The how and why of company culture videos
Here’s your 101 on culture videos — the absolute best medium to showcase the unique vibe of a workplace in a simple and fun way.
No matter how you call them — employer branding videos, company culture videos, just culture videos — they seem to be the pot of gold at the end of every employer branding strategy, and for a good reason. The goal of a culture video is simple and clear: to showcase a company’s culture to potential employees and attract fresh talent. If you’re thinking of creating one, here’s what you need to know!
Benefits of having a company culture video
By now, the benefits of making promotional videos are basically marketing gospel.
According to Hubspot, video is the number 1 type of content people want to see from brands, leading ahead of images, blogs, and newsletters.
It’s easy to see why — videos are the next best thing to having something told in person. They also increase engagement on social media channels, reach more audience than other content and improve your overall SEO ranking.
Finally, video as a medium squeezes much more facts and details in less time than text or images. That’s why companies make video case studies, explainer product videos, the usual video about the company history, testimonial videos, and educational video content — anything that’s better seen than read, including culture videos.
A company culture video has all of the advantages listed above, plus one more: it gives potential candidates a clear vision of what it’s like to work with you.
The video can present:
- a view of the office,
- a feel of the atmosphere among colleagues
- an understanding of the common goal you all share
- a quick overview of employee perks & opportunities
And other things you think make you a desirable employer, all in a medium that people actually want to see.
“The how,” aka how to get started
Good jolly, with all those benefits, it’s no wonder that culture videos became essential to any good employer branding strategy. However, before you jump headfirst into making one of your own, here’s a list of things to think about:
Nothing like an ancient Greek proverb to start off on a fancy foot. Here’s the deal: you can’t make a culture video without knowing what your work culture is like. So if you start planning or writing a scenario and get writer’s block, it’s probably because you’re missing key insight about what makes your workplace special.
Observing is one method, but even that can fall short.
That’s why companies work with employer branding agencies: they have a clear outside perspective and hear employees’ insider experience.
They go with you through different stages of the employer branding process (research phase, defining the EVP, visual identity, etc.), so when the time comes to create a company culture video, the agency already has most of the components needed to breeze through the scenario.
Look at this culture video we’ve made for JGL, aligned with the EVP statement, EB slogan, visual guidelines we previously created:
“Make it super special and creative”
Being creative is the go-to advice for any type of marketing content, which makes people think they need crazy, out-of-the-box ideas.
The truth is, you’re not going after an Oscar. Sure, having a vision is awesome and the final product should definitely be enjoyable to watch, but you can achieve that without an overly complicated scenario that blows the budget and makes the whole thing fizzle out.
To prevent that, hire a professional agency or studio that can make a cool video without needing three drones and someone bungee jumping 007-style.
Give it a pinch of salt
If you’re on the other side of the spectrum and don’t want anything remotely spicy creative-wise, please reconsider.
Maybe you’re not a spicy burrito, but you don’t have to be bland oatmeal.
Having just a slideshow of the important years in your company history is NOT a culture video.
Have a cute animation. Go funky with the music. Fly that drone and get that picture-perfect shot of the backyard everyone loves to chill at.
This is not your brand. These are the people that make your company. How you tell your story is important, so think of a cool way of telling it.
Do people want to be filmed? Is the meeting room in scene 3 occupied on the day of filming? Can the Research and development team wear those awful matching sweaters they got last Christmas?
Pre-production means planning absolutely everything regarding location, date, actors, props, writing a disposition, and then sitting down with the videographer to create a shot list for every scene. If you have a production company/agency/studio, then have one key person in charge on your side, and they will take care of the rest.
The technical side of things
Regarding the more technical aspects of the video, there are absolutely no rules you need to follow.
You can have a voiceover or not. You can have everything filmed or use animations, or combine both. You can film in the traditional horizontal 16:9 ratio or — if you think mobile is the way to reach your target audience — give the vertical video a try.
Nothing is off-limits, but make sure you discuss those elements prior to or while writing a scenario. Once it’s done, deciding you want a voiceover mid-filming is… Not impossible, but it will make everyone hate you.
One thing we do recommend using is motion graphics. They’re just cool and make everything better. For example, if you have a voiceover, you can use motion graphics to highlight certain words and phrases on-screen, giving your video more clarity and a little bit of extra “oomph”.
Also, make sure to use authentic music and give the video a good rhythm. Maybe think about instruments (do you want piano, guitar-heavy, or something bassy with a groove?). This will help you find the right fit.
You can find all that important components in our video “Startup in 24h,” where we tried to present the 24 hours of teamwork from the first scratch to the final result — sveoautizmu.com website.
The “why” you need a culture video
“Are you telling me I had to read all of this to find the answer to the title?”
Yes. Classic marketing.
Anyways, if you’re still pondering the importance of showcasing work culture to potential employees, here is our culture video. We wanted to add some of our core values, such as achievement & expertise, togetherness & teamwork, passion, positivity & playfulness, personal & professional development. Did we manage to present all that? Check out the video below and let us know what you think!
Presenting your work culture does matter because it lets people know whether they can be themselves at work and still feel like they belong.
It’s a wrap
This leads us to the last thing you should have in mind: always be honest.
Set people’s expectations straight, whatever your culture may be — a group of nerds who excessively talk about bitcoin; ambitious startup youths sharing LinkedIn quotes, or super serious but supportive finance managers with tons of experience.
Company management often feels the need to emulate a certain vibe (think Google or startups with ping pong tables), but fake it till you make it, in this case, is a bad idea.
The only thing you need to be is true to yourself so that people joining your company say it’s exactly how they imagined it — only better.
Oh yeah, and we do employer branding and make culture videos, so give us a call if you need one.