RevBoss’ing: Optimizing Lead Gen for Video Production Companies (During a Pandemic)

Note from the editor — we used to do a lot of cold email reviews and we got a lot of positive feedback on the content. We decided to revisit the idea, but instead review our stuff.

How do you produce cinematic quality videos while your clients are working remotely during a pandemic?  Here is how we helped a client ramp up lead generation amidst a big business transition. 

Overview:

We started early in the year with Pensieve Video Productions, a production company that creates Hollywood-quality employee training videos.  With the onset of COVID-19, we scrambled to come up with new solutions to unexpected issues we faced with this client.

Here’s a summary of our initial strategy:

  • Target Company: Industry Agnostic, Global 2000 Companies (10k+ employees)
  • Target Prospect:  HR, Education, Training, Development, Senior (Director, Founder, Owner) titles
  • Messaging Strategy: Citing big name brands to lend credibility and past experience, while using a creative angle to showcase the benefits of cinematic storytelling in training videos as it relates to educating new hires for companies.

Flow #1 — BDR Angle

Subject: Employee Training at [prospect’s company]

I’m [Rep] with Pensieve Video Productions. We help companies produce employee training videos that combine Hollywood storytelling and modern behavioral science.

Our founders are certified in behavioral design, and have worked with companies like Starbucks, Deloitte, and Warner Bros. to create engaging training content that helps teach, engage and motivate employees.

No sales pitch — just want to get on your radar for any employee education initiatives you have coming down the pike.

What We Learned:

Here are our numbers pre-COVID: 

— Opens: 39 (10.4% open rate)
— Replies: 6 (1.6% reply rate)
— Leads: 3 (0.8% lead rate)

Dismal… but larger external factors were at play here.  Here’s what happened:

  • An early February launch meant a ~6 week ramp up period to ensure healthy inboxes/domains and to gather enough data to scope out what is and isn’t working for prospecting, messaging, etc.  We stopped the campaign less than a month in to rethink everything in light of the COVID-19 outbreak.
  • All of this uncertainty (obviously!) meant that our client had to rethink their business model as well.  So we scrapped everything and re-started to reflect the state of the world and the client’s new model.

In short, we got a brutal lesson in helping our clients adapt to sudden market changes.

What We Did:

Once Pensieve figured out a shift from in-person to remote video production, we were ready to restart.

This meant that we had to rethink our targeting to focus on company sizes under 10,000, and seek out more unique titles like Chief People Officer or Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer to gather momentum for their lead gen. By focusing on senior titles that included narrow keywords (like diversity, training, inclusion, and people) we quickly found our prospecting groove and began to generate higher quality leads.

And we obviously had to change our messaging to reflect the new “shoot the video yourself” model that Pensieve had built.  See below for the changes.

Flow #2 — BDR + Business Model Pivot

Subject: Telling the [prospect’s company] story…

I’m [Rep] with Pensieve Video Productions. We produce employee training films that blend Hollywood storytelling with modern behavioral science.

We’ve been helping companies tell their stories for a while now, but as the world is currently on lockdown, we’ve come up with an entirely new way to serve our clients!

We now approach the ideation, scripting and overall development of your film in a way that enables you to shoot the video yourself, while we guide you remotely via our virtual on-set consultant. Then we edit, mix, and polish the footage into a captivating film you’ll be proud to call your own.  For more information, [click here].

Our founders are certified in behavioral design and have worked with companies like Starbucks, Deloitte, and Warner Bros. to create engaging training content that helps teach, engage, and motivate employees.

No sales pitch — just want to get on your radar for any remote training initiatives you have coming down the pike.

The Numbers:

Flow #1: BDR Angle
Prospects: 422
Emails Delivered: 374
Opens: 39 (10.4% open rate)
Replies: 6 (1.6% reply rate)
Leads: 3 (0.8% lead rate)
Flow #2:  BDR + Business Model Pivot
Prospects: 1143
Emails Delivered: 873
Opens: 261 (29.9% open rate)
Replies: 46 (5.3% reply rate)
Leads: 12 (1.4% lead rate

This was a weird one to be honest.  And one of many strange maneuvers we had to make with clients at the peak of the pandemic outbreak.  We’re happy that the changes — both on our side and the client’s side — lead a repeatable, effective prospecting strategy.

And the client is happy with the sales lead. 🙂

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