Best Practices for Video Creation Using SundaySky

In this article:
Best Practice #1: Every Good Story Starts with a Brief
Best Practice #2: Spark Your Creativity with Scene Templates
Best Practice #3: Short & Sweet: Script and Content Tips
Best Practice #4: Style Supports Substance
Best Practice #5: Practice Good Timing
Best Practice #6: Personalize Your Video

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Best Practice #1

Every Good Story Starts with a Brief


Beginning with an outline will help you organize your thoughts and think through what you want to say. As you plan your story, the following tips may prove useful:

Browse the Story Template gallery for inspiration. If you find a template that matches the message you want to deliver, go ahead and customize the template.

If you prefer starting from scratch, begin planning your video with an outline or a brief.

As a starting point for your outline or brief, take advantage of the messages that you used in previous campaigns for education, onboarding, acquisition, retargeting, etc.

Most stories will include the following three elements: (1) greeting, (2) main message, and (3) closing.

Break down your story into topics. Afterwards, order the topics according to how you want to tell your story. These will become your video scenes. 

Related Help Center articles:
Quick Start Guide to Creating a New Video
Creating a Video with a Story Template
Creating a Video from Scratch


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Best Practice #2

Spark Your Creativity with Scene Templates


Our scene templates offer creative freedom with how you tell your story. Spend some time browsing the scene template library to find the perfect match for your topics. The templates will enable you to enhance your message by using text, bullets, media, and buttons.

For simple topics or steps, use a single message template. The scene below was created with the Single Message with Media and Button scene template.

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For more complex or information-rich topics, use a scene template with bullets or a table. The scene below was created with the 3 Bullets scene template.

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To display full-frame video footage or an animated infographic, use a media-centric template. The scene below was created with the Media scene template.

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If your story includes a call to action, use a template with buttons. We recommend including a call to action only at the end of the video. If it is in the middle, viewers may click through and not finish the rest of the video. Note that buttons are not clickable in a video downloaded as an MP4 file. The scene below was created with the 3 Button CTA scene template.

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Keep the viewer experience fresh by changing the layout of repeated scene templates. A layout is just an alternative arrangement of where the placeholders (text, media, button, logo) are positioned in the scene.

Related Help Center articles:
Introduction to Scenes
Choosing a Scene Template
Working with Scene Layouts
Configuring a Button


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Best Practice #3

Short & Sweet: Script and Content Tips


Text does the heavy lift of articulating your message, both on-screen and in the narration. Tightening your main points as they appear and adding explanation in the voice-over is key to messaging clearly and effectively.

Keep the heading text short and directional. This text should include the main point of the scene and an incentive to keep watching. Following are two examples:
Instead of How to get started, write Get Started
Instead of We hope you make the switch, write Join us

If you find that you're adding too much on-screen text or narration, you may need to divide the scene into two separate scenes.
On a similar note: if the text size is decreasing to accommodate the amount of text, there is a good chance that the content will overwhelm the viewer.

The on-screen text and voice-over should complement one another. You can add more detail in the voice-over or offer new information in the on-screen text. It is important that they not repeat one another.

Related Help Center articles:
Adding Text to a Scene
10 Best Practices for Voice-over Scripting


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Best Practice #4

Style Supports Substance


Your visuals enhance the voice-over and on-screen text in your video. The right visuals can add excitement, reinforce your brand message, keep viewers engaged, and help convey your message.

Motion keeps your video exciting and engaging. While you can use images, wherever possible use videos, animations, and footage in your scenes. The SundaySky platform gives you access to millions of images and videos from leading stock libraries.

If you decide to use images, you can apply effects to add subtle movement to the image.

SundaySky provides editing tools (cropping, flipping, and video trimming) to adjust media so that they display optimally in the scene.

Preview your work as you add visual elements to make sure that you are happy with the result.

Related Help Center articles:
Selecting a Theme
Zooming in on an Image
Cropping an Image
Flipping an Image
Trimming a Video
Previewing a Video


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Best Practice #5

Practice Good Timing


The right balance of content and scene length is the key to keeping your viewers' attention throughout the video.

Aim for an about 1 minute video length as you create your video. Complex topics–onboarding or educational–may need to be longer. For videos longer than two minutes, we recommend using the chaptering feature. 

If you are telling a story, a scene on average should be between 10-15 seconds.

If your video will be used for advertising, each scene should be about 5 seconds and the overall video length should be under 30 seconds.

We recommend narrating a maximum of four sentences per scene. If you need to narrate more than four sentences, divide the content between two scenes.

Related Help Center articles:
Adding Text to a Scene
10 Best Practices for Voice-over Scripting
Adding Chapters to the SundaySky Player


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Best Practice #6

Personalize Your Video

Once the scenes are set up, you can focus on specific viewers and custom content. A personalized message keeps your audience engaged. Match specific audience attributes with your content to create effective targeted messaging. You can tailor your video with first names, display images according to a viewer's location, and even skip scenes that aren't relevant to specific groups. There are various ways to personalize a video. Continue reading to see examples of each method.  

Use brackets to insert specific dynamic text. Following are some examples:
Hi {First name}
➤ Welcome to the {Tier} level
➤ Next payment due: {Payment date}

Use message by audience for completely distinct messages based on tiers or groups. For example:
➤ Audience A (new customer): Welcome. We're happy you're here.
➤ Audience B (existing customer): Welcome back. We're glad you're part of the team.

Customize the image shown to viewers, according to their geographic location. For example:
➤ Audience A (location = Montana): [Visual of their state: mountains]
➤ Audience B (location = Florida): [Visual of their state: beach]

Customize which scenes are shown to viewers, using the scene skipping feature.
Following are two examples:
➤ Skip scene if viewer already downloaded the app
➤ Skip scene for all viewers on X plan

Related Help Center articles:
Video Personalization—How it Works
Configuring 1:1 Personalization
Configuring Messages for Different Audiences
Skipping a Scene

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