A FEW TAKES ON THE BUDDING PRODUCTION HOUSE REALM

A FEW TAKES ON THE BUDDING PRODUCTION HOUSE REALM

March 7, 2019

By Abdullah Al Nahian

In the technology and information driven market that we have in our lives today, the opportunities for marketers have increased several folds and so have the threats. As of this moment, it is not just enough for marketers to inform people about their products, but they must do so in a creative and engaging way with a great storytelling. While a big part of the creative responsibility is bestowed upon the agencies, the production houses play a big role in making the work happen.

In this piece, we will briefly learn about what production houses do, how they can help brands and few tips for them to grow better. For large houses, this may help as a reminder – for comparatively young houses, this may help as a guideline.

GROWTH IN RECENT TIMES

Nowadays, it is simply not enough for marketers to be informative in their advertising and content. They must also present everything in such a way that the customer remembers them thoroughly. The fight for the customer’s mind share is what pushes organizations to take the bar of advertising and producing content in higher manner. In this case, the quality of the content and how it is delivered matters a lot. Nowadays, everyone can make a video but not everyone can make a good video. Hence, there is a rising demand for production houses in the country. Production companies usually have talented directors and other crew members to ensure that they can produce content of the highest quality and breathe life into the theoretical ideas of their clients. A lot of works, takes and retakes go behind the making of the successful campaigns that we see on the television.

HELPING ORGANIZATIONS BUILD BRAND LOYALTY

In the past, organizations that used to seek help from the production companies, used to make a yearly 60 to 90 seconds advertisement campaign based on a storyline. But recently, organizations have started to change their strategy. According to an interview given by Rosalind Healy, Portfolio Marketing Director, Europe at Guinness to The Beak Street Bugle, organizations are now shifting from a yearly campaign to launching several advertisement campaigns throughout the year. Organizations are moving away from the marketing techniques that used to target brand loyalty and are approaching towards marketing techniques that are more concentrated on gaining the mind-share of the customer. They have started to realize that in the current scenario where the customers have a lot of brands to choose from, it is more important for them to always be in the mind of the customers, compared to gaining brand loyalty. Hence, organizations are instructing production companies to focus on making several campaigns instead of focusing on one campaign only.

THE TECHNOLOGICAL EVOLUTION TO CONSIDER

The filmmaking and cinematography-based production industry has undergone a lot of changes in the recent past. The media content that people consume now is significantly different than the ones they used to consume even 10 years ago. The reason for this rapid change in this industry can be attributed to the rapid change in technology. As technology gets better and better every day, so do the format, quality and the focus of the content.

Format

The way we view content has changed so much recently. Earlier, our main source of viewing content was the television. However, nowadays, because of the reduction in size of technological products, most people are seen consuming content on either their laptop screens or their cellphones. Phones have gone on from being just a device for maintaining communication to a device which provides holistic media consumption. Keeping this in mind, the content makers must also make changes to the style of their filming. For a long time, the 16:9 aspect ratio of film was considered to be the standard format. Production houses would focus on generating content only for the television screen keeping in mind the individual level consumption. However, as people now have more options, production houses have more displays to cater to. As a result, there is a rising trend that can be seen in the production community, where filmmakers are switching from the traditional 16:9 aspect ratio to 18:9 or 19:9 aspect ratios because phone screens are following those aspect ratios. In terms of format, new technology like VR and AR are also entering the market. This means that production houses are having to generate content for those markets as well.

Camera

Cameras have come a long way as well in the last few years. The camera sensors have gotten bigger, letting filmmakers be able to shoot in extreme lighting situation, while at the same time, the bodies of the cameras have become much more compact. There is also a growing preference towards using Full Frame cameras even for basic filmmaking. Resolution and dynamic range also play key roles in all of these as content makers are now shooting at 8K resolution with very expensive cameras like the RED Monstro 8K. Other than that, to generate a realistic view, production houses are also opting for 360-degree cameras. These cameras provide consumers with a real life view of what is happening on the screen. Another thing that has recently started to rise is the use of interactive video. In Netflix’s television show called the “Black Mirror”, a recent episode called “Bandersnatch” has been seen providing users with several storylines of the same character which they can choose from as the video progresses.

Lights and Audio

In the lighting department, a noticeable change can be seen in the use of ambient lighting. Earlier, in any sort of production, the lamps in the background would be hidden so that they would not emit any unnecessary light into the scene. However, recently, to give a more natural look, production companies are seen using ambient lighting to describe the scene or the mood of the person on film. Other than this, the use of Quasers, bright battery powered LED lights can now be seen a lot, especially in certain types of productions like music videos. These lights are used in the music video to give a flashy and upbeat vibe to the audience. Audio has seen massive improvements over the years as now sounds are recorded in a way so that some sort of ambient sound can always be there, to set the mood of the film. Audio engineering is a very important thing when it comes to production and filmmakers are starting to realize that now.

Post Production Software

Even though care is always maintained during production, post production is still a must. In terms of post-production abilities, the production companies have come a long way; simply because of the superb rise in technology. New software and hardware launched every now and then work to provide a seamless post production experience. For windows users, the most preferred video editing tool is the Adobe Premiere Pro while for Mac users, it’s the FinalCut Pro. Depending on what operating system a person uses, the assortment of editing tools changes. However, because of the advent of such editing tools, consumers can now get a more realistic view of content than ever before.

NOTES FOR CLIENTS

Choosing the right production company as a client can be difficult, especially if the clients do not know the type. As a result, it is recommended that before assigning a production company to do a job, clients should look at the portfolio of works of the production houses. Every production company has a unique production style of its own. As a result, before assigning work to a certain production company, it should be inspected first whether the style of the production company aligns with the style of the client organization. Again, a lot of decisions in choosing a production company depend on the budget and quality the clients are aiming for.

SOME TIPS TO ATTAIN SUSTAINABILITY IN THE SECTOR

For production companies that solely focus on delivering content for their clients, the most important thing is to ensure a solid existence. What this essentially means is that they should set up the business in such a way that it seems legitimate and appealing to their clients because business transactions depend a lot on how a company portrays itself. Building up a relevant portfolio assists in building up a positive image for the company. Managing finances is an integral part of any business. This means that production companies should check their income and expenses properly, save up for adverse situations and more importantly, take some sort of down payment for any project. In this way, even if a project falls through in the middle for unfortunate reasons, the production company can at least sustain itself without incurring heavy losses. Companies should also focus on setting up a cooperative team. Internal conflicts can cause heavy damage to any production team. At the end of the day, a production company must essentially understand and accept that sometimes, to cope with different styles, one must outsource and that is completely fine.

Organizations these days in our country, much like that of the west, have started to understand the need for interactive and engaging content. As a result, new production companies are opening up to accomplish the creative demand of the organizations. Opening up production houses, be it specific or in-house, might be easy; but maintaining them can prove to be a challenge without the correct approach. Hence, to sustain in this sector, it is of utmost importance that the companies take different challenges into account and act accordingly.

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