Custom Video: the best way to tell your story
Sam Willet gravatar avitar

Custom Video: the best way to tell your story

Author: Sam Willet | Posted on: 30 November 2016

The above video is one of my favourite projects from this year. It’s a custom video we put together for Timonier, a family wealth management firm based in North Carolina. In this post I just want to briefly explain why I was such a fan of this project and what I think we’ve achieved.

Unique story

The starting point for this project was an interview with Tim Baker, President and CEO of Timonier. We'd already worked with Tim on some pre-produced content. In our phone conversations we were blown away by his knowledge and the unique way that he talked about his philosophy, showing us ways of thinking that were personal to him and influenced his professional approach. Tim is an uncommonly engaging raconteur, and we knew we had to harness that.

We got the personal, natural interview we were looking for. The style we chose for this was hand drawn, combining thin lines with collage. A more corporate icon-based or motion graphic style would not have been suitable for this source material.

Tim’s voice makes the video personal, and he’s able to deliver his own message exactly as he wanted. We deliberately used the recording we got from the studio without any effects or edits, other than to pick out the messages we wanted. This is natural and honest, the viewer knows Tim is in a studio, so hearing noises from his chair or bumps on the microphone is all part of the experience.

We added sound effects to complement our animations, and I think this makes the video light and engaging, and introduces Timonier as a wise, friendly organisation.

The method

To start, we wrote some interview questions for Tim. He was able to consider his response to these over a couple of weeks. I then arranged an interview to take place with Tim at a professional recording studio near to the Timonier office.

Once we had the recording, we picked out the best parts of Tim’s responses to form the narrative structure of the video.

From there, our animator Will Marler storyboarded the video and started work on the animation.

This method relies on getting great source material from the subject, so well done and thanks to Tim for his contribution. Most of the work comes in the animation stage - lucky for us we have a great animator who is happy to put the time in.

The impact

This video addresses a business challenge by setting Timonier apart from other wealth management firms. Typically, if companies in this sector have a homepage video, it’s a filmed interview with some supporting footage of their office environment. There’s nothing wrong with that if the messages are strong and the photography is high-quality, but that style is certainly more common. We do produce videos like that, but as you can see from the examples below, we make sure to capture footage which shows off the personality of the organisation.

Overall, this project demonstrates what can be achieved with custom video and just how personal and unique the results can be. Pre-produced content is great if it’s branded for you and the messaging is right, but particularly for a home page video, where it’s important to explain who you are or why you approach your business a certain way, custom video is well worth the extra cost in order to communicate with your audience on a more personal level.

Here are some other posts which discuss homepage videos and provide some great examples:

Author: Sam Willet

Sam Willet gravatar avitar
Sam is a Producer and Client Manager at Ember Television. He has worked in online media since graduating with an MA in Film and TV from the University of Birmingham, and loves a good human interest story. You can contact him at [email protected]
Custom Video: the best way to tell your story



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