Best Practices for Editing and Post-Production from the Brazil Digital Video Accelerator

Video Accelerator

The fourth session of the Digital Video Accelerator took place May 20 in Brazil.


Digital storyteller Alba Mora Roca explained various types of video production.

Film Editing

Participating publishers shared the roadblocks they face in editing video.


In 2019, journalists can tell stories in more ways than ever before. For the fourth session of the Facebook Journalism Project’s Digital Video Accelerator (held May 20 in São Paulo in partnership with ICFJ, the International Center for Journalists), digital storyteller Alba Mora Roca discussed the technical challenges involved with different types of video production. Mora Roca, an executive producer at Latin American news organization AJ+ Español, shared her strong passion for creative innovation with attendees. She explained post-production tips, editing techniques, and software advice by video format.

Before joining AJ+ Español, Mora Roca served as the digital video operations lead for El País America, one of the leading Spanish-language newspapers worldwide. She has also worked for The Associated Press as an interactive producer. Her editing and post-production session centered on the following three topics:

  1. Digital video formats and content selection by platform
  2. Dynamics of digital video production and support tools
  3. Key elements for powerful thumbnail images
Different Formats Require Different Production Methods

A post on your webpage, a photo on Instagram, an article on Facebook, a video on YouTube – depending on your message, each pathway can provide your audience with distinct, worthwhile angles for presenting the same story. The trick, says Mora Roca, is figuring out how to best leverage respective mediums.

“Each platform has its own language, not just a separate interface or user experience,” she added. “It affects how your narrative should be created – you have to treat the platforms in different ways. Otherwise, you will not get the best results.”

Today, the first point of interaction for most viewers is a feed on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or Snapchat, rather than a publisher webpage. Thus, it’s crucial to consider how your video will look on social feeds, as well as how easily it can be shared to a wider audience.

“I work with content distribution and found it very interesting to apply her intelligence to [different] niches and different platforms,” said Marcela Rocha of Brazilian media outlet Catraca Livre.

Digital video has transformed the way you distribute content...The first screen is not television anymore, it's mobile. The audience is mobile.
Alba Mora Roca Executive Producer AJ+ Español
Production Dynamics for Digital Video

After a hands-on exercise in which participants shared the video production processes of their teams, Mora Roca explained the workflow she implements with her team at AJ+ Español. That explanation gave publishers a different model for thinking about their own processes.

“We think of video construction as a story, but it’s more than that,” said Guilherme Ravache, director of digital content for Brazilian magazine Editora Caras. “That’s why team structure and approval is so important. What [Mora Roca] presented can help in adapting this internal process.”

Mora Roca then reinforced the value of engaging creative professionals at production meetings: “We are telling stories with videos in an audiovisual way, so it is important to hear the opinions and ideas of the creators – on how we’re going to film, how the story will look, how the audio will sound – before [a story] is published.”

Key Elements for Thumbnails

Branding is crucial for videos – viewers should be able to instantly identify and recognize the affiliated media outlet. Therefore, it’s necessary to include a clear thumbnail image to help entice potential viewers to press play. In order for your thumbnail to perform well, the image should:

“Digital video has transformed the way you distribute content,” said Mora Roca. “The first screen is not television anymore, it’s mobile. The audience is mobile. Mobile means social – your video can be consumed anywhere. Thus, create your video first for smartphones. This affects how you edit, how you do the graphics, how the video ends, and how long it lasts.” She concluded by reinforcing three major messages for attendees to take away from the session:

The Video Accelerator Program

The Facebook Journalism Project’s Video Accelerator Programs are designed to help news publishers create excellent video and build sustainable business models from that work. Funded and organized by The Facebook Journalism Project in collaboration with The International Center for Journalists, the program includes hands-on workshops led by news industry veterans and coaching from industry experts. Catch up on all the lessons from the Video Accelerator here.

Sign up for the FJP newsletter for monthly updates on the Accelerator Program and its learnings.



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