How to Make a Company Culture Video That Wins Your Customers’ Hearts
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We would all like to know more about the products and services we buy, and the people who make them. Nowadays, who wants to engage with faceless corporations?
Company culture videos are among the best pieces of content you can use to foster that connection. Building consumer trust and generating empathy from your audience and allowing them to see the human side behind the brand.
Sounds simple, right? The thing is, not all company culture videos work! Some come out feeling faked or artificial, while others immediately resonate with your specific target audience.
The differences come from a number of crucial aspects you’ll need to account for if you want to make a truly effective and memorable video.
In this piece, we are following in the footsteps of some of the most skilled video production teams out there. Breaking down what it takes to make a company culture video that wins your customers’ hearts.
Download Your Easy-to-Use Video Script Template
Need an easy template to write the script for your culture video? Download one below, then continue on to learn everything you’ll need to do in order to plan an effective company video:
Define What Your Company is All About
Your company is more than just profit and sales; it also stands for something. Figuring out what that something is can be a tricky thing. However, figuring out your company’s identity seems like such an abstract concept… Let’s break it down into four main elements.
- Mission: Every great company starts with a purpose. Your mission is a clear and concise statement of your main objectives, which should guide every decision your business makes, big or small.
- Vision: Once you’ve figured out your purpose, think about the fulfillment of that purpose. Your vision describes the desired effect of your company on your community and your industry.
- As you’ve probably guessed, mission and vision work very closely together. Some companies even combine the two of them into one “mission statement”.
- Having a clear mission statement helps your employees understand how their work impacts the industry and the life of your customers. And will also guide your company culture video to a great start!
- Values: These are the moral guidelines that your employees live by, a set of behaviors that represent your company. Whenever your workers face a dilemma, they just have to look at your company values for guidance.
- Culture: When you add your company’s vision, mission, and values, you have your company culture. As a result, each culture is unique in its own way.
Focus on One or Two Core Values
We’ve seen too many company culture videos gone wrong to know that you can’t make an effective video by trying to tell too many stories. Don’t overwhelm your audience! Focusing on one or two core values is a key piece of advice if you want viewers to walk away with a clear idea of what you’re all about.
How do you make that choice? Well, not every aspect of your company translates into a good video. Start by figuring out which values would better fit the captivating story you want to tell.
For example, if you’re going to tell the story of how your company started, dig into the reason it all began. Figuring out the “why” is a crucial part of finding a story that’s uniquely yours.
Remember that values don’t need to be overtly original; what’s important is their authenticity. They’re also a collaborative effort, as a company is only as good as its employees.
If you can clearly define the values that set your company apart, then your culture video will benefit greatly by reflecting just that.
On Writing the Script
Yes, even though your video will reflect the real-life of your company, you need to put together a refined script. One you’ll use to outline the structure of your video and guide the whole video moving forward.
The key to a fantastic script is leveraging the power of storytelling. Since the beginning of time, we’ve communicated through stories that mirror realistic characters and emotions. Work your message into a three-act structure with a setup, a development, and a conclusion.
You can go back to how your company was founded, or work through the experience of reaching your first customers. You can focus on a specific important day or achievement for your organization, or just show what a normal workday looks like.
Whichever you choose, just know you'll always be telling a story.
In this regard, your company culture video will mirror an explainer video’s structure and execution. Don’t be afraid to draw inspiration and direction from the way those types of videos flow from one act to the other.
Length-wise, both types of videos share similar constraints – as both are best kept around the two-minute mark - so they are fairly equivalent. You’ll have 320 words to play with in your script, so make them count!
Real Employees, Not Actors!
This is why you wanted to do a company culture video in the first place; to show your clients the human heart behind the products or services they love!
If you use actors, chances are you’ll end up with a heartless video. Never mind the possibility of your audience noticing it (which they will). How do you think your employees will feel?
The whole point of company culture videos is that they offer a genuine look at your company. Approach employees at key departments relevant to the piece you are putting together and ask them if they wish to participate, or ask them collectively to choose a few people to represent them in the piece.
If you are struggling to find a suitable employee to reflect your company values, then maybe those values aren’t that genuine at all, and you might have to reconsider your angle.
Technical Considerations & Gear Requirements
Most culture videos rely on inserts and graphics interposed with narration and interview recordings to work. Interviews can be tricky, so we’ll tackle them later. First, let’s talk a bit about the nuts-and-bolts of putting your culture video together.
We live in an age where technology is readily available, so you probably won’t have much trouble getting the things you’ll need to shoot your video. That said, there are a few “tiers of entry” you can approach this.
- Basic: High-quality smartphones nowadays come with amazing recording capabilities. You’ll want two for interviews (to capture a primary take and a b roll) with tripods to keep the recordings steady. You can use the built-in microphone, but a Lavalier microphone is advisable. For lighting, open spaces with lots of natural light will suffice, and at least one potent artificial lamp+ natural light for indoor takes.
- Intermediate: If you want a bit better video quality, you can use consumer-level camcorders for video. On-camera condenser microphones are a nice upgrade from the basic level. For lighting, we’d recommend at least two-light LED kits (especially if you are recording in spaces with little-to-no natural light).
- Advanced: DSLR cameras with lenses will give you the best video definition available. Having tripods with a basic rail rig available will allow you to take more dynamic recordings. For the best audio feed, you’ll want a separate recording device from the camera; shotgun microphones or wireless Lavalier microphones are ideal. To guarantee great lighting, three lighting kits for indoors should be enough.
Past the basic level, acquiring all this gear might be cost-prohibitive and unadvisable. Instead, consider renting it or hiring video production services that come fully equipped.
You’ll also want to use some motion graphics and inserts to bring the piece’s continuity together, and these you can outsource.
Location & Methodology
When it comes to locations for your recording, it’s all up to you, and the needs of your video. Most culture videos include feed from events they want to showcase or active work spaces.
Interviews should be recorded on nice-looking spaces with no distractions. Framed on the interviewee, and ideally from two angles: front and to an angled side. This allows you to switch between angles on the final piece and make the piece more dynamic.
If you plan to shoot on location, consider that transportation of the gear and crew can be a challenge. If you plan to record for more than a day, you’ll also need to consider the secure storage of the equipment.
The Basics of Conducting and Filming an Interview
Interviews and testimonials are a big part of company culture videos. With the technical aspects out of the way, we can take a bit of a closer look into how to do them right. Increasing your chances of getting as much useful content as possible.
Here are a few tips you should consider before sitting down with your interviewee.
- First of all, you need to draft a list of the main questions you want to ask. It can be useful to read them to yourself aloud and imagine employee’s answers. What exactly you should ask will depend on your video’s particular angle and the message you want to convey.
- That said, make sure they are nice, open-ended questions that invite the interviewee to elaborate upon the question itself. The idea is to prompt a conversation, not an interrogation!
- If you want honest answers, you need to make your interviewee feel comfortable. You don’t want your employees to think that they’re answering a test which they can pass or fail.
- Make it clear from the get-go that there are no wrong answers. Also, sharing your questionnaire a bit ahead of time is also a great way to put their minds at ease. Lastly, don’t start the interview right away. Converse with them for a while prior to recording, even discussing unrelated topics to ease a bit of the tension they’ll understandably be feeling.
- Do keep in mind that while having a questionnaire is advisable, you should also be prepared to have a real and casual conversation. Feel free to come up with new questions during the interview, and be open to follow-up on threads that will naturally come up.
- Try to include as many voices as possible in your video. If you think of your company as a diverse group of people, show that by interviewing many of those faces.
- Make sure you’re filming way more material than what you’re planning to squeeze in the final cut of your video. As the famous North American novelist Ernest Hemingway used to say, “Good storytelling is like an iceberg.” You’ll only see the top, but the real work is beneath the surface.
Promoting and Distributing Your Company Story Video
You’ve finished your video. Congrats! However, your work here isn’t done. After all, you can’t win a customer’s heart with a piece nobody ever sees. It’s time to share your creation with the world.
The placement of your company story video strictly depends on what you’re trying to achieve with it. Of course, the more places you share your video, the better. You can save resources by focusing on the sites you know your audience usually visits.
Plus, you don’t want your video to feel like you’re selling or promoting something. For once, you’re aiming the spotlight away from your products or services and towards your employees and story.
Your video will look perfect on the “About Us” section of your company’s website, but you should also consider sharing it through other channels.
Upload your video on your social media platform of preference – ideally, the one where you have a stronger presence, or the one your audience favors the most – to start a direct conversation with your customers.
Company culture videos are also a great way to recruit new talent for your organization. Many companies add a link to their culture videos in their job search posts or career sites to show what it’s like to work with you.
Company culture videos are the most effective way of humanizing your brand’s identity to your customers. Telling your story and sharing your company values are also great ways to have your employees understand the value of their work.
People trust people, and if you’re looking to build a strong connection with your clients, you need to show yourself as something other than an anonymous band. Use these tips, and your company video will do just that.
April 22, 2020