March 24, 2022, will go down in AMA Wichita history. Not only was it the first sell-out luncheon crowd in recent history but it also marked the first in-person event in almost 2 years. And if that isn’t enough of a reason to be carved in the history books, then the marketing for the event was. “Your Videos Probably Stink,” the Facebook post stated. A change from the typical event promotion but the vibe was a true reflection of the presentation that lay ahead for those who dared to register and attend.
Inside the picturesque Fidelity Bank Bravely Onward Club at the beautiful Riverfront Stadium, home to the Wichita Wind Surge, the captivating Luis Rodriguez, President and CEO of KeyCentrix and Partner of Method Productions, and this month’s presenter, began with a question to the crowd…
Why would anyone care about your idea?
A few brave souls in the audience (including myself) attempted to answer and were met with thanks but no certainty that we had given the correct response. Before revealing the answer, Luis took everyone on a journey back in time. 1983 to be exact, the year Apple launched “The Lisa,” a predecessor of the more commonly known “Macintosh”. And how did this launch go? Well, according to Luis, it sucked, but not from a lack of trying. The big launch occurred in a nine-page ad in the NY Times with the headline “Apple invents the personal computer. Again.” At that time, putting such a large advertisement in that publication was equivalent to a Super Bowl commercial today. (Interested in seeing it? A quick Google search will show you the ad.) So, you might be asking, if it was such a big deal… why did it suck? Well, Luis had the answers for us.
- Very few people can recall “The Lisa”.
- Apple only sold $10,000 worth of units.*
- Microsoft rose to dominance that year with its “Making it easier” campaign.
*Fun fact: one of the places listed in the ad that you could purchase a Lisa was right here in Wichita, KS but we still can’t get an a Apple store…
But the true answer to why Apple bombed so badly came to light when the answer to the original question “Why would anyone care about your idea” was revealed. The truth… NOBODY CARES ABOUT YOUR IDEA. A concept Apple did not embrace, but instead they committed these two common mistakes:
Mistake #1 – It’s not about the buyer.
Mistake #2 – It requires decoding.
A couple of expensive and time-sucking mistakes that marketers even today make. So what did Luis tell us we should do instead?
- Have a Clear Message. If a baby can’t decode it. It’s not working. Don’t use jargon.
- Don’t add “noise” (the biggest mistake marketers make). Don’t interject your own view into the video. KEEP IT SIMPLE and don’t muddy it up.
- Craft your message. Spend time thinking about what you SHOULDN’T say and pair it down. Every Oscar-winning movie leaves countless amounts of footage and clips on the cutting room floor. If it doesn’t move your message forward, don’t use it.
Ooooh, I love that last line. That might be my biggest personal takeaway. The reason why I like it so much is that it’s a good gut check. Whether I’m communicating through video or other mediums of marketing, it’s something good to ask myself before moving forward: does this move our message forward? (Luis, you better get on securing a copyright for that before I whip out my vinyl cutter and start making t-shirts.)
Now back to the presentation…
Luis then indulged us by showing a perfect example of what NOT to do with a viewing of one of 2019’s Super Bowl commercials featuring Martin Scorsese, Jonah Hill, and a “cameo” made by the new Coca-Cola Energy. VIEW HERE
So why should we not create a video like the advertising GENIUSES that made this one for Coca-Cola? The answer to the question came with a few more questions:
- When watching, how long did it take you to figure out what they were talking about?
- What was the message? The message was not clear. What was Jonah doing?
- How do you achieve the look of wood? By using wood! A fun quip the Method team shared to get the point across that there is a good time to use a celebrity but most of the time it’s incorrect and in this instance, it just didn’t make sense.
So how do we avoid these mistakes??? Don’t worry, Luis has the answers! (Insert visual image of Super Luis, fists on his hips & cape blowing in the wind.)
TELL A STORY.
The best formula to tell is a story is through a Hollywood-esque, blockbuster movie-type story because EVERY STORY HAS A HERO. How do you find a hero? By using Luis’s 5 “H”s to find your storyline.
H #1: HOW
The buyer is the hero and you show how your organization can help your hero thrive.
H #2: HEAD
Use logic, facts, and data. BE CAREFUL; you can go from facts to jargon quickly.
H #3: HEART
The most common. Tap into sympathy and empathy to make clear you can help.
H #4: HUMOR
The 2nd most common. Use humor to create authenticity to make clear you can help. The primary and fastest vehicle to authenticity, as humor is used to make a connection.
H #5: HEAT
Lightning in a Bottle. Heat is the hardest to capture, you tap into fear (fear of missing out (FOMO)) to dislodge apathy & make it clear that you can help.
The presentation ends with a full-circle moment. “Why would anyone care about your idea?” appears back on the screen, followed by some good news. Our friends at Apple learned the answer, which is evident in their “Think Different” campaign. View the video HERE. There is not a single computer in the posters or in the video and it was one of the campaigns that redefined the Apple brand. In contrast to the ad in 1983, Apple told a story and understood that their buyers are their heroes.
So, let’s all take Luis’s tips to make sure our videos don’t suck. Run every video through the story formula. Make sure your idea fits in their story and helps them thrive. And if it doesn’t move the story forward, don’t use it.
Thank you, Luis, for a wonderful presentation full of fun. Your charisma, confidence, and passion for great video content is infectious!
Q & A
Don’t let FOMO get the best of you: register for next month’s event today!