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Purpose-Driven Filmmaking: What Does It Mean?

Purpose-driven conservation filmmaking uses storytelling as a catalyst for change. Engaging narratives have the ability to transport viewers into unfamiliar worlds, sparking empathy and a desire to protect the natural wonders depicted on screen

Purpose-Driven Filmmaking: What Does It Mean?

Video and filmmaking for causes like conservation is always undergoing change. It’s not that long ago when our minds swerved to think that a one-minute square-cropped video or vertical story short for Instagram were the only answers for video. Fortunately people have realized that that has become a crowded, noisy space hellbent on entertainment over purpose.

It’s foolish to think that our target audiences don’t desire something more meaningful.

In recent years a new approach has emerged that goes beyond simply short entertaining videos of the natural world or cute animals.

Purpose-driven conservation and nature filmmaking seeks to inspire change and make a tangible impact on the conservation efforts.

Before you take the leap and focus more on creating a purpose-driven videos or films, you’ll need your organization — and communications department — to be on board. These videos are definitely not TikTok fluff videos, Instagram shorts, or yet another simplistic “Donate today!” kind of nature video.

Defining Purpose-driven Filmmaking

When it comes to conservation and nature filmmaking, purpose-driven means more than just showcasing beautiful landscapes and fascinating wildlife. It goes beyond entertainment and delves into the realm of conservation advocacy.

Filmmakers in this field strive to capture the wonders of the natural world while also highlighting the pressing issues it faces, such as habitat destruction, species extinction, and climate change. By showcasing the beauty and fragility of nature, these filmmakers play a crucial role in promoting a deeper appreciation for the environment and the need to protect it.

Storytelling as a Catalyst for Conservation Action

Purpose-driven conservation filmmaking uses storytelling as a catalyst for change. Engaging narratives have the ability to transport viewers into unfamiliar worlds, sparking empathy and a desire to protect the natural wonders depicted on screen. By personalizing the struggles faced by the environment, these films empower individuals to become advocates.

Incorporating Scientific Knowledge in Conservation Filmmaking

A purpose-driven video is more of a deep dive into a subject. These are not 30-second videos. You’ll need to take viewers on a more intimate journey into a subject matter. Think of the What, Why, How, Where and When and you’ll have a headstart. Integrating scientific knowledge into purpose-driven conservation filmmaking helps ensure factual accuracy and credibility. By collaborating with experts and researchers, filmmakers can present scientific discoveries and conservation efforts in an engaging and digestible format. By blending storytelling with scientific information, these films enable viewers to grasp the importance of conservation and the need for scientific solutions to preserve habitats and species.

Impact Assessment: Measuring the Success of Purpose-driven Conservation Filmmaking

Determining the impact of purpose-driven conservation filmmaking is crucial for evaluating its effectiveness. One way to assess this is by evaluating the influence of such films on conservation outcomes. Did the film contribute to policy changes, public awareness, or increased support for conservation efforts? These are important questions to consider.

Another aspect to measure is audience engagement and behaviour change. Did the film inspire viewers to take action, support relevant organizations, or change their own habits? Tracking audience behavior helps gauge the film’s ability to drive tangible change and encourages filmmakers to continue creating impactful content.

Stand Out From The Crowd Of Social Video Noise

In a world where attention spans are short and videos slide to become more entertainment than education, purpose-driven storytelling becomes more important to stand out from the crowd of social video noise.  By harnessing the potential of purpose-driven filmmaking, we can create a future where conservation efforts are propelled forward by the power of storytelling and collective action.


Gregg McLachlan
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