By Editor Morten B. Reitoft
We've just published a film about Bennett Graphic's new HP Indigo 100K. Not a very long time ago, HP introduced the latest generation of Indigos at a virtual event in Israel, where Alon Bar-Shany presented all the newest and latest.
Like the rest of the world, we couldn't travel, so we had to re-invent ourselves. First and foremost, we rapidly developed new formats that work in a time where we can't travel and where face-to-face meetings are limited. 'Over the Skype' was the first format introduced, and with more than 50 films/conversations produced, and more than 15.000 new viewers, we found that a virtual format could work. However, quality! The quality of the audio is mostly ok. The quality of the video is mostly not so good, so the content had to be really good. Interviews that last 20-40 minutes, obviously, require quite some time to consume, and many will find that the length is too long. However, we got loads of positive feedback from people telling us how much they appreciate the content. Mike King from Eagle Systems, told me that he was listening to many of our films while driving, and others have told me that the films have been used as podcasts while doing other things. We believe in this format, and despite the technical quality issues mentioned above, we will continue producing 'Over the Skypes.'
Hereafter we decided to develop a webinar/learning/education format with shorter sessions and kind of "back to school" basic education. We did it for several reasons. First, since we genuinely want people to learn. Secondly, we need revenue to continue INKISH. We soon realized that doing webinars 3 hours daily LIVE is challenging. We invested in WebinarJam, and though it has been voted the best webinar platform, the platform has its lacks. 720p video, i.e., a few hiccups when sending out notifications and simple things like having a "lobby" is missing - and again, everything depending on bandwidth, webcam quality, and the location where the sessions are done. Again, great content, great people, and a test to find out whether this format could work. It can, and it can't - that I will write about in a separate article!
We wanted it to be better. When we reached out to Adair Hall and Adam Seiz from Bennett Graphics, we quickly decided to send them a tripod and a shotgun microphone, so we at least could improve the audio and video quality from being recorded locally.
After a few Skype sessions, we found out how we could do this remotely. In the interviews with Adair and Adam, the person not interviewed holds up a laptop with Skype, and place it next to the tripod to mimic that I was there. That worked surprisingly good - so while talking to the virtual me, a SmartPhone on a tripod and with the shotgun microphone recorded the session - being the virtual Jan.
That session took about 1-2 hours, and we did that on recording day one. After filming, Adair uploaded the film to us, so we could review, and decide on what b-rolls to record the following day. The following day we wanted to be from the production, so no sound was required. Since we also wanted the filming to be lively, the tripod was no good either. Adair duck-taped two SmartPhones together, so one could record, and the other could be Skype used as a view-finder for Jan. With this setup, Jan could remotely guide Adair on how to film the Indigo 100K, the location, the other machines, etc.
After uploading the b-roll to us - we could now combine the films from Adair and Adam, but also recordings from a previous visit we had with Bennett Graphics back last year.
The final thing we needed - was close-ups of print-samples. Adair and Adam collected a range of representative print-samples and shipped these ASAP with a courier to Sweden, where Jan could film the samples.
From here - more or business as usual - and the result. We LIKE it, and after the first week - more than 3.000 people have got an insight into Bennett Graphics and their latest investment.
[Click the image to see film]
Does this mean that we can do this instead of filming on-site as we always do? Absolutely no. First of all, the main reason why this worked so well is that we already been there. Secondly, the most important reason for visiting is not just the shooting, but also sensing the company, the people, and get the un-expected on film. We have also most likely spent more time filming on remote, so that, obviously, also is a factor to take into consideration. Finally, it also comes down to the people at Bennett Graphics. They took the time to get into the technical setup. They greatly handled the filming and audio, but you can't expect everybody to do it as well.
The quality and the audio are on level with what we normally deliver, so we CAN deliver high quality despite the travel bans, the lockdowns, and the COVID-19 situation.