Content Lessons from Hollywood with Danielle Hope Diamond
Danielle Hope Diamond is the Founder & Executive Creative Director of Epiq Media, allowing brands to partner with the Hollywood talents.
Imagine company ads that feel like a TV show!
Yes, this is her passion.
In Epiq, she and her team combine B2B marketing strategies with creative content for brands like Drift, Adidas & Rosetta Stone.
Their motto is to create narrative content that people will enjoy watching!
Here is how modern marketing looks to Danielle and how they started their journey in Epiq to fill the gaps in storytelling and creative production.
Meet The Guest
Danielle’s approach to storytelling
The first gap Danielle saw in the industry was storytelling.
She decided to merge real Hollywood creativity with marketing to produce narrative style engaging content.
“In the past few years, we've seen storytelling really pop up as a buzzword that everyone's using. But what I found is that a lot of people who are quote-unquote storytellers haven't actually studied storytelling. So, that's the first gap that we fill.” she said.
Epiq works with actual playwrights to deliver a great story for the brands they're working with.
Deploying an integrated marketing strategy is a big industry gap
The second industry gap Danielle saw was marketing.
Her experience in production companies in New York City explains a lot.
"Before I started Epic, I was actually working at a big production company in New York City, and I absolutely hated it because production companies were making an arm making pretty-looking content, but with no marketing strategy that is really integrated into what they're creating."
The unique thing that Epiq brings to the table is that even most production agencies can tell a creative story, there is still a lack of knowledge around the target market.
Means, a low value is inevitable!
Epiq solves this dilemma and combines the power of creative storytelling with marketing with the people experts in their field.
Before creating, think if you’d consume that content and still had fun
Danielle talks about how the content production process looks like:
"Every time we work on a piece of content, we ask ourselves if we'd actually want to watch that. We emulate the same process we would use when writing a play or a TV show or a movie. So, it's very collaborative.”
Generating unique and creative ideas and combining the marketing best practices is the exact way to reach the goals.
That’s what makes Epiq so powerful in providing a story around the company targets and determining the type of video content.
Screenwriting is very different from blog copywriting!
The secret power of Epiq is they’re using actual scriptwriters to create engaging content.
Danielle explains how it would be a huge mistake not to hire a screenwriter to create a brand script:
"One of the biggest mistakes that I see companies make is when they write their brand script or their funny brand video, they don't actually hire screenwriters. They're using copywriters. Blog copywriting is very different from scriptwriting and screenwriting.”
They use the same movie scriptwriting methods to produce B2B creative but in a more straightforward way.
After finalizing the actual narrative pieces, they integrate the marketing dynamics to help their clients reach their goals.
Comedic-style brand videos are converting very well
People tend to get engaged with brands who are making fun of their pain points!
Making people laugh at their problems creates a strong first impression in their eyes.
That's how they get ready to solve specific problems with the solutions offered by the company.
Danielle explains why narrative-style videos in B2B works amazingly:
“The reason why that works is that it is almost like a first date for your homepage!”
No matter what the industry is, Epiq builds an emotional connection with the audience
Epiq considers the industry to address specific problems in a holistic and fundamental human way.
They see the authentic engagement of B2B creatives by making people smile and building an emotional connection with the brand.
"When it comes to the fundamental principles of creating something people want to watch is making someone smile and connecting with them on an emotional level.", Danielle says.
Working with Epiq means working with real comedians
Danielle explains her thoughts on how effective it is to work with real comedians around B2B creatives;
"I think it's in Dan S. Kennedy's marketing book where he says, don't try to do comedy, leave that to the comedians. This is why you come and work with Epic because we are the comedians."
Of course, for the companies that are not yet ready to invest in such a production, there are other ways!
They can still produce informative yet engaging content for their audience with much less budget.
Especially on LinkedIn as well the other mediums, authentic videos taken by iPhone works really well.
Put yourself into your audience's shoes
Emphasizing with your audience is very important to reach your marketing goals and deliverables.
This is a great approach to understand better what they do in their everyday life.
In Epiq, roleplaying is the main ingredient of understanding the audience!
"Put yourself in their shoes and ask the question; who are you creating this for? That’s what we actually do as a company. For those of us internally who have performance and acting backgrounds, we like to get really specific on who that viewer is as a person and as a character.”
So, getting to know your audience is a great approach and you can start by asking some questions like:
- How is my audience spending their time during the day?
- What keeps them at night?
- What do they do for a living?
- In which channels are they engaging the most?
Epiq deploys seamless technology with cinematic robots
Epiq uses robots and cameras with excellent shooting capabilities for companies offering physical products.
Those tools provide great motion control, high speed and quality for very cool product videos.
According to Danielle, it’s a great way to capture people’s attention within the first 3 seconds!
She gives an example of how it works:
"We just did a Tampax ad in partnership with Snapchat. We rigged the Tampax box to launch the tampons in the air. So they basically flew up and then went back down, but that's a really fast motion. We have a special camera called the Phantom Flex, which shoots over a thousand frames a second. Then you use the robot to track it. So it's a combination of a lot of technology, rigging and science to get the perfect shot. Exactly how you want to feature it.”
Quality over quantity! The magic is connecting with the right people
The essential part is to build a real connection with the people consuming creative content.
"It's less about the number of eyeballs and more about getting the right eyeballs on it.", she says.
The impact is much more significant than numbers because it’s immeasurable yet the most valuable thing for a brand.
For example, Apple hires actual filmmakers, dancers and writers to create something really cool narrative style content.
Danielle says, when they target filmmakers, they target people in music and production who are doing really creative things as of their biggest target audiences.
Get inspired by others to be more creative with your marketing
It's always good to get inspired by the other successful brands!
Seeing what makes them great is the halfway to get close to it.
It doesn't really matter if it's B2B or B2C as there's always something there to generate ideas for your brand.
Danielle believes that it's a great approach for being creative in marketing as she says:
"Go and find YouTubers that you are watching and that are getting billions of views. And say, what are people liking about this? How can we do something similar? Go on Netflix. See what your favorite TV shows are. Figure out. Why do I like this? What is appealing about this?
The great thing about narrative-style is how evergreen they are!
Narrative-style content works amazingly because they are so evergreen!
That means they can be used in the long run forever.
Danielle’s experience shows that brands investing in a good production see a good ROI.
For example, Webflow has been running their comedic ad for a very long time and they're still getting excellent results from that! "They've been running the same ads forever cause they spent a lot of money on really highly produced ads, very comedic, did it really well. They've just been running the same ads and they've been just getting so much leverage out of that. They're getting a great return on that.”