Friday, February 28, 2014

Corwhin Tool: Case Study

Corwhin Tool & Manufacturing approached Keywest Video to create an informative and visually appealing video which they could utilize at trade shows. The result is a video that will captivate the attention of passersby, and paint a picture of the company that will entice and draw new customers in.

corwhin tool

When deciding on what direction this #Video should go in the initial meeting with the Corwhin Tool team, they had expressed the need for a video that would be able to tell a story simply through visuals. The sales team at #Corwhin were utilizing a powerpoint presentation with images of their products embedded within it, in order to highlight what their company does for potential clients at #TradeShows. So they were interested in a video that could replace their current offering, in order to attract new clients to their booth.

After that meeting and subsequent site survey, the Keywest producers put together a shot list that captured the essence not only of the company’s products and services, but their additional and very beneficial offerings. Things such as custom engineered solutions, delivery services, rush orders, as well as their diverse staff and specialty equipment were all highlighted.

The completed project is a video which does exactly as it is supposed to. With just enough content to not bore or overwhelm, but just enough to get a good sense of the company and their offerings, it is a wonderful description of their company.

Take a look at Corwhin Tool’s new #PromotionalVideo.

Corwhin Tool & Manufacturing is also in the process of revamping their website. Once complete, they have the intention of re-working this video in order to promote their services with this great spot. Some adjustments would be made in order to tailor the video for an online audience, including cutting down the length to a shorter 1.5 – 2 minutes, as well as adding a voice-over to aid with the flow of the video.

Keywest is very glad to have been able to work on this project and we look forward to continuing our relationship with the Corwhin team.

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Travel Abroad: Montreal to Shanghai

Need a video production crew at your next conference in Florida? Or do you want to get a testimonial from a client in Australia? The Keywest team will travel abroad for our clients, and we can for you too!

travel abroad

When it comes to video production there are a large variety of elements which come together to create a cohesive package. That is why having a video production expert that you can trust is so important in molding your corporate video project. Due to the level of trust and expertise that is required, often clients of Keywest will come to us with a request to travel abroad for the sake of their video needs.

The Keywest Video team has, and is willing to travel abroad to virtually any location, including all across Canada, the US, and beyond. The reason our clients have opted to send us to these locations versus utilizing a production team on the ground, is based on several reasons.

The first reason is continuity. For a project which is being filmed in multiple locations across the globe, and then being inter-cut between one another, this can create room for error if multiple crews have their hands at it. When one team is able to be a part of each shoot, then the ability to match the lighting, eye-line, framing, etc. greatly increases. This is not only due to the same crew being on-set, but also the same equipment being used, such as cameras, lighting, audio recording, and all of the settings and formatting which is required as well.

The second reason why using the same crew is useful is background knowledge. Especially when it comes to having the same producer on each shoot, that individual will have the necessary information about the client, the look and style they are looking to achieve, and what they want out of the interviews and b-roll.

Lastly reliability is a big issue which can be mitigated by sending one crew to travel abroad to multiple locations. If you have worked with the crew before, and specifically if they have traveled for you before, then you know how they work and can rest assured that they will be able to handle anything which arises on-set.

We have come across several clients who have told us their fears of even asking for a quote with travel abroad included as they believe the costs would have been too high for their budget. There is a misconception that the costs of travel is far greater than hiring different crews at each location. In many places the costs of production from a local company may be higher than it would be to simply send a crew from your hometown. The costs also show themselves through the factors already discussed, like not receiving the level of quality or consistency then you had hoped for.

At Keywest we try to balance travel costs with that of other items in the quote, in order to remain competitive and allow our clients to get the service they require for a price which is fair. So don’t be afraid to contact Keywest Video for your video production needs which require travel abroad, as you may discover that it is a lot more affordable then you initially imagined!

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Real Estate Video Production

Real estate videos can be extremely beneficial to those within the industry. Whether you’re looking to showcase a brokerage, an agent, or simply a listing, video is the best way to do so. Here’s a quick overview of how videos can help those within the #RealEstate industry:

Real Estate Video Production Real Estate Video Production

Being a real estate agent means that many consumers are forced to trust you with a large chunk of their hard earned wealth… this means that you have to be trustworthy. Studies have shown that people are more likely to like and trust people they have seen in person than people they have only spoken to on the phone or through email. Video can help you convey your personality and presence as a reliable and trustworthy real estate agent, thereby helping consumers get to know you before you’ve even met them.

We live in an age where everything is about speed, and the real estate industry is no exception to this. It’s faster to convey a message through video than it is through text… therefore people are more like to watch your real estate video than look through your real estate website or brochure. As consumers’ attention spans get smaller, it is crucial to grab (and hold) their attention immediately – video can help you do that.

Search engine optimization (SEO) is crucial to every business’ website, including those in the real estate industry. Video is 57% more likely to make it on the first page of Google than text alone. Video can be an excellent tool to get your real estate agents/listings/brokerages to the first page of Google and make sure that you’re seen before your competitors.

Real Estate Video Production Real Estate Video Production

Take a look at a real estate video that we’ve done in the past. Below is a consumer-targeted website video for a Century21 brokerage, modeled after the company’s existing “Smarter. Bolder. Faster.” campaign.

In essence, if used correctly by those in the real estate industry, video can be an excellent tool to get your message across faster and more convincingly than any other medium. Real estate videos can be an worthy investment for those in the industry and the cost can easily be justified by the benefits and opportunities for new business.

Need a real estate video for your agency, listing, or brokerage? Contact Keywest today!

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Political Viral Videos: Fluff or Fury?

There are millions of online videos beaming through our computer screens on a daily basis.  When it comes to political viral videos they are few and far between the mash-ups, marketing pranks, and cats ridding around on a roomba. However there are a few which have struck a cord with viewers, and garnered enough attention that they warrant investigation.

political viral videos Kony 2012

With an astonishing number of views online – close to the 100 million mark – and said to be “the fastest growing viral video of all time“, Kony 2012 took the social media space by storm in 2012. It blew up everyone’s facebook feed, stirred controversy, and raised a lot of awareness about their cause.

If you haven’t already seen one of the most infamous political viral videos about one of the most hated men in the world, watch it now.

Kony 2012 was an experiment, as the creators called it. An experiment to see if a video, shared across the world through social media, would really be able to make a difference. This video was created by individuals who knew how captivating the moving image can be. They understood the power of a catchy, almost gimmicky video, based around an intriguing man, and an important issue.

Like with anything that grows quickly in popularity, the video did catch a lot of criticism and skeptics.

“Ugandan advocates and actual Ugandans accuse the filmmakers of wild inaccuracies and irresponsible advocacy. Joseph Kony, for instance, is no longer believed to be in Uganda, as the film indicates, and his remaining armies are known to be far smaller than indicated.”

However, for its efforts there were measurable results which have been documented by the Invisible Children foundation.


These statistics, along with the amount of interest from individuals around the globe who took the time to watch a half hour long video, proves the point that political viral videos can have an impact. They can be fuel to a fire that is raging around the world, for people who want to see change.

Egyptian Boy Explains Revolution

In early 2013 a video entitled “Egypt: The Next President” began circulating the net. A young boy stands to the side of a busy street. Protestors, shouting with large signs raised above their heads march behind him. The boy begins to express his feelings about the current state of his home country, Egypt, and the inequalities posed on the poor, as well as the female population.

Through this political viral videos this young boy has been given a voice. He is clearly intelligent, articulate, and understands the subject matter which he speaks about. However, none of that matters if no one is there to listen. A simple video such as this one, shot with a backdrop of furry and commotion from the protesters walking by, resonates with a lot of viewers. This is seen by the fact that this video has over 3.5 million views on YouTube.

What is the impact of this video though? Has this young boy’s heartfelt plea for a more democratic Egypt actually produced anything in the physical world? Maybe, or maybe not. It is a hard measurement to gauge. However, if it has been able to enlighten some Westerners on the plight of those living under the Egyptian regime, and the circumstances and inequalities regular civilians there face, then maybe it can be a called a success. Maybe this little video does have merit and meaning.

Beyond just aiding ignorant foreigners, what if his passionate speech gave Egyptians living in fear the courage to stand up for what they believe is right. Not only on a grand scale such as joining in the violent protests, but something as simple as defending a secular co-worker, or aiding a single woman on the street instead of shaming her. What if this video did create a cause for change? Unfortunately without documented proof we will never know. But at least political viral videos such as this one produce an environment where there is an opportunity to entice change.

Enticing Change

As more and more political viral videos such as these are created, and the population continues to take notice, their importance within the larger revolution will begin to be seen. As has been documented throughout history, it only takes one person, and one event to unite a population, spark a revolution and make a change. With the power of video, and an avenue like the internet, we the people are more equip than ever before.

Monday, February 24, 2014

What if Google were a person?

Google is the go-to for many of our questions in life. Instead of asking somebody, we generally just type it into Google and have our questions answered in an instant.

What if Google weren’t some all-knowing Interweb algorithm, but rather a harried office worker in a soul-sucking office with file cabinets full of information that has to be manually distributed? Would you be able to look into a real person’s eyes as you ask all of the silly and perverted questions you ask Google? And how would he respond to you?

What if Google were a person? What if Google were a person?

Google doesn’t judge us. We can ask the stupidest question possible with the worst wording imaginable, and the search engine will miraculously spew out the answer we were looking for (most of the time). College Humor has dreamed up what it would be like if Google was a real dude and we all had to walk into an office and ask our questions again and again but without anonymity.

Warning: the video below contains curse words… probably best to watch it with headphones on.

We constantly Google things like “what time is it in Brazil?” or “what should I tweet about,” or “red butt rash,” hoping that Google has the answers to all of our queries. We ask from our phones, our tablets, our computers, and we tweak the search until we unearth what we’re searching for.

How would you feel if you had to actually ask these questions to a real person, unable to hide behind the anonymity of your mobile device? Would you still be comfortable asking another person about your high school sweetheart? Would you be willing to admit that you don’t know the difference between an inch and a foot? Do you think you’d be brave enough to inquire about that awkward rash you keep getting?

What if Google were a person? What if Google were a person?

Let Keywest know if you’d be brave enough to ask Google the person!

Friday, February 21, 2014

Instructional Videos: Challenge Accepted

Thinking of creating instructional videos for your product or service? It may not be as straightforward and simple as you image. Here are some key things to consider before you accept the challenge of creating an instructional video.

instructional videosOver the years we at Keywest have helped numerous organizations produce instructional videos to help aid their employees, clients or even vendors to better understand their product or service. Instructional videos can be an integral asset to companies marketing strategies and service offerings. When done correctly they will help boost sales and be something which sets you apart from the competition.

However, time and time again through our experiences working on these type of projects, we have stumbled across individuals who see instructional videos as a simple endeavor.  The biggest mistake people make is thinking they can just film someone going through the motions, and that will be good enough. When it comes to video production, and getting across the message to an audience in a clear and concise way, so much more is involved. Here are our top 5 factors to consider before delving into your instructional videos.

  1. Write a good script - Do not take an instruction manual and use it in place of a script. Those things are written by individuals who don’t necessarily understand the product/service, and certainly don’t know how to explain it to the general public. Therefore it was not written to be engaging and easily understood. Take the time to think of the best way to describe each and every step in the process.

  2. Go through the motions – Too often I have been in the middle of a shoot only to learn that the step we are currently filming could only have been preformed in an earlier step. Although things can sometimes sound good on paper, you need to perform a dry-run to ensure nothing was looked-over. If you take the time to do this in advance of your shoot, you will save a lot of time and budget over-runs on the day.

  3. Hire a professional – If you are planning on using a host in your video opt for a professional actor rather than an employee. It doesn’t matter how great they are with hand tools or arranging flowers, it is unlikely you will find an employee who is great at their job, and also miraculously fabulous at speaking to camera explaining what they are doing at the same time. The exception comes of course if the task at hand is way too complicated or dangerous to get an actor to perform. In this scenario another great option is to utilize the employee performing the task, and then hire a professional voice-over artist to explain the process.

  4. Have someone on standby – If you decide to go with the route of hiring a professional actor, don’t just bank on them reading the script and knowing exactly how to do everything as if it were their day job. Having an employee from your company on hand in case any questions arise is always a good idea. That way the actor can take tips from the person who knows what their doing, and look as though it were second nature.

  5. Schedule enough time – This is one of the biggest mistakes I see individuals making when planning their instructional videos. If something normally takes one hour to perform, schedule 4-5 hours to film it. Film is not real life, and you want your instructional video to not only by easy to understand, but easy to look at as well. Therefore time and effort needs to be taken to ensure your video looks as best as it can. Factors such as lighting, staging, hair and makeup, all need to be factored in. If you can film everything from one angle then you will save a lot of time, but most often you will want to film a wide shot, then a close-up to punch into certain aspects of the process. A detailed shot list will save time on the day, and also can give you a sense of timing in advance so you know what to schedule.

Contact Keywest Video today to learn about how we can aid you with your instructional videos.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Coca-Cola’s Social Media Guard

The Social Media Guard, Coca-Cola’s new faux product, is designed to help us detach from our smartphones and enjoy those around us.

Coca-Cola Social Media Guard - Before Coca-Cola Social Media Guard – Before

The soft drink giant’s latest commercial advertises the fake Social Media Guard, which is pretty much a giant Coca-Cola red dog collar. The Social Media Guard allows you to engage with your surroundings and disengage from your smartphone. Wearing the cone ensures that you are unable to check your beloved Instagram profile every 4 seconds and are now forced to engage with the actual humans that surround you. Each Social Media Guard wearing individual is immediately enlightened and overjoyed once they are forced to interact with others, so much so that they enjoy a refreshing bottle of Coke! :)

Coca-Cola’s commercial about the Social Media Guard takes the media out of social media. The commercial illustrates the fact that we spend such an exorbitant amount of time on our smartphones (mostly for social media) that we neglect to observe and participate what’s going on in our immediate surroundings. It touches upon the notion that although we may be in the company of others, we are still detached from the situation as we are constantly attached to our smartphones. Now, the social media aspect comes into play because most of the time we are actually just browsing social media outlets – updating our Facebook status, tweeting, double-tapping on Instagram, etc. – on our smartphones instead of doing something important or productive.

Coca-Cola Social Media Guard - After Coca-Cola Social Media Guard – After

“Did you know that the world spends 4 million years online every month?” the soda giant asks. “If you’re watching this video on your mobile phone, it’s time to put it down. Look around you, there is probably someone special you can share a real moment with. Enjoy it with an ice-cold Coke :)”

What do you think of Coca-Cola’s Social Media Guard? How do you feel about the attachment to social media and our smartphones?

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Facebook Click Fraud?

Facebook’s page promotion is apparently a waste of money. Derek Muller, the YouTube sensation behind the channel Veritasium, explains exactly why advertising your page is not only useless, but also transforms your page into a target for click fraud.

First of all, there are two ways to increase your likes on Facebook – the legitimate way, and the illegitimate way.

Illegitimate Likes

Let’s begin with the illegitimate way. You can go to certain websites such as and purchase certain packages that claim to get you more likes and “improve your reputation”. However, the likes that you will obtain from these types of websites are actually from “click farms”. These click farms do not actually provide your Facebook page with legitimate likes in the sense that the users liking the page do not necessarily like the content, and will therefore be less likely to engage/interact with the page.

Facebook Fraud - Boost Likes Packages Facebook Fraud – Boost Likes Packages

What is a click farm?

Facebook Fraud - Click Farms Facebook Fraud – Click Farms

A click farm is a form of click fraud, where a large group of low-paid workers is hired to click on paid advertising links for the click fraudster (click farm master or click farmer). The workers click the links, surf the target website for a period of time, and possibly sign up for newsletters prior to clicking another link. For many of these workers, clicking on enough ads per day may increase their revenue substantially and may also be an alternative to other types of work. It is extremely difficult for an automated filter to detect this simulated traffic as fake because the visitor behaviour appears exactly the same as that of an actual legitimate visitor.

Legitimate Likes

Facebook Fraud - Legitimate Promotion Facebook Fraud – Legitimate Promotion

On the other hand, legitimate likes are through Facebook’s page promotion, which guarantees that you’ll connect with more of the people that matter to you. However, this is where the fraud comes into play. Muller had tried to legitimately promote his Veritasium page a few years ago and realized that his likes did in fact grow, yet his page engagement didn’t. He also noticed that many of his newfound likes were also coming from developing countries in which these click farms were situated.

Facebook Fraud - Page Engagement Facebook Fraud – Veritasium’s Page Engagement

Virtual Cat

Suspicious of this behaviour, he recently conducted an experiment. Muller created another Facebook page, Virtual Cat, (similar to VirtualBagel designed to be so purposely awful that no sentient being would click on it, and then paid Facebook to promote that one too.

Facebook Fraud Virtual Cat Facebook Fraud Virtual Cat

People did end up clicking on it almost immediately, but in Muller’s opinion, a close examination indicated that it was unlikely that they were genuine fans of his horrible page. Most of these people were wildly indiscriminate in their “liking” behaviour, clicking the like button on hundreds and hundreds of random pages.

Effects of Click Fraud

In essence, Facebook’s own click fraud is not only hurting their reputation, but also their users. Users like Muller who are able to make their living from YouTube videos end up suffering because although they pay Facebook to legitimately promote their page, they receive fake likes, which in turn deprive him of advertising dollars that he’d otherwise received from YouTube views (because fake likers don’t actually watch his videos. In addition, the fake likes also end up hurting his Facebook EdgeRank, which ultimately how prominently his videos get featured in the News Feed without any paid promotion at all (similar to Google’s PageRank).


It’s easy to see which profiles are spamming, because they often have liked thousands and thousands of Facebook pages, which isn’t something the average Facebook user does. But again, you can’t force those people that unlike your page so that you can increase your engagement across true fans of your page. And unfortunately, it doesn’t seem that Facebook is doing much in the way of reducing the number of a spam profiles that are doing paid likes, despite their assurances that they are.  Bottom line: if you’re planning to do any Facebook advertising, ensure that your targeting only the countries you are primarily doing business in, and avoid those countries that have a lot of paid like activity.

Interesting in finding out more? Read more about Facebook’s click fraud Below:

Search Engine Watch


Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Case Study: The Business Exchange

Keywest recently created a company profile video for The Business Exchange.

 The Business Exchange specializes in lead generation in the franchise and business opportunity industry in print, online, and in person. Founded by Pamela Labelle, the first issue of The Business Exchange came out in Toronto on November 1998. Frustrated with her search due to the lack of selection and brief descriptions of the classifieds, she started looking for a publication that specialized in businesses for sale. In her search she found nothing existed. There was suddenly a great opportunity staring at her in the face, and hence the idea of The Business Exchange was born. Today, The Business Exchange is a successful magazine that connects buyers and sellers of established businesses for sale, franchises for sale, and business opportunities. The Business Exchange is dedicated to being a great resource for entrepreneurs who are passionate about finding their perfect business opportunity.

Take a look at The Business Exchange’s Company Profile video:

The Business Exchange - Candid B-Roll The Business Exchange – Candid B-Roll

Pamela was looking for a video to not only explain, but promote her company, The Business Exchange. The final video discussed exactly what The Business Exchange is, and how it came to be. Pamela also addressed topics such as “Is print dead?” the benefits of free circulation, and making the transition into an online portal. The video touches upon the many uses that The Business Exchange has as well the advent of franchise shows and the company’s success with them.

The Business Exchange - Event B-Roll The Business Exchange – Event B-Roll

In order to create an engaging and informative video, Keywest combined Pamela’s interview footage with related b-roll to further illustrate her points. In addition, we also utilized a mixture of candid b-roll shots as well as event footage from the actual franchise shows. The b-roll not only illustrates the work environment within The Business Exchange, but also the extent to which it has grown, expanding to large-scale trade shows and reaching many clients.



Friday, February 14, 2014

Happy Valentine"s Day from Keywest Video & A5Media

Happy Valentine’s Day from Keywest Video & A5Media!

Keywest Video and it’s close friend A5Media wants to wish you and your loved ones a happy Valentine’s Day!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

PSA: CIDI Luge Controversy

Last week, the Canadian Institute of Diversity and Inclusion (CIDI), a Toronto-based equality rights organization, has launched a controversial LGBT PSA just in time for the Olympics, claiming the games have “always been a little gay.”


The PSA features two men in black spandex suiting up for a doubles luge run, then rocking back and forth against each other in slow-motion before launching down the track. The 30-second PSA – set to Human League’s 1982 hit “Don’t You Want Me” – concludes with the line: “The games have always been a little bit gay. Let’s fight to keep them that way.” Many may think that the song may be a salute to the Olympian’s ongoing desire for acceptance and recognition, but the song has been considered by some to be an anthem for the gay population. In fact, according to the blog Façade Treatment, the song ranks number 7 among the top anthems for the gay population.

“The discrimination in Russia is unacceptable,” says Michael Bach, Founder and CEO of the CIDI, “As an organization, we want to show our support, especially for the athletes competing at the Olympics in Sochi.”

Bach says that the PSA was created as a response to the perceived ongoing discriminatory practices in Russia. He notes that the ad was designed to illustrate support for all athletes competing in Sochi. In fact, the ad has stated that, “Win or lose, whether you are gay or straight, the fight for equality or human rights is an ongoing one that outweighs the pursuit of a gold medal.”

The cheeky PSA has not been universally acclaimed. Many on social media – including on YouTube, where it has been seen more than four million times – said it mocked athletes. Some commenters who identified themselves as gay said the ad made them uncomfortable in the way it sexualized the sport.

The games opened February 7, and with commentators such as openly gay US figure skater Johnny Weir offering their insights into the Olympics and the athletes, it’s certain that the controversy surrounding the anti-propaganda laws about homosexuality will only be further fueled by ads such as the one that aired from the Canadian Institute of Diversity and Inclusion.

Tell Keywest what you thought of the PSA.


The CIDI is also inviting the public to show their support for equality during the games by changing your Facebook profile picture to the silhouette of two lugers forming the equals symbol.

Sources: CIDI, The Globe and Mail, and Guardian Liberty Voice

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Google Hangouts Increases Conversions

Google has long been at the cutting edge of innovation when it comes to their products. From Gmail to Google Glass, they do things in a different, and often better, way. So it came as no surprise that when Google+ landed among the Facebook-dominated social media arena, they found a way to stand out. One of the main advantages is the Google Hangout: a live video conference call for up to 10 participants and limitless observers. For businesses large and small, this provides a whole new method for turning site visitors into customers.

Google Hangout Google Hangout

Promotion. Google Hangouts not only offer live streaming video, it also allows you to record and edit a Hangout at your convenience. You might want to show off a new product to a group of clients, allow them to interact with the demonstration and make the whole thing visible to everyone on the web by posting the final video on your website. Since added participants are optional, you can also use it as your own personal platform to broadcast whatever information about your company you’d like on video. Rather than creating a separate following on YouTube, you can alert your existing followers on Google+ to your new product without having to lead them to another online venue. You’re also set up to conduct product reviews, announcements, and any other promotional needs you might have.

Q&A Sessions. Customers like to be informed. They want up-to-date, reliable information. If a new potential customer is interested in your products, but doesn’t yet trust you, you might consider hosting a live Question and Answer with an Expert. If you bring in an expert in your field, they can field live questions from interested parties. This supplies not just information, but trust and confidence in your brand, providing a more solid base of trust for potential customers to rely on. The New York times hosted a Q&A-type Hangout with a couple of players during basketball season. Dell is also a big believer in the Hangout.

Google Hangouts Google Hangouts

Image Courtesy of

Meetings. Sales aren’t only about the customers, of course. If you have an amazing product but a disorganized company, you’re likely to inhibit your own success. These days, it is so much easier, and more common, for employees to work from various different regions at the same time. This can make communication difficult, and thereby reduce your productivity and sales. Google Hangout makes it easy to have face time with everyone all at once, without worrying about junk mail filters, bad cell connections or expensive conference call hardware.

Customer Service. It’s important for your customers to feel valuable to your company, and nothing communicates their importance more effectively than great customer service. Google Hangouts adds one more level to the ways in which you and your customers communicate. Perhaps your customer service department needs to see the exact issue a customer is having if it’s difficult to describe, or maybe several people are having the same issue and a live discussion helps them feel their input is both received and heard. Another method might be prerecording several Frequently Asked Questions, editing them and posting them on your site so that all your customers can find help in one, single location.

Enhance the User Experience. The Internet has made it easier for brands to expand themselves onto different mediums in a way that is easily accessible to its clientele. Glamour Magazine has hosted several different Hangouts that offer behind-the-scenes looks at their featured content. The print and video mediums are more closely linked than ever before thanks to the interconnectivity of video and text with Google Hangout.

Camille McClane is a writer and tech enthusiast with a passion for social media. She has recently been studying Google and the functionality of all of their products, and also frequently contributes the blog. She hopes you enjoy this article!

Monday, February 10, 2014

Politicians and Smartphones

The smartphone. Virtually everyone with any technical skill and several hundred dollars to spare has one. In this week’s video blog, Keywest discusses the implications that smartphones have had on politics, and especially politicians.

The political world has been filled with great story tellers for as far back as has been recorded. Those men and women who are able to spin bad situations and look like the golden child that saved the day. But in modern times, it has become increasingly difficult for the arrogant and deceitful ones in the bunch to hide their infractions. And one of the major reasons for this is thanks to these wonderful little devices.

It seems that no one is safe anymore, the least bit politicians. With their track record for drama and transgressions, they are the ideal target for civilians equipped with a smartphone and a desire for more YouTube hits.  Anyone is able to take pictures or video on their phone and sell it to the media for a profit. Therefore it’s the individual responsibility of that politician to behave in a way that is becoming and respectable.

As a politician, or any form of celebrity, they’ve essentially given up their right to freedom. Legally speaking, it is perfectly fine for individuals to snap and share photos or videos of public figures for commercial gain. As, the person stepping into that political position has in a way consented to the use of their persona by putting themselves out there to represent a public body, and they themselves are benefiting financially from that position. Another legal factor stems from the fact that video of anyone can be put forth to the media if it is a matter of public interest.

For example, Mayor Rob Ford’s alleged crack video, and all the videos that have been distributed online of him in a “drunken stupor” that have been released, could be put under this category. As a representative for the city of Toronto, it can be argued that it is in the public’s best interest to know how he behaves when in public. It’s another story to try and record footage of his family, or him in a private location such as his home, but when it comes to public property, any right to freedom of not being filmed without his permission goes out the window.

How do you feel about this issue? Would you be okay with someone filming you and gaining profit from that footage? Does your view change if you are in a more vulnerable situation, say after a few drinks at a bar? Now what about if you were running for a political position, or say starring in a television show? Canadian law tells us there is a distinction between individuals based on their career choices. Let us know what you think by connecting with us on Facebook or leaving us a comment in the section below.

Politicians and Smartphones -- Corporate Video Production Toronto Politicians and Smartphones — Corporate Video Production Toronto

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Kids On-Set: How to Deal

Be Prepared For Your Next Shoot: How to Deal with Kids On-Set

kids on-set

If you have ever produced a video using children as talent then you know the advantages and disadvantages. Kids can be great, and truly add a fun atmosphere to any set. However, with their limited attention spans and nack for getting into trouble, they can take you on a whirlwind, and cause a lot of unnecessary wasted time if you don’t deal with them well.

Here are some tips for dealing with kids on-set:

Shoot in short segment

As I said, and we all know, kids have short attention spans. And if you don’t have any children of your own, I mean really short attention spans. Which is why you want to try and break up each scene so you can shoot in as short of segments as possible. This way, when the camera is rolling and the director yells action you only need the child to be in character for as long as it is until the director yells cut. If this happens to be a 5 minute scene and you are filming it in one take, well good luck keeping that kid focused. But if you are able to break that scene up into 10-30 second shots, you are much more likely to be able to get the child to do what you need.

Make it a game

Kids love games. And being a kid on-set is exciting for them. They have it in their minds that it is going to be the most fun day of their life, until they realize the reality of what being on-set is really like. To keep it fun for them, and make sure they stay focused and engaged, try to make what you need them to do in the scene a game in some way. When I was recently dealing with children on a shoot, I would use what I needed them to do for me as a competition. “Whoever can stare at that screen the longest and smile wins”. Although to you and I this might seem like the most boring game alive, children love having your attention and feeling like a winner. Just make sure that you reward them after they have completed the task, and let them know how happy and proud of them you are. Wayne Parker in his article on Child Discipline 101 outlines this theory,

“Offering an easy reward or incentive can help the listening behavior improve.”

Save the sugar

Although using sweet treats might seem like a great plan to lure the child to do what you want, it will most likely backfire on you. Especially if this is a long shoot, you want the child to be alert, but not running around like a mad man. Providing the child with a healthy snack and ample drinks to stay hydrated is key. If you do think that the specific scene would benefit from a hyper child, and you cannot get them to act that way without sugar, then it may be a solution. But be careful, and make sure that scene is scheduled for the end of the shoot and not at the beginning, or else that child will crash and you will need to let them nap it off.

Hope that some of these tips are useful on your next shoot where you need to deal with a kid on-set.

Kids On-Set: How to Deal

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

NABS Honor Roll 2013

Keywest Was Inducted Into the 2013 NABS Honor Roll & Couldn’t Be More Proud

nabs honor roll awardKeywest has been working with NABS, The National Advertising Benevolent Society, over the past several years. NABS is a great organization which helps those in the advertising industry who are simply down on their luck and need a helping hand.

Keywest values and appreciates the work that NABS has been able to do since their inception. That is why we have chosen to partner with them to help support their efforts through the power of video.

Video as we all know can reach into the hearts and minds of individuals and help them gain a better understanding of a certain message. Which is why video has been such an important tool for the NABS team, and many other non-profit organizations.

This past Thursday, January 30th 2014, NABS held an appreciation event at the Rosewater Room in downtown Toronto. A lovely location, with delicious food and a warm and receptive crowd. The Keywest team had a wonderful time, and was happy to join in the celebration of all that had been achieved during the 2013 year, as well as to hear who had made the 2013 NABS Honor Roll.

At the event Keywest was pleased and honored to be awarded a plaque, and to be inducted with great company into the NABS 2013 Honor Roll. We even decided to tweet about it.

Had a lovely time at the #NABSParty! Thank you for making @keywest_video a member of the @NABS_Canada 2013 NABS Honour Roll.

And they tweeted back!

@keywest_video Thanks for joining us tonight! Congrats on making it onto the #NABSHonorRoll

A sizzle reel showcasing clips from various events NABS has held over the past year, as well as clips from other videos, was created by our team and shown at the event. Check it out below.

NABS Honor Roll 2013

Monday, February 3, 2014

Social Cause Videos: Why Humor Works

If You Are Creating Social Cause Videos Here Are Some Reasons Why Humor Can Be Your Best Method of Choice

social cause videos

We see them all the time. Videos dealing with human rights issues, animal abuse, malnourished children in developing countries, and every other problem under the sun. We see them at charity events, as PSA’s on television, and promotional pieces disseminated through social media. Social cause videos are everywhere, and the competition for attention is fierce.

Attention = money, which means the more attention and thus funds an organization can collect for their social cause, the more good they can in turn create. So the bottom line is, when creating a video to highlight any sort of cause, getting the most eyeballs to pay attention should always be the end goal.

With so many issues to chose from, it is often difficult to know what you should really care about. What you should invest your own time and hard earned money into supporting. By being an organization that stands out from the pack, through whatever means necessary such as through unique social cause videos, it can be very beneficial to the social cause itself.

Humor is a way to draw people in. It is a way to make a far reaching issue more relate-able. It is a universal language. Check out how these organizations below created social cause videos with the use of humor, in two very different instances, to shed more light on their issues.

The $#^! Kids Say (National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children)

The title itself drew me in. It make me think back to the days when Bill Cosby starred as the host of Kids Say the Darnest Things. The start of the video began just the same way, with children saying absurdly cute things; “all pigs are pink even boy pigs”, “I was six on the 50th of November”, and “do babies’ mommies teach them how to laugh”?

But the humorous observations from the children quickly take a different tone. The outlandish comments soon turn into ones that make the viewer think. The humor is launched into a tool in order to zero in on the video’s true message. Do we sometimes take the funny stuff kids say as nothing more than fluff? Is there a deeper meaning there?

Follow The Frog (Rainforest Alliance)

This video takes a much different approach. They use humor full and outright. But they too use it as a tool.

Follow the Frog follows a delightfully misguided and ambitious young man who quits his job and leaves his family in order to pursue, and make right, the injustices that are happening to the rainforest. Through the crazy and adorable trials in his journey, the voice-over tells us all of the things that we as the viewer “aren’t going to do”. At the end of the video, after we have followed the guy on his failed attempt at doing something to help the rainforest, we learn ‘what you can do is follow the frog’.

This brilliant video turns a very important issue into a social cause video that people want to share. Even people not necessarily interested in saving the rainforest can enjoy the humor throughout this video.

In both instances, humor was used as a powerful tool to draw in the viewer. In the first video for the NSPCC, humor was utilized simply as a tactic to draw viewers in and create a sharp juxtaposition against the fact that certain off-beat things that children say should be taken more seriously. While in the later video created for the Rainforest Alliance, humor is the deciding factor which makes it such a success. It is funny because we can relate to it, yet on the same hand it is so far fetched.

When creating your next social cause videos, consider adding a dash of humor to the mix.

Social Cause Videos: Why Humor Works