Tag Archives: testimonial

Video Email Strategy Done Right

Posted on September 18th, 2013 | Leave a Comment

Video Email Strategy Done RightI received a video email yesterday worth noting. That’s because it’s the second time I’ve received the video, and I think that’s a good thing.

The email came from Act|On. I actually blogged about the video the first time I received it because it’s a good example of an effective testimonial. The company is all about automated marketing, so no doubt the email I received then and yesterday was actually a planned attack that’s been in the works ever since I entered the company’s system.

Sending the same video email twice

At first, you might think sending the same video twice is a bad idea, but here’s why it’s a great idea. Just because you send an email video doesn’t mean everyone is going to see it.

I know, that’s kind of crazy for me to write. After all, we produce marketing videos. I should be telling you how many people do watch them. And while that’s true, the other part of that is no campaign gets a 100% click rate.

The reality is that if you’re cracking 40% with your open rate, you’re a rock star email marketer. Even if you are, that means 60% still aren’t opening your emails. Those who do open are likely to click that video if it’s relevant to them, but there are certainly those who will still pass it up.

Have a video strategy

What that brings me to is your video strategy. I know too many business leaders who create a video, share it once via email and/or social media and that’s it. A successful video campaign takes more than that. It takes a real plan.

When the video first comes out, you need to post it multiple times during the week on social media… and at different times of day. Do the same thing a few of months later. Do it again a year after its original release.

Do something similar with email. Send out that first email, but take a page from Act|On and send it again. The company’s first email I received months ago was dubbed as the case study of a business using marketing automation. The one I got yesterday had the subject line, “Stack your sales pipeline with more leads.”  Recipients who didn’t watch the first time might decide to hit play this time around. They are still potential audience member, so give them another chance to watch.

You spend time and money producing your marketing videos, but that’s just phase one. Phase two is making sure it gets seen.

–Tony Gnau

Three Good Reasons For Video Testimonials

Posted on August 22nd, 2013 | Leave a Comment

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Ending the week on a high note with Hightail. I blogged about the file sharing company not too long ago when they produced a video about its name change from YouSendIt to Hightail. Today, they follow that video with a traditional testimonial.

It isn’t revolutionary by any means, but it’s a great example of solid video content. It’s also something every business leader can learn from.

Why testimonials work

Testimonials are nothing new. They’ve been around and used for marketing purposes for… well… probably forever. Here’s what I love about testimonial videos.

  1. you have the option of making them in a way that’s marketing without sounding like marketing… although the Hightail example is a little more overt.
  2. getting a client to do a testimonial for you means an opportunity to give them some added publicity as well.
  3. no bones about it… real people telling viewers that they like you is a powerful message.

Hightail testmonialTactic changes, results the same

It’s funny… probably the thing I love most about testimonials is the ability to sell without selling. You can feature a client, show how they use your product or service and not hit people over the head with the message. I mentioned that the Hightail video is overt. They basically leave no doubt that this is a marketing video, but they do it in a pretty awesome way and one worth mentioning.

The COO featured in the video comes right out and says, “I hate being on-camera, and I hate doing testimonials.” I’ll bet that sound bite changed the whole approach to the video. Throwing that in throws away the notion of selling without selling, but it works.

Actually, I love it. What a great statement to get on-camera! It says it all… I don’t like doing this sort of thing, but I believe in this company so much I’m willing to be here.

That’s a powerful message. That’s the power of video testimonials.

–Tony Gnau

Tony Gnau is a three-time Emmy-winning journalist. He is also the founder and chief storytelling officer at T60 Productions. T60 has won 11 Telly Awards for its work over the last eight years.

Testimonial Videos Save The Camera-Shy

Posted on May 20th, 2013 | Leave a Comment

camera 2I got a question last week from a business owner, “What do you do if you want a video for your business but you’re camera-shy?” It’s not an unfamiliar question and my standard answers is, “Suck it up.” After a moment of shock, I smile and say, “Do testimonial videos.”

testimonials accomplish a few things

Testimonials are the camera-shy business leader’s best friend because it’s a win-win-win. Hearing from people who use a product or service makes a big impact on viewers… the clients who provide their story get some publicity as well… and the camera-shy business leader doesn’t have to be seen or heard on camera!

Testimonials work… bigtime

I’ve blogged a lot in the past (here, here, here… just to name a few) about how effective testimonials can be, but I think this is the first time I have come at it from this angle.

It’s certainly something to keep in mind if you’re looking for ways to promote your business, but don’t necessarily feel comfortable being the face of the company.

–Tony Gnau

Tony Gnau is a three-time Emmy-winning journalist. He is also the founder and chief storytelling officer at T60 Productions. T60 has won 11 Telly Awards for its work over the last eight years.

Testimonials And Marketing Videos A Good Match

Posted on May 7th, 2013 | Leave a Comment

act-on emailThere are all sorts of ways you can use video to help market a business, but there are few things as effective as client testimonials or case studies.

T60 is a sponsor for the Chicago chapter of the American Marketing Association (ChicagoAMA). One of our follow sponsors is the company Act|On. They sell a marketing automation software platform. I spoke with one of the reps at a recent event, gave them a business card and asked for more information about their services.

Follow-up email with video

Consider me impressed. They’ve been following-up with me on a consistent basis, and about a week ago I got an email with a subject line that immediately caught my attention… Video Case Study: Achieving real results with Marketing Automation (VIDEO BELOW).

The email drove me to a video produced by the company that features one of their clients singing Act|On’s praises.

I loved it. It looked good, sounded good and it told a nice story.

Testimonials benefit both parties

One of the reasons I enjoy testimonials like this is that it benefits everyone. Obviously, Act|On benefits from having a customer share their experiences, but that client gets a boost as well. As soon as I was done watching the video, I Googled both businesses to learn more about each of them.

Maybe the only critique I have with the video is that it probably could have been a minute shorter and still accomplished the same goal, but that’s really nitpicking. It’s a solid effort, and considering I am a prospective customer it obviously kept my attention throughout.

Anyway, just goes to show you that a quality video telling a compelling story can even reel-in a video professional.

Well done Act|On.

–Tony Gnau

Tony Gnau is a three-time Emmy-winning journalist. He is also the founder and chief storytelling officer at T60 Productions. T60 has won 11 Telly Awards for its work over the last eight years.

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Marketing Testimonials Add Credibility To Your Website

Posted on February 27th, 2013 | Leave a Comment

T60 testimonial pageWe’re using the new T60 website this week to highlight some ways businesses can use video content to create terrific user experiences for clients and prospects.

Yesterday, I blogged about the importance of the About Us video. Today, it’s another staple that businesses should consider… marketing testimonials.


This is a great way to brag about yourself without bragging about yourself because your clients do it for you. It’s not you telling the world how great you are, you’re allowing real people who have used your product or service to testify on your behalf. 

We live in a world of reviews. Before making a purchase, one of the things we do is seek them out. You have an opportunity to provide positive reviews through testimonials.

Sure, you could post text quotes. We’ve done that for clients we haven’t been able to get on-camera… yet.

Gini Dietrich has already agreed to go on-camera next time we get together for a Spin Sucks shoot, right Gini? Next time we’re shooting in SoCal, I’ll tie down Jeremy Hogue for an interview at the new Sovereign Healthcare offices. The reason why…


It’s one thing to read what someone has said, it’s something else to hear it coming from the directly. It adds weight. That person took time out of their busy schedule to shoot an interview and give an endorsement. That says a lot.

It does require some initiative. You have to be comfortable asking your clients to do it. If you work with someone who’s really excited about what you’ve done for them, they’re the one to ask for a testimonial. Then it’s just a matter of hiring a professional storyteller to put it together in a way that will appeal to an audience.

What does your client get out it? Well, you could sweeten the offer by doing another video featuring them… but I’ll save that for tomorrow’s post.

–Tony Gnau

Interview Locations Don’t Matter

Posted on January 15th, 2013 | Leave a Comment

Screen shot 2013-01-14 at 7.20.22 PMHave you ever had food poisoning? If not, I don’t recommend it. If you have, you know what I’ve been going through the last couple of days.

No gory details, instead, something that caught my attention over the weekend, and something I stewed over the during two days on the couch. Interview locations really don’t matter.

This is something I’ve blogged about in the past, but it was driven home to me while watching the ESPN documentary, The Marinovich Project.

The good, the bad, and the storytelling

The movie was a contrast in interview shots. Some “good”… Marinovich out on the beach. Some “bad”… NFL Hall of Famer Howie Long in a nondescript hotel room.

And you know what? It didn’t matter.

Why? Because the storytelling was so good. See, a good story is far more important than simple visuals like an interview location. It’s not to say you shouldn’t look for the best location possible, but it’s not something to freak out about either.

A good videographer/storyteller will make it work one way or another.

–Tony Gnau


Making Your Clients Your Sales Team

Posted on August 28th, 2012 | Leave a Comment

I got to meet marketing expert Geoff Livingston during a shoot a couple of months ago. He and one of our clients, Arment Dietrich CEO Gini Dietrich, were launching a new book. Geoff’s a fun guy. I’ve been reading his blog ever since, and yesterday’s post really got my attention.

The title says it all… Customers Don’t Care About Us. He writes about how social engagement doesn’t always add up to more sales… that recommendations by peers rule.

That’s one of the reasons I frequently encourage clients to make their videos about their customers… not them.

I’m talking about going beyond the testimonial. The heart of the story is about your client’s business, then eventually work in how your company helps them.

You can also use them in projects or with issues you’re passionate about. In our case, we have an ongoing video series about why our clients use video.

Each is a powerful way to show a) how dedicated you are to your clients… giving them some free publicity. And b) how dedicated they are to you… that they’re willing to go on camera for your company.

That’s a message prospects will trust.

–Tony Gnau


Every Employee Is A Sales Person

Posted on May 8th, 2012 | Leave a Comment

Your team members are your best sales people. They might not know it, but they are.

Highlighting enthusiastic employees who buy-in to your company and are passionate about their jobs will help you make more sales.

Don’t get freaked out because they’re not in sales, marketing or the C-Suite. They’re real people who will appeal to real audiences.

Feature your team members in your videos and you’ll love how they make your company look.

–Tony Gnau

Client Testimonials Provide A Win-Win

Posted on November 22nd, 2011 | Leave a Comment

Client testimonials are a great way to show prospects that you’re a trusted company. Posting a quote on your website is nice, but producing a video sends an even stronger message.

Don’t take my word for it. Companies like Bank of America invest in testimonial storytelling. The financial giant is producing a series of videos in multiple cities highlighting how it’s helping local businesses.

I discovered the series through an ad on Facebook. It jumped out because the ad featured one of our clients, Northern Illinois Food Bank. A series like this provides an obvious benefit to Bank of America. Having clients talk about their situations and how the bank has helped them is a nice promotion for the bank, but there’s another benefit as well.

The Bank of America clients that are featured get a healthy dose of free publicity. What a great way to honor clients and foster the relationship with them.

Client testimonials are a win-win for both organizations that take part.

–Tony Gnau

Getting Creative With Content Budgets

Posted on August 17th, 2011 | Leave a Comment

Everyone’s budget is tight. We run into it all the time. Business leaders want a professional video production, but they say they can’t afford it.

Video production costs are actually very reasonable these days. What would have run you 20-grand ten years ago costs half of that now. The average video we produce these days comes in between $4,000-$8,000. That’s a high-quality, professional video production.

Even so, I realize times are tough. Budgets are smaller and if you don’t have the money, you don’t have the money. That leads me to a couple of suggestions.

First, companies need to plan ahead. Research your video project in advance, keeping one eye on the next fiscal calendar. Get a proposal from your video provider before budgets are made so that you can work the production into it in advance.

“Hi Joe Video Producer, we’re working on next year/quarter’s fiscal budget and we want to have a video produced. Any way you could give me an estimate?”

Trust me, they’ll be happy to help.

Second, look for sponsors. Every business is different, but think about vendors your company works with and see if they have any interest in contributing.

“Hi Jane Vendor, we’re producing an online video for YouTube, other social media, and an email blast. We’d love to get a few of our vendors some exposure as well.  If you’re interested in participating, we can do product placements for $100 or even interview someone from your company for $500 and include a few sound bites.”

Those are just random numbers I threw in there, but you get the point. Would that be tacky? I don’t know, you tell me. I’m just brainstorming here. Keep in mind, I’m suggesting contacting the vendors you purchase from, not customers you sell to.

I’m certainly open to other ideas. In fact, I’d love to hear how businesses are getting creative about paying for any content they’re creating… so let me know!

–Tony Gnau