How to Create Professional Quality Company Showreels
Company showreels, once only used in creative arts like acting, filmmaking and music are now a standard part of video marketing toolkits. Often called company showreels, they aren’t just for creative fields. A showreel can work for any business that provides experiences, services, and even some products. How would that work? Let’s take a look.
How Company Showreels Apply to Business
Actors, directors, and musicians have been creating company showreels for decades. They take examples of their best work and put it together in a way that highlights their skills and abilities. Hopefully, the next director or agent that sees it thinks it’s good enough to invite them to an audition. That’s glossing over the details, but it’s the essence of how it works. The same principle applies to a company. Only this time, the focus is on the best examples of your company’s work rather than your talent. And the audience is your potential customer rather than directors or agents.
Let’s look at some specific examples. Landscape companies often use before and after pictures to show the improvements they’ve made. You can say the same for painters, carpenters, architects, and designers. The list could go on. Those businesses likely have a portfolio on their website with these images. They show the capabilities of the company, but a static portfolio only goes so far.
To prove the point, consider event management companies, or any other “experience” company. They too can have images of events. But the images only give a glimpse of what an event is. They might have some video clips too, which gives a better idea of what the event was like. How much of that video will a potential customer watch, though? Will they get to the best parts?
That’s what company showreels will do: present to your customers the best parts or examples of your company in an easy to consume video. You don’t have to guess if they’ll watch the best parts or scroll your website to see the best images in your portfolio. By putting them together in a company showreel, you’re making sure your best goes first.
Tips for Creating Professional Company Showreels
Now that you’ve seen how they can apply to any company, not just a creative, here are some tips to help make professional company showreels that will impress your customers.
Put the Best First
This first tip should sound familiar. I’ve mentioned it several times already, but it is worth mentioning again. Sometimes people have an impulse to save the best for last. This is a wonderful concept when eating chocolates or savouring your favourite meal. It doesn’t work in marketing. Not usually anyway. If you’ve worked with well-known brands, put those first in your company showreels. Anything customers are likely to recognize (and have a positive association with) should take priority over a personal favourite. By all means, add those in too if you have the room (more on that later), but the idea is to impress the customer from the start. They may never finish the video for a variety of reasons but if you’ve made a good impression early, they will remember it.
Keep It Short
No matter how impressive your work is, no one wants to watch a movie of it. A general guideline for video marketing is to keep somewhere in the one to three minutes range. This can vary by industry so if you want to go longer, take the time to look at your competitors and see what they are doing. Or you can research the statistics on your industry for confirmation. If you’ve hit the time limit expected and you haven’t added that favourite project, resist the urge to add it. Or if you do, monitor the statistics and see when viewers drop off. Then make changes if you need to.
Think Beyond the Montage
Resist the temptation to take all the photos and video clips you have, smash them together, add some music and maybe a voice over to create a montage. That may have worked a decade ago. It probably would have been impressive then, too. But video is ubiquitous now, and viewers expect to get value for their time spent watching. So, get creative in how you put it together. An architect, for example, could show several stages of a project from breaking ground to the final before and after image. This gives customers a sense of how they work and what their capabilities are. Video gives you the chance to have your customers' experience working with you. Take advantage of that. If you’re short on creative ideas, consider consulting a video production company or outsource.
Update, Update, Update
Once you have completed company showreels, remember time continues to flow and there will be new projects that become your new best examples. Define a schedule to revisit the video from time to time. Remember, just because a project is new doesn’t mean it needs to go into the company showreels. Only update when you’ve got something impressive to show off to potential customers.
Make sure the company showreels focus on your company’s work. For example, if your catering company provided food for an event, don’t focus on the lighting, music or venue. This could mislead viewers to think you provided those elements too. You can provide focus by choosing the right images and video, or you can add text descriptions to help explain what you did. You can also add a voiceover, but not everyone watches a video with the sound on. That’s just another reason to create something visually informative and pleasing to the eye.
Use a Professional Looking Player
Given the point is to show you at your best, you’ll want complete control over the presentation of the video. This means hosting the company showreels (and your other video content) on a video platform service like Zidivo. You can select a player that contains your branding and doesn’t offer “suggested videos” that redirect your potential customer to a competitor or to a sea of cat videos. When you host with Zidivo, you have full control and ownership of the video, so your viewers get the exact experience you want them to have.
Creating company showreels takes time and effort, but it will continue to pay off as more customers see your wonderful work.