6 Steps to Creating Captivating Church Videos

6 Steps to Creating Captivating Church Videos


Video communication has a way of drawing people in by capturing the essence of a story and conveying powerful moments of transformation in people’s lives. If your church communication does not contain video, you should consider adding it to your communication strategy. Creating captivating church videos is a way to create powerful storytelling and connection. That said, video is more complex because it combines a script or interview with video footage including single or multiple subjects, editing, lighting, and more. Video can be very difficult to master.

In order to shoot and edit a great church video, it requires, at minimum, a smartphone, an external microphone, and some editing software. However, lighting must be considered if shooting indoors. Many churches now have a few people who understand, light, edit, and produce videos (either on staff, on a volunteer team, or under contract). But creating captivating church videos always begin with a great story (that needs to be discovered or written). Start small and work toward more complex videos as required.

For a basic great video (that tells a compelling story), here are six steps:

#1 – Know Your Audience

Think about who will want (or need) to watch the video. Consider where it will play based on where the audience is. It can be in person, online, on social media, or at a kiosk. Once you know your audience; consider why they need to watch and the journey you must take them on (ie. start where they are and what they need to understand or change during the video).

#2 – Focus on One Need

Focus on one need, or to say it another way, answer one question. Sure, they’ll be a lot of needs in their lives but a short-form video should only focus on one of them. In the journey, you’re taking them on, what is the most important need? Resist focusing on more than one thing.

6 Steps to Creating Captivating Church Videos

#3 – Edit Repeatedly 

Like everything you do in communication, you must not post or print anything in its original (raw) form. Everything needs editing and especially a video. Think poetry and not prose. Consider your half-listening, low-attention-span audience, and make videos as short as possible. Just enough time to tell the story eliminating all unnecessary elements that extend the time or lead to complexity. Based on where it’ll be viewed, decide how much time to allow. For most venues, a short-form video is less than three minutes. That’s about all the time most church services will allow and social media/website is about the same. It takes a VERY riveting storyline (and a large budget) to get people to watch longer.

#4 – Let it Rest

Don’t rush releasing/posting a video. Once it’s been worked on, let some time go by, then watch it with a fresh set of eyes. Even better? Let someone (from your audience) watch it and comment on it. If they have questions or concerns, re-edit.

#5 – Create Compelling Video Captions

And because most people watch videos on their phones during office hours, on the go, or in the bathroom (yes, it’s true), they don’t want sound. So caption it using YouTube tools or an online translation service such as rev.com — just proof them carefully.

#6 – Post Videos Strategically

Even if the church video is intended for live viewing primarily, it’s wise to post it on Vimeo or YouTube since people will stumble upon them and be interested in the content or even share them. Since it’s critical for being discovered, spend time writing a good keyword-rich description, meta-tags, and also provide your website so they can find out more about your church.

Why Attend WAVE? (What makes us different)

The WAVE conference focuses on audiovisual and lighting first and is a traditional conference and expo with the best church AVL exhibitors and vendors in the industry. At WAVE, you and your tech team will have the time to talk with exhibitors because our expo floor is less crowded and better organized than other AVL conferences. WAVE offers the opportunity to see what others are doing and even boasts and church tour local to the conference. Experience roundtable discussions during meals and after sessions. Visit the biggest manufacturers in your area. Maximize your team’s time for education, training on equipment, and industry connection and collaboration. Lastly, WAVE offers incredible value for the education, exhibit access, networking, worship, and amenities for the price of the ticket. Lastly, we at WAVE want to see your church grow, help others find God, and feel personal satisfaction with their jobs by being educated and connecting within the AVL church tech industry. Register for WAVE today!

Mark MacDonald is a communication pastor, speaker, consultant, bestselling author, church branding strategist for www.BeKnownforSomething.com and Executive Director of Center for Church Communication, empowering 10,000+ churches to become known for something relevant (a communication thread) throughout their ministries, websites, & social media. His book, Be Known for Something, is available at www.BeKnownBook.com. Follow him on Facebook or Instagram.