Company stories or culture videos are powerful pieces of media you can add to a marketing campaign. You get to establish a connection with your audience, humanize your brand, and give it a unique voice and personality, all in the span of a single piece of content.
How’s that for efficient marketing?
That said, those aren’t the more significant benefits you get out of company stories. You also get to nurture trust and empathy with your viewers.
For a company story to work, there are some marks you should hit. In this piece, I’ll go over some of these essential elements and give you a bit of advice to ensure all these bases are covered.
Understand Your Company’s Culture, Mission, and Vision
This first point might sound like a no-brainer, but I continuously see company culture videos that feel disoriented and scattered. Videos without a clear message don’t make an impact!
Company stories are in my top five favorite types of marketing videos, right after explainer videos and commercials. However, it’s really easy to miss the mark with them if you aren’t sure about what it is you want to say during pre-production.
Start by taking time to go over your company’s mission, vision, and the culture that’s naturally built around it. An important caveat here, though, is to never try to fake it. Every company and brand has a unique voice. And while it might be advisable to look around and see the way other companies portray themselves, you should be trying to find out what makes yours unique.
Find Your Core Values & Focus on Them
The last thing you want for your company story video is a bored audience. An excellent way to avoid that is by choosing one or two core values as the video’s theme.
They are the lenses you can use to color your message, and the overarching “feeling” you are hoping to inspire in the viewer.
Choosing these values is really contingent on your company, and it varies greatly from one another. I’ve seen big corporations usually going for the “capable and professional” vibe, while smaller companies take advantage of the “familiar and friendly” approach. Remember, though, being genuine trumps forcing originality every time.
Show Real People, Not Actors
It doesn’t matter what your niche, audience, platform, goals, or corporate image is. Having real employees sharing their experiences of working with your company is non-negotiable.
Humans are hardwired to distinguish real sentiments from simulated ones. It’s an evolutionary survival tool. It’s why we are so moved and impressed by Oscar-worthy performances. And unless you have the budget to book McConaughey for your company video, you’ll be best served by going with the real deal.
On-camera presence is a big concern. But there can be real magic when a passionate employee gets a stage to express themselves.
Add to that a well thought-out script, skillful editing and post-production, and you’ll make those rough diamonds shine!
Plan Ahead & Ask Great Questions
The quality of your company video comes from the people you choose to sit in front of the camera to talk about your brand.
But thinking this is a casual and unstructured process is a mistake. A costly mistake.
Bringing your video together will require handling budgets and schedules efficiently. Getting a group of people together including a filming crew and on-camera subjects can be difficult and expensive
Finding a professional team capable of handling all the technical aspects can alleviate much of this stress. Creating insightful and thoughtful questionnaires that help your employees cover the points you wish to present is also critical. When you ask good questions, you get good answers.
Find an Audience
Once the video’s been made and edited, you’ve got to show it off. A lot of video companies settle for creating a space on their websites and just leaving their video there, hoping customers will eventually stumble into it, but this is a pretty poor strategy. Once you have an awesome piece of content that represents your brand, you need to use it proactively.
You can launch a social media campaign centered around your brand new company story video, using video-friendly platforms like YouTube, Instagram, and Facebook. If you have a sizable mailing list, videos like these are a great way to grow its click-through rate. And if you already have a marketing funnel in place driving people to specific sections of your website, making your company story video visible there can be a great boon.
Company culture videos are an excellent way to show your customer base the human face of your brand, a way to identify with your core values and relate to your message on a more personal level.
Victor Blasco’s an audiovisual designer, video marketing expert, and founder/CEO of the explainer video company Yum Yum Videos. Besides running the business, he’s a lifelong student of Chinese philosophy and a passionate geek for all things sci-fi.