The Five Phases of Video Production

Posted by Nick Francis
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There's so much noise online it takes more than a smartphone and the click of a recording button to produce video content that stands out in congested web traffic. 300 hours of video are uploaded and over 4 million videos are watched every minute on YouTube. That adds up to an unbelievable 6 billion hours of video that are consumed every day on just one major digital platform.

If you are serious about capitalising on video content to boost awareness, engagement, leads and sales; it’s important that you pay careful attention to all five phases of the video production process. Yes, traditionally there have been three phases - preproduction, production, post-production - but when you consider how important strategy development is at the beginning and distribution is at the end; we prefer to look at them as distinct phases.

SO, wHAT ARE THE 5 PHASES OF VIDEO PRODUCTION?

A full video production service take you from conceptualisation to completion in the following five phases:

Phase 1: Strategic development

  • video marketing strategy
  • content goals
  • brand guidelines

Phase 2: Pre-production - planning and coordination

  • content strategy
  • content goals
  • project scope
  • budget
  • timeline
  • story and script creation
  • talent scouting
  • equipment sourcing
  • location scouting

Phase 3: Production - creative execution

  • set up sound and lighting
  • primary photography
  • B-roll capture
  • voiceover recordings

Phase 4: Post-production - video editing to final product

  • sound mixing
  • visual effects
  • video editing
  • final delivery for distribution

Phase 5: Distribution

  • distribution
  • optimisation

Looking for a video production company in London?

Discuss your project with a producer at Casual Films


PHASE 1: STRATEGIC DEVELOPMENT

Strategic development ensures that the video content communicates the right message to your target audience to maximise reach and impact. It’s important that video content supports your brand’s positioning in the marketplace and resonates with your customers with the end goal being to generate authentic leads, boost sales and get maximum return on your video production investment.


HOW TO DEVELOP A VIDEO MARKETING STRATEGY

A video marketing strategy sets out the plan of action to integrate engaging video content in the overall marketing strategy. Video content is used to build trust and customer rapport, raise awareness, promote a brand, generate leads and boost sales.

There are 8 steps to developing a video marketing strategy for your brand:

Step One: Understand your target audience

The crux here is to understand your video target audience well enough to know what content resonates with them and how they consume video content. In other words, what channels are they more likely to be on and what format do they respond to best.

It’s a good idea to invest in analytics and marketing metrics which measure the effectiveness of video campaigns across various channels, examine what works or doesn’t work, how the digital marketing platforms have evolved and uncover trends and insights that point in a new direction.

Step Two: Establish your video marketing goals

What are you trying to achieve with your video marketing campaign? Is it required to build brand awareness, educate and inform, motivate and inspire, drive traffic to your website or generate authentic sales leads? This determines what you say, how you say it, where you say it and how much money you spend.

A video campaign that is designed with a clear goal in mind will be far more effective than one that isn’t. Video content with a distinctive purpose that’s distributed and optimised effectively will give you a good return on your production investment.

  • What is your emotional goal?

Trust, peace-of-mind and excitement or fear, mistrust and apprehension… this allows you to emotionally engage with your customers. Video content that resonates emotionally with your target audience is the best type of video to produce.

  • What is your physical goal?

What do you want your customer to do? Tell a friend, share the video, open a link to a webpage, register for a webinar, make a call to the company, buy the product… this is known as a “call to action” and is the ultimate goal of any video marketing campaign.

Step Three: Check for brand consistency

It’s very important that your video content compliments your brand strategy. The video message and its creative style, tone and manner needs to be consistent with the brand across all platforms; from print and email to your website and social media channels.

What you say and how you say it in a video must stay true to your brand’s positioning. In other words, the place that the brand occupies in the minds of your customers and how it stands apart from its competitors.

Step Four: Set a realistic video production budget

Don’t overspend or underspend on your video production. What you spend depends on your content goals. Throwing ‘money at it’ won’t necessarily guarantee the video campaign will be a success; at the same time, underwhelming your target audience is a waste of money and a missed opportunity if you don’t get the ‘call to action’ you desire.

Your video budget needs to partner perfectly with your video goals. This goes hand-in-hand with understanding your video consumer; what digital channels you’ll find them on, how they like to be spoken to and how they consume video content. Only then can you decide how much you need to spend to create the type of video you need.

 Step Five: Choose your digital channels

Facebook probably pops up first when you think of video marketing and even though it’s the biggest digital marketing channel in the world, it isn't the only one. You can’t say for sure which digital channel(s) is best for your target audience until you understand them well and how they consume video content.

Choose a digital marketing channel(s) that fits well with your video marketing goals. The four best marketing platforms to consider are:

Your own network

Mining leads from your existing network is a powerful place to start. Send video content to your current database that is relevant and engaging. The ‘call to action’ should get them to click through to your webpage where you can capture their information and your sales team follow up on the lead; or the person makes a phone call to the company, direct to someone waiting to respond to the customer’s enquiry.

Corporate video blogs (vlogs) on websites are highly effective. They allow you to emotionally engage with your viewer and paint a visual picture where written content on webpages can be tedious to consume.

Social media platforms

Top of mind is Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat; whatever suits your content strategy best. Optimise properly to break through the video congestion and grow your video presence organically.

Paid advertising

Paid ads are one way to give your video content a significant boost. This includes Google AdWords and AdSpend. Paid ads is where video distributers pay for their video content to show up on the first page every time a user searches on the relevant keywords.

Content marketing takes time to build and optimise naturally. Paid advertising is the short-cut to super boosting what you hope to achieve in the long run with organic rankings, but it can be expensive in long run.

Step Six: Set up a system to capture leads

Generating leads is the primary goal of content marketing. In this instance, content is broadcast through a video. Consider setting up an email gate because this method of capturing leads follows the content wherever it is shared on various social media platforms.

Basically, gated content means a visitor must provide an email address in order to receive something valuable in exchange. The key is to encourage the viewer to enter an email address as part of the ‘call for action’. Someone who is willing to give you their personal information (name, contact number and/or email) is a genuine lead.

It’s essential to determine the best time and place to use email gates to generate leads. Email gates or any other method of capturing personal information can make viewers suspicious and are sometimes off-putting; chasing your viewers away, rather than engaging with them.

 Step Seven: Distribute and optimise your video content

Videos need to be distributed to the right channels and optimised properly in order to be viewed by the right people and to generate authentic leads. If you understand SEO (search engine optimisation), you know that optimisation is extremely fluid; the search algorithms that Google and YouTube use change constantly. You need to keep up with current optimisation trends to stay ahead of your competitors.

Search optimisation uses tactical methods to drive ‘first page rankings’ on search engines such as Google. Examples include quality content, backlinks, custom thumbnails, captions and popular tags, a compelling ‘call to action’ and relevant keywords in the description and title. The goal is to make your video content search friendly so your target audience can find your brilliantly-made video.

The most important element of video optimisation is understanding the role of titles and meta-descriptions. These incorporate keywords that customers enter into the search bar on Google, Facebook or YouTube to find what they’re looking for. They’re also known as ‘search queries’.

A video transcript is another effective method of boosting your search prospects. It’s where you do the hard work for Google and YouTube by extracting the content which is naturally scattered with keywords that your target market searches on. You stand a better chance of Google and YouTube qualifying and ranking your video content if you alert them to the context of the content.

 Step Eight: Monitor how the marketing strategy performs and adjust as necessary

Keep track on your video’s performance and change any element that is not working as well as it should be. Your video marketing strategy needs to be timely, relevant, memorable and optimised if you want to see a return on your investment in full video production services.

It’s wise to invest time and money in social media analysis, using advanced technology such as Google Analytics and YouTube Analytics. Learn to identify video marketing trends and find out who is watching your video, how they are consuming the content and whether this is translating to lead generation and business profits.

Video-based analytics provide you with valuable information on how long the target audience spends watching your video; in other words, the average viewer’s attention span. Your video may be too short, slow to get to the point or is not engaging. Monitoring your audience’s digital consumption patterns will help you tweak current videos and do a better job at creating new ones through a professional video production agency.


Looking for a video production company in New York?

Discuss your project with a producer at Casual Films


PHASE 2: PRE-PRODUCTION

The pre-production phase sets the groundwork for the production phase. This is when the planning, research and problem-solving happens to ensure the filming process runs smoothly and on time.

The production phase typically deals with:

  • video production brief
  • content goals
  • scope of project
  • creative vision
  • final budget
  • project timeline
  • scheduling
  • storyboard creation
  • script writing
  • interview questions
  • talent scouting
  • casting
  • equipment requirements
  • location scouting
  • site visits
  • scheduling
  • graphic concepts
  • wardrobe planning
  • equipment planning

PHASE 3: PRODUCTION

This is the fun part of video production when all the research and planning comes together to create the perfect video for your target audience. A professional video producer will translate your video content goals into a visual masterpiece.

The production phase typically deals with:

  • setting up sound, lighting and video equipment
  • a-roll footage
  • b-roll footage
  • interviews
  • voiceover recordings
  • supporting graphics

The difference between a-roll and b-roll footage?

A-roll footage is the primary raw footage used to create the final video. It’s an old-fashioned term that was more relevant to big screen and television film-making when raw material was captured on celluloid film.

B-roll footage provides supplementary material that is usually gathered by a separate team. It includes footage from stock libraries that provides supporting imagery and cutaway shots to expand upon the video storyline.

B-roll footage is particularly useful for documentary videos. It’s also used to capture behind-the-scenes footage which is used in a preview videos, when required.


PHASE 4: POST-PRODUCTION

The producer and editor work together in the post-production phase to create their magic. The video production team supports them behind-the-scenes.

The post-production phase typically deals with:

  • music selection
  • sound effects
  • visual effects
  • colour correction
  • audio sweetening
  • supporting graphics
  • interview transcripts
  • video editing

The post-production phase takes the raw footage to ‘first edit’ to be provisionally approved and any changes made; to the final approved copy which is ready to be distributed and optimised.


Looking for a video production company in Los Angeles?

Discuss your project with a producer at Casual Films


PHASE 5: DISTRIBUTION & OPTIMISATION

Distribution and optimisation is essential to get a return on your investment. The research, planning and beautiful filming doesn’t count for anything if your target audience doesn’t find you in the intense clutter of videos on the web.

Today, video content is created for its marketing purposes but more importantly, for its SEO purposes. SEO means search engine optimisation and is the process a company goes through to ensure its website ranks high on the search engines for relevant search words and phrases. The ultimate goal is ‘first page’ ranking on the three biggest search engines: Google, Bing and Yahoo.

Google loves video content. There’s no doubt that videos boost online visibility, drive more traffic to webpages and increase website rankings on search engines. This is why Phase 5 of the video production process is so important.


What is targeted distribution?

Targeted distribution is the task of placing video content where your target audience will find it and consume it. The distribution strategy is a critical element in the video production process and it needs to be strategic and selective.

Thorough research helps you understand what your target audience wants to see, where they want to see it and how they want to see it. Clever distribution puts your video in front of the people who matter.

These are your distribution options:

Your own business resources

Company website

Customer database

Instore/inhouse presentations

Blogs

Corporate marketing material

 

Social media platforms

Facebook

YouTube

Twitter

Instagram

Snapchat

WhatsApp

 

Public relations tactics

Press releases

News sites

Exhibitions

Product launches

WHAT IS OPTIMISATION?

Search engine optimisation (SEO) are the tricks of the trade used to make sure Google notices your online content, approves of it and recommends it to readers. You want your webpage to be on the first page the comes up for a search query and that can only be achieved by producing content that is relevant, engaging and authoritative.

You can pay to rank on the first page (paid adverts using AdWords and AdSense) or you can use professional optimisation techniques to rank organically, in other words by natural progression.

 

HOW TO USE VIDEOS TO BOOST SERP RANKINGS

SERP means Search Engine Results Pages. These are the pages that Google displays in response to a search query. Everyone wants to appear on the first page but it’s not easy. Uploading a video to your webpage does not boost your rankings; you need professional SEO tactics to beat millions of webpages to achieve the hallowed first page ranking.

Videos that achieve high rankings on SERP have the following characteristics:

  • the video content keeps them engaged so they watch the video for longer and don’t ‘bounce’ to the next video
  • the viewer acts on the ‘call to action’ and ‘clicks through’ to the website
  • viewers share it which tells Google it is relevant and useful
  • viewers link it to another webpage which tells Google it is authoritative content

Looking for a video production company in San Francisco?

Discuss your project with a producer at Casual Films


IN SUMMARY

We hope that this guide has shown you that there is a bit more to the video production process than you might have initially thought. That said - it really isn't as complicated as some companies would have you believe - particularly if you have a video production company at your side who knows what they're talking about. The web is heavily congested with video content and it’s only going to get worse, which is why the strategy development phase in the beginning and the distribution and optimisation phase at the end will only continue to grow in importance.

Don't be daunted by the video production process - employ the services of a professional film production company in New York or wherever you are based. Starting off on the right foot and ending at the right place will save you time and money and ensure you get a good return on your investment.

Casual Films is a full-service video production agency that partners with your business to place the best video in front of the people that need to see it.  Whatever you're trying to achieve, we'd like you to think of Casual Films as guardians of your video marketing strategy, making sure that your video project achieves exactly what you need it to. 


Whatever you're trying to achieve take a moment to consult our easy to follow guide to writing briefs which will make your video more engaging, memorable and ultimately effective.

Topics: Production process, Being a better commissioner

How to increase views on social...

Posted by Exec Producer Arthur Briggs
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You've produced what is without doubt a stunningly excellent video. You're pleased with it, your colleagues are pleased with it and even your boss thinks it's good. All of that obviously doesn't hurt but it's not really going to move the needle for you. In order for that to happen you need to make sure that the right people see it. Chances are like most of the world's population they'll be hanging out on social media. How do you maximise the number of views you get on there though. Here, London Exec Producer Arthur Briggs shares some of his thoughts...

Ever wondered how to increase video views on your social media channels? How to get more click throughs, video views and likes? Well here are a few insights we have picked up from various social media campaigns.

 

  • Think about the viewer journey. It’s all about touch points, if your end goal is to drive sales of product your audience aren’t just going to view a post on Instagram and immediately buy they need to be peppered with content so that by the end of their week they can’t think of anything but your product. Atomise or reversion your content and stretch it as far as you can!
  • Don’t just make a single 30 second version. So many client make the mistake of thinking of the long form 2-minute video the main goal. I’m sorry to say this but your audience are much more likely to see your 10, 15, 30-second video than your full length one. Therefore consider what you want to say, make it different to your longer video it should have its own creative and personality.
  • Learn the definition of the word entice, you don’t need to tell your audience everything about your event, product, company etc. You just need to entice them, put yourself in their shoes and ask yourself what do I need to know at this stage of the ‘viewer journey’ and how do I communicate this as simply as possible.

Arthur led the production on our work for Breast Cancer Now. It was one of the most stunningly effective campaigns we have ever run.

  • Find out where your audience is. A good social media campaign is an experiment, it evolves and grows as the campaign grows. Don’t set every stage in stone before you start because until you do you have no idea what will happen. You might have a huge following on Facebook but actually your Instagram followers are much more active, you might want to speak to people on LinkedIn but they’re more likely to listen on twitter. Adapt and learn!

Whatever you're trying to achieve with video our team of experienced producers are standing by to help you get there. Drop us an email or leave some details here and one of them will be happy to give you a call back to discuss your requirements.

Topics: Attract and retain the best candidates, Increase brand awareness and appeal, Being a better commissioner, How-to, Content Strategy

The Better Video Podcast: Creating an Employer Brand Content Channel

Posted by Nick Francis
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Denise Feldman, Director, Content Marketing for Employer Brand and Communication at Marriott International joins Nick to discuss: 

  • The first steps to build a content channel
  • How constraints lead to creativity
  • Using iteration to find content that works
  • Measuring success
  • How to make content that really works
  • How different types of content complement each other
  • How do you get work seen by the right people
  • The most important lesson Denise has learnt

And much much else besides...

The Films
In the order they're discussed:


1. Marriott Campaign Overview

 


2. How to Apply for a Job at Marriott

 


3. Living Our Core Values - Sheila



Register to take part in future interviews here.

You can watch the video recording of the conversation.

About Denise
Denise is a marketing and employer brand professional, with more than 25 years' experience developing insight-based marketing and communications to attract, engage, and retain top talent for Fortune 500 companies.

Her career includes a variety of roles developing employer brand strategies and marketing for global hospitality leader Marriott International. Currently, Denise leads Marriott’s employment content development and marketing team, creating content that inspires job seekers and associates to engage with Marriott, and share the company story and people-first culture. She knows Marriott associates are the company’s best brand ambassadors. And they’re eager to share their stories – through video, she gives them the opportunity.

About Casual
Casual Films’ clients choose us because we employ remarkably good staff, who are extremely competent and a pleasure to work with. Our proprietary production method has been honed over nearly 10,000 films for major brands including RedBull, Adobe, IBM, Rolls-Royce, Autodesk, Facebook and Marriott and many others. We handle all aspects of the process from consultancy to filming, animation to distribution. We have studios in London, New York, LA and San Francisco, and a global network of trusted filmmakers ready to go.

Please get in touch - we'd love to talk to you.

The New Fire: Harness the Power of Video for Your Business

Check out Nick's book here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1912009048

Topics: Attract and retain the best candidates, Being a better commissioner, How-to, Content Strategy, Brands as broadcasters, Culture & Values, Case Study

Webinar: Bringing your employer brand to life

Posted by Nick Francis
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For the second of our Better Video Power Hour discussions Nick was joined by GE Healthcare's Global Employer Brand Lead, Daniel Perkins to talk employer brand, recruitment marketing, video and more.

Dan has 15+ years experience working in the industry, including leading the global employer brand team at Rolls-Royce. Having started out in account management, he has a keen eye for detail in the creative process and was able to share lots of insights on how to get great work made. 

Rolls Royce - Jimmy C - Stylised

Rolls-Royce: Jimmy C paints Charles and Henry

Dan explained the sign-off process for a campaign based on a graffiti painting of the company founders. By any yardstick, this was a fairly creative way of promoting the 100 year old brand.

Dan had seen Jimmy C's work (most famous for his mural of David Bowie in Brixton, South London) and felt that it would make an eye-catching centrepiece to promote the addition of Art to the traditional STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Maths) framework.

Dan made his own simple promo film (we could have helped you with that, Dan) and took it to the CEO - who he was able to enthuse enough to get it signed off. Sometimes, it helps to take an unconventional approach to get the work you really want to make made.

We also covered:

  • What is an employer brand and why is it important?
  • How to get creative ideas made within a large corporate?
  • Why use video?
  • How to get your videos seen?
  • Why is Inclusion and Diversity so important?
  • the most important lesson Dan has learnt?
  • Who is doing it really well?

If you missed it, don't worry you can watch the recording right here. Keep an eye out for the next webinar on October 19th! Details to follow.

Watch the replay here:

GE Healthcare Employer Brand to Life 3 shotClick on the above image to watch the replay


If you have a project that you would like to discuss, please drop us a note, an email or a call. Our experienced producers are ready help make your next project the best ever.

If you are keen to kick your project off on the right foot the best thing to do is to get your brief exactly right. You can download our guide to doing that right here.

 

Topics: Attract and retain the best candidates, Being a better commissioner, How-to, Purpose driven video, Content Strategy

Promoting diversity and inclusion with video? You should read this...

Posted by Nick Francis
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Homogeneity is never a great thing - unless you’re a pint of milk – in which case you’ve probably got other things to worry about other than this blog post. Diversity brings strength; differing viewpoints, ideas and experiences. Being different but all the same is one of the things that makes the world the place that it is. Variety is the spice of life, as they say.

We get to produce films for all sorts of different reasons at Casual. Some of the ones that we’re most proud of are the ones which help to increase tolerance and understanding, making life tangibly better for those who don't fit the stereotype of normality – whatever that is. Fair enough, some of the greatest crimes against music have been committed in the name of diversity. “Ebony and Ivory”, while noble in aim, is so terrible that Sir Paul deserves to have his plaudits from the Beatles expunged from the ledger. Stevie Wonder frankly should have known better too.

Anyway… we’ve pulled together some of our favourite Diversity and Inclusion projects to inspire you to get started:

Rolls-Royce - live action/animated profiles

Rolls Royce - I&D Kaz (1)

Celebrating our People - Kaz's Story

This series of films celebrate all the different people and backgrounds that comprise the staff at Rolls-Royce. They're relatively simple treatments, with animation and additional footage adding colour and depth, but that doesn't stop them from being really effective. They're a great example of how video can be used to bring intangible concepts like diversity and tolerance to life.

This project was initially kicked off by Global Employer Brand Manager, Dan Perkins. If you want to learn more about diversity, inclusion, internal engagement and employer brand at Rolls-Royce, check out Nick's conversation with him here.

Rolls Royce - I&D Shaid (1)

Celebrating our People - Shaid's Story

 


Action Sustainability - live action humour

Action_Sustainability_Language (1)

Language!

Films with worthy aims don’t have to be worthy in nature. Sometimes a little humour doesn’t go amiss, as with these films, highlighting bullying and wellbeing on construction sites. They were shown at the beginning of a discussion amongst employees. They're a good example of creative designed to engage and educate a very specific audience.

Action Sustainability - Well-Being (1)

Well-Being


Standard Bank - animation

Standard Bank - Conflicts of Interest

Conflicts of Interest

OK, so this animation was technically produced to help employees to understand potential Conflicts of Interest at Standard Bank. This one focuses on an important part of inclusivity - namely, treat your colleagues as you would like them to treat you. It shows how damaging simple thoughtlessness can be and encourages viewers to think a little more about how their actions affect others. The animation is kind of great too.


Vodafone - set piece discussion/visual metaphor set-up

Vodafone - LGBT+ Empowered

LGBT+ Empowered

Vodafone has set the goal of being the number one employer for women and LGBTQ+ in the markets in which they operate. Over the years, we have made a number of D&I films with them, most of which we've shared in this blog. For this film we asked Vodafone employees to discuss some of the challenges around being a LGBTQ+ person in the workplace. The production is relatively simple, with a selection of interviewees talking around a table. We pulled out a number of key facts to help underline the points being made.

Vodafone - Equal in Work

Equal in Work

This film is part of the same campaign. The treatment does a good job of making the challenges faced by LGBTQ+ individuals in the workplace really tangible. There is also the neat visual metaphorical pun of the burden they shoulder.

To learn more about Vodafone, you can listen to Olly and Nick's conversation with Global head of Learning, Catalina Schveninger here.


 

Whatever you're trying to achieve with your video project, the most important step you take is the first one. Get off on the right foot with our no nonsense guide to writing a really effective brief. You can download it here.

If you would like to discuss a project with one of our team of experienced producers - no salespeople - please drop us a line here. We look forward to helping you make your next project the best yet.

 

Topics: Attract and retain the best candidates, Train and develop staff, Increase brand awareness and appeal, Being a better commissioner, Purpose driven video

Five videos to inspire your tech brand / start-up to the next level

Posted by Nick Francis
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So, obviously your company is going to change the world - changing people's lives in every corner of the globe. The problem is that they don’t know that... yet.

Video brings your company and your data alive, helping to share your ideas, attract customers and even secure your next round of finance. Video has an amazing ability to capture the essence of what you are doing and share it in a compelling way that will make people sit up, notice and remember you after you have left the room.

This is one of the reasons we have produced so many videos for tech businesses. You might be thinking that a video could help you and that's great. Here are five examples to get your creative juices flowing. Enjoy...

1. Verve Street Team

Verve - Street Team US

 

We love animation because of its ability to illustrate processes in a clear and engaging manner. They also allow you to bring your brand colour palate to life. This film for influencer platform Verve makes a really great job of this. There are other benefits to animation like this too – once you have the illustrated assets you can use them in other productions, you may also choose to use them in other marketing materials too. Animation also allows you to show functionality which is either in development or is difficult to film.


2. Moveworks

Moveworks - Brand Video

 

We love this brand film we recently completed for Moveworks with our friends at Emotive Brand. It’s got energy and more than a little verve. The animated captions do a great job of illustrating the problem and solution all the while driven by the sound track which conveys the no nonsense approach of the platform.


3. Lattice Semiconductor

Lattice Semiconductors

 

Maybe you don't want an illustrated animation but your product is still difficult to film. That’s cool – that’s where using stock video can really help. This film for Lattice Semiconductor was relatively simple to produce but that doesn't stop it from being extremely effective for explaining exactly what the business does.


4. Glint

Glint - Testimonials 04

 

It can be really useful to enrol the help of an expert to build trust with the audience. Interview led/talking head remain one of the most effective and cost efficient ways to get your message across. Here, the interviewee explains the product in a simple and easy to follow interview. When combined with the overlaid footage of people using it, it makes for a very strong product promo film.


5. Pavegen - Crowd Funding

Pavegen CrowdCube 2019-1

 

Sometimes you might need to wrap it all together in a package to persuade people to invest in your idea. We made just such a film for smart cities firm Pavegen. Their innovative technology captures the energy produced by pedestrian footsteps and turns it into energy - approximately 5 watts per footstep!

This video featured on their CrowdCube funding page and helped them to smash their original target of £950,000 with a total fundraise of over £2.6 million! We wouldn't be so crass as to say that our film was the reason for this success... but it probably didn't hurt. 


So there you go – five examples of ways that you can bring your tech business to life with video. We’d love to talk to you about how video can help you. Drop us a note, or send us an email, and one of our experienced producers will be happy to help you find just the right idea for you and your budget.

Topics: Increase brand awareness and appeal, Boost sales and encourage donations, Being a better commissioner, Content Strategy

Webinar: How to get great videos made with Vodafone

Posted by Nick Francis
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We're extremely grateful to Vodafone's Global Head of Learning, Catalina Schveninger who was kind enough to share her time and ideas with us in the first of our Better Video Power Hour Webinars. We managed to cover a wide range of thoughts and ideas in just 40 short minutes so there's lots in there for commissioners and producers to benefit from. 

Catalina started out in HR in 2002 working for GE. Since then she has worked in a variety of international roles, including T Mobile in the Netherlands. She joined Vodafone in 2014 as their Global Head of Resourcing and Employer Brand. Over the year she has commissioned a wide variety of content projects and so is well placed to share how to get really effective work made. You can watch the recording of the webinar here.

Vodafone - Hero

Vodafone - Youth Hero Film

This is one of the films that we discussed with Catalina - an attraction piece for younger potential employees. She was at pains to say that if your finance department don't like the content you're producing to attract a young audience to find out more, the chances are it's about right. She shared how you can build support to help to get the content that needs to be made made. Given the amount of noise in the online environment, making content which doesn't differentiate is not an option.

Some of the questions we covered include:

  • Why use video?
  • How to get creative ideas made within a large corporate?
  • Who is doing it really well?
  • How to get your videos seen?
  • The importance of purpose in internal engagement?

If you missed it, don't worry you can watch the recording right here. We will also hold another one on the 18th September (exact time TBC) on how to get the most from your existing videos/assets. Special guest to be announced.

Vodafone Attract and Recruit Casual Films 2Click on the image above to watch the recording


If you have a project that you would like to discuss, please drop us a note, an email or a call. Our experienced producers are ready help make your next project the best ever.

If you are keen to kick your project off on the right foot the best thing to do is to get your brief exactly right. You can download our guide to doing that right here.

Topics: Attract and retain the best candidates, Train and develop staff, Production process, Being a better commissioner, How-to

The value of purpose in recruitment and engagement video

Posted by Nick Francis
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In our blog on Building Trust in the Era of Fake News, we discussed the value of purpose in all of your communications. Here we take a moment to look at why purpose is important, particularly for recruitment and internal engagement.

Vodafone - Equal in Work

Vodafone: Equal in Work

Your business' purpose or 'why' is an extremely useful resource when looking for content to broadcast or campaigns to run. This doesn’t mean that all the content you create should suddenly be about charitable causes or that it should be about ‘do-gooding’. It also doesn’t mean that all your content needs to be about your corporate purpose. It means that all the content that you create should have a tangential relevance to your ‘Why?’ as a business. This will provide an underlying coherence to your content at the same time as reinforcing your brand identity. It is a step towards your purpose being about actions, rather than just words.

While purpose is extremely valuable to corporate communicators, it must be ingrained in your way of doing business. It is not enough to simply talk about it: it must become part of your DNA. Your customers and employees will thank you for it, as will your shareholders in due course, so everyone ends up happy.

Purpose and the Zuckerberg generation

Purpose has become particularly important, given the evolutions in employment patterns in the current century. Speak to most employers, and they will complain that today’s youthful workforce has become less loyal and more flighty, but the facts don’t entirely bear this out. According to LinkedIn, millennials – those born between 1982 and 2000 (and among the 500 million who use the platform) – change job four times on average in their first ten years in the workplace. There is disagreement over whether this represents a significant departure from previous generations. A US Bureau of Labor Statistics study of the baby-boomer generation found that they had held an average of 11.7 jobs between the ages of 18 and 48. This is certainly more than the baby boomers’ grandparents would have had at the turn of the 20th century.

What has happened, without question, is a shift in what the workforce want from a job. Millennials have seen their contemporaries overturn convention and earn billions as the creators of global technology brands. From Ed Sheeran and Justin Bieber to Malala Yousafzai, they have seen how a compelling story can pluck anyone from obscurity and plaster them across the global stage. They mainline videos that show them what is happening in the world – their world – and how they can and must play a role in shaping it. ‘Shape the world’ is what they plan to do.

Young people naturally find it easier to pick up new things (which is just as well). This has meant that they have been disproportionately empowered by the Technological Revolution. This is upending traditional power structures. They know they have this power, and want to know what the brands they interact with – as their suppliers, employers and broadcasters – will do for them. Young people no longer live to work, they work to live. Work is something that the modern employee does as a part of their life. They expect to live the life of their choosing, which means that all employment is viewed through a ‘What’s in it for me?’ prism. Each job has to be a stepping stone or stamp to their career passport, enhancing their skills and experience to enable the next leap onwards.

Millennials have never known a world not negatively affected by human impact. Climate change, the ‘plastification’ of the oceans, mass extinction and social inequality all play on their minds. They want the businesses that they have a relationship with to be part of the solution to these problems. This explains why business purpose is so specifically important to them, particularly when choosing an employer.

They believe that business can be a genuine force for good in the world. Of the 7,900 young people surveyed as part of the Deloitte Global Millennial Survey 2017, 76% view ‘business’ positively and believe that it has a positive influence on society. This rose to 89% among those considered ‘hyperconnected millennials’; i.e. those identified as being highly digitally connected compared to the average in their own countries.

"Nine out of ten of the most influential millennials believe that business has

a positive influence on society."

As the guardians of business, you should seize this opportunity and build on it.

Why should this matter to you?

This matters because the millennials are becoming the most powerful generation in history. They are the largest generation (92 million in the US), surpassing the baby boomers (77 million US), and are entering the workplace and their prime earning/spending years. By 2025 they will make up 75% of the global workforce. They already control US$2.7 trillion in annual expenditure. In the West, over time, they will inherit the wealth of their baby-boomer parents, much of which has been protected and built by final-salary pensions and significant real-estate-asset inflation. They are the future of business and our planet.

Young people want purpose, belonging and ownership of the brands they interact with – your brand. They want to take part. They have grown up surrounded by social media and technology in the post- 9/11 world. Having a purpose to work towards makes them more-engaged employees, more-loyal customers and more-active advocates for your brand. They want you to be part of the solution, and they want you to be the enabler.

For employees, the ability to take part in charitable causes at work leads to an increase in loyalty. Deloittes’ aforementioned survey found that of the 54% of millennials who were provided with the opportunity to contribute to good causes or charities, 35% stayed in their job for 5 years or more (vs 24% without the opportunity). They were also more positive about the role of business in the world and optimistic about the social situation generally.

It’s not just employee engagement that makes this a good area for your business to get involved in. There’s also the direct-profit motive. Around 89% of millennial consumers have said there is a strong likelihood they would buy from companies that support solutions to particular social issues, and 91% said that this fact would increase their trust in the business. This would explain why market-research firm Nielsen identified that, in the financial year 2015, sales of consumer goods from brands with a demonstrated commitment to sustainability grew more than 4% globally, while those without grew less than 1%.

 

Vodafone - Belonging

 

 Vodafone: Belonging

How can this work for you?

As we saw in the Building Trust blog, it is essential that you don't just talk the talk. It is essential that you walk the walk. Take the work that Vodafone have been doing on promoting themselves as the number one employer for women and LGBT+ people. First they have to take the steps in that direction and then tell the world about it - in that order. Of course there will always be a degree the marketing driving the reality, but tangible steps towards the new reality have to come first. The great thing about this type of film is that it makes for really powerful, engaging outputs. Ideal for recruitment and staff engagement.


Whatever you're making videos about it's essential to make them the right length to get your message across. We've pulled together everything you need to know, platform by platform, to help you with that.

Check it out here.

Topics: Attract and retain the best candidates, Being a better commissioner, How-to, Purpose driven video

The Better Video Power Hour with Vodafone's Catalina Schveninger

Posted by Nick Francis
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Make your next video the best yet webinar

This might sounds a little obvious (not to mention cheesy) but we are pretty passionate about making really really great films at Casual Films. Nothing makes us happier than watching a fine filmic filly leave the Casual stable ready to hit the social media or intranet racetrack at a gallop. It makes us sad too when we see projects that don't go quite as well as they should and the production vet needs to get involved. I'll give that analogy a rest now - put it out to pasture if you like - (sorry).

Anyway, over the years we're made around 10,000 videos of all different sizes for every type of purpose and for every type of client. That has lead us to develop our very own exacting methodology for making videos that work. We've wanted to share this process for some time and we felt that the best format for this was through our own version of live TV - a webinar!

Webinar video_6

 

 

MAKE A DATE: 11th JULY 2019 - 17:00CET / 16:00BST / 11:00EDT / 08:00PDT

I (Nick) am going to be joined by Casual UK's Managing Director and production powerhouse Oliver Atkinson. Over the space of 50 short minutes we're going to share our step-by-step process for making better quality videos in less time and for less money.

Our Extra Special Guest

Catalina

We're extremely excited to announce Catalina Schveninger, Global Head of Learning at Vodafone as our special guest. Catalina is now responsible for the development of the company's global team of over 110,000 people - quite a remit - so we're extremely happy that she is making the time in her schedule to share her thoughts with us. 

Catalina was previously Global Head of Employer Brand at Vodafone having joined following time as HR Director of T Mobile in The Netherlands. She began her international HR career in 2002 as a member of the Human Resources Leadership Program at GE and held different roles, including the HR Director of GE’s Security EMEA division. 

A mother of 2, Catalina is a passionate advocate for the attraction and development of women in organisations and an avid learner of all things AI and neuroscience. These interests are reflected in a number of the projects that we have produced together including this one promoting belonging at Vodafone:

Vodafone - Belonging

Vodafone - Belonging

One of the reasons we're really pleased that Catalina is going to be able to join us is the fact that she will be able to give the commissioner's angle to the conversation. We are going to use a global employer branding project that we did with her as the backdrop for the learnings that we want to share. You can see one of these films here:

Vodafone - Digital Ninja (1)

Vodafone - "The Future is Exciting, Ready?" - Digital Ninjas employer brand

 

We will be holding a live Q&A at the end of the session so please come armed with anything that you want to ask. We will do our best to get to them. Also - please share the link with anyone else you think might find the session useful.

This is the webinar for you if...

  • You've commissioned video but you feel it's been too expensive, time consuming and ultimately ineffective in the past.
  • You want to understand the simple techniques that the world’s best communicators use to land their message with video.
  • You want to know how global telecoms company Vodafone uses video to land a global brand launch with their 110,000+ staff.
  • You want to understand where most people go wrong and how to avoid expensive, time consuming pitfalls.

 

We look forward to seeing you there.

Topics: Being a better commissioner, How-to, News, Content Strategy, Culture & Values

Five branded content examples to make you want to shakedown the CFO

Posted by Nick Francis
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One of the most exciting developments in corporate/brand video production over the last ten years has been the growth in content which is very light touch on branding or marketing messages. As audiences have become more empowered to choose how they spend their time online brands have looked to align themselves with the types of content which their audiences go out of their way to find and watch.

This has led to some really cool, very watchable examples. Because we really love a list here we thought we’d pull together five of our favs to whet your appetites for the opportunities that are available. As Red Bull showed with their Stratos Jump even the sky isn’t the limit when it comes to this stuff…

Star Alliance – Connecting Cultures

WSJ STAR ALLIANCE TRAILER

Jobs don’t get much more desirable than being an actual travel journalist. Star Alliance and Wall St Journal tasked Robert Reid with going to six of the destinations serviced by their airlines around the world. The challenge was for him to have an adventure in each which went beyond the standard experience that visitors to those locations usually enjoy. Cue Muay Thai kick boxing in Bangkok, racing with huskies in Canada and performing live at the Native American Gathering of Nations. Beautifully shot, dynamic and brilliantly presented by Robert, these are a gem.

WSJ - StarAlliance USA

Robert Reid drums at the Gathering of Nations in New Mexico.

 

Allianz – #CarStories ‘Safari’

Allianz - Hamers Safari-1

How can branded content work for an insurance company? Well, armed with the insight that by providing car insurance, Allianz facilitate the huge amount of family life experience which is lived in the family car, we set about creating a series of videos for social which illustrated what that means. The short, honest portrayals were a massive hit and generated huge engagement on Facebook, where their short length made them easily consumable and sharable.

“The YouTube view completion rate was 85%!

Which was so high that the YouTube team got in touch with

us to find out how we did it.”

In order to be real the production team set up a fixed rig of cameras in each car and then let the families get on with it while the production was monitored from a car behind. The director was able to communicate with an ear piece in one of the adult’s ears to keep them on track.

 

Adobe – Jonathan Adler

Adobe - Jonathan Adler Teaser

Adobe have created a wide range of really lovely content for their Create channel – which is well worth checking out. We really like this video because Jonathan’s character comes across to clearly and amusingly. This goes to show that if you can find a great interviewee, the ‘talking head’ and b-roll format can be extremely effective.

Adobe - Sharm

We also recently delivered this film which features London graphic artist Sharm Murugiah. Again, thanks to Sharm's stunning work and some overlaid graphics, the film looks kind of delish.

 

Glenmorangie – Evolution of Craft

Glenmorangie - Evolution of Craft (1)

 

Prestige whisky brand Glenmorangie wanted to illustrate the craft that goes into making their Scotch. What better way of doing that than getting celebrity chef Marcus Samuelsson to take a trip to the distillery and see the process for himself. His presentation and genuine passion for the product really shine through.

Upworthy – Acting Stereotypes

Upworthy - Acting Sterotypes

Sometimes branded content can be about something that really matters. This film for Upworthy excellently illustrates the challenges of racial stereotyping in one of its most blatant forms - the way non-white actors are asked to respond to casting and direction. A hard hitting point made powerfully and all the more effectively thanks to the tiny bit of humour added by the actors at the offensive bizarreness of the situation.


Whatever you're trying to create, getting the brief just right gets you off to the very best start. You can download our free guide to writing a really effective brief right here.

 

Topics: Increase brand awareness and appeal, Being a better commissioner, Purpose driven video, Content Strategy, Brands as broadcasters

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