What Can Production Companies Learn From Nonprofits?


Smart business owners are always on the lookout for sources of inspiration, and that certainly goes for the owners of production companies. After all, it’s usually a love of the arts that pushes someone down that road. They have their creative instincts nurtured by idols of stage and screen, and seek to emulate those idols as they build their careers. That willingness to see what others are doing and learn from it never goes away.

That said, it’s easy to let your attention linger on companies like yours: those with similar motives, habits, and creative approaches. And while that clearly makes their methods easier to adopt, it also allows you to overlook other organizations that could be sources of valuable insight. Take non-profits, for example. Pursuing different goals, they can be useful examples.

In this post, we’re going to consider what production companies can learn from non-profits. This should help you identify some shortcomings in your business and implement some meaningful improvements. Enough preamble, then — let’s get started.

You can help people and make enough money

The term non-profit can cause some confusion. People know it refers to organizations that don’t have profit as an objective, but they can assume that it guarantees financial struggle. This isn’t actually the case. Some non-profits only run on tight budgets because they give away anything they don’t directly need. They cover their core goals, fund their daily activities, then have no compelling reason to keep or spend further resources.

The lesson to learn from this, as noted, is that it’s perfectly possible to pursue some noble goals while still making money. You can also take inspiration from the various businesses out there that do just that. Take a company like VA Claim Pros, for instance: its focus is on helping veterans get the disability benefits they deserve, but it’s also a business with profit goals. So if your company doesn’t have any altruistic goals, why not add some?

Strong teamwork is profoundly powerful

One of the things that makes charities work so reliably is that the people working for them truly believe in the power of collaborative effort. They have shared goals, and they’re determined to work extremely hard to avoid disappointing one another. In these times of remote working and extended separation, it’s vital to remember how much teamwork makes a difference.

This means doing more than just investing in equipment and training. You should also invest in team exercises, social activities (whenever safe, of course), and shared ideation to help steer the company in a direction that everyone is happy with. Work to build a superb team, and it’ll pay off in the quality of work you produce in the coming years.

Every business needs an attention-grabbing story

By Stevie Nicks, Digital Editor, Just Another Magazine 

There are so many charitable organizations out there, and they don’t generally have enough money to invest in widespread marketing efforts — so how do they get noticed? Well, they make the most of the promotion they can do, and the first step towards that is advancing their brand stories. How did they form? Why do they care? What do they want to achieve?

A small charity that has a particularly-captivating backstory can quickly attract attention, being written and talked about throughout the world. Similarly, a production company that can tell a compelling brand narrative can give people a reason to give it a chance. So what’s notable about your company in particular? What’s different about your origin story? The more you can come up with, the more you can get people to root for you. I suggest taking a look at the story behind WE Charity: it’s a great example of what I’m talking about.

Tapping into emotion is key for connection

Lastly, something that all nonprofits know keenly is the power of emotion in all forms of media. If you can’t make a view feel something, then you can’t really make your point (or points) connect with them. You can’t win them over to your side or convince them to act. But if you can manage to tug on their heartstrings or do something comparably affecting, they’ll be very suggestible.

It’s perfectly possible for production companies to get a little too focused on image sharpness and production quality, and that’s understandable — but even the best production standards in the world won’t make a boring ad effective. The script for each video needs just as much work as any other element — and if you want to really catch the eye, emotion is your biggest weapon.

Wrapping up, production companies can learn a lot from nonprofits. Nonprofits are able to help people while covering their costs, maintain incredibly-effective teams, tell stories that win them supporters, and play on your emotions with expert precision. Keep this in mind as you develop your business. You’ll be glad you did.


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