One of the trends in corporate video production has been the increase in production value. This can be attributed to several factors– companies realizing that their brand image is directly tied to quality of their corporate communications, and the advent of new and better tools for production.
Old Days of Corporate Video
Twenty years ago, only large corporations could afford a video department. It could easily take a million dollars to build out a video production facility with a camera and edit room. In Dallas, one corporation dropped over a million dollars in the early nineties to finish out a little studio. One tape deck (like a Sony BetacamSP BVW 75) was $45K new. A camera could easily run $70K. In the nineties, the computer revolution started taking hold (as it had with desktop publishing) and desktop editing was born.
Now, several decades later, you can buy a decent editing station for under $5K and a great camera for that or less. The “video department” is not the huge burden of overhead for companies that it once was.
Sam With a Cam
As this revolution took place, companies realized that Sam in accounting, who liked to mess around a little with iMovie or Windows Video Maker, could put together that corporate video for the meeting. What happened next was that a lot of companies had “home videos” for their corporate image– videos living online, on DVD’s, broadcasted in corporate meetings and conferences. And many times, this lower level of quality led to image perception problems.
Not that Sam was always “home movie” quality– there have been some outstanding work done by home grown video personnel. But that is the exception, not the norm.
Another important thing to mention– we have seen that sometimes, it’s better for the client to go the “Sam, from Accounting, With a Cam” route. It might be something that’s internal, where it needs to look viral, or that it’s just important to get the message out. And that’s fine. Then there’s other times where production value is incredibly important.
Why Does Production Value Matter?
In every piece of communication, every brochure, webpage, facebook company site, perceptions are being crafted for the company’s brand. If you have your CEO talking about how good the product or services are, it can’t be cheesy or amateurish– the viewer associates that amateurishness with the product.
Undoubtably, content is king. Videos go viral that are exactly home videos– done with consumer cameras and made to make you laugh hysterically, or touch your heart to bring tears. But those are for different purpose. So companies need to know what their brand plan is and to make sure all the communications fit into that brand. Production Value matters in sales, it matters in recruitment, it matters in the way consumers feel about the brand.