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Shooting For Success

Below is the latest in our series featuring memorable talks from our 2014 frank gathering.

As communicators, we all hunger for the magic list of “to-dos” that will make us game changers.

Sometimes, though, we have to start by admitting that what we’re doing is wrong before we can do it right.

Take, for example, videos produced to advance social causes. So many fail – no matter the worthy cause or deserving individuals they’re meant to help – simply because they are unwatchable.

Speaking last year at the frank 2014 gathering in Gainesville, filmmakers Kristina Robbins and Marjan Safinia, from the Departmentof Expansion, attributed that problem to bad scripting. Something that goes like this:

Act One:  Depress and overwhelm your audience with greats facts and realities that make them feel powerless, and maybe even, guilty.

Act Two: Have an executive use lots of jargon to explain the mission statement, cram in a couple of talking points and maybe list some programs.

Act Three: Tell people how the work your organization does–none of which viewers will actually be able to experience–truly creates hope and changes lives.

A better approach, they say, is to create movies that tell interesting stories and that take people on a journey that ends someplace different from where they started. And let viewers draw their own conclusions.

According to Robbins and Safinia, when used properly, tools of documentary storytelling can help engage, surprise and bring new audiences to your cause.

Watch the video below and learn how to make films that hook audiences, draw them in and get them to do what you want.

[vimeo id=”90161161″]

Posted: February 20, 2015