The Art of Evergreening HOAs

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Reasons HOAs inherently fade away
Let’s face it, unlike broadcast quality television shows, most HOAs (Hangouts on Air) are produced by amateurs who serves both as both technical crew and talent. Whether acknowledging the live audience or upcoming events, live HOAs are often interspersed with dated material. Perhaps most importantly, most HOAs are no more than spontaneous discussions, in other words, first drafts.

For these reasons, HOAs are rarely “evergreen,” meaning they won’t survive the test of time and will likely fade from relevance within a week or two from original broadcast. But don’t despair. You too can rescue your HOAs from the vault of obsolescence and obscurity.

The Art of Evergreening HOAs is mostly the exercise of subtraction. Like a fine sculpture, chip away at what’s unnecessary, and what you’re left with can be a work of art. This is done through skillful video editing.

In a sentence, to evergreen your HOA, increase production values and edit out dated, awkward, repetitive and irrelevant material. Leave only enough small talk in the program to smooth out rough edges and to give it its personality. Remember, shorter is better.

A few evergreening tricks:

— Clean intro and exit, preferably with pre-produced open/close that includes music.
— Most host questions are too long. Keep the core question. Throw away everything else.
— Most guest stall while mentally formulating their “real answer.” Dump the filler material and keep only the answer.
— Panelists will make their point, then illustrate it with examples. Usually only keep the point, edit out everything else.
— People repeat themselves. If it’s been said one way, then discard other ways of saying the same thing.
— If the speaker takes a long pause to think, edit out the pause.
— Remove almost all ummms, ahhhhhs, ya knows, and “so’s”
— Remove audience shout outs.
— Retain audience comments only if they add real value.
— Don’t include “upcoming events,” though you can keep, “find me at …”
— Avoid jump cuts (where subject’s body appears to jump in the frame due to editing)
— Don’t be afraid to group and reorder material if that improves clarity and flow.

Follow these guidelines, and their’s a good chance your Hangout on Air will be as fresh and relevant in six months or a year as it was the day it was recorded. Expect however to spend up to five or more hours to evergreen a typical hour talking heads HOA.

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