Time to Fire Your Marketing Director? #VideoMKE

Attention Era, Changing Times, Leadership Thoughts, Marketing, Milwaukee, Presentations, Social Media No Comments »

Why are so few companies using video for marketing? It’s ridiculous!

Someone needs to get fired.

As a director and producer, video marketing is a topic I’m very passionate about. I am biased, but what better way to connect people to your voice and your soul? Short of connecting face-to-face, there’s nothing better.

It’s expensive. Right?

Grumpy Cat on Video Marketing

Wrong. Professional video production costs have dropped significantly in the past five years. Limited budget? There are so many tools. Everyone has an HD video camera on their smart phone. How does every random band in America have multiple music videos? Heck, even cats have their own videos.

Why doesn’t your business?

Gone are the days of expensive media (VHS, DVD, etc.), all these new video apps like Vine, Instagram, Snapchat, and YouTube are free.


But what about Business to Business (B2B) marketing?

B2B clients are people too. Video works for everything. Anytime you have people involved, they are moved to action by passion, information, people, and music, all core strengths of video as a medium. I challenge you to post one marketing scenario in the comments below where video marketing would not work.

Need examples? One small (but growing) business who sells directly to consumers and other businesses is basically putting on a clinic about how to use video…and it’s working. Take a peek at Johnson Creek Enterprises:

“How to” videos (5,500 customers know how to use their new item)

Company soul (2,200 spent 8 minutes watching what kind of company this is)

Unboxing (2,900 customers more comfortable with making a purchase)

Product launch (2,400 now aware that this company listens to requests)

Celebrating milestones (3,500 fans learned that this company has exciting plans ahead)

Of course these are just a couple examples from one company. Hardly proof, but they’re not Exxon Mobil. You don’t need millions of views (or dollars) to make video work for you.

Now lets get back to the whole business of firing one’s marketing director. Great leaders use their intuition and look around them. If you need to read a blog post like this to know you’re missing the boat, you probably shouldn’t be on it.  Video allows brands to share passionate, personal, relevant pieces of content for their community for free. 

If you don’t know that by now, then yes, it’s probably time to find a different line of work. This is old news. Boring.

Video marketing isn’t even experimental. It’s a clear cut way to reach people with your message in an increasingly connected and visual world.

If you’re not paying attention to trends, you need to get a different job.

Sorry for the rant tonight,

Aaron @Biebert


PS. I’m not criticizing people that don’t know how. I’m criticizing people that don’t want to know how.

If you’re in the Milwaukee area, I’m giving two free talks at the American Marketing Association and Social Media Club on the subject as part of my #VideoMKE series. Feel free to join us.

Here’s the fun trailer we put together:



Get future posts by subscribing to “Thoughts from an 8pm Warrior” via email for free. For more of my marketing thoughts or to discuss a video project, visit AttentionEra.com or follow @AttentionEra on Twitter.

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YouTube Changes to Integrate with Google+, Twitter & Facebook Videos

Attention Era, Milwaukee, News, Social Media 11 Comments »

YouTube is more than cute animal videos, funny stuff, and stupid stunts. It grew up today.

Ignore at your own risk.

Any 8pm Warrior trying to get their message out or sell a remarkable service should be using YouTube.  Video cameras are built into nearly every smart phone and nothing captures the personality of a business like video.  Nothing.

I’m sharing from experience as a producer of several online shows and video productions that were created to build community and sell a product in a social savvy way.  Video changes the game.

Here’s why YouTube matters:

  • YouTube is the #2 search engine in the world (think SEO)
  • It is the largest video-based social network
  • Google+ is now integrated even closer with YouTube for additional community building (more on the way)
  • YouTube is simple to use and even offers a free video editing feature
  • Video is perfect for the Attention Era

YouTube made widespread changes to their channel formats today and I think it changes everything.  In the past it was millions of chaotic channels with long lists of video uploads that were hard to understand or group together.  Email subscription was the best way to keep up.  It was barely social.

That all changed today.

In what was probably the biggest upgrade since Google bought YouTube, channels can be restructured to display videos in the form of a series, much like a television network groups their shows together for DVR or On Demand.  It even tracks which episodes you’ve already watched in a series.

Each YouTube account also has a news feed feature, much like other social networks. To make it more social, the new YouTube is even more integrated with Google+, Facebook, and Twitter.  This makes it much easier for interested viewers to subscribe and interact with brands or personalities that they enjoy.  It keeps each channel fresh, even when no new videos are posted.

It’s a lot more like TV now.  It’s how it should be.

I really like it.

Channels Using the New YouTube Channel Upgrade

You can see screenshots of the new upgrades below:

New YouTube Channel Design



New YouTube News Feed with Google+ Integration



If you have any questions about the new YouTube upgrade, feel free to post the questions below, on the 8pm Warriors Facebook discussion forum, or on twitter @Biebert. I’ll do my best to answer or point you in the right direction.

Have a great night,


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Leaders Should be Leadership Experts First

Leadership Thoughts, Milwaukee, Teamwork 15 Comments »

Surprisingly, I’ve met many leaders who don’t care much about leadership.  They would rather be an expert in their “primary function” such as marketing, finance, sales, or engineering. Leadership is a distraction to them.

They’re wrong.

If your role is to lead people in a particular functional division, you must be a leader first.  Your passion must be your people, your team. Not the function.

When you become a leader, you must change your focus from functional expertise, to leading others towards that expertise and success.  Leading your flock means more than just flapping your wings stronger, faster, or longer than before.  You must set the direction.

You must lead first.

If you’re a CFO, I believe you must lead the finance people, not be the lead finance person.  If you are the CMO, you must become great at leading marketing people, not being one.

Function follows leadership.

No one wants to follow a great accountant.  They want to follow a great leader.

Never forget that.

Have a great night


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Crowdsourcing a Hiring Decision? This Has Gone Too Far!

Bravery, Changing Times, Marketing, Milwaukee 9 Comments »


The problem is that I don’t know and I’m not going to let fear hold me back. I’m not sure anyone has ever used twitter to hold public interviews before, so I’d like to hear your thoughts on this. (No hate speech please)

Let’s start with why I’m doing it and then see if you’d like to help me:

1) I could really use help

For a full-time entry-level position in Social Media with no education or experience requirements, I anticipated 1000 to 2000 resumes within a week.  With my current time constraints there was no way I was going to make the right decision out of that pile.

Great people would be missed.  A mistake would happen.

Since I’m wrong 90% of the time, I take all the help I can get.  By doing this publicly, fellow 8pm Warriors have stepped in to make sure I’m not missing something.  Andrew kicked off the informal crowdsourcing session today by offering some commentary and advice. Tiffany then offered analysis and helped me pick up on something I missed.

This could work.

2) I am passionate about picking the right person

My latest venture led me to serve as Executive Producer of two new shows.  We’ve got big plans for taking them national and we’re passionately building two of the largest free real estate resources to help heal the real estate industry, build communities, and open the doors to future opportunities for everyone involved.

Momentum is key and I feel like now’s the time to strike while the iron is hot.  I just need the right help.

To reach my life’s goal and enjoy my work, we’ll need to assemble the right team. This includes entry-level team members too.

No one is ever dispensable in my leadership philosophy.  I hire for the long term and it is a devastating failure to me when people must be laid off or fired.  I take full responsibility.  I either hired the wrong person (my mistake) or made a decision (or lack of one) that hurt our ability to continue operating at our current staffing level.

Hopefully with your help I’ll make the right decision.

3)  I want to do this quickly

No waiting.  This allows everyone to participate in the interview when they can fit in a tweet or two.  It also avoids wasting anyone’s time. If you don’t like my style it’s an easy exit.

4)  It weeds out poor candidates

There is more to a person than a resume.  I only want the candidates who are brave, tech savvy, and not afraid of the public.  If we’re going big with these projects, then I need someone who is not afraid to be in videos, tweets, emails and other forms of public communication.  

I need to find a Mini Megan Berry!

5)  I want you to hire the people I don’t hire.

This is key.

I know some of my fellow 8pm Warriors would like to hire a solid entry level marketing associate for $25,000/year but are scared of wasting time in the process.  Once I’m done, I’ll end up with enough great candidates to share with other business leaders in the area.

I’ve been able to conduct 8 initial interviews, with more on the way.  Here’s the cast so far (in order of appearance):

If you’d like to help me out, feel free to follow them on Twitter and share your thoughts with me here.  I’d love to hear your two cents and/or have you vote for your favorite candidate either on Twitter or in the comment section.

If you feel sorry for them and just want to help them out.  Don’t just complain about my method, help them get a job.  They all seem like excellent candidates and I’d like everyone to win.

Have a great night,


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Warrior of the Week: Governor Scott Walker

8pm Warriors, Bravery, Milwaukee, News, Warrior of the Week 4 Comments »

“Elections have consequences” – Barrack Obama

I agree with President Obama’s statement, but rarely do elections mean different results.  Even though parties may change, the business of government rarely does.

One 8pm Warrior aims to change that.

Meet Scott Walker, Governor of Wisconsin and this week’s 8pm Warrior of the Week.

Like his policies or not (I wasn’t a big fan of killing high speed rail), you have to give him credit for doing what he promised and working towards the financial reform he was elected for.

  • He makes difficult decisions.
  • He does his job, even when it makes enemies with powerful people.
  • He walks his talk.

He’s barely been in Madison for a month, and he’s already got 70,000 union members protesting his plans to cut the state budget and change the way unions control the government.  It reminds me of Greece and Paris lately.  No doubt that tough times are ahead for him, but I believe that if you’re not making someone uncomfortable, you’re probably not making real changes.

It’s his job.

He was elected 52% to 46% by campaigning to make these sorts of significant changes in a State facing a $3,000,000,000 budget shortfall.  Now he’s working hard and fast to complete needed changes quickly, much like 8pm Warriors around the country have to do every day to survive and thrive.  That’s why Governor Scott Walker is this week’s 8pm Warrior of the Week.

Learn more about Governor Scott Walker:

Have a great night,


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The Thing About Unions: An 8pm Warrior Protest

Milwaukee 4 Comments »

In the “old days” 13 year old kids were getting their arms chopped off in unsafe factories working for pennies.  I think we can all agree that a union of workers was understandable and needed for physical safety.

The world is different now.

Workplaces are now protected by laws and the threat of litigation.  Pay is protected by the demand for talented individuals.  Consequently, unions have slowly lost their usefulness for talented people and have been in a steady state of decline.  Meanwhile, 8pm Warriors around the world are struggling to make their way in this world with no guarantees, no pensions, no protection…a far cry from those in unions.  All we have is our talent, our ideas, and ambition…

So you can imagine my irritation when I woke up at my hotel in Chicago this morning and saw my home state on the front cover of the USA Today.  Here’s the situation.

I don’t normally comment on my feelings for unions because some of my leadership positions have required a good working relationship with them.  However, I feel compelled to say something because the schools in Wisconsin are shutting down as members of the teacher’s union drive students to the capitol to protest and some of our lawmakers are sitting in hotels somewhere in Chicago to avoid doing their jobs.

40,000 people are protesting in Madison, while almost 30,000,000 Americans have no jobs.

It’s ridiculous.

Since when does it make sense that public employees should be allowed more job security and less productivity requirements at the same time?  The governor is willing to avoid layoffs if these concessions are made.  But it’s not enough.

We’ve got a union problem, and your state will too…

Here are my 8pm Warrior protest demands:

  • Teachers should teach, or let unemployed teachers take their jobs.  Protest on weekends like the rest of us.
  • Lawmakers should cast votes.  If they don’t like the outcomes, they can blame the voters who voted for the “other side”.
  • Taxpayers need to demand efficiency and a balanced budget from their government.

Do you agree?

Have a great night,


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Warrior of the Week: Ryan J. Sheets

8pm Warriors, Milwaukee, Staffing, Warrior of the Week 2 Comments »

Meet Ryan J. Sheets, the VP & COO of Clear Medical Solutions, an innovative healthcare staffing & consulting firm that is changing the healthcare world.

Ryan is the best person I have ever worked with.  Ever.

  • He’s always thinking.
  • Every client loves working with him.
  • Every team member loves working for him.

Healthcare is a 24/7 world, and Ryan has given up thousands of hours of sleep and “personal time” to support his team or help with complex client needs, regardless of what hour they may pop up.

Sometimes he’s a 3am Warrior.

Yet, never does he complain.  Never does he snap on his colleagues or clients, no matter what they do.  He gives.  He gives. And then he gives more.  Just when you think there is no more to give…

…he gives some more.

He’s a true servant leader and his passion for people is helping change an industry.  This probably sounds ridiculous, but after working with thousands of people, he is the best I have ever worked with.

That’s why he’s this week’s 8pm Warrior of the Week.

If you know another 8pm Warrior that deserves to be featured, please let us know by sharing a link to their blog/website in the comment section, tweeting @8pmWarrior, or posting info on the 8pm Warrior facebook forum.

Have a great night!


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Welcome Home Harley Riders!

Milwaukee No Comments »

For those of you who live in Milwaukee, you may have noticed the roughly 200,000 motorcycles rolling through the streets of our home town. You may know that this weekend is the 105th Birthday Party for Harley-Davidson, but after watching the parade this morning, I believe that this event is something much bigger. This is one of the biggest events ever for Greater Milwaukee.

This evening over 100,000 people are watching Bruce Springsteen, and also more than 125,000 tickets were sold to “Harley Fest” at the Summerfest grounds. For comparison’s sake, that is more tourists than the Super Bowl or Olympic Opening Ceremonies. But when will we ever see a successful bid for an Olympic Games or find ourselves the selected city to host a Super Bowl. Not any time soon…

With food, drinks, lodging, fuel, and event tickets all being purchased right here is our local economy, this event is bringing millions of dollars of sales to our local businesses. Not to mention that all the great things we love our about Milwaukee will be on showcase for visitors from all 50 States and over 30 countries!

All in all, this week, there will be about 200,000 motorcycles and even more visitors to the city, and we should be thankful and eager to welcome them!
2013 Thoughts from an 8pm Warrior. Mass email sender .