Sir Richard Branson started up a mail order shop at the age of 20. He went on to open a recording studio soon after. The rest is history and Branson is now estimated to be worth 3 billion pounds. He has built one of the most successful brands in the world which encompasses a range of companies. He is no stranger to mistakes or failure but what sets him apart is his ability to bounce back and keep moving forward. One of the main driving forces behind his business development ideas is his desire to have fun – and it shows.
In his book, Screw It! Let’s Do It!, Branson outlines some of his guiding principles in business. At a first glance, they don’t seem particularly complex. But this is probably the key. Branson keeps things simple. He sets his sights on a goal, works towards it, achieves it and then moves on to the next. Here we have applied some of his key principles to video marketing.
Just Do It!
The first point worth taking note of is ‘Just Do It’. This can be applied directly to those of you who have been considering video production or have it on your agenda but haven’t got round to it yet. Seriously, just do it. It is the only way you will get anywhere near reaching your goal. Don’t let fears of things not being perfect or of things going wrong be a barrier to you trying. If you do make mistakes, learn from them and make improvements next time. The toughest part of anything is getting started.
Branson recognises the importance of fun in business. He is notorious for defying convention. He runs his businesses with enthusiasm and claims to start up new enterprises on gut instinct rather than getting the accountants in at the beginning. I wouldn’t go as far as recommending that you don’t bother looking at the finances before launching a video marketing strategy, but I would definitely agree that it is essential to have fun in this process. Video marketing will possibly be a creative opportunity for you that you don’t often get. Your results are likely to correlate with how much you have enjoyed the process, so try to have fun!
Branson tells his employees to ‘be bold, but don’t gamble’. This is an important principle when approaching video marketing for the first time. You will want to stand out from the crowd but you also need to make sure that you don’t damage the positive elements of your existing reputation. You need to avoid shocking or surprising your return customer base and at the same time you want to attract new business. To strike this balance consider seeking some external advice and opinion when developing your video marketing strategy so that you are in touch with external perception of your videos.
Delving into the world of video marketing for the first time is a big challenge. Facing challenges head on are how we learn new things about ourselves and how we grow. There are a range of different challenges you can set yourself in relation to your video marketing strategy e.g. the content or style of your video, your goals in terms of statistics for your video or in terms of the quantity and frequency of the production of videos for your business.
Stand on your own feet
Whilst it is really important to listen to the opinions of others, it is also just as important to be able to make independent decisions. Video production is a process that involves constant, relentless decision-making! It is vital that you can be decisive and make quick decisions to avoid unnecessary delays and therefore wastage of time and cash. Good planning in advance will mean that most of the important decisions have been made before you enter the production process, however don’t underestimate the potential for questions to arise throughout the process.
The other principles that Branson talks about are more general and less easy to apply directly to a video marketing strategy. However, in business terms, they are just as important because they highlight how his personality has helped him achieve his goals. He talks about living in the moment, valuing family and friends, having respect and doing some good; all of which make his seem like a very balanced individual!
Branson talks about creating something that everyone who works for you can be proud of. He also talks about creating something that genuinely makes a positive difference to people’s lives. By this, he isn’t necessarily focusing on the idea of doing ‘good’ for the sake of doing good; he recognises that if you are actually achieving the goal of making a big difference to people’s lives, then in business terms you are doing something right because people will want more of it.
Neil Davidson is the Founder of My Web Presenters, who are a leading website spokesperson specialist. They work with businesses of all sizes to create and market compelling and emotive video that helps them to communicate with their specific audience.