Oh god we have to make videos now? If your company is stuck for ideas about what to produce contact filmstretch here or read on…
The popularity of video on the web has changed the game for corporate video, old school vids full of fluff and tired cliches that offer no real information or interest (and pretty much zero entertainment) just won’t cut it any more.
Most businesses are beginning to realise that they need video content for sharing on websites and social media but many get stuck wondering what should be featured in corporate video. Young funky businesses are cleaning up with web marketing by having something to say, not being scared of showing their human side, and by creating both irreverent and humorous communications AND polished earnest video that conveys how trustable and professional their company is.
So what’s the secret?
You do have stories to tell about your company, your lives, your products or services that are far from boring. First believe that. Then begin to think about what could be interesting, informative, entertaining, kooky, or useful that your company, people, environment, products, or services can offer.
People love stories, so ask what stories you can tell, and people love seeing people asked questions or put in situations that elicit an honest reaction. Polish comes over as flat and lifeless, whereas genuine human responses build trust and create interest. You don’t have to be funny, but a little wry humour and banter can really lift video.
Here are some ideas to get you started…
Your Company Story
Get everyone to tell the company story. Interview a range of staff to get different perspectives. You’ll find out how well everyone knows the company story (or not), and you will find out things you didn’t know. Interview the cleaner and the office dog not just the execs. Then share the gems!
Hopes and challenges
When you begin a project or venture shoot video of what everyone’s hopes are for it’s success and what the challenges are that they may be facing. When the project is up and running or concluded ask similar questions, and ask about unexpected developments and surprises. Did it turn out as expected?
Find the funny
Ask around and find those stories about the funniest things that have happened in the office, with clients, at meetings and in general. Pick a few employees to tell the story of what happened on camera, interview people individually and in threes (that can get some banter going). Be cheeky, ask them what they think other staff might think or say about the incident. If you are all game, recreate what happened in a dramatisation.
One on one interviews with people across your organisation that ask them what they love about their job, the company, the environment, other staff, customers. It’s great to get some ‘It’s the people’ answers on camera but ask about specifics of people’s jobs, and what makes them proud about what they do, what makes their job great, what makes them happy to be them, doing the job they do and living the life they live. You can get some great snippets from allowing people to wander into talking about hobbies and out of work interests. These may not seem relevant to your company but these thing make your people seem more human and likeable.
A day in the life
Pick your most interesting and camera friendly employees and do a day in the life of their job. Follow them everywhere! Be specific about what you’re working on as a company and the challenge they are involved with. Start with them at home and end with them at home. Make sure they are narrating what they are doing as they go along. Encourage them to make mistakes, get frustrated, laugh, be human, rather than just trying to look like a model employee.
How great are our staff?
Any and every time one of your staff wins an award, achieves something amazing or mundane interview them about it. Then interview others around them and ask why they feel that person deserves the win.
It can be useful to do one to one interviews with staff asking them to describe in detail all the details of what they do and how it fits into the larger picture. These vids can be gold for recruiting and posting with job ads when similar positions need filling.
Conferences & Events
Never let an event or conference that you host or are involved with go by without video! A key question is about the future here – ‘Where are we going, and why?’ There is learning for viewers here, really useful information available to record from speakers and delegates. There is excitement and a sense of momentum, celebration and achievement that can be conveyed from recording these key events on video. Make sure you produce a short summary video of the event with key themes for those who didn’t attend so they can catch up.
Are you being served?
If your focus is services this is the crucial question your question needs to ask, are potential clients being well served by their existing providers. Then you need to showcase how your services can serve them better, differently – or perhaps show how your services are needed by people who don’t know they need you. Interviewing clients about their experience of your services or doing vox pops asking people about their existing service provider and explaining or showing them on camera how amazing your services are in comparison creates a lot of drama and some laughs.
What’s your problem?
Ask people on the street or at an event how they would solve the problem your product or service solves. Then the video can show how your product or service solves that problem for people.
In the making
Showing how products are made step by step can be fascinating for customers to watch, you can keep product secrets but offer an overview of the process if you need to. Similarly the story of how you developed your services places your offering as a common sense solution to a gap in the market or a common issue.
How to use it
Get a customer who loves your product to demonstrate how to use it and talk about what is so great about it. Or get a technical expert to explain the best way to use what you are offering.
The world we operate in
Don’t always focus on your product or service, offer useful tips and information about the sphere you are placed in, and place your company and services/product in a larger perspective. Give away free useful information that is not directly relevant and you name will become seen as a ‘player’ in that arena. For example if you make glasses review wines, using your glasses of course.
Using products inappropriately for humour, or putting your staff or company in ridiculously incongruous situations can get attention! Asking inappropriate questions to get interesting reactions (rather than true answers) can create some fabulous ‘out-take’ nuggets of video.
Tough at the top
Get your execs to tell stories about their highs and lows, greatest success and biggest failure. Ask what they learned from both. Their wisdom and leadership will engage viewers interest.
Ask employees to tell stories about their favourite customers, and their most crazy ones (kindly of course). Ask customers on camera what they feel your secret of success is, or why they chose you over the competition.
Get people to try your product or service and a competitor’s on camera to get their reaction.
There are many ideas you and your people can come up with once you begin to think a little out of the box with your video.
Here at filmstretch a big part of the production process is about brainstorming creatively to help clients stretch beyond platitudes towards original stories and showcasing people. We know that it’s the people on the screen and the tale being told that will hold people’s interest.
For help with your corporate video contact filmstretch here.