Tag: startups

16Aug

New York Startup Company Testimonial- iCapital Corporate Video

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We love working with startups, and New York’s iCapital Network has been a client of ours for awhile. We’ve watched them grow and now they’re becoming a really big deal in the private equity world. They’re streamlining the whole PE pipeline, and helping investors get involved with an investment class they previously couldn’t access.

Working with startups is always an interesting ride, because the world they live in moves much faster than the typical corporate world. In a startup’s world you have to be nimble, embrace the velocity and frequency of change, and still find the authentic story that will help the startup connect with their audiences. Startups need more than a video production company. They need a partner who knows how to collaborate and craft their ever-changing story.

Here’s what they said about working with us as they’ve grown:

Many thanks for your patience, professionalism, preparation and collaboration over the past few years. Our business is changing every day and you and your team really helped us capture the spirit of our growing start-up!

– Hannah Grove, Chief Marketing Officer

We try to keep a startup or two in our client mix at all times, alongside the larger corporate video production clients and name brands we work with regularly. If your startup needs a great video, contact us at PatrickOrtman, Inc.

13Feb

Working with Startups on Videos

I’ve worked with a bunch of startups. There’s a certain energy and excitement whenever we get to create a video for a startup. Often they’re even more open to creative ideas than a more established company or brand, too. Some of our startup clients have gone on to win awards at events like TechCrunch, been sold to larger companies, or were able to raise additional funding, in part thanks to the creative work we’ve done together. Savvy startups understand the power of video, and the need for high-quality video marketing content.

Yet, working with startups does have downsides. For one thing, unless the startup is Read More »

23Mar

Video Marketing for Startups, Tech-or-Otherwise

Image from the inimitable Robert

Image from the inimitable Robert

My agency has been lucky enough to have created videos for some truly exciting startups- myLanguage, with their Vocre app that won TechCrunch, being one of them. As I’ve worked with startups to tell their stories, I’ve learned a few things. And today I’ll share some of that hard-won knowledge with you.

Production Quality Still Matters

First, your video’s production quality still matters, even if you’re a startup. You cannot expect the public to put your video in context (“Hey! We’re a startup! Cut us some slack!”). People don’t care what your video’s budget was. They don’t care if you had to produce it under tremendous pressure. They’ll just judge the video- and your product/service- like they judge any video marketing. Meaning your competition these days is TV. Does your video look like it could be played on TV?

You Never Know Who Will See It

You never know who’s going to see your video. Yes, it’s important to try and figure out to whom your video should appeal- to figure out your audience. But a lot of the time, despite all the hard work you put in to define your audience, you won’t be able to account for every possibility. It’s in the nature of video marketing that your video will be shared and seen by audiences you may not have expected.

I learned this on our first promo video for Vocre, when the app became so insanely successful that for a few days local news throughout the USA and Canada played clips from our little promo video on the nightly news. Wow! Imagine my surprise, seeing our little video on screens that connected to millions of North Americans. Luckily, we put a lot of love and effort into the video.

Be Realistic With Your Budget

I get approached all the time by startups who tell me they want to shoot in midtown Manhattan or Beverly Hills, and they want 10 actors and 5 locations in their videos. And their budget is $3,000. Seriously, I get these calls and emails almost every day from well-intentioned CMOs and Marketing Managers.

You have to be realistic with your video. If you don’t have $50,000+ to make your promo, you need your video agency to find ways to creatively tell your story, within financial constraints. That’s OK, we do it ALL THE TIME. But… ditch the Cecil B. DeMille, Old-Hollywood ideas. You cannot have a cast of thousands and locations around the world, if you’re on a budget.

Remember, Story Trumps Everything

Here’s the biggest secret of all: even if you’re a well-funded startup willing to spend $100K+ on your video (we love you guys), if your story sucks the video will fail. I always get leery when a company approaches us with a fully-realized script, and “just” wants us to execute their vision. Those projects invariably fail.

No matter your budget, your video’s story is paramount: it has to grab your audience, and get them to take time from their busy day to learn more about you, and possibly even purchase your app/product/service. That’s a tall order.

Even if you’re a super-awesome marketing whiz,  you need a creative agency that truly understands video storytelling. Not merely a video production company. You need a partner who can work with your concepts and ideas, and make them better. Before the cameras start rolling. A partner who can make the most of what you have, budget and resource-wise, and help you come up with a story that truly engages your audience and incites them to take action.


Me-BlogPatrick is the founder of Los Angeles and New York City based PatrickOrtman, Inc., a creative video agency that has won a ton of ADDY and Telly awards, worked with 9 Fortune 500s (and tons of startups), and been featured in The New York Times, Washington Post, Toronto Star, USA Today, and many other print and online publications in the advertising and other industries.

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