How we made the new Bannerflow video
Bannerflow needed a video. We needed a Bannerflow video that provided potential customers with a clear value proposition. Explained who we are, what we did, and how we’re changing display ad production for the better.
Previously, Bannerflow had commissioned videos that didn’t quite match our ambition, or represent the character of the company. Our sales team needed a new video that presented the Bannerflow platform in all its glory, while others wanted a video that reflected Bannerflow’s values as a company.
I’ve produced my fair share of video in the past but this was different. The Bannerflow video was to set the tone for a whole company. Get this wrong and it’s everyone who feels the heat. Even before the project began, research was on the agenda. What did we want the video to represent? What did we want it to show? And what were our competitors doing? No stone was left unturned.
From this research we decided the key fundamentals of the video. Our design team was an excellent help. The look and feel of the company had just been tweaked, it was vital this carried through into the project. From these fundamentals we would build our description of what we wanted and a rough script. These were then sent to production companies who we met and discussed the project with. Ultimately, we went with a Stockholm based film and animation studio called Brikk.
They got Bannerflow immediately, showed us what they could do and explained how they were going to make an awesome video. Not only that but they took us out of our comfort zone and presented us with something different. We liked this a lot.
The pre-production process began with discussions over script, locations, all sorts of small but critical components – they were all up for debate.
The script itself took time to shape as there was so much we wanted to cram in! But the idea was clear from the onset. We would follow the creation of a display ad campaign from idea to published campaign – complete with real-time optimisation – in a single day. This was killer. Updating published banners isn’t a reality for some businesses, while others are still spending weeks creating campaigns – which is crazy.
One of the most critical parts of the video was who was going to be our “designer”, the main character of the video. Fortunately for us, in Moira, the actress chosen, Brikk cast perfectly.
The banner ad, central to the video, and created by our “designer”, was carefully crafted too . Company founder Daniel Jacobsson was tasked with creating a remarkable but “typical” ad that presented Bannerflow’s capabilities. Making the background a looping video was an early decision. Below is an early composite image created to get a feel of the banner design – initially we went with shoes before settling on speakers.
We also went through a few visual iterations before settling on the final visuals of the video. Moving between abstract and handcrafted, we ultimately went with a look and feel that was clean and crisp – digital but warm. Here’s what the animatic of the storyboard with a close to finalised script looked like: Bannerflow animatic with comments.
The shoot itself was set over two days, one outdoors and one indoors.
We were incredibly lucky with the weather. Stockholm is beautiful in sunlight but even in summer it is notorious for its changeability. On moment it can be brilliant and the next its snowing! But we were lucky. For the entire outdoor shoot the city was a dream. Every angle was near perfect. As a proud Stockholm startup we couldn’t have presented our home city any better. Not only that but the sheer range of amazing locations meant the variations of footage captured was almost too good.
The indoor shoot was perhaps the more complicated of the two shoots. Planning and casting needed to be perfect, with members of the Bannerflow team performing the role of extras in the office based scenes. The filming took place at Brikk’s office which allowed us full control over filming the environment (and offered fantastic views over Lake Mälaren in Stockholm).
The post production process went smoothly too. It was a great opportunity to fine tune and edit, with Brikk director, Josef, sifting through hours of footage to create an edit that remained more or less the same throughout. The vast majority of post production was spent on perfecting the videos graphics. Attention to detail was key, and between Bannerflow and Brikk the final video emerged.
It was a great opportunity to make use of some in-house talent. With company product specialist Sanna Nordgren stepping up to the plate to help create some of the product shots in the video.
Surprisingly, the trickiest bits of the production was trying to pin down a soundtrack, and finalising the start and end shots. Different tracks dramatically altered the feel of the video! Jazz being probably the worst choice! Eventually, a track was settled on that worked perfectly.
The Bannerflow video:
And here it is! All variations done just before the company’s Midsummer party. What better place to launch?
We’re now redesigning the Bannerflow homepage to host the video. Unfortunately, just dropping the video into the website would destroy our SEO! We’re going to host the video remotely so as to not impact the load time of the site – a critical element not to overlook.
Finally, massive thanks to everyone in the Bannerflow team who contributed, and the excellent team at Brikk who produced and made the film for us. Particulary, Josef, Sofia and Bjorn. A talented bunch who we’ll no doubt hear more from in the coming years!