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One Film Shoot, A Dozen Videos: A Case Study

During the pandemic, producing video remotely was an essential way for organizations to deliver messages effectively without involving an in-person of a film shoot. But let’s face it, original footage brings a lot more than just the “wow” factor. Putting together a film shoot allows you to interview key voices, record important messages, obtain captivating visuals, and own original footage that can be repurposed for future use. But many film shoots are not organized as strategically as they could be. In this post, we look at how a single film shoot was used to create over a dozen pieces of digital content serving different organizational needs.


In a recent project, Opalite Media partnered with Woodwell Climate, a leading climate science research think tank. Here was the initial challenge: Woodwell was embarking on a major $10 million fundraising campaign for a fund to support its boldest, most innovative scientific research. Naturally, they wanted a video that helped communicate the impact of their research to donors. Instead of aiming for a wide audience, this video was geared to a small, select group of funders.


The video we created relied on unscripted on-camera interviews administered by a lead producer. In the planning process, we determined that the most effective messaging would result from hearing the scientists talk about their work in their own words. As a result, we scheduled a film shoot anchored on five ~45 minute interviews with key voices.



But something else came up in the planning process -- we asked: if we were going to interview five key people for the fundraising video, how could we leverage the opportunity to create additional content? Since the subjects were all taking the time to be interviewed on camera, it wouldn’t take much additional effort to ask them about the research center’s history, what makes it unique, or recent projects that might not be directly related to the fundraising effort. While the primary focus of the film shoot was to create a fundraising video, we could also develop content to support other needs without a great deal of additional resources.


For example, these 4 short videos all highlighted speakers discussing what is unique about the research center:


These videos served as a call to action:


This video served as a stand-alone introduction to the organization and its history:


In total, Opalite Media created over a dozen videos as part of this project, which reached several different target audiences. The truth is, any film shoot should result in multiple creative assets, even if the primary focus is on producing a single video. Still shots, social media clips, and behind the scenes footage can all serve as creative assets for a campaign. Creating multiple versions of a single video also allows you to potentially segment audiences and reach them through different methods.


Before embarking on a film shoot, it’s essential to define the deliverables ahead of time. How many videos are being created? What is the approximate length? Who are the target audiences? Producing a single 30 second video might take more time and planning than an hour long video -- it entirely depends on the production approach, visual scenes, and budget. At Opalite Media, we encourage our clients to think of any film shoot as an opportunity for a campaign. The output of a campaign isn’t just a video -- it’s a message, an idea, and a visceral feeling that can be communicated in a variety of ways. Having multiple creative assets to support a campaign can go a long way to expanding its reach and impact.