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In Nonprofit Quarterly (NPQ), author Joe Fox lists the most common errors in videos for donors in 10 Mistakes Nonprofits Make With Video.

Covered in the article is everything from the appropriate video length (different, depending on the venue) to the importance of carefully selecting participants.

A few takeaways from the post about producing a video are:

Keep it Short and to the Point -

“Too much story is not a good story. Create a narrative and stick to it; the tighter the message, the stronger it resonates.”

Pick the Perfect Program -

“Featuring small-scale or less active programs simply to satisfy a donor or senior staff member is bound to limit the reach of your message, and your organization will lose out on its chance to make an impact. Show your best programs—now is their chance to shine!”

Timing is Everything -

“If you choose to make a video, make sure it’s the right time for the organization. A classic mistake is entering the production process for political reasons. If you do, you may find yourself struggling to find the right story and wasting a lot of time and money.”

Casting is Key -

Though it’s always good politically, sometimes the CEO is not the best on-camera choice, he explained. “Focus on capturing the human spirit of your organization. People want to meet the men and women who are the pillars of your success. They want to meet those individuals—patients, clients, beneficiaries—whose lives you’ve touched. Those are the stories that beg to be told.”

Check out the full article here for further tips and insight on storytelling and the creation of videos for your mission.