Making a Research Documentary

Formal research debriefs and detailed reports have their place.  However, using video can offer a more engaging way of presenting the findings. Working with market researchers, Irwin Video make films which not only bring consumers to life, but also have the power to convey important messages to its audience more quickly and effectively.

We have recently produced a research documentary with GfK Kynetec, who were asked by one of their clients to produce a film depicting ‘a day in the life of’ a professional pest manager (PPM). The research was conducted with PPM’s in the USA.

Our two-man crew of Andrew and Matty flew out to the US to film 11 interviews across two weeks in New Jersey, Georgia and North Carolina. The filming of each respondent was in two parts: The first part was a sit down interview, conducted by Damon, the Research Director from GfK Kynetec. The second part of the filming involved following the respondent around their workplace or going about their duty in clients’ homes.

'A day in the life' research documentary

For the interview part, the video crew used a portable lighting kit to nicely illuminate the respondent, and set up a fixed boom microphone for good quality audio pick up. Andrew filmed the interviews with a Canon C100 cinema camera. Once the interview was under way, Matty left Andrew to it and used a Canon 5D DSLR camera on a portable rig to film B-Roll shots around the respondent’s office or workshop.

At the end of each filming day, Andrew transferred the interview recordings to an MPEG-4 proxy file: This is a compressed recording with on-screen rolling time-code; it is an easy-to-view file which Damon could take away on a USB pen drive.

Once filming was complete we set about editing the research documentary. Referencing the on-screen time-code information, Damon could easily identify the clips that he wished to consider for inclusion in the final film. Our video editor expertly combined the interview clips with selected B-Roll footage and added music and titles to compliment the film.

We uploaded the draft versions of the film to our secure file sharing server for Damon to download and watch. On the first viewing of the research documentary Damon sent us an email exclaiming “Wow – this looks great!  Really, really impressive stuff.”


Live Video-Link from a Moving Vehicle

For our qualitative researcher friends in the world of automotive research, you might be interested to know that we have some new equipment that allows us to provide a live video link from a moving vehicle. For car research projects with drive test evaluation, researchers and clients can sit comfortably in a central location viewing room, or indeed at their home/office, to watch the research unfold as it happens. We have successfully demonstrated the live video link at a car clinic event held in London, conducted by market research company MM-Eye.

The YouTube link below provides a demonstration of the equipment installation and a sample of the received transmission.

The transmitter uses multiple 3G & 4G mobile signals across all the cellular networks to send the high quality video stream. This means we can stream from anywhere that has sufficient mobile coverage.

Automotive Research Filming Services provided by Irwin Video

Irwin Video have been providing automotive research filming and AV services since 2005. We have worked on many car clinic events held in the UK, as well as Europe, China and the USA.  We supply the camera equipment and crews to film focus groups and we set up video links so clients can watch the groups from a viewing room.

In most cases, filming focus groups discussing cars involves following the respondents in and around prototype and reference vehicles, so we need to supply cameras with mobile capability. To do this safely and securely, we fit a HD video transmitter to our camera which sends an encrypted wireless video signal to the viewing room. We also fit radio microphones to the respondents to achieve high quality audio pick-up.

Clients and researchers in the viewing room watch the discussion groups on a large screen and listen using digital wireless headphones. In addition to recording focus groups and providing an AV relay, Irwin Video also provide the following:

  • Simultaneous interpretation equipment for projects requiring a translator
  • Video clip editing
  • Ethnographic interview filming
  • Live video web-streaming
  • In-car cameras for drive test evaluation
  • Full HD video projection to display ‘full size’ vehicles on a large projector screen
  • LCD / Plasma / LED TVs to display stimulus
  • High-spec laptops
  • MP3 recorders

Filming a Client Case Study Video

Using a Client Case Study Video as a Promotional Film:

Irwin Video has recently completed a promotional video for Cheshire based company Core RFID.  It features a case study of Industrial Chemicals Limited, explaining how Core RFID’s asset tracking solutions have significantly improved the tracking and maintenance plans of ICL’s 3000 intermediate bulk containers, which they transport to different sites around the UK.

Filming included a day at an ICL site in Selby. Following a safety briefing, our crew first filmed an interview with Darren Sharpe, ICL’s Energy Project Manager. Then, dressed in hi-vis jackets, safety helmets and steel toe-capped boots, the crew had a great time filming ICL workers around the site. This included some time-lapse filming and attaching cameras to a fork lift truck to capture dynamic shots of the bulk containers being moved around. We also had a camera operator filming inside the cab of an HGV and filmed the truck on the roads around Selby.

On a second filming day, we spent some time filming at Core RFID’s offices in Warrington. This included filming an interview with Core RFID’s Technical Sales Director, Richard Harrison, who explained more in detail the service and equipment that they supplied to ICL.

The benefits of a Client Case Study Video

This professionally produced client case study video works as an effective promotional tool for Core RFID, as the video endorsement from one of its customers offers a powerful message to potential new clients. It also benefits ICL, as they too can use the video to show their customers how they use technology to keep track of the whereabouts, maintenance and life span of the containers that they are sending out.

After watching the final cut of the video, Richard Harrison stated “We are all really pleased – it looks excellent. Thanks for all your hard work.”


Translation Equipment for Research Projects

In addition to our usual filming for research services, Irwin Video also provide translation equipment, including interpreters consoles and multi-channel delegate headsets.  A recent car-clinic event in France gave us a chance to unveil our new simultaneous interpretation console, which will only enhance our reputation for providing interpreters with good quality sound.

Whilst the majority of our research filming services are for projects in the UK, we have worked on many overseas projects requiring simultaneous interpretation, in countries including France, Italy, Germany, Spain, Sweden, Turkey and China.  Occasionally, research projects in the UK also require translation equipment when respondents are flown in from abroad, or when clients from overseas would like to listen to simultaneous interpretation of the focus groups in their native language.

Irwin Video provide professional grade microphones, William Sound IC-2 Interpreters Consoles and William Sound Digiwave wireless headsets. The Digiwave system can accommodate up to 14 channels of audio. Using our wireless digital audio headsets, clients and researchers watching in the viewing room can choose to listen to the live sound in the local language or alternatively listen to the simultaneous interpretation.

Whether you require translation equipment for a research project or simultaneous interpretation equipment for any other type of event, please do not hesitate to contact us if you require any further information or a quotation.



Another Consumer Insight Film Produced

Qualitative research specialists Stratosphere recently commissioned Irwin Video to create a consumer insight film for a leading UK home and garden accessories supplier. The research involved video recording in-home and in-store one-on-one interviews over three days in the North-West of England, and the footage was edited into a highly engaging 15-minute film. Remarking on the completed film, Steve Williams of Stratosphere said, “I think this is absolutely brilliant. I am really chuffed with how this has turned out. Based on this, I plan to offer filming as often as possible on future jobs!”

Qualitative research specialists Stratosphere recently commissioned Irwin Video to create a consumer insight film for a leading UK home and garden accessories supplier. The research involved video recording in-home and in-store one-on-one interviews over three days in the North-West of England, and the footage was edited into a highly engaging 15-minute film. Remarking on the completed film, Steve Williams of Stratosphere said, “I think this is absolutely brilliant. I am really chuffed with how this has turned out. Based on this, I plan to offer filming as often as possible on future jobs!” Irwin Video have completed many consumer insight films and have streamlined the film-making process:

  1. At the end of each filming day, we hand over a USB pen drive to the researcher, which contains a “proxy” copy of all the interview recordings. These files are highly compressed to make the file sizes manageable and can be played in any media player, including Windows, QuickTime or VLC. The files also have time-code “burnt” into the video – a rolling clock on-screen making it easy for the researcher to reference the recordings.
  2. The researcher selects the clips they would like to use by entering the in-point and out-point time-codes of each comment into an Excel spreadsheet (template provided by us.)
  3. Editing with the original high definition video recordings, we use the Excel clipping list to create the required clips and then we upload them to our secure server. The researcher can download the clips and select which ones they would like in the final edit.
  4. We sequence the clips, adding text, graphics and creativity as required, to produce a draft edit of the film.  Once again, the film is made available as a download to our clients so they can quickly offer feedback and request ‘tweaks’ before the final version is encoded in a high quality video format.

Professional Video Production

Video, if done well, has the power to boost customer engagement and undoubtedly help to convert sales. It is now well known that search engines love video, so adding video content to your web site will also help increase web traffic.

Irwin Video provide high-quality, good value video production. We make creative corporate films that will not only provide engaging content for your website or trade stand, but will also present your company with the professional image it deserves. We take care of the scripting, filming, editing and final delivery of your video, to produce a  video which will create a great impression to your customers or clients.

The types of videos that we produce include:

  • Promotional Video / Corporate Film
  • Training Video
  • Product Demonstration Video
  • CEO Presentations
  • Consumer Insight Films

We can also produce foreign language versions of your film, using subtitles or foreign voice-over artists, helping you to reach out to customers in overseas markets.


Multi-Camera Conference Filming

Every April, Irwin Video head up to the Winter Gardens in Blackpool to film Usdaw’s biggest conference in its calendar. The UK’s fourth largest trade union hold their Annual Delegate Meeting, and we’re there to film the four day event in its entirety.

Working with T5 Event Media we set-up and operate a multi-camera system with HD vision mixing. Our equipment includes a wireless HD video transmitter and wireless talkback system, which enables us to utilise a mobile camera on the conference floor without the danger of running cables. The output from our vision mixer feeds two large-venue HD projectors as well as several plasma screens around the Winter Gardens.

We make HD recordings of the entire event and we also provide a video editor on-site who, equipped with a portable edit suite, cuts together a highlights film which is played to the conference audience on the last day. We also create compressed MPEG4 video files on-site which provide Usdaw with a comprehensive video archive of all debates and guest speakers.