Channel your inner Liza Minelli or Justin Timberlake and bring some pizazz to your marketing videos! From tips on hiring dancers and entertainers, to practical production suggestions, this post will help you add some glitz and glamour to your marketing videos.

How to hire dancers and singers.

When it comes to hiring dancers and singers, you’ve got to nail it. The marketing team at Toyota found these guys and the video for the Toyota Corolla was an instant hit:

You might not have the budget of Toyota’s marketing team, but you will still want to hire dancers and singers who are excellent performers. Finding reliable, talented extras is easy – and relatively inexpensive – when you know where to look.

  • Use an agency. They may cost a little more, but the booking process is easy you can be assured that the performers will turn up on time and ready to start work.
  • Look through portfolio websites. This can be time-consuming, but you will be in control of who appears in your video. Once you find talent, that person may be able to assist in finding additional people in their industry.
  • If your budget is low, try freelance websites such as Fivrr and SoundBetter.
  • Send out a call on social media, asking interested performers to send you a 30 second video.

When you have built up a list of great performers, all you need to do is contact them the next time you need to sprinkle a little showbiz magic on your video!

How to sample music legally.

Take a look at this commercial from Honda:

It just wouldn’t be the same without the sample of Kelly Clarkson’s “My Life Would Suck Without You,” would it?

There are times when you can use royalty-free music and it doesn’t make any difference to the video, and there are times when you need to sample a song. Trust us, when you see the end result, you’ll know that going through the legalities of using copyrighted music is worth it.

  • Rule 1: Simply giving credit for using copyrighted music isn’t enough. You still won’t have the legal right to use it in your video.
  • Rule 2: You will need to obtain two licenses: one from the record label and one from the publisher. The publisher could be a large company or the songwriter themselves. You can find publisher information from ASCAP, BMI and SESAC.
  • Rule 3: Address all correspondence to the licensing or business and legal affairs department.
  • Rule 4: Detailed information about the sample needs to be included in your correspondence with the record label and publisher. They will want to know the length of the sample, whether it will be repeated, and how you will be using the song. Include a working copy of your recording.

You will have to pay to sample copyrighted music. If it is too expensive, we recommend working with an indie artist to come up with something new. Most will be very happy to discuss this, and you may well have the next big hit on your hands!

Coordinated action versus chaos.

If you have in mind an all-singing, all-dancing marketing video, choreography is essential. Spending time choosing the right venue is also extremely important. Look at these elements in the video for Lipton Ice Tea:

You will need to have a clear idea of what you want your video to look like and be able to describe it to your team. If possible, give examples so every member of the production (whether they’re behind or in front of the camera) knows what you are aiming for.

The dancers will be a great resource when it comes to choreography – they are the professionals, so be sure to ask for their thoughts. But, if a complicated dance routine featuring many performers is central to your marketing video, hiring a choreographer is a good idea. You can use the same search techniques as listed above in ‘How to hire dancers and singers’.

You will decide with the choreographer how long they will spend on teaching and rehearsal with the dancers. To minimize costs, you could hire their services for a shorter time, and record the last few run-throughs so the dancers can work on this independently.

If you are considering a large production, be sure to hire a space that is big enough. Is there a lighting grid? Air con? If you will be using a lot of heavy props, a venue that has drive in access will make your life a lot easier!

And that’s a wrap!

Making a marketing video that feels like a stage production is not an insignificant task. It will take time to bring together every element – singers, dancers, choreographers, and legal rights – but the end result will be breathtaking. Give it a go and share your videos with the SproutVideo community on Facebook and Twitter!

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