3 Ways Video Can Build Trust & Meaningful Digital Connections

Trust matters!

In today’s online, social media environment, trust matters more than ever before. Here’s why.

Everyone wants to filter out the BS, the hype, the sales pitches, and the get rich quick schemes. How do you do that? While browsing, you gather “data”—usually very quickly—in order to figure out whether or not you can trust someone. You want to know if they are really going to be of service and whether or not they actually care about offering something (whether service or product) that will truly be valuable to YOU.

This Weeks Power Briefing, 3 Ways Video Can Build Trust & Meaningful Digital Connections

In other words, trust is the “currency” of online/digital engagement. It matters enormously and it is extremely valuable. That’s why I think video is so important as a primary component of your online and social media presence. Nothing builds trust like video. Period.

So, if you are marketing in any way via social media or a website, building trust is crucial. In order to help with that, I made this video to illuminate three ways that you can use video to build trust and meaningful digital connections.

I hope it helps you to market with authenticity and to build meaningful, human relationship via digital media. Or, to be more specific, I’d love to help you build more valuable relationships via online video.

New Service Offer:

The Video Launch Pad 
This is a new service where I help you to learn about how to do video effectively while we create three videos together, and then our ComBridges Digital Engagement Team also helps you distribute your videos on YouTube and the major social media networks. We are trying to make the whole process as easy and powerful as possible for you. Please click here to learn more.

Edited Transcript:

3 Ways Video Can Build Trust & Meaningful Digital Connections

Hi there and welcome. My name is Jon Leland and I’m a Video Marketing Explorer. I really like to get involved with what’s going on with video and how video can enhance our human connections. 

Yes, I play a Digital Marketing Strategist by day but really, what I’m here doing is playing,  experimenting and exploring the dimensions of online video that matter. 

The ones that matter have to do with human connection and build trust. So, that’s why this video is about 3 Ways to Build Trust in Digital Video & online communications. 

Make Marketing Communications More Human

One of them is the most important and that’s making marketing communications (or just communications in general), more human. We do that with this kind of virtual eye contact. Once you make virtual eye contact, someone can experience who you are and what it is you have to offer in a way that print or even photographs can’t do. And because we’re dealing with filtering out the hucksters and the salespeople and the profit-oriented whatever’s, we want to make connection, and we want to give real value. 

Making a “human presence” is number one in terms of building trust.  

Be Consistent

Number two is being consistent, showing up regularly, and I think weekly is probably a minimum requirement. That’s what I’ve been really striving for with these video blog posts, because when you show up consistently, you build trust by being present, by people knowing that they can count on you. 

Cultivate Connection

The third way is really cultivating connection. So, showing up consistently, being human, and authentic are making a real connection. That enables you to build a real community, tribe, client base, or whatever your goal is. That is something I know that shifts the equilibrium of the world – when we make real human connections, cultivate community, especially in ways where we can relate to each other as we do on video… Then something changes. 

That’s what I’m about and that’s why I’m doing all this. I want a better world with more human connections, with real communities, and people who support each other. 

So there’s the three reasons how online video can cultivate trust, and I hope you will consider them as you decide to do your own outreach.

I’m going to follow up next week with more information. I’m going to The Patreon headquarters in San Francisco this weekend. They’re having a gathering about building community online. For those of you who may not know Patreon, Patreon is a crowdfunding way to do subscription support of your content. And I’ll be reporting back on that kind of video community building next week. 

So thanks again for watching. I really appreciate you being here and I’ll see you next week!

The Power of a Creative Practice: Video Blogging Inspiration & Mini-Book Review

For me, Video Blogging is more about the power of a “creative practice,” rather than a profit-driven marketing strategy.

Yes, “by day,” I am a marketing strategist, but more importantly, I’m also an explorer and adventurer who loves (OK, THRIVES!) by discovering new dimensions of the “online video spaces.” In other words, I like to play and expand my creative capacity via social media video in all forms.

Through this new practice, I’m also learning by doing and discovering new dimensions of who I am in the world. If that approach resonates with you at all, then this ​week’s video may be a joyful “kick in the pants.” I hope so!

This Week’s Power Briefing, The Power of A Creative Practice: Video Blogging Inspiration & Mini-Book Review

If you are a creator of any kind, you know the power of sticking to the structure of a creative practice. At Representative Elijah Cummings funeral, I heard his wife Maya say that he often said, “80% of life is just showing up.”

For me, before about 3 months ago, video blogging was a dream of mine, a healthy ambition. Now that I’m doing it and showing up (almost) weekly, my life has changed! This video shares about that process in a way that I hope is inspiring to you.

Are you ready to take action on your creative dreams and put yourself out there in a new way? If so, I’d love to hear more about that from you.

​This video also includes recommendations of two inspirational books that I have found useful (and my offer of support). Here are links to those for your convenience:

Edited Transcript:

The Power of a Creative Practice: Video Blogging Inspiration & Mini-Book Review

Hi and welcome to another video blog post. My name is Jon Leland and I am a Digital Marketing Strategist. I’ve realized something in the process of being creative and that’s what this video blog post is about. It’s about the sheer power of a creative practice and I hope to provide inspiration for anybody in particular that wants to be creative and in particular wants to be creative with video blogging. I also have a mini book review (for you.)

Digital Marketing Strategy is Only My Day Job!

The first thing I want to do is correct myself. I said I’m a Digital Marketing Strategist and that is true, you could call it my day job. I play one here on YouTube, but I also am really more truly an adventurer, somebody who is exploring the digital space around being creative and using in particular video to be creative. Also, I explore communication channels, networking and the power of this thing called the creative practice. 

“Creative Calling” & The Power of Daily/Weekly Practice

The book that I want to recommend to you is called Creative Calling. I think I can even bring it up here on my iPad for you. So this is the cover. It’s by Chase Jarvis. The (sub)title is “Establish a Daily practice, infuse your world with meaning, and succeed and work + life.” 

Chase Jarvis is really quite a remarkable guy and his focus—and my focus in terms of doing these video blogs—is around the practice and the power of what happens when you keep showing up. So the reason that I said that I’m an explorer, an adventurer, even more than what I do for a living, is that that’s where “the juice” is for me. 

I’ve always loved the opportunities and this evolution of digital video. I’ve been talking about it, writing about it, and doing videos about it for many years. But it’s only as I’ve dug in and made it a weekly practice that I found this whole other kind of dimension of myself. And it comes from showing up and it comes from not necessarily knowing what the results are going to be, not necessarily knowing what’s going to happen, and in particular, being willing to move through regardless. 

The Crazy Presumption That We Should “Have It Right,” Be “Perfect,” or Even Know What We Should Say 

Another book I recommend is by Steven Pressfield, who talks about Resistance in the book called The War of Art. (This is) another amazing and important book for the creative professionals or people that want to play creatively.  

By showing up, by being here, by being willing to hear all the voices in my head, resist the “imposter syndrome,” and doing this video blog post anyway, I discover new dimensions of myself. I also get myself out there. There are lots of business benefits but that’s not why I’m doing it. 

I’m doing it because at heart I love learning all the time, I’m learning by doing and by experimenting.

The qualities that you don’t necessarily think about when you think about being online and doing a video blog are things like courage and humility. Because the “impostor syndrome” which is the “crazy uncle in my head” says “You’re not good enough,” “Do you really have anything worthwhile to say?” 

All of that kind of self doubt and self talk, I’m allowing that to be there but not listening to it!

Sharing A Journey of Discovery

I’m showing up, no matter what, to do something every week. That’s a lot of what Chase Jarvis talks about (in his book) and he’s had a lot of success from doing the work. It’s the same thing Steven Pressfield says in The War of Art: Do the work. The professional shows up. Seth Godin talks about the same thing. 

So, here I am showing up, doing the work and recognizing that there is a remarkable power in the creativity of just doing it. By doing these kind of video blog posts and inviting creatives like you (if you’re one of those) to connect with me, I hope to help you to be supported and be inspired. I’ve got all kinds of programs if you’re interested and if would like to be on my email list here’s the URL: go.combridges.com/video-launch-pad. 

The Video Launch Pad is a new offer that I’m experimenting with; but again, I’m doing this to learn and to see what kind of feedback I get, and to put it out there and engage in this kind of creative process. 

So let me know what you think. I’d love to hear your comments and thank you so much for your kind attention. I really appreciate you watching and see you next week! 

Video Blogging: Is It Really Transformational? Where’s the Meaning & the Magic?

Where’s the meaning and the magic behind video blogging?

Are you wondering if a video blogging practice can make a meaningful difference in the world, in your life, and/or in your business?

When I took on the challenge of doing video blogging for ten consecutive weeks, things changed in unexpected ways and the “ripples” of these changes are still emerging. No doubt, these are real changes… Some that I can clearly articulate and even more that I’m still learning about.

Please check out this week’s video to hear more:

This Weeks Power Briefing, Video Blogging? Is it Really Transformational? Where’s the Meaning & the Magic?

Bottom line, video blogging becomes a meaningful practice when it’s done (at minimum) once per week. This video shares some of the ways that I think this happens, or at least the ways that this have happened for me.

Are you ready for the challenge of weekly video blogging? If so, I’d love to hear about your experiences; and if I can help, please let me know.

Edited Transcript:

Hi and welcome to my weekly blog. My name is Jon Leland, I’m a digital marketing strategist and this is my 11th week of video blogging. My question this week is a very serious one: 

Is video blogging video blogging on a weekly basis truly transformational? 

I have to tell you that for me I have experienced an energy shift. Things have truly changed. For one thing, I’m feeling I’m building strength. It’s emerging that I have a practice, that this is something I can do… as imperfectly as I do it. It’s a valid exploration that I truly think is important. 

Where I experience the transformational quality (of doing this) can be compared to the metaphor of dropping a pebble into a pond and there are ripples that go out. I’ve been very touched by the number of comments that I’ve gotten from people who say that they are inspired by what I’m doing. They share that there’s something about what I’m doing with weekly video blogging that inspires them. That’s my ripple effect: making a difference, creating a transformational change (for others).

It’s About The Process

I’m really looking for more but the process itself is important whether or not anything ever happens! It certainly isn’t about getting rich quick or even a big business goal. I am, however, making offers around trying to help people do what I’m doing so stay tuned. And, I’m interested in your input on that. 

What is much more important is the process of doing it week after week, of learning what it is. You know, I’m somebody that has a lot to say. I feel like I have knowledge that I want to share and bring forth into the marketplace, so that the information is useful to others. 

But it isn’t so much about convincing you of the value or trying to sell you something. It really is an exercise in self-expression and I think that’s part of what inspires people. That’s the feedback that I’ve been getting: that just going for it as imperfectly as I do it, the idea is that I’m putting myself out here. Sharing that has created a shift and it isn’t a linear shift. 

A Non-Linear Shift

I like to say that “I open the door and they come in through the window.” So, my business is continuing to be visible through these videos which is obviously a healthy thing for my business but I think the shift comes from the courage and the practice of doing it week after week. 

And doing it in spite of day to day circumstances especially when I don’t know what I want to say. That was the case this week… to be vulnerable about it. 

I took a week off, I finished ten videos which was my initial challenge.  That was my goal and I did need to take a breath so I did. 

And then I wanted to come back with this video but I really didn’t know what I wanted to say. And, in the process of thinking about it, listening and checking out the comments that were happening on the other videos, it occurred to me that I wanted to talk about the fact that doing this is a shift, it’s a real transformation. 

A Challenge for You

So, I want to challenge you to be like “the pebble in the pond” and really start being a “ripple.”

The ripple doesn’t come from thanking me (and I really deeply, authentically appreciate the comments). But I think the real ripples come from when you pick up the camera and when you start expressing whatever it is you have that you feel is valuable. Crafting that, honing it and practicing it and being willing to do it imperfectly. 

That practice itself, for me at least, is truly transformational and I invite you to dive in not just occasionally but with a real weekly practice so that you’re present in the marketplace. You’re consistent, and people know that they can trust you. And more and more, you’re learning to have to articulate how you deliver real value. 

That’s why I think that video blogging is truly transformational especially when it’s done weekly. 

I would love to hear your comments. Thanks again for watching and see you next week!

Vlog Video Production Tips: How I Use my iPhone to Keep Things Simple

It’s been so fun to get myself “over the hump” and start video blogging on a weekly basis.

I’m fascinated by the process and uplifted a whole bunch of results that have followed—from more clarity on my purpose, to increased visibility, to business prosperity.

I’m wondering if you might be someone who wants to get going with video blogging but feels overwhelmed or resistant to facing down the camera and/or all the other stuff that goes with it?

For me, I made progress when, first, I separated video distribution from video production; and then, when I streamlined my video production “system,” I finally became consistent.

This Weeks Power Briefing, Vlog Video Production Tips: How I Use my iPhone to Keep Things Simple

In this week’s video, I summarize my iPhone video production “system” and what I have done to simplify and streamline my vlogging production process. This includes using my iPhone to shoot, a simple wired lav mic for good audio, and AirDrop for file transfer. Click here to watch now.

And, if you are serious about becoming a video blogger (or upping your video blogger “game”), I’d love to help. Very soon, I will be offering a special “Kick-Start” services package. Please contact me if you’re interested in becoming one of the first to try out this package (at special “early bird” savings, of course).

In any case, I’d love to hear what works for you and if you find this video useful. Thanks for watching!

Edited Transcript:

Hi there, my name is Jon Leland, I’m a digital marketing strategist and a video blogger. I am here with episode number 9 of my weekly video blog series about video marketing.

I want to help you be a video blogger (or a better video blogger) and share what’s really worked for me. I talked last week about video blogging as a “superpower,” and about the way I got over the hump by separating out the video production from the video distribution. 

Simpler is Better

The other thing that has really worked for me is simplifying the video production and that’s what I want to offer you today. 

Here are the key components and how I get these videos done in a simple efficient way every week. 

iPhone Video Advantages

I have a number of cameras and I’ve been a video professional for a lot of years. I have a nice digital SLR, a DSLR; and I also have a video camera, an old camcorder. But for these videos, I’m using my iPhone. I have a good iPhone, a 10 XS Max. 

I really like my iPhone because of the video quality. The video quality even using the selfie cam, as I do, is going to be better than I would get, for example, out of my computer’s webcam. That’s the first point. 

The second point is that I do these videos by myself. I don’t have a camera person, so the fact that I can look at the lens and frame it with a nice good-sized selfie cam screen definitely makes things easier.

Tips for Better Audio

Another tip that I want to give you is that for audio. I’m using a very inexpensive $20 lavalier microphone. 

An even bigger audio tip to share is that one of the most important things about audio quality is making the shortest distance possible between your mouth and the microphone. So, even with a better microphone that would sit further away, I probably wouldn’t get the audio presence that I’m able to get out of this Lavalier microphone.  

I also have an extension cord that plugs right into the iPhone so that the audio and video are in sync together. Using a DSLR camera means having to separate out the audio which definitely adds a level of complexity that I would not want. 

I also have a nice camera mount that holds my iPhone on a real tripod. You could put your smartphone anywhere but using the tripod enables me to put it in the same position and thus to do the same kind of setup every week. Consistency in your videos is important. 

Video File Transfer via AirDrop 

The other thing that I get out of the iPhone in particular and from the Apple ecosystem is AirDrop. 

One of the other tasks that goes on when you shoot digitally with another camera is transferring the files. This can take time and of course additional effort. I use AirDrop to just take it from my iPhone and move it over (wirelessly) to my MacBook Pro. 

Create a Video “System” That Works for You

It’s simple, and simple is good. Use whatever works for you. Streamline your system. It doesn’t have to be fancy and expensive; but get a setup that you can do week-after-week to be consistent and make it simple enough and streamlined enough that you get it done week-after-week. 

I hope this has been useful. I look forward to your feedback and comments, thanks again for watching.

And, see you again next week!

Watch to Learn Why WEEKLY Vlogging Is My New SuperPower + Why You Might Want to Join Me.

In just the last two months, video blogging or vlogging has changed my life and my business; and this breakthrough has led me to think of these weekly video posts as a new kind of “SuperPower.” 

As a digital marketing strategist, when I finally found the discipline to “eat my own cooking” and do videos every week, I knew it would be a positive step; but honestly, the results have exceeded these expectations. 

Check out this video, won’t you?

This Weeks Power Briefing, Watch to Learn Why WEEKLY Vlogging Is My New SUperPower + Why You Might Want to Join Me.

In this week’s video, I not only share how this practice is working for me, I unpack why any kind of regular blogging or vlogging is so powerful.

To make this point clear, I call on a quintessential video clip from Seth Godin and Tom Peters that I’ve used for years in my social media marketing workshops.

I also unveil the essence of a new video marketing offer that may help you get over the “hump” to do a weekly vlog yourself, including our system for social media video distribution. The truth is that it was separating the video production from the distribution that made this breakthrough possible!

Links and Videos for Resources Mentioned in this Week’s Edition:

Seth Godin & Tim Peters on Blogging

Thanks for watching! I look forward to your feedback.

Edited Video Transcript:

WEEKLY Vlogging Is My New SuperPower. Here’s Why You Might Want to Join Me.

Hi there, my name is Jon Leland and I’m a digital marketing strategist. And this is episode #8 of my video blog or Vlog Series about digital marketing and in particular about video marketing. I want to talk to you today about vlogging or video blogging and how dramatically it has changed my life and I think potentially even changed my business. 

The Power of Blogging

So, let me explain. First of all, blogging and vlogging are really, really valuable practices, and I’ve been wanting to do a weekly Vlog for years. And, finally, I have gotten myself over the hump and I have started doing it. Like I said, for eight weeks in a row now. And I want to share with you today about the ways that has changed my life and my business.

I’ve known from blogging the way that doing a regular practice, about getting my voice out there and how that changes things. Intuitively, I knew that vlogging was going to do that as well, but it really has done that and much more. 

I will post a video (link above) with Tom Peters and Seth Godin talking about blogging and they talk about how it really doesn’t even matter if anybody is reading it or in the case of a vlog if anybody is watching, 

“Blogging is free, it doesn’t matter if anyone reads it. What matters is the humility that comes from writing it. What matters is the metacognition of thinking about what you’re going to say. How do you explain yourself to the few employees or your cat or whoever is going to look at it? How do you force yourself to describe that in three paragraphs? Why you did something? How do you respond out loud?”  

Seth Godin

Because what happens is in the weekly practice of putting yourself out there, saying something that you intend to be useful and where you’re really trying to deliver some value doing that week after week really shifts something inside you. You’re able to go deeper, you’re able to discover more about what the value is that you want to share and that you want to communicate with other people. 

“I will simply say, my first post was in August of 2004. No single thing in the last 15 years professionally has been more important to my life than blogging.”

Tom Peters

So, your voice emerges and also your putting yourself out there with it. I know it’s going to sound very California, but as I experience it, there is an energy shift that happens by putting yourself out there in that way. 

Weekly Makes All the Difference

The other thing is the fact that I’m doing it weekly. This makes it a practice and gives it this ongoing continuity, such as when you want to learn to play golf or learn to play the piano, whatever. It’s a practice and going to the gym is another really good example. It takes time to build up “the muscle” and when you do it weekly, it has this power. I’ve talked in other videos about “The Power of Consistency”. 

So, when you do it weekly you build up that consistency and you begin to develop “the muscle” and just like going to the gym when you start doing it for awhile week after week, day after day it starts to feel good. 

And I’m proud to be telling you that I’ve made this commitment, I’m doing it every week and it’s  feeling good to me. It’s also getting me out there. I believe it’s making me more attractive and the last point that I want to make is the way it shifted my business. 

In the coming weeks, I’m going to be making an offer to help people get over the hump to do this. My offer will help them create their first three videos as part of a package and then take advantage of the distribution system that I’ve built and how I’m getting these videos out. 

Separating Production from Distribution Made This Possible

This reminds me of Derek Sivers, who founded CD Baby way back in the early days of the Internet. He invented CD Baby because he was a musician and he needed and wanted to sell CD’s. E-commerce hadn’t really been invented yet. He helped invent it and suddenly all these other musicians came to him and wanted help getting their CD’s out. 

Well, I needed video distribution because I wanted to do video blogs and I wanted to get it out. What helped me get over the hump was I separated the tasks for doing this out, separating video production from distribution. I now have a virtual assistant who’s helping me with the distribution.  In fact, we’ve designed a whole system where these videos are not only on YouTube, they are also native on Facebook, native on LinkedIn, native on Instagram TV and all have the subtitles and meta information… wherever you happen to be watching it. 

So video blogging really is a practice worth developing. I hope you can get over the hump and, if you’d like, I can help you do it,. 

However it works for you, and, let’s talk if you want help from me. Let me know because we have a system that can help you distribute and “watch this space” for the offer in coming weeks. 

As always, thanks again for your kind attention, I really appreciate it. See you next week!

3 Requirements for Marketing Success in The Connection Economy + Better Learning Through Acronyms

Change is always challenging, and as you’ve probably noticed, the environment for digital marketing has changed dramatically. I think Seth Godin describes this well with his term: The Connection Economy.

But what does it take to be successful in The Connection Economy? In this short video blog post, I cover 3 key ingredients or “Requirements for Success” in today’s online environment: 👇👇 👇

This Weeks Power Briefing: 3 Requirements for Marketing Success in The Connection Economy + Better Learning Through Acronyms

As a digital marketing strategist, I love to help. And to help you learn, each of the 3 Requirements for Success explained in this video is illustrated with an easy-to-remember acronym. Here’s a quick summary for you:

MTRB = Multi-Touch Relationship Building

AV + C = T means Authentic Value + Consistency = Trust

BWTTS = Be Willing to Try Stuff

Thanks for watching! I look forward to your feedback.

EDITED VIDEO TRANSCRIPT:

The 3 Requirements for Success in the Connection Economy with Better Learning Through Acronym Mania

Hi, my name is Jon Leland and I’m a digital marketing strategist and I’m here with another weekly digital marketing Power Briefing. This week I’m talking about three essential, requirements for success in the Connection Economy. I’m having a little fun with the three connection ingredients or requirements, I’m calling it, “Acronym Mania” because in order to make them more memorable, I’ve got an acronym for each one. 

MTRB = Multi-Touch Relationship Building

The first one is MTRB, MTRB stands for “Multi-Touch Relationship Building.” It’s kind of amazing to me how many people think about marketing in kind of a one-and-done way. Almost like the old days when you would print a brochure and think that your marketing had been done or people carry that forward into websites being produced or oh, I have a Facebook page now I’m doing social media. 

It is not at all like that. It’s multi touches – which can be email, can be Facebook ads, can be social media posts, YouTube videos. Whatever it is you’re doing, do more of it and make it multi-touches because people are not going to do business with you, people are not going to believe you, if you’re only doing one thing every once in a while. 

AV + C = T Authentic Value + Consistency = Trust

And that really leads us to the second acronym which is AV + C = T. So, this one is really near and dear to my heart because AV is “Authentic Value.” Authentic Value is important because if you’re not offering something that really illustrates what it is you have to offer – what you’re authentic true expertise is and why people would want to do business with because you really have something to offer you’re missing out. If so, you’re not really making a difference because you really need to demonstrate first and foremost that Authentic Value. 

Then the second, “C” is Consistency and this has been a big lesson for me. This is number seven of my weekly video series and I have to tell you the consistency of doing it every week, not only makes a difference to the audience and the viewer because you see me, I’m demonstrating multi touches where you see me on a very regular basis. 

This has shifted my own presence and my own kind of confidence. I have stuff to share that I do think is authentically valuable but the weekly consistency at a minimum makes a huge difference. 

And then the bottom line – the kind of the Holy Grail if you will – in the Connection Economy is Trust. So, if you offer Authentic Value on a consistent basis that equals trust and that trust really is a key ingredient of being successful in the Connection Economy.

BWTTS = Be Willing to Try Stuff Experimentation, Play, Creativity, Fun, Originality

Thirdly, and this is kind of the most fun one is BWTTS, and that stands for “Be Willing To Try Stuff.” 

One of my earlier weekly videos was about “Experimentation” and this is the same point again which is that you need to be willing to try stuff, you need to be willing to experiment, play, be creative, be original, but be original in your own way. 

I really like this saying, I think it’s a book title, “Be yourself because everybody else is taken.” And that you know applies to brands as well as to individuals. 

So, when you do a multi-touch approach and lead with authentic value on a consistent basis, you build trust and then when you do that in a playful experimental way and you, then you try things to find out what works, right? Some things do work, some things don’t work and that’s fine. That’s par for the course, you’ve got to be out there playing, be willing to try stuff. 

Those are three big key ingredients that I think may really make a difference if you’re interested in expanding your online visibility. 

As usual, thank you very much for watching. I really appreciate your attention and I look forward to hearing from you, any comments or feedback are more than welcome. Thanks again, see you next week!

Watch & Learn How Video Connection is the Future of Digital Marketing

Making a personal, human connection via video is more than a trend. It’s a MEGA-trend.

Video is also the one essential marketing strategy that you can’t afford to skip. Here’s why:

I believe that authentic relationship-building is at the heart of meaningful marketing. Given that nothing you can do online builds relationship more powerfully than video, video has become absolutely essential. It’s not only the future of digital marketing, it’s digital marketing’s SUPER-POWER!

Please check out the video below to learn more…

This Weeks Power Briefing: Watch & Learn How Video Connection is the Future of DIgital Marketing

Resources Mentioned in this Video: 

  • The Book: Rehumanize Your Business: How Personal Videos Accelerate Sales and Improve Customer Experience: https://amzn.to/2MLKmcr

Thanks for watching!

EDITED VIDEO TRANSCRIPT:

Hi, my name is Jon Leland and I’m a digital marketing strategist. I’m here this week to talk to you about why video connection is really the future of digital marketing. 

Connection & Putting People First

I know that that’s a big claim but if you are not creating video connection with the prospects and people that you’re engaging with online, I really think you’re not only missing the wave of the future, you’re missing the opportunity to make meaningful connections and build meaningful relationships that can support your business in the long term.

I was listening to an audio book this week with Seth Godin and he calls what’s going on with all the changes in the ways we communicate, the “connection economy.” And I think that really is apt because we are now making connections and that’s the currency. 

The currency is not just how good you are with the technology, for example or how much you hustle. It’s really the authentic connections that you make. That’s where the real value, that’s where the important stuff happens and the fuel for the connection economy is humanity. It’s your humanity, it’s my humanity, it’s our ability to relate and engage in a meaningful way. 

So, that reminds me to give you the big mega trend – and I can do it very quickly. When I started doing websites back at the beginning of the web in 1995, people were just doing text and then  the next generation was when people started adding images. And immediately I talked to people to tell them don’t use boring stock images that don’t have a face on them, they want to see your face, they want to know who they’re doing business with. 

Going Beyond the Explainer Video

So, I encouraged people to take photos and have their own picture up there. Well, now that video has become so integral to how we engage online, I think we need our faces just like this, on the website which means that your simple two-minute explainer video, all the popular whiteboard animations really are not doing what needs to happen. 

Which is showing who you are and engaging in a meaningful way. And then it really goes to the next level, I’ve been experimenting with an application called “Bomb Bomb” and I want to offer a resource. This is a book by the people that started that application, “Bomb Bomb”, which is a video strategy where you are creating videos inside emails and people are literally creating thousands and thousands of personalized one-on-one emails. And that’s a whole other subject that I’ll get into. 

Relationships Require Multiple Touches

But the bottom line is not only do you need human video to create real engagement, but relationships as I’ve been talking about in these weekly videos which happen through multiple touches. 

So, multiple touches mean you don’t just do that one explainer video. You just don’t do the kind of that one corporate “who we are” video. You really need to have a conversation and be present in a way that people engage with you and I believe that means a minimum of a once a week frequency. 

And I’ll be honest with you, that’s something that has challenged me for a long time. This is actually video number six for me and I’m now ongoing on a weekly basis because I want to walk my talk and I, more importantly, I want to really create the kind of meaningful engagement that I’m talking about. 

So, video connection is the future of online marketing of digital engagement, of digital marketing, all that good stuff. And I’m hoping that you’re doing it too.

I hope this is inspiring and useful, I look forward to your feedback. And as always, I thank you for your kind attention. I really do appreciate that you’re here and you watch and I thank you for that, see you next week!

Here’s Why Experimentation is An Essential Attitude for Successful Digital Marketing

Please FORGET the old “one-and-done” approach to marketing. 

Today’s digital marketing requires EXPERIMENTATION. 

In this short video, I explain why experimentation is absolutely essential for online success. 

While experimentation can be scary for some people, there’s no other way to learn, no other way to get the value of marketplace feedback, and most importantly, there is no other way to build meaningful relationships online.

This weeks Power Briefing, Here’s Why Experimentation is An Essential Attitude for Successful Digital Marketing

It’s true in life and it’s especially true in marketing: You have to be willing to experiment, to try new things, to take risks, and yes, to make mistakes and “fail.”

It’s what I love about the online world: I am always learning, and I have the opportunity to keep trying (and sometimes succeeding) at creating new relationships. That can actually be fun in this crazy online world.

The video below is my latest effort in that regard. At the end of the day, a life (and a marketing plan) without experimentation would be BORING! ☺️

In my considered opinion, if you’re not experimenting, your chances of long term success are basically nonexistent. What do you think?

EDITED VIDEO TRANSCRIPT:

Hi, my name is Jon Leland and I’m a digital marketing strategist and in this week’s digital marketing Power Briefing, I’m talking about why experimentation is absolutely essential for successful digital marketing. 

As I said before, digital marketing is not a get-rich-quick scheme. And in fact one of the really amazing things about being involved in online marketing and working a strategy when you do it, is that you get real-world feedback. And the only way that you get real-world feedback is to try things and to experiment. So, that’s why experimentation really is essential: it’s very, very powerful.

But the bad news is that it’s not a one-and-done environment just because you’ve got a website upgrade but that doesn’t mean that you have an online presence. 

It takes communications, consistently like this, that’s kind of why I’m doing weekly videos. I want to be here on a regular basis and I want to reach out and create a relationship. So digital marketing is not one and done. Your website doesn’t mean that you’re finished and even having done a Facebook live video doesn’t mean that you’ve done a video marketing campaign. 

The good news is that you get to explore and you get to experiment and you get to find out things. 

Now a lot of people find that kind of experimentation to be scary, there are all these payoffs like I’ve been talking about. What I find and one of the reasons that we’re now doing monthly retainers with clients is we want to get to know their message, we want to get to know their audience and getting to know, as it implies a relationship. It means that there’s a give-and-take, that you do things, you get feedback, you do things, you get feedback, you make mistakes, you correct them, you do things and learn. 

That’s why experimentation is crucial. It’s the only way you learn, it’s the only way that you can discover and have an adventure with it. And most importantly it’s really the only way that you can develop a relationship and see what works, see what connects and find out. 

So I’ll leave you with a quote, “success is not final, failure is not fatal it is the courage to continue that counts.” – Winston Churchill. 

So thank you so much for watching, I really appreciate your kind attention. I look forward to hearing from you and your feedback. I’ll see you again next week!

Create Authentic Connections: Website Video Production Insights

Anyone doing online marketing faces the challenge of how to engage and inform visitors, while also communicating clearly enough that people get the intended message. Without the human face of a home page welcome video, most websites miss a crucial opportunity to engage with authenticity.

At the end of the day, at least in my opinion, there’s no point in digital marketing, if you don’t make an authentic connection with website visitors. Given the fact that website visitors, in general, have the “attention span of a gnat,” the power of video has become paramount. (For more on this, I produced this video in 2010 that’s still relevant: Why Online Video is Now a ‘Must Have’ for Internet Marketing)

Videos Starring You Are Essential

One of the best ways to grab people’s attention is video.  I am fond of reminding people that a video is starring you, has the added advantage of making a virtual human connection that only a human face and voice can deliver. Video does this quickly and in the exact way that brief home page visitor encounters require.

For more on why a human face should be in videos and not just hidden behind a whiteboard animated video, I recommend Wistia’s recent post, Your Business’s Videos Should Include Faces. Here’s Why.

The authenticity of human connection in video is one of the main reasons that I’ve been promoting video for years. I love opportunities that help my clients tell their stories by producing “welcome to my website” videos. Recently, I’ve produced two of these videos for clients. I’m offering them here as examples of how to do this, including some detailed production insights.

Helping an Expert Witness to Testify

Recently, I had the opportunity to work with Mark Levy, a forensic psychiatrist whose firm provides expert testimony for legal matters. His new company website for Forensic Psychiatry Associates Medical Corporation, fpamed.com, needed a new video for its home page. Mark was clear that his earlier “do-it-yourself” effort didn’t represent him in with a professionalism that reflected his services. This collaboration took the form of a low-budget video shoot with my Canon DSLR camera.

As you can see in the video above, Mark is an excellent speaker; however, one issue with his earlier video, was that it ended up being a bit unfocused. Without wanting to toot my own horn too loudly, I was pleased to be able to add value, as a director and performance coach.  I’m not just a cameraman who sets up the camera and records “pretty pictures.”

In this case, I felt more like a “crafter of communications” because I guided Mark in ways that ensured his video had a structure, a beginning, middle and end. Now, he has a website welcome video that includes an engaging and direct welcome message and a call to action at the end.

Beyond YouTube for Online Video Delivery

Another capability that I provided and applied to Mark Levy’s videos was optimizing them for YouTube search. Behind only Google, YouTube is the second biggest search engine in the world. If you aren’t already aware of this fact, let it sink in. Many small businesses consider SEO optimization for their website, but most don’t think about optimizing their YouTube video clips to be found in search. This is a very common mistake and often overlooked by a video novice.

In addition to YouTube for attracting new viewers and potentially new website visitors, for Mark, I also recommended and implemented video hosting on Wistia.com so that when Mark’s video clips are embedded in his own website, they can be customized to match his website’s colors; and, more importantly, so that YouTube doesn’t have the opportunity to “steal” traffic away from Mark by pushing other psychiatrist’s videos to his viewers at the end of his clips.

Bottom line, Mark’s website is his own “owned” virtual real estate. Why let YouTube leverage it for their objectives? Owned media is a thing and we should all maximize this kind of control on our own websites as much as possible.

Wistia’s call-to-action and other integrated features within the video are more robust and attractive than YouTube’s. Because of this, videos look more seamless as they are integrated into websites.

Giving Wistia a try is easy given that their free introductory level includes three videos hosted on their video delivery platform. Beyond that, it’s $99 a month. This pricing may not work for every small business, but I recommend it for companies that have a serious commitment to video marketing. The image to the right is how this video looks embedded in Mark’s home page.

A More Scripted Approach & Cool Piece of Video Tech

I would also like to share a second video client case study. The second home page welcome video that I produced recently was for physical trainer, Adam Hirsch of adamhirsch.net. A significant difference, in this case, was that before the video shoot, Adam and I collaborated on a script.

Truth be told, while Adam is extremely knowledgeable about his expertise with physical training, his expansive perspective of this subject can also result in him being a bit verbose. Because of this, we needed to find a way to help him be more concise, especially given the online environment where, as I mentioned, holding people’s attention is at a premium. By collaborating on a script, we were able to co-create a straightforward and concise description of what Adam offers.  

However, this creates a different challenge. I didn’t expect (nor was there time) for Adam to memorize and deliver this script like a professional actor. So, while Adam’s new home page video was also shot with my Canon DSLR camera, we used a nifty little piece of technology in the form of a small affordable teleprompter that uses an iPhone for the scrolling text.

Another example of how advanced small electronics are becoming, the Parrot Teleprompter costs only $115 (plus shipping) and fits virtually any video camera. I loaded the written script onto my iPhone before the shoot, and used the voice-activated PromptSmartPro ($19.99, free version also available) so that the text scrolled right along with Adam’s pace of delivery. No teleprompter operator required.

Not only was the hardware a small fraction of what it used to cost, personnel costs were also significantly reduced. The use of a teleprompter, when appropriate, has become remarkably accessible!

I believe the result is a clear presentation, well-articulated and precisely-focused in a way that would not have been otherwise possible. Take a look and see what you think.

At Your Service

Bottom line, I approach online marketing as relationship building. The quality of communication, when done well, enables authentic connections to be built via whatever medium is at play and regardless of what technologies are used.

Sure, innovations like Wistia video hosting and the Parrot Teleprompter help make this happen, but there’s no substitute for quality content and that’s what we do.

I believe that the human beings who are such a crucial part of every forward-thinking organization or business needs to be “front and center,” right from that first nano-second that a web visitor spends on your website. After all, if you don’t engage with them in a personal way, right away, you will lose them.

Please let me know if I can help you or your organization. Thanks!

 

Video Invitation to a Breakthrough in Your Video Presence – Playshop Starts Tuesday!

As I explained in my last video and blog post, video via social media is The Next Big Thing and arguably the most powerful digital marketing strategy.

Last year, I also developed an amazing experiential process or practice called “Video Play Experiences™” that I am now bringing to you, no matter where you live, via a four-week Live Video Playshop (one hour of live video interaction per week) that starts next Tuesday, May 2nd. This post, “Social Media Video Marketing: An Experiential Breakthrough” tells the story of how I first developed the Video Play Experiences™.

Now, I want to invite you to The Live Video Playshop. The video below is your personal invitation from me. It explains more (and also shows off my new green screen and teleprompter) 😉

[callout title=”Learn More or Register for the Live Video Playshop” button=”Yes! I want to have a breakthrough.” link=”http://selz.co/4J6WP1r6G” buttoncolor=” blue” target=”_blank”]The Live Video Playshop is a 100% online experience using state-of-the-art interactive video collaboration including educational presentations, 1-to-1 video exercises and group interactions. Please join us.[/callout]