Genius House Debriefing

Does your inner child giggle when you hear news of a White House debriefing? I can’t be the only with momentary visions of a politician getting pantsed, right?

In the case of this blog post, debriefing is meant as a report after the completion of activities. It’s been a busy month or so for Genius House, with a viral video success story, soaking in the SXSW Interactive experience, and an ambitious broadcast commercial shoot. Since we love to tell stories, here’s the lowdown on what we have been up to.

Dallas Symphony Viral Video + Student Presentation

Shooting something out of the ordinary, a bit daring and amusing is just plain fun. Seeing the views escalate and news coverage expand after it has been published is even better. Having a long term client that trusts your judgement and is overjoyed with the results is the absolute best.

The nature of the orchestra and many highly regarded musicians is generally reserved. Fortunately, the distinguished Dallas Symphony decided to break the mold and have some fun by gathering a small group to perform carpool karaoke while cruising the Arts District in a rented SUV. Our crew had limited time to film, so there was a lot of pre-production thought into gearing up the car before taking off, with Adam hidden in the back monitoring audio, and me driving while Darren filming as we followed the Escalade. It turns out, these performers can nail Vivaldi as well as Journey, even when squished into a small space with instruments and little elbow room. And it turns out, people loved seeing it happen:

The results (as of today) provided by DSO:

  • Facebook: Total views: 65,245 | Total people reached: 146,905 | Engagement: 3,928 (includes comments, likes, reactions, shares)
  • YouTube Views: 6,529
  • Twitter: Likes: 47 | Retweets: 39 | Impressions (reach): 4,696
  • Media Coverage: 12 Outlets

The other cool part of this story was that DSO published the carpool karaoke video on a morning that we were speaking to a college class about video production in the digital age. Our presentation originally covered the basics of the video production process, thoughts on trends for 2017, etc, but we realized that this was an ideal opportunity to share a “live” case study as we watched the numbers grow on the Dallas Symphony Facebook page. Not surprisingly, this was super engaging for today’s generation of students and resulted in a great discussion.

SXSW  

Per usual, the South by Southwest Conference was a blend of inspirational sessions, networking, parties, thought provoking panels, parties, and compelling keynotes. A few valuable takeaways:

  • Facebook video is the most underpriced marketing tactic today, according to Gary Vaynerchuk. He knows his shit, so I would just go ahead and mark that under fact. He explained that the ability to target location, wealth, etc is an incredible resource, and that “creative is the variable to success.” In addition to his usual brutal honesty, passionate tips and f-bombs, Gary advised that brands should act like a media company instead of an advertiser, and simply be entertaining.
  • The keynote talk from Cory Richards was a personal journey including emotional battles, physical challenges, and deep lessons that have led him to where he is today. He is an adventurer and renowned photographer who’s images help the public to engage with the natural world and even incite social change. He is also is known for documenting a Mount Everest climb via Snapchat, which received 2 billion media impressions. His openness and authenticity about mental health was moving with one quote that stuck with me personally and professionally:

“People connect when you not only share the beautiful, but also the real.”

  • On the technical side, 360-degree video, virtual reality, augmented reality and live video were widely discussed, which had us pondering the application of these trends for our business. Genius House offers these innovative video production services, but we are always working on how to find simple solutions to future challenges that clients will face. This is where the thought provoking benefits of attending SXSW come in. This discussion continues as we follow the advice of Gary Vee and listen, focus on the long run, and F’ING EXECUTE.

The Ambitious (and Ass Kicking) Shoot

This part of the blog post is outright bragging about the agility and hustle of our small and mighty production team. You’ve been warned. Most recently, we have been working on a tight deadline for three broadcast commercials for an apparel brand and affiliated sports organization. Filming took place over 3 days in West Palm Beach Florida, included models, animals, amateur athlete interviews, outdoor environments, wardrobe changes, hair and makeup, a barn setting, a family owned business during operation, a wary interview subject, sunrise shots, live sports footage, aerials and probably much more. (See some behind the scenes documented on our Instagram.) Filming ended approximately a week ago, and today we received final approval on all three cuts. For those not in the industry, that is lightning fast turnaround. Not once did we think this project was impossible, but it took every ounce of energy on location, grinding out edits and revisions while maintaining our dedication to high quality work. So, cheers to us, and thanks for reading about our accomplishments. If you’ve made it this far, you are probably friends or family, so P.S… love you!

…Now that you are de-briefed, pull your pants up you weirdo.  

 

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