Social Content –> Shaping Content Creation?

People want to find media that they can identify…content that makes sense in their lives. As I think through this lens…I have been reshaping my opinions when it comes to the value of video production.

I love big cameras, pretty pictures, the HD experience…etc. But, is all this necessary in our world of social content? Is multi-purposing content from that video shoot with the Red Camera necessary?

Have you watched American Idol this season? It is a new face with the addition of Harry Connick, Jr…a new tone and lots more stories. Did you also notice the production value of the video content being used. Lots more user-based content captured using mobile devices. The opening of American Idol has leveraged contestant video content from their mobile devices as a major part of the opening sequences.

Have you also noticed camera angles focusing on faces, isolating shots that make you feel closer to the contestant, visually connecting the audience to the potential storyline?

Production value has so much to do with visual delivery setting tone, visual appeal, ethic, mood…etc.

Think about the last video shoot you have been a part of recently.

  • Did you have beautiful lighting? Did the interview subject look off-camera slightly?
  • Was the lighting focused on the person and less on the background, creating complete visual interest on the subject?
  • Was the person highlighted with lighting or the fact they used professional lighting highlight?
  • Was the background behind the subject visually engaging or created barriers to the conversation?

In the social world…I have began to recognize the value of advising groups to create content specifically for the medium. There is a time and place for each style of production. There is value for that high-end video shoot with great lighting, great sound quality, great camera angles. There is also value in creating an experience that generates an approachable conversation.

Let’s take a video interview with a physician based on a topical item like flu shots or even something cancer related. Do you need high-end lighting, great microphones, an appropriate clinical background. Think about the from the audience’s perspective. When they go talk to a physician in their office, do they carry a light kit and a microphone? Do they have these “tools” & “strategies” when asking this physician about cancer or that flu shot when sitting or standing across them in their office?

The point here…sometimes it is better to reduce the production enhancement and make the situation feel relevant in our day-to-day lives…visually relevant.

Google+ Hangouts (web video calls) are helping us think through these opportunities. Setting up situations visually where the person seems approachable.  Think about a Google+ Hangout. You feel like you are talking directly to a person.

Here is my point. Should the physician look off-camera interview style or right at the camera. This simple visual cue is huge for the audience. Remember…a conversation is not a question by question interview…it is a conversation.

There are specific ways to make a Google+ Hangout a little more approachable than the look of a webcam and a microphone/earpiece hanging from the person on the other side of the camera. Camera and streaming technology has increased where the image looks nice.

Here is my point…creating social content has everything to do with visual cues. Sometimes that $50K video shoot just does not translate into content meant for certain social media contexts.