Creating an Online Course

How to Produce Video for Content Production? - Step-by-Step Guide with Examples & More

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Once you’ve written down and organized all the content you need for your online course, it’s time to get started with the video production process. 

This can be a tough stage for many new online course creators that don’t have experience with producing video content. 

While it may seem difficult, with the right approach and planning, you can produce professional video content that will be easy to digest for your students.

Figure Out What You Want Your Videos to Be

There are a couple of different approaches to the type of video content you want to produce. 

You can:

  • Method 1: Have “talking head” videos to accompany your lecture slides. This refers to videos where you sit in front of the camera and explain your course content directly to your target audience.
  • Method 2: Have videos that show your slides with an audio narration over them.
  • Method 3: Have a combination of both. 

Personally, we feel that the last approach is the most effective because of two reasons: 

  1. Presenting lecture slides within your videos as you explain via an audio narration can help build a narrative around what your course is about and what you’re trying to achieve. 
  2. Presenting yourself intermittently can help you connect with your students and make your online course more personalized.

While the last approach is the most effective, it’s completely understandable if you don’t want to speak directly to a camera. It can be quite difficult if you’ve never done it before and may hinder your ability to effectively communicate your ideas within your online course.

Hence, take some time to strategize what the most effective type of video content will be for your online course.


The main part of pre-production is to write a script for your online course videos. 

If you’ve gone through our posts on how to write content for online courses, you will already have this script on hand. 

The next step is to start planning things according to whatever type of video you’ve chosen to have for your online course.

Method 1: Lectures with Audio Narration

During the pre-production stage, if you’re considering doing videos where it’s just you talking while your lecture slides play on the screen, there are some things you’ll need to consider.

Firstly, you’ll have to organize your script according to what’s appearing on the screen. 

One effective way to do this is to make a shot list in the form of a table in any word processing tool such as Microsoft Word, Google Docs, etc. as shown: 

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A simple table such as this produced during pre-production can be an effective strategy to ensure that actual video production is a breeze. 

As a part of pre-production, you’ll also have to think about the gear you’ll need to create successful video(s). 

In the case of these types of video(s), you’ll only need a microphone to record audio. While you can record your voice with your computer’s or phone’s microphone, we recommend getting a dedicated one to ensure your voice is as clear as possible. 

Some great microphones that you can invest in are: 

Method 2: Talking Head Video(s)

If you’ve chosen to have yourself in front of the camera for your online course videos, you’re going to need a little more gear and a lot more planning during pre-production. 

The basic equipment you’ll need for video production are:

  • A camera
  • A microphone 
  • Lighting (Optional)

We’ve mentioned some great microphones above.

For cameras, you can opt for either a webcam that can hook up straight to your workstation or a standalone camera. 

Some great options for webcams that create effective video are: 

If you really want to produce high-quality video, you can opt for either a DSLR or a mirrorless camera. Some options to look at are: 

Lighting can be optional if you have good natural lighting in the place where you’re going to be filming. However, if you don’t have good-looking natural light, we must urge you to invest in at least some form of lighting to ensure your video(s) don’t look unprofessional. 

You can get something as small as a ring light if you’re on a budget.  

On the other hand, if you want a more professional setup, you can go for a softbox lighting kit

Once you’ve acquired all the equipment, it’s time to set the stage.

A few things to note before gettings started: 

  • Since these types of video(s) will just be there to support your lecture slides, it’s important to refer to them constantly during filming to ensure your video(s) aren’t disconnected from your course content. 
  • Try to film with an interesting background. Let your personality shine. However, don’t overdo it to the point where it’s distracting. Try to find the right balance. 
  • Take a couple of test shots to ensure lighting, framing and sound are all working properly. 

Once you’ve taken all these steps, you can begin production to create video content. 

 If you’re choosing method 3, we recommend following the same steps taken for methods 1 and 2. The only step where the process will differ is during post-production.

The Video Production Process

Method 1: Lectures with Audio Narration

Video production using this method is fairly simple since you’re not even creating a video at this point, you’re just recording audio. 

As mentioned earlier, you should do a few test runs to ensure the audio levels are correct and your voice is clear. 

After that, you can begin recording. 

Don’t be afraid to do several takes for single sentences or even phrases. 

If you’ve never done this before, it may take some time for you to get used to it. Don’t let your stuttering or slurring of words in the beginning discourage you. Practice until you’re able to speak clearly during recording.

Method 2: Talking Head Video(s)

Once you’ve set the stage for your video(s), it’s time to get started. 

As is the norm with recording any type of content, you should regularly check in between takes to see if every piece of equipment is working properly. 

You don’t want to record an hour of video only to find out your microphone wasn’t plugged in. 

Some other tips to keep in mind when recording this type of video are: 

  • Gesturing and hand movements can be compelling but try not to overdo them as they could become distracting for your students.
  • If you have a thick accent, try to tone it down to ensure your narration is as clear as possible. Alternatively, you can consider adding subtitles in post-production. 
  • Perform speech exercises to open up your vocal cords before recording video.

Method 3: Combination

For method 3, the video production process will be the same as method 2. 

You already have your lecture slides. Following the video production process described for method 2 will get you the rest of what you need: Your audio narration and video of yourself talking to the camera. 


Post-production can arguably be the most crucial step within the video production process and it’s something you’ll have to devote extra time to perfect. 

Method 1: Lectures with Audio Narration

During video editing for this method, all you really have to do is line up your narration with the appropriate slides. 

Production is fairly straightforward as all you have to do is take screenshots of your slides and import them into your video editor along with your audio files. 

Next, simply line up the appropriate slides with the appropriate narration.

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Method 2: Talking Head Video(s)

Your video strategy for these types of video(s) needs to be more rigorous and intensive to ensure your video production process is effective. 

Be prepared to spend a lot of time refining these video(s) to make them perfect. 

Some steps to take are: 

  • Cut out any dead air and/or awkward silences.
  • Fix audio levels to ensure there’s no audio clipping and you’re clearly audible. 
  • Color-correct your video(s) to ensure they look natural and well-produced. 

Method 3: Combination

For post-production for method 3, you’re going to have to take all the steps described for method 2 to produce compelling video content. 

After that, you’ll have to mix-and-match your audio narration with its corresponding slides and footage. 

Effective production for this method will come with practice as you’ll have to identify appropriate times to have slides or your face appear along with your audio narration.

One simple way to do this is to add your footage to the timeline and then start adding small chunks in between where you want your slides to appear as shown:

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As a rule of thumb, you should jump to your slides whenever you directly refer to something on them and you should switch back to yourself when you want to engage the audience with details. 

A quick note about marketing:

Video production doesn’t just help make your online courses more engaging but can also be an effective part of your marketing strategy. Consider posting clips of your video(s) onto your social media to gain traction.

Tools to Use

The tools you can use to edit your videos include: 

Adobe Premiere Pro and Elements: Premiere is one of the best video editing tools out there and you can check out our comparison post between Premiere Pro and Elements to figure out which one is best for you. We also have a post on the best export settings for Premiere that you can check out. 

Filmora X and FilmoraPro: We feel Filmora X is the better tool of the two for online course creators even though it has fewer features. You can check out our comparison post between the two for more details.

MovAVI: MovAVI is another great and easy-to-learn video editing tool for online course creators. You can check out our detailed comparison of MovAVI with Filmora X for more details.

Wrapping Things Up…

Video production is one of the most effective yet one of the most challenging aspects to creating an online course. 

The quality of your video production can definitely determine whether you find an audience or not.

Hence, you should devote as much time as you need to ensure that your video(s) look and sound professional, compelling and informative.