Video Tips

How to Give Actionable Video Feedback (Expert Tips)

Eliza Talvola

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Video content has become the #1 most helpful form of content (according to a 2022 survey). And with drag-and-drop video makers like Animoto, anyone can become a video producer.

How-to-Give-Actionable-Video Feedback(Expert-Tips)

Video content has become the #1 most helpful form of content (according to a 2022 survey). And with drag-and-drop video makers like Animoto, anyone can become a video producer.

A crucial part of creating great videos is collecting video feedback. Sharing feedback not only results in better work, it helps strengthen teams. About 85% of employees take more initiative when they receive feedback. About 73% of employees also said that receiving feedback makes them better collaborators.

Below we’ll share when and how to give and receive feedback and how to use it to make your best videos yet.

What is video feedback?

Video feedback is verbal or written critique of your video.

No matter what type of video you make, it’s always great to get another set of eyes on it before sending it out into the world. It can be used to point out typos or confusing points of your video, or suggest improvements to make it better.

We’ll get into how to make sure you give and collect feedback that is actionable and helpful below!

Why is video feedback important?

Video feedback ultimately helps you make videos that can be enjoyed by more people. As Animoto’s Creative Director of Motion and Video, Martin Koch, put it, “When you’re the only person looking at a project, you could overlook mistakes and opportunities to improve. Getting more eyes on a project means more unique and valuable perspectives.”

Here are even more benefits of feedback.

What are the benefits of giving video feedback?

When feedback is timely, actionable, and in-context, it can save you time and money. Most importantly, it makes for better videos!

Saves time: When you collect video feedback all in one place, you don’t have to spend time sending version after version to multiple people.

Saves money: Less time and effort spent on video editing means more money savings! Plus, once you create an effective video, you can use it as a blueprint to scale up video production quickly and efficiently.

Promotes collaboration: Using a video feedback tool that offers full transparency to others’ comments promotes collaboration! People across multiple industries, departments, and even cities can all come together to give feedback on your videos and respond to others.

Helps avoid errors: Don’t wait until it’s too late to fix your videos. Getting additional eyes on your project helps you avoid simple mistakes like typos, audio issues, and more.

More diverse perspectives: What resonates with you might not resonate with your audience. By inviting feedback from a diverse group of collaborators, you can make sure your video makes a positive impact for your audience.

5 effective tips for providing clear video feedback

Video feedback can take the shape of comments, email chains, voice messages, and word documents. The purpose is to improve your videos and ensure that they are achieving all that was laid out in the project plan.

In today’s hybrid workforce, collecting feedback from clients and teammates can be tricky. That’s why we’ve asked Animoto’s professional video producers for their advice on giving feedback that makes videos better.

1. Don’t lose sight of the bigger picture

Writing a video creative brief is the best way to stay on track and create videos that everyone is proud of. When giving and taking into consideration feedback, look at it through the lens of the brief. Will the requested change get you closer to the objective? Are you viewing the video from the perspective of your target audience?

Freda Mokran, Senior Video Marketing Producer of Animoto, suggests that you also include visual references within the creative brief. By aligning on the target audience look and feel, and goal of the video, the creative brief can help streamline the review process.

If you're not responsible for writing the brief, make sure you get familiar with what the producer will be creating before they get started. This will help make sure you're on the same page about the why and how behind the video.

Giving Good Feedback tip 3 (1)

2. Start giving feedback at the 80% mark

Sending a rough cut often prolongs the review process. With so much left to do, reviewers can get stuck on elements of the video that should have been a placeholder. That’s why our expert video makers recommend collecting feedback when your video is about 80% done.

The creative brief should have helped you get to this point. From here, your internal team or a client can recommend small tweaks and finishing touches to wrap it up. By cutting down on multiple review sessions, you can trim down excess communications and collect feedback when it matters.

3. Explain your reasoning

Understanding the why behind certain changes will help avoid future edits. When giving feedback, explain your reasoning. You may even find that the edit you suggested isn’t as impactful as you originally thought.

When you provide context for your requested edits, it opens up a dialogue instead of another to-do.

Giving Good Feedback tip 3 (2)

4. Be specific

Provide feedback that has a clear call to action. Avoid saying things like “I don’t like the color” or “Make it pop.” Instead, call out exactly what you think could improve and provide suggestions to do so. Less ambiguity means speedier edits!

Giving Good Feedback tip 3 (3)

5. Put feedback in context

With so many different frames, it can be hard to track down exactly where you’d like to make your change. Including time stamps with your comments ensures that the editor knows exactly what you’re referring to. With Animoto’s online video collaboration tool, every video comment automatically includes a timestamp. However, if you have to add it manually, try pausing the video and writing down the timestamp or including screenshots.

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How to handle negative feedback on your videos

While some believe that all feedback is good feedback, there are certainly things that you as the reviewer can do to give great feedback and handle negative comments.

Sally Sargood, Animoto’s Chief Video Officer, believes that giving great feedback starts with your mindset. When many people hear the word “feedback”, they think there is something wrong with their project. But if you start viewing feedback as helpful advice, it becomes easier to welcome and accept feedback.

Similarly, when giving feedback, it’s important to keep in mind that you’re not just looking for flaws. Remember to tell the project owner what you liked and what works with their video as well. Positive feedback is constructive feedback too.

Another way to start giving good feedback is to remember unhelpful feedback you've been given. Chances are, it was brief, confusing, or pointed out issues without providing solutions. We’ll dig into things you should do to make feedback better, but before that, here are some other things to avoid.

  • Only giving critical feedback.
  • Losing your message under too much sugar coating.
  • Not being specific.
  • Only providing criticism, not solutions or suggestions.
  • Waiting until the last minute, or until you are frustrated.
  • Not putting feedback in context.

Tips to Give Video Feedback: Helpful vs Unhelpful

As for handling negative feedback, remember to keep the video goal in mind. Explain your reasoning to add context to aspects of your video that weren’t well received. Ask questions for further explanation. Ultimately, whether you move forward with the “negative” feedback or not, remember your goal and the perspective of each individual.

How to provide actionable video feedback in Animoto

With Animoto’s Commenting feature, you can create professional videos and gather feedback all in the same place. Follow the steps below or dig in deeper to this complete guide to Commenting.

1. INVITE REVIEWERS

Send a private email invitation to your colleagues and clients to review your Animoto video project. Only those who are invited to comment via email and sign up for a free account will be able to view and comment on the video.

2. START COMMENTING

Once invited to your video, commenters can watch the video, pause it at any moment, and leave a time-stamped comment.

3. REPLY TO COMMENTS

To reply to someone’s comment, simply click the “Reply” button below their comment, type, and submit. Your reply will appear indented below the original comment.

4. EDIT AND REMOVE COMMENTS

Made a typo or mistake? You can easily edit and delete your comments. To edit your own comment, hover over it with your mouse and click the “Edit” icon that looks like a pencil. Make your edits and click “Save” to update your comment.

5. RESOLVE COMMENTS (PROJECT OWNERS ONLY)

As you apply changes and suggestions from your team, you can resolve comments by clicking on the small circle in the top right corner of the comment. This will remove the comment and all subsequent replies from the list of “Open” comments in the comment window. The person who made the comment will receive an email upon resolving.

6. FILTER AND SORT COMMENTS

Open the “Filter by” drop down menu and select “Open” or “Resolved” to quickly see which comments still need work. Martin also recommends that you treat comments as a to-do list so you never lose sight of the feedback. This also gives collaborators insight into the work you’re doing and how close your video is to the finish line.

You can also open the “Sort by” drop down menu and choose to sort comments by “Newest First”, “Oldest First”, or “By Block”. Sorting “By Block” displays comments based on the order of the video i.e., comments at 0:02 show first, comments at 0:04 show second, etc.

And that’s it! All your video feedback is in one place so you can make videos that everyone can be proud of.

The 6-step video production process

In an ideal world, the process of video production is streamlined, simple, and efficient. In reality, remote work constraints and miscommunications often get in the way. With multiple email chains to sort through and team members to chase down, feedback often gets lost. Once it’s found, it can be difficult for the video producer to put them in context. While each organization and team may approach the video creation process differently, this is often how it goes.

Step 1: Project brief

Whether formal or informal, the project starts when you set the objective. Great project briefs are often very detailed and address the target audience, goal, messaging, timeline, and style of the video. This is the time to collaborate with multiple stakeholders of the video and make sure all teams are aligned. This will also be the filter that all feedback runs through.

Step 2: Script development

Knowing what to say in the video is crucial to quick edits and reviews. Whether displaying text on the screen or including a voice-over track, a great script ensures that your video is on the right track.

Step 3: Storyboarding

Visuals can convey much more than narration and words on the screen ever could. Storyboards help to put the script in context and make sure your video will come together frame by frame. Check out this blog for step-by-step guidance on how to create your own video storyboard.

Step 4: Review

Now that you’ve agreed upon a project plan, script, and storyboard, it’s time to get busy! The platform you create videos with will largely dictate how smoothly your review process goes.

Start giving effective feedback on videos today!

There are lots of things that can bog down your review process. It’s hard to track down feedback when it isn’t given in context. Not to mention the time spent downloading and sending new versions of the same video back and forth.

Reviewers also miss out on collaborating and seeing what their colleagues are saying. Without a centralized place for feedback, video producers and reviewers could waste time chasing down feedback and digging through email threads.

So, are you ready to start leaving great feedback and making your best videos yet? Sign up for free and use our customizable templates to get started.