How to Make a Corporate Video That Doesn’t Suck

There’s a lot of talk about corporate videos being outdated and no longer relevant. They can definitely be cheesy, stiff and feel like they’ve been birthed straight out of the 80’s. But, companies like Hubspot, Google, and Starbucks don’t seem to think so.

At Veed.me, we believe that a corporate video is still a fantastic tool to have in your video content arsenal, if done right.

Wait, What Exactly is a Corporate Video?

First of all, it’s helpful to define what we mean when we say “corporate video.” For our purposes, a corporate video is a public-facing video which focuses on the company, its culture and its people as a whole, rather than specific products or services. You may have also heard this type of video being called a “corporate culture video” or a “recruiting video.” For all intents and purposes, these terms are interchangeable.

The goal of a corporate video is to show the human side of your company or brand and connect on a more emotional level with your viewers.  It’s all about letting the personality of your company culture and employees shine.

There are many benefits and uses for a corporate video:

  • An HR tool to attract the best and brightest talent to work for your company
  • Build brand credibility and trust by highlighting your company’s history and people
  • Provide a faster way for website visitors to digest information about your company
  • Google loves video and you’ll show up higher in search engine results
  • Show the human side of your company and connect on an emotional level with viewers
  • A new piece of video content to leverage across your website, job postings, and social media accounts
  • A PR tool to get journalists interested in creating pieces about your company

What Not to Do

Since the title of this post is “How to Make a Corporate Video That Doesn’t Suck”, let’s look at a few things that you definitely want to avoid:

  • Unnatural scripted storyline
  • Unnecessary visual effects
  • Overly enthusiastic (fake) speakers
  • Awkward transitions
  • Corporate BS words. You know the ones: revolutionary, world-class, breakthrough, thought leader, state of the art, synergy, cutting edge, groundbreaking, one of a kind, etc.

corporate BS words

Twitter’s parody corporate video takes a unique approach: to make the best worst video.

This gem of a video shows all the things you don’t want to do. Check it out if you want a good laugh:

Pre-Production: Planning is Key!

When planning the flow of your corporate video, it’s important to decide on the key messages and main points that you want to highlight about your company and culture. This will form the basis of your storyboard and keep everyone on track and focused.

The beauty of corporate videos is that there isn’t a defined format you have to follow.

However, there are several “ingredients” common to the most appealing corporate videos that you can use in various combinations:

  • Founder/ CEO / Upper Management interviews: Interviews or messages from the C-level employees in the company, talking about the company’s history, values, successes, etc.
  • “Average Joe” employee interviews: Interviews with employees who are definitively NOT part of executive leadership and who can speak to the company work culture, benefits, atmosphere, etc. at the company. This is important for building credibility to attract job applicants and to show the company is an attractive place to grow a career.
  • Office Tours: Footage which shows the company’s physical space and how employees work, interact and move through it. You should also get footage that highlights unique perks and features at the company.
  • Company Culture Events: It’s also very effective to supplement office tour footage with  with footage from unique events inside the company: team-building days, pranks, birthday parties, blooper footage, holiday parties, etc.

Since corporate videos feature real people from within your company and not actors, this type of content is more affordable to produce. Not everyone has on-camera experience, but that’s completely fine – it will make for a more authentic video. You’ll want to share the key points and general questions with the stars of the video, but never a scripted message. For more tips, check out our guide for newbies: 10 Commandments for Going on Camera for The First Time.

Production & Post-Production Best Practices:

  • In terms of corporate video length, as we always say, shorter is better. Aim to make your video clock in at 2 minutes or less. Another great option is to break your content into a series of shorter videos with different themes.
  • When it comes to shooting location(s), more often than not, you don’t need to look much further than your office. You should aim to feature a variety of areas throughout the space, and the more natural light, the better.
  • In post-production, make sure that your videographer adds interest through a variety of b-roll footage that complements what’s being described by the speaker.

corporate video

Making the Most of Your New Corporate Video

Now that your awesome new corporate  video is ready, it’s time to leverage it across your website, social channels, job postings, and through outside PR opportunities.

  • Some standard places to start sharing your corporate culture video include: the About and/or Careers page(s) on your website, LinkedIn company page, on any job postings, and across your social channels.
  • When it comes to sharing on your social channels, you’ll need to think ahead on ways to tailor the content to get the maximum ROI on each differing channel. For example, for use on Instagram, you will need a condensed (maximum 60 second) clip featuring the highlights or most impactful portion of the full corporate culture video.
  • You might also be surprised how far a corporate  video can take you when pitching to journalists. For example, TechCrunch and Business Insider tour the offices of tech companies for a behind-the-scenes look into the technology and startup scene. Of course, it helps to have perks like a dedicated nap room and beer fridge in your office to get coverage!

Need inspiration? Check out our roundup of some great corporate videos in a variety of styles:

Serious:

Content marketing giant HubSpot produced a relatively traditional but well executed video that credibly celebrates employees and the company culture. It’s also a good example of a corporate video that points out features, benefits, and shows how they are different from the competition.

Funny:

ZenDesk takes a risk with some absurd copywriting, but ultimately, comes across as a fun, eccentric and interesting company to work for.

Viral:

Game company Kixeye followed a really untraditional route, going for an extreme “viral” type approach to attract a lot of media attention. Somehow it works though and is probably successful at drawing the type of people they want working there.

Touching:

E-commerce darling Shopify has a series of culture videos. This one is really touching and connects with viewers on an emotional level while also showcasing the company’s excellent customer service capabilities.

Inspiring:

Showing off amusement-park-like work spaces, Google’s corporate video does a great job at targeting interns and presenting a fun and inspiring atmosphere to begin a career. It encourages young professionals to explore, try new things, and succeed in an environment where anything is possible.

Putting it all Together

When done right, with authenticity and a sense of humor, corporate videos can be a huge success. Among a number of benefits, a corporate video will show the human side of your business, help attract the top talent, and assist with SEO. If you avoid the trap of the “what not to do” examples outlined in this post, plan ahead on your messaging, and follow general best practices for post-production, we promise your video won’t turn out looking old fashioned or cheesy. You’ll then be armed with a new piece of video content to leverage across your website, job postings, social media accounts, and PR opportunities.

Convinced that you need a corporate video? Head over to our content shop to check out sample videos by videographers that specialize in culture and event videos. We can’t wait to see what you come up with and learn about the unique culture and the people who make up your company.

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