Filming the Aquascape Pond Squad show has been a lot of work but a total blast too! If it weren't for our Certified Aquascape Contractors (CAC) though, we wouldn't be able to pull off what we are doing. People ask us all the time how they get their projects featured on our show. I think the best way to showcase how to land a project for the Aquascape Pond Squad show is to tell the story of how our latest shoot in the desert came to be.
Ralph and Alison Biezad of Pondscapes in AZ got us involved with a truly amazing organization, Sunshine Acres. I wrote about building a pond for Sunshine Acres previously. If you haven't watched the video about the incredible place Sunshine Acres is, just check out this profile the Today Show did on them.
I want to talk about Ralph and Alison here though. Specifically how they found, designed, sold and eventually got us to film this project for our Aquascape Pond Squad Reality Show. The adage "nothing worth having comes easy" comes to mind here.
Pondscapes was originally contacted through their local distributor, Ewing Irrigation, about a potential pond project at the Sunshine Acres facility. They wanted a pond for some pet ducks while creating a natural area for the kids to connect with nature and the local wildlife.
Ralph immediately contacted us soon after by submitting this story idea at http://www.aquascapeinc.com/pondsquad/show-ideas. Pondscapes included pictures of the area and did a simple write-up describing the facility and the story behind the proposed pond. Along with the description was a pond design showing us the scale of the project and the surrounding area so we could gain a perspective on what would be involved in the build.
Ralph and Alison also contacted us regularly inquiring about the status of our involvement. If there's one thing I can say that helped us decide to move forward, it was their passion for the project and persistence in getting us involved! Trust me when I say that there's no shortage of good stories and projects for us to film. Our challenge is finding the right projects at the right time with the right partners to pull it off.
The most important piece is the story of the customer and the project. This is critical because it makes a show worth watching to potential viewers. A super cool build without an interesting story to tell is probably not even going to be considered for filming. Sunshine Acres is overflowing with different stories of beautiful children, an incredible setting, and an inspirational founder which made for abundant options for story angles. Additionally, we will only work with CACs we believe are capable of constructing the projects specified. We will showcase these companies to potential consumers, and need to fully trust that they could recreate the kind of water feature we create together for the show.
From a logistics side of things, we need to know that there's a stocking distributor in the area along with a rock yard and landscape supply facility. Finally, we even consider the location of restaurants and hotels along with appropriate on-site facilities to accommodate our team while filming. There's a lot of moving parts to consider when you're moving multiple people in and out … and always on tight time frames.
Ralph and Allison not only provided housing for all six of us, they made sure all the other potential issues that could arise would be able to be handled. Just to give you an example, here's just one of the scenarios that arose half way through the project with Pondscapes that confirmed our decision to film with them. When we realized that we needed additional large character boulders to create a dramatic effect, Ralph didn't question it and had the rocks we requested within 12 hours. He was ahead of the game because he already had a discussion with his rock yard describing what we were doing and got them on board before we actually arrived. Pondscapes clearly had a great relationship with all of their vendors and everyone was on the same page. From seeing Ralph texting his Ewing Rep at 10:00 pm while we were having a couple beers after the job, to watching the distributor pulling up at 7am the next morning … those are the kinds of examples of what will be needed in order to land an Aquascape Pond Squad project.
The only thing we can guarantee is that we'll have changes with any project; the customer needs to trust that we will build the best possible project for their budget. Ralph made it clear to the director of the facility that we needed artistic control of the project and they totally agreed and allowed us to work within the parameters of the overall master plan for the property. There are certain aspects that we need to highlight in order for it to work from a filming/editing/storytelling perspective and this allowed us the latitude for us to get what we needed from the project.
And speaking of budget, each and every Aquascape Pond Squad project needs to be fully funded by the company bringing us in. Sunshine Acres is a not-for-profit organization and the budget for the water feature Pondscapes designed far exceeded their allotted monies. Since they wanted the water feature though, and since it was being filmed for the Aquascape Pond Squad, the facility got Texas Roadhouse to graciously support the increased cost. We donate our labor; every other aspect of the build however needs to be handled by the CAC.
Our goal as a company is to help our customers succeed in the water feature business. The Aquascape Pond Squad is going be a huge part of our efforts going forward. We want to support and highlight our CAC network on as many projects as logistically possible over the coming year. If you have the right story at the right time and all the logistical concerns can be addressed, we'd love to highlight your company to the masses. Keep the project ideas coming and we might just be coming to shoot an episode of the Aquascape Pond Squad!
Submit project ideas at http://www.aquascapeinc.com/pondsquad/show-ideas.