Some catching up here, but the video project I produced debuted a couple of weeks ago and was a big hit. As part of the Municipal Pension Plan‘s annual general meeting, my team and I created three short, commercial-style videos for the pension plan’s board of trustees. The videos are meant to inform members of the pension plan about its value. Each video takes on a different angle and audience and in 2.5 minutes–and with simple, plain language–explains why being a member of the Municipal Pension Plan is a good thing.
Anyway, as I say, the videos are a big hit, and not just for our clients. They were recently showcased as part of a presentation given at a pensions conference in eastern Canada and the feedback was extremely positive. We’ve had requests for DVD copies and people wondering when they’ll be posted to our website.
It’s no wonder to me that these videos are popular. They are unique and completely atypical for the industry. This is pensions we’re talking about. To get people to watch–much less click away having absorbed some key messages–we couldn’t just produce the usual talking-head piece. And believe me, in our research, other pension administrators have posted classic talking-head videos that run up to 45 minutes! People simply won’t spend long stretches at their monitor squinting at another boring video about a topic that, unless they are in their fifties, they likely don’t spend much time thinking about anyway.
We wanted our videos to move, to by dynamic and engaging, keeping our primary delivery method–the web–in mind as we planned and shot. We kept our shots tight, the language simple and quick and the scenery changing. We also took into account the various visual cues that would help support our message. For example, we used, as much as possible, real locations. We wanted to reinforce through our choice of background that these were authentic Municipal Pension Plan locations. Our goal was that when pension plan members watched they would intuitively recognize the locations as “belonging” to them, thereby strengthening the video’s value message since they not only hear the actor’s words but also see their own world reflected back. Another small, but meaningful, touch was with the use of colour. The plan’s official colour is green (the actual Pantone number escapes me), so we made sure that our actor wore a green blouse beneath her sweater. Not a big deal, but often it’s the details that make something truly stand out.
It’s also been gratifying to watch the videos catch on throughout our organization. They are being requested for branch staff meetings and as supporting material for meetings with employers who are considering joining the plan. They are beginning to have a life of their own, which is exactly what we had planned for. It’s exciting to see others begin to recognize the possibilities of this medium.
The videos are not yet online, but will be soon. When they are I’ll be sure to link to them.