• Keystone Content: Quality Marketing Content for Your Growing Company

    It’s an exciting time to begin a new business, especially when it comes to marketing your company. Today, entrepreneurs can harness the web and social media platforms on their own to efficiently reach their prospective clients. Businesses can now become their own publishers and media companies.

    At some point during its growth period, however, your business will get large enough that you will have to hire a full-time, in-house, experienced marketer; an outside marketing agency; or both.

    Pro Versus User-Generated Content

    As a company grows, there is a need for the communications that reach its clients and prospective clients to become more sophisticated. What worked well during the start-up period, such as posting photos and video directly from an iPhone, starts to look a little unprofessional as the company reaches seven- and eight-figure revenues. If your content looks cheap and amateurish, your clients are likely to think your product or service is cheap and amateurish, too.

    We’re not saying you have to eliminate all smartphone-conceived image content, especially knowing the amount of new content every business needs to generate. Instead, we’re advising that you begin generating what we call “anchor” or “keystone” quality content. This is professionally produced, higher-end content that has the look and feel of a larger company. It is the content that lives on your website’s “About” page and is a featured video on your YouTube, LinkedIn, or Facebook Business pages.

    Image Content

    Let’s look at a couple of differences between keystone content and user-generated content, as they apply to images, as you would see in head shot or video interview. In the head shot below, you will notice that it was taken with a wide-angle lens, similar to what every mobile device uses. The image to the right was taken with a 50-millimeter or longer professional lens. Which would you say is more flattering? Notice the distortion in facial features from the wide-angle lens.

    How about flat lighting versus three-point lighting? Look at these two images. It’s obvious which is more flattering.

    It’s not just the lens, the camera, or the lighting setup. It’s the composition of the image, it’s the correct color temperature of the lighting, and it’s how the background appears. For video, it’s the audio quality, the music bed choices, and the editing structure.

    Please see this series of YouTube videos from Disney: Each is photographed beautifully and edited with a story structure that grabs you by the heart.

    It’s Now Affordable

    In the last few years, there have been technological breakthroughs in high-end, affordable photographic and video equipment. The advancements include small 4K cameras, drone video, small gimbal stabilizers, tiny audio field recorders, and battery-powered professional LED lighting.

    Of course, Disney does it better than anyone. But in the hands of a good video professional with a knowledge of storytelling, this new equipment can put production costs within the budget of any seven-figure-grossing company.

    As you plan your 2019 marketing strategy, and if your revenue growth justifies it, consider hiring a pro marketing team to produce your new photographic and video communication assets. The difference will be clear.