Action Studios: here to stay, here to grow
It’s been an action-packed period for Action Studios and as the team prepares to take on the next projects, we sat down with Rayan Ahmed, Director, Action Studios to recall the past months’ highlights, discuss current trends and look into the factors that distinguish the brand from its peers.
How would you describe the past months? What were the main highlights for Action Studios?
R.A: Since officially launching in September 2021, Action Studios – our dedicated production arm – has seen its output and quality shoot into orbit. With our core story ideation, pre-production, stakeholder outreach, and content creation activities for Dubai World Trade Centre work providing a major new revenue stream for the business, we were appointed as the lead production agency for the Dubai Department of Economy and Tourism’s 2021/22 winter retail calendar for Dubai Shopping Festival. The team developed a drip feed of sharable social content to drive engagement and footfall through the festival’s enthralling 45 days, delivering 250+ hours of on-ground coverage and 450+ video pieces of content.
Action Studios represents a strategic pivot to an in-house solution for traditionally outsourced work. What are the main USPs that distinguish Action Studios from other production agencies? In other words, what makes Action Studios the partner of choice for the brand’s current clientele?
R.A: It’s evident that content (video in particular) has been on the rise over the past few years and is in demand. More and more platforms are emerging, formats are adapting, demand for video content is rising and the list goes on. Video is on the rise and here to stay, but we already knew this. In a rapidly evolving country like the UAE, the number of production houses and content creators are endless, so what makes us different? This a question we get asked a lot. Yes, we have the equipment. resources, and experience, but so do our competitors. Ultimately, we’ve built a team of filmmakers and story tellers that has brought years of combined knowledge and experience from the film and TV industries, social media content production houses and digital marketing agencies. We wanted a team that truly understands content and how stories can be told and sold for different screens, platforms and audiences.
In providing high-end productions for clients and partners, quality makes all the difference. We combine content formats and narratives and cater to what audiences really want, where they want to see it, and how they prefer to engage with it. How do we know this? Through data. Our ideas only come from brainstorming, and through analytics, which show what has worked in the past, who engaged with the content, their reaction, the elements used in video (from shapes and music to colours). We look at the overall psychology of content. Our vision is to tell stories that create emotional contagion, drive conversations and influence.
How does the service offering of Action Studios fit into the overall positioning and aspirations of Action Global Communications?
R.A: With more than 25 years in the Emirates, Action UAE has executed integrated campaigns, compelling, value-driven communications and memorable activations that connect with audiences. We are storytellers by trade, and video was simply another medium to harness. In the past we have outsourced third-party photographers and videographers to produce and supply video news releases (VNRs) or B-roll to broadcast media, event coverage, and even interviews. Now, we have integrated PR, digital, and video – it’s a compelling mixture of content options.
With user preferences and digital trends continuously evolving, how do you see the future for Action Studios?
R.A: We are in an era of constant change. Viewers today want engaging and relevant content, whether it’s for educational purposes or for pure entertainment. They expect it at their convenience, in the format of their liking, on the platform of their choice, and in their preferred language. Content has to be catered to audience needs.
We’ve learned a lot since the pandemic. Online consumption behavior has not only changed, there is a new norm on how people interact and consume information and utilise technology on a daily basis. Video streaming services have surged, e-commerce has accelerated, and AR/VR is of huge interest. Content plays a vital role in these trends. Like everyone else, Action Studios must adapt and cater to change. With video no longer merely an enabler facilitating wider PR or social media remits of our clients, we’re excited about offering something a little different to existing options in the market – and opening new areas of service growth across the UAE business. We are here to stay and we are here to grow.
To discuss how Action Studios can help grow your brand, get in touch with Rayan at [email protected]