Posts Tagged ‘corporate video metro ny’

Corporate Video: Endless Stories

January 31, 2013

When I got into the corporate video business over 15 years ago, clients wanted productions that were informational in content. They sought videos that would outline the work of the organization in all – or at least most – of its elements, even when the details required 12 minutes to roll out. Whether the video was to be used for marketing, HR or other purposes, an objective presentation of the nature of the entity was the fashion of the day

That tendency mirrored the appearance projected by news outlets at that time. Remember when the “fourth estate” was all about fair and balanced portrayals of facts based on research and widespread interviews with folks taking a diversity of positions?

Times have changed, and social media has played a critical role in this new world of information presentation. Today news correspondents can take the form of activists on the front lines of a revolt tweeting their eyewitness accounts on their smartphones in 140 characters at a time, reporting from the spots where they stand, unaware of the battle looming around the corner. Subjective by definition, they may nonetheless have more followers than nightly news stations, in large measure because audiences today are attracted to individual stories – real people, real events, real drama, real emotion.  The storytelling methodology resonates.

(One example of such a “story” we told through a video we produced for private equity client, The Riverside Company)

And it has influenced corporate video production. That extensive informational video style is passé. It has been replaced with short stories, endless short stories, each of which can stand on its own in a video or be grouped with others, depending upon a variety of factors including length of time needed to convey its heart. Stories can be about the company, such as the impetus that led to its founding or some cool community event in which its staff participated. They can focus on employees relating personal stories that integrate elements of their characters with aspects of their jobs. They can highlight a company initiative from the perspectives of those charged with implementing it, following the process through from idea conception to presentation. Endless stories.

While each video might max out at two minutes (often less), there may be many to produce, so ultimately far more time will be devoted to this format – and often watched by the viewers — than the single 12-minute piece in which the company invested 15 years ago. Yet unlike its old-fashioned predecessor, each piece will present only a slice of something related to the company. The viewer who watches a series of videos the company provides on its website and/or other social media sites may gain the larger umbrella perspective the company would like to portray. But the person who stops after the first will walk away with neither depth of understanding nor the larger picture perspective of the company.

This is the new communication reality. It is incumbent upon corporations still hesitant to find their video voices within its parameters. That may present some challenges, but a successful initiative will be worthwhile. Individual stories will resonate.

Our Corporate Personality

January 14, 2013

The notion that a corporation is a person under the due process clause of the US Constitution stretches back to the US Supreme Court decision in 1806 of Trustees of Dartmouth University vs. Woodward. The great Justice John Marshall, writing for that court, defined a corporation as “an artificial being” (and thus Dartmouth, as a corporation and a party to the charter-contract in dispute, could enforce its constitutional rights).

Other decisions elaborated on the concept, which was ultimately written into federal legislation stating: “In determining the meaning of any Act of Congress, unless the context indicates otherwise . . . the words “person” and “whoever” include corporations, companies, associations, firms, partnerships, societies, and joint stock companies, as well as individuals.” (1 U.S.C. section 1).

So at Voices & Visions we got to thinking… If V&V is a person (however artificial), what is its personality? It cannot be a reflection simply of its staff, since we are a collection of diverse personalities. How do we even begin to define the traits of this corporate person for whom we all work?

We started by listing some characteristics that we believe reflect V&V’s persona, based on the company’s “lifetime” of experiences – i.e., all the different projects on which V&V has worked together with the team of folks who’ve driven them. Those attributes include:corporate video nj, corporate video new jersey, corporate video production, business video, marketing video

  • Artsy/colorful
  • Warm/welcoming
  • Hip
  • Hard-working/ambitious
  • Down-to-earth
  • Enjoys diverse friendships
  • Traveler, but not tourist
  • Loves the journey
  • Establishes bonds globally
  • Is grounded in a stable, healthy family
  • Loves new challenges
  • Part techy, part creative, part academic
  • Thorough
  • Flexible
  • Adaptable
  • Storyteller
  • Loves dancing
  • Enjoys fine food, coffee, wine, and chocolate
  • Green/eco-friendly

We know that neither the distinguished lawyer Daniel Webster, who argued Dartmouth University before the Supreme Court, nor Justice Marshall, intended their definition of “corporation” to stretch into the notion of an entity defined with human traits. Nonetheless, these 207 years later, we would love to hear your comments about additional traits you think should be associated with V&V – as well as some thoughts about how the totality of characteristics might manifest themselves in a greater corporate personality.