By now, you’ve likely seen the “This is a Generic Brand Video” video that has been going around, the one from stock video footage company Dissolve humorously mocking generic marketing videos. Based originally on a written piece by Kendra Eash, the video highlights the importance of staying away from generic, cookie-cutter approaches in our marketing efforts.
Using their own stock footage, Dissolve produced narration and compiled video to match Kendra’s written piece. On their website they write, “The minute we saw Kendra Eash’s brilliant ‘This Is a Generic Brand Video’ on McSweeney’s, we knew it was our moral imperative to make that generic brand video so. No surprise, we had all the footage.”
The video has received over 1 million YouTube views. I would encourage you to watch it now if you haven’t seen it. Here’s an excerpt that embodies the sentiment of the piece:
“Lest you think we’re a faceless entity,
Look at all these attractive people.
Here’s some of them talking and laughing
And close-ups of hands passing canned goods to each other
In a setting that evokes community service.
Are all words we chose from a list.”
This is a topic we discuss often here at News Generation – not being cookie cutter in our approach to the media relations work we do. While there are certainly some elements that remain relatively similar project to project, we take each project with an individual focus and approach. For example, in producing a radio media tour, we frequently have the spokesperson available for interviews for roughly three hours during morning drive, but we know each and every one of our clients are different, so their news should be treated individually.
Loyal clients are something we all have to put in the work to earn and maintain. We can’t just throw generic material at them and expect them to do all the work determining how our services could be an asset to the work they’re doing. In the words of Eash, we must ensure we’re not just a “faceless entity.”