At the end of 2021 we produced 2 new commercials for our client Ironstar. Ironstar is a company that designs and manufactures their own fitness equipment, especially multifunctional cages you can use in home gyms. 

In the blog we’ll go over how we approached this project, pre-production challenges, how did shooting and post-production go.

1. Commercial Concept

Before the start of the project we had a long discussion with Ironstar’s managment regarding their brand’s position within the market and what do we want to achieve with the commercials. The videos should be communicating to young adults who have established jobs and regular paychecks but don’t have the time to visit gym daily. Commercials were planned to be used at the very top of their sales funnel, as one of the first touchpoints between their brand and new audiences.

Fact is many people changed either their jobs or their fitness habits during the pandemic. Some just don’t have the same »home-work-gym« routine they used to have, many gyms were fully or partially closed during this outbreak, some people started working from home and going to the gym became a much bigger challenge than it used to.. That’s why we created 2 different scripts, one featuring male and the other a female protagonist, both showing how comfy yet professional a home gym can look. In the male version of the commercial the script emphasized the fact that you can go »beast mode« even at our own home, while female version focused on »cozy home vibes«, where a woman can easily relax and train for herself.

Final concept: Male/female model is at home, starting their workout using Ironstar’s product. As soon as they start lifting, the surroundings and the lights change, showing the viewer that our protagonist is now »in the zone«. Once they stop their workout, they zone back in to their homes.

Moodboard vs Final look

2. Pre-production

After both concepts got confirmed we took our planning to the next level. We knew who the actors were going to be, we just needed a location where the commercials should be set. Since we only needed a couple of shots in both home settings we decided to shoot everything in our studio instead of looking for suitable locations to fullfill our needs. Location scouting and extended shooting times because of different locations were the main reason why we opted to-recreate both homes directly in our studio. This way we could shoot both commercials in one day, lowering the end cost for our client yet still delivering a quality product. We brainstormed and researched some interior design we thought would fit for our main characters in the commercials, then we got to work.

Director of photography Max Bernard & creative director Miha Stegel.

3. Lights, Camera, Action.

On the day of the shoot the biggest challenge was switching between 3 different sets and making sure we got all the footage before moving on. We were on extremly thight schedule, and even a minor setback would mean extending the shoot from 1 to 2 shooting days, increasing production costs etc.

First we started with the »Fitness zone«, as it was the main scene for both commercials. Once we got the footage from both models, and checked off every shot from shotlist, it was time to switch scenes. It took a lot of dedication and coordination from our team, but’ve successfully transformed not only two but three sets in total that day. We started off with the female room, as we had already painted the wall the day before. To then change it to a male room we only needed to cover up the orange wall with nice wallpapers and rearrange the furniture.

4. Post production

Luckily none of the mentioned commercials required any CGI, but we were still far from finished product. Our editor assembled the shots just the way storyboard planned them out, and then proceeded to color correct and grade the footage, add sound effects, logo and title animation and export it in all formats so they can be used on different platforms.

Important note for the editor: the transition between scenes had to happen exactly at the 6th second. Why? Because that’s the amount of time user sees a youtube commercial before »skip ad« button appears. Our goal was to fully engage our viewer before that happens.

5. Results

After weeks of hard work we were ready to present both commercials to the client and deploy them to the public. First feedback was overwhelmingly positive, but only time will tell if commercials will reached desired effect on our audiences. First numbers from their digital campaigns are definitely trending in the right direction, but I feel like that should be a blog for another time. Meanwhile, you can check both commercials and give us your opinion on them as well 🙂

If you are interested in video production or marketing in general, feel free to reach out and we’ll gladly discuss those topics with you.