In 2003, I began to produce videos for business.
'Corporate videos' as they were called then and frequently still are, had earned a reputation for mind-numbing dullness at a high price.
But around 2003, advances in camera technology and computers brought the cost of entry right down, allowing a new generation of film-makers - like me - to throw their hats into the ring.
My ambition was simple: to bring higher production values to corporate video at a lower price.
These values had a lot to do with TV commercials (of which I have so far written or directed well over 100) because - if there is one thing that advertising teaches you - it's that the audience never owes you their attention.
You have to earn it from the opening seconds and hold it until the end.
Only with a corporate video, you have to hold it for longer.
I called this new enterprise Wide Angle and you can judge for yourself the quality of the work we produce for a wide range of clients by visiting www.wideangle.co.uk.
Good copywriters are getting scarce.
Persuasive, compelling, commercial writing is fast becoming a dying trade.
Yet there has never been more demand for well-crafted text - particularly for the internet - where words account for a large proportion of most business websites.
And many organisations - bless - still think a good brochure takes a lot of beating.
My (very short) start in newspapers and far longer career in advertising as an award-winning copywriter and creative director, has taught me to make every word count.
To write in a way that makes the reader want to read on. To make even technical subjects easy to understand and rewarding to read about.
My earliest lessons came from a sub-editor on the New Jersey newspaper where I cut my teeth:
'Simple reading makes hard writing', he would say and 'Never use one big word where three little ones will do.'
That's about all the advice any writer needs.
The rest is just practice.
Any enterprise that isn't founded on a true idea is like a ship without a rudder. It may chance upon a friendly shore, but it's more likely to be driven onto the rocks.
Good ideas generate their own energy. They provide a clear sense of direction and inspire everyone involved.
I'm an ideas person.
In a long career in advertising, I have advised some of the world's largest companies and many smaller ones.
And while - on the face of it - these conversations were about advertising, the subtext was always their business strategy. Because no amount of advertising can paper over a weak strategy or a flawed product.
So I've had a hand in many successes - and a few turkeys.
The successes, because they were already founded on strong ideas, just needed that little extra momentum. The turkeys were usually too late for anyone to save.
Experience has taught me that strategy is everything - and I've grown good at helping clients develop theirs.
So if you need marketing counsel with the creativity to bring it alive, talk to me.
> Communications Audit
> Strategy Development
> Proposition refinement
> Brand name development
VIDEO PRODUCTION SERVICES
> Corporate video production
> Training Videos & presentations
> Media training
> For internet, presentations, .pdf
> For brochures, leaflets
> For print ads & posters
> For TV commercials