#10: Deeper Purpose And Meaning To Visual Storytelling – Michael Cardwell

On the tenth episode of the 1 to 10 podcast, we sat down with Michael Cardwell, Owner and Creative Director of Digital Brew.

Episode Overview

They say that a picture is worth a thousand words.

So if animation is around 24 frames per second, that’s 24,000 words per second.

Imagine what you could say to someone in thirty seconds.

Animation has been fascinating method of visual storytelling since Steam Boat Willy hit screens in 1928, and this media provides the opportunity to creatively and unlimitedly tell your story.

But first, you need to know your businesses’ purpose and how you’d like to develop that narrative.

This is where Michael Cardwell, Owner and Creative Director of Digital Brew, comes in. He and his team have been creating award winning live action and animated videos since 2011.

His team is made up of marketers, so they make sure the stories they tell look cool and get business results.

Crafting the Story

In order for your video to succeed in a world flooded with visual content, it has to be intriguing and engaging. No one wants to see a video that’s just made up of a list of things you do.

The next level animation that Michael is talking about is more than just an intriguing story from a book. You could certainly do
all this via text, but people would rather watch a video than read.

“The video is the conversation starter; it’s not meant to replace the conversation.”

When the possibilities are endless so is the range of your storytelling.

This sounds like a great thing until you consider the scope of what your business entails. The more personal it is to you – perhaps the culmination of your life’s work – the more you may have to say about it.

“We try to take those things that are important – the actual functionality of the tech,” Michael says, “And tell a story about how the tech solves the problems out there.”

In the end, most people don’t need to know everything about the product or service you offer. They need to know how it solves the problem at hand or meets their needs.

The Creative Process

“The visual comes in as a way to quickly tell the story in an engaging way so that people can quickly understand what you do without having to read a two page document,” Michael tells us.

It’s a high level overview of what your product does and get the viewer excited about it.

A great deal of the creative process isn’t about creating content. Companies have painstakingly created products, services, etc. and likely invested in a multitude of marketing materials that serve any number of endeavors.

Telling a story is like whittling. Only what is important to the end vision and intended purpose remains, and it’s sculpted into something compelling.

The first step of Michael’s process is having a creative phone call where he and his team dive into the organization.

What are their goals?
Target market?
What problems do they solve and how?
What are the key value props?
Who’s the competition?

These straightforward questions help them get to the core of a company’s purpose and values; then they write a script for the video.

And this all happens before they move into the visual side of the project.

“You just have to find what works. Try a lot of different things.”

“The owner of the company has put a lot of blood, sweat and tears into making their business a reality,” Michael admits, “Everything is super important, but we have to get it down to a narrower view for the consumer.”

The creative avenues for animation are only limited by imagination and skill. For your business the old cliché remains true: quality over quantity produces a creative story that innovatively shares the purpose and value of your product or serve.

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This post is based on an interview with Michael Cardwell from Digital Brew.

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