The lure of an eye-catching image is undeniable. Powerful images draw eyeballs.
On the other hand, every seasoned marketer knows full well that even a truly great narrative can be torpedoed by poor-quality photos. When audiences scan for content, any ineffective use of imagery automatically taints the perception of the written word. Over the years, Taryn Covrigaru, founder and CEO of O Hello Media, has worked to ensure that clients have reliable photographers and videographers on the ground at events around the world. She shares her experiences with DMNews readers.
Q: What products or services do you sell?
A: O Hello Media captures and produces global videography and photography that creates a lasting impression. Through intentional creative services, O Hello Media identifies, articulates, and brings to life purposeful storytelling for brands and experiential marketers through elevated visual content.
Q: What is your business known for?
A: O Hello Media is known for its global network of visual content creators, task mastery, and consistency.
We have curated a global network of more than 250 highly experienced and skilled photographers and videographers across the country. We’ve found incredibly talented people in select international markets, too. We handpicked these people based on their unique abilities. They’re able to capture brand stories in an impactful way.
From there, brand marketers achieve task mastery because the cumbersome tasks associated with planning for and overseeing a successful video shoot, photo shoot, or marketing initiative to its full creative potential are covered with an unmatched level of detail by our team of project managers and visionaries.
Our team behind the scenes uses the “c(OHM)prehensive” process. We use this to fully understand project goals and level up our client’s marketing superpowers as an extension of their team. This is built on consistency. We offer consistent quality service across our team, a global network of creators, product and creative offerings, and processes.
Q: How did the business get started?
A: I was producing events for brands all over the country. This included hiring high-quality photographers and videographers local to these cities and I struggled to find the right talent.
It was really a challenge to find creators who truly understand what it means to capture the story of a brand experience versus a standard event. There are crucial differences.
I also learned early on that in order to ensure these brand experiences I worked so hard to create were being elevated through imagery in the same way they were elevated as a physical experience, a significant amount of creative direction and oversight would need to be provided.
And, at the time, I didn’t have time or the knowledge to do that.
Consistency also proved to be a challenge in that every new photographer or videographer I hired did things differently. Whether their interaction with me as a client, their quality output, or simply how they delivered the content in the first place.
Thus was born O Hello Media. We not only solve the challenges consistent across the industry, but we also elevate the way brands and event marketers share their stories through visual content.
Q: Why is a video content strategy important for marketers today?
A: Video content marketing is on the rise. A full 85% of businesses are projected to use video this year. With 69% of people preferring to watch a video over reading text, it’s time for marketers and brands to leverage video in their efforts. Creating brand experiences through visual content allows you to build impactful content that establishes an emotional connection with consumers. This, in turn, can be used to influence buying decisions.
Storytelling is an important part of your overall brand strategy. People are more likely to be emotionally impacted by content when they are delivered a story rather than cold hard facts.
While images and written copy are an effective way to tell your story, video allows you to level up your storytelling in a more dynamic way. Creating a visual brand experience provides you with the creative freedom to include music, voice-over, sound clips, and other animated visual elements. This allows the viewer to establish a stronger emotional connection to your message.
Q: How can marketers create compelling, authentic video content?
A: I’ve got four tips for marketers to ensure their desired audience invests more time with their content. These efforts will broaden the reach of the message because it’s having a greater impact on the viewer, and in turn, creates more value.
1. Question everything.
First, take a step back and ensure you can clearly answer questions pertaining to the overall objective for the video. Questions such as:
- What do you want your audience to feel, think, know…in that order…after seeing your content?
- Who will be viewing the video and what is the desired message for that audience?
- What is the use case for this piece of content?
- What does the definition of success look like once the video is out in the world?
2. Explore use cases.
If you’ve identified multiple uses for your video, you might consider creating multiple versions of the video for different platforms and varying end goals. Leveraging your content for multiple use cases is an obvious way to broaden your reach.
First, focus on making your video content impactful and engaging. Then multiply that impact by spreading it across multiple channels and platforms.
3. What’s the story?
Identify the right storyline and visual feel based on the answers you have determined around your desired audience before you have your content creators shoot.
It may seem obvious, but make sure you clearly outline the specific shots required to complete your vision within the shot list.
4. Define the art direction.
Once you’ve clearly identified the story, start to think about the creative elements that are going to enhance the story through your visuals:
- What is the overall look and feel you hope to achieve for the video?
- What type of editing style do you like? (Jump cuts, slow motion, time-lapse moments, etc.)
- What are the mandatory elements that need to be included?
Q: If you could choose one mistake to correct when first starting your business, what would it be?
A: If I had the opportunity to start my business all over again, I would have taken the time to outline the company’s core values and core purpose before doing anything.
I truly believe that a business can’t have a purpose without first establishing its core values. Core values serve as the foundation. Every business decision rests on these, from how you hire, what types of clients you want to work with, your company culture, and the type of projects you are going to take on or say no to.
Q: When choosing the focus of a business, do you recommend following a passion? Or is it better to look for opportunities?
A: You should 100 percent follow your passion when starting a business, but it’s natural and OK to also say yes to most of the opportunities that come your way in order to grow your network and find your niche.
As you continue to grow your business, however, it’s always good to check back in to ensure your passion and business opportunities align. When that alignment happens, magic occurs and you can and should drive business first from passion.
Q: How important would you consider mentorship to be to new entrepreneurs? Did it impact your career path?
A: Mentorship is an absolute must-have for new entrepreneurs, especially for solo entrepreneurs without a business partner.
For solo business owners that work in isolation a lot, mentorship offers you an outlet. You can open yourself up to outside perspectives and learn from others. This will without a doubt help you grow and advance your passions and career.
Q: Name a business leader that you consider to be admirable? Why?
A: Brené Brown. Her truth is inspiring and she honors it every day in her work. She is not above anything. She knows how to connect deeply with people in a way that gets straight to the heart. Talk about creating lasting impressions!
A little non-traditional, but I also really admire Taylor Swift. I most certainly wouldn’t call myself a “Swift-ie.” My admiration isn’t necessarily because of her music, but more so because she advocates for herself and wholeheartedly believes in her art. Taylor Swift understands business. Most recently, her decision to re-record her Red album to regain control over the rights to her songs was brilliant. She’s driven, yet vulnerable.
And lastly, I’m a huge fan of Davis Smith, founder and CEO of outdoor brand Cotopaxi. I had the pleasure of hearing Davis speak at an Entrepreneur’s Organization event. What I love most about him and the organization he runs is that his purpose and passion course through Cotopaxi with such fervor. He wants to make a difference in the world. And he’s doing just that through their values and the actual products they manufacture.
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