UPDATE: If you want access to my $1M Video Boss Bonus, check it out here.
So last year I took the plunge on Video Boss 1.0, while not perfect, it was a good investment that paid itself back shortly after getting it, I wanted to cover the pros and cons of it.
Over the last 10 years I have worked directly with Emmy award winning teams, Fortune 500 clients, on cutting edge video, in the very heart of entertainment: Hollywood.
Despite all that amazing experience, Video Boss’s training helped me realize: when it came to video marketing I was doing *everything* wrong. Which caused me to look a bit like this.
Shortly into Video Boss (even just the prelaunch content) I learned a ton about video marketing, and more importantly putting videos to use in generating money in my business. Like Video Boss is one of the only courses I’ve bought that actually paid for itself using the tactics they teach, actually in a very short time.
Video can be done cheap, without fancy tools.
This took me back. Coming from the “real world” I’m used to the traditional video route where you have to use heavy weight tools, like Premiere and AfterFx, beefy machines, and HiDef cams etc. After shelling out about $5K to get in the door every year another $2K “tax” comes to get the next greatest version…which always seems to be needed if you work in teams as the file formats always manage to be half compatible. To be honest I have kicked myself at times for spending this, year after year, as half the time buying into these monster packages, I use 1-3 tools, and never touch the rest, but Adobe is sharp in their packaging their pricing it almost always is cheaper to buy the whole set if you want more than 1 tool.
To contrast Video Boss teaches how to use common tools like Keynote, Powerpoint dialed up to 8 when most people stop at 1 or 2 to get what is easy to mistake for AfterFx work, without the labor.
Funny enough even as a “geek” I had never really even heard of Keynote. What made me really fall in love was it was with the near motion graphics quality when it was shown in the launch of Product Launch Formula 1.0 (which I didn’t realize was done by Andy Jenkins using Keynote and a old laptop). I was so impressed, since Keynote is only available on a Mac so I plunked down $350 to buy a used mac mini off ebay (same could be had for $150 today…you don’t need powerful boxes for this).
Then I spent about 8 hours learning Keynote, creating 2 videos (one for an affiliate contest, the other for an offline client) ONLY using keynote and a USB headset,…nothing else gear wise was needed, keynote has a neat mode that lets you get record the audio and output to mp4. Then via a couple sales, I then made the money back on the training, AND the mac mini is a great home theater +music box that will be around much longer than the use of my Adobe software licenses. Pretty good deal! Sadly that’s all the money I made using video as I realized that much of the workflow could be automated, so that’s what I’ve been working on for about a year now 😉
Want to really reach people with video? Drop the Hollywood Expectations, in fact don’t use video at all…
Another major problem I found in doing video, is having such high expectations, they really aren’t needed and in fact ..really get in the way.
You’ve probably heard the saying owning 20% of something is better than 100% of nothing, and that is true in video. Perfect video just never gets done, there is always something that can be done better…and really bad video is better than most good text, so 20% video I’ll talk more about is good enough.
First, we are seeing a shift in the world, Youtube democratized video, anybody with a smart phone is now a videographer. This is very empowering, if you have a passion, you now have a voice and an outlet to be heard, without years of esotaric knowledge or equipment. Videos with millions of views, are just passionate people being themselves, crappy camera, crappy lighting and crappy sound…it doesn’t matter. For example: Gary got 14Million views just by being goofy and doesn’t talk at all!:
What I found is by expecting myself to do polished work, I just never did any of it. Running several companies in startup mode, it’s hard enough to break out the video camera, and never enough time in the day to fiddle with AfterFx as much as I’d love to, it just kept getting put off and put off and put off, till months would go by.
In the Video Boss Training learning how to Using tools like keynote and powerpoint you don’t even have to use real “video”… just slides with good enough content and some effects. This was WAY easier, as it didn’t matter what I looked like on video, I didn’t have to memorize a script just read while the presentation played. I was able to find I could do videos in 1-4 hours by dropping the standards, and guess what…in testing these “ugly” performed better from a marketing perspective than some of the polished videos I’ve been a part of with emmy award, and I could create 10..to even 100 of them, in the timeframe of doing one the old fashioned way.
The Uglier the Video the better?!
The other revelatory thing was learning using a similar approach from Ryan Deiss in his “ugly video” sales letters. Where using a similar no-video video got him 3x the conversions over the long form sales letter,and by being simple, there is nothing to get in the way of your message.
Ever watched a bad sci-fi show/movie and seen really unbelievable bad effects? Those that probably took millions of dollars to do and required talented teams months of research to get right but still looked bad. Well guess what the same thing happens for normal video as well. If you watch any amount of TV or movies you are unwittingly accustomed to multimillion dollar production baselines, which makes everything seem smooth and polished, anything half assed, looks like wanna bes with a crap budget.
The good news is by dropping the bar to simple text and images, and stock transitions, you can “get away with it”, there is nothing to trigger the high quality detector, In fact done properly it’s sort of hypnotic, like being a kid having a good read-a-long storytime.
All the Gear in the World won’t help unless you’ve got a good script…
This is one area that I thought was well worth it in the training as there isn’t much in the way of copywriting towards the unique aspects of video. Basically if you spend $2K at a community college learning video, you learn the nuts and bolts of making video (usually with heavy tools), but you’ll never learn how to create video that generates sales. Video Boss training has several formulas for creating scripts that sell. Like the “FAB” Formula:
I’ll bet they cover that in the launch video.
The Downside to The Video Boss…
Video Boss did have some things that could be improved, and hope to see in Video Boss 2.0. For one there was a LOT of content, many modules, and as typical in these online courses it’s hard to know how much is there, how much is left, and remember what you watched and what you haven’t., plus what you got out of it, and what you need to revisit.
I would strongly want a checklist and transcripts so it’s easy to skim and delve. Video is great, especially in the hands of a entertaining master like Andy, but the essence can often be conveyed in text faster…plus reviewing it’s impossible to watch 40hrs of video multiple times.
What’s new in Video Boss 2.0?
It’s hard to say for sure as it’s all been so hush hush.
So as you know video boss 2.0 is in prelaunch and I am putting a bonus with some of my video tricks, and …access to service that has been in stealth mode for months, that does ALL the work FOR YOU. But between here and then I will have some other posts on video coolness. So stay tuned.