522 Video Questions No. 4 – Does Industry Knowledge Matter?

People always want to know what experience we have in “their space.” For example, when speaking with potential clients, I often hear:

  • “What kind of animated videos have you done in the manufacturing software space?”
  • “Can you send me some samples of interviews you’ve done with scientists that have a focus in biochemical engineering?”
  • “Have you ever worked with a non-profit in the education space?”
does-industry-matter-manufacturing

Well, we don’t have any animated videos in the manufacturing software space and we’ve never interviewed biochemical engineers. But does that mean you should go find someone that has?

If you’re only willing to talk to companies that have worked in your space, you’re going to significantly limit your pool of potential video production companies to choose from. The best video production companies out there usually don’t have such a narrow focus on certain industries because it often doesn’t make sense financially or creatively.

On the other hand, the best filmmakers and video producers can take a new concept or idea, learn about it, embody it and then create compelling content with it. For example, what about Vince Gilligan, creator of ‘Breaking Bad’? Gilligan didn’t know the first thing about crystal meth when he came up with the idea for his show. He knew he wanted to make a show about a guy going through a midlife crisis and was able to leverage outside sources to make sure his scripts were accurate, “We have a [chemist] named Dr. Donna Nelson at the University of Oklahoma who is very helpful to us and vets our scripts to make sure our chemistry dialogue is accurate and up to date. We also have a chemist with the Drug Enforcement Agency based out of Dallas who has just been hugely helpful to us.”

Gilligan didn’t need to be an expert in chemistry, drug-dealing or crystal meth ‘cooking’ to be able to create one of the most critically acclaimed shows of all time. He just made sure to do his homework along the way.

does-industry-matter-architecture

As for 522, we don’t have any doctors on staff, but we’ve worked with everything from children with cancer to interventional radiology. We don’t have any veterans on staff, but we’ve won awards for the work we’ve done with TAPS (Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors). I could go on and on.

The moral of the story is this: It’s okay to ask the question and it’s definitely a bonus if a company has worked in your space. BUT, don’t let that be the prerequisite for working with you, because the best filmmakers in the biz don’t need to be experts in a field to create fantastic work.

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