When the zombies came to town….

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It’s unbelievable how quickly things change. One moment you’re in the office, the next you’re caught up in a zombie apocalypse on Church Street. Of course – It’s nothing we couldn’t handle!

The recent surge of multi-million pound film companies in Birmingham and the Black Country has sparked a whirlwind of interest amongst locals, as the stars of the big screen move right onto the doorstep. Celebrities have been using Midland film sets for the likes of BBC show ’24 hours in the past’ and perhaps more breathtaking, the filming of Hollywood movie ‘She Who Brings Gifts’.

Stars doing their thing amongst the streets of Birmingham were the likes of Gemma Atterton and Paddy Considine,  and with such credible reputations it’s a credit to Birmingham City Council and Dudley Council for being so welcoming, rivalling the popular trend setters in Bill de Blasio’s New York City.

The county’s reputation as reputable and trustworthy with beautiful architecture stands up to the mark as the perfect film set, allowing Colm McCarthy and his team to shut down two busy streets during a working day and turn them into a dystopia.

Colm McCarthy is obviously a fan of what Birmingham has to offer, previously filming the BBC smash hit Peaky Blinders with lead actor Laurie Borg talking about, “bringing the of myth Birmingham, back to the people of Birmingham.”[1]

It’s never easy to pick a key Birmingham street, turn it into an overgrown wasteland and then back into a business district again in one day. Onlookers marvelled as the likes of Paddy Considine and Glenn Close fought off groaning zombies to keep their cerebral matter safe and sound.

Not only were the characters in safe hands with Gemma Arteton at the helm, but Birmingham City Council has made sure that the reputation and trustworthiness of the city has been boosted by their endorsement of this apocalyptic thrill ride.

At kinetic HQ, Upon hearing that Church and Berwick Street were turned into a war zone, we grabbed our survival gear (coats) and headed for a look. An insight into the film industry isn’t something you get every day! Our close-up view of all the technical equipment direct from the hills of Hollywood shows how a future splattered by brain-munching zombies starts life as a camera crew, pedestrian barriers and rigging.

This may not sound exciting to an outsider but for us it was almost as fascinating as ogling the celebrity presence. Why I hear you cry? Our clients Eventserv supply key implements to the film and event industry that, as we have witnessed, are vital in the efficiency and quality control of a blockbuster picture along with their blockbuster service.

We’re not zombies, so feel free to pick our brains (hypothetically speaking of course). Leave you comments below!

[1] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TynES3kLLOI

Lights, Camera, Action – PR and the moving image

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Today, we consume information in many different ways. Technology has thrown out a multitude of digital, social and interactive platforms that help open up a world of content to engage, excite and connect audiences in ways that they have never done before.

Moving image is one of the most rapidly-growing sectors in communications with innovative new content sharing platforms being developed every day.

But helping to bring video skills into the creative domain isn’t just about knowing your Vimeo from your Vine and your YouTube from your Yahoo. It’s about having the ability to produce and share compelling content effectively, giving PR and marketing agencies fresh new ways of breathing life into their messages.

Coming from a film production background, I was a little bit apprehensive about making the transition into PR and communications. Would I be able to step up to the plate when it came to delivering world class video material for Kinetic and our portfolio of clients?

My first task was to produce a new video for the Kinetic website, providing the audience with an insight on how to build reputations you can trust. My mission; to produce a piece of content that is compelling, inspiring and intelligent – to make the website useful for anyone looking to build trust in their reputation and take Kinetic’s video offering up to the next level.

It was a big challenge but, as soon as I got my hands on the camera kit and into the studio, my anxieties melted away and I felt like I was back in my element. Fortunately for me, Angela was a true natural in front of the camera and excelled in delivering her message in an inspiring and engaging way.

So why is it so important to use video to help illustrate your message in PR?

Did you know?

–          Only 20% of web visitors will read the majority of text but 80% will stop to watch a video

–          Videos are 53 times more likely to appear on Google’s first page

–          Cognitive psychology shows that stimulating both auditory and visual senses increases retention by around 58%

–          YouTube is the 2nd largest search engine after Google

–          Adding a video to your website makes it 6 times more likely to convert a browser to a paying customer.

There is no doubt that video is an extremely powerful tool for businesses. Whether you want to say something about your company, promote a new product or service or just make your web presence or YouTube channel more interesting and engaging for your audience – moving image can provide the perfect solution.

Public relations isn’t just about getting column inches and writing media releases. It is about fully integrating communications solutions across traditional and digital new and rich media platforms.

I enjoyed my time working in film because it allowed me to develop a broad range of technical skills across a number of key areas. It was fast-paced, diverse and often unpredictable but the transition into PR has given me that and so much more.

It has allowed me to adapt those skills and apply them into diverse communications plans, helping to bring a fresh new take on each individual client’s message. It’s not just fun, it’s fast, exciting and above all, it’s now.