We understand that investing in film can be scary. It doesn’t need to be. Start small and work your way up to a fully produced film. Start by using your phone to capture footage of the work you do and share it with your supporters. It doesn’t need to be polished or cost anything. Experiment with different styles, messages and aspects of your work, keeping a track of what works best.
Once you start seeing how much more engaging film is compared to texts and images, take the results to your Director and show them the potential it has before asking for any film budget. You will have gained experience, knowledge and insight into what works before you make the investment, thus making it a safer investment.
To get an idea of cost, the average 2-3 minute fully produced non profit video costs around £4500. You can bring this cost down by simplifying the film, capturing content yourself or by using a freelance videographer rather than an agency. Remember to include budget for films as part of your funding applications for projects where you need to show impact or communicate a message.
For some charities, especially those working with vulnerable people, it is nearly impossible to get someone who can tell their story on camera. That doesn’t matter. What your audience cares about is how the work your charity does changes lives. There are lots of ways to communicate this.
Tell the story of your organisation through anonymous footage, film ‘a day in the life of’ style film with a staff member, interview a volunteer. As long as the person being filmed is authentic and passionate about the work you do, the audience will connect with the message.
TOP TIP: Consider animation. There are endless style options to suit all budgets and it is a great option for charities who work with vulnerable people and can focus on the impact rather than the person.
The key to getting great results from your not profit video is in the planning. Before you start making your film, consider what message you want to be communicated, how you want the audience to feel and what your call to action is.
Messaging is everything. Don’t just film someone for the sake of it, consider beforehand if their story communicates the messaging that you need to share with your audience. Filming a story that communicates your messaging in an authentic way, is far more powerful, than trying to shoe-horn it into a film that isn’t relevant.
Think about how your film will be distributed and what assets you need to compliment it – stills, social media shorts or quotes pulled out from the film to use in an email appeal. When you come to launch the film, be bold and ask your supporters, volunteers, staff, partners, ambassadors and service users (if appropriate) to share it.
If you decide to work with a production company, work collaboratively with them, so that your team can learn skills along the way. Ask for their advice on how to maximise the results from the film – make the most out of their experience.
TOP TIP: Use our guide on how to write a charity film brief to help with your planning.
Taking the plunge into film will be one of the best things your charity can do to connect with and attract supporters. It doesn’t have to be scary. Be brave and get filming!
If you would like to have a chat about taking the first step into making a non profit video, email email@example.com