Archive for category: Video Tips

bad motion graphics 2+2+5

Motion Graphics Tips – How NOT to Use Them

In our last blog, we talked about using motion graphics to grab your target audience and make your message memorable.  We also described the many types of motion graphics. Graphics are an amazing way to spice up a video production, but if you don’t create just the right type of script to accompany those “wow” animations, you’re missing the boat. Believe it or not, there really is a “right” type of script. Great motion graphics have a style and pacing, and the script must compliment them. There are three common mistakes to avoid when scripting motion graphics projects.

Mistake #1: Using Formal Language

This is a mistake that applies to all types of video, but especially to motion graphic videos. Video scripts are designed to be heard, not read. Using copy created for print can sound stilted and clunky. Think about how you speak. Most of us don’t speak in complete sentences. We speak conversationally.  That’s what you need to achieve with your script. Additionally, motion graphics lend themselves to a lighter, sometimes humorous tone. Take advantage of it, if appropriate, when you script.

Mistake #2: Using Too Many Words

Good motion graphics tell a visual story. The script should support the story, but you don’t need to say it all. The combination of visuals and narrative is powerful. For example, if you are talking about ten different services you provide, you don’t need to say every one of them. The visual is there. Simply say something like, “No matter what type of service you need, we’ll be there.” When it comes to words, less is more. If you load the script with too much content, you slow the pace of the video.

Mistake #3: Not thinking visually

Whenever we script motion graphics for advertising, video case studies, social media shorts, or other projects, we think about the visuals we’ll use. If you don’t think visually, you may write too much or too little. If you have initial ideas for visuals, you can work with your graphic designer to expand them. This makes it easier to execute the project and provides a tighter connection between the narrative and the motion graphics.

We love writing for motion graphics projects because, in so many ways, there are fewer constraints. With the proper use of motion graphics, you don’t need to worry about having enough video, or video that matches the script. You can design a complete project and execute it. All you need to do is get creative.

motion graphic of a hand writing

How Using Motion Graphics Can Help Grow Your Business

Ever tried to explain a complex or abstract idea, process, or service?

Need to demonstrate or show something that doesn’t exist…or at least not yet?

Want to communicate a story, but can’t get video?

Motion graphics is a technique that brings your message to life in a creative, dynamic, and visual way. They grab your audience and make your message memorable (think spectacular movies, larger than life effects, or fun storytelling).

There’s a lot of confusion about what motion graphics are. This isn’t surprising because there are many types of motion graphics.  Essentially, motion graphics are animated videos. This animation can include 2D or 3D elements and what you can animate is broad. It can be:

  • Icons
  • Graphs and charts
  • CAD drawings
  • Character animation
  • Original or stock illustrations
  • …and so much more.

To make it even more complicated, motion graphics can stand alone to tell a story or be layered over video to make the invisible…visible. Either way, motion graphics make complex information simple to understand. Take boring facts and figures and create excitement. Engage customers and help build additional brand awareness.

At CK & CO, we have the expertise to create motion graphics for advertising, video case studies, social media shorts, and more. In fact, we have a team to concept, script, and execute highly complex projects all in-house. Fun fact: our senior designer, John Cuevas, has answered more than 3000 questions about Adobe After Effects on the popular site Creative Cow (yes that is a real site) and is considered one of the most knowledgeable people in the industry.

Do you get the feeling we like motion graphics?  You are right, but these are not just any graphics. The key is to start with the very best raw assets that have style, your style. The possibilities are endless. Your motion graphics can be clean and sophisticated, techy, or whimsical. They need to fit right in with your company brand. No cookie-cutter graphics allowed! Then the graphics must MOVE. That seems obvious, but pacing is critical, not too fast so the message slips by unnoticed and not too slow or the viewer will lose interest.

There are other reasons to like motion graphics. They are timeless. You don’t need to worry about your company spokesperson leaving you for the competition, so you need to create a new video. Animated characters are loyal, and they don’t age. You also have greater control and the flexibility to design and execute a storyboard exactly. You can control the weather…which you can’t do when shooting live video. Of course, you can also create the perfect storm graphically, if needed.

Finally, you can craft a great story and use music and sound effects to blend in perfect concert with the graphics. Convinced yet? Motion graphics can be used for longer-form videos or social media. Want to be super smart? Create a long version and repurpose the assets for shorter pieces.

Ready to explore how you can use motion graphics to create more engaging and impactful video content? Connect with us.

video for business on the web

Why Video? Here are three Great Reasons

Everywhere you look big brands are using video for business. From video on websites, social media outlets, plasma screens in waiting areas, trade shows, training rooms, and beyond there are many ways to leverage video. Still, some organizations are skeptical. Some think it is trendy… but not for them. Others love the idea, but believe it is too expensive, and while the use of video is not new, it is growing faster than expected.

According to Cisco, internet video traffic globally will grow 4-fold from 2015 to 2020, a compound annual growth rate of 31%.

And, according to Wyzowl, 63% of businesses use video for marketing.

That’s a lot of video and people are watching. On their desktops, smartphones, tablets and other mobile devices.  Why? There are three very good reasons.

The Human Touch

In a world where technology rules, video can feature the people behind the products and services. It lets the viewer experience the sense of pride an employee has when serving the customer. It can feature real people who use your product and let them gush about the value. It can show how your team solved a problem and created a solution with impressive results; prevented injuries, improved productivity, reduced costs. People like to do business with people they like. Video is an opportunity to build your brand and let your personality shine.

Engaging Content

With video, you can take a “dry” subject and make it interesting. When using video for business promotion, you can demonstrate something, not just talk about it. Imagine seeing a product made right before your eyes or learning how something works or how to accomplish a task. The popular “For Dummies” books have video as a component for this very reason. Instead of reading about how to set up Alexa, you can watch a video. Want to know how to duplicate a great Keto recipe? Get into the kitchen with us and follow along step by step.


At CK and CO, we have created countless videos to help engage audiences. And, it’s not just demonstration. There are other ways to encourage engagement. Create a quiz. Use props. Share fun or humorous stories. Video production takes the shackles off of your normal content marketing strategies and truly lets you get creative!

Video is Easy to Access

You might wonder, why use video in your social media marketing? The answer is twofold. First, the proliferation of mobile devices, like smartphones and tablets, is driving viewing.  Sit in an airport or on a plane and observe the number of people watching video.  In a restaurant, look around and see how many people are glued to a device. Most are not reading, they are watching. Maybe that’s because it’s easier to see a video than read small print.  In fact, when offered the choice of reading or viewing a video, 59% of senior executives chose video.  The second reason is that today’s video platforms; like YouTube, Facebook, Instagram and others, make it easy and cost effective to distribute video. Just think about your own video consumption. Not everyone realizes this, but YouTube is actually the second largest search engine behind Google, which also prominently displays video results within their main results pages. Considering how easy it is to search and find content, why should it be your competitors’ content that potential customers end up seeing? Why not make it your message that stands out?

The human touch, engaging content, and easy access – three good reasons to consider creating video content. One final thought. Video for business is an important tool, but it only works if it is well produced and perfectly suited to your audience. Be sure the quality and content are a good reflection of your organization. No one likes bad video.

recruitment video hiring sign

How Recruitment Videos Can Help You Land Talent

Recruiting in today’s business marketplace is a tough job…and it is getting tougher! Experienced employees are retiring in growing numbers. The digital revolution is changing the way we work. And, team members are getting more and more diverse as there are more generations working side by side than ever before. When it comes to attracting top talent, different generations respond to different efforts, but adding video to your recruitment toolkit will resonate with potential employees of any age.

Don’t take our word for it! Check out Monster’s 2019 State of the Candidate survey. It found that “94% of 18-24-year-old candidates—or Gen Z—agree that a video of a recruiter would help them better understand a job opportunity.” Here are a few ideas to help you create the best recruitment videos.

Be Specific about Purpose

Recruitment videos can be created for a certain job, department, or general hiring efforts. Each requires a different approach and content. Video for a specific job will have in-depth content and list requirements. A broader piece will keep information at a higher level and give a feel for the company’s brand and culture.

Know What and Who to Include

Imagine being able to hear about the job, company, or the culture firsthand from an executive or HR professional. Think about showcasing your work environment, facility, or the community your organization is located in. Consider highlighting current employees by sharing their experience working for the company, their career path, or promotions.

The best recruitment videos give potential employees the chance to truly feel what it’s like to work at your company, so they can feel comfortable and know what they’re getting into before the first interview.   If they’re interested, they engage further. If not, you save valuable time because they have self-selected out.

Expand the Use of Video

If created well, recruitment videos can also be used as advertising on social media outlets. Video shorts can be attention getters and link viewers to more in-depth content. Longer recruitment videos can be cut into shorter sections, leveraging the same content for a variety of audiences.

You can also interview potential candidates with video. There are many options – from SKYPE and Go to Meeting, to WebEx and more! With video, you get an idea of a candidate’s communication skills and personality without the inconvenience of travel. And, unlike a phone conference, you can see if they have good eye contact, are nervous, or relaxed. Finally, you can use video as part of the application process. Ask the potential employee to submit a short video detailing their interest in the job and how their qualifications fit the position.

Hagerty Insurance understands the benefits of effective communication in an organization and used recruitment video to do just that. They reached out to CK and CO to create video shorts of employees to amp up recruitment efforts for their call center. They also use video to explain the hiring process and ask job seekers to submit a video application to respond to openings.

Additional Benefits

There are many benefits to using recruitment videos. One positive effect is that they give you the opportunity to go global – reach a much broader audience and greater talent pool without increasing costs. And, as the use of mobile devices explodes, video is accessible anytime, anywhere. Cisco reports nearly 79% of the world’s mobile data traffic will be video by 2022.

At CK and CO, we work to make the process of creating the best recruitment videos simple. Whether you are a small business or a large corporation, we can help you think through the content to include, the ideal on-camera participants, or locations. Together, we’ll find the proper length of the communication and the best way to leverage recruitment videos for website and social media.

Want to find out more about recruitment videos and other corporate video production options? Call us and let us think with you.

shooting a video case study

10 Tips for Effective Video Case Studies

Everyone loves a good story. Maybe that’s why video case studies are popular. Case studies are stories that give us insight, provide a behind the scenes look, and introduce us to real people at a real company. Many businesses use case studies to show how their products and services are making an impact on their customers. They can document new product development, or show how a company has made improvements, changed corporate culture, or leveraged resources for the benefit of a community. The possibilities are endless, but there is one formula for creating the best video case studies, proven to engage.

Begin by drawing the viewer in with a brief but compelling introduction to “main characters” – that can be a company, organization, team or an individual. Next comes the challenge or opportunity, followed by the solution and the results. Sounds simple, right?  Not exactly. Many video case studies fall short when it comes to capturing attention. So, what makes a great video case study?  Here are 10 video case study tips to make your next production more impactful.

Find an Engaging Story

Find a story with depth to carry the video. We have all been to movies or read a book where the plot is thin or non-existent. A video case study needs to have a plot. It can’t be business as usual; something needs to happen, or no one will care. Is there a problem that was solved? Did you find a better way to accomplish a task? Break into new markets?  It helps if the story is about a company or individual whose name people know. Of course, that might not be possible. An interesting, smaller company or unique person can also be engaging.

Camera-friendly Interviewees

Video case studies often include real people. The engineer or scientist who made an amazing discovery. The shop floor worker who found a better way to make a product. The customer service representative who solved a problem. People do great work, but can they be engaging on camera? Look for those who are excited to tell their story. Watch to see if they have good eye contact and answer questions concisely. Most people need some coaching, so be sure you have a professional interviewer. They will put people at ease and know when they hear that perfect soundbite.

Choose the Right Format

There are several formats that can work to make great case studies. Interesting interviews can carry a story by weaving them together. This requires a well-thought-out storyline and a producer who knows how to get interviews that tell the complete story.

A second option is to combine narrative and soundbites. We pick the most interesting soundbites and then write narrative transitions as needed. Narrative can be helpful because it shortens up and crystallizes what might be lengthy explanations by interviewees.

The final option is all narrative. This gives you complete control of the story and the video supports it.

Great Visuals

You know the old saying, “a picture is worth a thousand words?”  It’s true.  Sometimes it’s easy to capture visuals. People working on cool machines. A bustling office or factory.  A time-lapse of something being built or installed. Think about the visual opportunities you have to support the content of the interviews. At CK and CO, we can help decide what to shoot… and how to “make video” when the settings are limited.

Use Motion Graphics

Some video case studies are about concepts or elements that cannot be seen. Take, for example, the transfer of data to the cloud. You can’t see it, but you know it happens. Motion graphics can illustrate things we can’t see or visualize complex processes and procedures. They can also spice up videos to make them even more appealing.

Impressive Results

Viewers love “wow” statistics. As you tell your story, it’s important to share tangible results. For example:

Did you reduce costs by 30% or increase productivity?

Did you get a return on your investment in half the projected time?

Have you improved employee retention by 20%?

You get the idea. Brag about what you have achieved. Sometimes, it is too soon to know the results of your story. In that case, you might include a vision statement about what you hope to achieve.

High content. Short timeframe.

We live in a world where Twitter and Instagram have influenced how we consume information. Whether or not you use these tools the mindset today is, “give it to me now, give it to me fast and don’t make me think about it.” As a result, your viewers expect a video case study that provides high content in a short timeframe.  Every word is important, and when coupled with great visuals, you can get your message across in far less time than you might think.

Create Alternate Versions of the Same Story

Meaty stories beg for more time. The truth is that audiences vary in how much time they are willing to devote to a video. At CK & CO, we often create several versions of a case study using the same raw video. We might create a longer piece (5:00-6:00) for use in a face-to-face opportunity. That same video content can be cut down to a shorter video (2:30-3:00) for use on a web site. One length does not fit all. If you have spent the time and money to capture the story, consider your options.

Tease Your Video Case Study

Just as filmmakers cut movie trailers to generate interest in a film, you can “tease” your video case study. We often pull short compelling soundbites and package them into media shorts. These :15-:30 videos end with a call to action to view the entire video.

Add a Whitepaper

While it’s true that many people prefer video to print, don’t miss an opportunity. Create a short whitepaper to accompany your video case study. The whitepaper should not be a transcript of the video, but instead should complement it. This is the place for highly technical elements and background information that does not translate well to video.

Video case studies are an effective tool for engaging potential customers and telling your company’s story. So, consider how you might use them to tell your story.