Service Availability During The COVID-19 Crisis

5th May 2020 No comments
Business As Unusual During The Coronavirus Pandemic

Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, we’ve been actively thinking about how our business will continue to operate, both now and in the future. One thing is for certain; How we operate now will be different to how we’ve operated in the past. Although in our case, we don’t think it will be a dramatic change.

With many companies now working remotely using digital tools, business leaders are realising that video is a powerful tool for sharing company updates, product information, educational resources and other messages without also sharing the coronavirus. (And without the cost of travelling – both financially and environmentally.)

Over the past few weeks we’ve been fielding enquiries about using video in the “new normal”. We’ve been asked about using 360° VR video to provide virtual tours of various facilities, live streaming for broadcasting sales presentations and for remote monitoring of construction projects, and using plain ol’ normal video to create product training videos and jazzy promotional videos in lieu of in-person demonstrations.

A lot of these enquires have been prefaced with asking whether we’re able to help during the current situation. The answer is “Yes”, albeit with a few extra considerations to ensure that everyone involved can stay safe and reduce every possibility of spreading the virus.

To offer some clarity, here’s an overview of what we’re currently able to offer while the UK is on lockdown.

Southpoint Films Studio Southampton

Filming

As the only service we offer that typically requires two or more people to be in the same room at the same time, filming is one of the more challenging services for us to provide right now.

However, I’m pleased to say that we’ve got procedures in place to ensure the safety of our customers and our team for almost every type of filming project.

Download our COVID-19 Risk Assessment

Take a look at the risks we assess when carrying out filming during the coronavirus pandemic. You can download our COVID-19 Risk Assessment in PDF and Apple Numbers formats below.

Download as PDF • Download as Numbers

Location Filming

Last month I carried out my first location shoot post-lockdown, which was for one of our existing clients at a school in London. I detailed the full process in a separate post and on an episode of our new podcast “Are We Rolling?”. With careful planning, the use of PPE and – most importantly – adherence to social distancing, we were successful in carrying out our work without spreading the virus.

Ahead of any location shoot, we now carry out a COVID-19 specific risk assessment that looks at things like the travel arrangements, ability to maintain social distancing, and also whether or not the location has been closed due to a known COVID-19 infection. If the project passes our risk assessment, we’re happy to proceed.

If you’re looking for a video to be filmed at your location, please get in touch.

Studio Filming

Our studio in Southampton is one of our best assets. As anybody who’s visited will know, it’s an ideal space for recording content such as promotional videos, piece to cameras and educational courses. We’re delighted that we’re able to keep it open during this time.

Located in a small office building with very low footfall, the flexibility of our studio enables us to carry out the vast majority of tasks while maintaining social distancing.

For starters, the studio can be set up prior to a customer’s arrival, and can be packed down once they’ve left. While a member of our team will need to enter the room to configure the lighting and camera position at the start of the session (and we can do that while wearing a mask), most filming can be carried out with the operator monitoring the camera remotely from a nearby room, creating a physical barrier between us and the person delivering a piece to camera.

Additionally, we have hand washing facilities and plenty of cleaning supplies. We’ve even purchased disposable cups so that we can provide water without any risk of cross-contamination from reusable cups. We’re very well geared up for safe, contact free, socially distanced studio shoots.

Like with location filming, we will be carrying out a COVID-19 risk assessment ahead of any studio shoots, and will proceed with any shoots that pass the assessment.

If you’re looking for a video to be filmed at our studio, please get in touch.

Event Filming

For obvious reasons, we’re not getting a lot of enquiries about filming events at the moment, and sadly we’re expecting that to be the case for some time to come.

Our hearts are with our friends in the events industry who’ve been severely impacted by COVID-19. We’re feeling it too. The only thing I can say is that the market is still there. Events haven’t paused due to lack of demand, and I would expect the events industry to boom once it’s safe for mass gatherings to return. Everybody who’s missed out on events this year will be craving those experiences once it’s safe to have them again.

While it’s not possible to film events that aren’t happening, it’s worth noting that we can work with event organisers to bring their events online using live streaming. For events that focus around knowledge sharing in particular, live streaming is an excellent substitute for in-person gatherings.

As outlined previously, we can broadcast on location or from our studio, so long as each project passes our COVID-19 risk assessment.

Additionally and alternatively, we can also help with live streaming on a purely technical level. For example, we can host digital conferences using feeds from multiple contributors’ webcams using services like Skype. In this scenario, speakers “dial in” and we rebroadcast each speaker in sequence through one stream for viewers to watch.

We can also help with creating “relay” streams, where we take content that’s been pre-recorded and play it out at a specific time. This can be a lower risk, less error-prone approach to live streaming.

With the technology available to us, the possibilities are endless, and our experience with live streaming spans many years. Our first commercial live stream was in 2014, and we’ve worked on many since. Whether you’re looking to host a virtual conference or simply want to broadcast a sales presentation professionally, we can help. The quality of a proper live stream is vastly superior to using a teleconferencing service, with no lag, video stuttering, or unwanted interruptions from callers.

If you’re looking for a live streaming solution for your virtual event, please get in touch.

1906 Edit Suite Opening 4

Editing, Animation & Post-Production

For customers interested in our editing, animation and other post-production services, you’ll pleased to know that COVID-19 has not impacted this part of our business.

Although our team are working from home, we have full access to our entire library of customer video content – and by “full” we mean everything from when we first opened our doors in 2013 until now.

Add New Life To Archive Footage

If you’re in need of some new content and we’ve filmed videos for you in the past, we can help. We can utilise archive footage, on-screen text and voice-over to create new videos that fit your requirements. We can also source high quality stock footage too, if needed.

Alternatively, if you have your own footage that you’ve been collecting over the years but have never edited into shareable content, now could be the perfect time to get some help.

Simply send us your footage via Dropbox, WeTransfer or a similar cloud storage service (we can help with this, if needed) and we’ll edit it into a video that not only you’ll be proud of, but a video that we will be proud of too.

Share New Ideas With Animation

Additionally, we have excellent capacity for animated projects at the moment, which can be produced entirely by our team without any existing content. Combined with a voice-over or on-screen text, an animation is a brilliant way of getting a message across without requiring any filming.

If you’re looking for animation or video editing services, please get in touch.

A “DIY video” made by Karen at Europump (Eurotank) with guidance from our team. It was shared to Karen’s LinkedIn profile.

Remote Coaching For DIY Videos

Finally, as a new service offering, we’re able to offer remote coaching for creating DIY videos for social media.

This service follows in the same vein as our recent and popular video, “How To Create Better DIY Videos Using Your Smartphone Or Webcam”, and we’ve already seen great success providing this service to several of our clients.

Who Is This Service For?

This service is designed for first-time DIY video makers, particularly those who aren’t feeling too confident on camera. Our team will coach you over Zoom, Skype or a video chat service of your choice to help you film short video clips for social media using your smartphone or webcam.

As part of the service, we’ll help you find the right angle for your shot using the resources you have available to you, we’ll help you with making sure you look and sound right, and we’ll give you coaching on your delivery to make sure your message comes across clearly.

Recording a video like this may seem a bit daunting for some, but we promise to make it as easy and as comfortable as possible. Our years of experience interviewing people in corporate environments means that we’re very much used to working with people who are appearing on camera for the first time. We’re not demanding, and ultimately we want you to succeed. (Which means that we’ll be trying our hardest not to stress you out!)

It’s About Making Your Videos Better

If there’s time or budget available, we can also do some light editing on the clips too. For example, we can give them a bit more pop, or add subtitles. For less tech-savvy customers, we can also help with uploading the videos to your social media profiles. (So long as you’re comfortable sharing your credentials with us.)

Prices for this service start at £75 + VAT. Bulk discounts available. Please contact us for more information.


About Our Coronavirus Response

Given the circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic, there’s every chance that the information in this post may change. We’ll do our best to keep it up to date with our current service offerings.

In the meantime, we hope you stay safe, and we look forward to working with you on your next video project.

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