Video Editing is Becoming an Important Skill Set for Ad Agency New Business

Tom Martin video production agency new business

The skill set for doing agency new business is changing so be prepared to adapt.

“There are not a whole lot of people who have done this job in the past who know how to do it well now,” Avi Dan, a former new business executive at Euro RSCG, Berlin Cameron United and Saatchi who’s now president of Darling in New York.

A significant paradigm shift is taking place that impacts how ad agencies acquire new business and also affects the knowledge and skill sets new business rainmakers need for success.  For instance, content marketing and inbound lead generation have become an integral part of agency new business and require those in business development to acquire the necessary skills to adapt to this change.

Video is Becoming Important for New Business

Adding video to your new business toolkit is a great way to personalize your agency. It offers prospects bits of content that has “pass-along value”. The kind of content they will want to share on YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ and Pinterest.

  • 83.1 percent of the total U.S. Internet audience viewed online videos in a single month – comScore
  • Every minute, 24 hours of video is uploaded to the network and 2 billion videos are being watched per day – YouTube

This rabid popularity of video is fueled by new technologies. For example, the  Tablet,  has moved beyond eBooks and video games. It has become a portable television. The growing use of the Tablet has helped to popularize video content. People, including your prospects, now watch more videos than they do traditional television.

Creating video is becoming a necessary component to your agency’s content marketing strategy. In a recent article written for REELSEO, David Murdico, executive creative director for Super Cool Creative, writes,

Video is the crown jewel of content marketing because people can both see and hear your message and they can be moved and called to action in ways rarely possible with other forms of content. Essentially, video is all of the other forms of content rolled into one.”

Understand the Basics of Video Production

I predict that a good portion of our time and resources will be devoted to creating, editing, and distributing unique agency content by way of video. Business development professionals will need to be skilled using editing software such as iMovie, Final Cut and GarageBand.

The use of video is a creative way to develop a strong appeal for your agency’s services among its best prospects. This is true, especially given that production is inexpensive and easy, with the familiarity of a few tools.

My friend, Tom Martin, founder of Converse Digital, provides us with a great example of what can be done with the simplest video production tools. He honed his video skills through a project that was produced entirely from his iPhone,  Talking With Tom, a new blog where he posts video interviews with leading digital thinkers. Each video is shot, edited and published to this blog using nothing other than an iPhone4.

“‘TalkingWithTom’ is my effort to show everyone that you don’t need a heap of money to create and manage effective social media campaigns. You just need a cool idea and quality content.” Tom Martin

From this experience Tom shares these video tips this recent presentation 28 ways To Create Awesome Blog Content with an iPhone.

Some additional video production articles written by Tom that will be of help:
About Michael Gass

Consultant | Trainer | Author | Speaker

Since 2007, he has been pioneering the use of social media, inbound and content marketing strategies specifically for agency new business.

He is the founder of Fuel Lines Business Development, LLC, a firm which provides business development training and consulting services to advertising, digital, media and PR agencies.


  1. Wow, thanks for the hat tip Michael. I do agree, video is an incredible biz dev tool. I still remember the daysnofnhiring a video production company to do “voice of the consumer” videos for pitches and now I can do the same thing with an iPhone and a laptop.

    Thanks again fornthebshout out.

  2. Michael Gass says:

    You have been my inspiration Tom. I purchased my Nikon D3000 because of you. I now have my own lighting equipment and backdrops for shooting training videos from my home office. Your editing tips have been very helpful.

  3. Thank goodness the majority of the industry does not share Tim’s view on this or we might be out of business 🙂 While iPhone videos are cute and great for blogs and facebook, they are certainly no substitute for professional quality production. There is no place where quality is more important than in a new business pitch! Think about it, this is the first time the brand will be exposed to the quality of work you do as an agency…and you want to show them something shot on an iphone and edited in imovie!!!! Are you serious?

  4. Tom D —
    Having just sat through not one but two big agency reviews from the other side of the table (client) I can assure you production quality does not trump content quality.

    While clients certainly appreciated the high end production, were entertained, but during the post pitch discussions, where the actual agency selection was made, those videos had zero bearing on the outcome.

    In fact, one of the most powerful videos I’ve ever used in a pitch was one I shot myself — the Dir of Sales actually asked for a copy of it so he could share it with his sales staff. I did it with my own camera and my own laptop — it wasn’t overly pretty but it was spot on — it clearly articulated a purchase hurdle the company had never considered.

    THAT is what clients hire — if they want pretty production they’ll go to the movies.

    Tom (AKA “Tim”)

  5. Apologies Tom! I and O are next to each other on the keyboard, that was completely unintentional, I meant no disrespect. As an expert in the video industry I couldn’t disagree with you more. I’ll be the first to admit that my opinion is completely skewed on this topic since I work for a company that produced over $2MM in pitch videos alone last year. I’m happy for your recent success and respect your personal point of view but it certainly does not trump the hundreds of client and agency interactions I have each year around this exact topic that point to the exact opposite conclusion. I can only guess at the effectiveness of the videos that we produce are in a pitch but I can say over 80% of the agencies that used our videos won their pitches. 80%!!! That number has been consistent for the better part of a decade! I’m obviously not going to change your mind on this topic so I’ll just say humbly: Agree to disagree.

  6. Tom — how can I argue with a man who admits his bias 😉
    Yes, we’ll have to agree to disagree as we’re on opposite ends of this spectrum… but then, that’s what makes this such a great industry.
    Congrats on your success and hope it continues.

  7. Thanks Tom, to you as well!

  8. Michael Gass says:

    Tom D, There are many uses for video content beyond agency pitches. Videos that can be created inexpensively such as interviews, tutorials, etc. and viewed from a variety of social media platforms to provide helpful content for an agency’s target audience and it is not a prerequisite be an expert in the video industry to have success.

    Full disclosure, Snippies is a provider of marketing communication videos that is often used to create content for agencies and particularly agency pitches. I’ve used your company’s services myself.

  9. I completely agree about the many uses of video. We’ve seen this migration first hand. In 2001 90% of our video work for clients was pitch related, now, 11 years later, it’s maybe 30% of the work we do. The number of pitch videos we produce every year hasn’t decreased, it’s actually gone up year over year. The insatiable appetite for video content and the accessibility of better equipment is raising the bar for everyone. That is a good thing! Tom Martin gives some fantastic pointers in the podcast above about how to make user generated content more effective! I was trying to make 2 points. The first was trying to convey that you have to know your audience and only utilize self generated content when and where it is appropriate. The second was that comparing the quality of something professionally captured and captured by lesser means is comparing apples and oranges.

  10. PS I wanted to thank you first for your past patronage of Snippies and, more importantly, for the compelling and relevant content you constantly put out in your newsletters!

  11. Michael Gass says:

    Thanks Tom. Snippies is a great service for agencies that I recommend.

  12. everyonesaneditor says:

    I might add that now you can also write on your tablet, so now anyone has the ability to write their own copy and edit it. No longer do you need skilled writers because it is now cheap and easy! Hire a creative producer, video editor, cameraperson, graphic designer; you’ll be glad you did!

  13. “There are not a whole lot of people who have done this job in the past who know how to do it well now”

    The same can be said for the video and audio professions. I’m certain you wouldn’t feel the same if someone were saying how easy it is for anyone to create ad campaigns now on their own. Just as Word doesn’t make one a copy editor, neither does owning a camera and iMove make one a cinematographer or video editor.

    If video is the ‘crown jewel’, then mickey mouse’ing it by shoving a camera in a copy editor or account agent’s hand is not going to impress clients. It’s going to get you by until your competition goes out and hires a professional and leaves your client asking “Why didn’t I get THAT?”

  14. Phil Lip says:

    Why not get into video editing? Lots of shooters and editors like me are bypassing agencies and going to the end-user (creator of product or service) directly. Most small businesses don’t require the assistance (and cannot afford the fees) of a full-blown, brick and mortar ad agency, especially when the promo is destined for the web.

    So things are changing on both sides and those who will ultimately survive are adapting to those changes today.

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