Good books for marketing your video business?
Hello to all, I am looking for some good books that will help me marketing my video business.
Macbook Pro 2.4GHz, Intel Core 2Duo, 4GB
Guerilla Marketing - Jay Conrad Levinson
Winning Results With Google Adwords - Andrew Goodman
Selling To Big Companies - Jill Konrath
Lead Generation for the Complex Sale - Brian Carroll
Those are just a few, note that none are video business specific. I haven't read a decent book specifically for our industry, but that makes sense. The sales and marketing principals that guide most video companies are not that different than other B2B companies with an expensive product, complex sale and potentially lengthy sales cycle.
This one just came out today
"The Marketing Secrets of Steve Wargo" by Idrinkyer Milkshake
It includes Cd Rom of every client he's had in the last 5 years with contact info and pricing structures
Here's a thought...
How about just marketing a business?
I just had a conversation with a colleague a day or so ago... His company manufactures various items with graphics on them...he does custom work where you might send him a graphic of your company logo, and he has some stock designs with various themes...outdoors, wildlife, sports, etc.
He organized his website by product, Tshirts, clocks, mugs/cups...etc, etc.
I pointed out to him that the designs were what the customer was looking for and he should format his categories by the themes, not the objects...to which he countered "but we sell Tshirts and clocks"...to which I replied that Target, Wal-Mart, and name any other discount store chain you care to- sells Tshirts and clocks...he sells unique, themed graphics...on various items.
Why do we always think of our business as a "video/film (whatever) business?" Video is a means to an end. General video production is a tough market to really speak to as a national television spot has completely different dynamics than a regional corporate project, or an event project such as a wedding or graduation...
What do you know? What do you specialize in? In the 90's my business was focused on corporate...no weddings, very few TV spots, we could go in and not just deliver a sales video, we could improve a company's sales process by wise use of media...and also by knowing when electronic media wasn't the answer. yes, that did mean that we sometimes turned business away because they may have wanted a video, but they NEEDED something else.
We would show up at an initial meeting for a tradeshow video with very clear stats on our prospective client's industry and we had accumulated some pretty good insight on how to deploy video in a tradeshow situation...attention span...10-20 second message-arcs...use audio, but don't be audio-dependent, etc, etc.
We understood that an appeal to line employees to follow safety regulations and rules had to come in a completely different context than a sales message aimed at engineers...
By the second half of the 90's, 75% of our clients were calling only us with their video project and they'd tell us right off the top "I have to accomplish X and I have Y dollars...can we do that?" Hitting any reasonable budget is possible with the right project design up front...
We sold solutions, and our clients saw results from what we did for them.
A wedding videographer who really knows their business knows the basic structure of most wedding ceremonies from most of the prevalent faiths in their area... They understand what moments absolutely HAVE to be captured for the end product to be the most meaningful to their customer...and the best ones have a sixth sense about when to just stay the hell out of the way. It's an art in itself.
I never did weddings...not because I thought they were below me (many wedding videographers are far more financially successful than I am), but because I have some idea of what I don't know...
Do video production companies market themselves as being able to do corporate AND weddings...AND TV commercials? Sure. All the time.
Do they achieve success this way? Certainly not in all of these areas...
When I started in 1990, I focused on corporate projects. I developed a pretty effective system of being able to keep a solid price by proper planning and clear communication with the client (a fixed price is HUGE in the corporate world...open ended expenditures are stressful). We understood the process of training people and the basic principles of sales. We understood how to query the customer to make sure that what they were asking for was what they really needed...often being the only vendor to come back and say "You don't need a DVD so much as an interactive CDrom that can connect via the web to your ordering platform..." or "You don't need anything we offer...see person X for a printed catalog..." and we pass on the business entirely.
We provided solutions...not videos.
What problems do you most skillfully solve?...and for whom? Concentrate your efforts there and you'll find that dominating a specific niche is far easier than trying to market to the world as a general "videographer" Not to mention that your fee structure improves when you're an expert in something as it makes most bid processes irrelevant...
I wrote an article for the Cow sometime back where I talked a bit about approaching the client as an expert, and looking out for their results from the project...looking out for their business if you will. It will always pay off.
Excellent post Tim. It is how I market my business for the most part. We are targeting a niche market with a solution oriented product. One thing I would like to add if I may. Do the kind of work you enjoy!! It's no secret I can't stand doing weddings even though I've been told I'm very good at them. Therefore, I DON'T DO WEDDINGS!! If you are doing the kind of projects you enjoy it will show. Prospective clients will want that enthusiasm and passion on their projects.
Higher Ground Media