The video production market, like so many others, is totally saturated with competition. We know all too well being in Surrey, just outside of London. So how on earth do you find that needle in the haystack…..i.e. the right video company for you and your precise, specific needs?
We’re going to tell you about the one, single, solitary and most important element that we feel will empower you to find them. The one thing that we feel is utterly essential to let you find that special company, the company that is currently out there and waiting to work with you.
You might be looking around for a change and, if you are, we totally understand what pain you might be feeling.
The good news: most companies are actually pretty good
Thankfully, whilst the market is awash with fantastic, talented, brilliant Directors, Producers, Crew and Editors, like any industry, there are a few companies that sadly don’t deliver the results.
If you’re reading this, and you are experiencing any of the following, then later on, we’ll give you our single most important top tip, as well as a few others, to fast-track your search.
However, are you currently:
- Feeling that your current agency just don’t really ‘get you’. Not fully at least?
- Do they come back to you with their creative approach and then aren’t great at taking your feedback?
- Are they bit “corporate” in their results?
- Do their videos all feel a bit mechanical? Do they lack “something”?
- Do they not really capture the human side to your brand?
- Are they lacking emotion?
- Are they a bit expensive for what you get? Especially when correlated with what you get back?
- Are they even a bit cheap? And does it show in their work?
- Are they a bit chaotic and lacking in good planning and structure?
- Are they simply not very creative?
- …….and, possibly most importantly, do their videos not really connect with your audience? Do you get average feedback and rarely hear comments about the deep, emotional story that the video has captured and how it has helped to inspire perception change in the hearts of the audience?
Thankfully, these pain points are few and far between, and the vast majority of companies that we know ourselves are fantastic. In fact, I genuinely believe that the UK video production industry is probably the best in the world. I really do believe that.
But what if you could find a company that consistently gives you the following results?:
- You find with a company that understands you and your culture and brings it to life in video
- A company that works with you to capture your values on screen
- A company that appreciates you and the work you do
- A company that makes you look great in front of your stakeholders and makes you feel special
- A company that touches you at an emotional level
- A company that makes you feel so good that you simply couldn’t do without them
- A company that actually gets tangible results rather than, in the world of video where ROI is hard to track, giving you little proof that their videos are ‘working’
Transactional vs. transformational video companies:
There are two types of video production company as I see it. Transactional companies and transformational companies.
Transactional companies can lack a bit of heart and soul in their videos
Transactional companies are those who film really well. They edit beautifully. They are great at planning, the shoot goes to plan, everyone is happy, the final result is great, there are lots of whizzy effects and eye candy, and all is good……but there’s just something not outstanding nor exceptional about the final edit. It all feels a little “corporate-video”.
You can’t really fault them for what they’ve done. They’ve done a great job. On a scale of 1 to 10 though, where 10 = “gosh, that is us, that literally feels like our brand, our culture, our personality has been bottled and is right here in the room, not on a screen”…well, does your “transactional” video company get to 10 or are they more of a 7 or 8?
Transactional video companies often use the word “storytelling” in their marketing (because it’s currently a buzz word in the industry) but they don’t really understand how to tell a proper story all that well. Not like Hollywood does.
Again, whilst this all sounds negative, thank goodness most reputable companies aren’t like this.
Company type # 2: Transformational companies that trigger the ‘nucleus accumbens’
The nucleus accumbens is a part of the brain that activates when you are experiencing pleasure and reward, and importantly, it feeds into the Basal Ganglia which is the home for your habits.
But video production and neuroscience don’t belong together, right?
Quite the opposite in fact. As with anything in life, if you understand how to give pleasure to the audience, if you understand how to resonate with them, if you are able to craft careful messages that really have deep connection and meaning, and if your videos deliberately can be part of a structured, bigger campaign, one that leads to behavioural change, then, by planning to activate the nucleus accumbens, your message “gets through” to the right part of the brain. It essentially goes straight to the right place and bypasses all the other white noise that people experience literally every day.
OK, so, I appreciate that it could come across as if I’m using complicated, medical terms to perhaps show off, but I promise I’m not.
There’s actually a really serious point here.
As a certified life and business coach, as well as a live events and video producer, the training I have in what goes on within the brain during a coaching session, is directly applicable to any form of behavioural change, whether you’re using a conference or a video as the vehicle to cascade the message.
Produced correctly, a conference or video can change perceptions, shift opinions, connect people with new ideas and possibilities and start the process of behavioural change. And it all starts with getting through to that elusive nucleus accumbens with the right messages. And that’s where transformation starts and your videos can take off metaphorically speaking.
And that’s why raising awareness of the existence of this part of the brain is fantastic to know. To know that there is a part which responds to pleasure and reward, and how it feeds into the “habit” part of the brain, allows us to understand that video is part of a structured, psychological process, but it all starts with how you plan to capture the message in the first place. Plan poorly, and then hit the record button………and you’re wasting a golden opportunity.
So, this one, single piece of information (which isn’t even the tip referred to at the beginning by the way; that’s coming soon) can change your perception of how to communicate. Now you know that it’s less about what you think the audience needs to hear, and instead, it’s all about crafting a message that will trigger and activate this part of the brain. Because the more you trigger it, the more, over time, the Nucleus Accumbens starts to “re-programme” the Basal Ganglia, which, as we now know, is where habits are kept. This of course is all dependent on the video being part of an action-oriented behavioural change campaign, but that goes beyond the scope of this blog.
So, I promised you the one big secret. What is the one most important element referred to in the title?
Here it is………………..does your video company listen and do they ask great questions!
Does your video company listen? And do they know what questions to ask?
I’ve run conferences before on leadership training, I’ve produced events launching life-changing products, I’ve even created an event where we taught life skills on how to have a proper conversation (which millions of people around the world don’t know how to do particularly well), and each and every time, I give the same advice…….start by listening. So, does your video company listen to you?
When you do listen, I mean properly listen, the other person (i.e. the video company’s client in this context) reveals so, so many deeper levels of information that you can easily miss.
Some highly-experienced people can be the worst listeners
We all know of these people. I know a handful myself – you know the person with a proven track record of success who thinks they know best because of their experience – their way is the best way (according to them anyway).
I’ve also met many video producers who are the same. As video is creative, there is no real right or wrong, so experience can really help a video producer. Clients may often have much less of a frame of reference as to what constitutes good or bad, so the video producer can often be the best person at hand to help the client; all thanks to those years of experience.
Such video producers, with all that experience, can often think they know better than the client regarding what the client wants. They fall into a category of people called “Internally-Referenced” people. Internally-referenced people, like a famous US President by the way, can be prone to not being the best listeners.
But what if those video producers were able to use their incredible skills PLUS go even further into the realms of making a long-term difference at a behavioural level?
But, I appreciate that most video producers aren’t behavioural psychologists so let me still give a big shout-out to all those amazing producers who are out there doing an incredibly challenging job and making this industry as great as it is.
Behavioural change through a single video is hard
Relying upon just one video, on its own, to leave such a legacy and change behaviour is hard and needs a lot of thinking and experience.
But it can be done.
And getting back to listening and asking questions, the video producer who knows how to listen properly and to then, and only then, know what questions to ask, is worth their weight in gold. Listening and asking probing questions is the only way to uncover what it is that we can communicate that will trigger and activate the nucleus accumbens in the brains of the audience.
But how? What sort of questions?
Now I can’t give everything away of course, after all this process is deeply secretive to Mindset, but here are a couple of tips to get going:
- Does your video company spend far more time listening to you than talking?
- Whenever you reveal an emotion in your language, do they pick up on it? For instance, if you’re “frustrated”, let’s say, at the lack of great audience feedback, does your video company find out what it is exactly that is the source of your frustration, or any other emotion for that matter?
- Do they ask probing questions about what your objectives really are and also why those objectives are important to you personally and why meeting those objectives will have an impact on the business? What about how they will impact on you and what your personal objectives are?
- Do you feel that the video company asks you enough questions about the types of personalities in your company? Do they ever ask questions about your culture?
- Do they enquire about any pain points that your audience feels and do they try and find out what it is that is the root cause of them?
- And then, assuming they do ask such great questions, is this all translated into their approach? Do they come back to you with a solution well before anyone goes anywhere near that little red button on the camera called the ‘record’ button?
A Case Study: Bill and Martin
A great example of using the above approach to show you what I mean is with reference to a project we filmed a couple of years ago.
We were briefed to capture the personalities of 2 very special employees within a large corporation, and we were asked to depict just how much their personalities, and who they are, affected the overall team spirit of the company as a whole.
I don’t wish to spoil the video, suffice to say that by using the process above, within 3 weeks of showing the video at the company’s annual PLC conference, the company had employed a further 20 “Bill and Martins” such was the impact of one, single, solitary video piece.
Hope you enjoy 🙂
Listening and asking questions is an art
As a coach, I know the transformational power of asking the right questions, then listening, and then asking more questions based upon what I’ve just heard. The reason why this is, is because we are all totally different so how can you fully understand someone, or a client company, without asking great questions?
And if your video company knows how to do this, they’ll eventually get to the source of what your audience’s pleasure and pain points are and then they can start about crafting how to create a human, engaging, effective piece of work that will cut straight to the nucleus accumbens.
We’d love to talk
I’m hoping that if anything in this blog has activated your curiosity, (and activated your nucleus accumbens by imagining the pleasure you could get with this process above), that perhaps we might be the right company for you, your culture, your brand and your customers. I’d love to think that perhaps you may just have found the needle in the haystack.
Nik (MD of Mindset Comms)