Why You Should Produce Your Own Video Learning Content


Mobile phones have come a long way over the last few years. Even if your phone is a few years old it still has the ability to record video. And for that matter digital cameras and digicams have come a long way as well. But you shouldn’t be deciding to use one or the other. You should be using both, or which ever one you feel the most comfortable using. Everyone is watching video. It’s time we started taking video production seriously as part of what training departments do.

“91% of smartphone users turn to their smartphone for ideas while doing a given task.”

Source: Google/Ipsos, Consumers in the Micro-Moment study, March 2015. Based on the online population n=9598.

Smartphone as Production Studio

Most smartphone users have benefited from watching how-to videos, or other content on their smartphones. But I would venture to guess that not many have purposefully recorded video for sharing as learning course content. And that just doesn’t seem right. I often promote the idea that training departments should function more like news departments. In fact, much of what I’ve done as an instructional designer/developer has felt very much like what I did in broadcast news. The only difference being that news departments produce significant amounts of content daily while training departments produce very little by comparison. I’d like to encourage those in our industry to take content production seriously as part of the work we do, and not handed off to others.

Using Your Smartphone to Record Video

Use your mobile device to record while on the go. And empower employees to do the same. Capture moments, processes, or conversations, that may not happen again. I’m sure there are plenty of moments where you wish you had your video camera. You do. It’s part of your smartphone. In many cases the rarity of the opportunity trumps quality.  Shaky, hand-held, video is okay and tolerated when the content is needed. Capturing and having the process, or moment, recorded is far more valuable than not at all. So don’t be afraid of using your phone for video recording.

Using Digital Cameras to Record Video

Most digital cameras these days also record video. And the pocket sized cameras are inexpensive and easy to use. If you can’t afford to hire a production team, then this is the way to go. Most pocket-sized digital cameras and DSLRs records video, but either will work fine. Camera options give you more settings and features than your smartphone. And this allows you to get better video quality if you take the time to learn how to use it.  Digital cameras have the added benefit of an SD card slot allowing for as much recording as you have SD cards. Your mobile device is usually limited on space, and will struggle to process long segments.

For some reason within our industry I’ve found a stigma attached to recording video. There is a fear of doing it wrong, or that it’s someone else’s responsibility. And so great opportunities are missed because, “I wish the video guy was here to capture this.” Well, guess what? Everyone is the video guy! Be proactive and capture great learning moments. Share them on your internal social network, or incorporate them into your training courses in your Learning Management System.  Business moves to quickly to wait for the production team. Practice recording video, and learn to be prepared when opportunities present themselves.

Tell me how you produce video. I’d love to share your stories of success with others who need to hear it.