How to plan a video
Mark Horton avatar
Written by Mark Horton
Updated over a week ago

Planning well makes for an effective and purposeful video. Before you get started, open up our handy Video Plan template.

If you're looking for a quick and easy scripting template instead, take a look at our Shootsta Script Template

There are two steps to a Video Plan:

  1. Set a goal for the video

  2. Complete your script and storyboard.

Step 1: Set a goal

Objective. What are you trying to achieve with this video? Formulate your objective as one clear and concise sentence. With a clear objective, all of your other decisions will become simpler.

Target audience. Who is this video for? Be as specific as possible about the people you want to impact.

Single Key Message. What’s the one idea that you want your audience to remember from the video? Make sure it links back to your Objective!

Stick to a single key message; multiple messages make for less clear videos, lower engagement and less impact.

Call to Action. What do you want your viewers to do as a result of watching your video? A single Call to Action is best, and any more than two risks overwhelming your viewers.

KPIs. How will you measure the success of your video? Consider measuring performance at a number of points in the video journey to track the viewer’s experience and identify any points where engagement drops off. Take a look at our article on setting goals and KPIs for your video.

Video Type. What sort of video do you want to make? You might already have an idea, but take a moment now to think about whether your original idea is the best way to achieve your objective. Some of the most common types of videos we see at Shootsta are:

Piece to camera. A presenter looks directly into camera.

1-person interview. An interviewee looks just off camera, at an unseen interviewer.

2-person interview. Two people, normally a host and an interviewee, speak to each other.

Tutorials. An explanation of a process, showing the steps.

Event videos. A hype reel with vox pops, showing the story of an event (e.g. conference, party, etc.)

Visual storytelling videos. Visually-driven, narrative video, sometimes like a short film.

Platforms. Where will you share your video? Consider your target audience and your video type as you choose your platform.

Music description/ref. How do you want your video to sound? Music shapes the viewer’s emotional experience and perception of pace.

Video style description/ref. How do you want your video to look? Example videos and adjectives will help you describe to your collaborators how you want your video to look.

Mood. How do you want your video to feel? This is linked to the Music and Video Style sections and gives you space to clarify how you want your video to feel for your viewers.

Duration. How long will your video be? Check out our article on optimal video lengths for our recommendations.

Step 2. Scripting and storyboarding

Once you’ve set your goals, there are two ways you can tackle the scripting and storyboarding:

  1. If you're working on a visual-driven video, start with the visuals in the Images section of the plan.

  2. If it’s a speech-driven video you're working on, start by writing out your script before detailing your visuals.


Place your script in this section. Some videos are speech-driven, but don’t need to be fully scripted, like interviews. If you aren’t fully scripting, consider including interview questions or talking points instead. Remember to fill in the Duration section so you know how long these unscripted sections should be.


Build your storyboard digitally, using screenshots, digital images, and photos to remind you what to shoot on the day.


Once you’ve placed your images in order, use the Image Description section to outline any useful details, like the action that happens, text that you want to appear on screen, and notes about music and audio.

Shot list

On the day of the shoot, use the check mark column to tick off the shots you’ve captured, so you know that you have all the footage you need to tell your story.


The best way to figure out how long your script will run for is to time yourself reading it aloud. This also helps you make sure your sentences are short, and easy for your talent to deliver.

What's next?

And that’s your video plan complete! From here, can share your video plan with other stakeholders and anybody who needs to sign off on your plan. Next, check out the Filming section of our Video Best Practices and Templates guide for tips on how to make your shoot a success.

Need help or have questions? Contact us. We'd love to help!

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