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In Conversation

Video Marketing 101 with Alex Minor

If your business isn't using video in your marketing strategy, you're already behind.

November 2, 2020

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Our guest Alex Minor talks through how to get started with video at your company, and why it's so important, no matter your industry.

The following interview is an excerpt from our video series, SHIFT - In Conversation. To watch the full interview and see more video content, click here. Or you can listen to the SHIFT - In Conversation podcast here.

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Alex Minor - Video Marketing Strategist - Eye AM Media 
Grace Amodeo - Program Manager - SHIFT 

Grace:
Tell us about yourself, and how you got interested in marketing and video production. 

Alex:
I started out as a musician growing up. Music led me into going to school in Florida, a school called Full Sail which focuses on various forms of digital media, movies, video games, and  audio. I eventually started freelancing in the corporate audio visual market as an audio guy, but I saw there was way more opportunity on the video side of things. I eventually bought some of my own equipment and started shooting my own stuff. I worked on indie films and some documentary shorts, and that really felt right to me. Learning people’s stories and helping them showcase that. And somewhere along the line the concept of video for business came up, and it was just like documentary filmmaking of another sort. 

Grace:
Tell us a little more about your company, Eye AM Media. 

I feel a kinship with the smaller business owners, the ones that don’t have endless gobs of money to throw at the marketplace, because I feel like I can really make a difference there.

Alex:
We're a video marketing agency. Most of our clients are either coaches, consultants, or small business owners in the Orlando area. I really like working with the decision maker of the company, I’m not really trying to service humongous brands. I feel a kinship with the smaller business owners, the ones that don’t have endless gobs of money to throw at the marketplace, because I feel like I can really make a difference there. I can really make an impact. And that’s what I want to do at the end of the day, I want to help people grow their brands, change their lives, and help them help more people. 

Grace:
Why should all brands be adding video into their marketing strategy?

Alex:
Because if they're not, they're already behind. Video marketing or commercials used to be only for the biggest brands, for the people with all the money. That used to be because the barrier of entry was really, really high. These days, the barrier is gone. The internet has become the great equalizer. You don’t need broadcast television, you’ve got multiple channels that are completely under your control where you can put video content. Most of us are walking around with a small creative studio in our pocket. 

These days, the barrier is gone. The internet has become the great equalizer. You don’t need broadcast television, you’ve got multiple channels that are completely under your control where you can put video content.

Grace:
How do you decide what type of video is best for each brand?

Alex:
The two main types of content that businesses should be cognizant of are macro content and micro content. Macro content is the stuff you want to call somebody like me for. That’s going to be your highly produced, maybe scripted out, very intentional videos that are supposed to last for several years. They represent your brand in the most epic way possible. But keep in mind that the content shouldn’t be all about you, that content should be focused on your customers, their needs, and the type of change that you can make in their lives. Yes, you’re going to sneak in your products and services, but the main point of the conversation in all of that content should be your customer, it’s really about what’s in it for them. Micro content is the stuff that usually ends up on social media. It’s the top of funnel content, the stuff that keeps you top of mind. Stuff that’s going to be showing people that you’re human, bringing them into the business, giving them good advice. It’s not only going to showcase your expertise, but empower them at the same time. You don't have to shoot it with a legit camera and have the gorgeous lighting. The message is what's the most important thing.

Grace:
What are some of the questions you ask as a marketer before you get started on a video project?

Alex:
The first thing that I need to know is why they think they need video content. Why now? Why do you think it’s going to work for your purpose, and what is that purpose? That’s going to inform all the choices that we make. I also have to understand what your business is, and how it works. How have you been acquiring customers before, and how do you want to be acquiring customers now? What is the action that you’re hoping people will take once they see the content? Those conversations can lead in different places. And it might turn out that you don’t need the thing that you think you need. 

Grace:
You also offer something called the “video business card”, what is that? 

Alex:
The video business card is a multifaceted tool. A lot of people might call this your “about us” video or your “brand” video, your brand story. I don’t like to call it those things because the mistake I see in so many of these videos is that the point of view is very selfish. It’s about us, who we are, what we’ve accomplished. Everything in a video business card should be about the client, it’s about the customer. It’s about the change that you make in people’s lives. It’s about the service and why you do the service. What’s your personal motivation? I work mostly with smaller businesses, individuals who are growing a brand, people who tend to have very close relationships with the people they serve. People want to do business with people, and the video business card does a great job of humanizing you, making you real to somebody, and giving them all the tools and information they need to make 90% of their decision before they even meet with you. 

People want to do business with people, and the video business card does a great job of humanizing you, making you real to somebody, and giving them all the tools and information they need to make 90% of their decision before they even meet with you. 

Grace:
Talk me through the distribution strategy for a marketing video. What is the difference between all the available channels, and which one is best for a business?

Alex:
It's about knowing your audience, and knowing where they live. If your target audience is over 30-35 years old, they’re probably on Facebook in some capacity. If you’re targeting early twenties or late teens, then they’re probably on TikTok and Instagram, maybe Snapchat. Everybody in the world is on YouTube, but is YouTube a good place for your business? It really depends on what kind of content you’re trying to put on YouTube. If all you’re trying to do is make sales videos, don’t bother with YouTube, because you’re not going to get any traction there. But if you want to actually inform and educate your customers, or have your videos be a resource that people can find over a long period of time, then YouTube might be the spot for you. Maybe your content doesn’t necessarily live on YouTube, but your commercials do. 

Grace:
Do businesses always have to allocate budget for an outreach strategy, or is there a way to do it organically?

Alex:
It depends on your larger strategy. If Facebook is going to be your vehicle of choice and you don’t want to spend time growing a Facebook community or audience like that, then yes you probably need to put money behind your content. Organic reach on Facebook is pretty much dead, people are not on Facebook to look at businesses. If you think you’re just going to post content to your Facebook business page and it’s going to get seen by tons of people, you’re crazy. Unless you already have a humongous audience that are super fans, then maybe you don’t need to pay a lot of money. But even Facebook is trying its best to make it so that you finally give in, and start to pay. And my last piece of advice to anyone in the audience is that if you are a business owner and you’re not on LinkedIn, you should be!

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Would you like to participate in a future In Conversation video interview? Email grace@shift.io for more information.

Grace Amodeo is a program manager at SHIFT, where she oversees the annual SHIFT Creative Fund grant program. She is a graduate of Emerson College, where she studied film with a concentration in directing narrative fiction. Grace lives in Los Angeles.
Read more by Grace Amodeo