A Blog Post About ILC Films’ Blog and Blog Posts

A Blog Post

Yes, I know you know that what you are reading happens to be a blog post. But today I will be talking about blogs and blog posts, so I have to make sure to say “blog” as many times as is possible in any one blog post.

Now on with it. ILC Films is a wedding videography company based in Austin, Texas. According to their website:

ILC Films is a talented team of cinematographers . . . With over 5 years of experience, I can honestly say we all get excited for each and every wedding we film . . . We tell our stories as elegantly and unobtrusively as possible. Our films capture the events we cover precisely as they happen.

ILC Films has some very high quality work on their site. If you have the time, I would recommend taking a look at a few of the videos they’ve done. But what about their social media presence? How apt are they when it comes to, let’s say… blogging? (Act surprised. You know you want to.)

A Blog

ILC Films’ blog landing page is somewhat minimalist, though in a very prim and pressed way. The menu header that adorns their website keeps a consistent feel for the blog, though the rest of their website is much more visually engrossing. The chat tab in the bottom right corner is not obtrusive like some I’ve encountered, because it hides itself after several seconds of page exposure. The blog’s overall feel and branding matches the rest of their website: subdued, elegant, and easy to ingest. Below you’ll find a quick look at the landing page:

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ILC Film’s blog is quite new, as scrolling down the page reveals three posts from January 2015, the most recent from January 26, and one FAQ post from November 2014. Thus, while the frequency of their blog posts is not yet at an ideal point, the recency of their posts is excellent and better than many other small companies.

The blog posts themselves are almost identical in look and feel to their landing page counterparts. What, you require another picture? Alright, here’s a specific blog post:

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Let’s play spot the differences. Take a sharpie and circle the differences between the pictures on your device’s screen. How many did you find? If the answer is three, you win! (But only if you disregarded what I said about the sharpie.)

If it weren’t for the change in page title, the disappearance of the chat tab and the slight change in subtitle links, you might think that I had pulled a fast one on you. Now the real questions is, does the near identical nature of these pages detract from the blog? For me, it does not; though I do wish I could click on the “Our Blog” page title on the blog post page to take me back to the blog landing page.

A Blog Post Breakdown

The content of ILC Film’s blog is organized in two ways: By archival date, as can be seen on the right side of their landing page, and by tags, similar to how YouTube helps organize its content. Here you can see the tags from the bottom of the blog page that you just looked at mere moments ago:

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While these tags do little for the organization of ILC Films’ blog right now, they will certainly be helpful as more content is created. The only author for the blog posts at this point is ILC Films, so no distinction by author is yet necessary. And though there is not specific differentiation between the types of content on their blog, the two types of content they do have are either informative stories about their work for their clients or the single FAQ post. As ILC Films continues to grow their blog, I’d love to see some more variety in what they post, though undoubtedly their client work stories could serve as the bread and butter of their content.

The limited content that ILC Films does have on its blog all points to its main (if not only) target market: those looking to get married. According to an article by the Pew Research Center, the average age for marriage in the United States is currently about 27 years old for women and 29 years old for men. That means that adults in their late twenties are the main target market for ILC Films and its blog. So what is their blog doing to reach this audience?

Specifically, there is nothing that leaps out at me, screaming, “This content is for adults in their late twenties looking to get married!” Then again, ILC Films’ target market is very broad in its demographics, meaning that it could be difficult for them to pinpoint a specific type or style of content to best reach their main audience. The content that they do have includes many components that those looking to get married could certainly benefit from, though. By placing the client videos at the top of the blog posts, they emphasize their content quality and style. Each blog post also includes links to all of the individuals involved with the planning of each wedding that they shoot, making these posts potential treasure troves of resources for those looking for help with a wedding. The FAQ, while only one post, is also useful for anyone with questions about ILC Films’ services.

You may have noticed in the last picture that you can leave a comment at the bottom of each blog post. This is a great call to action, though I wish there were more ways to interact with ILC Films, especially when it comes to sharing their posts on social media. I could not for the life of me find any way to share a post directly to Facebook, Twitter, or any other social media site. And even though the comment section for each post is a great start, unfortunately, none of the posts have comments yet.

A Blogger’s Opinion

So what’s my consensus? ILC Films has a promising blog that could continue to grow in numerous ways. The content they do have is applicable to their target market and is pleasing to look at, but they need to continue to amass more of it and provide ways for individuals (such as myself) to share their blog posts and interact with them as a company. While maintaining a blog as a small company can be difficult and time-consuming, it can be equally rewarding, and I hope that ILC Films will continue to do great wedding videos, captured in an ever-growing and blossoming blog.

A Meaningful Glance at the Social Media of MediaStorm

MediaStorm

Ever heard of it? (Hint: it’s a company.) I hadn’t until quite recently when the founder of MediaStorm, Brian Storm, came to speak at Ball State. On MediaStorm’s website they write about themselves:

MediaStorm is an award-winning film production and interactive design studio whose work gives voice and meaning to the most pressing issues of our time. Our stories demystify complex issues, humanize statistics, and inspire audiences to take action on issues that matter.

What they do is really cool, and where they come from is truly inspiring. I could write an invigorating article detailing their company profile, I’m sure, but that’s not why I’m here today, is it? The faint aroma of coffee in the air, the clickity-clack of winter-chilled fingers on computer keys…

It’s time to talk social media!

Four Profiles to Consider

After googling MediaStorm and investigating its presence on the web, I am able to say with a clear conscience that MediaStorm is indeed the name of each of MediaStorm’s profiles on their major social media pages. Don’t believe me? Then stop reading now. Reading privileges revoked. But seriously, just take a look:


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Irrefutable proof. (No Photoshop, I promise.) And look at the consistency! The same or very similar intriguing lens/camera pictures as the banners for each page, the blue and white logo as the avatar of each page, the consistent and current presence of each post on each platform; MediaStorm has it down!

If we take a visit back to their website that I mentioned earlier, we can certainly see the same brand consistency that MediaStorm has established throughout their social media. Here’s another pic, just for fun:

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The polished blue, black, and off-white that adorn their social media pages all point back to the themes of their own website. Well played.

I managed to find my way to their site easily enough from each social media profile page. A quick click was all that was ever needed on all but the LinkedIn page, where an equally quick scroll brought me within critical clicking range. But what about the reverse?

I hopped over to their homepage and browsed it from top to bottom. No direct links to social media here. I tried my luck and clicked on their “Blog” button in their menu bar. Success! Down the right side of this page were links to all of their pertinent social media profile pages, save their LinkedIn page. That was nowhere to be found, though in many regards, I don’t blame them for this choice. While MediaStorm most likely utilizes LinkedIn to their benefit, I would venture a guess that they would prefer more people visit their main site rather than a LinkedIn profile that merely describes who they are and what they do in a more constricted format, sans any examples of their work. So while I still had to click once to connect with them, they did have all of their appropriate links all in one place that was easily accessible and intuitively located.

Stay on Target

If you have visited MediaStorm’s website by now (I keep putting this link in for a reason, you know), you will have realized that MediaStorm is a mélange of media and technology, a purveyor of content to the public and productions for clients. But that is shifting. According to Brian Storm, they are now seeking to begin creating more content on their own, utilizing the media streaming platform that they have designed to host their content and offer it to the public. Currently, you can subscribe for $23.95 a year to view their content (36 videos and films), or you can pay per video with their “Pay Per Story.” To me, this is an exceedingly cool idea. But who is their target audience?

An article published by Civic Science, an online polling and publishing company, explores several reports on how different age groups consume media content in the United States. Unsurprisingly, they reveal that the majority of adults 18-24 list streaming as their primary method of ingesting media (30%), as well as adults 25-34 (24%). It would thus seem that MediaStorm is targeting those age 18-34 with their developing “Pay Per Story” platform, as these individuals will be the ones most likely to watch content online.

The story doesn’t end here, though. To truly understand who MediaStorm is targeting, we must consider their brand and their content itself. As mentioned earlier, they believe that their “stories demystify complex issues, humanize statistics, and inspire audiences to take action on issues that matter.” I believe that they are not targeting all adults ages 18-34, but rather those who are interested in social causes, the welfare of their nation, their world, and their fellow human beings, and who want to learn more so that they can live better.

While at first glance it may seem that MediaStorm could have a difficult time bringing in revenue when they only offer 36 pieces of content as opposed to the millions available on Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, and even YouTube, I imagine that MediaStorm is banking on the idea that those who are interested in what they produce will gladly pay a very reasonable amount to view potentially life-changing material.

Back to Social Media (and Not Social Causes)

I’m discussing social media, though, and not just the justification for MediaStorm’s choices as a producer and purveyor of publicly offered content. With what I’ve mentioned in mind, what would seem to be MediaStorm’s most effective social media presence? Admittedly, I am rather new to Twitter myself, and I can’t remember the last time that I really used Google+, but that said, it appears that their Facebook page is still their most successful page at the moment.

MediaStorm has been working with many companies throughout the majority of their existence and has just recently begun expanding to the general consumer market. Besides this fact, while Twitter continues to gain ground as a social media site, Facebook remains the number one utilized social media site throughout the world (see this article posted in a tweet by MediaStorm). Thus, as MediaStorm continues to target the online streaming video audience, I believe that their active Twitter page will play a more prominent role in their social media presence, but for now, they have the most interaction taking place on Facebook, due to their client relations and the current global usage of social media.

I’ll be on the lookout for MediaStorm as they continue to evolve, and who knows? I may even subscribe to them. It’s hard for a video-producing techie not to get excited about a company that has gone from nothing to competing with Netflix, so hard in fact, that I have already followed and liked them. Even if they end up going in a different direction entirely, I think that their social media presents their best face to the public, a face that is active, engaging, and even pretty to look at.