Video or Bust

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There’s a lot of talk about video in marketing today. Infomercials for the soul, or not for the soul…which is it? I don’t think theres a debate about whether we are short on time or not. We are catapulted into the future with so many channels to tend, we want the easiest way. . . gotcha. But is video the way?


Back in 2001 I was developing the designs for a start up, Quious, the first messaging company planting their roots in SF, from Germany. At the time, I was focused on the engineering of this 150 desk project, rather than what they were selling. The concept of writing everything into a phone seemed so foreign to me, that frankly I wondered if it would ever take off. But here I am years later.. thumb’s a blazing. Who could have guessed? Will video presentations, across all channels, take over in the same way?

These days it’s not enough to post on instagram, set up live stories, use various apps to effect an image or add type, but there are a multitude of other sites like Pinterest, Houzz, Facebook, and heaven forbid: working on one’s own website, to take care of. Along with all that, we have the task of learning to be the producer, actor and writer of a conveyed message, on live tv! What are the ins and outs of this idea? I think about this often these days. It’s come down to one big question for me: What do you want to say and how easily can you say it?

If I could come back to the ‘video infomercial age’, from the future, I would like to know where we are we being led to. Are we crafting a talent or not? What are we gaining (yes, obvious exposure and quick digestion)but also; what have we lost? Has the written word lost it’s sizzle?

Whether I am personable on camera or not, I must learn to be authentic in front of one, if I get on this video train, right? Whether I like to put concealer under my eyes or not, it looks better, so I do. Whether I would rather hang out in my pajamas or not, I dress like I’m going to town. Not for my client, but for my phone date. What do I say, when I click ‘on’? Must I remind my potential clients of their needs before the remedies? Should I identify with the problems my clients are having and be the genie out of the bottle? If you do that a hundred times, will you get back to me. I’m wondering how that works for you. 

What could the future do for us, but make us look older, less likely to want to say ‘Hello Camera!” ….yet the pattern we’ve created of all these cute videos popping up on our social media sites, can not be set aside easily, if we have a change of heart and don’t want to do them anymore. If you stop, people might think you are dead!

So what to do? For me there is only one solution and it’s pretty simple. Whatever I do, I do it for today. If it feels right, then I post. If it doesn’t, maybe I write. If I want to set up a light booth and have the right microphone and chatter away in front of my phone on a tripod, I give it my best. But with one common thread: I do it concisely, and be succinct. If time is of the essence, then the beauty is not necessary in the medium. It’s in all mediums. It’s in the choreography of using few words with the most impact and clarity. When I do this, the future looks brighter. I won’t be stuck with one way of doing things. I can stretch and be a better author and writer and thinker, and tv persona if I want, no matter the day. I won’t be tied to the trends of the time. I will continue to value other people’s time as well as my own, with offering the one best thing: the ease to comprehend! No matter how I choose to do this.