BOB KALSEY about writing

Focus, Focus, Focus

One of the most common problems with corporate videos is that they lack focus; they try to convey too much information or they fail to deliver a clear, succinct, compelling and memorable message.

Effective videos are carefully crafted to meet specific and realistically-limited objectives. They succeed where it really counts: they sell products, they smooth transitions, they win friends and influence people.

To focus on a limited set of objectives does not require lowering your expectations, but defining them: setting down, with great precision, EXACTLY what the program is supposed to accomplish. Long before the cameras roll. And sticking with those goals all through the process.

A sculptor was asked how he created such breathtakingly realistic figures. He replied that, if he were making a bear, he would start with a block of stone and chip away anything that didn't look like a bear.

If we know we want our videotape to be a bear, we need to take a chisel to all the non-bear ideas that might crop up. That's hard, because producing a corporate communication program involves a lot of people -- each of whom will have a lot of ideas. Not all of those ideas will be very bear-like, and not very many of them will look much like the kind of bear you had in mind. Lest you end up creating a bear with horns and fins, stand your ground and let your objectives be your guide.

I like to help my clients establish, understand and articulate their goals, communicate them to all the relevant decision makers, and stay on-target all through production. Sometimes it's easier for an "outsider" like me to do that, because I can ask questions and offer proposals that get my clients and their colleagues thinking and talking--often for the first time--about what it is they're really trying to do.

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Extremely © 2009 Bob Kalsey ALL RIGHTS RESERVED