Showcase #4: It takes two

Content is king—but who’s telling your story?

Tandem Studios is a Christchurch-based content creation expert that tells your story through voice, video, music and online—such as web and social media.

Established in 1974, Tandem is one of Christchurch’s longest-serving, and most respected, creative companies, working with a broad spectrum of clients from recording artists such as Salmonella Dub and Bic Runga, through to producing audio and video content for multinational corporations.

Tandem photos

Left: Director Dave Dunlay recording with producer Deb Stanaway and studio manager Jonny Pipe. Right: Tandem's recording studio.

What sets Tandem apart from other production companies is its mix of experience and expertise in traditional and new media, and its creative approach to producing content for today’s confusingly wide variety of media channels.

Content is king, and Tandem has a unique understanding of the complexities of producing content for marketing, communications, advertising, sales and entertainment. Using this experience and expertise, Tandem guides clients through the process with planning a strategy, full service production and then, most importantly, publication of that content through both traditional and new media and increasingly social media channels.

Here are some of Tandem’s stories:

Case study: In the house

As part of its statutory commitment to New Zealanders, the office of the clerk has to inform and keep the public up-to-date with what is happening in parliament’s debating chamber. The clerk of the house wanted to move parliament into the online and social media environment, utilising online facilities such as YouTube, Facebook and Twitter.

Tandems’ solution was to combine the traditional tool of Parliament TV with a social media element, designing and creating a world-first solution ——an innovative website that has totally changed the way Kiwis interact with their politicians and discover the business of parliament.

Tandem Director, Dave Dunlay says, “We reformat and repurpose Parliament’s traditional content and present it in small searchable segments. This website means, for the first time, you can view and hear your local politician in action without having to watch the entire television broadcast.”

It’s Tandem’s goal to have all that happens in the house, when parliament is sitting up on their site approximately 15 minutes after being broadcast live on television. This means that whatever happens in the house is now available on-demand 24/7 via the website and YouTube, incorporating social media applications, such as Facebook and Twitter—making it interactive and meaning politicians are accessible in a way they’ve never been before.

Dunlay says the social media space has evolved very quickly and creating engaging content is vital. “To capture an online audience, all content must engage, entertain, connect and inform, and it must be made available to view and share when the online audience wants it in a time shifted manner, rather than watching it live on television.”

Recently a series of clips reached viewer numbers of over 20,000, when embedded these clips into its site. This, coupled with the mix of social media channels, meant those clips went viral in a way never seen before with coverage from parliament.

Planning, production, publication

Part of Tandem’s approach is creating content within a client’s budget that will connect and communicate with its market. Achieved through its experience, Tandem understands the mix of today’s media channels. The success is always in strategy planning, producing the right kind of content—whether through blogs, podcast or video, social media channels or a mix of the three—and then, most importantly, connecting through publishing. Tandem will consult with you on what choices are available and help you produce that content and ensure it is seen, heard and can be shared through social media.

Tandem photos

Left: Director Dave Dunlay gets behind the mic. Right: The Tandem team.

Case study: Finding the field

When a writer can’t find someone to publish their work through traditional channels, who can they turn to? Tandem. That's what author Michael Brown did with his latest fictional novel, Finding The Field. Tandem advised him on his website—where Brown's audio book, produced as a podcast, can be found. The site was created to build an online community where people can hear his story, view interviews with the author and create conversations through the blog. It also includes a media room—specifically created for media requests—which includes press releases, photographs, a short audio description of the book, and a full audio and video interview of Brown explaining Finding The Field. The podcast, produced by Tandem, will be free to download from the site in early May and will also be found on iTunes and other podcast directories around the world. The videos can be found on YouTube, and a Facebook multimedia page has been created as well.

Brown, a well-known writer said, “Given the way publishing has gone, there is no other way to do it than this, especially with those who are starting out. And it looks as though it’s going to be money well spent. Compared with self-publishing, it would not be realistic without this sort of approach.”

Dunlay says, “The music industry has gone down this path for some years now, with the likes of MySpace, with artists giving their music away and building a fanbase. Once established, traditional media steps in to publish, to leverage off that existing fanbase. A good example: British band the Artic Monkeys.”

For more, contact Tandem director Dave Dunlay
Phone: 03 366 72 81
Mobile: 0275 409 569

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