Once upon a time, not many years ago, I was marketing manager for a major supplier of equipment to the aquaculture industry.
By: Rolf Mork-Knudsen. Partner in Nagelld
Things were going well. The company was expanding and starting to become a challenger both in Norway and internationally.
We had new owners (who turned out to be the beginning of the end, but that is another story) and there was a strong belief in the future.
The company was establishing a name for itself through its good products and excellent staff, as well as an enormous enthusiasm and market profile that caught people’s attention.
The flirting started quietly, as it often does.
As is the case for most companies in technical sectors and industries, visual images represented a challenge for us. It is difficult to take good pictures of aquaculture equipment while it is in use, and it is expensive to hire in professional photographers. It is demanding and often extortionately expensive to satisfactorily demonstrate methods, product benefits and innovation through images and video. And technical drawings can be difficult to understand for those outside the professional community (quite apart from the fact that drawings are often considered deadly boring).
But we kept trying, and we managed to produce okay to decent marketing to excellent material. And there was a continuous hunt for images and videos of one thing or another.
On one occasion we said yes to a brilliant offer of going by helicopter to film a new product being towed to a customer. The calculators of the people working out the cost of the filming went bananas. And I swore an oath that I would hide my business degree certificate at the bottom of a drawer. There were some disturbing scenes.
Was there really no better way of doing this? To get better pictures and illustrations, and control how our products are presented? A method that would also satisfy the cost controllers?
I walked away with a crooked back. At first, only my chiropractor was happy about this.
But after a while it started to improve.
The flirt with visualisation and animation had started.
It could have gone very wrong. I was keen on a company in Oslo and invited them to visit a fish farm; we were on a feeding barge, at the cages, on board a work boat.
I was a little worried when the apple of my eye started to use the terms right and left at sea, and ask how fast a boat can reverse. Things like that.
But the work they showed us… Wow..! They visualised the boats as films, showing us how you could get a film just as you wanted it, and make several versions of films using the same basic material. No need to be dependent on good weather and hope that the barge was tidy and looked respectable when we took our pictures (and not least avoid the annoying sound of a calculator that comes with helicopter rental).
Right and left. Reverse? Love is blind. It really is.
You have the peace, strength and future laid out in front of you.
And then another one comes along; one that knocks you off your feet, takes your breath away, and makes you forget the past.
One who laughs about using the terms right and left at sea. One who giggles about reversing a boat. One who understands technical drawings. One who can communicate. One who knows what is important and can recognise the essence. One who becomes enthusiastic and involved in what you are doing, and helps to show off your very best attributes, not just those that are good.
Yes. You guessed it. I met another visualisation company.
«Tell us what you are thinking, and we can make it», they said. And that is exactly the point.
We became an item.
The impossible possible
Aquaculture/ fisheries >>
Shipping/ maritime >>
Technical industry >>
The impossible possible >>