Show us your Best Cinematography!

Last week, nominations were announced for the Academy Awards.  Cinematography is one those “artistic” categories that many overlook, but it’s a lot like marketing.  How?  Let’s look beyond the standard technical definition of “lighting and camera choices.”  What makes a movie memorable?  Yes, a strong story and compelling performances are essential – but what about the feelings, the memories, a good movie promotes?  More often than not, this can be traced back to its cinematography – such examples include “Titanic,” or more recently, “War Horse”.  What do you see?  What do you feel?

The cinematographer is responsible for the technical aspects of creating the images, but works closely with the director to ensure artistic aesthetics are supporting the director’s vision of the film.  Starting to see how this relates to marketing?  Let’s look at how your team works . . .

  • Do your marketing efforts support the organization’s overall vision?
  • How do your campaigns support the visual identity of your brand?
  • What kind of emotional experience are you associating with your brand?

Just as the cinematographer creates a “mood” or “experience” for the director to convey to the movie audience, so too does the marketing function bring to life for consumers the brand as articulated by the hospital’s vision.  

For example, the goal of one mid-Atlantic hospital is to be “the world’s preeminent health care institution.”  As a patient there, I have seen this demonstrated first hand.  The campus is like a small city – clearly a world-wide destination. There are signs everywhere in at least 8 different languages.  Other signs reassure me I’ve made a smart decision because I’m visiting the nation’s “number one hospital” (eight years in a row, according to US News, as they helpfully note).  Additional wall hangings are prominently displayed reminding hospital staff to be deferential to patients and remain vigilant with hand-washing.   I have to tell you, it works.  I’m thinking to myself, “ I’m so clever for picking this hospital for my care.  And I feel safe while I’m here.”

So, how are you like the cinematographer for your hospital?  How do you create the “artistic aesthetics” to deliver your institution’s brand promise? 


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2 responses to “Show us your Best Cinematography!

  1. Clever way to look at this, Susan and valuable insight on creating customer loyalty. It isn’t just the medical expertise (the acting) – the cinematography matters. Having recently placed my mother in a long-term care facility I’ve learned this one well. The cinematography of Beth Sholom Village shines brightly and celebrates life in a beautiful and respectfully designed setting. Upon walking into the main lobby I am greeted immediately by happily chirping finches living in a beautiful habitat. They are my initial happy “greeting” as I enter the building. As I wander down the hall, I’m acknowledged by pleasantly by all staff with whom I come into contact – regardless of position or job. Once in a while, I meet up with the resident “therapy” dog – an adorable Labradoodle. There’s frequently a player baby grand piano playing swing music lending an upbeat “attitude”. As I enter the unit where my mother now resides, the staff greet me with a happy hello – even when they are heads down in work. I feel embraced by it and reassured that my mother is in a “good place”. I wouldn’t have her live anywhere else in Hampton Roads. That’s great cinematography.

  2. Allison Sherwat Cooper

    Michele’s insights on her interactions with a long term care facility brings up an interesting issue that while we should strive for a cohesive brand experience across all facilties, marketers need to be sensitive that what patients and families might be looking for in an inpatient setting for acute care is not necessarily the same attributes and experience as what is needed and desired in a long term care environment. That subtlety is important.

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