of our clients we create a unique, tailor-made visual style. One that takes your branding into consideration. Is there a style guide we can/must follow? Are there other visual elements like icons or illustrations we can/must incorporate? Do you have some examples of videos you like, and videos that do exactly what you don’t like?

With this set of questions the most important elements involved in starting a video project are covered. The more defined your answers are, the better the result!

Is something unclear? Do you have any other questions about the art of the briefing? Try asking our creative director at 09 395 04 22 or