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I want to discuss something that has bothered me for a while and might be considered relatively controversial; is video as good as it’s made out to be by many practitioners of the art?

Controversial and perhaps counter intuitive given our line of work, but I feel it’s something that needs discussing and clarifying. And when I say video, I mean both film and animation.

The problem for me, is video is being promoted as ‘The Holy Grail’ of marketing. If your business doesn’t have a video, you must be insane, is how the argument goes.

Don’t get me wrong and reach for the ‘close window icon’, video is a very powerful tool, however that’s all it is. A tool, designed to tackle a specific problem. And its power lies in the fact it can be used creatively to tackle a whole variety of problems and to tell very specific stories.

Perhaps during a pitch to design a new development, an architects practice might decide they need a concise, professional and creative way to demonstrate the space within the building. Something we can achieve with animation, specifically created to tackle that problem.

A photographer might want their story told in film, to show potential clients who they are, what they do and why they do it. A simple 60 second video can do just that and do it very well.

However a video can often be specified and created without knowing what problem it is attempting to solve; looks good, says nothing. It is often treated as a gimmick because people are beginning to believe that video will solve ALL of their marketing problems.

Just like a company investing in social media, a marketing campaign, or a new website, you do so because the investment is resolving (or attempting to resolve) a problem faced by the business.

If a client chooses video to increase their online sales, they need to look deeper at the problem. In many instances, an ‘explainer’ animation would help online conversion rates, but if potential customers are not even going onto the website in the first place, the animation, like a video is useless – it has no one to convert!

The video also has to be promoted, and needs a plan built around it. Leaving it on a landing page on your website is great if your traffic is high, however it also needs to be promoted, shared on social media and pushed via email

For me, video has a time and place; it shouldn’t be treated as the latest must-have. Before signing up for a film, the business must spend more time discovering the problem they are trying to solve

Next time you are watching a corporate video, ask yourself, did it solve a problem?

We’d love to hear your thoughts on your experience with video, especially if you have invested in video and it has helped. Of course if you are considering investing in video and want some help to identify a problem it can resolve, please get in touch, we’d love to talk moving images with you.

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