DCIM125GOPRO

Lost at Sea, the value of planning

Always have a backup plan and consider the possible outcomes.

So why am I talking about this? Well, because I didn’t during a recent shoot and almost lost video footage and a camera. Let me bring you up to speed.

I was filming a documentary project in Scotland. The project required 2 weeks of filming in the magical land of kilted men, painted blue warriors and William Wallace (Braveheart is the movie if you want to learn more about him). We filmed 1 week in the Lowlands, primarily in Edinburgh and surrounding cities, and 1 week in the Highlands, the landscapes you see in Braveheart. Anyways, it was the second to last day of filming. We were on the island of Iona in Mull on a beach on the north end of the island (here is a link to view the beach https://goo.gl/maps/5kNhw1z8aYn). To make the best use of the time I set up a GoPro, that we had been using throughout the day to film B and C camera angles, to capture a timelapse of the tide coming in and eventually washing over the camera. Don’t worry, the camera was in a very waterproof case.

After setting up the GoPro I continued filming b-roll with the director, Colin Gunn. After about 5-10 minutes I turned back around to see that the gopro was gone. I looked frantically where I had put it and couldn’t find it. Thinking perhaps it had washed into the ever rising tide Colin and I waded out into the water and began searching through the waist and chest deep water to find it. After 45 minutes of wading, getting very wet, cold, offering silent prayers and Colin getting knocked over by a particularly vicious wave we gave up. Walking back to the primary camera which had been placed a very safe distance from the waves I looked down and saw the handle to the GoPro sticking out of the sand. Pulling it out of the sand I let loose a few yells and screams worthy of a war movie.

Lost GoPro

So why tell you this? In business and marketing you always need to have a backup plan for the important things from a physical backup of business files to an alternative ad idea in case the one you spent hours on isn’t well received by the target market. Also, consider what might happen if not everything goes according to plan. Basically do what I didn’t do, consider as many of the possible outcomes as you can, have a backup plan and don’t think that everything will go according to plan. Like I learned, almost the hard way, the sea does what it will no matter our plans.

Cheers, Corey
Provident Media Group
Creative video production is the new show and tell.
providentmediagroup.com

Video Testimonials

The Power of Video Testimonials

Video testimonials are a powerful tool for your marketing arsenal.

Whether you live here in Denver, CO or elsewhere, you have probably heard the above statement before. But I want to show you some evidence for why video, video production and especially video testimonials are a powerful tool in your marketing arsenal. I have four points to illustrate this, so let’s get started.

  • First, lets start with video in general. According to the Social Science Research Network, 65% of people are visual learners, 30% learn by hearing and the remaining 5% learn by doing. So right off the bat video pretty much covers 95% of learning styles in that it combines visual and audible learning.
  • Second, lets address testimonials in general. Entrepreneur.com posted an article by Derek Gehl, an internet marketing expert with years of experience, on how to effectively use testimonials. Derek laid out the three reasons why testimonials are so effective. Testimonials build trust, aren’t “salesy” and most importantly they overcome skepticism. You have probably heard the phrase “People will buy from those that they know, like and trust”. When you can overcome skepticism, build trust and do so in a way that doesn’t sound like a sales pitch, you will have a stronger relationship with your clients and customers.
  • Third, Kim Kardashian uses them. Ok, not exactly Kim, but the company that she, Brian Lee (co-founder of legalzoom.com and The Honest Company), Robert Shapiro (co-founder of legalzoom.com) and M. J. Eng launched in March of 2009 called ShoeDazzle. ShoeDazzle is a shoe delivery service that for only $39.95 per month ships high fashion shoes, bags and accessories to women monthly. ShoeDazzle solicited it’s most loyal customers via Facebook and email to submit a video about what surprised them the most about ShoeDazzle. The results were pretty incredible, with over 70,000 videos being viewed online, leading to 1,000 member sign-ups (FYI, that is a gross of $39,950) and their website traffic in the month of March following the campaign increased to 2.4 million monthly visitors compared to 956,000 only two months prior.  You can read more about this from the original article by Inc.com
  • Fourth, they just work. A personal recommendation from a current or past customer is extremely powerful. Watch the below video and you will see what I mean.

 

Thanks for reading! Feel free to share your reasons for using video testimonials and any other comments below!

How long is too long

How long is too long?

When I am talking with business owners, I am often asked how much I charge for producing a web video. In order to answer this I ask how long do they want the video to be and if they want dancing unicorns. You know, the usual stuff. Generally, they say 2­-3 minutes and no. Is 2-3 minutes too long for a web video? I tell them it generally is and here’s why.

These days people have an increasingly shorter attention span (thank you Twitter) and 2­-3 minutes isn’t effective in getting more views. I did some research and found, thanks to labnol.org, this chart based on a study done by Wistia.com.

How long is too long

The results? Shorter videos get more views, generally. People are more likely to keep watching your video if it is shorter. Basically you want a video that is short and to the point. Now a video can be short, but if you don’t state the purpose within the first few seconds, you will have a hard time keeping an audience. Now another very interesting result of the chart is this. If you make a video that is 3-5 minutes long you will have roughly the same percentage of viewers (provided the content is good) as a 2-3 minute video. Why you ask?

My unproven theory is a gut reaction I have when watching a video. 2-3 minutes can portray a good bit of info but 3-5 minutes can give more info, but it doesn’t seem to be much longer when watching. Can I prove my theory? No, not at this time.

So the takeaway from this is:

  • Shorter is better in most cases
  • Get to the point/front load your information
  • Content is king

Want the full scoop on the results? Here is the full article by Wistia.com