Sean Smith, creator, and founder behind VIDR, spent a long time in advertising as an art director and creative thinker. That was all before he picked up a camera and fell in love with the idea of video and content creation.
As an Art director growing up in the industry from the early 2000’s, Sean had the opportunity to work with great brands. It was in this creative melting pot that he fell in love with branding and marketing.
Sean, ever the entrepreneur, had a startup mentality, and while he was already well-versed in filming branded content from documentaries to corporate events. While the content was beautiful and well delivered, the logistics and cost behind this type of content creation was expensive and time consuming for both clients and creatives.
So VIDR was born: a content creation company that was lean, agile, and disruptive. The traditional production timeline of content production was slow, needed too much gear and too many people. This together with a lot of expectations from clients was a recipe for missed opportunities, according to Sean.
Sean looked to how he could make this process more streamlined, how he could help clients get the desired results faster and cheaper than before.
However, over and above more cost effective and efficient content creation, it was also about creating content that was on trend to what consumers find engaging.
The New Face of Content
There are two major sides to the content we’re seeing online at the moment. Firstly, branded content. The traditional TV commercial content is no longer what people want to see. Sean’s goal has been to speak to agencies and help them release the idea of “the generic”.
According to Smith, crafted content isn’t nearly as necessary as it once was. You don’t need to spend fortunes on a grade. It can all happen on-site, with an iPhone, an iPad, and a creative who is willing to put in the work.
The best part? The content that gets churned out is exactly what consumers these days are looking for. Bit-sized, instant, and on-demand.
Content in 2020 is about the consumer, and not so much about the brands itself. Consumers love content they can relate to, and these shorter, bite-sized pieces mimic what they themselves create on Instagram on a daily basis.
The Future of Advertising
According to Smith, a lot of brands are looking deeper than their colour palette these days. Advertising is going through a serious decline, especially with the coronavirus epidemic. There is a need for brands to look more human, and to get in touch with the human element of their brands.
For 2020, Sean’s goal was to use technology to scale his ideas. He is still looking to help brands think of how to creatively make content that speaks to the human element of their brands.
He also wants to showcase the variety of new types of content that can be created with the technology and apps that VidR uses. All this while upskilling and improving the knowledge of content creators around South Africa.
COVID and VIDR
Smith has seen many people go through really tough times amidst the pandemic. No one knows what is coming next, but shops are slowly starting to open up online and start selling again. There are a lot of great things coming out of lockdown, but Smith says it’s important to remember the hardships many have gone through emotionally, especially with lockdown.
A lot of people are only just starting to crawl back to themselves and realign. The time is coming where people are going to be speaking about their brands in a very different way than before. They want to create meaning, create connection with other humans.
It’s no longer about content or selling a product. It’s about human connection.
To hear more about Sean and his business, follow the link here.