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Digging deeper beyond the lens

Leonardo da Vinci said that "Learning never tires the mind". I think what can tire her out is the method.

Juan Pablo Morales Sarmiento*

Lately I have found with surprise a large number of managers of human resources, communications and marketing (some of them from very large and prestigious companies), with a common question: How to discover and apply mechanisms that strengthen the uses of corporate video to obtain better results?

I usually answer this with another question, wanting to investigate whether, regardless of the very purpose of the video, they are investing in developing entertaining, engaging and emotional content. The answer is always practically the same negative, and my conclusion is that we are today, in a digital world, where the vast majority want to have video channels without knowing their object, or what to say, or how to tell stories.

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The use of video at the corporate level has enormous advantages when it comes to transmitting any message. Whether oriented to the training and training of personnel, general information or commercial function, communication through sounds and moving images makes the brain perceive greater stimuli and produce better results when receiving information. But don't confuse a good video with a bad one. It may be that many begin to see a bad one, the problem is that almost no one finishes it.

Some writings on theories of learning, communication and entertainment, remind us of the fables of Aesop and the parables of Jesus as methods to teach and transmit messages through storytelling, with a force so powerful that they have made them transcend for centuries. Teaching, communicating and entertaining effectively is about the same thing, about telling stories where we ourselves can see ourselves reflected, identified and even caricatured.

Hollywood teachings applied to corporate video
We are mainly visual, kinesthetic and social beings, we learn by imitating and manipulating objects (Piaget); our neural networks are woven with our experiences. So, if we really want to convey a message effectively, we have to resort to emotions. Our brain learns in context and video is the best way to travel emotionally to be able to live and feel to engage with the audience.

The cradle of the entertainment and content industry leaves us with two reflections, assuming, of course, that the best method to communicate is through video.

First. The video must be made with the audience in mind and not ourselves.
Just as TV scheduler programmers should not plan their content structure based on their own tastes, but on the characteristics of their audiences, one of the most frequent mistakes in the development of training, marketing or communication plans is to focus on the message and not on those who should receive it. And I don't mean audience segmentation by this, but the technical construction of messages.

Answer the question: What do I mean and how can I tell it in less than 20 minutes? The production of a video does not begin by turning on the cameras but by planning a script, as we learned in our Spanish or literature classes in our basic school, when we talked about beginning, knot and outcome.

As soon as you have the answer, divide your message into several main ideas and start designing a script that has rhythm between them, through stories, stories and messages and that is not limited to a reading of a text. Start at the knot to ensure your audience wonders about the start and end – and doesn't stop the video – and for every idea, repeat this process.

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Second. Not only the sound, the lights and the camera are important.
If so, to tell a story, big producers wouldn't invest in studios, effects, soundtracks, and production technique.

Remember that in every 16:9 frame there is plenty of space you can interact with. With 2D and 3D animation techniques or simply adding layers in post-production, you can experiment with your environment. Using these types of resources can help you be more forceful with your message and convey it better.

Music and sound effects aren't just for television and film, they help keep your audience's attention, engage feelings and emotions, and better ensure ownership of your message.

Finally, the cameras. These were not made just to leave them on a tripod and use them to play with zoom and tilt movements and panning. The movements of the travelling and rotating camera change the user's perspective. The game with the depth of field of the diaphragm, as well as the experimentation with the focus of the lenses, brings more information and stimuli to the brain achieving greater effectiveness and keeping the attention focused on the message.

Beyond post-production
In an era where companies must seek to innovate in their training processes and commercial training, strengthening the skills oriented to the service and the closing of sales of their staff, video can become the best ally to achieve these goals.

The benefits of online corporate video are enormous, from saving transportation and logistics costs in business meetings, modernizing senior management communication channels, improving staff updating processes in highly regulated sectors, optimizing strategies for knowledge distribution and management, and induction programs, to the simple fact of increasing internal participation in the activities of companies.

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For this, it is convenient not only to find a narrative identity, a good storytelling and the use of an appropriate production and post-production technique, but also to have an online video platform that is adaptable to the needs of the organization.

The natural evolution of digital communication tools aimed at improving the user experience, and particularly those related to training, already allow interactive digital mechanisms of gamification, tracking, quizzes and all those learning objects that children usually play still on paper to be integrated into the video.

Corporate use of video will continue to expand. Regardless of the industry, hundreds of video use cases can be found on the Internet in companies of any type and of all sizes. Search, compare, and identify strategies that you can easily adapt in your organization.

Just keep in mind, when starting a strategy of this type, that it will always be more expensive to make a bad video than a good one, because its true value and return is in who is going to see it.

*Juan Pablo Morales Sarmiento is the CEO of NuevosMedios, you can contact him through his Twitter account @JuanPMoralesS

Richard Santa, RAVT
Author: Richard Santa, RAVT
Periodista de la Universidad de Antioquia (2010), con experiencia en temas sobre tecnología y economía. Editor de las revistas TVyVideo+Radio y AVI Latinoamérica. Coordinador académico de TecnoTelevisión&Radio.

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