Gabriel joins us to talk video strategy: both as a customer service tool for your agency and as a service offering for your clients. Learn how to allocate resources and develop processes to start your own scalable video strategy today.
In this episode of Agency Unfiltered we have Gabriel Marguglio, CEO of Nextiny Marketing. Nextiny is based in Sarasota, Florida. They're a HubSpot Platinum Partner and Wistia's first Platinum Partner in the United States. Gabriel and I talk about video strategy, both as a customer service tool for his agency and as a service offering for his clients. He teaches you where and how to get started with video today including budgeting and allocating resources for your first video service offering that's ready to scale. We then discuss the results a great thoughtful video strategy has driven for Nextiny's customers.
KD: Gabriel, hello.
GM: Hey how are you?
KD: Good man, how you doing?
KD: Obviously today we're talking about video — and that’s a pretty general term, right? I mean there's a lot of different things we can unpack there but maybe the best place to start, how do you approach video, as a means of communicating to and delighting the customers of your agency?
GM: We started with video like two years ago and actually we come from video way before when we were embedding YouTube videos on websites.
We were not intentional about it. We were just putting videos on pages, right? I feel like two years ago we decided, after Brian Halligan said, you need to hire a videographer not a blogger next year, and 50% of your content needs to be video. We were like okay this is serious.
We definitely need to make this happen. And we got into, how can we use video internally first, inside the agency to actually make it an agency effort? Not just like me going crazy.
Or someone just a videographer doing something on the side. So we started using video for internal communication. We started using video for the knowledge base. We started using video, I said, okay rule, if you're gonna take a snapshot and actually explain on an email what the snapshot means and that where do you go next and then what do you do next, then take a video. A simple video one second, like 30 seconds, one minute, and send it in an email so that started the whole team going on a different mentality about video.
It's not about let's create this big production to put up for engagement or branding. Let's use video as a tool, as a tool on an everyday basis. So number one was creating video for communication.
Like customers, potential customers throughout the sales process. Are you going to leave a voicemail? Don't. Create a short video, put it on an email, send it, video voicemail. Then you can track the email, you can track the engagement on the video, you can see the video was forwarded and they watched it 55 times and that's beautiful.
Because you can see how much they really love that piece of content. So it was more about making sure that video was part of the whole agency and not a product, a piece of, something that we sell for $10,000.
KD: Sure. I feel like just in case people aren't bought in on it, which I think they should be. But you said attach a video, send the email, you can track the engagement. Do you, for your team, have any comparison data as to like emails with video voicemails versus those that don't? How stark is the difference?
GM: I love when you start talking about analytics in video, it's kinda weird, sometimes it's like, well, it's not really possible. We've had that conversation for years. Where we have amazing tools, where we can track everything. But then you go down the rabbit hole where it's like, okay that video for that email did this and this video for that landing page does that. So I see analytics for video. Two types of analytics. I see one is that kind of analytics, where it's like, this landing page, now the engagement. We all know that when you put a video on a landing page. I think that the stat is like 86% more conversion rate.
KD: Yeah, drastically higher right?
GM: We see that it doubles the conversions on the landing page so we definitely use video on emails, on landing pages, on websites. And those those analyses are great.
To understand the impact of video on specific things. But then we go the complete opposite. And we say okay, leads that have watched video, turning into customers, close at an 18%. Leads that haven't watched video close at a 6%. So we actually connect the dots between the video views, the lead engagement, nurturing campaigns, and see it from more of a macro view.
To understand the real impact of video on turning leads into customers, which is what we do.
KD: Right. Revenue, right?
GM: Yeah, exactly. So it's beautiful to be able to see that email or that campaign, for the account manager, for the person developing the content so they can keep optimizing over time and iterating. But it's beautiful to be able to see it as a whole effort and say okay, it creates more customers period.
So not that this specific video, but okay, engagement with just our video assets as a whole. And those numbers are real from one of our customers. We're putting together a case study right now.
6% without video, like people that haven't watched video to 18% of the people that watched video, it's amazing.
KD: Yeah, it's crazy. It triples, right?
KD: At the very beginning you mentioned that. At first you were just embedding maybe some YouTubes on websites or something like that. But then you started using like intention or you started leveraging video like intentionally. How would you define intent? How does that change your approach to video? Any tips or tricks for someone looking to get started.
GM: I feel it's all about strategy right like everything else. You can't just write blogs right?
GM: You need to know who you're talking to. You need to what their needs are. Why you have a solution that might resonate with what they need. In the end, it's setting up a strategy. You just don't create videos all the time for no reason at all.
You might have great things to share but if you don't understand who you're talking to, if you don't understand when they're gonna watch this video, where they're gonna watch this video. Is it Facebook, is on the website, is it on an email? So you need to start thinking about that. So strategy needs to understand channel. It needs to understand intent. It needs to understand the goal of the video. There has to be clear goals. I feel like that is key. Are you trying to convert leads? Are you trying to get more engagement? Are you trying to close a customer? It's the video you create as a salesperson, you know, shooting a video voicemail, or maybe you had a exploratory call.
And you want to say hey, it was great. That's a completely different video than a product video right?
KD: Right, absolutely.
GM: Or a video that you want to take someone that's a visitor into a lead. One thing that we've seen through strategy is we've even changed the way we create websites. It used to be that we created the website with the content and then we slapped videos.
Wherever we could. We have 15 videos, let's put them all on the homepage right? Or we have one video let's put it there. Now we have the same way we used to wrap websites around content, videos just another piece of content that needs to be taken into consideration.
So we're building websites around video, right? We just relaunched our website and one thing we realized is that we decided which pieces of content we had to create for these specific pages.
We created all that content, text and video, and then we created the design and the structure and the way the flow around that and it makes so much sense. You get more engagement. In the end it's all about getting, more plays, more engagement, more clicks, more conversions, et cetera et cetera.
One simple thing we did through this is we saw that people were applying for jobs at our company.
Of course we do inbound lead generation and inbound hiring right? So for ourselves, we're constantly hiring, we're constantly interviewing, and we do the whole process in an inbound way. Well we saw that the same website, now with the new website with videos and the new structure and everything, we got like triple the people wanting to work for us.
KD: Oh, no kidding?
GM: Those people coming already to the website but now they were getting a different story. They were getting the full story of who we are, why, and again we are fueled by video, backed by data, and that's who we are.
So now they can see it right? They see the videos they understand why right?
KD: The long and short of it is, rather than having a website in this example, and then finding okay well we have these videos, let's just kinda just put them on right? The cherry on top of the sundae. You're going all the way at the very first step right? The initial planning, your game plan, your mapping. And you're incorporating and building site infrastructure around what videos do we wanna incorporate.
KD: So it's all the way from the start of planning the website build.
GM: And the same way we see analytics as this little thing and then the macro. We see video as different ways to use it as we were talking about. One is let's set up a strategy and make sure that we're intentional about the goal of this video. And then we have the complete opposite, which is, all agencies have a content issue. The content issue is, we need to find the right voice, we need to develop buyer persona, we need to understand the product. And in order to be able to do that you need time, you need to do research. And when you start with an engagement the first thing you need is quick wins right?
Content is a really hard thing to do, create quick wins for. Okay, we just got a new customer, first week, let's schedule a video shoot. And they're like, what do you mean a video shoot? Like you don't even know who. Yeah, just bring a salesperson, your best sales person. Bring your best service person, product person, engineers. Put them in front of the camera. If I send them a spreadsheet. If I send them a cheat sheet. If I send them an email. Give me bullets or send me a blog. They will never do it. They take months to actually respond to those emails. Nobody wants to sit down and write.
You put them in front of the camera and say, tell me the five things you get questions every day. Tell me the questions you get from your prospects every day. Tell me five reasons why your product is amazing and is better than the competitors. If the video's great, we use the video and we also create a blog. If the video's not so great, we use the sound and we use B-roll, and we create a blog. And if nothing is good, we just create a blog. But we're creating content from day one by using video as a tool. So if you're using video as a product, you have to go strategy.
[[ callout.quote ]]
You need to go create goals and everything. You can use it as a communication tool. But you can also use it as a tool to run your business and I feel like that's the power of video. Video is part of absolutely everything.
KD: That's exactly it right? I mean, in your example you were talking about, okay who are we gonna bring in to this video shoot. That's like when you think about video. Okay maybe it's like a recording of like you said a video voicemail or maybe it's like the culture video about who we are.
KD: It goes across the entire business. Marketing, sales, customer service, product, engineering, all of it. There's an opportunity for video in all those places.
GM: There is, yeah.
KD: Going back quickly about how you incorporated video. You saw conversions for candidates spike, too? When I think about one of those like culture videos or who we are videos, I visualize like a lot more production than say a video voicemail, so how do you balance production or the quality of the video versus the speed in which we want it to get out there.
GM: I feel most agencies that are starting with video that the problem is they're afraid of that. They're afraid of the production. We don't have a studio, we don't have a videographer. Who has a videographer? Nobody. Like I don't have millions of dollars to hire a videographer right?
And thousands and thousands of dollars of equipment. Or it's the complete opposite. You start with, I always talk about this, you start with an iPhone, with a cheap tripod 50 bucks in Amazon and like some lighting set, a 100 bucks right, so you start doing that. And then you start adding layers of complexity, and layers of quality and the best thing that we did internally instead of going and spending $10,000 on equipment, and hiring a videographer, and going, let's become a Hollywood production studio.
What we did is the complete opposite. We said okay, you're creative, someone already in the company that was awesome. She loved photography, she was already a designer, she has a great eye for design. She loves Instagram, she does videos at all the time.
So I was like, you, would you like to take on this new challenge? This is a challenge, it's gonna be really hard, but I'm gonna' support you a hundred percent. and it's gonna be a huge opportunity. You will build our video product and we together will make this go across the whole organization. And she was like yeah, let's do it.
So, in that moment if you found the right person to do it then the only thing you need to do is just give them all the resources they. Oh you need another camera? Here it is. You need a $1000? Here it is. You need more time? Stop doing all this start doing. So I feel like empowering those people, especially creative people, you need to give them space. You need to give them time.
Give them the leg room. You can't put a project management tool to like manage. You need to make sure that they have their creative time. They have their moments to actually create that magic.
That needs to happen in the creative side of things. And then support them with everything. Like equipment, time, education. So we teamed up and partnered with amazing people and great tools and make sure that not only we're looking at the production side of video but also the marketing side of video.
The conversion side of video. So we all learn about this whole new way of doing marketing, sales, and service by using video as a channel, as a tool, as a medium to actually communicate. Going back to production, I feel like it's just a matter of time, you need to start slow, you need to make sure you start. because if you're afraid of the big production you're never gonna go into video.
Especially for agencies, you're doing so many things. You're creating content, your conversions, all these things that you need to take care of for your customers. In the case of video, you need to start. Once you start it.
KD: You can layer on top.
GM: Educate and layer on top. And then when you're creating more advanced, more intent driven videos, then you start. Sound is not so good, we need new microphones. Oh, we need a lapel microphone. It's not just let's put a camera and shoot. It's more, lighting is crucial. More than one camera is crucial. We need special microphones to make sure that the sound is great. You need a space to do this.
And then you start having fun. Seriously, for me, it sounds like a lot of work for a lot of people, I'm telling you, I've had the best two years of our agency, developing this whole new thing.
And then once this is developed and off the ground, then you hire your first videographer. And that is beautiful because once that happens then you take it to the next level. Because they come with all their knowledge.
KD: Your production accelerates.
GM: They’re like — you guys are doing great things, but this is not okay. We need to fix this.
KD: Course correct a little bit, true.
GM: Exactly, and that's what we did. We had to figure it out for ourselves. And then we brought the experts. But you do that when you're ready. You do that when you're already doing some production stuff.
KD: So before you get to the videographer, you mentioned trying to identify the person, the creative type that seems to, like hey are you going to be able to own this as a new initiative. Did anything stand out to you in regards to training or education resources? Anywhere you would suggest agencies point there people to? Anything in particular?
GM: Internally to their team?
KD: Yeah. You mentioned the creative type, already on Instagram, good eye for creative. How did you train her? What resources did she lean on?
GM: Well again, we always go back to our partners right? HubSpot is our number one partner right? And we couldn't live without HubSpot right? So HubSpot puts out amazing content that teaches everybody how to do things. We teamed out with Wistia two years ago and that was amazing because they put out specific content of our video. And we teamed out with so many other. We're very big on the ecosystem where we can actually get integrations to do better things. I'm really excited about the whole HubSpot video. I think it's going to be amazing because it's gonna' get everybody excited about video. I'm really, really excited about it. I think that HubSpot always put up great content about it. But again, let them do their own research. I always show them the way. Okay, you go certified on HubSpot you know. You go check these videos. You go check these sessions, on conferences and stuff. But then go do your own research and explore. I think that's key for creative people. You need to let them explore.
To learn by themselves and they're gonna surprise you every time. I mean there's a wealth of knowledge if you just do
KD: Yeah, the right Google searches. But it sounds like if you're a HubSpot partner, there's a whole community that you can lean on. And then just go to the thought leaders, I think you mentioned Wistia.
GM: Yeah, leaders in the space should have content resources.
KD: Pivoting over to helping your clients and your customers with their video initiatives. How do work that into the retainer? Is it a particular line item or is it just kinda infused in all of the other deliverables and things you work on, how does that fit in?
GM: We always start, when we start with a new endeavor like what we did with video two years ago, it's always like okay let's try it ourselves, see how it works, start growing and then we go out and we say we're gonna shoot video for free for you. We're gonna do a video shoot, we're gonna schedule this. Not forever, we're gonna do it once. And we're going to create two, three videos. Maybe a welcome video for a homepage.
Then you have to do a video for sales team. We get them excited and then we introduce these new things into email, landing pages, homepages. Once that starts to happen, then it's really easy to go back and have a conversation of, okay this is something you need to be doing, here's the results that you already got out of it.
That conversation is so much easier than hey I'm doing this new thing, you need to pay me for it right? So I feel like that is the beginning of how you can introduce the product of video. At the same time for us, once we realized video was everything, it was into every single aspect of inbound marketing, sales and service.
We said we can never do retainers without video. The same way we decided we will never work with someone that doesn't want to work with HubSpot, for example. Everybody, every single one of our customers is a HubSpot customer. The same way we decided every single one of those websites, have to be in the HubSpot CMS, because it's the best CMS in the market. So the same way we make those decisions we said, video has to be part of every retainer. So at that time we were like. okay this is part of the retainer and it is there it's not an option, you can't say well we don't really need video. Oh, you need video, and you better do it. And if we're not the right agency for you definitely there's other agencies that.
KD: I was going to ask: is it ever a frictional conversation?
GM: It is absolutely never a frictional conversation and the reason why, I always talk about this, there's the real value of video which is like, yeah higher conversions. You know it's like there is real value right?
But then there's the perceived value of video. And the perceived value of video is huge. People think video is hard. The same reason that companies and agencies don't go into video because it's hard and it's expensive and you need specialists. That is your key to selling the product because everybody thinks that video is hard.
Therefore, it's so easy to show the value of video. You can just add $2,000 to absolutely every retainer. Just an example, $2,000, one video shoot a quarter, up to two, I call them semi-professional videos, right?
After two semi-professional videos everybody's happy and then you'll decide, okay, I need to do more shoots, I need to do more videos and we always do more for the customer so they get extra value. And then everybody's happy right?
KD: The perceived value but then there's a little more room for the actual effort you have to put into it right?
GM: Exactly and you don't have to show them success with video and say the ROI went from 2.1 to 2.2%. Nobody's going to expect that. From even the first year of retainer with videos specifically.
You're going to be doing all the other inbound things that are amazing but you don't have to show them success with video right away because the quick win with video is that video's hot. Video is what everybody wants, video's hard. And then their face is there saying beautiful things about their product and they love it.
And I feel like that's huge. It's so easy if you think about it. The sentiment that it’s hard, expensive — it's actually so easy and that's why video is so beautiful for marketing, sales, and service.
KD: And if anything, get started. Again don't let the idea of a major studio and specialists and videographer. Don't let that get in the way. You can start at a pretty inexpensive way.
GM: Yeah, make it happen.
KD: Last question for you. I ask this to everybody. Never really sure where it’ll take us. What would you say is the weirdest, strangest part of agency life?
GM: I think managing people. It is always funny and fun. And like sometimes you have to go where no man has been before or whatever. I'm a Trekkie but I'm not showing how Trekkie I am. I feel like managing people sometimes, I don't know if it's weird, it's hard though.
So for us it's very important to find the right partners. So all of our customers are actually partners. And find the right employees in our team. And find the right partners in the developers and all the softwares so that balance creates sometimes friction. sometimes we need to fire our customers. Sometimes it requires a extra level of weirdness. Now if you're talking about crazy weird stuff. We try to avoid those.
KD: That's probably a good thing,
GM: But we have a lot of fun in the office. It’s a good thing, it’s awesome.
I think that the toughest thing is managing people. That's the one thing in business that you need to become so good at. And actually understanding who's good for what, like the right people in the right place internally and externally. I don't think a lot of agencies do that, if they take care of their team that's amazing and a lot of them do, it's the only way to grow but it's also the customers, you can't work for everybody. You're not selling candy, this is a partnership, and it will only work if we work together.
KD: Yeah, be strategic with who you say yes to and be open to sometimes saying no or rerouting.
GM: And there some weird people out there. That are not a good fit for our agency.
KD: People are weird.
GM: People are definitely weird. Stay weird though. Especially if you're a creative, you can be weird, go for it.
KD: This was a video on video but I appreciate you coming in, man. We'll catch you next time, alright.
GM: Awesome, thank you.
If you like what you watched, make sure to subscribe to our Agency Unfiltered
newsletter which will remind you when the next episode drops as well as send you a ton of other helpful, strategically curated agency content.
You could also subscribe to our channel on YouTube or podcasts on SoundCloud. And if you want to keep the conversation going, tweet me @kevin_dunn. Remember keep it unfiltered, stay weird, I'm Kevin Dunn and I'll see you next time.