Welcome to our 5 QUESTIONS series. These posts will feature interviews with clients and colleagues to get their perspective on video production, animation, and motion graphics as business and marketing tools. Our first installment in the series is with Executive Producer Brian James Egan of The Henry Ford in Dearborn, MI.

Tell us about your organization.

The Henry Ford is an internationally-recognized history destination that explores the American experience of innovation, resourcefulness and ingenuity that helped shape America. A national historic landmark with an unparalleled Archive of American Innovation, The Henry Ford is a force for sparking curiosity and inspiring tomorrow’s innovators. Nearly 1.8 million visitors annually experience its five attractions: Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation, Greenfield Village, The Ford Rouge Factory Tour, The Benson Ford Research Center and The Henry Ford Giant Screen Experience. A continually expanding array of content available online provides anytime, anywhere access. The Henry Ford is also home to Henry Ford Academy, a public charter high school which educates over 500 students a year on the institution’s campus. In 2014, The Henry Ford premiered its first-ever national television series, The Henry Ford’s Innovation Nation, showcasing present-day change-makers and The Henry Ford’s artifacts and unique visitor experiences. Hosted by news correspondent and humorist, Mo Rocca, this Emmy®-winning weekly half-hour show airs Saturday mornings on CBS. For more information please visit our website.

How does your organization utilize video?

The Henry Ford utilizes video to create thought-provoking, visually-appealing content that well represents all programming, products, initiatives and new acquisitions spearheaded by our organization.  The purpose is to bring to life The Henry Ford’s brand through video compositions to be shared on the museum floor, on all social channels, enthusiast channels, educational products, and marketing materials.

Why is it important for organizations like yours to use video as a medium?

Video is rapidly becoming the most effective medium to reach audiences, communicate messaging and brand, to inspire the viewer with content and story, and hopefully create a call to action.  It is another tool in our toolbox to fulfill our mission and vision.  With various learning styles, video is able to supplement the visual and auditory learner.  With various methods and techniques it is also a way to convey story and messaging with regards to accessibility needs and initiatives.

How has video content helped your organization?

Video has allowed The Henry Ford to provide access to our stories and collections on a much larger scale – international audiences.  With our massive digitization efforts, video has allowed us to provide deep content and inspirational stories that are perfect mission fit.  Additionally, it is a mechanism to share with our members, key stake holders and general audiences who we are, what we are doing and assert the relevancy to our  vision and purposes.  We are able to not only communicate story and messaging, but also pure functional aspects as logistics and instructional visuals of our work and the various offerings.  Promoting our special events, exhibits, and offerings (i.e. catered events, field trips, etc.) that support our organization’s sustainability.

What is the most important thing you consider when choosing a video production company to work with?

First and foremost, we want to work with video companies that are sensitive to our mission and vision as well as the unique aspects of historic structures, objects and guests experience.  We look for collaboration and those who view the work as a “partnership.”  Companies and indivisibles that are willing to work with us as we are a somewhat complex organization with many audiences, many objectives, and many initiatives with a great deal of weigh in from various departments.  We value a fair and solid project for a fair and reasonable rate.  Like many organizations, we have strong brand guidelines and messaging standards.  Companies and individuals who can be creative and stylistic, but utilize and leverage THF brand is extremely valuable.  We also value clear and consistent communications, especially when these ventures often delve into creative expression.


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