At Hunting With Pixels we’re very excited to run our first Social Media Profile Video course on the 18th of June. The reason we’re passionate about using profile videos is that they really encompass everything we’re about at Hunting With Pixels; creating meaningful connection.
How we make decisions on who to do business with
Connection is everything. We are all hard wired to make decisions about who we trust and do business with by mixing ‘digital’ and ‘analog’ information. Digital is the data: product features, price, ROI. All the stuff that marketers tend to bang on about. Analog is how we feel about someone: tone of voice, personality, posture: all the non verbal communication. Research shows that we remember how people made us feel, much more than what they said, so how we say something matters.
Trust And Connection
Typically, we base our decisions on who we work with or hire on whether we feel trust and connection to someone. When it comes that aspect of business, authentic and well structured video can really make a difference to how your audience perceives you, provided it’s authentic.
People don’t buy what you sell. They ‘buy’ you as the person to help them
If we want to find our tribe, we need to have the courage to be vulnerable and talk about what really drives us. Here are a few examples of social video profiles we created for the lovely people at Atkinson Vinden in Sydney:
So, What’s your essence?
In our course we’ll work with you on creating a 30-60 second profile that summarises who you are and what you’re about in a way that’s authentic, confident, and relaxed. The end result is a a beautifully shot, high quality video that helps you connect to your tribe.
What’s in the box
1.A content session around building the story around why you do what you do. Let’s explore what your purpose is and how we can write a short script around it. This will be done a small groups at the Hoffice on the 18th of June. 2. Coaching and filming. A one on one session with you where we coach to be the best you can be in front of the camera and capture some of your magic. 3. A fully finished, ready-to-go social media profile video on any social media platform you want.
What you get out of this
The outcome of your course is a short video that you can use on your website, LinkedIn profile, Facebook page or wherever your audience want to connect with you.
Bit of an introvert?
This course is definitely for you. Introverts can be amazing presenters if they just get to tell their story instead of being pushed to do the ‘presenting’ thing. Here’s an article we wrote about ‘not being good on camera‘. There’s no such thing as not being good on camera, there’s just being authentic or not being authentic. https://vimeo.com/102607249
$ 895 during the pilot phase, which is a steal considering you’d pay more for the video alone! We’re planning courses in Sydney and Melbourne in August and September. Drop us a line if you’re interested. Here’s a video on why authenticity matters: https://vimeo.com/114209651
How much does a video cost? How much should it cost? Not a lot these days. Video has made a major shift in terms of price point. A few years back you’d pay the price of a small car for a corporate video, now you can get professional video for a fraction of that.
Quality has also shifted tremendously. Where we used to shoot interviews with one or two DV cameras, we now work with three cinema grade cameras so you get a pretty slick outcome. https://vimeo.com/42529714
Are we asking the right question?
Is asking ‘How much is a video?’ the right question though? The lower cost of video has made it more attainable for SMEs and educators, but are we getting better value?
Results with video
Video is a means to an end. We want brand awareness, business growth, learning outcomes. So how do we figure out what we need to spend to get those?
Cost vs outcome
Instead of looking at cost, let’s look at our outcomes, for example: I want to improve my sales by 15% – how much would video content that helps me achieve that goal cost?I want my students to retain my OH&S program for 95% – how do I make that happen?
Define and measure success
If we base our budget on outcomes, everyone gets better results. You get the outcome you need, while setting a realistic budget so you don’t set each other up to fail.
Apples and pears
If you define success well, you can aim for a specific outcome. If you then ask for quotes based on those, you can get figures that you can actually compare. Personally, I’d go for apples because of their superior nutritional benefits but apparently the jury is still out on that one.
How much is a video? Cost vs value
If we quote someone for a video without understanding the budget and business outcomes, we’re basically stabbing in the dark. As we’ve learned from The Walking Dead, you want to do your stabbing in daylight.
Video can be made to any budget
If we don’t define our outcomes, we incentivise lowballing instead of thinking along the same line as each other. Quoting like this creates an adversarial relationship instead of a partnership. There are no winners there.
We want you to succeed
Our aim is for our clients to be advocates for our brand because they love what we achieved for them. We’re interesting in long term success. That only works if happy with the outcomes: please help us make that happen for you by offering clarity.
But I still need to know what a video costs!
If you want to make a useful comparison between video production companies, set a benchmark.
How to set a benchmark
A good way to go about costing is to offer an example. For instance, how much would it cost to create a two minute version of this video if we shoot it in Sydney CBD? https://vimeo.com/121755357 When you benchmark the length of the video, the production value and the location you get quotes based on a comparable value.
If the quotes are in the ballpark, another important differentiator is whether you share values: https://vimeo.com/124278716 Shared values will tell you whether the people you’re considering as a production partner are the kind of people you want to work with. Being aligned in terms of values is the single most important factor in making any project work. No amount of tech skills and facilities will make content that connects; it takes collaboration between like minded people.
Last week I did a talk at Ignite Sydney. it was a wonderful experience speaking in front of 600 of the nicest people you could ever meet. The other speakers blew me away! Here’s video about the experience: https://vimeo.com/127574623
It’s not easy.
As an introvert I’m not naturally drawn to public speaking or video blogging, but in the past years I’ve come to realise it’s important to not give in to that tendency – public speaking is a very a skill that will help you grow your business beyond your network.
We are our own worst ememies when it comes to public speaking: the stories we tell ourselves about who we are can be very self limiting: https://vimeo.com/127574624
How to do it anyway
Write the presentation 4-5 weeks beforehand: you’ll need the time to develop the idea.
Find brutally honest partners
I reached out to a small group of people who I can trust will give me honest feedback: I just filmed myself and shared with a small group. My wife Beth, John, Sandi, Steve, Carolyn Tate, John Yeo and John Downes: you’ve been a huge support. Thanks for your time and wisdom!
Talks On Purpose
A major step in the journey for me was taking part in Slow School Talks On Purpose program. It really helped me get over the hurdle and start anyway. Here are a few thoughts on starting the journey that may be helpful for fellow introverts:
You don’t have to believe in your self.
Generally, people tell you that you need to confidence and then the speaking gets better. My experience is that it’s the other way around. I started with a belief I can’t do it, but by simply going ahead I gained the confidence.
Don’t set the bar too high
I realised I don’t need to be amazing. Just good enough to get the idea across.
Anger is not always a destructive force: it can really drive you to go outside of your comfort zone. Anger can be the impetus to change things. It can drive you to do things you never imagined doing. The best presentations are done by speakers who channel their passion about something that frustrates them. Here’s an great example: https://vimeo.com/121752757
It’s bigger than you
Karen isn’t talking about herself; her purpose and idea is much, much bigger than that. Introverts will feel more comfortable with this principle. The audience is interesting in learning about the idea, not the person.
Your audience wants you to succeed.
They’re not there to see how you stack up; only you think that. They’re invested in hearing a good story or an interesting idea.
You’re not doing yourself justice if you don’t give it a go. I’m no rockstar presenter by any standards, but I’m so grateful I’ve pushed myself! To be continued; I hope I see you on the journey too!
In terms of ‘production value’, this is the lowest quality video we’ve made in years. The cameras are shaky, the angles weird, the colours don’t match the audio is all over the place.
But who cares?
But we love it! https://vimeo.com/108328728
Real people, authentic stories
This clip works because it’s about people who genuinely love Wordcamp. Why make a slick commercial when you have this going on for your brand?
Video production value – does it matter?
People in our industry can get a bit carried away with focussing on making really slick looking video, but does that mean the content is effective? Video production value is important in many contexts, but there’s no substitute for showing a community of people who love your brand. That’s when you really start cooking with gas.
Here’s a statistic to think about; 85% of our audience will trust peer recommendations more than any marketing This is why a good business video is about what you do an why. If you want to let people know you’re brilliant, it will have to be your clients who tell the story.
Keeping it real
In the past we’ve been asked to hire a few actors to create ‘case studies’ and ‘client testimonials. We don’t do that for two reasons: 1. Why fake it? If you run a great business, it should be easy to find three clients who love what you do and are happy to talk about it. If not, you need a better product! If you don’t have the product in the market yet, tell a story that describes the problem your product solves. 2. Actors do other work. The social media fallout of your ‘production manager’ turning up in a major beer commercial (yes, that really happened) is not worth the benefit of slicker delivery that actors can offer.
But what if my clients are terrible presenters?
Our experience is the anyone will come across well if they talk about something they fully understand and care about. Any other issues with delivery are about clever coaching and directing. It’s the video producer’s job to make sure your clients are in the right mindset to tell their story.
Let go of control
It’s important to not try to control the outcome too much by sending scripts or ‘overdirecting’. When you interrupt the client’s train of thought and try to get your branding message in there, you will lose the authenticity. Once that’s gone, so is the credibility of the testimonial.
Mix it up
In video the ‘rule of three’ applies. When three people discuss something it’s feels like a credible story. Less is too little, more can be overwhelming. Here’s an example: http://vimeo.com/42601926 Mixing your team’s narrative with that of your clients can also be a great option: https://vimeo.com/52974598
And for something completely different
Here’s a beautiful and unusual way to get a client testimonial. You know you’re doing something special if your clients write a poem about the experience they had with you! https://vimeo.com/123904559
And finally: Keep it short
60-90 seconds is enough to establish you’re awesome!
Miles Davis once said that jazz is about the notes you don’t play. Communication around building trust is not about more information: that will just overwhelm our audience.
How we decide who to trust
The people we want to connect with make decisions about who they trust based on what seems to be very little information: a short story, a few non verbal and visual cues. How does that work?
Thin slicing is the ability to find patterns in events based only on “thin slices,” or narrow windows, of experience. Studies have shown that brief observations can be used to assess outcomes, at levels higher than expected by chance.
How this applies to video
An interesting aspect of visual content is that we are surprisingly good at assessing someone’s skill level and intelligence. The research is mind boggling; humans can fairly accurately assess someone’s intelligence and personality just by looking at someone’s photo. We’re not describing prejudice here; this is measurable and the experiments have been repeated with similar results.
People behind the brand
We can use thin slicing and our ability to assess personality by communicating around the people behind brands. Staff profile videos are a great application of this; a 20-30 second video will give our viewers enough information to assess whether they’re a good fit with your culture and values. https://vimeo.com/99794385
Authenticity – you can’t control the outcome
To stick with the jazz analogy; if you write out the whole composition, it stops being jazz. Staff profiles can backfire if they’re overly scripted and contrived. If you do profile videos, you have to allow for variation and deviation. As long as you everyone on board on values and your brand essence, diversity of delivery and opinion will only further strengthen your brand and the communication of purpose. https://vimeo.com/102607249
LinkedIn profile videos
Once you have the staff profile videos in place, you can greatly improve the impact you have by adding them to everyone’s LinkedIn profile. Here’s a tutorial on how to add a video to your LinkedIn profile.
I’m always fascinated by how social media can be an amplifier of ‘outrage’, whether it’s Actual Outrage or Social Media Outrage.
In this video, Geoffrey Stackhouse, managing director of the crisis media training outfit Clarity Solutions discusses some of the underlying causes of Social Media Outrage and offers some ideas on what you can do to manage outrage. https://vimeo.com/118392785
Storybombers – the Outrage Industry
Story bombers are those who hijack your story and create a new narrative around outrage that furthers their cause.
What’s the psychology here?
I love comedian Charlie Brooker’s take on this: “Is it a narcissistic compulsion to demonstrate how much more thoughtful and sensitive you are than the ignorant clod who offended you? An earnest belief that a better world will only be reached after several thousand hours of angry dissent over absolutely every linguistic transgression ever made? A cathartic howl of vague personal unhappiness disguised as a campaign of improvement? Or just something to do between bowel movements?” Read the full article here.
How to be ready for outrage
Because of story bombing, outrage needs to be part of our communication planning. Here are three of Geoffrey’s key points around managing outrage: 1. Monitor your social media constantly. 2. Apology early and often – be seen as empathetic and present. 3. Brace yourself – but don’t be silenced. If your view is considered and well argued, social media can also be a amplifier of the support for your story.
Are we ‘offended’?
I’d love to hear about your experience of outrage, have you been baffled about how a throw away remark can become a social media Sh*tstorm bigger than Ben Hur?
Good news! LinkedIn is finally getting on board the Video Train with the launch of the LinkedIn Professional Portfolio.
LinkedIn now lets you upload images, videos, presentations and documents to your profile to add a nice visual to the otherwise text heavy platform. You can add video and images to the summary, experience and education sections of your profile.
How to add video to your LinkedIn profile: video
Here’s a quick video on how to add video to your LinkedIn profile.
How to Add Images and Video to Your LinkedIn profile: step by step
To add images, documents, presentations or video to your LinkedIn profile, click “Profile” from the menu at the top, then choose “Edit Profile.”
Upload or embed your video
Under each of the entries in your Summary, Experience and Education sections is a new icon—a square with a (+) symbol. Click this button to upload a file or add a link to the video or image you’d like to share.
If you want to add a link, type or paste the link to your content into the “Add a link” field.
The link can be simply a copied and pasted link from Youtube:
Titles and descriptions
To edit the title and description, move your cursor over Profile at the top of your homepage and select Edit Profile.
Scroll to the media sample you’d like to edit and click the pencil icon in the lower-right corner. Click inside the Title and Description fields to edit the text, then click Save. You can also move media samples from one section to another.
Do this by clicking the drop-down menu under “Move this media to” and choose the section of your profile you’d like to move it to.
Click ‘add to profile’ and you’ll see your video appear in your profile.
To rearrange items within the same section of your profile, click and drag them to the spot you want. Any questions? Get in touch!
Why do we find it so difficult to be in the spotlight?
Recently I did a public speaking course with Slow School, an amazing experience. It’s not just about speaker training, it really is about communicating your purpose. As a natural introvert I struggle with the idea of public speaking, actually I’m mortified of just the idea. On the other hand, I feel very passionate about what I do.
So one of my big Bucket List items is to get over that self imposed limitation. I’ll never be great at doing an improvised speech, but I can surely learn to communicate what I do better!
Moonwalking out of the shot
It turns out, a lot of us feel this way. As a video producer I often encounter the same issues with our clients around being filmed, especially among women. Why is being filmed particularly difficult for them? I’ve had confident, competent people in leadership roles drop out of an interview 5 minutes before, and even if they do go ahead I can see a real internal struggle, even though we make a really big effort to make this easy.
Why the pretty boys win
I think this anxiety is the result of in built bias towards what we perceive as ‘natural leaders’; tall, handsome men. When we don’t feel we fit this profile, we feel or are made to feel we don’t really deserve the attention. To me this represents a huge missed opportunity for all of us.
We make it too hard
The reality is that it is harder for women to be in the spotlight. Just look at the attitudes female leaders get in the press, and have you ever read Youtube comments about women. It’s pretty feral.
It needs to change
We can’t make good decisions or communicate our purpose if we don’t involve everyone in our story, and more often than not that purpose is communicate by a ‘leadership type’. Watch me get on my soapbox about this at the TED X graduation night: https://vimeo.com/113572839
This course has really made it clear what my purpose is as an introverted, opinionated producer of video: I want to make sure we make it easier for everyone to tell their story. Because if we’re all involved in the conversation, we’ll get better leadership, more connection and ultimately a better, more inclusive workplace.
Tell your story
It’s not easy to step up but you owe it to yourself and those around you to give it a red hot go. I’d love to hear what you bring to the table!