4 min read

How Do You Make an Inspiring Year-End Testimonial Video? Go Behind the Scenes

How Do You Make an Inspiring Year-End Testimonial Video? Go Behind the Scenes
The Kathacharya Productions team at their office in Kathmandu, Nepal

15,813 projects completed in 142 countries by 3,420 creatives. Storyhunter freelancers knocked 2022 out of the park, and we want the world to know. So, what did we do? We tapped into our network to find a production team who could create a high-energy, 90-second vertical video celebrating our global community. We discovered and hired a talented team in Nepal. Journey with us to the Himalayan country as we go behind the scenes of our 2022 recap video.

How did we find our match?

We love hiring and working with creatives on our platform. It’s one of the most fun parts of our brand marketing journey. In 2022, we published a posting for a production company to produce and edit a vertical video for us on how Red Bull uses Storyhunter to create its brand stories.

Twenty-one freelancers and production companies applied. We were immediately impressed by Kathacharya Productions in Kathmandu because of their enthusiasm. They also met all the requirements: they could write a script, had a music subscription, and had a motion graphics designer who could help take the video to the next level. It was an opportunity for Kathacharya Productions and Storyhunter to explore a potential longer-term creative partnership. The team delivered an outstanding final video. And when we decided to create our 2022 end-of-the-year video, we turned to Kathacharya to make it happen.

What was the creative concept?

Not many companies have a global reach like ours: Storyhunter freelancers tell high-production stories for impactful brands and media companies from places you’d least expect, like Uzbekistan, Kenya, Vietnam, and Nepal.

We spoke with Kathacharya to come up with the concept and video structure. We decided to feature soundbites and behind-the-scenes footage of shoots from creators in various countries. And we wanted the mood of the video to be fun and uplifting.


What went into the pre-production?

At Storyhunter, we looked through our network for freelancers who created stand-out video stories. We then narrowed down the freelancers we hoped to feature, and Kathacharya reached out to them. As we waited for responses, the team wrote a script emphasizing the keywords we wanted the interviewees to say.

Kathacharya sent the creators the script, questions, and a video production style guide. We asked them to record and send us the answers. But we soon realized we needed to conduct interviews over Zoom to ensure the style was consistent, provide real-time feedback on set composition, build a more personal rapport, and leave space to capture those spontaneous moments.

“It was a nice exchange of experiences:” What it was like making the video

Kathacharya Project Manager Sudin Bajracharya interviewed freelancers via Zoom.

He said getting in touch with the creators was his favorite part of the project. “We reached out to 20 creators for this project, and out of them, we decided to go ahead with nine of them. We were also talking on WhatsApp about how it is in their country and how it is here in Nepal, the situation of storytelling and filmmaking. It was a nice exchange of experiences,” he said.

A screenshot of how Sudin kept track of the production process

How did we bring it all together?

The project was complex and had many moving parts. So, the post-production required a lot of time and file management.

It took a while to get all the footage from the creators across time zones, Sudin Bajracharya, the project manager, told us. In the meantime, Gaurav, an editor and motion graphics designer, prepared all the animations using After Effects and added placeholders for the interviews.

Once freelancers sent their videos, the hard part was stitching together the bites because they all varied in tone, Sudin said.

“George [freelancer] may have a cheery persona, and maybe someone else is more serious. We ended up using most of the scripted parts. We used the unscripted parts for fillers,” he added.

Gaurav chose fast-paced music to match the “energizing” and “hopeful” mood we wanted to achieve. “We chose music that jumps, perfectly lending itself to the format we were going for, which was multiple people explaining their journey in 2022.”

“Apart from that, the interviewees were very important for this video. They are the people who set the tone who dictate what the video is about. And they were very passionate about their work and the Storyhunter community. This is what led the video to become what it is,” he said.

The Kathacharya team uploaded the first version of the video to frame.io so we could provide feedback. I gave notes for version two in person at their office in Kathmandu! (I had planned a trip to Nepal for the holidays).

We started the project in early December and published it on January 5, 2023. When you hire the right production team and work together, it's easy. It was amazing to meet the team in person - they are bursting with creative energy, and on the first day, Sudin took me out for momo and a chilled bottle of Coke, a Nepali rite of passage. There was no better way to close out 2022. Wouldn't you agree?

Momo in Kathmandu