Crafting a Narrative
When conducting interviews, you never really know what you’re going to get. Even when the answer is great, it may take too long to deliver, or may not make sense in the context of a larger edit. But even in the best scenario, it won’t be as good as it could have been had you written it yourself as a part of a larger narrative.
If you’re hiring a production company to produce marketing content, why should they film a documentary instead? Okay, okay, documentaries can be pretty cool marketing content. (We even have a word for it: Docu-marketing.) But if you’re not specifically looking for that type of content (and most businesses aren’t, or shouldn’t be), there’s no reason you can’t shove words in people’s mouths. That’s what you’d do if we hired an actor, isn’t it?
So instead of wasting everyone’s time and money on long-winded interviews, when over 90% of the footage will never even be used, let’s craft a narrative instead.
Here’s the thing: Interviews take time. Time you’re paying us for. We could spend that time writing interview questions and conducting interviews all day long… or we could craft a video that has solid production value. Rather than waste your budget on hours of footage that will never see the light of day, let’s spend it on professional crew and equipment and craft a piece of marketing content that will serve your business better than staid old footage of talking head.
There are rules!? Yeah there are! But we break them all the time. So they’re more like guidelines. Here’s what you need to know:
Rule #1: Web videos should be about two minutes long and no longer. No one’s attention span is long enough to keep watching any longer. And, fun fact, that’s about how much content that can be produced in one day of filming. So if there’s reason to go over two minutes, we’ll be the first to suggest it (since you’d likely be paying us for more than one production day).
Rule #2: Following the two-minute rule, that leaves around 250 to 450 words to deliver a narrative, depending on speed of delivery. That seems like a lot! But it goes quick. Another way to break down that time is in 6 to 12 statements, or bullet-points.
Rule #3: We can film as many scenes as you like, but keeping to a one-day budget we’ll want to film in no more than two locations with no more than four to six scenes. Depending on the complexity of those scenes, we may recommend less.
Rule #4: Six to twelve statements should not equal six to twelve people. Less is more. We’ll want to film between one and four people to fill a two-minute video. We’ll want to switch to a new scene for each person, so if you’d rather capture more footage that better illustrates a video’s concept, then fewer people on screen will let us do that.
Zudy approached us to create a video that shows how their approach to enterprise app development differs from the competition. We combined big screen cinematography techniques and state-of-the-art equipment, including the RED EPIC-W 8K, and good old-fashioned storytelling to produce a video that speaks to Zudy’s approach and craft.
Regency Mortgage approached us to create a video that shows how their corporate culture and client-oriented approach differs from the competition. We interviewed a number of their staff to that end.