what steve jobs taught me about video production

Steve Jobs for all his well-documented quirks is likely to go down in history alongside the likes of Henry Ford as one of the people who helped society to progress most rapidly through a devoted and passionate approach to his ideas.

Some of Steve Jobs’ greatest achievements relate to the advancements made by Apple, under his reign, in video production. Jobs was driven to consistently improve Apple products making them not only more professional, but also more accessible and easier to use. In 1999 iMovie and Final Cut were created. Final Cut is what many feature films are edited on and iMovie gave absolutely anyone the opportunity to digitally edit their own films.

You can’t praise Apple without praising Steve Jobs. His passion, drive and vision are responsible for the range of products that have reached and changed the lives of millions of people. There were key principles behind his success and we are going to look at how those principles can be applied to your video production strategy.

1. Do what you love

Have you ever noticed how the projects you enjoy working on the most, are the ones that you are most passionate about? Jobs was driven by a passion for making computers available to everyday people. It is difficult to achieve anything without passion.

So when undertaking a video production project, be sure to find something in what you are trying to sell that means something to you. It will make a difference to your approach and the outcomes you achieve.

2. Put a dent in the universe

Put simply, have a higher purpose. Otherwise what is the point of being here?

Applied to video production, this could be related to having a video marketing strategy that helps you to get to the core of your businesses existence – why are you doing what you are doing? If you are going to invest in producing video, make sure that it is tied in to a wider strategy so that you know what you are trying to achieve, why you are trying to achieve it, and how you will know when you have got there.

3. Kick start your brain

Jobs believed that creativity is about connecting things. This doesn’t mean stealing ideas, it means looking at what already exists, making links where they haven’t been made before and therefore creating something new. A basic Apple example would be the introduction of the built-in iSight camera on Mac computers in 2005. This made video chatting easier for people, as well as making it possible for people to record video of themselves in an instant.

Applied to video production, think about how you will sell your product to your viewer. How you present your product to your viewer by connecting the product to their lives is what will turn a watch of your video into a conversion.

4. Sell dreams not products

Jobs said he created Apple products to help people fulfill their dreams. In this sense, people who buy Apple products are not considered consumers, they are respected as people with aspirations.

Applied to video production, this means looking at your viewers with different eyes. Don’t see them purely as consumers, think of them as people with goals. It is then your role to show them how your product can help them reach those goals. In other words, identify the problem and show them how you are providing a solution.

5. Say no to 1000 things

Jobs said that he was as proud for what he hadn’t done as what he had done. This was evident in the simple, clean, uncluttered product design that Apple is so famous for; it eliminates the unnecessary so that the necessary can speak.

Applied to video production, this means knowing what it is that you want to say in your video and saying it. This will mean different things to different people, but if you have a product that speaks for itself, you don’t need a video that bombards the viewer with fancy graphics for example… unless graphics is what you are trying to sell, of course.

6. Create insanely great experiences

The Apple Store is the world’s best retailer for a reason. Their set up means that they make emotional connections with people, both customers and employees. Not only can you try out their products in the shop, but you can also be supported in the process by ‘experts’ and even ‘geniuses’. These techniques create a customer service experience that matches the quality of the product. The stores are built around showing people what they can achieve with Apple products and not just the products themselves.

Applied to video production, the possibilities are becoming greater than ever before. Other than creating videos that are perfect for your audience in terms of using the right images, graphics and presenters on screen, there are also more creative ways available for enhancing your customers experience of your video. Interactive video is a good example of the technology available. See the video below launched by Sesame Street in 2011 for an idea of some of the possibilities.

7. Master the message

Jobs turned product launches into an art form. He has shown that it doesn’t matter how good your product is if you don’t know how to get people interested and excited by it.

Maybe this has inspired you to appear in your own video so that you can tell your viewers directly what it is about your product that you love and why they should love it too. If not you, then you need to choose a presenter that masters the message as though it were their own and who is suited to your target market.

We are going to leave you with an old video of Jobs talking about Apple’s marketing strategy being about values. Still as applicable today as it was then.