Oftentimes, it’s more effective to show instead of tell. You’ve heard us say this before in expressing the value of video. But that sentiment also applies to what you show on video.
We’ve already discussed why you should use training videos. Now it’s time to talk about a creative, effective format that we love to use for training videos: vignettes.
Think of a vignette like a sketch. It’s a short video in which people act out a scenario. We are big fans of using vignettes for training videos for a few reasons.
First, trainees can get a feel for an actual scenario they may be presented with. Instead of being told what that might look like, they actually see it and get a sense for the situation, right down to body language, tone, emotion and settings. For example, we did a series of 11 videos like this for a Veterans Administration office in Denver. The goal was to teach clinicians to use language that is more precise and consistent to improve communication between themselves and with researchers. In each video, a vignette was followed by a debriefing video to help clinicians learn a new nomenclature for describing violent self-directed behavior. In the vignettes, they were able to see how those terms sound and apply in real life situations.
Secondly, vignettes can help trainees to clearly see the right and wrong way of doing something and have examples to follow. This can apply to just about anything on the job such as customer service training. A vignette could show an angry customer and have one scenario that shows how you don’t want employees to handle that situation, and another that shows the right way to handle it. This is a good way for trainees to see your company’s policies and procedures in action.
Finally, because they are scripted sketches instead of straight explainers, there is room in vignettes for more entertainment and humor. Done right, your trainees will be engaged in the situation unfolding in front of them and you can get your point across in an entertaining and memorable way.
Once you know vignettes will be your preferred training video style, it’s important to get the right people in place. It’s not enough to ask your neighbor who was in a high school play 20 years ago to help out. To get the professional, impactful video that you need, hire professional actors. We aren’t saying you need to get an A-Lister on board (Although, how cool would that be?!) but a video production company should have resources like talent agencies that they can hire from.
Hiring a pro is so worth it because they will help you get the high quality video you need. They know how to learn lines. They know how to deliver the right emotions and emphases, and they know how to do it consistently and repeatedly so that it can be successfully edited. The actors may need to do several takes, so they need to know how to do them all similarly enough that the editor can cut from close up to medium shot to a two-shot and have it look like it was all one take. Yes, the magic happens in editing, but even editing has its limits.
If you want to learn more about how vignette training videos can work for your organization — and want a video production company with the right connections for top-notch actors — contact Denver Film & Digital today at ssealy@denverfilmdigital or 303-274-9319.