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Video Tells a Meaningful B2B Company Story

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by Michael Premo, Content Strategist

People prefer watching a video to reading text on a screen. We process visual images faster than text—up to 60,000 times faster—and build strong emotional connections through the combination of sight and sound. What this means is that you can tell your company story quickly and in more meaningful ways when you use video.

 

Think about Your Audience

It’s safe to say that a potential client watching a video about your company is interested in your company. They are already aware of your products and services. The purpose of the video is to move them further down the sales funnel. So, when creating your company story, you want to think about common challenges they face and the value you bring.

Too many times, companies make the mistake of focusing on themselves and their services. Not only is this boring, but it also takes the viewer back up the funnel to where they started.

Your audience needs to know what makes you unique. Your services aren’t the only thing that separates you from your competition. Is it your mission? Your company culture? Or both? Video presents stories about your company through creative and original ways that do more than simply capture a viewer’s attention. It motivates them.

 

Bring It Together in a Story

Your audience wants an honest, authentic story, one they can relate to and believe. At this point in their journey, they are looking for someone they can trust. Good storytelling brings all of this information together in a highly engaging and meaningful way. The more emotionally compelling a story is, the more likely your audience will remember it.

 

How to Start

Two emotionally charged stories can start your video. The first being a story about the deeper reasons why your company does what it does. It has to have a strong “human element” to be engaging. Plus, it highlights your mission and purpose. Just remember that it will work only if the story is unique and not profit-driven.

The other one is about helping a client overcome a major challenge. These are highly relatable, which ignite an emotional connection to the challenges they are currently facing. Case studies focusing on particular clients are a great way to showcase this type of story.

What if you’re a start-up? Or, you don’t have compelling stories to tell? Then, you’ll need to be creative and talk about your vision for the future and how you’ll make their lives better. You can personify the problem or create conflict. There are other ways to bring your story to life.

 

Show, Don’t Tell

You have their attention, now what? Video makes your story creative and unique through the combination of images, motion, and sound. The story should come from what your audience wants to know, so stick to the emotions and values you need to communicate. Resist the urge to talk about yourself. Nobody wants to hear a lecture or a cheesy sales pitch.

 

Think about Platform and Pacing

There are many platforms where your video can appear:

  • Website
  • YouTube
  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn

Each one requires different pacing. For example, your website can host a longer video, one that goes beyond two minutes. This requires a slow pace to tell a longer story so you can give an in-depth look at your company. Compare this with an Instagram story or LinkedIn video, which average 30 seconds. With these, you have to get to the point right away and make every second count!

 

Video Production Affects Storytelling

The quality of your video will have an impact on your story and the audience. Good stories have unique settings and compelling speakers. Good stories have seamless transitions, high-quality images, sound, and graphics. You probably don’t have a production team on staff that’s experienced enough to pull all of these together. That’s why you should consider hiring a video production company. Remember, your investment in a professional video will drive more traffic to your website, as well as tell an engaging story.

Pinstripe has helped local and nationally-based businesses with their video production needs. We specialize in discovering their traits—their corporate character—and putting them on display. Our creative team consists of listeners and discoverers that have an innate ability to help you achieve your vision. Contact us to tell us more about your company and the video you envision.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Marketing with Video Content

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Engaging your audience with video content is essential in today’s content rich, image rich environment. It’s also important to note that our workplaces will soon be flooded with true digital natives—people who grew up with smartphones and tablets. These communicate in a seemingly endless array of images and videos on platforms like YouTube, Snapchat, Instagram and using emoji, sometimes without any words at all.

It’s not likely that a professional services or B2B business will ever communicate to its audience without text, but we need to approach marketing from the perspective of an image rich background in order to capture the widest audience. And, when all is said and done, image and video rich content is simply more interesting to digest – we can all agree on that.

Video marketing comes in an array of styles and forms. Below are just a few types of video content that will contribute to a well-rounded video marketing campaign.

 

Video Interviews

Planning is essential when filming video interviews, so it’s recommended to work with a marketing agency to strategize about the goals for these videos, especially the final edited clips and multitude of applications for them. Plus, organizing a media library with your video content can maximize its potential.

You will need a list of questions that garner answers to generally describe your business and some deeper questions to cover the more complex aspects of your business. These will speak to the segment of your audience who is most knowledgeable and deeply engaged. Covering as much ground as possible during these interviews will pay off in the long run. You will spend a day or more of setup and filming, but end up with many options for arranging different interview clips for different purposes.

 

Environmental Video

Also known as “b-roll”, these short action clips are of your employees at work, interacting with clients, product demonstrations and applications in the “real world,” and your office as well as the city in which you are located. These capture the personality and essence of who, what, and where your business is, so plan on brief, dynamic shots that will captivate your audience. These clips can be used for website headers (without sound or music is recommended–it can be annoying to visit a website and have unwanted music blast suddenly), in conjunction with interviews to create more interest (rather than just a talking head), and as brief clips for social media ads or posts.

 

Event Video

These videos are usually a combination of both interview and environmental. For those businesses that have an annual or quarterly event such as corporate sales meetings, trainings, trade shows, workshops, etc, don’t miss the opportunity to capture video and record the event and your interactions. During events, there is usually a lot of interaction between your staff and clients or prospects, your employees collectively, and your products. These are perfect opportunities to capture environmental video of organic interactions with your business. Also consider preparing a list of questions to ask people you encounter—whether they are clients, prospects, or simply people passing by. You may be able to capture video testimonials that are invaluable.

Strategizing about the goals of your video campaign will maximize the use of your time and budget. This will help you create evergreen content that you can repurpose for other aspects of your content marketing. Pinstripe Marketing can create and execute a video content strategy that will enhance the visual content of your business and engage your clients on a deeper level. We’d love to hear from you if you have a project in mind and are interested in learning more.

Photography and Video: Building a Media Library

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Building a media library is to marketing what building a foundation is to a house. Nearly every marketing piece in your repertoire will utilize some asset from your media library. From your social media posts to your brochures and collateral, illustrations, icons, photos and video are at the core of your business, so having a media library is essential.

It can feel like a daunting process to build your media library, but it doesn’t have to be. Take small steps and make sure to stay organized, and you’ll be on your way in no time. Below are a few suggestions to get your media library up and running, whether you’re a large firm or a small company.

  • Take photos at events, product demonstrations, trade shows and any other events – start keeping these in folders with the date and name of the event to stay organized.
  • Hire a photographer or videographer – even small businesses should be able to fit a professional photographer in the budget, as long as you stay organized and know what you want. If you plan the shoot yourself, including making a shot list, organizing talent, and setting a timeline, you can hire the photographer for a half day and get a huge return. If you hire a person or agency that offers both still photography and video, even better. You can capture some b-roll to add to your library for future use.
  • Use stock photography – stock photography can be inexpensive, but still beautiful, so be sure to do some research and find photos that are unique. Before you purchase, keep an eye on competitor and industry websites to be sure you are not pulling from the same stock photo collections as your competition.
  • Find someone on your staff who is passionate about photography and see if they would be willing to take on the media library project, provided their work schedule allows for it. Use your resources when available! There are many hobby photographers who would love to break up their work day a bit with some photo sessions. Just make sure their new assignment isn’t cutting into their productivity.

We have helped many companies, large and small, develop their media libraries. Get in touch for help with building yours!

Spotlight: Shorecrest Preparatory School Video

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Shorecrest Preparatory School is a pretty magical place. When they hired us to create a video to showcase the school, we were excited. We have worked with Shorecrest for years on projects ranging from public relations to ad campaign design, so we are very familiar with their brand, the campus, and the mission of the school. We’ve also created 30 second commercial spots for digital advertising and movie theater pre-roll for the school, which helped us to brainstorm some really good ideas for this special piece.

We wanted to use this video to tell the story of the school and its culture, not just give information about programs, etc. We decided to use a more cinematic approach, with the script reading more like a poem than a brochure. We developed the script first, though we were constantly visualizing corresponding shots that would support the narrative. We started with Shorecrest’s tagline, “Be more.” We thought about what it means to “be more,” especially in the context of the education and opportunities that the school provides. We used Shorecrest’s overarching theme – Choice. Support. Balance. – as a guide for our narrative.

Once the script was complete, we started working on the story board and a detailed shot list, and then it was time to start scheduling the shoots in the classrooms, athletic department, and the outdoor classroom. This was a logistics problem that Shorecrest’s marketing director tackled perfectly. We were able to capture all the footage that we needed, plus some!

Storytelling like this is meant to be evocative. The video is certainly informative in its own way, but we aimed to capture people at a more subconscious level – in other words, we were trying to pull heart strings. In doing so, we leave more of an imprint on people’s minds – when you evoke emotion, the impression is lasting. We think that we achieved this with the Shorecrest video. The hard work, creativity, dedication, and open-mindedness of the school’s culture is truly highlighted in this piece. See for yourself!

Telling stories is one of Pinstripe Marketing’s specialties, especially when it comes to video. Drop us a line if you’re interested in telling your story; whether it’s culture, information, interview, etc, we can help.

Which Type of Video Works for Your Business or Project?

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Video is an important part of advertising, and can be instrumental in informing your customers about many aspects of your business, from your product line to your company culture to education. With so many different types of video, it’s important to assess your goals and decide which type will best help you reach them. Whether it’s a company overview or a series of interviews to demonstrate your expertise, do some serious planning before you commit to production to get the best value.

Some types of video to consider:

  • Company overview – this video is usually a documentary-style video that can include b-roll of your business in action, short interview clips with your employees and/or customers, shots of your company culture, and usually has a music track playing in the background to help evoke an overall feel. Sometimes these can be quite moving, depending on the business. For example, we are working on a video for Shorecrest Preparatory School, and it’s quite beautiful, with a lot of emotive shots of the students and teachers in a passionate learning environment. The video truly evokes the culture of Shorecrest, and you are lucky if you finish watching it without shedding a tear. We also just finished a company culture video for Big Frog Custom T-Shirts – it really demonstrates what the Big Frog Franchise Group is all about and they are excited to use it to capture the hearts of new potential franchisees.
  • Interviews – interview videos can serve several purposes, and are usually less time consuming than a full company overview and can be repurposed and used in other videos like the company overview, case studies, etc. Depending on your goal, interview videos may involve one of your staff answering questions about their expertise, process, or the company culture. You may invite clients to do an interview video for a case study about your company, or do an entire video with client testimonials.
  • Case Studies – case study videos can focus on a particular project that you’ve worked on and may include many elements, from client testimonials to shots of your employees in action. These videos are a great way to demonstrate just how great your business is and how passionate you are about your work. This is an added bonus for your clients – when you post the video you should always tag your client to drive traffic to their site. Case study videos are a great marketing tool on multiple levels for that reason – you are promoting your work and your clients’ work, plus you are giving clients an incentive to hire you – you feature them in your beautiful videos!
  • Video blogs – this is a blanket term that can include some of the other types of videos, especially interview videos, but these can also be somewhat more casual and some companies do these in-house with camera phones or personal video cameras. Video blogs can be anything from weekly or daily updates about new products, company news, or commentary on what’s happening in the industry. The sky is the limit with video blogs, in a way, because they are very specific to the atmosphere of your blog and your industry.
  • Educational videos – educational videos can be created for your staff or your clients. These may be product demos, or instructional videos for training purposes. You may even create several of this type of video to use for your inbound marketing efforts. For example, a videographer may post a short video on how to create simple video blogs outlining the equipment needed, easy-to-use editing programs, and places to find stock music for background and inexpensive stock b-roll if needed. This is a great resource for potential clients, and if they need a more professional video produced in the future, you will probably come to mind.

Videos are great marketing tools – just make sure that if you make the investment, you plan properly and have clear goals in mind. Contact Pinstripe Marketing if you’d like to discuss your video project – we can help you plan and execute the perfect video for your company’s needs.