Video Production Tips

How to Write a Video Campaign Brief (with Examples)

Woman writes video campaign brief on laptop

Creating videos for brands has never been simpler. Everyday with the tap of a button, live-stream Q&A sessions and behind-the-scenes videos can be shared with followers on social media. But not every video project can be executed so easily. Professional video campaigns are still expected from businesses along with other content. The key to getting these right? A video campaign brief.

Whether you work for a creative agency or run your own business, knowing how to put this document together is essential. If it’s your first time writing a brief, it can feel a little overwhelming but we’re here to help. In this blog post we’ll show you how to write a video campaign brief with examples.

What is a video campaign brief?

Think of a video campaign brief as the blueprint for your project. Importantly, it should contain all of the essential information about the campaign your team should know before they get started. A brief commonly takes the form of a one to two page document and contains information including brand overviews, objectives, target audience, key messages, tone, distribution, timeline and budget. 

Briefs are all about communication and the more clearly you articulate your vision, the better your video will be. Remember, briefs influence all decision making – from lighting and tone to editing and branding. A brief written well and a brief written poorly can result in two strikingly different outcomes.

Executed well, briefs are a great way to ensure your entire team is on the same page from day one. By the same token, it can also be used to reign in the project if it ever starts to head in the wrong direction.

What to include in a video campaign brief

Overview

Your overview should give the team working on the video campaign a clear picture of the identity and campaign history of the brand they’re working for. Ensure you cite any brand information you think is essential for the team to know before they get started. Our tip? The company’s mission statement is a good place to start. On the same note, provide a brief history of campaigns from the past. This way the team can ensure that the latest project follows on logically from past campaigns and avoids repetition.

Overview example text. Paint a clear picture of the brand this video is about. Include information about what other video campaigns they've done in the past.

Objectives

Now it’s time to get specific. What does this video campaign aim to achieve? List your goals as specifically as possible. Try to avoid any vague goals like “raise brand awareness” and focus on tangible outcomes. Will this campaign increase sales, promote a new product or refresh the brand’s image?

Objectives example text. What does this video aim to achieve? Be as specific as possible.

Target audience

Who is this video campaign targeted at? Again, specifics are important here – according to Forbes if you try to create a campaign targeting everyone you’ll essentially end up targeting no one. In this section of your brief you should include demographics like age, gender, socio-economic status and education. In addition, it can also be helpful to write up a buyer persona that gives a hypothetical insight into the mindset of the ideal audience member.

Target audience example text. Who is this campaign targeted at? Remember to include specific demographics and a buyer persona.

Key messages

Your key messages should explain what this video campaign is all about. Namely, the product or idea you want viewers to think about when they see your video. This section should be concise and clear and importantly, will influence almost all other aspects of the video.

Key messages example text. What's this video campaign all about? What should viewers take away?

Tone

This is where you explain to your team how this video should feel. Will its comedic tone make audiences laugh or will its emotional, documentary style touch viewers’ hearts? At this point it’s a good idea to revisit your overview and ask if the tone fits with the brand identity.

Crucially, tone can also have a big visual influence. It’s here that you can include a mood board or some links to video examples – they’re both great ways to clearly communicate your vision with creative professionals. Conveniently, online tools like Pinterest can make mood boarding a breeze. Take your time curating this part of your brief as it can affect decisions like set design, lighting and casting.

Tone example text. How should this video feel and what should it look like? Image of mood board.

Distribution

Here, you’ll inform the team where the completed campaign video will be shared. In today’s climate, it’s likely the video will be shared on multiple platforms from television to Youtube and Instagram. Why is this important? Where a video is distributed will affect a lot of editing decisions. In this section, we recommend listing the following key requirements for each platform. 

  • Length

  • Aspect ratio

  • Silent viewing requirements (captions, layover text)

  • CTAs (does it need to link somewhere? If so, where?)

Distribution example text. Where will this video campaign be shared? Include all platforms and the key requirements for each.

Timeline

All good projects need a timeline to stay on track. Your brief should include key dates and deadlines. The timeline for a video campaign can be broken into three sections: pre-production, production and post. Generally you can start with key dates like start date and completion date. From here, you can continue to plug in more specific dates that will be informed by your team.

Timeline example text. What are the key dates for this project? Allocate them into pre-production, production and post.

Budget

It’s important for the budget to be clearly communicated with your team, that way a financially realistic plan can be put in place. Once everyone is aware of financial limits, equipment and hiring can start to take place.

Budget example text. What financial scope will this project work within? Try to be as specific as possible.

What now?

Once your brief is completed it’s time for your team to get started on the campaign video. Remember – this brief is your blueprint, refer back to it whenever you need clarity during your project. Good luck!

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