5 Tips for How to Create Powerful Media

Written by, David Rathod, Creative Director, InVision Communications

(Download PDF Version: 5 Tips for How to Create Powerful Media)

InVision believes in creating captivating, transformative experiences that connect with audiences on a deeply emotional level. There’s no better way to engage an audience and convert them into brand enthusiasts than with imaginative storytelling told through beautifully executed media. For us, media constitutes a variety of elements, including video, motion graphics, theatrical effects (i.e. lighting and sound), and interactive components and technology (i.e., augmented reality and virtual reality).

Here Are 5 Tips for How to Create More Powerful Media Experiences for Your Brand:

1. Define the Takeaway.
Before starting any media project, establish what you’re trying to achieve. When the experience is over, what do you want people to do? What do you want them to feel? Craft your messaging so the audience reacts in a certain way and develop the style of your piece to generate the feeling you want to establish. Think about style in the context of movie genres—is this a comedy, drama, thriller or historical story? Knowing what you want the audience to do and feel will inform how to tell your story.

2. Treat Media Like a Journey, Not a Destination.
Effective storytelling takes audiences to a place they might not have otherwise gone. Though there is a beginning, middle and an end, the point of the story is the power of the experience itself. Use honesty and imagination as a way of getting the audience to let down their guard and get caught up in the moment. Put yourself in the mindset of the attendee, think about how you will excite and inspire them; and guide them along a path of discovery that ultimately connects them to your brand. If you’ve taken them on a compelling journey, you will have earned their trust along the way. And with brands, trust is critical to success.

3. Craft a Unique Message.
Instead of creating a safe, generic message, take a stand! To win over the audience, distinguish your brand by developing a smart, creative, unexpected story—something that supports your brand story, yet separates you from competitors. Tell your brand story with heart and conviction, not marketing lingo. If you feel a personal connection with the story you’re telling, others will too. Be bold with your media design to maximize impact—when done well, it always pays off. You can be bombastic and loud, minimal and elegant, or funny and irreverent. A succinct, bold idea that reinforces your brand, yet resonates with people catapults your brand to be top-of-mind.

4. Flatter Your Audience—With Intelligence.
Today’s audience is more sophisticated than ever. As this link from eMarketer shows, people absorb media all day, every day—online, offline and on their phones—which means they’ve seen it all. Audiences want to be moved and impressed, so give them original, exciting work. Whether you leverage elegance, humor or emotion, be smart about it. Don’t dumb it down. Create experiences for intelligent, observant audiences and they’ll respect your brand for it.

5. Put the Venue to Work.
Where and how will the audience be experiencing the media? It’s important to understand the venue space itself. If it is expansive and spacious, use the whole room. Lighting effects, projection mapping and interactive elements, such as PixMob, can help fill out a space, making it feel more intimate. It’s also important to pay attention to running time and tempo. For example, if you’re creating an opening experience, the audience will give you their full attention; use it wisely and don’t overstay your welcome. Always leave the audience wanting more.

Engage and Inspire Your Audience with InVision
Immersive, engaging media experiences can transform the way you connect with your audience. People love being taken on a journey, and a well-crafted story told through film/video, interactive elements, live performances or a combination thereof can boost the emotional engagement they have with your brand, your products and your people.

If you’re interested in creating more powerful media experiences, let’s talk. At InVision, we’re always excited to tell brand stories in new, thought-provoking ways. Contact us at info@iv.com. 


You Have Five Seconds to Strike a Pose

We’ve all been inside a photo booth. Three, maybe four, of us enthusiastically squeeze into this tiny 75”h x 29”w x 60d” booth with a useless bench (because let’s face it, even one person sitting on it gets crowded). We excitedly choose between four different backgrounds – hearts, Hollywood curtains, stars, etc. – or maybe there is no choice. Suddenly, you have five seconds to pose (most of the time without a countdown) so some of us hurriedly try to come up with the cleverest pose while the others are trying to maintain within the photo frame in the hopes of not being cut off. We go through this circus about three more times and then, sweaty but still excited, we stumble out of the photo booth and wait five minutes for our one photo strip.

Sounds exhausting, right?

Fortunately, there are other ways to have fun taking photos with friends and colleagues. Instead of piling a limited number of people into a booth, what if you created an environment that allows photo-posing fanatics to feel like they’re actually in the scene? To enhance the experience further, hand attendees props and easy-to-throw-on costumes. These backdrop environments are a great way to promote your product or an event; draw attendees towards your booth at a tradeshow; or create a memorable experience at your conference.

To help inspire you, BizBash recently compiled 19 of the most clever photo booth backdrops. So tell us, if the sky was the limit, what kind of photo booth backdrop would you create?

You Had Me At Hello

I moved two months ago. Since then, I have been on a diligent hunt for businesses to support in my new community. After scouring numerous reviews, I finally found a new nail salon to try – a small business owned by a young woman from my neighborhood. I analyzed all the amenities that one researches in a new business. Fair prices? Clean facilities? Professional staff? Convenient location?

Based on numerous testimonials, the salon seemed to measure up. Excited for a new experience, I made an appointment on their website later that week.

Upon arrival, the salon really reflected the physical descriptions I found online – beautifully decorated, and lacking that notable chemical smell that many salons can have.

I smiled at a woman who appeared to be the owner and told her which manicurist I had booked with and for what time. Her eyes darted in my direction as she continued to file away at a client’s nails. “You couldn’t have made an appointment for that time. We close in 20 minutes.”

Befuddled by her reaction, and slightly worried that I had made a mistake, I checked my phone for the confirmation and reminder e-mails that I was sure that I received. I handed my phone to her for verification and she doubtfully scrolled through each message to double-check.

I began to get the sense that my business was unwanted as I watched several other ladies waiting for, what I can only assume were, correctly booked appointments. A simple apology for the inconvenience would have sufficed. Perhaps even acknowledgment of the website’s obvious faulty system. But it never happened.

Eventually I was accommodated, without apology or remorse. The service was decent, but the overall experience was tainted by my sour reception. There I was, hopeful to support – and recommend – a local business, while the owner could barely muster a friendly welcome.

First impressions are an impactful part of customer service; they exemplify so much about the possibility of a lasting relationship, and ultimately determine a client’s decision to utilize your business.

I’m sure that the salon owner forgot about my lost reservation a moment after our exchange, but I will certainly remember the thoughtlessness with which she regarded my potential business for a while.

Can you remember your most recent first impression? Would it warrant the possibility of a longstanding relationship?

Amina Bobb, Operations, InVision Communications

The Power of the Attendee Experience

A few weeks ago I was granted my very first opportunity to work on one of InVision’s largest shows. With 3,000 executive-level attendees and a client relationship ten years in the making, even my novice sensibility guessed that expectations were high all around.

I was assigned a supporting role to a Senior Producer who was pretty familiar with the audience of our 200-person breakout room, having worked with this client before. He eased all my fears about meeting expectations early on, as he speculated that our opening experience was sure to the best in the show’s breakout history.

My producer and I spent our first day together discussing the process by which each component of our show was decided, as the overall theme was that of unifying attendees across the globe.

As our particular audience was that of a more conservative group, the pre-production creative team held the task of actively engaging attendees in the opener’s first moments.

On show day, all of my anticipation came to a head. A pitch-black room disarmed the audience to signal the start of the performance. Moments later, the spotlight illuminated a charming young violinist who began to play a feverishly upbeat melody. He was soon joined by a medley of performers who implemented varied forms of percussion to create one collective sound.

When it came time in the performance for the emcee to request audience participation, I held my breath. But there was no need. Every single suited figure in the room stood up to join in the clapping rhythm. The opener ended with a standing ovation from the entertained attendees and an unmistakable look of satisfaction on my lead producer’s face.

The energy radiating through the room was clearly the result of my producer’s abilities to read his audience and produce a tailor-made performance that would grab and hold their attention.

How well do you know your audience and attendees? If the answer is “not enough,” then how can you work to understand them better?

Amina Bobb, Operations, InVision Communications

How IVC-ee It: Technology – How Wow Is It?

The goal in corporate communications is to successfully communicate the company’s objectives to their intended audience. As their partner, we know that the overall experience will make or break an event so we consistently push the envelope to create amazing experiences that move audiences to action. A crucial component in this process is finding some of the most innovative technologies to help achieve our goals. But how do we know what’s right?

Technology has always been the forefront of the “wow” factor for any event. But a “wow” technology can only get you so far as a marketer. It needs to have a clear purpose. While it’s exciting to have that holographic image appear on stage, theater tricks doesn’t always produce the results you are looking for.

Take for example social media. Don’t integrate Twitter into your event just to say you had Twitter for your event. Create a digital strategy with a clear vision that aligns to your overall goals. Ask yourself why is Twitter important for X campaign and how will it help you accomplish your goals. You might even find yourself realizing as you develop your plan that Twitter isn’t even the best social media channel for your particular campaign.

Another example might be audience response systems. Plan ahead and ensure that you have a clear vision for how you want to use an audience response device. Are you using it to gather audience feedback in real-time? Is it for attendees to ask questions to the speaker to help guide a keynote? Always make sure that it’s easy to use, serves a purpose and produces results.

My tip for the day: Never use the reason to integrate a technology into your event because it’s cool and trendy. If that’s your only answer, don’t use it.

What tools have worked at your events and what hasn’t? Why?

Nicole Martin, WC Receptionist, InVision Communications


The Digital Dish w/ Nicole Bojic

Digital Strategy in a B2B World

It’s not the digital tools that will enhance your event; it’s a sound digital strategy.

It’s not surprising that organizations are increasingly more apt to integrate digital and social media tools into their marketing mix. The case is no different when it comes to corporate communications programs. Does that mean we should launch a mobile events app, establish a twitter hashtag, or create an augmented reality scavenger hunt, just to check digital off to-do lists?

Digital tools are only effective if the audience uses them, and more importantly, in the manner we’ve intended. As event marketers, we know that adding a digital component to the live experience will help increase the overall effectiveness of the event audience and our budgets…but how?

There are a few ways digital can be used to elevate the event experience and continuing the conversation with your audience, including pre-conference promotion, social media and gaming on-site, and reinforcement and assessment post-conference. But the value sought in digital is difficult to measure if we don’t take a proactive approach to integrated event design. We have to start by asking the right questions, and believe it or not – they have little to do with digital tools:

    • What are the primary goals and objectives of the program/event?
    • Who are the various audiences we are trying to reach?
      • What are the demographics of each target audience?
      • What is the relationship with the organization? How are they structured within the organization?
      • What is their area of focus?
      • What are the challenges/opportunities each target audience is currently facing?
    • What information is being communicated to each audience on a regular basis?
    • What pop-up communications opportunities occur throughout the year with each target audience?
    • How are you currently delivering communications to each audience?
      • Which platforms already exist, and how are they being utilized?
      • Which platforms are currently in development?
    • Is there a need for each target to collaborate? If so, what information is currently being shared and how?
    • Is there a communications plan in place to generate awareness/increase understanding as to the use of each platform and the information housed there?
    • How are you currently measuring the effectiveness of your communications to each target audience?

    How are you evaluating whether your digital strategy and tools are being used are whether they are the fit for your audience? Do you have a sound digital strategy?

    Nicole Bojic, Senior Digital Strategist, InVision Communications

How IVC-ee It: I Heard it Through the App Vine

If you keep up in the digital world, you’ve probably noticed that this new mobile app called Vine has generated quite the buzz in the social media community. As Twitter’s new video-sharing app, you can use the app through Twitter (of course) or email. The homepage includes a newsfeed with popular “editor’s pick” snapshots and the ability to share videos with your friends on Twitter.

What does this mean for your brand?

Videos are one of the most impactful mediums to share content, promote or tease your brand and connect with your audience. Even though Vine only allows six-seconds of video time, it’s enough time to create something powerful enough to connect with your audience. After all, did we really think 140 characters or less was going to do that a few years ago? Another option is to use the six-seconds as a teaser to a much longer video shown on your website. It’s a perfect segue to get them to somewhere.

Some of the best ways to promote your brand is to get your customer to do it for you. Incentivize them to submit a six-second video of YOUR product on Twitter. Allow your Twitter followers to vote for their favorite so that the winner’s video can be shown on your website or Facebook or YouTube channel.

What about live events? If a picture is worth a thousand words, a live video must offer a million words. Who doesn’t love to see a short, yet real experience? Encourage attendees to submit short clips when they’re onsite – it could be a quick video clip of what they just learned; it could be a task of interacting with a product. You can also use the Vine App as a competitive scavenger hunt. Give clues that guide attendees to scattered areas around your venue and encourage them to take a video in each location.

The Vine App is easily accessible to your audience’s and produces high quality, six-second videos.

But don’t just Vine to Vine… you must have a plan. You should still be asking yourself the same types of questions with any social media tool, regardless if it is text or video based.

  • What clips are going to grab the consumers’ attention?
  • What kind of advertising is currently working for the business?
  • For event promotion, how far in advance and how often should the company post the video?
  • Do you know your audience?

Let me know what you think. Have you used the Vine App yet?

Nicole Martin, WC Receptionist, InVision Communications

DISCOVERED! The Disney Experience – They Do it Right

Last week, I took a trip to Disneyland to not only celebrate my one-year wedding anniversary with my husband but to also leave adulthood behind me and let the child within me escape normalcy and interact in a world full of wonder and unexpectedness. We need that sometimes.

I work at a company that delivers experiences all the time. We know experiences are what makes or breaks an event. So suddenly, for the first time, I became acutely aware of the Disney experience. Before I even began my trip, a little bird told me to download Disney’s free app, Mousewait. It’s imperative you do this before you go to the park. You’ll find it most useful on your journey.

From the moment I stepped onto the Disney property, the sounds of whimsical music grabbed my attention. Memories of my childhood poured into me and all sense of adult responsibilities went away. I was a child in a magical world. I could already smell churros before I entered the park, which, let’s face it, are made the best in Disneyland. Every single Disney employee I encountered was friendly, smiling and looked like they really enjoyed their job. It was a lovely break from the cold, distracted stares I get in the Starbucks line every day before work.

The most amazing part of the Disney experience is how every little detail that you see, hear and smell was carefully thought out to greatly impact your day. Random entertainment surprises you in some of the most inconspicuous places. I was passing by the saloon and three actors came out suddenly and did a hilarious performance. At the end, they invited everyone to the restaurant. What a clever way to get people engaged! At California Adventure, all would be quiet on the streets sans the crowd of people moving along to the next attraction when suddenly a car filled with musical performers would drive up and rock the crowd. I would bet that someone strategically planned out each and every performance from the location to the time they arrive.

Have you ever taken a real close look at the attractions as you’re riding through them? Like, REALLY take a look at them? There are so many details in the scenery of these rides that it becomes truly magical. One that stuck out to me was The Little Mermaid ride in California Adventure. When we first get into the two-seater “shell” car, you start to ride backwards down the ramp as if you are dropping into the ocean water. In front of you is another shell car and bubbles are video projected onto the back of that car as if it was filling it up with water. I was amazed by just this little detail. It literally felt like you were riding into the water.

And did you know that there are hidden Mickeys all over the park and on the rides? Kind of cool, huh? Someone actually took the time to inconspicuously hide Mickey heads all over the park and when you find one, you feel like you’ve accomplished something.

Walt Disney thought of everything. It’s not just the colorful characters and enjoyable rides – he really thought about the experience from beginning to end.

Amanda Chartier Retter, Marketing Specialist, InVision

Glow with the Show!

The magical world of Disney has been capturing our hearts for years! And if there’s one thing Disney knows how to do well, it’s putting on an incredible show. At the “World of Color” nighttime spectacular show, Disney integrated Mickey “Glow with the Show” ears for watchers to purchase and wear in California Adventure. Using infrared technology, the ears react to certain spaces and elements within the park. During “World of Color” the ears simultaneously flash and glow in beautiful unified colors to match the lights and beats of the show itself. The result is an amazing sea of color and movement that fully immerses the audience into the magical Disney experience.

Hands Down…This Is Awesome!

G-Speak is a spatial operating environment – a computer interface controlled by hand gestures. Anything onscreen can be manipulated directly. Imagine how deeply this could enhance the user experience at tradeshows and exhibits. From drawing a basic shape, to zooming in on the most intricate details of a product, this can transform attendee experience with a wave of one’s hand.