Skip to main content

Digital Marketing

How I got my small business marketing wrong (Part 2)

By Digital Marketing

When Small Business Marketing Goes Wrong!

As any business owner or director will confess that much of what we encounter in the daily working life requires a degree of adaptation and the ability to learn as we go. This is especially true in the case of small business marketing, and as I’ve explained before, this has caught me out on several occasions. But what happens when we get it right? When all the efforts we put into marketing our businesses pay off?

This is a short account of how we got our small business marketing right and also how this nearly caused us a problem that threatened to send the company into meltdown.

Firstly I should start by noting that if you ever wanted proof of the importance of digital marketing then this story should be testament to its power and effectiveness.

As video marketing experts it goes without saying that we employ video as a significant part of our marketing strategy. However we also have a robust marketing mix and utilise a wide range of ways to bring new clients to our door. In early 2013 we embarked on an ongoing campaign to attract as much new business as we could. We used a diverse spread of digital marketing techniques and allocated time and resources to the campaign on a monthly basis.

small business marketing

Small business marketing

We understood from the outset that successful small business marketing requires a slow burn effect and I’d therefore committed us to the campaign indefinitely. Right from the start our online visibility increased significantly due to initial SEO activity on our site, as well as our blogging and newly updated social media pages.

New customers slowly started to appear and we retained ones we already had (hopefully thanks to the quality of our service!). We stuck to our marketing plan and regularly updated our site, we blogged, posted video and also employed more traditional methods such as face to face and telephone marketing.

I should mention here that after 15 years of running a successful company, I possessed a degree of scepticism about the volume of new business we would attract. This led me to take an organic approach to growing our staff and my intention was to increase our core personnel once I’d seen a steady increase in business.

Demand For New Video Content

However what had initially been a steady trickle of new business quickly turned into a tidal wave with multiple new enquiries landing in my inbox daily and existing customers increasing their demand for new video content. The demand created by our digital marketing campaign had gone from a gentle start to an overwhelming surge in a short space of time.

As with many sectors, recruitment in video production is a lengthy process and because this surge in trade demanded all of my time to manage, I simply couldn’t find time to bring more helping hands on board.

small business marketing

This started a process where the business very nearly spiralled out of control, as our volume of work increased to the point where we couldn’t upscale to meet the demand. We were working literally day and night 7 days a week for a six-month period just trying to keep our heads above water.

To be fair, as business problems go this isn’t necessarily the worst, and it’s always better to have too much work than not enough. But the danger we faced was that the quality of our work would suffer as a result of running way above our natural capacity for an extended period of time.

Digital Marketing Does Work

The mistake I had made was to implement a robust digital marketing strategy but not put in place an internal growth strategy to ensure we could meet any new demand created. As a business we got close to meltdown through this period and ultimately the growth in sales we achieved could have all been for nothing if we had lost both existing and newly won clients by not providing the quality control aspect of our service due to stretched resources.

So there are really two messages to this story.

Firstly, yes, digital marketing does work. Very well!

But secondly, if as a business owner or director you commit to a robust digital marketing strategy you also need to commit in turn to a well-timed and considered process of increasing your resources to meet the increased demand you desire.

To find out more about us and our services, please click here.

5 reasons why video marketing and website videos can drive sales

By Digital Marketing

Website Videos – Why are they so powerful?

At the end of the day all businesses need to drive sales. They need to retain existing customers and engage and attract new ones. However (and as we all know), successfully achieving this is no mean feat. Here are a few key factors on why website videos have had such a great impact on driving sales.

1- Customers Trust Video

Even though customers acknowledge that all sorts of digital trickery can be achieved with video today they still implicitly trust video and in particular website videos. That’s because video is able to display raw emotion from real people.

Humans depend on emotions to make decisions, and this is especially true of purchasing decisions. Video and video marketing are without doubt the most effective way to convey emotion to your customers.

2- Customers Can See You

Wouldn’t every business love to have a one-to-one with each and every potential customer in the world? Businesses and brands can use video to form a connection with the viewer instantly, it enables them to look customers in the eye and say, “this is who we are, and this is what we believe”.

The power of what we see is so strong that if we experience a positive emotion from what we hold in our eyes then we also form a bond with what it is we are seeing.

website videos

3 – Google Loves Video

Fact: if you have website videos you will instantly have an advantage over any of your competitors who do not. It’s that simple. Google ranks like for like sites much higher if they feature video and customers will also spend much longer on your site.

Having video on your site will not only make it easier for customers to find you on Google, it will also make them more likely to actually click on the Google link (especially if the customer has searched specifically for video about their chosen search term.

4- Video Strengthens Your Message

Website Videos are at their most powerful when they ‘show and tell’ effectively. A well-produced video can use footage, graphics or stills to highlight a product or service, while a voiceover or commentary can highlight the benefits it provides. This fusion of visual and audible information happens in seconds and provides your customer with a much more compelling reason to give you a call that words or even pictures alone can ever do.

Nobody really wants to read pages and pages of text, but YouTube has taught us that everyone wants to watch video.

website videos

5- Your Customers Want to Consume Video

People today may interact with a brand’s video at any time of the day, especially if your target market includes international clients who may be in a radically different time zone. Gone are the days of videos needing to be scheduled into expensive TV advertising slots – video is now available online and on-demand.

Your new customer could have encountered your video marketing on their tablet or smart phone during their commute to work, over lunch, or in the middle of the night. Any website now that doesn’t feature video always feels a little flat or lifeless, and also gives the impression of being somewhat dated. Online traffic records reflect this: customers tend to gravitate to sites that include online video.

So there you have it: five simple reasons why video marketing is an invaluable tool for your campaign.

And if you’re a business-to-business brand then now is the time to steal a march on your competition! Despite all these great reasons to use online video marketing I’ve just outlined, at the moment only 24% of B2B companies are actually doing this, so getting ahead of the curve now will be hugely beneficial.

To find out more about us and our services, please click here.

How can I make my corporate video web friendly?

By Digital Marketing

Harness The Power Of YouTube For Business

Maximising the impact of your video marketing and making your corporate video web friendly is crucial to realising its full potential. The easier it is to find, view and share, the better your chances of it creating impact and allowing you to grow sales or awareness.

So here are a few tips on where exactly to place your video marketing and get the most out of your corporate video web marketing.

Embed or Host?

In terms of where your video lives online there are two options. The video can either live on your website and server and play out directly from your website, or you can embed the video on your site while it is hosted on either Youtube or Vimeo.

If you host the video on your own website then you have the advantage of immediately benefitting from the traffic it directs to your site, and you also have control over exactly where the video is seen. However there are a couple of downsides. Firstly the viewer’s ability to play the video depends directly on what playback software you’ve built into your own website. Customers access content on such a wide array of devices today so ensuring that a self hosted video can play back on everyone’s device or computer can be a challenge. You may even need to spend money making it available on mobile devices. So much thought goes into presenting a positive image of your business during the video, but someone wants to watch your content on an iPad and it won’t even play, straight away a negative image is presented.

That’s one of the key reasons many businesses choose to harness the power of the enormously capable playback software on Youtube and Vimeo. By uploading your video to these sites and then embedding the video on your website you effectively hijack the playback capability of these hugely powerful sites. That means your video will be immediately playable on pretty much any device out there.

corporate video web

How to Embed a Video

If the concept of embedding is new to you then let’s briefly explain how it works. Once you’ve uploaded your video to Youtube for example, a small piece of code can automatically be generated. This code can then be pasted into your website page (you may need your web guru for this part though) and the video can then be played on your site. The viewer need never know where the actual file is hosted and to be honest, they won’t care. What they WILL care about is not being able to play your video, so using Youtube in this way is our suggested route for online video marketing.

Now, even though your video is embedded in your site, you’ll want to maximise its reach and discoverability to attract new customers to your brand. After all, Youtube is the worlds second biggest search engine, so capitalising on this is vital.

Correctly tagging, titling and describing your video on Youtube and other places your video lives is important to ensuring that people can initially find your video, and then use it to click through to your website (after all, there’s no point in them engaging with your video if that’s where the story ends. We need them to be able to get to your site easily so that this engagement can develop further.

Giving the Upload a Title

As you upload, Youtube and Vimeo allow you to title your film. Use a title that will grab the attention of a search engine rather than a simple description of the film. A title that is a questions works well in attracting viewers.


Add lots of tags to your film (you can do this when uploading). Separate all the tags with a comma and ensure you include key search words from your sector AND also your URL as a tag.

Film Description

The most important element of adding the description to your film is ensuring you include your URL. This is the key area for helping drive traffic using your corporate video web presence so its essential that you include this.

Finally regardless of whether you embed or not ensure that you upload each of your films to multiple sites rather than sharing one upload across all your social media pages. For example rather than uploading to Youtube then sharing the Youtube link on Facebook etc, do multiple uploads of the same film to ensure that a standalone copy of it exists on all social media platforms. We suggest uploading to YouTube, Vimeo, Facebook (and also Pinterest).

This way you’ll make you corporate video web friendly and and in turn maximise the inbound traffic to your own website.

To find out more about us and our services, please click here.

How John Lewis won our hearts with video and viral advertising 

By Digital Marketing

Article originally written in December 2014

Changing perceptions with video marketing and viral advertising.

OK, let’s be frank here. Very few businesses have the budget that John Lewis does to chuck at video marketing and viral advertising. There, we’ve said it.

However, the way in which John Lewis has used its video to drive sales is a good case study example and actually there’s a lot that we can take away from it to help ourselves.

Arguably John Lewis’ greatest successes with online video have been their Christmas TV advertising campaigns, which have almost become as big as the brand itself. For the past few years they’ve tugged on our heartstrings and made us feel all warm inside with these highly anticipated adverts, usually featuring a child, a present, and a small cute creature (you choose).

viral advertising

By tapping into our seasonal goodwill and desire for traditional warmth and togetherness, John Lewis brings out our collective emotions in a way that forms a long lasting bond. We all know the saying “a dog is for life not just Christmas” but you could also apply the same rule to John Lewis adverts. Yes, they will probably appear in any end-of-year ‘Best Adverts Of 2015 Compilation’ type of programme, but more importantly they have successfully established the brand in our hearts and created powerful emotional connections with us that will far outlast the festive season.

Cast your mind back a few years to a time before the advent of the retail chain Christmas advert and viral advertising war. What was your perception of the John Lewis brand? I bet you a cuddly penguin that you didn’t perceive the brand as being current, warm, clever or thoughtful. In fact I’d be surprised if you had any firm opinions about John Lewis at all. For a few years it seemed that they were losing business to retailers that displayed a little more brand personality.

Now that’s not to say that they’ve come from obscurity and transformed themselves into the rock ‘n’ roll king of department stores, and that’s not what we want from them. They have however become a brand that everyone not only knows and gets talking about every year, but has an opinion of as well. For the most part this is due to the impact of the Christmas advertising campaigns combined with skilful viral advertising and their effect on us collectively. They are a brand that is now firmly on our radar, which is exactly what they intended.

The power of video to control our emotions in this way is something that, with creativity and determination, any and every brand, business and organisation, whatever its size, can harness.

To find out more about us and our services, please click here.


SEO So What? What Are The Real Costs On Video Marketing?

By Corporate Video Production, Digital Marketing

How To Balance Message With Production Quality

Ok, so lets talk money. When it comes to producing video your budget is going to be the key factor in how good the final product is. Yes, there are fairy stories about films produced by companies shot on a mobile phone going “viral” and getting millions of views. And you may also be told that it’s all about being creative on limited budgets. But lets be honest, how many videos went viral this year? Can you name them? The truth is that only a handful (and we’re talking single figures here) of videos “go viral” so if that is part of your video marketing plan then you should be realistic about what you will actually achieve.

Search Engines Love SEO

There is also a school of thought that says “any video marketing content is good for your business” and that by simply having any video content on your site is a positive force due to its effect on SEO (search engine optimisation). If you’re not too familiar with this then let me break it down a little. Search engines LOVE video. There’s a much better chance of your company getting to the top of the search pages if you have video content on your website and on your social media pages (Youtube etc). This led to many SEO experts advising that “even video shot on your mobile phone” would have a positive effect on your business.

You’ve probably seen “video blogs” or “company welcome” videos on corporate websites that companies have shot with low production values in the hope that just having “any video content” would be a step in the right direction.

The approach assumes that viewers don’t expect high production quality from some corporate video and that the low budget “blog” type films are actually an endearing and honest way to engage them.


How Important is Production?

The idea being that as long as there is actual content being delivered (eg, advice, tips, news) then the picture, sound and production quality is not important. This is plain wrong and makes a dangerous assumption about what customers expect and demand from a business or organisation.

Let me give you an example. This was a real conversation that actually happened.

Business – “We’ve shot a 30 minute intro film for our business to help us increase SEO. Our internet marketing advisor said that having a long film on our site would be great for helping search engines find us and new customers engage with our brand. We were advised that quality wasn’t important as a search engine couldn’t distinguish between a professionally produced film and one we shot ourselves”

I need to re-iterate that this was actually a real conversation! A company actually did this! Yes, really. I’m guessing that no one (apart form the business owners) ever watched the whole thing.

There are many things wrong with this approach.

First Brand Experience

One of the most important things to remember when producing online video is that it will most probably be viewed be someone experiencing your brand for the first time. That’s a good thing. New customers are what this is all about.

But the power of online video is such that it’s not a static element. If you’ve marketed the video well then you’ll have probably placed a copy on YouTube, Facebook, Vimeo, and twitter etc to maximise it’s distribution.

This means that your new customer may only ever experience and view your film out of the context of your website. It may be embedded in a Youtube share, or linked to on twitter. Therefore it wont be surrounded by the rest of your website as backup to its own presentation strengths and branding quality.

So if you’ve intended to create content with low production quality in the hope that the surrounding website will add the extra polish that you’d normally associate with your brand then you may have made a mistake.


All the Viewer Will See Is The Video

When the content is embedded, shared, or linked to by social media in many cases all that the viewer will see is the video itself. Every initial impression, assumption and conclusion they have about you will be developed from viewing the video alone. That’s why every element of the video you produce should have the polish and quality you expect from all the other elements in your marketing toolbox.

Lets imagine that you’ve produced a film that doesn’t really capture your usual quality or brand ethos but you decide to put it online anyway to help drive those all important search stats. If this works then your company may rise up the search pages and generate more visits. Great. But the top hit I the search traffic may be this video so all the new customers generated will all land on your less than ideal video. If the video then creates the impression that your brand values aren’t that high then the net result of the whole exercise will be making a negative impression on more people!

To argue that it’s all about delivering content NOT production quality is counterproductive. If I need to give a potential customer my business address then the quality of information I am about to give them relies on me accurately passing them my address. However I don’t hand write my business cards in the belief that as long as the information or content is correct (ie my address is spelt correctly) then the quality of the delivery mechanism (ie – a hand written business card) is not important. We all know the truth here.

Communicate Strength of Brand

As businesses we spend time and money ensuring that our marketing communicates the strength of our brand and the quality we deliver. Every aspect of the way in which we present ourselves will add to the way in which new customers perceive our business and the trust they have in what we offer.

If you really think that you can output low quality marketing items in the belief that “its better than having none at all” then take a look at some of the most successful companies in the world today – Apple, Samsung, VW. Everything you expect from these companies products can be seen in the way they present their online video. But, hey! I hear you say, “these companies have millions to spend on production and my company doesn’t!”. Well yes, you’re right. These companies will spend serious amounts of cash in order to present high quality video production values. But here’s an example of SME client that we recently produced video for who had a modest budget but a clear understanding of the quality they required and the importance of presenting every aspect of their brand in the best possible way to new customers.

If you would like to read more about how to boost your production quality, read our article about grip. If you’d like some quality SEO advice for your business then we’d recommend our own guru Mr Ben Read.

To find out more about us and our services, please click here.

Can a video marketing company help my business?

By Digital Marketing

A Look at The Power of Video Marketing

As a busy video marketing company we know full well that the most common use for a video produced by a business is that of the promotional video. Let’s face it, at the end of the day we all want to drive sales of our product or service. That’s why we come into work each day and that’s why we produce videos for business – to help them increase sales.

The Customers’ Choice

Customers today are choosing the way and the terms in which they engage with our businesses. They are the ones choosing to press play on the video window that pops up on our home page or YouTube. They are the ones clicking share or comment on our videos. So it’s crucial that we create video content that will engage them and encourage this engagement with our brand.

Let me ask you a question, how many times have you visited a website which has a video as part of its front page? Now, when you first land on the page what do you do? Do you instantly start to read the copy? Do you search for a photo gallery? Or do you click play on the video. I’m guessing that 9 times out of 10 you’ve clicked play!

Why We Watch Video

Well, lets face it, watching a video is a lot easier than reading a page of boring product copy! It’s more convenient and relaxing and it’s also a process that we are naturally at ease with. We’ve grown up watching TV, VHS video and recently DVDs and BluRay so effortlessly absorbing and interpreting information delivered via moving screen image is an acquired skillset that we don’t even give a second thought to.

Watching video feels natural and most importantly, we feel in control. We have the power to press stop or pause. When considering video marketing this is a crucial element as the process becomes much more of a partnership in that the vendor produces content and the customer is empowered to either experience that content or to ignore it. It’s this single required customer action (ie pressing play) that helps to create a bond between the brand and the viewer.

video marketing company

Endorsing Your Brand

It’s like producing a poster to promote your product and allowing the customer the option of either putting the poster up themselves, or simply ignoring it. If they choose to put the poster up then they have effectively endorsed your brand and announced their approval to all their peers.

If a customer shares or comments on your video then in a similar way they’ve essentially endorsed your company and signalled to others that “this is a brand that I want to freely engage with.

It’s these elements that gives video marketing its power whether you produce you video in house or engage a video marketing company. Good content helps all brands build a lasting relationship with customers.

When this happens the brand has achieved something much more positive and lasting than good old fashioned marketing comms and advertising. They’ve actually achieved audience and customer engagement and started a relationship that will ultimately drive sales.

This is the power of video marketing and why promotional video in all its guises is one of the most essential tools a business can have to increase its customer base.

To find out more about us and our services, please click here.

Video Marketing – What are the Social Media Basics?

By Digital Marketing

A Guide To Producing Video Marketing For Social Media

Using social media, video marketing and viral marketing videos to increase your brands visibility and customer engagement is a vital part of any marketing activity. It engages the customer in friendly territory and creates a powerful bond if done correctly.

If you have, or are planning on producing a promotional video or video marketing content then social media is a persuasive and engaging platform for you to connect with new customers.

However many companies and organisations still drop the ball in this area and make small mistakes that render such activity much less effective. Here some tips on how to easily maximise the use of social media for your video marketing. Firstly we’re assuming that you have (or are going to have) some video marketing assets that you want to get front and centre on the social media spectrum.

Drip Feed the Excitement

But before we get into what to do with your video lets step back a little and look at how you can even use social media while your video is being made. If you’re on the actual film shoot with your in-house guys or an external production company then make sure you take a few photos of the shoot and tweet them to generate excitement. If you take a few then don’t use them all at once. Instead drip feed them as single image tweets on social media (twitter) to generate a slow build of expectation. Use hash tags like #behindthescenes #onset etc to help users find and share your photos.

Viral Marketing Videos

Upload & Tag

Once your promotional video is complete then there are several strands to your social media plan.

Firstly upload the video to YouTube, Vimeo and Facebook. Tag it respectively using tags that aren’t too long and are separated with commas.

Then (and this is important) make sure you include your url in the films description. This creates a back-link to your site and helps to generate traffic in the direction you are aiming for.

You can also overlay live clickable links back to your site using youtube but you’ll need to register the content with them first so that they can verify the video is yours.


You should also embed the video straight into your own website. This means that the video sits on either youtube or vimeo but can be played directly through your site. The main benefit being that you don’t need to host the film on your own server and because you are harnessing the power of the youtube and its built in video player. Critically, this ensures that your film can easily be viewed on any computer or device available without any new video payer software being required.

Youtube is obviously the most popular video site out there but you should not overlook Vimeo for embedding the film into your own webiste. Vimeo gives you great insight into how many times people have viewed the embedded film on your site and where they are located in the world allowing you a clear way of measuring the impact of your film.

Tell the World

So now you’ve got copies of your film on Youtube, Facebook, Vimeo and your own website. It’s now time to tell the world about it!

A key mistake that businesses make is to only tweet a link or announcement about their new promotional video once. Many Twitter users may miss your original link if they follow numerous tweeters and so repeat tweeting is essential. Using a scheduler such as Social Sprout helps a great deal here. It’s really easy to use and allows you to load up tweets with links then schedule them to repeat on any given day. You can load up an entire months worth of social media activity and simply let the site do the hard work of spreading the word. It also allows you to send the same message to facebook, linked in and google + so it saves lots of time.

Viral Marketing Videos

Don’t Be Shy

Other social media sites that can be great for maximising your video marketing exposure are Google+ (you’ll be surprise how many people now use it!). Pinterest and of course Linkedin. Don’t be afraid of over saturation as many social media users dip in and out of each platform so the chances of them seeing your message repeated too many times are slim.

Behind the Scenes

Now remember those photos you took on shoot that you tweeted individually? Now is the time to make further use of these by creating a “behind the scenes” gallery (something that people generally love to see). You can upload all the shots to a gallery in facebook, on your own site, or pinterest and include backlinks to the embedded video on your own site. This helps further boost interest once the intial launch has passed.

One thing that I really want to stress is that none of this is either complex or time consuming. All of the actions described above require little technical knowledge and go a long way to making your Viral Marketing Videos work at their maximum potential, giving it every chance of engaging new customers with your brand.

To find out more about us and our services, please click here.

How Long Should My Video Be?

By Digital Marketing, Video Production Advice

A Guide to Viewer Retention

Getting the length (or duration) of your promotional video or video marketing content right is essential to ensuring your target audience actually watch your video in its entirety. Pretty much every time we click play on online video we cast a quick glance to the bottom right of the video window to see what the duration of the video is.

The Importance of the Start

If we’re not fully engaged right from the start and the duration is above 2 minutes there’s a strong chance we will click away before watching just over half of the video. Depending on your product and target demographic this critical window of initial engagement time can get shorter – If you’re targeting under 25’s you’d better get the first 10 seconds of your video marketing bang on or your dead in the water.

Before we look at the figures its worth mentioning that there are several problems caused by viewers not watching a promotional video right to the end.

Firstly we don’t want them to miss any of our key product or service selling points. If a viewer stops half way through they may be missing the piece of information that’s critical to their own purchase decision making process.

Secondly, we don’t want the viewer to miss seeing the CTA- which many videos have as their closing message.

Finally, google ranks sites with videos that have high levels of “completed plays” higher than those with high video click away rates. So if everyone only watched less than half of our video Google will rank it lower in relevant search listings.

The Statistics


So lets look at the stats to see how the length of your promotional video impacts on the average amount of your video that actually gets viewed.

It’s not going to be a massive revelation to most people that shorter videos achieve many more “completed plays” than longer ones. We all lead busy lives and if you’re selling B2B then time is always critical so mainlining your message quickly is the most effective way of ensuring that your entire message is received. If your promotional video is under 2 minutes then nearly 55% of every person who hits play will watch the entire video (this sounds low but its actually a good benchmark to aim for).

If you’re video runs a little longer there is a drop off in these completion stats but its interesting to note that there is not much variation in completed plays whether your video is 3 minutes or 10 minutes in length. Videos with durations between 3 and 10 mins achieve an average of 37% completed plays. So if you’re video is going to be over 2 minutes, don’t worry if it ends up being 4 or 5 mins as the stats over the 2 min mark are similar.

However if you need to present a much longer video of over 10 minutes then the drop off rate is steep with an average of just 27% of viewers reaching the final frame of your video.

Obviously some video productions require a longer duration due to the nature of the content and the messaging required. If this is the case then load the key information in the early part of your video to ensure you deliver your key messages before the viewer can click away. A good idea is to have a CTA that appears either throughout the video (in the form of voiceover or text) or to keep repeating the CTA at intervals throughout the video.


Think about your video in the way a newsreader would present the news. Start with the main headlines in brief. This ensures you deliver a quick overview of your key values and selling points from the outset.

You can elaborate on the detail of these key points in the remainder of your video knowing that you’ve delivered punch and impact at the start. This will not only help encourage viewer completed plays but will ensure that you have delivered the guts of your message to any viewers who do click away.

So what can we takeaway from these stats. Well obviously the main point is to be brief. Shorter promotional videos engage viewers and keep them watching. If you’re video marketing content is under 1 minute then it will achieve more than 200% the amount of completed plays than a 10 minute+ version would. Impact is key so strong messages clearly and quickly delivered will produce a powerful video marketing asset and help drive those sales.

To find out more about us and our services, please click here.

Should You Hire a Marketing Expert?

By Digital Marketing

Marketing Experts from a Business Owner’s Point of View

There are a myriad of different marketing experts available to businesses today. A quick glance online will find every Tom, Dick and Harriet offering their services as a “marketing expert” or “consultant” and even traditional graphic design agencies now present themselves as “marketing solution agencies” such is the power and demand for this service and expertise. But often business owners (and I’m talking about myself here) are reluctant to hire external marketing experts. There’s often a believe that much of the skill base required can be found (or developed) in themselves, or internally within their organisation.

My Experience

Personally I had the view for many years that “no one knew my business or customers as well as me” and “if I can grow a business form scratch I can certainly keep it growing”. However sadly, I was wrong.

Now I need to be clear at this stage that I have nothing to gain for banging the drum of any particular approach (whether you do this internally or engage the services of an external expert). This is simply an unbiased view based on what happened to my business when I hired an external marketing consultant.

As a business owner, director or manager there will always be a certain level of creativity, drive, and ambition that has been required in getting to where we are today. As a business owner myself these attributes can sometimes manifest themselves as a “can do” or ” anything is possible” attitude. These are strong (and essential) traits that are essential to success but they can also sometime generate a barrier to seeking external expertise for specific tasks.

Now let’s be honest. Anyone could spend time researching, developing and realising the best way to market their business. Successful marketing is not some dark art, or something that only a gifted few can bestow. Given time we could all become half decent marketeers and develop an effective campaign. But this is time spent not doing the actual things that make the business money. It’s time that we should be spending focusing on the core of our businesses and spending it on marketing would pull us away from the many of the day to day essentials.

So hiring an external marketing expert is worth considering. Its something that we have done successfully over the past year and we have seen significant benefits and our business has grown as a direct result.


Finding & Hiring External Consultants

We’ve learned a lot about the process of finding and hiring external marketing consultants so here’s a summary of what has worked for us:

Marketing experts come in many forms but the majority focus currently on digital marketing rather than traditional media.

Digital marketing experts can be useful to help you plan and deliver a google PPC campaign, increase natural traffic to your website (SEO), make your website a better user experience, identify new opportunities and a whole host of other areas.

Now not all digital marketing experts are created equal and many will specialise in one or two of these services. Some will also specialise in specific sectors. It’s also worth mentioning that some will specialise in billing you way too much so by all means don’t get into bed with the first one you come across.

The key is to shop around and talk to lots of people before making a decision.

You’ll probably have an inbox that’s constantly bombarded with emails from companies and individuals promising you the world if you pay them for their marketing advice so selecting the right person or organisation for you can be a challenge.

Here’s a few other things that you should keep in mind:

Decide exactly what you want to achieve

Having a goal or firm idea of what you want your forthcoming marketing activity to do is critical to finding the right person to help you achieve that goal.

Don’t rush

Again, as a business owner I’m impatient, I want to drive things forward and push projects into realisation pas viagra. But allowing time to do your research is key.


Talk to lots of marketing experts

This will give you a feel for who you think can understand you and your clients. Have a look at their track record but also allow yourself to be guided by your gut a little. You will need someone who you can work with so understanding and empathy is pretty important.

Don’t be scared it’ll cost £000s

We have marketing consultants who work for us on a short term basis for fees in the low £100s. Many marketing consultants can negotiate individual packages to suit you so don’t be put of by thinking that you’ll need to spend truckloads just to get anywhere.

Be open to new ideas

The worst thing you could do was pay an expert for insight and advice only to ignore it all because it’s suggesting something that’s new or untried for your business. Trust in their research and expertise

Hiring a digital marketing expert was one of the better moves I’ve made in my 16 years of running a business and allows me to focus on the core whilst still driving the brand out to new customers and opportunities in ways that are innovative and accurate.

So there you are, take it or leave it. As mentioned I’m not here to sell you anything. I’m simply sharing our experience in the hope that it may be useful in driving your own business forward.

To find out more about us and our services, please click here.

Why is digital video marketing for business so powerful?

By Digital Marketing

Digital Video Marketing.

Video for business has grown into a crucial part of any company’s tool kit. Video marketing adds an extra layer of excitement to any marketing campaign and engages the customer or viewer on their own terms and often, in their own homes. But why has video for business become so powerful and persuasive. To examine this we need to look at the different generations that form the internet age and why they have been the ones who have driven this movement.

Customer Driven

Its quite a bold statement but we should accept that the strength of digital video marketing stems form the fact that the viewers (or customers) have a key part to play in the conversation and have essentially dictated the terms of how they would like to engage with us as businesses or organisations.

The rise of video marketing is not a product of a forward thinking cool marketing agency or the child of a heavy weight corporation. Instead it’s a truly customer led format that lives or dies based on their demands. It’s here that its power essentially stems from.

digital video marketing

History of Video Marketing

Online video took a long time to arrive in its current format. The initial incarnation of the web as we know it wasn’t able to deliver video in the way that matched our appetite for it. Viewers wanted quick, easily accessible bite-size information delivered in videos that were of high quality.

The web simply wasn’t upto this. Digital video marketing couldn’t be delivered to mass audiences due to restrictive bandwidth and data charges that made streaming far too expensive for most companies. However the advent of dedicated video delivery sites such as youtube changed this forever.

The poor user experiences that we’d previously had with online video are now a thing of the past and the days of waiting an hour to stream the spiderman trailer at a screen resolution the size of a postage stamp are thankfully long gone.

Give It Time

However what’s interesting is that users didn’t abandon their desire to frequently watch online video during these early teething troubles. No one was put off to such a degree that the medium was dead in the water and we were prepared to give it time. Our desire to consume information via web video was so strong that we waited and waited until finally it was fit for purpose, and then, we jumped in head first.

Many internet and social media users are from the original TV generation and recent users are born with an ability to quickly and efficiently consume, interpret, filter and judge video content in a matter of seconds.

digital video marketing

Customer Engagement

Today users will either engage with video content or switch off very quickly and it’s this personal selection that makes the bond with what they DO decide to watch a powerful one. The online video experience seems like the most natural way to watch content and the advances in streaming to tablets and phones only strengthen our belief in the medium.

It’s this belief that makes video for business the perfect way to engage in conversation with customers. I use the word conversation because the viewing experience is anything but passive and the viewer has made several decisions before watching your video content that help us understand why the medium has such power.

The business world is now in a fully fledged romance with online video and it will be interesting to observe where we go from here. One thing is certain and that is that the future of online video for business looks bright and mutually rewarding for both business and customer.

To find out more about us and our services, please click here.