Become your own production company and solve the attention span problem with solid storytelling

It is not news to say that video and audio are top communication media. The growth of business video and audio is extraordinary. But the cost of commissioning a production company is preclusive to any but the larger organisations.

Even when they have the resources and equipment there is still one major barrier to optimising the use of audio and video. Although we are told to tell our stories, there is very little wisdom about what story to tell. This is a critical obstacle. We are told attention spans are shrinking, but the major point of failure to engage an audience is a weak story.

There are a number of models of story and its telling. One stands out for business use. It defines a story as an argument for the solution to a problem. Any business must make an argument for its solution to at least one of its customers’ problems.

Academic psychological and neurological studies have shed much light on successful storytelling structures that induce audience empathy and engagement. 

These stories avoid “I’m great, buy my stuff!” assertions through the use of an empathic character with a strong desire who runs into a conflict. This causes the audience to wonder what happens next. A strong narrative coherent with the story world that results in resolving the conflict will engage the audience’s attention. 

But how to do this?

Front loading the production process to identify the strongest story that will satisfy objectives makes production planning very much easier, faster and results in less overshooting of material. This process is called storyfinding and it is our speciality. It streamlines the rest of the production process, which no longer needs the editor to find the story in the footage.

Armed with a precision shot-list and set of interview topics, shooting and editing become simplified and reduces the need for a huge crew. There are many sources of training and advice that also simplify shooting and editing using smart phones. If an iPhone was good enough for Steven Soderbergh to use for his Hollywood film ‘Unsane’ then it’s clearly good enough for business communications. In fact, the use of phones is now common in film and television production.

We steer our clients to several sites that we’ve found to provide consistently excellent content. They teach how to shoot and edit, our process defines what to shoot. Remember, the story is a critical component of engagement.

Even a short study of YouTube will show that many creators have built sustainable channels with good followings despite never having attended film school or using expensive equipment.

 The best next step is to arrange a call with us and we’ll explain our process and techniques further. This puts you under no obligation and may even be enough to get you started.