A video strategy – Rewriting the script.

A heavy time of teaching and prep – I’ve been called to do Jury Service in a week or so – has kept me away from the blog. My stats have been pretty healthy though thanks to my little video contribution to the Carnival of journalism – a video guide to video strategy.

The response has been pretty uniform – this is funny because it’s true.

I’m two parts happy with that because it proves I’m not just imagining the issues. But I’m two parts sad because it proves we still have a way to go.

Of course the videos tale the piss out of the implementation of the strategies rather than the strategies themselves. That’s what is frustrating. There are fundamentally good, proven reasons why each of these strategies (or a mix) will work, it all depends on how they are applied.

In an excellent ‘rebuttal’, Cyndy Green has her own low-fi response.

I couldn’t disagree with anything in that film. The key is the way the thing is sold.

I suppose the biggest illustration of this is not what’s in my videos but what isn’t. The films have no dialogue. There is script but no conversation. The voice dictates to the journalist.

Sad isn’t it that, given the tacit understanding that  radical change in our industry is the move from lecture to conversation, we don’t communicate effectively internally.

So here is a script. Perhaps you’d like to pass it on to your manager and you can role play it.

Scene 1: Mangers and journalists/photographers (journographers) have walked out of a seminar on ‘web awareness’ where a web savvy journo/manager/reader has been showing employees some neat things on the web they may have missed as they are up to their eyes in deadlines for copy.

Manager – that video thing is pretty exciting isn’t it?

Journographer – yeah, but looks tricky. Might be cool though.

Manger: Could make us some money. Why don’t I use my 20% time to look at some similar set ups and how they are doing it and you do the same.

Journographer – yeah, why not.

Scene 2: The manager and journographer have got together a few days later. They are round a computer looking at some of the sites they found.

Journographer: It’s exciting stuff but it could be time consuming. Some places are doing this point and shoot stuff as a quick way of getting it off the ground.

Manager – yeah, but what about the quality?

Journographer – Good point but it seems the high end kit is still pricey  and takes a long time to learn.

Manager: Hmmm. I know. I just don’t think we can wait to get that amount of money cleared…What about if try the point and shoot thing and see if we can get a sponsor. If it works then we can look at investing more.

Journographer: Sounds good. I think there are one or two others who have been doing the slideshow thing who will be up for having a go at something else.

Manager: Great. Look, I know it’s a bit more work. But if you can get a couple of people together I will see if we can find a video person to come in and spend half-a-day with you.

Journographer: OK. Let’s give it a go.

Okay, so it’s all a bit rose tinted. But is that kind of conversation so difficult?  Don’t make me make another video…

Geek note: For those who are interested the vid’s where made with my storyboard moleskine, my Sony Cybershot stills camera, Photoshop (to crop and tweak), FC Express to edit the images together and Garageband to add the spot effects and music. Then Visuahub to convert to a format for Youtube

Oh, and many, many thanks for the complimentary comments. Much appreciated.

Leave a Reply