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The Simplicity of Effective Video

Effective videos can be simple.


As a graduate of Oklahoma City University (OCU), I stay fairly involved with the alumni association in NYC, OCUNYC. The video below popped into my inbox at a moment that I was actually available to watch it. I had no idea there was processing to be done...


Here’s some background: there’s a pandemic going on, in case you hadn’t heard. The many musical theatre and opera graduates of OCU are entering an almost non-existent job market. They did not get to do their NYC showcase for agents, and they did not even get to walk across the stage for graduation.


At the university’s live-streamed graduation ceremony, someone hacked into the system and displayed derogatory and racist words and images, cancelling the rest of the virtual ceremony. I felt for these new grads; I felt for our society.


President Martha Burger sent this video a few short days later, and although the beginning is slow, it is brilliantly done for a few reasons.


  1. Most of the video is made of images collected throughout the year which cuts down on fancy sound and video editing that can slow production down.

  2. At a time when people needed an outlet, President Burger asked students to contribute their own talent.

  3. In doing so, she invited all of those people, their friends and families to watch the video all the way through.

  4. She uses the power of music to connect with the audience.

  5. She authentically captures the two juxtaposed moods of the 2019-2020 school year--the promise, hope, and joy of starting a new year, and the tragic pause and adjustment of the pandemic and loss of graduation. She does not apologize for this switch.

I share this video only because it had an impact on me and reminded me of the power of involving your audience in your stories and using art to engage emotions.



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(c) 2020 Stephanie J Ramos