Video content guidelines

50% DRAFT (revised by Ashley Dotterweich on Oct 20, 2020)

This document provides guidelines for creating video content for Mattermost. The guidelines should give you an idea of how to:

  • Aim for the correct audience

  • Create great video content

  • Record high-quality videos

  • Publish video content

  • Promote your video content

What is video content used for?

Video content provides a dynamic experience for viewers and can add personality and context to a topic where written content cannot. We should use video content when video provides the best audience experience for a piece of content. Some examples include discussions between two or more people and tutorials with complex or highly visual workflows.

Videos can also be helpful for repurposing live events and sessions for longer term use. This includes presentations at live events and internal product demos.

While video content is great, it isn’t always the best option for a public-facing asset, even when raw footage has already been recorded. If you aren't sure if a piece of content would be a good fit for video content, don't be afraid to ask!

Setting up your recording environment

Great video content starts with a clean recording. If you know that a session will be used for video content, aim for getting as high quality as possible. Some tips for getting the best raw content:

  • Use a good microphone: As an audiophile friend used to say, “anything is better than your laptop’s mic.”

  • Improve your lighting: Natural light is always best; check different locations to figure out where your lighting will be flattering and clear.

  • Eliminate audio and visual clutter: Select a good time to record, if possible; if light in your office is great in the morning but dungeon-like in the afternoon, or if your street has a lot of loud traffic between 3-5.

  • Do a quick check of your “recording” room: Is there a basket of laundry sitting on the table in the background? Is your door open? Are your roommates likely to start knocking around the kitchen? Do what you can to minimize distractions before you get started.

  • Include buffer time to your recording: Don’t start and stop recording right away - it’s good to give a few seconds of buffer between the beginning and end of the video so there's a smooth transition.

  • Don’t be afraid of do-overs: If you’re recording something specifically for video distribution (not live) and something happens - a police car goes by outside, cat knocks over your mic, you say the wrong word - feel free to stop, take a breath, and redo that section.

  • Take notes: If your co-speaker mentions a customer that we shouldn’t discuss publicly, or you need to redo something, time-stamped notes are helpful for making the editing process faster and easier.

An additional note for recording webinars, meetings, and other large-group calls: If there are more people than the speakers on the call being recorded, have them mute their mics and turn off their webcams before the recorded section begins. You can opt to hide participants who are not visible in your Zoom settings. This helps keep the recording free of visual and audio clutter.

Post-production/video processing workflow

What to prepare

  • A description of the video

  • Raw video(s) for editing

  • Transcript (if available)

  • Title and end cards (as needed)

  • Notes:

    • Where does the video start? Where does it end?

    • Do multiple videos need to be edited together?

    • Are there any sections that need to be removed?

    • Are there any sound or video quality issues that should be checked?

Submitting to Fiverr

For video editing we use Fiverr vendors to prepare polished videos. The following are our preferred vendors:

  • Watchclosely

  • Graphifyme

  • matteo505

Reviews and edits

Minimize the number of edits and stakeholders for any given video, and be prompt with giving feedback to Fiverr editors. Fiverr tickets close automatically after three days, so be mindful of getting your feedback in quickly.

Editing should include:

  • Editorial owner

  • (Optional) Internal stakeholders, e.g. a developer who gave a presentation on an upcoming feature

  • (Optional) External stakeholders, e.g. a customer who participates in a video case study

Preparing finished videos for publication

Mattermost videos are hosted on YouTube, which has a very simple upload workflow. Upload the video via YouTube Studio and include the following metadata:

  • Thumbnail image

  • Video title

  • Video description

  • Tags

If video is going to be available on our YouTube channel, assign it to appropriate playlists. If video will not be available on YouTube (e.g. a customer testimonial that will only be embedded on the Customers page), do not assign it to playlists and set state to “Unlisted” (not “Private”).

For access to our YouTube channel, ping @hanna.park.

Video content distribution

Video content may be promoted as part of a blog post, guide or other larger content campaign, or it may require its own dedicated campaign. Follow best practices for our Content Distribution process.

Last updated