A Coca-Cola Valentine Video & Why It Pays To Keep Clients Informed
A few weeks ago, I completed one of my biggest assignments ever: a Valentine video for Coca-Cola Journey, which serves as the company’s brand newsroom and social media hub. It was posted on the Journey site, and also uploaded to the company’s YouTube Channel. Here it is:
I created the video on Kizoa, an online platform for creating slideshows and videos. I’m a subscriber. My Pro membership allows me to create videos in full HD (high-definition), and download them onto my computer in MP4 format.
I can adjust the display interval for each individual slide; i.e., how long that particular slide is visible “on screen.” The final slide in the video displays for a full 5 seconds. Some of the slides in the action sequences (e.g., the cliff dive) only display for 0.2 seconds.
Being a subscriber also gives me access to all the tracks in Kizoa’s music library, most of which are royalty-free for both personal and commercial use. That’s a very important point, since it means that neither I nor my clients have to worry about copyright issues,
or paying music royalties.
The rest was pure experimentation: adjusting the timing, deciding what music to use for the different sequences, etc. I lost track of all my trial runs. Suffice it to say, a video isn’t something you get right on your first try– not in my case, anyway… 😕
Coca-Cola wants its products to look as accurate as possible, so I extract what I need from photos. I use filters and color adjustments to enhance the images. Once I’ve extracted an item, I can paste it onto any background.
In actual fact, the bottle doesn’t rotate at all. To create the illusion, I switched from two feet facing front, to a single foot facing left– that was easy enough. But the “Coca-Cola” text on the bottle had to appear to rotate, too. Why was that a challenge?
Because the text and the bottle were part of a single image. If I selected the text and removed it– cut it out of the bottle, so to speak– I’d leave a physical hole in the green glass. I needed to lift off the “Coca-Cola” so I could rotate it, while somehow creating green glass where the text used to be.
Here’s the basic sequence. I selected the “Cola” (below, highlighted in black for visibility), copied it, and saved it on a separate layer. (I didn’t need the “Coca,” because that part of the text would be invisible after the rotation.)
Then I used Pixelmator’s rather remarkable Repair tool to select what I wanted to get rid of. The Repair tool replaces the selection by cloning the pixels in the immediate vicinity. Below, the third bottle from the left shows the result after I used the Repair tool to select the top half of the “Coca-Cola.” After selecting the bottom half, I got the result shown in the fourth bottle. Digital magic indeed.
It’s important for me to say this first: keeping clients informed isn’t just a nice thing to do. It’s a must-do. It’s a professional obligation. To surprise a client with finished work that doesn’t match their expectations is to invite disaster. Not only have you wasted time and effort, you’ve hurt your reputation.
Jay Moye is the editor of Coca-Cola Journey. He gave me the assignment. I was on a tight deadline and sent Jay a status report every day.
That one sentence determined the entire look of the video. I read it and had an immediate revelation: We were doing a video about a Coke bottle that comes to life and embarks on a journey. The idea was fantastic, surreal– why shouldn’t the landscape look the same way?? I saw the whole thing in an instant, and immediately revised the desert color scheme.
One other point worth noting: it pays to be proactive. The video was my own idea. I pitched the idea to Jay by sending him a B&W rough cut.
Do you use video as part of your social media strategy?
Have you ever found a bottle with a message in it?
Have you ever seen a pink cactus? How about a pink elephant??
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