5 Reasons Why Video is Essential for Your Business

Video is crucial for your content marketing plan and your online presence.

Whether it’s for information, entertainment, or both – video has taken over the internet. Cisco projects that video will account for 69% of consumer internet traffic in 2017, and that this number will continue to rise to 80% by 2019. Knowing video is the king of internet content, let’s break down a 5 reasons why it’s essential for your content marketing plan.


Focusing on search engine optimization (SEO) is a crucial part of every digital marketing strategy. According to Google, “SEO is the process of maximizing the number of visitors to a particular website by ensuring that the site appears high on the list of results returned by a search engine.” In an article published by Moz, search engines assume the more popular a site is, the more valuable the site’s information is. So, the more engaging your online content is, the more visitors will come to your site, resulting in your site ranking high in a Google result. Video is the best way to engage your site visitors because it immerses them and keeps their attention more than pictures and copy can.


Conversion rates, the percentage of users who take a desired action, grow exponentially whenever video is present, and these rates help your company’s SEO soar. Video can increase conversions by 30% and email click-through rates by 250%, according to Video Explainers. The more engaging the content, the more conversions! In fact, just using the word “video” in an email subject line boosts click-through rates by 65%. Try it out on your next eblast to see how well your rates are compared to past eblasts.


With today’s use of technology, having a consistent content-rich online presence is just as important as having a quality product or service. The accessibility and authenticity of videos helps strengthen that online presence. Consumers visiting your website want to know who you are so they can connect to your message. Including videos on your site, be that a “how to” video or an identity film showing off who you are, helps sell your product or service exponentially. At MAKE films, we created an identity film to showcase our culture and the people behind our service in an authentic and creative way. Each company has a message to communicate, and building your online presence through video is a great way to tell it.


It is no secret that video is taking over. With YouTube being the second largest search engine on the web, video dominates the social media world. According to Buffer Social, Facebook videos, on average, have 135% more organic reach than a Facebook photo. Social users WANT to watch an engaging video. They will stick around to watch one far more than they will for a picture with a long caption. TechCrunch found that on Facebook alone, 8 billion videos are watched every day. Visitors consider video more engaging because it requires less cognitive strain, which makes it the most effective method for reaching your target audience.


Millennials, more than any other generation, want to be emotionally connected to companies they buy from. Video can elicit emotions that other mediums simply cannot replicate. According to Simon Sinek in his TED talk, “Start With Why,” “People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.” Video allows you to easily communicate your “why” and connects your business with your viewers in an authentic way.

Engaging, shareable, and memorable – video is able to create a lasting impact for businesses across all communication platforms. Video is (and will remain to be) the king of content marketing. If you’re ready to create impactful video content for your business – give us a call, send an email, or stop by our studio to get started.


Benchmark Lights the Way for Memory Care Facilities

Through immense attention-to-detail and applying the latest in scientific research, Benchmark Construction built Brookside at Cross Keys Village.

Benchmark Construction, a construction company serving the healthcare, senior living, higher education, and commercial specialty markets, recently completed Brookside at Cross Keys Village, a state-of-the-art memory care center built with the architectural firm, SFCS.

Well-versed in video marketing, Benchmark’s VP of Market Growth and Innovation, Marcus Grimm, knew he wanted to tell the story of the memory care center in a focused and concise way, and enlisted MAKE films’ services to bring his vision to life through the creation of a case study video.

Instead of focusing heavily on Benchmark throughout the video, Grimm knew the story here was how all three partners; Cross Keys Village, Benchmark, and SFCS, came together to create a groundbreaking facility focused entirely on innovative memory care for those suffering from early to mid-stage dementia. Through the incorporation of the latest scientific research, Brookside at Cross Keys Village provides comfort, security, and continuous engagement for its residents, allowing them to age with dignity.

Watch the final product below.

Since completing the project, Benchmark uses the case study video at trade shows, for online marketing, and during marketing presentations. SFCS uses the video as well for marketing purposes.

We are very excited to continue working with the forward-thinking minds at Benchmark. Stay tuned for more to come in 2017!


Watching People Watch Sandwiches: Isaac’s TV Commercial

Isaac’s, a local restaurant chain in South Central Pennsylvania, is known for one thing: great sandwiches named after birds. According to Isaac’s website, one of the reasons they began naming their sandwiches after birds was because, “bird names were simply so much fun! People always would laugh when they ordered a Gooney Bird or a Tufted Titmouse or a Cockatoo.” Knowing this, when Isaac’s approached MAKE films last spring to produce a commercial that offered a fresh take on their brand, we knew we had to come up with a playful concept that made viewers laugh.


We believe research is key to creating an impactful commercial that resonates with the target audience. Because of this, we ventured to Isaac’s Downtown Lancaster location to taste-test a wide array of Isaac’s delicious sandwiches. (Side note: We recommend trying the Mallard – our personal favorite, which was featured in one of the commercials.)

After gathering our tasty research, we held a creative brainstorm. Knowing we wanted to highlight Isaac’s colorful restaurant and delectable sandwiches, all while sticking with their well-known bird theme that is foundational to their brand, we came up with the idea of birdwatching. Birdwatching an Isaac’s sandwich to be precise.

Some of our favorite clients to work with are trusting of our vision while also being collaborative throughout the process – and Isaac’s was just this. After presenting our idea for the commercial to Isaac’s, we worked together to fine-tune the concept, ending with a playful and creative way to showcase Isaac’s restaurant, their food, and birdwatching all at once.

In addition to research, creative brainstorms, and concept creation, MAKE handled script writing and the casting of actors and voice over talent for the commercial.


After viewing the final commercial intended for the web, Isaac’s immediately knew they wanted to increase the scope of the project and turn the web videos into TV commercials. To accommodate this change, MAKE created 30 second cuts of each video for Isaac’s to use in their TV spots. In addition to airing these commercials, Isaac’s shared the original web videos on social media.


Along with making Isaac’s happy, the videos were well received online. To date, the two web videos have received a combined total of over 136,000 views, over 900 reactions, and over 120 comments on Isaac’s Facebook page.

Watch the final product below.


MAKE films Welcomes Catlin Williams as Coordinating Producer

In late October, Catlin Williams joined the MAKE films team. Though numerous candidates were interviewed, Catlin really proved that she would fit in well with our team personally and had some great experience. In interviewing Catlin for this piece, I set out to discover specifically what it was that made her the perfect fit for MAKE. Though it was never a part of the interview process or her portfolio, I found the answer in her artwork.

Catlin holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Tyler School of Art. During her time there, she examined and deconstructed the widely held views of painting, photographs, and installation. She utilized painting techniques; such as blending, blurring, and layering; to create photographs. Her intrigue came in exploring the dynamic of painterly photographs and photo-realistic paintings. In the end, it was perspective that struck her.

Catlin explains, “When viewing artwork, it is imperative to be present to get a true sense of the artwork as an object in space… to experience the intentionality of it’s size, shape, its own presence. My practice explores the physicality of photographs and paintings… each two-dimensional mediums that elude to a three-dimensional space, and also focusing on their physical presence when installed in a viewing space.”

“I wanted to challenge the definitions of a ‘painting’ and a ‘photograph’, and test how each occupy the gallery space. Seeing artwork in person is so different than viewing an installation photo of the artwork. By playing with perspective and perception within the artwork itself, along with its installation, created a space the viewer must occupy to catch the idiosyncrasies.”

I think this conviction is one of the ways that Catlin will add to the MAKE team. Her ideas and creativity will add a level of depth to our videos, a medium which still remains challenged by the flatness of its screen, yet limitless in its conceptual possibilities.
Catlin spent her post-college years in the creative industry. She’s always gravitated toward various photography and video production opportunities in nearly every role; from photographing incoming artwork while interning at a fine art gallery, to leading photo and video production projects while at a full service marketing agency.

Catlin recounted one of her biggest career accomplishments while at Alpha Dog Advertising, Inside Lancaster; a publication created to highlight influential people who contribute to the entrepreneurial spirit that thrives in Lancaster She took a great idea and spearheaded its transformation into a meaningful project both for Alpha Dog and the Lancaster community.

“It was incredibly rewarding to use my creative direction and passion so freely to manage a magazine publication from start to finish, and an experience that I learned a tremendous amount from. To watch as locals and visitors alike responded positively to the publication and became engaged in the ideas within it was absolutely wonderful.”

At MAKE, Catlin will be contributing with ideation, film project logistics, resource management, and marketing. All of this, she seems to take on as a second nature. As a boutique film company, we tend to take on a variety of roles within our skill-set. Another perfect fit.

And Catlin appreciates film in a special way… a prerequisite for joining MAKE.

“It’s such a powerful medium, and if we can use it for greatness and for good… imagine the impact. ”

MAKE films crew

She says she appreciates the genuine, creative, and collaborative environment here, one that will truly benefit from her involvement.

So having strong and unique perspectives seems to be what binds us together here at MAKE. It’s what we all share and what we all combine to create great work. I asked Catlin what her three-month perspective was on the MAKE films’ offering:

“We’re a film production company that helps people identify their true story and how they can communicate it to their audience. We work with companies of all shapes and sizes in different industries. We have the client’s best interest in mind and seeking to understand their audience. We really care about communicating the best story… we want to make things that are influential, and we also want to be sure there’s a return, be it brand awareness, establishing emotional connections, or increasing engagement. ”

Well said, Catlin, and not everyone has the ability to do that. We’re glad you are here with us. Welcome to MAKE films.

Extraordinary Use of Video during the Extraordinary Give

Lancaster is an EXTRAORDINARY place.

Lancaster County is the most extraordinary, generous county!  We just raised over $7.1 million dollars last Friday during the 5th annual Extraordinary Give. This year was the biggest give yet! 45,478 people came together in the county to support over 400 non-profit organizations.

One of our clients, Attollo (also know as Children Deserve a Chance), had an incredible response this year.  Their organization received the most total gifts of 1,812 and the 2nd most donation total of $265,413.   They did a great job using the power of video to tell their story and to interact with the supporters.

How did video work for them?

The day of the Give: They used Facebook live to give updates throughout the day and keep their supporters engaged and involved.

Lead-up to the Give: We produced a short film for Attollo to share before the event to help generate awareness and excitement for their college access program and the amazing support of their organization – empowering the youth in the community.


Congratulations to Attollo and Children Deserve a Chance for all of the hard work you do to empower youth in their pursuit of academic achievement! Click here to learn more.



Delivering Crowdfunding to School Sports Arena with PLEDGE IT

This summer we were approached by tech start-up PLEDGE IT to produce a story that would launch their new crowdfunding innovation.

School sports programs need funding.

Whether it’s a new soccer goal, uniform subsidizing, or providing more growth and leadership opportunities for the players, it’s a simple fact that these programs need financial resources to keep moving forward and improving. In the past, sports teams have had a variety of fundraisers with buy out options. This might be a sandwich sale, some sort of gift card or coupon sale or various event-based fundraisers.

Empowering athletes with performance-based funding.

PLEDGE IT expands upon the per-mile fundraising model and combines that with rapid internet crowdfunding and shareability. The difference with PLEDGE IT is that patrons (parents, classmates, family, staff) are pledging a donation for the athletes’ performance. And that gives the student even more incentive to perform.

Changing the game – everyone wins.

We needed to tell a story that was relatable to those who are involved and invested in school sports. Challenge, overcoming adversity, failures and successes, and in the end, leaving with experience and pride in accomplishments. With this in mind, we felt is was best to approach this project with a flexible, nimble mindset to let the footage unfold naturally. We attended team practices and games to capture the excitement and dedication of athletes, team staff, and fans that drive the incentivized performance behind this fundraising platform.

The excitement of these games, the fans roaring, the heart of the players and the commitment to their team and goals – all combined with the donation-incentive of PLEDGE IT – is a win-win for everyone.

Helen Jane Long at MAKE films

MAKE films happily hosted Helen Jane Long and the London Players, featuring cellist extraordinaire, Dave Eggar, on November 11, 2016. It was an intimate setting, with sixty guests gathered around the baby grand piano in the center of the studio.

View a sneak peak of our short video from the sold out performance, and be sure to check back with us to see the film of the performance!

Helen Jane Long Preview

Photos from Performance

Helen J Long

Helen J. Long and the London Players


Helen J Long

Filming Helen J Long


Cellist David Eggar


Playlist for Helen J. Long

Fans with Helen J. Long

Fans with Helen J. Long

Karen and Helen J. Long

MAKE Crew with Helen J. Long

The Beauty Behind Canned & Frozen Produce

The Story of Preserved, Peak-Season Produce, Right from Our Backyard

How does deliciously fresh produce get to your table all year round? Was it mass-produced at a factory, or was it nurtured by the hands of farmers?

With a growing movement of small farming, Community Supported Agriculture (CSA’s), and other initiatives, you may wonder where the food on shelves and freezers comes from. Hanover Foods works with family farmers, real people, and local and regional fields for their food production.

In Spring of 2016, we produced a video about Hanover Foods’ packaging processes with a focus on freshness. Before we engaged in this project, we didn’t fully understand the comprehensiveness of the local sourcing, speed to package, and general quality assurance of this regional operation.

After completing this video, MAKE suggested that Hanover Foods’ take the story back one step further from the packaging processes. Before produce is canned or frozen at its peak freshness, it’s here… in the beautiful farmland of our region.

This new short story focuses on some of the local farm operations and growers that fill the freezers and pantries of many East Coast families.

The Farms of Hanover – Director’s Cut