I have two questions for you… 1: Do you have a business film? 2: Does it suck? If you haven’t got a Business Film that showcases who you are and what you do and how you do it, you may be missing a trick. This isn’t the sort of marketing ploy that only applies to consumer brands and trendy new startups.
It’s a genuine way for you to showcase your business to your customers (existing and future), and do so in a meaningful, interactive, and thought-provoking manner. It’s a chance to demonstrate your products… highlight your staff and culture… show WHO you are… and invite your audience into your home.
I don’t care who you or what industry you’re in, this is important!
I’m a big fan of video, and I think every business (no matter how big or small) can benefit from a business film to some degree. In my opinion it isn’t a question of whether you should have one, rather if you do it justice. Because guess what… ? I see some truly horrific examples that send shivers up my spine – and not the good kind of shivers, either.
I recently worked with a valve manufacturer called Blackhall Engineering, and part of this involved making a few videos. I’m not writing this blog post to showcase my skills or sell you a service. I’m writing it because I think your business film matters and there’s a good chance you’re not doing it justice. Don’t worry, I have you covered…
INTRODUCING THE BLACKHALL BUISNESS FILM
There’s a good chance you won’t need to use Blackhall’s services anytime soon. A valve manufacturer serves a rather specific purpose, but I hope you found joy in the video regardless, and appreciate the messages that shines through.
We’ll spend the rest of this post going over a few key areas as to why this business film (in my opinion) stands head-and-shoulders above the majority. Remember, Blackhall are a Business-to-Business manufacturer. They don’t find their customers on Facebook. They are’t some trendy new startup that deals with apps and sixteen-year-olds.
They’re an everyday business that deals with everyday people, and this is the point!
Your business deals with people. Your business is run by people (yourself included). You’re people dealing with other people, just like Blackhall do each day. Your business film needs to appreciate this, so let’s dissect the video, shall we…
1: PEOPLE, NOT PRODUCT
Something I learned quickly about Blackhall Engineering was this: they don’t sell valves, rather make the entire experience their customers go through as easy, enjoyable, and headache-free as possible.
You get so consumed about the products and services you offer, your business film soon becomes an ‘how-to‘ about your company. This isn’t the purpose of your video. It’s purpose is to hook your customer, make them feel something, and entice them to go further (buy, pick up the phone, email, etc…).
The fundamental aim behind Blackhall’s Main Business Film was to make it about people, not valves. It’s not to say we didn’t want to show valves, or people working on them, but a valve-is-a-valve-is-a-valve. If you focus on them too much, it becomes a how-to video about valves… making them… blah-blah-blah – this is boring. Who the hell cares?!?!
This is where most business films fail, because they make it about the product. It isn’t about what you do, rather WHO you are and WHO you serve.
If you wish to focus your business film on people, turn to:
- Your Staff
- Your Customers
- A Combination of Both
For Blackhall, we made it about their staff and culture because their quirkiness is one of their biggest selling points. They’re different to their competitors so we wished to demonstrate this by introducing their customers to the people behind the business.
But you could replace the staff with your customers, or combine these two groups. So long as you focus on PEOPLE it’s difficult to fail. Because people trust people. People have stories and personality, whereas a product doesn’t. A product serves a purpose, whereas a person has purpose.
2: MAKE IT REAL
Do you hate people who take themselves too seriously? I do. It drives me insane. I cannot trust someone who only shares their successes. It reminds me of the gambler who’s happy to shout about that one time they hit the jackpot… but what about the dozens of times they left the table with nothing?
Your business isn’t perfect, and the moment you try to make your business film perfect is the moment you ruin it.
That’s not to say it should be poor quality or badly edited. As you’ll hopefully agree with the video above, it’s well produced. But here’s the thing… IT. IS. REAL.
We included some of the outtakes on purpose. We wanted those watching to see Blackhall’s staff members smiling and laughing and having fun. We wanted to see people working in their natural habitat, not hidden away in some studio with a white background the entire time.
We didn’t script what people said. It made editing a nightmare, but this is fine because what people said was real. It was in the moment. When I interviewed them, we were merely two individuals having a conversation about valves… their job… about what they do each day…
You should storyboard your business film. You should take it seriously. You should ensure it’s of the highest quality and that people tidy their desks before you start filming. BUT above all you should make it real. People don’t trust a perfect business in the same way they don’t trust perfect people with perfect stories.
These people are liars, and businesses like this are, too.
Be real with your customers, and invite them to see the real you.
3: IT’S ABOUT YOU, BUT IT’S ALSO ABOUT THEM
This is your business film, so it goes without saying it’s about you. This is your opportunity to show who you are and what you do and how you do it. Placed front-and-centre on your website, you’re given a few minute to wow your audience.
Except, the moment you make it all about you is the moment your business film fails.
It comes back to this idea of people, and whether you make it about your customer or your staff, in some way it has to come back on your end user… How does this provide value to them?!?
Why is this worth their time?
Don’t talk about what your product does, talk about how it helps your audience. Instead of showing your product in action, show how it affects your customer.
When sitting down with the guys and gals from Blackhall Engineering, I encouraged them to talk about their customers whenever possible. I asked them to share stories with me. You may only see a few seconds of talking in the above film, but we interviewed each person for at least 20 minutes.
This is their main business film, but there are other films on the website that focus on their customers, too.
In other words… don’t be afraid to make it about them. Introduce yourself. Showcase your amazingness. Put on your finest face, but keep your end user in mind at all times. If you do this, you won’t only make it a more immersive and interesting video that people wish to watch, but strengthen your relationships with existing customers, too.
Because you took the time to include them. Not enough businesses do this, but hopefully you will from here-on-in.
WHAT WILL YOUR NEXT BUSINESS FILM LOOK LIKE?
A business film can take on many forms. It’s style, approach, the feelings it evokes… they differ from video-to-video. Your business film is your business film, so it should relate to you, who you are, why you’re special, and how you go about your work differently (and hopefully better) than everyone else.
But the moment you make your video all about you… all about your product/service… all about how good it is and what it does… is the moment your business film becomes the type of example I loathe.
Whereas if you make it about people, and make it real, and focus on how you help your audience instead of what said product does… good things occur.
I’m proud of the Blackhall Business Film, but I’m bound to say that. This isn’t the point of today’s post. The point is to make you think about your own business film and whether you do it justice. If you do, fantastic. Please share it with me because I love to find new brands working and revelling in the right way.
If not, change. Re-work it. Push the boundaries and become the brand you’re destined to be.If you have any questions, let me know. I’m always happy to chat on FACEBOOK and TWITTER, so don’t be shy. Let’s chat about your business film soon, shall we.
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