Why Your Company Should Consider Joining Discussion Boards and Forums

By | advertising, Brand marketing, content marketing, Utah, Utah SEO | No Comments

They may not always look pretty online, but some of the top results for Google and other search engine searches bring browsers to online discussion boards and forums. While these boards don’t look authentic aesthetically, some of the posts you find within can be everything you need! Whether it’s a location you are trying to find that is off the maps or a specific recipe, some of the best and most personal answers on the internet are found on discussion boards and forums.

So how can your company utilize a resource like this? Do just as any digital marketing company would tell you to, create an account and interact with real people that are looking up things that relate to your company.

WHY?

The next question you may face is, “why?” What reasons are there for a company to put in the effort to get on the various boards and forums and start interacting? The answer is the same as why companies comment and talk to others on social media channels: exposure.

When you interact with others on social media, your contribution automatically builds a bridge with the users that see what you’ve said and they are then left with an impression (ideally a good one). These interactions are anything from making a relevant comment on someone else’s Instagram post to quote tweeting something on Twitter. It is already common knowledge that there are marketing companies, digital and social media focused, that include these efforts into their everyday marketing responsibilities. However, you should find it as no surprise that there are other marketing companies that do the same thing on discussion boards and forums.

In addition to an increase in exposure, when individuals in the cyberverse see your company making meaningful or humorous contributions online, they are going to create a relationship with you. Whether they follow you or not, an impression is built. When online interaction is done right by a company, most online users will simply see the company as a transparent, inclusive and genuine company that they can relate to.

Another Platform

Look, making contributions on discussion boards and forums is not that different from making contributions on social media channels, it’s just like another “social” platform. We’ve already explained that contributions on social platforms increases companies’ exposure and gives something online users can relate to, and it’s no different with these forums and discussion boards. Marketing companies that are ahead of the curve are making these contributions online already for their clients and you can do the same for your company, it might just take some research.

There is nothing stopping you from researching some forums and discussion boards that relate to your company’s products and services, but if you need any help with your marketing efforts, contact a marketing company like our own, Fusion 360.

The Basics of a Marketing Plan

By | advertising, Brand marketing, Utah, Utah SEO | No Comments

Marketing companies need to come up with effective marketing plans if they really want to nail down their target audience and know how they’re going to accomplish their business goals, as well as what those goals are. While these marketing plans are an essential aspect of any successful business, smaller businesses can find the task to be daunting, leading them to ignore the creation of a basic marketing plan altogether. Failing to make a marketing plan can be detrimental to a company, but marketing companies can help create a simple yet effective marketing plan to ensure that these smaller businesses don’t miss out on any marketing opportunities.

So, how exactly do marketing companies help businesses come up with a marketing plan? Well, it all comes down to the basics.

Researching Your Potential Market

Research is the backbone of any successful marketing plan. From product research to researching your target market, you have to put in a ton of time if you want to craft a strategy that can guarantee you results. Marketing companies are great to consult with about solid research, but you can also find resources online that will help you identify consumer buying habits in the industry, market size, market growth and decline, and current trends.

When it comes to your target audience, a well-defined audience description will help identify who your buyers are. Marketing companies recommend that you discuss at least two different levels of segmentation.

Identifying Your Budget

Budgets are where most businesses run into issues. Marketing companies suggest that when coming up with a basic marketing plan you put together a month-by-month schedule of what you plan to spend on your marketing efforts. Another important aspect when it comes to a budget is setting up a “red light” decision point. For example, establish a metric that tells you when you should stop if you’re not generating sufficient ROI.

Planning Your Tactics

To create a solid marketing plan, you want to make sure that your company creates specific tactics and then follows through. Tactics are actions that you have to take to help you accomplish your goals. One tactic that a business might use is deciding how they might utilize direct mail, email marketing, online advertising, case studies, social media marketing, and/or sponsorships.

Creating a marketing plan doesn’t have to be complicated to start, and as you get more accustomed to it, marketing companies can help you create more complex plans. If you’re in need of a marketing company to help you create a successful marketing plan, give us a call here at Fusion 360.

Lighting 101: Three-Point Lighting

By | advertising, Utah, Utah SEO, video production | No Comments

When an individual first start learning about lighting techniques, one of the first lessons they’ll learn will be about three-point lighting. By implementing this technique, they can take their video (or photo) shoot from an amateur level to a professional level. The thing is though, they can’t just set up three different lights anywhere around the on-scene subject and call it good, they need a little more instruction.

The three different lights consist of the key, fill and back light. As a video production company that shoots professional-grade videos, we understand the importance of the proper use of these three lights. We’ll expand on the role of each of these lights and how you can use them appropriately.

Key Light

As you may expect, there is a light that is going to act as the primary light to brighten up the subject of the shot, and this main light is known as the key light. However, this light doesn’t sit on top of or right next to the camera, but is placed off a ways to the right or left side of the camera — sometimes at a 45° angle. Amateurs may bring a light to their shoot but may not understand that a key light on its own might overexpose the shot. Video production companies and other professionals know that they need another light or two to balance out their shot.

Fill Light

The way professionals and video production companies control the effect of the lighting is by adding a fill light to the shot. In comparison, a fill light is much dimmer than the key light but it lightens up the shaded areas that are created by the key light. When you shoot with a key light and no fill light, you encounter harsh shadows that will oftentimes darken one side of a person’s face or other areas of a different subject. With a fill light placed on the other side of the camera (opposite of the key light), you can brighten up those shaded parts. Depending on how bright or dim you want the fill light, you ultimately control how soft or harsh the shadows will be.

Back Light

The two lights already mentioned really control how a subject appears behind the camera, but the third light, the back light, adds one extra dimension that completes the shot as a whole. This back light, also known as the rim light or hair light, is usually placed behind the subject but raised up above the camera’s view, casting light down from above the shot. Sometimes, video production companies and other professionals substitute the back light with the sun but then use a reflector or foam board to decrease the sun’s intensity. With light coming from above, there is more depth to the shot and the subject will look less two-dimensional.

Whether your a professional that works with a video production company or an individual with zero shooting experience, everyone understands that lighting enhances a shot. However, without three-point lighting, the end result will be missing that much-needed professional level. For any help with creating a professional video for your company, contact us today.

The Best Video Editing Software of 2019

By | advertising, Brand marketing, content marketing, SEO, Utah, video production | No Comments

Depending on your needs, the best video editing software is going to differ from that of someone else. Speaking in absolutes — “the BEST” — assumes that everyone has the same needs, however, the fact of the matter is that it’s a case by case situation.

If you are a beginner, you will not need advanced software, and a professional at a video production company is going to need something different than that of an editor in Hollywood. The needs of an Apple user that heavily relies on Apple products may alter significantly from PC users. be different as well. While the needs are going to differ from person to person, there are some characteristics and capabilities that set certain software apart from the rest. Here is what we think are the most recognized programs that give users the ability to do what they need in the most efficient way.

TWO DOMINANT EDITING PROGRAMS

We are four months into 2019 and video production companies still agree that Adobe’s Premiere Pro and Apple’s Final Cut Pro are the “best” editing software for professionals.

PREMIERE PRO — The reason this is oftentimes the first software people will talk about is because of its ability to support a variety of different formats, cameras, and devices, and its ability to work on multiple platforms. Further, Premiere runs on Macs and PC computers without difficulty. Whether its a commercial made by a video production company or a feature film made for the big screens, the advanced editing capabilities work for both. With the latest update to the program in 2018, editors are able to use HDR media, playback media faster, and still utilize its other main features (like precise color grading, VR editing, and audio layering). In addition to all of this, using Premiere is convenient if you use any other Adobe products.

FINAL CUT PRO — Apple’s highest quality editing program has a lot of similarities with Adobe’s Premiere. Like Adobe’s ability to work great with other Adobe products, obviously, Final Cut works nicely with other Apple software. It also supports HDR and RAW formats and a lot of other interfaces. As time passes, while Final Cut can execute some advanced editing, it is starting to be seen as a good developmental program.

We mention these two programs first because these are what the professionals at video production companies are using, and they will give you more capabilities than anything else. Nonetheless, as we said before, the needs of each person or entity are different. That being the case, beginners may not need Premiere Pro or Final Cut Pro, and Hollywood editors may need other editing software that specializes in CGI, 3D effects, and more.

OTHER Software for OTHER NEEDS

Here is a simple list of other software that beginners and/or Hollywood editors may consider to be a better program for their needs.

FOR BEGINNERS:

  • Avidemux
  • Shotcut
  • Rocketium
  • Nero Standard
  • Davinci Resolve
  • Video Pro X
  • Wideo
  • MacXvideo
  • Lightworks

FOR HOLLYWOOD PROs:

  • SynthEyes
  • PFTrack
  • Mocha
  • Boujou
  • Houdini
  • RealFlow
  • 3D Studio Max
  • Cinema 4D
  • Maya
  • Adobe After Effects

While these different programs may not be used by professional video production companies, they will still accomplish similar things for beginners and accomplish more for the industry leading professionals in Hollywood. Ultimately, there is a lot of different editing software, but based on your level and needs, the best program may differ from someone else. However, many video production companies, like us here at Fusion 360, would say that Adobe’s Premiere Pro is the best program to use in 2019.

Latest Social Media Trends

By | content marketing, digital marketing, marketing, Social Media, Utah | No Comments

Just like all forms of technology, social media is constantly changing and evolving. As the platforms continue to change, so do the current social media trends. Popular social media tactics from three years ago are now outdated, and with social media users being such a trend-following audience, your social media marketing strategies need to be trendy as well. Here are some of the latest social media trends that social media marketing companies have been following.

Stories

Snapchat was the original creator of the “Stories” feature, but platforms like Instagram and Facebook have adopted this feature, and have done a fantastic job with it. Stories started as basic 15-second videos showing funny moments or behind-the-scenes content, but have now evolved to branded storytelling snippets. A recent study found that stories are growing 15 times faster than feed-based sharing, and in the next year could surpass feeds as the primary way social users share content with their followers. Because of this, social media marketing companies suggest that every brand be actively making some type of story, as it is a great way to engage with your audience and let them get an inside look at your brand.

Creative Advertising

With so many brands participating in the social ads trend, social media marketing companies have found that in order to successfully advertise on the platforms, you need to increase your ad budget. In addition to just increasing your ad budget, your social ads need to be as creative and engaging as possible.

Companies like Spotify and Netflix have done a great job with their social ads, as they feel more personal and entertaining. Their ads help generate user discussion and engagement, instead of placing a boring banner ad into user’s news feeds just to create awareness. The more creative your advertisement is, the more successful it’s going to be.

Private Communities

Many brands are choosing to create private communities for their audience and customers. These private communities primarily exist on Facebook, as you can create Facebook Groups and even Secret Groups for members to chat with one another. Social media marketing companies have found that creating a Facebook Group can help your brand address niche interests and target superfans of your brand. You can facilitate conversations that are related to your brand and industry, however, don’t advertise or pitch products to these private communities.

Video Content

Posting video content on social media has been a trend for a little over the past year, and it’s not going away anytime soon. Video content has been characterized as a “super-trend”, and for good reason. Video content can be posted in a few different ways, but some popular video formats include live videos, stories, native videos and interactive videos. If you choose to post videos (which you should), try to make the first ten seconds as interesting and entertaining as possible. This is where you have the opportunity to capture as many user’s attention as possible.

By following these social media trends, you can be incredibly successful with your social media marketing and build up your audience. For more tips on social media marketing, contact a social media marketing company near you.

Can a Marketing Company Supplement an In-House Marketing Team?

By | content marketing, digital marketing, SEO, Social Media, Utah | No Comments

Every company markets its product and service somehow, but the way they do that differs from place to place. A small bakery might leave signs outside their door or post things on their website, both tactics are a form of marketing. Other companies might turn to marketing companies that specialize in a specific type of marketing. Then, there are the larger companies that can support their own in-house marketing team in order to carry out their needs. However, is there ever a time for companies (big or small) that have their own in-house team to rely on a marketing company?

The answer is — YES! — and you can find out why from the sections included below.

The Effect of Marketing Varieties

When a company builds up its own marketing department, they are going to take care of the companies immediate marketing needs. Depending on the company, these immediate needs are going to differ from company to company. To some, the first thing they will look to establish in an online presence and a solid public relations effort, but another might want to focus on their point of purchase and branding. After that though, they may not have the budget or constant need to fill positions that focus on any other marketing need.

A company may have marketers focusing their day to day work on direct marketing and point of purchase marketing aspects, but might not be doing anything to advertise their product or help their social and online presence. Marketers that know about product placement, brand recognition and how to sell their company’s product directly may not know how to make their company look good on social media. Maybe they do, but what about SEO and content marketing? These other marketing aspects may not be critical enough for the company to hire full-time employees for the work but might be important enough to outsource to a marketing company.

Knowledge and Experience

Perhaps the company has found a handful of marketing gurus that have a vast understanding of all common marketing concepts, but do they have the experience? When a company outsources a certain part of their marketing efforts, they have the assurance that the marketing company they hire specializes in what they need. This gives the company new insight and results that they wouldn’t see otherwise.

Timing

We have a separate blog post that lays out other reasons marketing companies are used by in-house teams and two of the reasons found there have to do with timing. There are stints during which a company suffers at the hand of turnover, and during these hard moments, a company can turn to a marketing company for help. Further, there are periods in which there is a surge of work for the company. Whenever there is a time where it is hard to accomplish all the work, companies can definitely benefit from the help of a marketing firm.

Summary

There are multiple reasons in-house teams still utilize the resources that come from a marketing company, and these are just a few. If your company needs any marketing help with SEO, social, branding, film or web, contact us at Fusion 360.

The Top Social Media Sites for your E-Commerce Store

By | content marketing, digital marketing, marketing, SEO, Utah | No Comments

Social media has become more than just a place to socialize with our friends and family, it has become a necessity for businesses to use in order to grow and tap into new markets. Marketing companies know that these sites are crucial marketing goldmines; if companies know how to utilize them, they will reap the benefits.

So, which social media sites should you be using for your e-commerce business? Should you be tweeting about your products, uploading pictures to show them off on Instagram, or posting about them on Facebook for your friends and family to see? We here at Fusion 360 agency have come up with a guide on which sites are best when it comes to promoting your e-commerce business.

Facebook

If you’re a regular Facebook user, you might notice that there are tons of ads for products and services being pushed on the platform. While sponsored posts are present on all major platforms, Facebook pushes businesses more than these other platforms and even offers various marketplace pages which can be utilized by marketing companies and businesses to promote their brand.

It’s recommended by marketing companies that you post at least two updates per day to promote your business, and that you utilize Facebook’s Dynamic Ads, which tracks a user’s browsing information to provide targeted product advertisements.

Instagram

Instagram is a more photo-heavy platform, which is great for showing off your product or service through amazing visuals. Marketing companies also know that Instagram is an influencer-driven platform, so it’s important for businesses to invest in influencers to take photos with a specific brand’s product in order to get the audience’s attention.

Another cool feature that Instagram offers is the ability to allow users to click on a picture that will redirect them to the company’s website, making it easier to purchase a product.

Twitter

When on Twitter, it’s best to keep it short. People use this platform for brief text, videos and images, so you should focus on visuals and on a strong, short-form quote related to your industry. Apart from posting the visual content directly to the site, you could also link to your website through a text tweet. One differentiating factor between Twitter and the other big platforms is that it acts as a customer service support channel, so make sure that you utilize that to your advantage.

Snapchat

Snapchat is a good way to offer quick, behind-the-scenes content, teasers and upcoming promotions when it comes to product releases. Snapchat is a great platform because it allows for ads and customized geofilters, which can make your brand seem more personal.

These platforms are the best ways to grow your e-commerce business today, and marketing companies can help you get started. Give us a call here at Fusion 360 if you’re ready to take the next step in your digital marketing endeavors.

Path to a Career in Video Production

By | advertising, content marketing, digital marketing, Social Media, Utah, video production | No Comments

If you are wanting to pursue a career in video production, you might be wondering where you should start. Video production is a highly technical profession that requires a lot of practice and experience. As it has become an increasingly growing field, your video skills need to be top notch in order to make it in the video industry. This means that you should consistently be practicing and improving your video production skills. Video production companies are looking to hire the best of the best, so if you are wanting to work with a production company, here are some steps you should follow.

Degree in Film or Communication

Most colleges offer film programs, so if you choose to attend college, think about pursuing a degree in Film or Communication. Depending on your university, the film program might be part of a specific major, so do some research to figure out the best way to get the film education you need. While at school, do your best to volunteer or help out on amateur or student film sets. This will help give you more experience and get used to what a video production set is like. You can also find mentors who are more experienced to help guide and teach you everything you need to know.

Teach Yourself

Although video production companies recommend getting a degree in Film, it is also possible to teach yourself everything about video production. With so many online resources available to you (some even for free), teaching yourself video production is very doable. If you choose to teach yourself, make sure you familiarize yourself with many aspects of production. This includes cameras, lighting, editing and more. Try to find as many opportunities to go out and shoot as possible. A lot of freelance video producers were self-taught, and their skills are just as good as some of the professionals who received film degrees. What matters most is your experience, not your degree.

Internships

Internships are a great way to get more experience in video production. A lot of video production companies offer internships. By taking an internship, you can get real-world experience and learn how professional production companies run. In addition, taking an internship could lead to making connections in the video industry as well as full-time work opportunities with that production company.

Career

Once you have gained all the necessary experience, you can settle down with either a production company or work freelance. With freelance work, you probably won’t have a consistent schedule, and you will most likely work on smaller projects. With a video production company, you could be working on content ranging from commercials to big movie productions. Both freelancers and production companies are in high demand, so it’s up to you to decide which path you want to take.

Video production is constantly shifting and evolving, so you must always be willing to learn new things. Overall, a career in video production is obtainable if you are willing to put in the work! For more information on careers in video production, contact a video production company like us here at Fusion 360 Studios.

Roles Within a Video Production Company

By | content marketing, digital marketing, marketing, Utah | No Comments

The size and positions with a video production company can vary significantly. Depending on the industry and size of the company, you might see as many as 15 different occupational positions or as little as 5 positions. The purpose and budget of the client’s video are going to ultimately dictate what kind of video production company they go with. Here is a look at what a big and small production company looks like.

Full Production Companies

Before we lay out all the different roles, it is also worth noting that not all of the positions are filled by just one individual either, several roles may require a number of individuals performing the same work. In addition, a video production company of this size aren’t going to be creating dinky commercials for local channels, but something as big as a nation-wide movie production. Without further ado, here is our list of all the different roles within a big-time production company.

Producer – The individuals that communicates with the client and arranges the production.
Director – The individual that envision the production and makes it come to life.
Screenwriter – The individuals that write the copy and lines for the entire production.
Production Designer – The individuals that translate the vision and copy into a storyboard.
Art Director – The individual that is responsible for the design of each scene’s setting.
Director of Photography – The individual that oversees the visual outcome of every shot.
Camera Operator – The individuals that are in control of the camera.
Digital Imaging Technician (DIT) – The individual that ensures the camera’s color is correct.
Lighting Director – The individual that makes sure that the lighting looks right in each shot.
Boom Operator – The individual that is in charge of the microphones used on set.
Gaffer – The individual that executes every electrical-related factor in a production.
Audio Technician – The individual that oversees everything related to sound.
Lead Editor – The individual that compiles the shots and edits them so they run smoothly.
Production Assistant – The special individual that runs errands for everyone on set.

While this seems like an exhaustive list, this doesn’t cover every position out there; we haven’t mentioned all the positions related to the Talent, Foley Artists, Animators, Key Grip Specialist, etc. — now you know why credits are so long! Obviously, with a video production company that fills all 15 of these different roles, you are dealing with a media company equivalent to the ones found in Hollywood. If you’ve found one that is not quite Hollywood-level but close, you can expect the video to still be grand, more technical and cost a lot!

Smaller Production Companies

While the spread is quite large between a full production company and a local one, you can still receive great quality work from smaller production companies. Typically, individuals that work at a smaller video production company will wear multiple hats. For example, you might see one person act as the producer, director, screenwriter and production designer, and another that operates all the cameras, set up the light and microphones, and make sure everything is working electrically. However, you can see their sample work and find that they are still able to produce what companies need.

If you are looking for a production company to help you with creating a corporate video, brand film, social video, commercial or anything else, contact us here at Fusion 360.

Production Companies vs. In-House Video Teams

By | content marketing, marketing, SEO, Utah | No Comments

Video content continues to dominate social media pages and the digital world. More and more companies are putting stock into video productions by building out teams that can create content that shows off their product and brand. At the same time, there are more video production companies than ever before.

In-house production teams and video production companies are both going to create solid video content for the miscellaneous video platforms, however, is one better than the other? While there may be factors that can be argued one way or the other, everything comes down to how much money the entity that is looking to create video content has. After that, you can find positives and negatives for both sides.

Let’s dive in and simply explore the possibilities that each side provides, starting with in-house teams.

In-House Benefits and Shortcomings

If a company builds an in-house video production team, they should have the confidence to execute everything they want when they want. An in-house team should know their company’s brand inside and out, further, they should know what the vision and expectations are. This knowledge should help them make a video that displays their company’s brand, product or message exactly how they want it.

While it is nice to have a team within the company working on the various video projects that the company needs, they can have some shortcomings. As mentioned before, the company’s budget will dictate what kind of personnel they will be able to hire, the quality of equipment they will have access to, and ultimately how much they can spend on their projects. That limitation can restrict what types of videos the team can create and how well the videos will be made.

As a result, a company that builds a production team should be sure they have the budget to house the individuals that will be able to create the type of videos they need. If they look to do something more, they might start hitting a ceiling with their own abilities and will need to turn to a video production company.

Video Production Companies

When a company relies on a production company to help them create video content for them, they should be able to find a production team that is right for them. What we mean by this is, there is a variety of video production companies and each one will vary in quality and experience; it’s the same as before, the larger the budget, the higher the quality. However, in comparison to an in-house team, a production company will likely have more experience, equipment and resources.

Considering a video production company’s niche is video, they are going to be able to create a wider variety of videos and have access to more equipment. In addition, they are going to know talent agencies, filming locations, certain individuals that specialize in a specific aspect of video, and other unique resources. Instead of focusing on one product or company, these video production companies are creating video content for multiple entities that need a higher level of quality in their production, or for smaller businesses that can’t hire out their own team. Even though these companies may not work full-time on just one product or service, they still can execute everything their client needs.

Deciding which of the two types of video production groups are better really comes down to the needs of the company. As a video production company ourselves, we may be a little bias (we are the better option, of course), but if you have any other video questions, read more from our blog or contact us today.