Video Artisan – more than just Marketing Films

SliceStoppa marketing films title
Its not just marketing films now from Video Artisan
SliceStoppa box design
SliceStoppa box design

We’ve recently launched a series of short marketing films produced for SliceStoppa – but this project extended way beyond our usual sphere of film and video production. SliceStoppa’s Managing Director, Ian Joyce and fellow product designer, Gary Cant, approached us whilst the product was still in the design stage and engaged us to create the SliceStoppa logo, packaging, business stationery, photography and, in association with my colleague, Martin Baker, the company’s eCommerce website.

Like many companies, SliceStoppa knew that marketing films would play a vitally important role in getting their amazing golf training aid to market. Not only do marketing films lend themselves perfectly to demonstrating the unique selling features of products like SliceStoppa, but they also play a vital role in search engine optimisation. Producing a series of marketing films was therefore uppermost in their minds from day one. Furthermore, apart from direct sales from their own website (www.SliceStoppa.co.uk) the company also knew that wholesalers and retailers of their product would demand marketing films to include on their own websites.

Whilst Video Artisan regularly creates graphics and animated logo sequences for marketing films, this is the first time that we have been commissioned to design an original logo and branding for a business from scratch. The benefit of this was that we could design a logo that would work equally well on paper, online and on video from the outset. The benefit for SliceStoppa was that they could work with one local agency and know that there wouldn’t be any conflicts between differing agencies or design objectives.

SliceStoppa explained

SliceStoppa is a golf training aid that helps golfers to develop the perfect golf swing and approach to the golf ball. It can also be used for a number of other training drills to help with chipping, putting and removing leg slide on the downward swing. It can be used equally well on the driving range, practice tee, golf course or at home – and is suited to both left and right-handed golfers.

SliceStoppa in use
SliceStoppa – stills taken from marketing films

SliceStoppa is compact, impact resistant and incredibly easy to set up and use. Within minutes of introducing SliceStoppa to your regular golf practice you’ll see a vast improvement in your golf swing and will start hitting your golf ball further and straighter. It is available now direct from the SliceStoppa website at only £29.99.

The three SliceStoppa marketing films

The three marketing films were produced primarily for delivery from SliceStoppa’s website and are hosted on their YouTube channel (and also Video Artisan’s Vimeo channel). These consist of a general introduction to SliceStoppa, a short ‘teaser’ promo and a short film that explains what a golf slice is and how SliceStoppa helps golfers remove slicing and hooking from their game.

Introducing SliceStoppa

What is a Slice?

SliceStoppa Teaser

These marketing films were shot at three locations, including Topgolf at Chigwell, Ilford Golf Club and also outside the Video Artisan studio here in Loughton, Essex. Filming took around two days to complete and around three days to edit. Apart from one Action Camera shot on the teaser film, all material was shot using a Canon 5D DSLR. This is also the first instance where we have voiced the video ourselves too – but not until after the client had auditioned a number of voiceover artists.

Further Marketing Films

Within a week of being launched the initial interest in the product has been excellent and it has already been taken up by Groupon where it is selling really well. The website has also attracted interest from other golf retailers, golf professional and other specialist retailers. Once product sales increase SliceStoppa have plans to produce further marketing films to demonstrate the additional drills which the product can be used for.

If you have new or existing products that could benefit from marketing films, or you would like to hear about our complete marketing services, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Two new tracks for the Corporate Video Producer

AK159 and AK160
Two more additions to your corporate video music library

Two new tracks for the Corporate Video Producer

AKM Music have added two new albums to their extensive collection lately – ‘Leisure Lifestyles’ and ‘Cut to the Beat Vol.8’. Whilst both albums are aimed at the corporate video producer they’re both going to have an application within other production types too. You simply can’t have too much choice when it comes to your corporate video copyright-free music collection so these two will fill in where other albums fall short.

AK159 Leisure Lifestyles

AK159 Leisure Lifestyles
AK159 Leisure Lifestyles

This album contains ten tracks, each with an additional alternate mix and short version. As the name suggests these tunes are for helping to portray a more leisurely lifestyle with their cool, relaxing rhythms and easy-going beats. The album description suggests they’ll be great for corporate video producer specialising in property or location documentaries and promotional films – and I can’t argue with that. If you are producing hotel or resort promos then this is certainly one to audition and add to your collection.

1. The Perfect Accommodation 2:30
Bubbling synth sounds take us off to a warmer place – certainly warmer than the day I’m looking out of the window at right now! A medium paced track that you can imagine twinkling away under a corporate video narration telling you all about the holiday destination you’re about to experience. Track 2 & 3 are the alternative mix (2:30) and a short edit (1:20)

4. By The Pool 2:36
Slow funky sound which didn’t conjure up visions of lounging by the pool to me, but rather a cool dude striding through a 70’s fancy dress party wearing a dodgy afro wig, moustache and flared trousers. Wouldn’t sound out of place on an episode of Starsky & Hutch. Track 5 & 6 are the alternative mix (2:36) and a short edit (0:56)

7. Dressed To Impress 2:14
Get down to that that funky beat guitar again. Quite similar to the previous track though a little more purposeful and upbeat. It doesn’t go too far without another funky guitar rift so quite nice to edit to. The alternate version is a little less descriptive so might suit as a corporate video underscore better. Track 8 & 9 are the alternative mix (2:14) and a short edit (0:45)

10. Immaculate Design 2:18
We whiz forward a few decades with this track with a more contemporary slant to the funky medium tempo sound of previous tracks. There are more musical breaks in this track with swishy, swirling sound effects to edit to. Note the alternate mix is short this time too. Track 11 & 12 are the alternative mix (0:29) and a short edit (0:29)

13. Shape of Things To Come 3:07
Again this track has a more contemporary feel with strong drum rhythm and bass percussion driving the score along. Piano provides the main chorus with occasional orchestral stabs. There’s a strange whale-call sound sequence towards the end of the alternate mix so I reckon this would work well with a film with any link to the ocean. Track 14 & 15 are the alternative mix (3:07) and a short edit (1:06)

16. Ahead of the Curve 2:27
I’d call this one medium fast paced with a bit more of an electro beat to it – but still along the lines of a 70’s TV cop show with its funk guitar rifts. I think the alternate mix is a bit more useful this time as it’s a little more nondescript and intrusive. Track 17 & 18 are the alternative mix (2:27) and a short edit (0:25)

19. Designer Shades 2:12
A much smoother love-ballad sound to this medium-slow track. I can imagine Barry White laying his silky voice down to this. Swirling synth sounds lift it here and there mixed with another funky guitar chorus – but generally a steady tune throughout. Track 20 & 21 are the alternative mix (2:12) and a short edit (0:25)

22. Custom Build 2:37
Barry is back in the mix again as we stick with a smooth funky sound with orchestral swirls. Finding it hard not to confuse this with the previous track though – apart from the occasional break into castanets. Once again the alternate version might be a little more useful for corporate video. Track 23 & 24 are the alternative mix (2:37) and a short edit (0:34)

25. Catwalk 2:14
Out and out swing funk in a snazzy, jazzy kind of way. I feel cool just listening to this one. The reference to ‘cats’ in the title must be down to it conjuring up images of a cool cat dude striding confidently through your scene. It’s the kind of track that has you tapping your feet even though you might not want to. Track 26 & 27 are the alternative mix (2:14) and a short edit (0:43)

28. Life Imitating Art 2:30
Tubular bells meets echo-drum beat and funk guitar in this medium paced track. Once again I think the alternate score will be more useful as it’s less dominant than the main track and leans more on the tubular bells sound. Track 29 & 30 are the alternative mix (2:30) and a short edit (0:44)

 

AK160 Cut to the Beat Vol.8

AK160 Cut to the Beat Vo.8
AK160 Cut to the Beat Vo.8

It’s no wonder ‘Cut to the Beat’ has reached volume 8 as these alums will be the first ones you’ll turn to when you’re looking for something upbeat and driving on a corporate video. AK160 is a worthy addition to this range and will be ideal for corporate films, sports docs and anything where you want to create an impression of movement. Each of the six main tracks has an alternate mix and a sting – which is really handy for editing purposes.

1. Bright Light 4:22
Slow building electronic keyboard sound which builds in tempo. Flute swirls combine with electronic voice effects to give the track a very positive feel. Guitar strumming leads you on and upwards. The alternate score is upbeat from the start but is about a minute shorter. Track 2 & 3 are the alternative mix (3:19) and the sting (0:09)

4. Flyaway 4:23
Fast upbeat sound with slow keyboard passage underneath and lots of electro-pop drumbeats and edit points within it. You could imagine a night club scene with lots of fast cuts, lens flairs and erratic camera movement. It will have you reaching for the ecstasy – especially the alternative mix! Track 5 & 6 are the alternative mix (3:21) and the sting (0:15)

7. Firefly 4:11
This one is rapid – possible too much so. I found it quite difficult to listen to this one as its confusing – and that’s exactly the kind of story it will help you try and tell. I can imagine someone dashing here and there, obviously lost. There’s a hint of Blade Runner in there too and has that kind of futuristic sound to it. Track 8 & 9 are the alternative mix (2:11) and the sting (0:15)

10. Bigspace 4:20
Out and out euro club mix with swirling intro leading to heavier repetitive beat section. I almost broke out into my ‘big box little box’ dance routine listening to it. The alternate version is softer and half the length – and is a bit like the morning after the track before. Track 11 & 12 are the alternative mix (1:55) and the sting (0:11)

13. Stairs to the Galaxy 4:37
This one is upbeat again but a little more serious and urgent this time. It is very repetitive but breaks into a quiet segment halfway through which ends with a bang and back into the repetitive dance beat. Track 14 & 15 are the alternative mix (2:48) and the sting (0:12)

16. Prolever 4:08
Soft upbeat track with breaks into voice-effect sections. I can imagine the sun setting over some Ibiza beach scene listening to this one. Quite repetitive again but I guess most club-beat tracks are. There’s a swirling underscore to this which appears more prevalent in the alternative mix version. I can imagine shots of a production line in a factory working well with this. Track 17 & 18 are the alternative mix (2:48) and the sting (0:13)

 

Notes: You can preview both these albums on the AKM Music website – www.akmmusic.co.uk

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

5-top tips on producing an online promotional video

Online promotional video

5-top tips for online promotional video

Here are my top five top tips for creating online promotional video content for your business which will help you to engage with customers and generate new business. Having video on your business website has become a vital part of SEO (Search Engine Optimisation). All else being equal, a website that includes video content will rank higher than one without video.

I would of course recommend engaging a professional production company to produce your online promotional video. But I’m equally aware that some companies and organisations might prefer to start off by producing their own content in-house – if only as a proof of concept. The following five tips should help these organisations in the process and enable them to start harnessing the power of video on their website.

1 – Short, sweet and on message

Online promotional video - Clock
Time waits for no man

Don’t take liberties with your audience’s time. Decide what you want your online promotional video to achieve and don’t waste a second of your film deviating from it. Our attention spans have become extremely short and you will lose an audience the moment you stop engaging them. There is no minimum time an online promotional video should run for so if you can get your message over in a few seconds then do.

2 – Viral qualities

There’s a lot of talk about video content going viral and reaching millions of viewers in a very short period of time. Whilst this often happens with funny or current news clips on YouTube, gathering viral momentum for an online promotional video is extremely challenging.

Online promotional video viral
Making your online promotional video go viral

However, you can certainly increase your chances of your video content going viral within a target market sector. The simplest way to make your target audience to want to share your online promotional video it will have to be full of valuable information and of sector-wide relevance or interest. Only add humour to your video if you are confident that it will not offend anyone – and only if it’s actually funny and not just to you!

3 – Hosting on YouTube

Whilst there are plenty of places you can host your online promotional video these days the one that is going to help you most in achieving better SEO is YouTube – because it is part of Google and used by them in search returns. When you upload your file make sure you give it an SEO-friendly name. Think if what your intended audience is searching for on Google use that within the title and also within the additional description. Also, always use YouTube’s tagging facility to its maximum capacity with both long and short word descriptions of your content and the audience it’s aimed at. But beware! Don’t be tempted to include copyright music on your online promotional video as YouTube will detect it and will often remove content altogether.

4 – Spread the word

Once you have your online promotional video up on YouTube you need to spread the word about it. The first stage of this is to embed the YouTube version on the main splash page of your site – and enable it to play within that webpage. You should then share the news about your video through all your online social and business networking channels and post copies there if you can.

Social Networking Online promotional video
Sharing is good!

Finally, make sure you tell all your existing clients, suppliers, colleagues and friends about it and ask them what they think and to ‘Like’ it if they do.

5 – Do it!

If you have read this far then you’ve already realised that producing an online promotional video would be a great idea for your business. However, the problem with great ideas is that they’re useless unless you put them into action. If you are still determined to produce the film yourself then start by writing out your script and then set about planning the shooting and editing stage. If you are a complete video-novice there are plenty of free online resources that will cover the basics of how to shoot and edit video. One of the best of these can be found on www.videoskills.net

If you want to produce an online promotional video, but don’t have the time or inclination to learn the basic skills, then maybe it’s time to bring in the professionals who can do it all for you. You might be surprised at just how cost-effective this is. If you are at this stage then please feel free to contact us for a no-obligation consultation.

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Promo Film for #Stylfile

I hinted at having a very important meeting about a promo film commission on my Facebook page a couple of weeks ago.  Sorry for the tease but I couldn’t say too much until the video was complete and out in the open.

The meeting was with none other than Tom Pellereau, winner of the 2011 series of the BBC’s Apprentice, inventor and joint owner of Stylfile with Lord Sugar.  Tom’s offices (and that of the Amshold) are just a few hundred yards from my studio in Loughton, Essex and he was just as chuffed as I was at finding each other when he needed a video production company to help with his latest promo film.

Styfile
Working for Tom Pellereau on the Stylfile promo film

When I say “promo film”, it actually ended up being utilised as one main promo film and then chopped up into several micro promo films covering each of the products in the Stylfile collection.  This includes the S-File, S-Buffer, S-Clipper, Emergency File and the S-Ped – plus the Nailcare Collection.  The above links will take you to the individual product pages and each promo film.

Stylfile Collection
The Stylfile collection of nailcare products

The entire piece also includes an introduction by Tom covering his Apprentice story and the inspiration behind these revolutionary nailcare products…

The promo film shoot

I think this is a pretty good example of what can be achieved in a couple of days (one day shoot and another to edit).  Of course this can only happen when a client has done all the preparation, worked out the story and structure – and is a darn good presenter in front of camera.  Tom did most of the takes first time – which was a real benefit in the edit.  He had also pre-produced the title sequence and selected the royalty-free music score – both of which would have added another 1/2 day or so to the edit.

The shoot was carried out in a local studio but pretty much all the lighting (apart from a back light) was supplied by Video Artisan. To keep things cool I used my Lishuai LED Lighing Kit which was greatly appreciated by Tom.  I’ve written a review on this lighting kit for DVUser magazine and will be posting it here next week.  This promo film does give you a reasonable idea of what the kit is capable though.

This isn’t the end of this story.  In a couple of weeks I’m going to be shooting another promo film for Stylfile on another brilliant new product they are adding to the collection.  Sorry – that’s still hush hush at the moment so you’ll have to wait a couple of weeks for details.

In the meantime I guess I better get myself a Stylfile collection having raved about it to everyone.  Tom really has created something quite amazing and I’m sure the promo film will help spread the word even further.

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

Filming Customer References

Filming customer references

Why you really need to start filming customer references

One of my most exciting and promising contacts came in towards the end of 2012 with an approach from a local agency on filming customer references for a number of blue-chip clients.  One of their largest and more prolific clients that use their services is British Telecom.

The agency specialise in producing a mixture of marketing collateral based on interviews and interactions with their client’s customers.  These marketing tools can be brochures, website content, fact sheets and/or videos – which are ultimately used to help their clients sell more of their products or services.

Filming customer references for BT

My work for them started with a edit-only job on a short film about ABM Rexel in Spain outsourcing their world-wide telecommunications infrastructure to BT Global. Filmed in Spain by a separate film company, the first task was to transcribe and then translate the customer interviews from which the agency produced a paper edit for me to follow.  Two versions of this film were eventually produced – one with and one without English subtitles.

The second commission was a short film about the John Taylor Hospice who had adopted BT’s N3 Mobile Health Worker technology into their practice in Erdington, Birmingham.  This was partly finished project which required additional and more up to date footage by way of filming customer references and BT representative interviews at the hospice. In a nutshell, N3 Mobile Health Worker is a system which enables health workers to instantly access patient records in the field – and also to enable collaboration with other health workers involved in their care.

The original footage supplied by BT was taken roughly a year before my involvement and consisted of interviews with various health workers who use the technology in their work.  These were all filmed in standard definition so I had to be a little creative in using them against the new high definition interview material.  Insetting these shots into pictures I took of the the mobile device overcame this problem quite well.  I also think the benefits of the N3 Mobile Health Worker technology to the hospice and their patients is very clear from the final film…

The task of filming customer references

Filming customer references and case studies are relatively straight forward filming challenges.  However, the work that goes on prior to filming is key to their success.  The agency are incredibly skilful word-smiths who understand their client’s needs and know how to capture the messages that will result in their clients achieving their goals.  They also fully understand the video production process and the best ways to get the message over using video.  Every shoot is therefore tightly storyboarded and planned – but at the same time they realise the benefits of using creative professionals such as Video Artisan to help direct and craft the content into something with purpose.

I’m now in the middle of the third film for this agency and BT Global which is in the final approval stages.  We’ve also started planning another film which is due to go into the filming stage mid-April – so it looks like this is going to be a regular stream of work for Video Artisan.

I’ll be adding these films to my showreel as each one gets signed off – so keep an eye out for them.

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail