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Where is the Montage style podcast?

Podcasts have really grown in popularity in recent years. The beginning of this trend can perhaps be traced to the American investigative journalism podcast Serial which broke download records on its release in 2014. All of a sudden people outside of radio and audio were talking about podcasts again.

One thing that almost all the podcasts we enjoy today have in common is that they are PRESENTER-LED series. Usually in the form of one presenter and their guests having friendly banter in the studio around their area of expertise, whether that is sport, fashion, history, business etc. Think That Peter Crouch Podcast or Hotboxin’ with Mike Tyson.

The other common podcast format today is the investigative series, where one or two presenters investigate and shed new light on a subject or mystery, like Serial or This American Life. When you think of a ‘podcast’ chances are you are thinking of one of these two formats.

In both the presenter is centre stage. Whether they are driving the conversation or moving the story along with their personality, intelligence and wit, or they are maintaining intrigue with their ability to read a carefully researched script, these are presenter heavy podcasts where he/she gets the floor for much of the time.

But one question we have been asking over the years at c60media is where is the MONTAGE documentary podcast? A montage documentary in radio/audio is a style of programme where there is no presenter. Instead it is a montage of voices, sounds, music or archive, cleverly woven together so that the story is told without a presenter. With roots in BBC radio production it is a technique that has been used in BBC radio documentaries for decades, and makes for arguably the best form of radio/audio.

In a montage documentary, rather than providing the listener with information via a written script, voices are brought together to flow so that the listener is left to make their own opinion. It assumes the listener is intelligent enough to draw their own conclusions and to fill any missing pieces of the puzzle as they go on a seamless audio journey without being influenced by a presenter or script. As a producer there are recording techniques and skills that you can learn and employ to help in the recording process.

Perhaps a good analogy of the difference between a presenter led documentary or podcast and a montage documentary or podcast, is the difference between a film and a novel. A film is one directors interpretation of a script or story for your eyes to enjoy. As a viewer you do not have to do much, only to enjoy how the director envisions the story, laid out for all to see.

A novel creates characters and settings in a similar way, but without the visual element, you, the reader, are left to draw your own conclusions about how a character might look, or what a location would sound or feel like, often helped along by well-written descriptions of those people or places. Novels leave more room for your imagination to run free. Films are someone elses’ imagination running free.

Independent producers like Alan Hall, Andrea Rose and Hana Walker-Brown have made some excellent montage documentaries over the years for different stations on BBC Radio. For example Walker-Brown’s The Spirit Of Hessle Road on Radio 4 or Hall’s The Travelling Telescope. Alan Hall has long been a champion of this style of programme making.

One such montage documentary produced by Peter Shevlin from c60media is the award winning Linard’s Travels which was a snapshot into the life of Linard Davies, a baggage attendant at San Francisco airport. We often like to include montage sequences in all our radio documentaries, even if there is a presenter. A good example would be extended moments in Falling Rock or The Road to Rock’n’Roll (both BBC World Service).

Like most national radio output, montage documentaries have always been published as podcasts. Yet there has never been a specific montage documentary podcast series per se, and we really do not understand why?

In recent years television documentaries have shifted largely towards a style where there is no presenter. Most Netflix documentaries and TV true-crime series follow this presenter-less format today. Think The Last Dance or almost all Storyville episodes like OJ: Made In America. Montage is the radio/audio version of a TV documentary with no presenter. Yet despite the podcast revolution, montage has not experienced the rise in popularity that its ‘cousin’ in TV has had. In-fact if anything, the montage documentary has become increasingly rarer in the world of radio/audio. Why?

Through podcasts the whole world is getting more familiar with the realm of audio, so why do they not get to enjoy what is arguably its best form, unless they really know where to look? Surely there is a space for more montage style podcasts in the world? Agree? Please comment and let us know your thoughts?

Written by: Neil Kanwal

What Makes A Great Conference Video?

When shooting at a conference its pretty important to capture the event and how exciting it is for all of the participants. When shooting for AWS (Amazon Web Services) at London’s Excel there is a sense of anticipation and energy that this really is the next big thing. Like at many conferences, there are industry experts, sales people, individuals who are keen to learn and people who are there to simply see what its all about.  This will be the same for the people viewing the videos on social media.

Videos of conferences and events can serve different purposes, number of hits on YouTube, email distribution to current customers and updates on Facebook and Twitter. From a conference video you need to maximise your publicity with what I call the three P’s of conference video – PDQ, Presently, Protracted. 


This element is to try and get a buzz on social media right now. This can be in the form of Periscope/ Facebook live videos with a live presenter going around the conference or even a 4 camera discussion setup. Or it can be something that is recorded and edited in a couple of hours and sent out PDQ on all the social media applications. This requires a small dedicated team and some very good planning!


If the conference is lasting a few days, having a medium scale approach to video may give the appearance of a more polished approach and can have long lasting impact. Interviews with guests and speakers can edit into the all round atmosphere from the conference. These videos may also be used to send once the conference is over, as a ‘thanks for coming’ and a ‘please come next year’.


This is where we get all art-house and avant-garde, where we can get the big cameras in and really start expressing our inner Spielberg. But seriously, we can do some long form interviews with customers and experts and even get some cutaway shots of their life-long business journey. We can tell their story and how the conference is a critical part of that story. This will give a platform to both the customer and the supplier and can be used for many years to come as cross-promotion on all social media networks.

Video production at a conference can take the form of one or more of these approaches. Not forgetting filming of the talks and Q and A’s etc. Conferences are an ideal platform to get a video production plan into action and the videos you make can help promote your business for many months to come. Some final questions to ask:

Rationale: Why are you making the video and who is it for?

Treatment: Presenter led or customer focused? Do you have any customers/speakers willing to partake in your video?

Platform: What is the best social media platform to get your message heard?

Timescale: When do you need to get your video on social media?

AWS gets their customers involved in their videos long before the conference takes place. Here are some examples of videos from C60Media, shot at AWS conferences; Ocado, First Group and Dunelm (these fall into the ‘Protracted’ conference video).

How To Shoot A Vox Pop

Vox Pops or Voice of the People interviews (Man on the Street Interviews in the US) are notoriously difficult for journalists and Market Research specialists alike. The most difficult thing is stopping people in the street and expecting them to have time to answer a few questions. How many times have you stopped for market research? Being on the side of the researcher, the tables have turned! I for one stop more now than ever before.

Researchers can come in many forms, from students doing research for their dissertation, to charity workers trying to get their message across. So there is a battle on our streets for willing volunteers to stop and spare a moment or two. So you have to be a little different, particularly if you want to stop someone to appear on camera. Have you thought about bright clothing? Waving at someone? Or having a big smile? All of these can help you engage with your audience. In addition, have you thought about offering an incentive? A gift voucher or cash can go down well, or a gift from the company might be useful as well.

Where will you be conducting the research? Foot-fall is really important. You need lots of people going past so you can select the right demographic for your research. Some respondents may want to talk about equality issues, but not finance, so don’t feel bad if someone stops but really doesn’t have anything to say on the subject.

If you are shooting video, there are a few no-go’s. Don’t shoot near heavy traffic, fountains, loud music or have flat brick backgrounds. These are on-streets videos and they need to look like the streets of your town or city. Having some iconic land marks for b-roll is useful for the edit as well. And change the background each time, you don’t want the same shot for every respondent.

And then, you just have to formulate your questions for your research and get out there with your camera and microphone.  Plenty to think about, and if you need any help, give Peter Shevlin at c60media a call – number is on the contact page.

Good luck – and don’t forget – have fun out there, people do stop for big smiles!

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Market Research Video London

What are Vox Pops?

People often ask us, what are Vox Pops? Well it comes from the latin, “Vox populi” which literally means “Voice of the people” (In the US they refer to Vox Pops as MOTS (Man On The Street) interviews). Vox Pops are often used in journalism to garner public opinion; questions we’ve seen recently on TV have included, “What do you think of Brexit” or “Who are you likely to vote for in the coming general election?”. In business, Vox Pops can be used as a Market Research tool to gain popular opinion of a brand, product or service. It’s perfect for instant reactions for a youtube campaign or marketing presentation. Recently we conducted research on behalf of a personal finance specialist, we captured some great respondents, one who was just off to his financial advisor to unlock some of his pension pot early. With Vox Pops, you just never know who will stop and answer your questions, but you can select a demographic to aim for in advance, for example, millennials. So know who you want to ask, what are the questions going to be and what you will do with the videos once you have collected your research. Knowing these things will help us stop the right people, ask the right questions and shoot for your end platform or distribution channel.

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Video Promo in London for Vox Pops on Carnaby Street
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Why Market Research Vox Pops in London?

Far too often, we think we know what our customers think and want because – well, we just know, that’s all. Wrong! Successful businesses thrive when they meet the needs of their customers. But what do they actually want?  There should be few activities as important as finding out what your customers want from your products and services. Fortunately, there are a variety of practical methods that businesses can use to gain feedback from customers.

The methods you choose and how you use them depend on what the type of feedback that you want from customers. Primary research is information that comes directly from the source – that is, potential customers or current customers. There are five pillars to this research: deciding the questions you need answers to, deciding what information you need to collect in order to answer those questions, deciding how you’re going to collect the information, how you’re going to analyse it, and what you’re going to do with the results.

Vox Pops and focus groups are a great way to do this, give us a question list and we’ll find out more for you, sending you videos of each ‘man/woman on the street’ (MOTS) interview or Vox Pop or even a focus group. Video allows the researcher to spend more time reviewing the footage and therefore will provide a more in-depth analysis for their client. Video has been proven to generate invaluable information that can greatly improve the a product or service offered.

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Gamer Vox Pops London

We at c60media are often asked what makes a good Vox Pop? The answer to that is to know your audience. We need to know who you want to answer your vox pops; your target market. On this Gamer Vox Pops we were looking for male gamers within a certain age bracket. This made asking questions much easier and on a subject the interviewees were passionate about. It made it fun for us too.  So know your audience and know what questions you need answering, the rest will be easy!

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Shooting for AWS in October 2019

We’ve been shooting with AWS for since 2012 when their conferences were held at the Business Design Centre. Now their services have grown they often fill the Excel. These are a set of interviews with their customers, that day we interviewed representatives from FirstGroup, Inmarsat and Dunelm.


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Shoot for MentorXChange

Great meeting the guys from MentorXChange.  Thanks for a great day in Mayfair! This was a two camera shoot with a slider to get those nice gliding shots.  Clip mic and shotgun mic and the cameras were Sony A7’s. All edited on Adobe Premiere.

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