Archive for the 'Video' Category

Speak to Them in a Language That They Will Better Understand

Residential Architect magazine sent me an email today introducing a new video series, Value of Residential Architecture. Each video will feature an architect discussing his/her thoughts on why residential architecture is important and where residential architecture is headed in the future. If you subscribe to Residential Architect, you may have received the link in your inbox as well.

The description included with the email is as follows:

Residential Architect magazine introduces a new video series that explores the importance of residential design and the value architects bring to the housing industry. Throughout the year, we’ll talk with residential architects who are passionate about their profession, so please join us for the entire series and find out how the spaces we occupy in our everyday lives shape us as human beings and as a society.

I was excited. I thought this would be a great tool. I could send it to clients to help them better understand residential architects and the importance of working with an architect. I thought with the title, Value of Residential Architecture, it would be geared toward everyday people, showing them that architects are not only for the elite few, but for all. That EVERY house should be “architecture”. That when architects are involved, families are strengthened, lives improve, people are healthier and, in fact, happier.

The first video features acclaimed architect, Will Bruder, AIA.

Although I am in agreement with much, if not all, of what Mr. Bruder says, I will not be sharing this video with any of my clients. I do not fault Mr. Bruder or the publisher, but once again we are faced with an architect proclaiming the virtue of architecture and the beauty of proportioned space.  It is a video produced for consumption by architects and Mr. Bruder speaks in a language that only architects will understand. We love to speak about architecture in such poetic terms, but unfortunately it reinforces the notion that architecture is for the elite and that architects are only for people who seek art and poetry.

I understand the passion Mr. Bruder has for architecture. I feel it too. I understand the language in which he speaks… but most of my clients will not.

A recent discussion at the Entrepreneur Architect Linkedin Group has been about how the American Institute of Architects may better assist small firms. We are discussing the importance of communicating with the general public and educating them about the role of the architect. I understand that this video is not intended for the general public, or to educate them about the role of residential architects. It is what it is; a celebration of architecture for the viewing pleasure of other architects. It is though, a perfect example of what we are up against when attempting to shift the paradigm of the people.

Mr. Bruder designs beautiful houses; most certainly worthy of the term “poetic”, but if we are to ever position the residential architect as “important” and “necessary” in the eyes of the general public, we better speak to them in a language that they will better understand.

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How can we educate the general public about the importance of the residential architect? Do we celebrate the “art” and “poetry” of architecture too much? Do publications reinforce the false image that architects are only for the elite? What are your thoughts? I’d like to know.

BUILD LLC… the documentary

Check out the new short film documenting the life and times of the Seattle-based architecture firm, BUILD LLC. It is beautifully done.

A film like this can be used for so many purposes. First, it documents a specific time in the life of this specific firm. Andrew, Kevin and their team will have a great record of what they were thinking in the early days of BUILD LLC.

It is fantastic for marketing. How many firms have a well produced documentary film created for them? I would not be surprised when the online video goes viral. People love video and love to share.

It will help sales too. When prospects view the video, they quickly learn about the firm’s work and philosophy. They see and hear the partners talk about their love for what they do and the passion they have for being “architects that build”. When a prospect finally meets the partners to discuss their project, they will feel a sense of familiarity and comfort. They will have context.

What do you think about the film? Have you done anything similar? Have you seen other firms use video to spread the word?

Let’s talk.

Clients…by Michael Bierut of Pentagram

A blogging friend, Katie Hutchison, sent me a link to a recent talk by Michael Bierut, a partner at Pentagram. Part of the CreativeMornings lecture series organized by Tina Roth Eisenberg a.k.a @swissmiss, Michael discusses his take on clients; the good, the bad and the ugly.

Just under an hour long, it’s well worth a watch.

Thanks again Katie.

How to Stand Out

In the tradition of Seth Godin’s Purple Cow, Dan Heath, co-author of Made to Stick, has posted How to Stand Out in a Crowded Marketplace (video) to the AmEx OPEN Forum.

Are you doing something new that no one has seen before? Are you doing one thing ferociously? According to Heath, we need to be doing one or the other. If not, we’ll be lost in the vast sea of the marketplace. Being “better” is not good enough.

What are you doing to stand out in the marketplace of architectural services?

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Jonathan Segal, A Documentary Film

Created for the Mix 9 architecture show on exhibit at the Museum of Contemporary Art La Jolla, a documentary by Breadtruck Films about architect/developer Jonathan Segal FAIA and a new way to build sustainable cities.

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Back to School

Being a dad of two young boys, Sunday mornings are never available for watching TV. Pre-kids, one of my favorite programs was Small Business School on PBS. It currently airs in the New York City region on NJN, Sunday mornings at 7.

Lucky for me though, I can still get my weekly fix online at www.smallbusinessschool.org. They have thousands of videos available for download, all free of charge. Each one is a great story about a successful small business.

Looking for some motivation to help push your business past The Dip? Go to back to school.


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