Rachel to Team Siren: ”Hey here’s a great idea. Let’s use our own summer holiday plans to create a video content led series and show how we can really use the power of film and video to capture hearts and minds and show we are #thedogs for this kind of storytelling.”
Team Siren: “Sounds great Rach. How we going to do that?”
Rach: “Well, we just film a load of iPhone content, and capture our great days out and then we pass that to the brilliant guys at Teralon. They can help, use their brilliant editing to make it look super. Cannes Lions here we come (not really!)”
Team Siren: “Love it! Just to make sure we nail the brief, let’s ask Julian for his guidance – Julian is a master blaster at this kind of stuff and has delivered some incredible work for our clients over the last few months. Julian can help!”
So, there we were all revved up, I was the Guinea pig...
... (if I can do it, anyone can). Julian briefed me and sent guidance and I shot away! Very enthusiastically and thinking I was the next James Cameron. Only I kept forgetting to use Julian’s tips and just grabbed a few bits and pieces throughout the day. Oh, I’m sure that’ll be fine, I thought.
Our (well, my!!) ambitious and exuberant thinking was that because we know words and scripting and storytelling really well (we’ve won awards for it), really, how much more difficult could it be for us to become cameramen and women and direct, script and film our own content? (Spoiler alert: a LOT more difficult, it appears).
What we’ve learned through this false start – is that the magic of generating really cool content and really great impactful films, comes from working with the right kind of expert AND in the prep ahead of filming and, of course, the editing. But if you don’t have enough of the right film content to start with – no one – not even the super talented Teralon team – can make this happen.
So, when my truly awful post-shoot report came back from the edit studio with an F grade, initially it flattened my excitement for the medium. But on reflection, in fact what it’s really done is reinforce the importance of working with true specialists and accessing the right experience from people who get your business, brand and vision. The right partner that will work with you every step of the way – and that is why it’s worth investing and budgeting to work with experts – no matter the medium.
Trust in the experts
We ourselves, give this advice to clients all the time. We are experts in all we do – words, news (good and bad), comms strategy and overarching messaging, launches, events, influencers… tick, tick, tick, we’ve got all that. Can’t beat us.
But of course, we are not technical experts in a great many things and for business today, it’s critical that every penny is carefully invested into creating impactful, on brand story content that is well made. There are times when iPhone footage works really well. However, the creative eye behind the iPhone camera must be a talented expert who knows what to look for in the first place.
And collaboration is key. Bringing the experts together – the content creators, the marketing pros, the team that knows the brand inside out – is when the real magic happens. When everyone knows what the project aims and objectives are and trusts in the teams to deliver against these then you let the creative ideas flow, have a smooth-running project and the results speak for themselves.
Over the years the team at Siren has carefully and gradually developed strong expert partnerships with complimentary teams who reflect our values of strong strategic thinking, impactful creativity and high-quality service and output. We always negotiate preferred rates because, like us, these partners become an extension of our team and we collaborate very effectively on your behalf. We enjoy working together for clients.
The moral of this story
(apart from accepting that my enthusiasm for film-making was not matched by my eye for camera angles or the self-discipline stick to the plan)