The #GlobalPOV Project Viral Video for UC Berkeley
This eye-opening project has been ongoing for over a year and has recently been featured in Forbes, The Huffington Post and Upworthy. The piece was produced for The #GlobalPOV Project at the Blum Center for Developing Economics at the University of California, Berkley. It’s turned into a viral video while making it’s rounds via Facebook – and for good reason. The video has been shared throughout social networks and has received recognition for the content and artful storytelling. The viral video uses unique storytelling tools to combine critical social theory, improvised art and digital media to explore innovative ways of thinking about poverty, inequality and undertaking poverty action. It’s a great way to learn about these issues while also enjoying an entertaining viral video.
There are a total of eight episodes with number eight in post and an intro in the works. I asked Daniel Lafrentz, the director, about his relationship with the project and he said, “Now that I know so much about the inequality, I cant shut my eyes to it. I really believe in it. Working with such eye opening content was interesting and figuring out how to artfully represent it was just as exciting. ”
It was a challenge to figure out different ways to represent the ideas besides just drawings. In “Is Privilege Poverty” a game called Bagatelle was built to demonstrate global poverty. Fortune cookies were made to tell why some programs don’t work in “Who is Dependent on Welfare.” In “Are Slums the Global Urban Future” a magic eight ball was used to answer questions before being turned into a wrecking ball for inequality.
Check out the other six episodes below and stay tuned for #8!
We just got back from a whirlwind trip to NYC. We can’t tall you what we were filming for yet, but here is a sneak peak photo from us on the streets of Brooklyn NY. We were filming on the new RED Scarlet cameras.
In all fairness, the role of a TV advert is to attempt to change the way viewers feel, think or act by capturing the audience’s undivided attention. Moreover, its purpose is to leave a mark in the viewer’s mind and not to be erased by the next TV ad that pops on the screen. Even though people watch TV on a daily basis and hence, see hundreds of adverts, the truth is that most don’t remember much about them.
However, every now and then, television is “blessed” with one commercial that is able to achieve its goals and even more so, it later on becomes part of the social landscape. Let’s find out how TV ads can break through the clutter to become a phenomenon.
- It provides the solution to a common problem
In order to provide a solution to a problem in a manner that will appeal to your audience, first you need to understand the difference between a feature and a benefit. While the feature refers to something palpable, describing the characteristics of the product, the benefit is associated with the item’s value and the way it can improve the viewers’ lives. This is why it’s important to focus on the product’s benefits and use its features to support your claims.
- It prompts the audience to act
In spite of the fact that you caught and maintained the attention of the audience, you still have to determine them to take action as otherwise it will negatively reflect on your sales numbers. Irrespective of whether you provide them with your phone number, invite them to your store or direct them to your website, make sure to let your viewers know what they should do next.
- It is unique and original
If you want people to remember your company and your product, then you need to stay away from those old and boring clichés. Frankly, everyone is tired of the ads featuring the latest brand of automobiles driven at high speeds up a lush green hill or over the winding road. Differentiate yourself from your competition by stating what sets you apart from them and highlighting these aspects.
- It targets the right audience
Even though your goal is to get your advert exposure and to make it seen by as many viewers as possible, buying airtime during the busiest hours of the day is not always the best approach. In fact, all you’ll manage to achieve is spend a lot of your hard-earned cash. In turn, you’ll receive suboptimal sales. Consequentially, you should map your target audience and identify the best media source to reach viewers who are actually interested in what you have to offer.
- It produces an element of trust
As any marketing professional knows, any type of publicity – positive or negative – is still publicity. Once the people catch a glimpse of a product, they involuntarily want to take a closer look. If a person is exposed to a commercial regularly, then they will be able to recognize the product easier, while the manufacturer becomes more familiar to them. Both recognition and familiarity breed trust. Consequentially, it boosts sales too if you have managed the trust factor to perfection!
It is said that you can’t escape the things you fear the most and marketing industry is living proof of that. In fact, it’s no secret to anyone that after being constantly bombarded with hundreds of commercials on a daily basis, the average American viewer has become an advert savvy.
A recent survey carried by the reputable InsightsOne has established that more than half the viewers watching TV regularly perceive the commercials the most offensive aired programs. Interestingly enough, people aren’t actually fed up with the advertisements themselves, but rather with the fact that the commercials they watch are not relevant to them, as individuals.
The immediate solution
Considering that viewers don’t mind hearing about new products and services and prefer knowing why and how those products will benefit them, correcting this issue doesn’t seem too difficult at first. To put it simply, marketing professionals can help ads rise up to the viewers’ reasonable expectations by:
- Coming up with commercials that are able to resonate with various different groups.
- Re-targeting the old adverts to different groups and measuring the impact.
But, there’s always a “but”…
In spite of the fact that nowadays marketers can address commercial skipping relatively quickly, it is important to note that the aforementioned solutions will not work if you got your main audience demos wrong from the start. What makes matters worse is that various reports indicate that the viewers’ demographics are changing rather rapidly, thanks to the advancements in the digital industry. Because most people in the US own a HDTV, it is only natural that they seek out information that is both culturally and digitally relevant to them.
Culturally: It’s time to rethink the program grid
The United States long-term demographic trends and particularly the fact that multicultural segments of the population will see a significant growth in the next decade is a well-known aspect for any respectable TV station. Therefore, if they want to keep the pace with their viewers’ preferences, the stations have to re-evaluate their current programs and make the necessary changes towards becoming appealing to a multicultural audience.
Granted, adapting and even changing your entire program grid so that it can span across a broad spectrum of audiences is not easy. However, it also not impossible either, especially if TV stations work with reputable video production houses and start building suitable promotions and ads at local level.
Digitally: Reaching out to viewers via the right media channel
Not surprising at all, the cinematic-like TV displays and the tablet/smartphone screens are the top two favorite media channels among American viewers. Innovative, versatile and keeping up with the latest media technologies, the modern HDTV is predicted to be a stable and dominant presence in the home of the average viewer, as long as they receive content that is up to the date with the tech (the 1.4 HDMI interface).
As far as the tablet and smartphone screens are concerned, experts claim they are trickier and are going to present more challenges, especially for TV stations that will need to figure out a new way to package their data so it can reach the desired audience.
In spite of the fact you can’t produce quality videos and films without high end equipment, the truth is that you don’t really need to have an astronomical budget in order to achieve this goal. However, the video production process is not exactly easy mainly because you will be faced with several problems on the set once you start shooting the video. While you can’t avoid all of these issues – think what will happen if the main actor gets sick for instance – most problems can be averted if you are farsighted. Let’s explore the most common problems that may arise and what you can do to fix them.
- The video exceeds 1:30 minutes
As a rule of thumb, the longer the video, the less inclined the viewer wants to watch it. Frankly, you can’t blame them since most videos that exceed their designated time frame are filled with superfluous comments and irrelevant content. Fixing this implies creating a list of the facts that you want in your video and leave it to the production company to edit them properly.
- Mediocre cutaways
Although you’re trying to provide your viewers with as much info as necessary in a short period of time, abrupt leaps from text with music to graphics with a voice-over will ultimately result in a chaotic and difficult to follow video. Not to mention that there’s also the risk of slipping some unwanted sounds or pictures in your capture. This is why you should always tape several extra footages, so you have something efficient to patch up the aforementioned errors.
- Confusing storyline
The fact that you know all the ins and outs of your product doesn’t automatically mean your audience is familiar with them as well. Jumping from concept to concept or using acronyms nobody has heard of are surefire ways to determine viewers to skip your video. This is why the importance of coming up with a clear, concise and comprehensive storyline before entering the actual production phase cannot be stressed enough.
- Inappropriate lighting
In the event that you don’t have the appropriate amount of lighting on the set, then chances are that the computer will interpret different colors as similar during the post-production phase. The worst part is that this problem can’t really be addressed during the editing phase, even if you add more light to the picture. Luckily, this predicament can be resolved by attaching an extra light to the camera. However, keep in mind that this solution only applies to close-up shooting (up to 6 feet away from the lens).
- Wobbly imaging
While on the set the video you’re filming might look good, chances are the camera is not steady if you’re holding it in your hands. Even though for the untrained eye things look perfectly normal, the wobbly images will become noticeable when you will sit down to edit the video. Without denying that you can correct the unsteady imaging during the post-production phase, don’t forget that you’ll need a top of the line computer and a lot of patience. This is also why you should seriously consider investing in a tripod.
If you’re an insomniac who “enjoys” spending most of his night time watching infomercials, then you’ve probably seen it all. From vacuums that make hair cutting at home less messy to toilet paper that can extend your reach and the notorious Poop-Freeze that simplifies cleaning your beloved pet’s droppings, chances are that you are not easily impressed with the latest infomercial products that are guaranteed to simplify your life. Granted there are many strange products out there presented in the most ridiculous and inappropriate ways. Still, not all infomercials are about bad products and failures. Following is a list of the most appreciated ones:
- Snuggie, the wearable blanket
Chances are you’ve lived through one of those freezing nights during the cold season when the only thing you want to do is sit under your warm and cozy blanket in front of the TV. What do you do when you need to reach the remote? Simple, you purchase a wearable blanket that allows you to reach for the remote without having to make any compromises. With 26 million sales and counting, Snuggie is by far the most popular infomercial product sold by As Seen On TV in the past 5 years.
- PedEgg foot grater
Although we don’t recommended you watch the infomercial if you have a weak stomach, the truth is that the PedEgg foot grater is another popular product that has managed to sell 45 million items in a little over one year. The highlight of the eggs and what we think convinced most people into acquiring it could be the “no mess” part, as the dead skin is securely stored into a special container you can clean later.
- The Fridge Locker
If you work in an office with a shared brake room, then chances are you were already visited by your friendly sticky finger coworker at least once. Well, while you can come up with various arguments that this is just an honest mistake, how about you make sure it doesn’t happen again. Introducing the Fridge Locker, the ultimate food security system that will keep all your “food testing experts” from work at bay!
- Pillow Pets
Perhaps what we enjoy most about infomercial is their ability to make everything seem so remarkable. The best example here are the popular Pillow Pets, which as their name suggests are pillow and pets combined in a single product concept. Before you discard the idea as completely childish, keep in mind the over 20 million Pillow Pets have already been sold worldwide, all thanks to a short and innovative infomercial.
- Total Gym
In the event that you are trying to stay in shape or want to shed some pound, but don’t really want to leave the comfort of your home, then here is the perfect solution for you. Meet Total Gym , the ultimate workout system that is guaranteed to help you achieve your goal without having to go through the hassle of visiting your local gym. Maybe we can blame it on Chuck Norris, but so far this infomercial has managed to bring over $1 billion into its developer’s pockets.