Ever since the earliest prompting devices were crafted out of rolls of butcher paper, video production teams have recognized the value of teleprompters. They keep the script in front of the speaker’s eyes and help them deliver their words with consistency and clarity. If you use scripts in your video content, think about the value of a teleprompter and how it can improve the quality of your videos.
A teleprompter isn’t just another piece of fancy yet ultimately optional equipment. Using this device can mean the difference between an amateurish video that takes hours to shoot and a crisp, professional message that requires less prep time. Learn more about how this one technological advancement can boost your production value tenfold.
Keeps Your Speaker on Message
When your onscreen speaker must memorize their entire script prior to shooting, they may end up peppering their monologue with “um” and “err” as they grasp for the next word. Forgetting lines, getting speaking points out of order, or going on tangents can all distract from your intended message.
While it’s still useful to have your speaker memorize their script, the teleprompter acts as a helpful backup. As its name implies, the teleprompter exists to prompt a speaker who’s already prepared, not to feed them the entire speech for the first time.
Encourages Eye Contact and Audience Connection
Most teleprompters for video content are set up near the camera to encourage the speaker to maintain eye contact. Before teleprompters were used widely, especially in news applications, onscreen speakers had scripts printed out on paper. However, having a speaker constantly glancing down at the script then looking back up at the camera can break the audience’s immersion and cause a disconnect.
With a high-quality teleprompter, though, the onscreen speaker can maintain consistent eye contact with the camera. Viewers are more likely to engage with the video and watch it from beginning to end if they feel like the speaker is connecting with them.
Reduces Overall Shooting Time
If you’ve ever recorded a scripted video without a teleprompter, you probably shot at least a few takes of the speaker flubbing their lines or pausing for too long. Letting the camera roll while the speaker figures out the next portion of the script or asks for a line eats up time, both during the shoot and in post-production.
Incorporate a teleprompter into your next scripted shoot and experience the difference for yourself. This device puts the words right next to the camera, scrolling by at a steady pace so the speaker can read them clearly. Of course, there are other factors that can take up extra time during a shoot, but a teleprompter saves you valuable time where the words are concerned. You may even find yourself getting the footage you need in a single take!
If you’ve never used a teleprompter before, try one that works with technology you may be more familiar with. A tablet teleprompter is compatible with commonplace devices like smartphones and iPads, and is easy even for beginner filmmakers to use.
Makes Your Video Easy To Follow
A clear and concise script is the first step in creating video content that’s engaging and accessible to a wide variety of viewers. The next step, of course, is delivering that script as it was written.
Improvising video content can create a friendly and laid-back vibe when executed well, but it can also come across as hurried or scatterbrained. Your viewers will have an easier time paying attention to your video if the scripted words are written and delivered clearly.
Increases Production Value of Live Content
Are you interested in dipping your toes into the world of live-streamed content? Live videos can increase engagement and interest in your content, but they present challenges of their own. When you shoot videos live, you can’t edit around awkward pauses, skipped lines, or tangents that aren’t on message.
As you set up for your livestream, don’t forget to load your script into a teleprompter so that the speaker can read it easily and confidently. Having your message ready to go beforehand boosts the overall quality of the live video and makes your production look and feel more professional. This way, viewers will be more likely to engage with your content and tune in to any future livestreams you host.
Saves Time in the Editing Room
As previously mentioned, shooting without a teleprompter can leave you with a lot of unprofessional, unusable takes. Depending on the speaker to perfectly memorize the script, then shooting take after take of hesitant or unprepared delivery, can waste time during the shoot. It also wastes time in post-production.
Do your speaker and your editing team a favor by investing in a teleprompter. Often, you’ll be able to shoot a confident and high-quality video in only one or two takes. Your editors will save plenty of valuable time, and your speaker will feel more comfortable in front of the camera—which can make a world of difference.
Reduces Speaker Anxiety
Even highly trained actors and newscasters still get pre-shoot jitters from time to time. Performing for an audience of any kind is exhilarating, but it can also induce some anxiety. Those nerves can get turned up to 11 if the speaker is expected to keep their whole script perfectly memorized and at the forefront of their mind.
A teleprompter truly is an onscreen speaker’s best friend. While this device isn’t a replacement for memorization or an excuse to come in unprepared, it does provide an extra layer of security with its trusty scroll of words. When the script is there in front of them, the speaker feels more confident in their delivery; even if they pause for a moment, they can get right back on track.
If you want to hone your video content production skills, think about how a teleprompter can help you improve your process. A teleprompter certainly isn’t a replacement for adequate pre-shoot preparation, but learning to use one can save you and your team plenty of time and effort.
Interested in purchasing your first teleprompter? Browse Glide Gear’s impressive selection of video equipment and choose a prompter that is commensurate to your needs.