“This Was a Person”
It could be said that brand film affords certain advantages that other visual mediums - save the tap-and-go, catch-all nature of social media – might generally struggle to match. For both brand and producer, one of those benefits is the ability to quickly pivot on message, as and when the business need arises. Other times, it can mean arriving on location, framing up the camera, and simply letting the story tell itself.
Of course, great creative thought, innovative problem solving, and solid strategy are crucial for success in any video project, but brand film’s dual power of being reactive and proactive is what truly sets it apart. In other words, if a good story such as this crawls out of the ground beneath you, being able to capture it in good time through a lens akin to the eyes of the individuals making the discovery is bound to move audiences. Which is what we find here.
As part of National Grid’s ongoing overhaul of the UK’s entire power infrastructure, the utility company partnered with Wessex Archaeology and Headland Archaeology UK to ensure meticulous surveys of proposed converter sites and cable routes were carried out before work broke ground. From out of such studies comes the landmark find of an Anglo-Saxon burial site, laid out just as it was, the emotional resonance of which is both etched in the faces of those on site and earmarked in the words of an expert who guides us through.
The video has around 300 LinkedIn reactions since publish, on par for National Grid’s ‘Zscore’ course. However, this data point alone takes nothing away from the functioning of the film itself. It’s also refreshing to note how National Grid tastefully step away from the narrative foreground, instead passing the spotlight to those who matter. But perhaps most important for our purpose here is how this video naturally draws questions to the surface that we as an audience would like answered: Why this place? Who were these people? Where can I read more?
Questions mean connection, and connection engagement. It’s exactly the type of response that brands and producers should look to elicit with their brand films.
At a little under 2 minutes in length, this piece bolsters an argument we’ve made time and again: productions delivered to clients needn’t rely on flashy film stylings or place audiences into an overwrought state to achieve impact. Here, in a quiet open space between two glades, we make just as authentic a connection to this story as we might with any other. We’re also left to ponder: If it hadn’t been for National Grid, would we ever have found it?