The words ‘corporate communication’ make you think about files, dossiers, and PowerPoint presentations delivered by very serious looking guys in suits.
In reality, corporate communication is much more stimulating than that. It comprises of all the internal and external activities conducted to generate favorable feelings among stakeholders and to make your business look good.
This could range anywhere from public relations events and CSR activities to employee hangouts and crisis communication. The scope of this field is quite broad but what makes all corporate communication activities ‘hip’ is videos.
A corporate video is much more than just selling a product or service. It is about promoting a business as a whole.
This blog post is your chance to learn all about corporate videos from their characteristics, production processes, types to best examples. Let’s dig in.
4 characteristics of a corporate video
1. Perception building
Most corporate videos are produced for perception building purposes. They generate positive word-of-mouth and highlight how an organization is making people’s lives easier.
Certain businesses have an inevitable unfavorable impact on some communities or the environment. Corporate videos are often used to promote how the companies are countering this problem or investing in the betterment of the communities.
2. Decision making
With increasingly competitive markets, more and more businesses are offering the same products and services. When the audience is looking for a solution, it becomes difficult for them to pick a service from so many options.
What sets a particular business apart is its story, values, and culture. The audience is bound to choose the one whom they resonate with the most.
3. Niche audience
Unlike regular advertisements and promotional videos, corporate videos are usually not meant for mass consumption. Be it for company stakeholders, industry partners, or human resource acquisition, they are designed for a specific audience.
4. Internal comms
A business is only as good as its workforce.
This is why most corporate videos are directed towards a company’s employees to keep them informed of any updates, new directions, company culture, and to ensure seamless communication and workflow among departments.
Read More: Enhancing Internal Communications through Video – a Guide
3 stages of corporate video production
1. Pitching and briefing
Before you pick a service for your corporate video production, do a lot of window shopping.
Surf websites, visit their LinkedIn company profile, and ask around for testimonials. This process should lead to a shortlist for your potential corporate video production services.
After that, get in touch with them and ask for a pitch and brief meeting.
This is essentially a get-to-know session where you tell them who you are, what you want from them, what challenges or opportunities you seek to tackle with video, and what sort of video content you’re looking for, etc.
At the same time, it’s an opportunity to see what kind of ideas they bring to the table, whether their style of work resonates with you, and which potential service suits your overall needs the best.
First thing’s first, you need a corporate video strategy. If you’re investing money in any form of video production you need to set goals for it that are specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and timely (aka SMART goals).
So, it’s prudent to not just go for a video production service but a video marketing agency.
Choose an agency that will sit down with you and plan out the whole thing from start to finish.
Some major considerations are; helping you define (or refine) your goals, understanding your audience and marketing funnel, talking logistics, budgeting and timeline for the project, and what channels you’d be promoting the video on.
Also, make sure that they have the tools to provide you insights and analytics for your campaign.
Set up a solid communication plan with your corporate video production company from the start.
It’s good to have clear expectations about how often they are supposed to report back to you with the progress and to what extent they need to keep you in the loop during the production stage.
You can also decide on the number of revisions or iterations that are included in the budget and how much would they cost beyond that point.
Once the formalities are done it’s time to jump in the creative process. The script for corporate videos might not be as colorful as advertisements and explainer videos, but it’s still the pillar of your video.
Keep in mind that corporate videos usually don’t rely on complex animations and overly cinematic production so the script has to be strong enough to make an impact.
You can either provide the agency a structured or semi-structured script yourself or ask them to do it for you.
Make sure that your corporate video production company knows the purpose of the video and your brand’s story to the core. The more they know the easier it will be to embody your message.
Read more: How to Write an Excellent Video Script
After you and your agency have agreed on the perfect words, its time to create the perfect visuals.
The process may vary slightly for animated and live-action videos. For 2D animation storyboards, the characters need to look almost like the finished product as most studios follow the storyboard’s vibe while animating.
For live-action and CGI animation, a rough sketch will do and the actors and animators will take it from there.
Another difference is how shots and scenes are numbered for different types of videos. A live-action or CGI video may include different shots in one scene. In 2D animation, every shot is considered a scene.
The storyboarding process usually involves some review and feedback until the client and agency are on the same page.
Live-action videos are often high budgeted as they could involve paying the actors, booking a location, and the general cost of the equipment and its handlers.
In contrast, animation is a much more condensed process that requires less equipment and a few people taking care of multiple things at a time.
That’s why the production processes of live-action and animated corporate videos vary greatly:
- Set: Your agency will either shoot the video in a studio, outdoors, or set it up in a mock location. If it’s one of the latter two, the agency will conduct a reconnaissance of the place to make sure it’s suitable for shooting.
- Lighting: The right lighting is key for shooting any type of video. Since corporate videos might be interview oriented, people must be in the right focus.
Lighting also helps set the mood. Depending on the type of video, your agency will experiment with ambient light, additional studio lights, and shadows.
- Acoustics: Checking the acoustics of the place your video is being filmed at is key. An echoey video is a big turn off. Similarly, shooting outdoors requires checking and minimizing certain unwanted noises e.g. traffic.
- Rehearsal: You might be looking for an impromptu or in-the-moment feel in your video but your actors must memorize their scripts and rehearse their parts before the real takes.
Similarly, even if you’re featuring ‘real people’ they need to know what they’re going to say. Most people get camera shy, even CEOs.
- Recording: After the cameras are set up for different shots, the lighting is perfect, the sound check’s done, and the actors are in places, your corporate video is ready to be recorded.
The more meticulous the preparation, the easier and quicker it will be to record the video.
- Illustration: This stage refers to the creation of 2D or 3D characters and other elements. Their creation will be strongly inspired by your brief and your storyboarding process.
- Animation: Its all about making the characters and elements move and flow seamlessly across frames to tell your story.
- Sound Design: A solid sound design involves adding sound effects to the video. These could also be auditory elements like a pop, swish, or chime sound to enrich and complement your visuals.
Related: Tips for Character Designing for Explainer Videos
- Editing: Once you have enough good quality shots or animated frames for your corporate video, its time to cut and simplify them until there is no fluff left.
Corporate people are busy and used to getting their info in bullet points. So, all the focus should be on delivering your message as quickly as possible.
- Soundtrack: The choice of appropriate music is vital in delivering your brand’s message. A soundtrack is usually added to live-action videos after the shots have been edited or compiled.
For animation videos, this could be done during or after editing as some frames or elements may require a flow that’s in-sync with the soundtrack.
- Review: After editing and putting in the soundtrack, your agency will get back to you with the first draft of the corporate video.
After reviewing the draft and getting approval from all the in-house people involved, you can share your feedback and suggestions with the agency which they can incorporate in the second draft.
The second draft usually goes through some minor edits and the video is then finalized.
Now, the whole shebang doesn’t just end at post-production, though. It only marks the start of a new chapter: promotion.
Corporate video promotion
Receiving the final version of your corporate video on time and delivered exactly as you like is a huge project milestone.
Your video marketing agency will then go all out in the promotion phase. They’ll put the video on all your pre-decided channels and manage the campaign.
It’s their job to maximize the video output and get you the juicy KPIs. You can also have a clear view of the campaign metrics and ROI so you know what’s working and what’s not.
According to a survey we conducted, 76% of marketers say that video has shown positive ROI in their marketing efforts. By choosing the right video marketing agency, you can join them too!
Read in-depth: How to Choose the Best Video Marketing Agency for Your Business
10 Types of corporate videos with the best examples
Now that you’re caught up on how to make corporate videos, let’s get you loaded with some inspiration.
When it comes to corporate video production, the key is to identify which kind suits your company’s current needs. You can choose from several internal and external corporate video options:
1. Conference videos
While conferences and corporate events may seem grand to the people outside the corporate world, a lot of professionals don’t like attending them.
Therefore, it’s a marketer’s feat to convince people to join them. A conference video promo with impactful visuals and an engaging script can spark people’s interest and make them RSVP in no time.
Videos also breathe a new life into conferences by increasing interactivity during the event. That’s a one up from listening to monotone speakers for hours!
By strategically placing screens at conferences, you can use videos as a learning and accessibility tool, to creatively display your charts and projections, to introduce your speakers, and to showcase your products and their real-life applications.
Needless to say, that videos can give conferences and seminars a lot of street cred.
After you’ve spent the big bucks promoting and conducting a conference, its natural that you would want to highlight your success. Companies often do a post-conference round-up video to share internally and externally.
Here’s a recap example of the Startup Grind Global Conference 2018.
2. Merger and acquisition videos
Corporate mergers and acquisitions are uncertain times for the employees. Some fear layoffs and some are concerned about how the new management would affect their work dynamic.
Creating an internal comms video at such times to address your employees’ concerns and introduce them to a new business direction is a reassuring move.
Depending on the content of the video, you can use the same or a separate video to announce your merger or acquisition to the industry stakeholders.
Either way, M&A videos can include an announcement, a post-merger integration plan, post-merger integration progress, or updates on culture change.
See how Actavis, did it.
Actavis was successful in highlighting all the positive effects of the merger in this video.
Even the title ‘Twice As’ paints a picture of a better future and urges the employees and stakeholders to see how this merger would enrich the company’s services.
3. Partnership video
Businesses from similar industries often team up to find innovative solutions to problems. These collective ventures can be highlighted using partnership videos.
Externally, these videos establish industry connections and authority while internally, they are used as company updates and a means of employee encouragement.
Here’s a video we made for the Exxon Mobil and WinGD partnership.
This corporate video is a great example of simplifying complex concepts through animation!
4. Crisis communication videos
An important part of internal comms is crisis communication. Videos for crisis communication can feature messages from CEOs reassuring the teams about their personal and job security, updated modus operandi, and safety measures.
For external corporate communication, these videos could include a message for the clients that their services won’t be affected or updating them on new company policies.
This is a crisis communication video by the CEO of Royal Caribbean Cruises. In the face of Covid-19, the cruise ship businesses have taken one of the strongest hits. So naturally, clients and employees are panicking.
This isn’t a high-quality video but has all the other elements done right. Firstly, the CEO has a very calming tone of voice and the tropical setting with a cruise ship in the backdrop was chosen strategically.
Its powerful script is written in a light-hearted manner with multiple business-appropriate metaphors like “it seemed the rough seas will never end” and “we’ve sailed through rough waters like that before”. The subtle humor undertones are also key in achieving the desired impact.
“And now make your mother proud and go wash your hands!”
Related: Asynchronous vs Synchronous Video for Internal Communication
5. Employee engagement video
Human resource departments in all types of organizations continuously work to keep employees at all levels engaged.
Employee engagement videos are used to push everyone to do better, participate, lead, and work harmoniously for the greater good of the company.
Check out this video we made.
Delivering a seamless and simplified message was our priority and the client was all smiles after watching this.
6. CSR videos
Corporate Social Responsibility is a major part of corporate communications. It’s how businesses, big and small, showcase how they are giving back to their communities.
CSR videos highlight their social accountability to the public and important stakeholders. These usually feature the company’s charity and philanthropic ventures.
World-renowned toy brand Legos talks about its partnership with World Wildlife Fund in this video.
As Legos are made of plastic, their production has a significant impact on the environment.
This video highlights Lego’s efforts to adopt more environmentally friendly production practices including the establishment of two wind farms to power their manufacturing plants and half a million European households.
The video banks on Lego’s core value of ‘building’ to set up the script and has a cinematic ‘right in the feels’ kind of vibe.
And because climate change, sustainability, and green energy is a hot subject for millennials, it just works!
Related: How Nonprofit Organizations Can Benefit from Video Marketing
7. Event videos
Corporate event videos are how companies establish thought leadership. They focus on an organization’s progressive efforts for the industry and showcase its connections and partners.
Internal events videos usually recap a company’s leisure and networking events. These include company vacations, day outs, meet and greets, and much more.
Check out this stellar event video for INBOUND 2016 by HubSpot.
We have one word for this event video: “COOL!”
INBOUND is an annual event where businesses come together to discuss and celebrate progressive marketing techniques and successes.
This video highlights the fun activities, keynote speakers, success stories, and inspirational celebrities all while making us dance along to the music.
Oh, how we wish we could have been there!
Related: The Best Events for Video Content Creators in 2020
(Please note: Many of the events mentioned in the linked post above have been cancelled or postponed due to COVID-19)
8. Company culture videos
Culture videos are created to lure in new talent or to introduce new hires to the company’s social dynamics. They often follow ‘a day in the life of’ format. Features include the office environment, décor, lunch hour happenings, fun activities like in-house sports and entertainment centers, and other facilities.
Considering that people spend long hours at work, the purpose of these videos is to make the newbies feel at home and ensure that the company takes care of its employees.
Additionally, these videos focus on current employees’ testimonials, how they go about their jobs, and what working there means to them.
Our survey showed that 52% of people feel that they trust a company more after watching a video that features their team.
See this example of Zynga’s company culture video.
We love how it starts with a very relatable conundrum. No modern tech worker’s mom understands what they really do. But hey, as long as you’re having fun at work…
Read in-depth: How to Make Engaging Culture Videos
9. Training videos
Businesses are constantly looking to upscale their workforce. Training videos are a great tool to make professional learning fun and engaging.
Moreover, they’re used to teach employees how to use new software and company tools.
The use of video for educational purposes makes sense as our survey revealed that 72% of the audience prefers watching training/tutorial videos compared to reading material.
We loved working on this training video project.
From character design to script to soundtrack, keeping the animation clean and simple was key so the message wouldn’t get lost in the special effects.
Overall, our client dubbed this training video a success!
Read in-depth: How to Use Video Content for Employee Onboarding and Training
10. Testimonial videos
Prospective clients and employees naturally go on a testimonial hunt before deciding on a service. 62% of the people we surveyed feel that video testimonials help them in making a buying decision.
Which is why companies invest in testimonial videos as their corporate communication strategy.
See how Dropbox established its credibility through this video.
Featuring clients from a variety of industries was a great idea. It clarifies that this service is not just for tech and digital companies. Rather, it projects Dropbox for Business as a wholesome solution that any business would want in their solutions deck.
Read in-depth: How to Make Awesome Client Video Testimonials
11. Promo videos
Corporate videos are not totally devoid of direct promotional content. Companies do promote their B2B solutions as a part of their corporate communication strategy.
We had the chance to work on a promo video for NewsPress, an initiative by NewsCorp that optimizes WordPress for editorial teams across numerous newspapers and media outlets.
Our goal was to simultaneously project the progressiveness of the software while maintaining the classic appeal of traditional journalism. We feel like we nailed this one.
Read in-depth: Promo Video Guide 101 — Master the Art of Creating Promotional Videos
Corporate videos are a feather in your corporate communication cap. They help you humanize your business for your employees and clients alike and give you the perceptive edge in the industry.
We at MotionCue love creating engaging corporate videos of all kinds. If you’re looking to catalyze your corporate communication strategy with videos, get in touch with us here.