What to put in the video background. Set Design.

What you put in the video background communicates a lot about you. In film, documentary or stage production it’s called the “mise en scene” – the process of setting the stage. Mostly it’s just Set Design.

It represents an opportunity to establish your positioning, not to be wasted. So think about it in the pre-production video planning stage.  Here’s an example.

Recently a client came to us with an app he’d developed and wanted to explain with a video.  He was keen to show the app on a tablet or ipad, clean and simple on a white background, like this:

media blender video

We did film this version on the white background, with the hand coming into screen and showing the functions of the app.  The final would have had just music and text on screen to explain.

After a bit of discussion and looking at others examples, we persuaded the client to go with this as the final video:

Especially with the first scene, using an actor looking comfortable at home, adds so much sub-conscious meaning. It adds production value and positions the app.  Plus we used the actor’s great voice instead of just on-screen text.  The client was really happy with this outcome.  The investment was only a little more with the actor.


A core marketing concept is to “position” your product or service relative to competing solutions, metaphorically speaking. It’s the image you create. It covers the design, pricing, packaging, niche you serve and all touch points involved with the product or service. It even includes the background you select for videos you make. Should your interview be on the factory floor, warehouse, office or outside? What props should you have at hand?

If you can’t access the location you want, there’s always the option of filming the subject on green screen and faking it. You can put them in a trendy co-working space or a forest if that’s what you want. Your editing software makes ll the green pixels transparent. Then you put your chosen background image on the layer below the subject so they’re in front. It’s not always convincing though and I prefer to film in a real location if possible.

So next time you’re using pictures or videos on your website, think about alternative locations and backgrounds. How can they establish the context and position you in the market?

Contact Keith at Clips That Sell and we can discuss video options.