Excess business inventory and pent-up consumer demand will create dynamic market opportunities as the economy reopens. At a time when Americans rely more than ever on technology to work, shop and play, a marketing strategy built around the power of video can deliver an impressive return on investment.
“Effectively positioning your business product or service has never been more important than now,” said Barry Thiessen, owner and producer of ZUMA FILMS in Phoenix. “Everyone is using their TV or mobile device to make purchasing decisions. Having a professional production reflects on the quality of the product or service, so cutting corners is normally a bad strategy.”
Now is an ideal time for businesses to rethink their marketing strategy and media mix. A good place to start is to consider all of the places where members of their target audience engage with video.
“There are almost infinite ways to use video to market,” he said. “Sometimes it’s a traditional TV commercial, and these days they are shorter and need to make an impact in the first five seconds, as with a pre-roll on YouTube, for example. We have helped companies be very successful using testimonials, because someone sharing their own experiences can sometimes be the strongest argument to purchase. We have helped Boost Nutrition and JuicePlus+ tell their stories, and they were very successful.”
ZUMA FILMS, which was founded in 2012, provides comprehensive video and media production services, including commercials, PSAs, web content, original programming, B2B and training or instructional videos, working with both agencies and client-direct.
“We also help with how to use or install a product to the DIY customer, bringing knowledge and satisfaction to the purchase,” Thiessen said. “We have created dozens and dozens of video recipes for Florida Citrus, and they have seen sales improvements, reminding customers of the benefits of citrus fruits or giving them ideas for new ways to use them.”
Video adds synergy to an integrated marketing strategy, where all tactics combine to drive sales. “Videos can easily support written e-marketing (such as emails, texts, etc.) as well as photos and art by way of a link,” Thiessen said. “There are many options to take customers somewhere else after the video as well, so the integration options are many and the experience is enriched.”
The perception that video production is too expensive is as outdated as videotape and VHS players.
“Video now isn’t nearly as expensive as it used to be,” he said. “The cost of equipment and time needed to produce video has gone down greatly. The secret to not wasting money is to make sure you have an experienced and talented team operating the equipment and directing the action.”
As video has become ubiquitous in society, consumers have become more tech-savvy and expect high quality. Although there are numerous ways to make video more affordable, an amateurish production can do more harm than good.
“ZUMA FILMS has experience with all sorts of projects, but the goal is always to create the best possible project to meet the goals of the client,” Thiessen said. “We are plenty happy working with ad agencies, but sometimes the budget isn’t there. Some businesses have the resources to do what an ad agency does — targeting strategy, developing creative to match the goals, writing and matching the concept to a doable budget. Sometimes they don’t. When they don’t, we’ll pick up that slack.”
Kyle Lewis, senior vice president and chief creative officer at The Morrison Agency, appreciates this can-do attitude.
“I’ve worked with Barry on large and small projects many times over the last decade or so,” he said. “It has always been a pleasure. He has the right combination of production skills and great attitude. He is fun to have around on set and makes every attempt to do what’s right for the work. With Barry, you have a trustworthy partner who will bend over backwards to deliver.”
Thiessen, who has more than three decades of production experience and has owned production companies in California and Georgia, is happy to show businesses how to enhance their marketing strategies with video, with no obligation. “My joy is finding solutions and making deadlines, merging great talent with the right tools,” he said.
ZUMA FILMS is a media production company based in Atlanta and Phoenix, with producers in Los Angeles, Atlanta, Phoenix and Orlando. We’re a creative collective– part production company and part creative team, solely focused on the best way to tell a story. We start with core creative thinking, then we mobilize to develop the best possible execution across any platform. As a result, our work spans multiple disciplines and covers all forms of media, including web, commercials, TV, branded content, animation and feature films. It’s about thinking beyond what has been successful in the past and creating a new way to execute effective storytelling to today’s audience.