Tag Archives for " well known brand "
The whole thing started on Twitter. I followed the filmmaking blog of one of Europe’s top young filmmakers. His tweet put him in Miami a few years ago, right in my own backyard. Nino was on vacation with his girlfriend after having been at NAB. I did the only thing that you should do, when that happens–I invited them to breakfast. “If you ever need help producing a filmmaking masterclass in the States, I’d be happy to help.”
A few months later I get a PM on twitter: “Are you still up for helping us produce a Filmmaking Masterclass in the US with Philip Bloom?” For those of you who don’t know, Philip is one of the most well-known HDDSLR shooters and instructors around, so there is a big opportunity in working with world-class talent like him.
Marketing is in large part positioning your brand. Being able to work together with a world-class group of people rubs off on your brand. Find the best expert in your field and offer to help them put on an event, a show, a film, an article, a workshop – anything that lets you get your brands name out there.
Long story short, I ended up producing 2 filmmaking masterclass workshops. One in Las Vegas and one in Key West, where I learned a lot from Philip and Nino. On top of that the workshops where a lot of fun to run, I made a little money, but most importantly are the connections I made with the instructors and the students. Philip has asked me to help him with some other workshops since then and my most recent video job is a result of producing those workshops: I got to be director of photography on a documentary film for Netflix.
Some MarketingHacks are totally unplanned – like a tweet that lets you recognize a unique opportunity (MarketingHack #8). Others require months of meticulous planning and tons of hard work – like putting together a world-class event to screen your movie (MarketingHack #11).
Then there are others that fall into your lap: Earlier this year I got an email which started off like this: “PHOTO Digital Video magazine/Portable Storage Buyer’s Guide/Editorial request for February issue (SUBMISSION DEADLINE TODAY!)”
You guys know I love ioSafe drives – I’ve got half a dozen I use (some are fireproof – other’s just waterproof) – you know I take my data integrity seriously. Well the good people at ioSafe sent out that email asking me for help. “Can you write a review about our drives?”
Mind you this is not my first interaction with them. They’ve sponsored workshops of mine, I write about how much I love their product on my blog, and they’ve seen me post a photo working in the jungles of Peru on social media featuring their drives.
Back to the email – Brett from ioSAFE asks me if I could write a product review about my experience with the rugged drives. These little guys are tanks: crush proof to 2,500 pounds, drop proof to 10 feet and waterproof at 30 feet for three days. Think of it as a permanent LifeProof case for your hard drive.
The catch is the article I need to write is due the next day. No problem. Since I’ve written about the drives before I know the specs, I know what I want to say – and they know I love the drives. 30 minutes later the post is written, include the photo and it’s send back to Brett. Hey, I’ll take press where I get to write about my work anytime. I’m happy to help. And Brett’s happy to have a review in to the magazine on time. Another part of the marketing puzzle is complete.
In fact, he’s so happy he sends me one of my favorite drives as a thank you. A welcome and unexpected gesture. Check out the article titled “Cinematographer takes ioSafe Rugged Portable to Extremes“
That’s all it takes to convince a potential client, who wants to hire me to produce and film a cooking show. This potential customer has known me for a long time – I’ve created many photographs for them over the years. “But can you shoot video?” was the question.
“National Geographic has aired my footage.” I say. That was the end of that discussion. What’s the point you ask? Anytime someone else says that your work is excellent, it’s worth more than you making that statement yourself. That can be as involved as getting a client to allow you to film a customer testimonial or as simple as telling people who your clients are.
If I tell you that my footage has aired on National Geographic, that I’ve photographed for Mars (the candy company), Harper’s Bazar has published my work, and that I have won international awards for my photography and video work ect. what image comes to your mind?
Compare that with a photographer who’s shot a photo for his aunt, filmed a video for Bob’s bagel barn and the PTA flyer of his school featured his work.
Strive to get your work out there. Look for opportunities that have name recognition – like National Geographic – to bolster your brands reputation. Having a list of household names as clients that you can rattle off, is often worth more than the money you make on the specific shoot. Sometimes it’s exactly those opportunities that call for you working for free or at cost (for the record, I got paid for NatGeo – which makes it even better). Many of these chances come from having an extensive network of people that you work hard to build. This is not a difficult task, but it takes a lot of time and determination to network and keep up these relationships.
Ask for screen credit during your negotiations and don’t be afraid to take a smaller dollar amount, if you can get your name on the piece. My footage has also been used by the BBC and NPR. I’ve also filmed for the Associated Press and CNN (ok so the CNN was a few seconds of B-roll, I shot with a buddy of mine and I wouldn’t use that to apply as a camera man for a news network, but it give my corporate clients a feel for the quality of my work. After all, if I’ve shot for National Geographic, I’m definitely good enough to shoot for my commercial client.)
Next time you get asked to film, photograph, produce or create something at cost or for free, don’t dismiss it outright. Take the time to see how it benefits your network and how you can raise the name recognition of your brand.