News Articles

How to Succeed With Online Video in the Multiplatform World

6/18/2013 02:15:18 PM Eastern

In marketing, nothing is more important than connecting with
your audience. And video is the most potent communications medium available.
But knowing where to reach the right people today with online video is a
challenge, and knowing how to craft an engaging message requires more
than a one-size-fits-all approach. New production and distribution solutions
are required.

The good news is that there are more options than ever to
approach your audience correctly. A recent video production project for Connecticut's
CT Energy demonstrates that the process of creating a compelling message—and
crafting a creative strategy for getting that message in front of the right
people—goes hand in hand.

When CT Energy was developing Smart-E—a statewide outreach
program that connects homeowners with affordable financing, enabling them to
make their homes more energy efficient and environmentally friendly—management
asked Invisible Light Network to help get the word out using video.

We immediately recognized that the CT Energy project faced
two challenges: explaining a complex program involving financing, and the need
to reach widely-differing stakeholders with the message—especially
Connecticut homeowners—at the right place and time.

From experience, we knew the most effective approach would
be to lead with great design and animation, rather than a typical live action
video testimonial, which is a much over-used approach. Animation enabled us to
seamlessly mix relatable character moments with easy to digest graphic
explanations of complex topics.

But we also recognized that the typical 30-second PSA spot
could not convey the full story, nor would it effectively reach Connecticut
homeowners. So, in parallel to the production design process, we started to
develop an alternative outreach plan which focused on connecting with
hyper-local blogs and Twitter feeds, particularly Connecticut bloggers who
write about local news, real estate and sustainability issues.

Animation Engages at All Levels

To make the CT Energy story accessible to all of their
stakeholders, we created a visual language with a bright, bold color palette,
naturalistic animation style and a focus on characters and neighborhoods to
help homeowners understand that these changes would help not just them, but the
larger community as well.

The design language communicates the message of Smart-E just
as much as the voiceover; in fact, both support each other, allowing CT Energy
to make a lasting impression as people perk up and pay attention.

For their part, CT Energy's marketing department reached out
to their partner banks and contractors asking them to host and share the video
with their customers.

Contractors can share the video with homeowners on a laptop
as they visit the home to discuss potential projects, and banks are hosting the
video on their own sites. This targeted approach works for everyone.

Homeowners get a chance to hear about a program that can
save them money at the right time. Smart-E's partners get a valuable tool to
help their sales efforts and CT Energy raises its own profile.

Invisible Light Network's approach helped Smart-E succeed
and, we hope, will help to make Connecticut a greener, more sustainable place
to live.

CT Energy is only the latest organization we've helped to
communicate important messages through alternative online video productions. We
also helped UNICEF with their campaign against childhood drowning, and Starwood
Hotels and Resorts to educate employees about the LEED program and benefits of
sustainable design.

In these three very diverse cases, original online video
provided the storytelling power to engage audiences in enjoyable and memorable
content.

Examples of projects mentioned in this case study:

Smart-E: http://invisiblelightnetwork.com/?p=1021
UNICEF: http://invisiblelightnetwork.com/?p=578
Starwood: http://invisiblelightnetwork.com/?p=48

Elliot
Blanchard is a director, designer and animator. His company, Invisible Light
Network, is an integrated creative studio involved in unique motion design,
interactive work and short films. Invisible Light Network's clients include
UNICEF, Vitamin Water and GE.

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