I love video. Despite what you see on You Tube, not everyone does a favor creating their own video for their business. It can be a stand-out in an OMG-negative way. Having a professionally created video can make you a real star. I’ve written scripts for a payroll company, health systems, colleges, a law firm, industry, tourism, the Salvation Army and more. Here are a few of my favorites.
A PBS-style docu-video for Holy Sepulchre Cemetery
My role: Producer and scriptwriter
People don’t think about cemeteries needing marketing. What most of us don’t realize is – a cemetery is also a business, in that it sells burial spaces to people in a time of great need. It’s a different kind of “real estate.” This docu-video about the largest cemetery of its kind in the state needed to convey several important messages on a subject 99% of us don’t want to think about. My challenge was to create a video that wasn’t depressing or intimidating, but uplifting, informative and interesting. Maybe even… beautiful.
Holy Sepulchre had no real marketing and this video brought their image in to the 21st century. Later on, I was called back to work with LaBarge Media to seamlessly include two major project updates into the original video. The video was split into 4 shorter segments to be viewed on their website.
A 20-minute documentary DVD for the 100th Anniversary of the Canandaigua Area Chamber of Commerce [clip]
My role: Writer
The Canandaigua Chamber of Commerce in Canandaigua, NY needed a knock-‘em-out highlight to their annual dinner, and they needed it fast. They came to LaBarge Media – a local company with an international clientele – and LaBarge came to me for a script.
The work was intense – we had about a month to tape interviews with over a dozen local leaders (like herding cats), do research at the historical society, find top voice talent… One of my tasks as writer was to go through hours of raw video interviews, pulling out the key points & timing segments for the creative director/video editor. We were in the studio many days and late nights weaving and editing the video, choosing stills and music – I had to edit some lines on the spot. I loved every minute.
The video was a hit. It will last for at least another 50 years.
The Anderson Center for Autism 10 video series
My role: Script editor/developer
Sometimes, scriptwriting doesn’t involve a voice-over or scripted on-camera statements. This year-long project was part of The Anderson Center’s update to highlight the new build of their entire campus and their evolution of growth as a leader in caring for, educating, housing and supporting individuals within the autism spectrum and their families.
Creating a master outline of the series helped me, and the producer, to sort and synthesize information. I worked closely with the producer to determine needs, key messages, and create a timeline for on-site interviews; and to determine the language, tone and audiences for each of the videos. I created a shot list for the videographers and producer to use during a 4-day on-site schedule, along with devising interview questions. There was a monumental task of reviewing the raw video clips and organizing the right clips of people under the correct and appropriate topics. Finally, I reviewed the producer’s suggestions and collaborated on choosing the final clips for editing.
When I saw the final cuts, some of the videos brought tears to my eyes. And I never “wrote” a word.
The Animal Pharmacy
My role: Scriptwriter
How do you make a medicine for an animal – or a bird or reptile – that doesn’t involve you trying to stuff a pill down its throat as it struggles and fights (and maybe spits it out or doesn’t get the exact dosage in the process) ? You fill a prescription at a compounding animal pharmacy. These pharmacies are part of a triad with veterinarians and owners.
Anyone who knows me knows I’m an animal lover. Learning about this type of pharmacy and translating the information to the average pet owner was one of my favorite projects.
My role: Scriptwriter
Anytime you walk into a large discount store or factory, you might be walking on a cement floor that’s been repaired, resurfaced or cleaned by a company like Draygon Enterprises. Draygon needed a sales video for potential clients, to show off their solutions specific to concrete floors. They also have equipment they’ve developed – the video needed to show the benefits, as well as their customer service as a small company.
I’ve done a lot of industrial marketing projects. I’ve never found anything that wasn’t interesting – from effluent submersible pumps to shipping boxes that can stand up to forklifts.