Considering how most customers engage with brands nowadays, you are missing out on a powerful marketing tool if your company lacks a great company-story video.
Those videos make for fantastic recruiting tools, but they also excel at communicating your brand's identity while showing customers what your company is all about.
That's assuming you are doing a good job with them, of course...
Whether you go with live-action footage or use animated videos to bring your business to life, it's easy to fall into some common traps with company-story videos and end up with something that hurts more than helps your brand and strategy.
So, we'll go over some areas you'll need to fully understand to make the most out of company stories and ensure you can develop a video that helps not only your business's branding but also your inbound marketing efforts.
The Three Pillars of the Perfect Company Story Video
A company-story video, also called a company-culture video, should first and foremost be authentic and true to your company's story and culture. It should also be creative and interesting so that people will actually want to watch it. Finally, it's essential to ensure that your video have a high-quality, professional feel to it that matches your brand. Here's why:
- Authenticity is an absolute requisite for company story videos. You want your audience to understand and experience what your business truly stands for, what it cares about, and who your people are who embody those ideas. All that can be achieved by featuring real employees, event footage, and situations that represent those elements in your video. It's also important to use language that fits your brand's image and tone.
- Creativity is another crucial element. If your video is boring or uninteresting, people will not watch it—it's that simple! Try to come up with unique ways to showcase your company and its people. You might use live footage from company events or your production floor, and add animated assets, visually compelling transitions, and interactive elements. Video is a flexible medium, so don't be afraid to explore its potential.
- High-quality look and feel is essential to round out our trifecta. You need well-lit live-action footage, high-quality graphics, and sophisticated animations, using sound design that elevates the piece and employing top-notch editing techniques. The long and short of it is that if your video looks amateurish, people will not take it—or your company—seriously. So, put in the effort to create a polished product.
Those three core elements form the bedrock of every well-produced company-culture video out there. But there's certainly a lot more you can do to make something truly compelling and memorable.
Let's talk a bit more about some of those elements and see how you can incorporate them into your culture videos.
Four More Company-Story Video Tips
1. Define your company and what it stands for
If you want a compelling company-story video, you'll have to talk about your company's mission, vision, values, and culture. Most potential employees and customers will want to know what your company stands for before doing business with you.
That said, don't feel intimidated by those highfalutin words!
A company's mission refers to what the company strives to do, the vision is what the company hopes to become, the values are the principles that guide the company and the people that operate within it, and the culture is how the company behaves toward its customers and employees; in all that, its tone and branding are reflected.
Your company's mission, vision, values, and culture should be front and center in your culture video, but a good company-story script touches on those elements without hammering you over the head with them.
Consider this video, for example:
Even a casual viewing of that video will tell you clearly what the company's business is all about: extending capital to small businesses to help them grow.
It also touches on the company's mission: driving innovation and improving through data automation.
And it highlights a value we can all relate to—"Eat up, drink up"—which is further reinforced by showing how the company nurtures that value through free lunches, a fully-stocked fridge, and snack areas.
2. Focus on one core value (or a couple, tops!)
Among your company's mission, visions, culture, and values, it is the last one that should feature most prominently in the video. Your company's values are what potential customers or employees usually empathize with the most.
That said, when showcasing your company culture, it's essential not to overdo it—to instead focus on one or two core values rather than of overwhelming viewers with a litany of principles that might dilute your core message.
Showing some restraint here will not only help you to communicate your message in a more concise and accurate way but also keep your video from coming across as too self-serving or disingenuous.
By the same token, ensure that the values you do choose for your piece are expressed clearly, and that they feel relevant to your company, your audience, and the message you are trying to get across.
This well-known online retailer places a high value on how its corporate culture informs its hiring practices. So much so that it saw fit to use that angle to craft its company story video—to great effect!
3. Use the power of stories to make an engaging piece
By the very nature of culture videos, you won't always be working with a script—many a great company story video is pieced together from event footage, interviews, presentations, etc.
But script or not, you'll always need a story to drive your video forward.
Now, every company is different, and it'd be impossible to suggest a one-size-fits-all approach to story. However, narratives are vital; they are powerful and they can transform a dull message into an emotionally compelling story.
When making a company culture video, storytelling is essential, and that means every element in your video should be working with the rest to tell a cohesive tale that has a beginning, middle, and end. You are not trying to bash your viewers with a bunch of facts and statements; you are inviting them to a short ride that helps them to know your business better.
Some culture videos use scripts, and you'll have to build your core story as you develop that script. Others, though, are more candid and build a narrative by weaving together interviews, event coverage, and other similar pieces of content—often those shared on your company's social media channels. Most of the time, those won't have, and don't need, a script.
As you start thinking about what your video could be about (your message) and how you could communicate who you are as a company to your viewers, think whether there's a story you can share that does that for you, or whether you can craft one from the various pieces of content and media you can include in the video.
4. Showcase real people, not actors
The goal of company-culture videos is to provide a genuine look inside your business. That means your videos should feature actual employees, not stand-in actors.
Though it might be tempting—whenever your budget allows—to hire professional on-camera talent, that's usually not a good idea for culture videos. People are really, really good at telling apart genuine sentiment from performances, and trying to fake a company-story video can be really harmful to your company's image and overall marketing efforts.
When you account for all of that, it's clear that the best way to produce a genuine, high-quality culture video for your company is to get employees excited to be a part of it!
That won't even be an issue for you if you are using event coverage footage to make your video. After all, what you already have is real people doing things and—hopefully—having a great time doing it.
However, if you are going for an interview-heavy piece, start crafting a list of people from your company you'd like to potentially feature. Talk to them at the very start of the project to see who gets excited by it.
You want (and need) people to be themselves. So, focus more on creating spaces where people feel comfortable working on the project rather than trying to micromanage each contribution. View yourself more like an orchestra director, and leave room for each participant to bring some creativity and passion to the work.
Get people on board early on and invested in the creative process, and you'll be surprised by the results!
Creating a company-culture video is a great way to show potential employees and customers what your company is all about. When done correctly, it can be a powerful tool for promoting your company.
Hopefully, you are now better equipped to start shaping some of the core elements that can turn a decent company-story video into a powerfully compelling tool that brings your brand closer to your audience.
Time to start thinking about what your company's story video will look like!
More Resources on Company-Culture Videos
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