Advice on making a video trailer

2020 update coming

One of our priorities this year is raising CoDI’s social media presence, video efforts will be focused on everyone having a short video (less than 60 seconds) presenting their show. This is in order to have attention grabbing videos which incite curiosity without giving too much away about the actual content of the show which will be accepted as videos by all main social media platforms (Instagram, twitter and Facebook) without people having to click on links every time. Ideally, every show would have one of these very simple videos which- hopefully- will be very easy to make using this document as guidance.



Your office

Nicer building in the uni


Somewhere relevant to your show (past examples include: dentists, botanic gardens)


Ideally- open with questions, a divisive statement or surprising fact. The focus is on the controversy and dangerousness of the idea you are presenting.

Any props (the more weird and homemade-y the better) are welcome but by no means essential. Just use the sort of stuff you’d use in the show, if any.

What should you talk about?


Shocking facts or data are a good alternative to more exaggerated statements when dealing with sensitive subject matter.

Other ideas to include:

  • Relevant examples from the news or pop culture which will be accessible to people.
  • Political or social implications of your dangerous idea.
  • Aspects of the controversy
  • Personal relevance to you

Don’t say what you will do in your show: do it!

Think about what would be interesting for the people your show is targeting.

*Humour is great but don’t feel you need to be funny if it doesn’t fit your personality or subject, the most important thing is make it interesting.

Examples really short and to the point, inviting people in with a relatable situation and proposing questions people would want answers to. interesting and relevant location, interesting facts, inviting people to come and join a discussion not just hear about a topic. introduces the topic in an accessible way, sets up a clear debate and points of contention, addresses the audience and invites discussion. really good example of pushing an idea to its extreme- you just wouldn’t have time to add the nuance and it’s not necessary for this type of video.


The easiest way to do this would be have a friend film for you. However if this isn’t possible try to set up your phone on a stable surface at face level or use a tripod if you have one.

*make sure to hold your camera landscape, it makes editing much easier!


Unlock your phone and go in to ‘camera’.

Swipe to the right on to the ‘video’ function.

Position your camera at an angle/ height at which your face is clearly visible. If you don’t have a friend to help this might take a few tries so maybe do a short video first and then check it to see if adjustments need to be made.

Press the red button in the middle, get in position, and deliver your talk.

When you have finished press the same button again to stop recording.

Watch your video through to make sure there are no issues with sound or image to avoid having to re-record later.


Unlock your phone and enter the ‘camera’ app.

Switch the camera mode in the Camera app to video recording.

When video mode is active, the Camera app’s screen the Shutter icon becomes a Record icon. Touch that icon to start recording video.

Get in position and deliver your talk.

Touch the Pause or Stop icon to pause or stop recording, respectively.

Watch your video through to make sure there are no issues with sound or image to avoid having to re-record later.


Upload videos to your computer, save as a document with name “your name-promo video-raw footage” and send to


Send directly from your phone via facebook to Lola Moutel-Davesne


Your name and name of show will be in the video.

Date, time, place, link to tickets will be in the description.

CoDI logo at the end.

Video editing will be done on

It is fairly instinctive to use and can be done in a few minutes HOWEVER if anyone is not confident they can make the video look like the example I am happy to be sent raw footage and edit myself for uniformity, since the videos are so short and hopefully one take this should be quite simple.

The example video is attached in the email.

Longer interview style videos

Some of you from previous years may have made longer, more structured, in depth videos. These are of course still highly encouraged especially for your own websites and social media. Moreover these may be used on the CoDI blog (like last year) – but I understand that not everyone will have time for this or necessarily want to.

Moreover, these more “interview” type videos could be converted into Instagram stories by me or feature on our other social media platforms if you wish. More excitingly, but perhaps more scarily, I was hoping to trial some in person Instagram stories or live streams with anyone interested. This would probably be in July for the build up to the shows. Please let me know if you would be interested in any further information on this or helping me try this idea!

This information was originally created by Lola Moutel-Davesne, our summer 2018 CoDI intern. 

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