DHD’s week at this year’s SXSW Conference is off to a great start. In just the past few days, our team has experienced a vast array of conference sessions, films, interactive experiences, and networking events that have spurred our creativity. Further, SXSW has challenged some long-held ideas about our industry and the future of video. Among the many sessions, several have converged upon a theme that is central to our work at DHD Films. How does one create relevant content?

This recurring thread has come up in sessions covering topics from video to design to content marketing. This is because, at the heart of all of these distinct disciplines, audience relevance is key. Whether the goal be repeat viewership, sales conversions, or brand loyalty, brands and businesses alike must establish a genuine connection to their audience that goes beyond the merely transactional. Content aimed at impersonal “targets” can only go so far, and in the current environment of increasingly personalized media, content that doesn’t directly speak to the audience is bound to be overlooked. As Kristina Halvorson, founder and CEO of the consultancy Brain Traffic, put it during her session at SXSW this week, we must create “content that is valuable, meaningful, and useful to an audience.”

Relevance can take many forms. At the very core, however, it has to do with not only knowing what the audience wants, but what the expectations are around the kind of content they want to receive. User research and testing are one way to glean this knowledge as it’s increasingly being deployed across brands and businesses as diverse as fashion, healthcare, and even real estate. In his keynote speech earlier this week, filmmaker Darren Aronofsky put it this way: “Where is the audience?” In order to gain empathy from our audiences, we must truly put ourselves in their place and know where they are coming from.

DHD Films has a proven track record of helping our clients find out what their story is, and how to best relay that to their audience. By partnering with our clients to strategically deploy the right kind of media on the right platform, we can help businesses bond with their customers and create the kind of brand loyalty that leads to repeated engagement as well as the right kind of relationship that both businesses and customers are sure to benefit from.

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