Navigating the Future of Content Creation, Strategy, and Innovation | Creatives Grab Coffee 57


This conversation explores the impact of AI on content creation and the challenges and opportunities it presents for businesses. The hosts discuss the benefits of AI editing capabilities and the ease of creating podcasts and reels. They also delve into the importance of setting realistic goals and refining processes to maintain a consistent workload. The conversation highlights the limitations of scaling a service business and the potential impact of AI on various industries. The hosts emphasize the role of human expertise in an AI-driven world and the need for creatives to adapt and teach clients how to use AI tools effectively. They also discuss the potential of AI in pre-production and the importance of keeping up with evolving technology. The conversation covers various topics related to working on fun and bold projects, creating a custom GPT model called Hook Hound, thriving in a challenging year, shifting from video production to strategy, dealing with price competition, pitching to the right people, and paying for certainty. The hosts also discuss the importance of sparking curiosity in the sales process.

Creatives Grab Coffee is produced by Lapse Productions, a video production company based out of Toronto, Canada. Reach out to them for your video production needs.

Video Podcast: Navigating the Future of Content Creation, Strategy, and Innovation | Creatives Grab Coffee 57

Audio Podcast: Navigating the Future of Content Creation, Strategy, and Innovation | Creatives Grab Coffee 57


  • AI editing capabilities have made content creation more efficient and streamlined.
  • Setting realistic goals and refining processes are essential for maintaining a consistent workload.
  • The limitations of scaling a service business highlight the importance of human expertise.
  • Creatives should adapt to AI technology and teach clients how to use AI tools effectively.
  • AI has the potential to revolutionize pre-production and improve efficiency in content creation. Embrace the opportunity to work on fun and bold projects that push boundaries.
  • Consider creating a custom GPT model to enhance your creative work.
  • Focus on creating hooks that capture attention and make a strong first impression.
  • Balance recurring business with new opportunities to ensure growth.
  • Pitch to the right people who have the authority and mindset to invest in your services.
  • Highlight the value and certainty you provide to differentiate yourself from competitors.
  • Spark curiosity in the sales process to engage potential clients.
  • Learn from the enthusiasm and genuine greetings of dogs to build better relationships.
  • Adapt your approach to the changing market conditions and economic challenges.
  • Shift from being a video production company to a strategic partner for your clients.
  • Avoid price competition by emphasizing the unique value you bring to the table.
  • Create content that provides long-term value and leverages opportunities.
  • Consider the risk and economic value associated with your work to justify your pricing.
  • End conversations on a positive note and maintain relationships with potential clients.


  • 00:00 Introduction and Impromptu Recording
  • 01:18 AI Editing Capabilities and Content Creation
  • 03:00 Setting Realistic Goals
  • 04:08 The Challenges of Business Growth
  • 05:13 Balancing Growth and Lifestyle
  • 06:05 Refining Processes and Maintaining Workload
  • 07:22 The Limitations of Scaling a Service Business
  • 08:40 The Impact of AI on Service Businesses
  • 09:59 The Efficiency of Virtual Meetings
  • 11:22 The Advancements in AI Technology
  • 12:57 The Potential of AI in Video Production
  • 14:44 The Development of Custom GPT Models
  • 16:23 The Impact of AI on Different Industries
  • 19:24 The Role of Experts in an AI-Driven World
  • 21:11 The Role of Creatives in AI Integration
  • 22:10 The Use of AI in Pitch Decks and Treatments
  • 24:05 The Importance of Human Expertise
  • 25:37 The Potential of AI in Pre-production
  • 28:03 Teaching Clients to Use AI Tools
  • 29:41 The Advantages and Disadvantages of AI in Production
  • 33:05 Keeping Up with Tomorrow’s Technology
  • 33:38 Working on Fun and Bold Projects
  • 34:16 Creating a Custom GPT Model
  • 36:12 Introducing Hook Hound
  • 37:15 The Business of Creating Hooks
  • 38:52 Lessons from Dogs
  • 39:31 Thriving in a Challenging Year
  • 42:20 Shifting from Video Production to Strategy
  • 43:29 Balancing Recurring and New Business
  • 45:03 Dealing with Price Competition
  • 47:24 Pitching to the Right People
  • 53:06 Creating Value and Certainty
  • 56:09 Spark Curiosity in the Sales Process
  • 58:02 Paying for Certainty
  • 01:02:38 Ending the Conversation


Dario Nouri (00:05)
Welcome to Creatives Grab Coffee, the podcast on the business of video production. Creatives Grab Coffee is hosted by Dario Nuri and Kirill Lazerov from Labs Productions. Our goal is to share knowledge and experiences from video production professionals around the world. Whether you’re a freelancer looking to start your own business or a seasoned business owner aiming to scale your company, this is the show for you. Join us as we develop a community of like -minded creatives looking to learn and help each other grow.

Welcome to the business of video production. Welcome to Creatives Grab Coffee. Before we get started with the show, let’s go over today’s sponsors. Do you have a shoot in Toronto? Do you need crew or a strong production partner to help you with your project? Laps Productions is one of the top production companies in Toronto and your go -to video partner. With our strong creative skills and extensive network, we can help you achieve your goal. Laps Productions is able to offer you production services,

white label services or finder fees for project handoffs. Reach out to us on our website at LAPSproductions .com to learn more. My name is Mehran, welcome to Canada Film Equipment.

We are a boutique rental house based in Toronto. We are here to help you guys out with all production sizes. Feel free to contact us to get a quote if you are a production house and you’re looking for lighting, camera packages, or lighting and group plan packages. You can see our contact information in the link below. We are more than happy to help you guys out. Make sure you follow and subscribe to creativesgrapcoffee .com. Thank you.

Hey, what’s up everybody? I’m Matt. Welcome to Audio Process. We are a boutique audio company doing location sound, sound design, post sound, ADR, Foley. We service equipment. We do all your audio needs here in Toronto. We got you covered. Come on down, audioprocess .ca. Don’t forget to like, follow, subscribe, and all of the other internet things to creativesgrabcoffee .com. They’ll be waiting for you. I’ll be waiting for you. And we’re all gonna have a real good time. And now, let’s begin the show.

Dario (02:17)
Hey guys, welcome back to another episode and today we

a guest that’s been on already two times. That’s Chris from Signature Video Group. Chris, how’s it going? Great to have you back.

Chris (02:30)
Good to be here, fellas. Good to see you guys as always. Yeah, how’s everything with you?

Kyrill (02:37)
It’s been going pretty good. It’s going pretty good. I know this is a little bit of a bit of an impromptu episode. We figured, you know what? We had a meeting already scheduled. Why don’t we also record it at the same time, you know?

Dario (02:38)
It’s going good.

Chris (02:50)
What, you know, the create content from everything, right? The impromptu podcast, why not?

Dario (02:57)
Yeah, and thanks to Riverside, they’ve added some AI editing capabilities that, oh my God, it’s so easy to pump out podcasts now. They even create reels for you. They created the transcript, the key takeaways. We tested it out on our. It’s pretty good. It’s not the reels. OK, the reels are not perfect, but everything else is fantastic. In fact, this is episode 57 we’re doing episode 56. We shot it on Thursday and release basically like.

Kyrill (02:57)


I mean, it’s not perfect. It’s not perfect. Dario, let’s be honest. It’s not perfect.

Yeah. Yeah.

we did yesterday.

Dario (03:27)
Did all the stuff on Riverside and like scheduled it for release the next day. Like it was seamless. It was amazing.

Chris (03:34)
as well, it’s speeding up everything. I mean, last time we chatted, AI was nowhere near what it is today. And that’s probably something we should talk a bunch about is how quickly things are changing. I think, you know, the big elephant in every creatives room right now is Sora and what will it be? What will it do? What do we do? And so, yeah, I’m curious to jump into that with you guys, but.

Dario (03:55)
Mm -hmm.

Chris (04:04)
All in due time.

Dario (04:06)
Absolutely. Actually, the episode we just released was on Sora. We spent like a good hour just going over our thoughts on it. But definitely we’ll pick your brain on what you think about it, because it’s definitely going to change the landscape and everything. But we were talking earlier before we started recording about like what we’ve been up to since last year and you as well. Why don’t you tell us a little bit about what you’ve been doing?

Chris (04:30)
Gosh, yeah, so it’s been a wild ride. We’re pretty much at or near max capacity at all times. As I mentioned just a few minutes ago, this next week we’ve got two big projects at the same time, so we’re having to really divide and conquer on this one. So that’s taken a lot of planning and logistics and calling in some of our favorite hired guns, but yeah.

growing pains, right?

Dario (05:02)
We were also talking about like our goals for the year. I was telling you how Kirill and I were talking about our, every January we sit down and we kind of go through what our goals are for the year. As I’m sure you do as well. And while we were going through it this year, we decided that, you know, we’re not really, our goals aren’t really that big to be honest with you. I think that that only really happens maybe when you’re early on into the business, but we’ve been at it for like such a long time now and even.

Kyrill (05:16)

Well, define big though. They’re define big, yeah.

Dario (05:32)
even through the restructuring. Well, big in terms of like, like, okay, why don’t just say like what our goals were for this year? Like for us, all it was was really just belt tightening and redefine, like refining our processes. So not even redefining, just refining them. And basically just being able to maintain like the same amount of work that we had last year.

Kyrill (05:53)
improving them.

Dario (06:02)
Like when we were first chatting about like our financial goals, Kirill was like, yeah, if we got that much last year, then we should also be increasing it by even more to hit this new goal. And I was like, Kirill, state of the economy, let’s…

Kyrill (06:13)
I’m not saying by a Dario, Dario, stop putting words into my mouth, okay? Listen, I think it’s healthy to always try to go for some incremental growth. You shouldn’t be obviously going for unrealistic. You shouldn’t be going for unreal. Can I talk? We can’t go for, we can’t go obviously for major goals. It’s nice to strive for something bigger. I’m sure Chris, you would agree with every year as you go.

Dario (06:24)
It was an incremental kill, it was a big jump. It was a big jump.

Kyrill (06:40)
You see how you’ve done, you wanna try to strive to do better and sometimes the more realistic approach is to go for something in terms of smaller growth in certain areas, maybe not drastic ones, but you have to try to make work towards improving your business year over year because if you don’t, then you’re just gonna be stuck in the same place as always.

Chris (07:02)
Yeah, I would agree with that. And I just like most creative business owners, I get caught in that trap too of now having to grow the business every year because that’s what businesses are supposed to do because of capitalism. But it’s, you know, I don’t think it’s the real reason any of us or anybody you talk to really got into this business. It was never the intent to like.

Dario (07:19)

Chris (07:29)
make a ton of money. That’s a nice byproduct of being able to tell stories for a living. But yeah, it’s, it’s tough, right? Getting, getting caught up in that, that trap of always having to grow at what cost, right? Um, at the cost of, of time of lifestyle, what are you sacrificing to get there? So, yeah, but I do think healthy to have goals.

Dario (07:52)
The way I saw it was, sorry, yeah, yeah. The way I saw it was like, look, the economy’s not doing too well. I think we should just try to hit the same amount we hit last year. Obviously, we’re not turning away business. More business comes in, fantastic, we’ll increase the numbers. But for me, I was like, if we hit last year’s goal, I’ll be happy, to be honest. That’s how I saw it. And I was like, I’m preparing for that. But I’m a little bit more cautious when it comes to business. I’m not too, you know.

Sometimes I do need someone to push me, but.

Chris (08:24)
I’m pretty cautious myself and very conservative. And what’s interesting is as we’ve grown our team, that’s kind of forced my hand to be a bit more aggressive and you know, much larger overhead, meaning we’ve got to keep that pipeline deeper and more robust and bring in bigger projects and better margins. And yeah, it’s tough. It sometimes takes you away from what we’re here to do, which is tell stories.

Dario (08:55)
Mm -hmm, but we were talking about in goals in terms of like how Yeah, we were talking we started this off with goals and yeah, we basically This year we found that our goals aren’t too big. They’re just very a lot smaller. So like do you find that? More realistic. Yeah and

Kyrill (08:56)
Yeah, I can.

realistic, more realistic than, yeah, it’s kind of like basing them based on like, as Dario mentioned, how the market has been going, what advancements have been going along, have been going, what has it been like over the last few years for us as a business? And obviously in terms of our business, we haven’t changed anything major that would warrant a huge change in terms of what we should be doing with our goals.

Dario (09:38)
Mm -hmm. Yeah.

Kyrill (09:39)
If we were to, for example, say have hired someone, that’s gonna change a lot of things about the business. I’m sure you’re still with your team, unless you hired like say double your workforce or changed the amount of people on your team, that would force you to redefine your goals and strategy for the next year. And because Dario and I haven’t done so much of that, let’s figure out a way to improve the business as it is right now in terms of its status.

Dario (10:07)
Mm -hmm.

Chris (10:09)
Yeah, and you know what’s really interesting about what we do, like creative, custom, bespoke work, it’s not truly scalable, right? Like every great person is a one of one and that’s not instantly replicatable until Sora comes out. But no, it’s, yeah, it’s hard, right? Cause you know, I’m sure you guys are just like me, like sort of obsessed, always watching.

Dario (10:25)
Mm -hmm. Yeah.

Kyrill (10:27)
Ha ha ha!

Chris (10:37)
entrepreneurship content and the business of creativity and like all of that beautiful stuff. But, um, yeah, you’re a one of one. There’s only one of you and yeah, infinite scale is just not part of this business model. And sometimes it’s okay to accept that, right?

Dario (10:56)
Yeah, it’s because we’re a lot of people get into thinking you can scale it, but you really can’t scale a service business that much. And we are a service business at the end of the day, unless with AI we can.

Kyrill (11:05)
or that easily.

Chris (11:07)
Yeah, there are things you can do. You could, yeah, you can productize some of your services. Um, there are certain parts of what we all do, something like, you know, a tool like this Riverside now expands your reach dramatically where you can create good content without having to pack up a bunch of cameras and go somewhere physically. You can, you know, produce meaningful content remote and remotely now. And so, yeah, it’s about finding, finding those efficiencies as well. I, I,

I can’t believe that only just a few years ago, we would meet all of our prospects, prospects before they were even clients, like in person, like hop in the car and drive 90 minutes to go sit down for 20 minutes with a stranger. Now, again, like there’s beauty to that as well, right? And, you know, there’s certainly something to be said about, you know, people do business with people and business to some extent is done in person, but.

Dario (11:47)
Oh my God.

Kyrill (11:48)


Chris (12:07)
I mean, Zoom is pretty great. It can take a lot more meetings and one meeting doesn’t kill an entire day now.

Dario (12:15)
Yeah, that’s true.

Kyrill (12:15)
Well, a lot of the time also the leads are also not interested in taking a lot of time out of their day to meet with, imagine if they’re talking to five different production companies, what are they gonna do? Meet with five different production companies at different locations all the time. It kind of like goes back to the other point of like, what’s the purpose of having an office for ourselves as a production company sometimes.

A lot of the times clients would want us to go to their location to meet with them if we have to do it in person anyway, because the clients, they also only have so much time and to take more time out of their day to travel when they already had to bust their asses to travel to their location. You know, it’s definitely what’s happened since the pandemic is everyone has figured out a way to maximize their time and be as efficient as possible when meeting and talking with people, because now talking like this virtually it’s

Chris (12:42)

Kyrill (13:10)
become the standard, it’s become the norm. It’s a great first impression. It’s an improvement from a simple phone call where you don’t get to see the person. At the very least, you can kind of see people like this. It almost kind of takes me back to some of those classic science fiction movies where people would be talking to each other on a TV screen. And even back in the day, it seemed kind of crazy, but yeah, that’s where we’re at now. That’s what we’re doing. And that’s how we conduct the podcast as well.

Chris (13:38)
It’s true, and like even, you know, like calls like this, Zoom, whatever, now there’s all sorts of add -on AI enhancements to like take notes, condense everything, do follow -ups. I kind of, like I’m old school, I still take physical notes, but you know, gone are the days where I can’t finish a brief because I can’t read my own handwriting anymore, you know, stuff like that.

Dario (13:59)

Kyrill (13:59)

Yeah, I mean there’s a…

Dario (14:03)
So what else has been new with you then? Like in terms of your business, like have you noticed, have you gone through anything in 23 that you want to talk about?

Chris (14:06)

I think, let’s see here. What’s changed? We do have a couple of good anchor clients now who are bringing us on for good, consistent, high -level storytelling. So that’s been nice to know that there’s some certainty in the year. But just like most other years, there’s a lot of excitement about what could come in the door.

Right, you never you never really know but yeah, we’ve also been spending time in enhancing our Processes our workflows again, like like you said trimming the fat where possible I spent a couple hours last week going through all of our credit card statements and realizing how many subscriptions I’ve I’ve signed up to and I’m still getting billed for that. I haven’t used in like two or three years I just

Dario (15:04)


Kyrill (15:11)
Oh my god.

Chris (15:13)
notorious for trying out a subscription and again the good ones do a good job at making sure that they still bill you as long as possible so yeah things like that you know saving saving pennies

Kyrill (15:29)
Yeah, you always have to look through kind of like see part of like improving your processes is that finding out what services and subscriptions you use that are actually helpful. Uh, see if there is a better way to do it, if there’s an improved way to do it, and then really cement yourselves with the ones that you use all the time. Like for us is Riverside, uh, art list, Adobe. Those are like three of the key ones that we use on an almost day to day basis.

Dario (15:55)
Chach GPT, what are you talking about? Include the goat, god damn it.

Kyrill (15:57)
Yeah, Chad GPT now. Yeah.

Chris (16:01)
Yeah, it is the, I actually, I spent all week. Um, I was supposed to be working on this presentation that I’m giving down in Vegas next week, but, uh, rather than procrastinate like a normal person, like watching Netflix, I spent the entire week building a custom GPT, like training my, our first, uh, sort of like, you know, custom GPT that essentially is trained to write really engaging hooks for any topic. And.

Dario (16:20)
Hmm. Yeah.

Chris (16:31)
I’m amazed at how much better you can make a custom GPT than the general chat GPT module. Like the outputs can be considerably better if you train it the right way. So that’s been sort of like a brain explosion aha moment that really I’m still going through today. I’m sure right after this podcast, I’m going to jump back in and train that model a little bit more.

Dario (17:00)
Have you tried out Google Gemini? Which is the rebranded Google Bart, because you know Google just rebrands everything after two days.

Chris (17:06)

Kyrill (17:08)

Chris (17:09)
I did check it out a little bit. I tested it out on a few prompts and I got some interesting stuff, but I’m just so familiar and comfortable with ChatGPT and the OpenAI tools. So I’ve really sort of stuck to that. Although, I keep wondering, when is Google gonna come with the fire? Because as we know about these large language models,

The whoever has the data is going to win and Google has all of the data. You know, I look at something like Sora and those demos. And I think what if Google was able to train a text to video, uh, you know, bought that used all of YouTube as a resource. Like that’s like almost an infinite amount of data. Uh, and so what’s that going to look like?

Kyrill (18:02)
Oh yeah.

Well, the crazy thing is that Sora, we were talking about this on the other episode, was that Sora basically trained its AI model through Shutterstock, through their partnership with Shutterstock. So it’s limited to that database of knowledge. And to your point, yeah, if they go with YouTube, there’s a lot more potential because it’s a lot of real content too, not stock -focused based content. So.

It could be a scary and exciting thing as well about what could come from that.

Dario (18:39)
Did you know that for Sora, I might be wrong, but I remember hearing that it was, aside from being trained on Shutterstock, it was actually Google that did the bulk of the work for Sora. And then OpenAI came in. It was in that ColdFusion video. They mentioned it. So it was Google that kind of started it and then OpenAI just kind of took over it or took it.

Chris (19:00)

Kyrill (19:01)

Chris (19:05)
Yeah, I’m hearing all sorts of like different rumors that, uh, you know, that Sora was actually ready last spring and they didn’t, you know, tell the world because the world wasn’t ready to hear it yet because they were still coming to grips with chat GPT and who honestly, who knows what’s going on behind the scenes. I think there’s probably a lot more.

Dario (19:26)
But then they release it during an election year? Mmm, it’s kind of suspect, you know? Hmm…

Chris (19:31)
Hmm. Yeah, I know it’s. If we could peek behind that curtain, I mean, this is, I remember seeing that, that first source sample, somebody sent me, it was the one where the girls on the train taking from sort of like a cell phone perspective. You see that one and she’s on the train and she goes through a tunnel and you see, you then see the reflection showing the person taking the video. And so somebody sent me that video, but without any context. And I was like, okay.

Kyrill (19:33)
I wonder.

Chris (20:01)
great video and then when you find out that was made by an AI, that’s when sort of my heart skipped a beat, you know, and then all of the other demos started filtering in and it’s, it’s just like, it’s hard to, I think every creative who’s paying attention lost sleep over the last couple of weeks over out of maybe fear and anxiety or excitement about what they’re going to be able to do.

with these tools and as the times pass, my fear is transforming into excitement. I think that this is like the biggest thing to ever happen in content creation. Definitely since the cell phone, but maybe ever.

Dario (20:47)
It’s going to be interesting. We mentioned that for us, we see it as a tool that we can use for our productions. That’s how we see it. I think it’s definitely going to cause a loss of income at some point in some areas, for sure. Kirill mentioned events are probably going to be left untouched, obviously because you need to be there in person.

Kyrill (21:04)

Dario (21:12)
For most other things, it is leveling out the playing field. So it might seem like we’re losing money, but maybe it’s just more people getting into the video content space in terms of like, and I mean, from the perspective of a client. So could look like a loss of revenue, but might not be at the same time as well. Cause people that do understand the value of hiring a production company would still, I’m hoping would still do that. But even as production companies, maybe we need to start.

Kyrill (21:26)

Chris (21:26)

Kyrill (21:29)
It could…

Dario (21:40)
Again, looking at how we charge for things and then seeing if clients are just able to do this stuff by themselves and where do we fit into that pipeline? We have to really see how good the technology will get to see if we are replaceable because think about when Photoshop got released, I’m sure a lot of photographers were feeling the same way, right? But now look at it, even though Photoshop is out there, you still, regular people don’t know how to use it.

that well, like you still need to have someone that is trained in the technology to be able to use it.

Kyrill (22:16)
Yeah, it’s like video editing.

Chris (22:16)
Yeah, you’re gonna see, you’re gonna see a few things. Oh, go ahead, yeah.

Kyrill (22:20)
Yeah, I was just saying like, yeah, I mean, like there’s also video editing software out there. There’s a lot of the same tools that clients could download themselves if they really want to and then go through it. But it is a time, it’s a timely process. You know, it’s like, just cause like even on our end, right? Like I may know how to use Adobe Premiere, but I’m not exactly the biggest whiz to create an animation video on After Effects. So we bring in people to help us execute based on that, right?

Sure, yeah, maybe I can do it, but I would have to sit down and take hours and hours and hours to try to figure out something simple to execute that would be easier for them. Ironically, one of the things we talked about was that unfortunately the animation, the video animators are gonna probably be the ones that are hit the hardest by this AI video. And so they’re gonna have to become really well -versed in it so that they can adapt with it. But yeah, at the end of the day,

A client, if they can figure out a way to save time for themselves, they’ll probably take that than anything else. That’s what I’m hoping for.

Chris (23:27)
Yeah, I see kind of a few different things happening. My prediction is like you mentioned, like the in -person elements of what we do telling stories, that’s not gonna go away. In fact, there’s gonna be in some cases like a demand for more human storytelling, I guess you could say, like, you know, stories made by verified humans, told about humans, that sort of thing. I also see like,

Kyrill (23:49)
Mm -hmm.


Chris (23:56)
And we’ve actually seen this in our business a little bit where there’s like a sync opportunities where we will now do the strategy and creative and then we’ll teach our clients and equip them to capture a lot of content themselves on something like, you know, like the Osmo pocket three, where they’re already in the places and opportunities where great things are happening, you know, pull this out, capture it, and then.

throw it on the nausea and we’ll do the post -production. So yeah, we’re doing the strategy in creative. They shoot it under our guidance and then send us the stuff so that we can still package up something that’s cohesive and on brand and has an element of polish to it.

Dario (24:31)

Chris (24:47)
Yeah, I think I agree that animators and illustrators are sort of, you know, gonna have to rethink things. I think anybody who’s in the business of stock footage, I think that’s gonna be a heavy burden on them because, you know, I look at, you know, there’s levels to stock as you guys know, and I always regret when I’m like researching stock for a project and I go to say film supply and I fall in love with everything.

Kyrill (25:00)

Dario (25:03)

Chris (25:15)
But it’s 10 times the cost per clip. Well, pretty soon I’m going to be able to, if I’m good enough at describing what I’m looking to see, it’s going to be able to create that for me and be indistinguishable from stock or at least as good. Right. So yeah.

Kyrill (25:34)

Dario (25:34)
You know, we keep talking about the potential, the potentials of this technology, but if it gets to be really good, we, our livelihoods would probably be at stake because right now, like you still need to prompt it. I mentioned the Photoshop example, but after I mentioned it, I was thinking about it. It’s like, okay, what if this AI tech gets to the point where it’s actually really, really good and it can just understand what you want to do. Like it can analyze your brand assets and understand this is the tone.

This is the previous content you’ve done. That’s when it gets to be problematic. But to be honest with you, if it gets to be at that point, think about how many other jobs would be in trouble, right? Lawyers, for example, those guys would be gone. Think about how many jobs within a company would be redundant. Like probably 90 % of them wouldn’t be that necessary, right? So it’s gonna be a wild and interesting time in our lifetimes.

Kyrill (26:21)
I stuff.

Chris (26:26)
Yeah, it feels like we’re in an episode of Black Mirror a little bit.

Kyrill (26:26)

Dario (26:29)

Kyrill (26:30)
A little bit, definitely. I mean, to your point, Chris, I do still think that there’s gonna be a need for some human element to be present at some part of the process because if it’s not, maybe even more so than we realize because yeah, you can be very good with describing certain things that you need for this content, but it may not always spit out exactly what you need and then if it gets to the point where people are spending more and more time on it, they’re gonna need specific AI.

prompt engineers as we were talking about, right? That’s essentially what we might end up becoming in our industry. And like, yeah.

Dario (27:07)
That’s assuming, that’s assuming there’s no like tech, like no future improvements where you don’t need to be like a prompt engineer. That’s the thing, cause they’re trying to move away from that too, right? So it’s like, Oh my God, it’s gonna be interesting.

Kyrill (27:14)
Of course, but…

Chris (27:17)
Yeah, well, I mean, it’s.

Kyrill (27:19)
You know, I did an event yesterday where I did an event yesterday where they were kind of like going over AI for, it was like a workshop of AI for coding. And they were talking about how you need to be very specific about the way you’re prompting things for it to give you that information the way you need. And I think like any other tool, it’s gonna be helping people become a lot more efficient in cutting out the fat or trimming out the fat in terms of the process. But I still think it’s almost gonna be like a final,

It’s like a, it’s a good way to get your first draft. I feel like the whole first draft process is gonna be eliminated. And then after that, it’s a, yeah. I know.

Dario (27:53)
But it’s right now, it’s right now, Kirill. Like look how far it’s going and like month by month basis. So just imagine like one, two years. Like think about this in the future, people that are doing, with how common work from home is, imagine you might be working with another employee that might just be an AI chat bot and you might not know it. That’s definitely a possibility at some point. Cause you know, these corporations, if they can cut out costs, they’ll do it.

Kyrill (28:03)
I know.

Chris (28:17)

Kyrill (28:21)
There’s no real people.

Chris (28:21)
It’s true. There there’s whole big companies have have whole floors of strategists looking to, you know, find efficiencies. But, you know, in thinking about, you know, the human part of this, I do think that, you know, like, for example, I like, I look at this GPT we’ve been building and, and it astonishes me how good like the hook, the hooks it writes already just a few days in and.

But the whole process of understanding what we’re making and why we’re making it and for who and all of that stuff, you know, like we’ve talked many times, like, you know, we’re not in the business. We make videos are what we make, but really we’re delivering business results or solving business problems. And still there’s a huge part of understanding what is that problem and articulating it, coming up with a strategy of.

how we’re gonna tell stories to engage people to solve that problem. And then we’re still gonna be the ones like prompting and approving and compiling and revising. And yeah, also I think it’s notable that we all, the creators seem to be on the cutting edge of AI because I think just by nature, learning new tools and that’s gonna create an opportunity to…

You know, as we learn these tools, just in, in our everyday business, there’s going to be opportunity for us to teach our clients on how to do that. You know, maybe things will shift to that situation where instead of giving a man a fish, we’ll teach a man to fish so that he can eat for a lifetime, uh, sort of metaphor. So our clients are going to eventually start using those tools. We should be the ones teaching them on how to do that. I think that’s.

part of our strategy that we talk about a lot here is if it’s coming for our job, let’s make sure that we’re.

Kyrill (30:26)
It’s part of the job. Basically, yeah, make sure it’s part of the job. That’s a good way to do it where you kind of bring it to the client as like an aid to the whole process. I think they will, they will be a lot more comfortable integrating it and also understanding how it can be helpful because I, at the end of the day, humans always want to go and seek advice from real people and experts, right? When you go to a mechanic, you know,

Chris (30:27)
Yeah, exactly.


Kyrill (30:54)
You wanna make sure that the mechanic who’s working on your car knows what he’s doing. If you’re going to a barber, you wanna make sure your barber knows how to cut hair properly. There’s gonna always be that need to trust the expertise from someone. I mean, technology.

Dario (31:12)
That’s a bold assumption, Kirill, because I always go on Google right after I hear an expert talk just to fact check it. Especially mechanic, it’s like, oh, you need to get this fixed. It’s like, OK, two seconds. Let me just Google that. Let me see if I’m being scammed or not.

Kyrill (31:18)
Well, okay, I mean, I guess it depends on what it is, but…

Yeah, but you’re again, you’re getting more.

Chris (31:29)
Yeah, your rotator splint is acting up right now, you know.

Dario (31:34)
You might as well have told me like a Newtonian formula. I don’t know what that means. I’m gonna go Google that quickly.

Chris (31:38)

Kyrill (31:39)
At the end of the day though, you’re still going to other experts to see what was right and what wasn’t when you’re doing that, right? You’re seeing like what other people have. See, that’s the thing. That’s not AI right there. Those are real experts according to Dario. He lives his life on the Reddit comments. So you just proved my point.

Dario (31:44)
the comment section of Reddit.


Chris (31:57)
Yeah. But you know, at the end of the day though, if we can still solve problems, right? Yeah. It is true. I mean, I, you know, you think about like the, the first time you went on chat GPT and you know, the outputs it would give versus what it can do now. And then also we’ve all learned that we can use chat GPT to literally help us write the prompts or reverse engineer other things. And so, yeah, it’s.

Dario (31:59)
But you don’t know, in the future it might be chatbots, who knows.

Do you like it more now? Because I feel like it’s been dumbed down so much. Like I have a tough time with it now, to be honest with you.

Chris (32:33)
Well, I use it just sometimes to just like for inspiration. We never use it for finished work. So give me some like ideas. And then from that we’ll pull from a nugget and add to it. But what we’ve been really excited and using it effectively with is when we’re building like pitch decks or treatments, now I can, instead of going and trying to find like an image that represents this, I can create something from scratch.

Kyrill (32:42)
Mm -hmm.

Chris (33:01)
We pitched something a few weeks ago. Yeah, I used Dolly mid journey and a number of other tools, but you know, we just we were actually able to pitch a really wild cinematic like sci -fi concept to a client that six months ago, we never would have had the confidence to do and so yeah, we created like this massive world with like rich visuals so that

Dario (33:02)
I used Dolly, right?

Chris (33:31)
I didn’t, I wouldn’t have to tell someone about what we’re looking to make. I could show them and, uh, you know, there wasn’t any additional massive budget for storyboarding or concept art because you would normally have to like hire someone and spend a very long time getting to what those look like. Now in a few hours, I can create stuff that is amazing and tells, shows the client exactly what I have in my mind. And, uh, that’s been a lot of fun.

Kyrill (34:01)
Yeah, that was, that was one thing we highlighted how it can really improve the pre -production process specifically in storyboarding and creating mood boards and visual references, because those are things that do take quite a while. And there are tools out there like frame set, which can help you find specific, uh, reference images, but those are coming from real movies and past projects. So.

Dario (34:05)

Movies, yeah.

Kyrill (34:25)
Maybe you need to get something more specific that gets uploaded. I mean, I wonder though, if you’re pitching something that’s sci -fi and it spits out something super elaborate, will you be able to recreate that in post though?

Dario (34:33)
Yeah, that’s what I was thinking, yeah.

Chris (34:36)
So yeah, this one we’re kind of double -diffing on the tech. So we actually pitched this project to shoot in a volume studio as like a big like Dune -inspired world.

Dario (34:48)
What’s a volume studio?

Chris (34:50)
Like an LED volume studio, so a studio where something like, where they shot like the Mandalorian, long story short, you know, traditional visual effects, you know, shot on green screen. All of the post -work is done after the fact. Now with a volume studio, you can do all of that visual effect work in advance. And then everybody on the day on set can actually see what the background looks like. And you can swap backgrounds.

Dario (34:54)
Oh, okay.

Kyrill (34:54)
Ah, okay.

Dario (34:57)

Mm -hmm.

Chris (35:21)
instantly and it creates a lot of advantages but still carries some disadvantages and also an immense cost. But it’s, you know, you use Unreal Engine 5 to generate these stereoscopic backgrounds now. And so that’s another tool that we’re trying to learn. And so, yeah, it feels like half of our job is just keeping up with

what tomorrow looks like.

Kyrill (35:54)
Yeah. You met.

Dario (35:54)
And you’re working on some fun stuff, eh? Like in comparison to what we’ve been doing. It’s working on like space sets and…

Chris (35:59)
We’re, we’re trying. I mean, that’s yeah. You know what? This is a client we worked with last year and, uh, we, we did some bold stuff with them and they really liked it. And, uh, it’s amazing to see them come back and ask for even bigger, bolder ideas. My fingers and toes are crossed that this one goes through because we’ve all become so in love with the concept and.

Kyrill (35:59)

Chris (36:27)
learning how to pull it off that we hope we get the chance.

Kyrill (36:32)
Yeah, get the nice reward for all that experimental research and testing, right?

Chris (36:39)
for sure and like, you know, and like learn new things. Um, like building this custom GPT, I got that, that feeling that I haven’t had in so long where like new skill unlocked, um, that’s going to, you know, bring a major benefit down the road. It’s, uh, it’s cool.

Dario (37:00)
You can buy custom ones too. There’s people that sell them. You mentioned feeding it information. I was trying it out a while ago. I don’t know if they changed some stuff. What do you mean by feeding it and customize it? What did you add to it?

Chris (37:05)
Yeah, yeah.

Yeah, so in this case, I’m basically training this bot to do one thing only, which is write world -class, compelling hooks. Right now it’s for one medium video, but the ultimate goal is to create a tool that people can use to create more impactful first impressions anytime, anywhere in this.

Attention economy. How do you capture someone’s attention and hold it so that you can accomplish your goal? And there’s, you know, short attention spans, infinite competition. Um, but anyways, back to training the model. Yeah. So, you know, training this specific model and specific instructions with, you know, things like all of the viral hooks that are currently trending and all of the great creators like.

you know, what is Mr. Beast doing and Alex Hermosy and Gary Vee and Casey Neistat, but then also what’s happening in ASMR and what kind of things have traction there and training it on all of the great copywriters who have ever lived, people that just have a way with words.

Dario (38:28)
Wait, on ASMR? Yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah.

Kyrill (38:29)
Is it on chat GPT? Is it on chat GPT? You’re doing this bot? Yeah, okay.

Chris (38:33)
Yeah, exactly. Yeah. You can actually, it’s, it’s actually currently available, um, in the, uh, GPT store. Uh, it’s called hook hound and, uh, yeah, you can check it out. If you have a premium subscription, you can use it for free right now. Um, yeah, just. Yeah. Yeah. It’s called hook hook hound. Yeah. Like that. The idea came from, uh,

Kyrill (38:44)

Dario (38:52)
This is your custom one. Okay, I’ll check it out.

Kyrill (38:55)
Hook Hound, I like the name of it.

Chris (39:01)
It’s just inspired by, you know, our late dog, Frankie, and just the way a dog can hook you immediately, they’re just so good at immediately getting your positive, undivided attention. They’re the very best in the world at that, and that sort of, you know, inspired me to try to create a bot or a tool that generates really good first impressions.

Kyrill (39:31)
It’s a great business almost on its own. Just creating hooks. You have a backstory and everything behind it for the name.

Dario (39:37)

Chris (39:38)
Yeah, I, yeah, instead of working on a presentation, I built an entire brand as a procrastination tool. So, but it’s fun, right? I mean, it’s just silly.

Dario (39:45)
Wait, wait, wait, but is it real? Is the story real or did ChadGPT make it up for him? Did he really have a dog named Frankie?

Kyrill (39:46)
There you go.

Oh, don’t hit him where it hurts don’t hit him where it hurts now, man

Chris (39:54)
I did. Yeah. We, oh, I know. Yeah. He was, we lost him in January, but he lived a good life. He was 14 and, uh, uh, yeah, he’s a, he’s a, he’s the bestest boy. Yeah. Yeah. He, he was just under a hundred. I think it was like 99 and change. Uh, but yeah, we can learn a lot from dogs. I remember, uh, one of my favorite, like business improvement books I’ve ever read. Uh,

Kyrill (40:04)
Oh, he, yeah.

Dario (40:04)
Wow, that’s old.

It’s like a hundred.


Kyrill (40:14)
Oh wow.

Chris (40:22)
I recommend this to anyone. It’s how to win friends and influence people. One of those classic books and there’s. Yeah, but there’s a chapter in there that talks about basically be a dog. Greet people with genuine enthusiasm, like the way a dog does, uh, because look like, you most dogs haven’t had to work a day in their life. They just get loved and attention. And so, you know, take cues from that and be a dog and.

Dario (40:28)
Yeah, tell Dale Carnegie or something right or Andrew

Chris (40:53)
greet people with genuine enthusiasm and curiosity and next thing you know, they like you and then you like them and you like each other and now we’re friends and now we’re doing business together forever and yeah, a lot we can learn from dogs. So, Hook Hound, check it out on the GPT store. Pretty much, yeah. That’s the secret sauce there.

Kyrill (41:08)

Dario (41:08)
So just approach people and pant heavily.

Ha ha.

Kyrill (41:19)
Kind of like switching gears a little bit. You mentioned it’s been really hectic for you, like practically without any free time over the last year where we’ve heard from a lot of different people in our industry that 2023 was a pretty challenging year in terms of work, like of mixed work and kind of like how business has been going. But it sounds like it’s really been thriving for you. Has it been a lot of like…

Dario (41:36)
Next. Yeah.

Kyrill (41:47)
recurring business from past clients or has it been a lot of new business that’s been coming through the front door for you?

Chris (41:53)
Yeah, it’s so it’s a lot of recurring business. Um, but some of that recurring business is becoming like more static. So we’re doing more work for some of the same clients. Um, you know, our, our pipeline is, is built out over, you know, six to eight months. We did notice at the end of, uh, last year in 2023, Q4 was really slow when it came to like new leads, new

Kyrill (42:23)
Mm -hmm.

Chris (42:23)
Opportunity stuff like that. It was like astonishingly quite actually one of the one of the quietest You know q4s that I can really remember luck lucky enough. We you know had a decent pipeline that that carries through to to this year, but Yeah, it I’m also super sorry. I’ve got two kids two young girls, you know three three in one so that’s

That’s just keeping me crazy busy, but that’s also motivating me too. And like, I’ve got, I can’t, I can’t take a, I can’t take a break anymore. I’ve gotta keep pushing for them.

Dario (43:04)
I was reading an article about how much money is leaving Canada right now, like investment money. So it’s kind of worrying about the future of this economy.

Chris (43:11)
Hmm. Yeah.

Yeah, I mean, we’re seeing like, you know, crazy inflation everywhere. A lot of big brands are starting to, you know, tighten their wallets. They’re putting on hiring freezes, in some cases, laying off part of their staff, rethinking their budgets. Um, but you know, with that.

presents an opportunity where, so for example, you know, maybe looking at big tech where maybe they’ve laid off a fleet of salespeople while creating content, telling stories, that’s now creating sales assets that they can use at scale, make it once, use it forever. And you can track its success and you can tweak it to improve and.

You know, it doesn’t take holidays, vacations, doesn’t call in sick. It just goes to work every single day for your business, creating value. And so, uh, that’s really what we’re, we’re trying to push. Like we’re really trying to move away from the story that we make videos and that we’re the video people. Video is just how we solve the problem. Uh, and you know, the right video can add tremendous value to a business.

And so that’s what we’re looking at doing.

Dario (44:36)
Yeah, you’re going more so for the strategy approach. I found that I was testing that out previously, but I found that lately is just so much easier to pitch just the video side of it, right? And I’ve actually noticed that we’re closing a bit more just by doing that. Granted, our market positioning is it’s because of the leads, but it’s because of leads, but granted our marketing positioning.

Kyrill (44:55)
It could be because of the leads. It could be because of the leads coming through for us. It’s that.

Dario (45:04)
market positioning is slightly different from yours because yours is like more boutique. So expensive. You’re probably like low to mid volume boutique high quality, right? Ours is, you know, we’re mid -level pricing, high quality, but low volume, low volume because it’s Kirill and I can just run. It’s not, it’s not like we got that much, right? So we’re kind of like leaving. Yeah. It’s a small team.

Kyrill (45:29)
It’s a small team.

Chris (45:31)
For sure.

Dario (45:32)
So for us, I found that it’s easier to just, okay, like, and also for me in terms of this, our sales funnel, I just, okay, they come in, quickly go through our pitch by the end of the meeting, they got a price. Great. Let’s go.

Kyrill (45:45)
A lot of the leads that are coming through know what they’re looking for. That’s probably also what is the case. If it was, do you find that a lot of the leads that come to you are in that same position where they’re very much in the know of what they need are very specific or is it like, Hey, we’re, this is what’s coming up. We want your thoughts on what we can do for this because we don’t get too much of that right now.

Chris (45:45)
for sure.

Dario (46:08)
Unless Chris, are you doing these strategy sessions? Are you doing it with your recurring clients? Is that, cause I can see that being easier to pitch versus with someone that’s fresh.

Chris (46:08)

Totally. Yeah. So, uh, it depends to answer the first question. It depends on, you know, where the lead came from and you know, what they’re looking to do. If, you know, most of the time, if a lead comes in through, you know, organic search and SEO, it’s probably for, for us, some sort of, you know, video production related term. And so, which is like a high intent search terms. So usually when they’re found, they find us that way.

They already know that they want video. They most likely know what kind when they need it done You know, it’s it’s much more transactional and we actually have We found those to become the most challenging leads now even last year we especially noticed that There’s way way way more competition on those bids. Nobody ever wants to

Kyrill (47:14)

Chris (47:18)
have an info call, they just want a price. And it’s becoming almost like, yeah.

Dario (47:22)
Yeah, yeah, that’s why I had to change That’s why I had to change my strategy because they just wanted a price and I understood that I’m like, okay Let’s just make it easier for both parties, right?

Kyrill (47:22)



Chris (47:33)
And what I’m hearing too is from like, sometimes these prospects will, we’ll tell us, say we say we get a note from them, they went a different direction, but we always follow up and ask, you know, who did you go with? What was the decision? You know, what, you know, sort of what prompted this? And sometimes they’ll come up and they’ll come out and tell you and say, Oh, you know, you guys, we loved you. We would love to work with you, but you were here and someone came in here and you know, we’re not, we’re not.

used to hearing the numbers be so low of what somebody who got the same brief as us was willing to do that project at making almost like the error of dropping your price and racing to the bottom because it turns this whole thing into a commodity. So there’s a

Dario (48:25)
Without saying a name, was it a big company that did that? Or have you noticed big companies doing that? Without mentioning names, obviously.

Chris (48:31)
There’s been a few of those and those are incredibly frustrating.

Dario (48:38)
That means they’re not doing well. That means they’re in a… Yeah. No, but if it’s a… But Kyril, if it’s a big company doing that, that means they got some bad debt. That’s usually the case.

Kyrill (48:40)
There’s always someone who’s gonna do it cheaper in that sense.


Chris (48:50)
It could be, or it could be the nature of, of the project where, you know, like the way we found best to win in things like strategy and solving real problems. The only way you get those gigs is if you’re talking to the right people. Uh, and what I mean by that is someone from that organization who is actively interested in growth or results or creating value.

versus maybe somebody further down that chain that’s more transactional. They were hired to get three quotes. They don’t care that you’re the best storyteller or strategist in the world. They’re like, look, dude, I need this thing shot and somebody’s willing to do it for one 10th of what you quoted. So we’re gonna go with that, right?

Kyrill (49:25)

I got lunch in like 10 minutes. Yes.

Dario (49:40)
It’s a balancing act. It’s a balancing act because you could do Chris’s approach and like push to get to the director or whatever, the director of marketing or wherever you want to get to. But they might just say, you know what, this is too much work. Scratch them off the list.

Chris (49:58)
That’s what they always say. Yeah. But on the flip side when… Yeah, exactly. But…

Kyrill (50:01)
Yeah, if there’s more steps.

Yeah, I was just saying, if there’s more steps in the beginning, then it can get, there’s more points of where you can lose the lead if you’re trying to kind of get in front of the right people all the time. And like as Dario said, and you said, it’s a balancing act. You have to really figure out if this is one of those situations where you should be pushing for the higher ups to get in touch with, or if this is, it is what it is type of project, right?

Chris (50:29)
Exactly. Yeah. And it’s about figuring out what that opportunity is as early as possible.

That’s really important.

Kyrill (50:42)
Yeah, and projects like, for example, events, event highlights and things like that, it’s very, those are the types of projects where it could be very straightforward, where you know what usually this entails and you know whatever this person is telling you, the same thing’s gonna be mentioned by their directors or their VPs. So you can confidently pitch based on that and based on past experience. It’s when it’s much more tailored content that’s very specific.

probably like these types of projects, Chris, that you deal a lot of, that is the situation where you need to get in touch with the right people, where if they wanna create a campaign to promote a lot of different things, how do you know if that will only work with one deliverable? Because it goes back to that kind of classic approach where sometimes people try to jam pack 50 different messages into one video and that never works. Sometimes it’s better to let them know it’s like, hey,

your budget will be better put to use if you plan for two or three deliverables, each with a specific message, and this is how it can be done, that is, those are the situations where you need to be talking to the right people. It’s not like, hey, how much can you make a video for that’s 30 seconds? It’s like, that’s no information.

Dario (52:00)
But you could do that later. You could do that later in the sales process, Kirill, after you close them, because then you will be put in front of the higher -ups and everyone else. You always have those introductory meetings, those onboarding meetings. That’s when you can start to like lay the seeds and just water them slowly throughout the process.

Kyrill (52:10)
Yeah, but…

Chris (52:18)
Yeah. And you can create opportunities from thinner. So like, let’s take the, like the event coverage thing as an example. Um, you know, a lot of the times they, they, they know what they want. They want the standard. We want a small team to come and capture everything and capture this speaker and this and this, and then make a highlight video. Um, you know, which is a piece of cake, but we find, for example, um, at events or conferences.

Kyrill (52:20)
You gotta

Chris (52:48)
that had been planned for a very, very long time. Well, this is an opportunity where this host or this brand is gonna have all of their VIPs in one place at one time, which in today’s world never happens anymore. So there’s a huge opportunity for us to have, you know, a small but skilled component of that production be there to, you know, capture case studies or testimonials or what have you, where.

Dario (53:17)
That’s really good.

Chris (53:17)
Now it’s not just an event video. You’re, you’re using that event to give them a year’s worth of content. Um, we, we had one a few months ago where they were hosting their sort of, you know, their annual, uh, C -suite, uh, get together in Toronto. And, you know, the initial conversation was, Hey, we’re all going to be together. Can you come and get a few quick shots? And like, I don’t have any budget. Uh, but it quickly turned to.

Kyrill (53:24)

Chris (53:47)
the entire C -suite is going to be in one place at one time. Let’s grab 15 minutes with each one of them, ask them a series of questions with a general lens of recruitment, retention, culture, what it’s like to work here. Tell us about your favorite thing, getting to know these people. And from that, you know, we were able to make like 15 really valuable videos that they use for recruitment, for biz dev. And so we turned.

Kyrill (54:17)

Chris (54:18)
turn that into a ton of content for them that they’re still leveraging today. So you can turn those transactional things into deeper value. But again, if you’re talking to a coordinator who just needs a quote, you’re not going to go very far with that.

Kyrill (54:37)
Yeah, because they don’t have the authority and the push to even do that or even to have the time to think about it. And the other unfortunate thing is if you’re, even if you pitch these ideas to these people, they’re only gonna remember a portion of what you pitched and they’re not gonna have that, the essence of the.

Dario (54:38)
Mm. Yep.

Well that’s why you send the proposal. You gotta send that proposal, Kirill.

Kyrill (54:59)
Well, no, that’s part of it, right? But the idea is also you’re pitching to the wrong person. So it’s not going to have the level of in -depth ideas and enthusiasm even sometimes as if you do pitch it to someone who has the authority to make those decisions. It’s always better to get in front of the right people, but you got to know when to be pitching to the right people.

Chris (55:22)
Absolutely. Yeah. And the last thing they’re going to want to do is create friction for themselves or risk and their role where they’re, you know, they were tasked with say getting five quotes for this event coverage. And next thing you know, they’re trying to get a meeting with the CMO to pitch something way more expensive. That’s just, that’s unlikely to happen. But if you are happy to deal with a senior level decision maker who’s growth minded and thinking about.

Kyrill (55:44)
Mm -hmm.

Chris (55:53)
how they can grow that business. A CMO is gonna be focused on how do we get better KPIs, make our marketing dollar stretch further, gain market share, whatever they are focused on. If you can help them do that, they are receptive to those conversations.

Kyrill (56:14)
Yeah, and it also varies sometimes.

Dario (56:15)
Got me thinking again. I might have been leaving some ideas out.

Kyrill (56:21)
We always gotta try to keep striving for more if possible. That’s essentially what Chris is saying. And yeah, in the other cases, also the, like, it depends on also if you’re being brought on through like a third party, right? So a lot of the time is also if you’re working through a marketing company, an ad company, or an events company, which is also a lot of the time the case because brands need events, event managing companies to handle.

Chris (56:28)

Kyrill (56:48)
all aspects of it and video and photo usually is just one portion of that. So yeah, all varies.

Chris (56:58)
For sure. You know, but you know, even just again, like back of the napkin creative session here. So say, um, you’re being brought on by or requested to come on by an event company, the company that put on this really big impressive event that their clients paying for. And they just needed, you know, it was probably in their mandate from the client. Oh, we need video coverage of XYZ. But if you are able to speak to the decision makers of the people putting on that event.

You have some goodwill there saying, look at this amazing thing that you’ve spent months and oodles of money creating. You should have somebody there to help tell that story and let the client fund that essentially. So, you know, it depends on who you’re talking to, but playing to, again, like the amount of work that goes into like a big event is obscene. And so play to that when you’re talking to those people.

Dario (57:46)
Mm -hmm.

Kyrill (57:52)

This is why I love having these conversations with you, Chris, because nothing is ever black and white for you. And you find these opportunities in places where a lot of other production companies and people don’t necessarily think to even attempt to pitch for it. It’s like the way you’re phrasing it is like, look at all the work that you’ve done to put this together. Don’t you want to look in? You spark curiosity, which is, which…

is a good, which is something you kind of, I think is necessary, especially in interaction with leads and in the sales process, like make them curious about what could be done. Don’t just be like, you need this, you need this. Like, have you thought about this? Does that even cross your mind?

Chris (58:40)
Yeah, like, yeah, if you’re dealing with those senior decision makers, having the value conversation is a good one to have. Like again, back to the example of like an event where everybody’s in one place at one time, just the sheer cost of what it took to get everybody in one place at one time, whether people paid for their own traveler. Think about if you were flying in.

Kyrill (59:03)

Chris (59:08)
15 executives to any one location. What would, like hotels and flights and meals and logistics, what that would cost massively over exceed, for sure. And so you kind of can tell that story saying, well, this is great news. We don’t have to, we don’t have to fund that part at all. We just need to show up to this one place with a few cameras and talk to everybody important in one day.

Kyrill (59:15)
That’s pricey.

Chris (59:37)
Uh, so it’s immediate, it’s high value and there’s a long -term benefit there where, I mean, truly in one or two days, you can shoot enough stuff with just interviews to give them content for months or longer.

Dario (59:52)
months yeah yeah definitely adding that yeah yeah no i always i always pitch extra stuff but i like how um uh chris well chris thought outside the box right like they’re coming to him for that and he like the the whole life all the c -suite leaders are gonna be there might as well do extra stuff with that i like that idea that’s a clever one i didn’t think about that before

Kyrill (59:56)
So you hear that Dario? Make them curious. Make them curious.

It’s the approach.

It’s a no -brainer.

Chris (1:00:18)
Yeah. And like, you know, and then if you want to, you know, even bolt another layer on top of that, it’s not. So now if it’s going to be all of the C -suite is going to be in one place at one time, great opportunity, but now there’s like a risk element. So now they have to make sure that they’re going to hire someone that’s not going to embarrass them in front of the C -suite, or that’s not going to create.

Dario (1:00:44)
Mm -hmm.

Kyrill (1:00:45)

Chris (1:00:47)
I’ve got a bad experience for, you know, the CEO of the company or, or, you know, what have you. So that’s where. Now the risk has gone up and there needs to be a cost for that because, you know, there’s a lot of people that can go and shoot an event video, but that list gets a lot smaller when you have to sit down with, you know, the CEO of a fortune 100 company, for example.

Dario (1:01:14)
Mm -hmm.

Kyrill (1:01:15)
at the, what’s it called? The, the filtering process becomes more strict from the client, from the client side at that point, because then they have to start to really think about like, who can we afford to put in front of these people? You know, like originally, if it was just like you said, a simple, straightforward event video, it’s like, okay, we could just hire this company, you know, this decent price and whatever. It’s like, wait, they have to go in front of the client in front of our CEO. Okay. Let’s make sure that.

Everyone that’s coming in from that company is they have a head on their shoulders so that they don’t embarrass us Like there’s a

Chris (1:01:49)
Totally, and it’s, yeah, it’s not to say that, you know, a smaller company can’t do that thing or won’t do an amazing job, but when you get really high up that chain, now they’re willing to pay for certainty, hiring a firm that they’re certain will execute, that has a plan B and a plan C and the experience and the cash and the insurance, and they’ve done this a thousand times.

But again, when we all started out, we pushed for those opportunities when we didn’t have the experience. And so that just leads you to have more confidence and win more stuff.

Dario (1:02:30)
You’re paying for certainty. I like that. That’s a good way to pitch for stuff too, eh? Hey, you’re paying for certainty.

Chris (1:02:35)

Kyrill (1:02:35)
that’s I mean we do that in our business all the time when you think about it there’s that classic phrase the buy once cry once approach you know when it comes to some equipment that you might need you know like buy an expensive tripod you know with certainty it will last you more than 10 years rather than spending a little less and then you know yeah like we still have even like we still have tools that that we bought like back in 2014 that we’re still using to this day and it’s just

Dario (1:02:53)
last longer than the camera.


Chris (1:02:57)

Same. Yeah.

Kyrill (1:03:04)
It’s that same approach. That’s their version of paying for the certainty, right?

Chris (1:03:11)
Yeah, paying for certain T lowering their risk. Um, all of that good stuff, you know, I’m always fascinated when I hear stories of like how a branding agency was able to charge likes, let’s say a million dollars for a logo refresh that looks pretty much the exact same. And it’s not that it costs anywhere near that to, to do the work. And yes, there was a lot of thought put into it as we all know. Um, but it’s the risk.

of what if this is bad? Um, and also the economic value that that logo for that mega brand provides. And so you’re the, if you’re the people hired to shape that vision, um, you should be rewarded. You know, they, they could just go on and ask an AI to make that logo and it would probably do a good job eventually, but there’s, there’s still something to be said about.

being able to trust legends at what they do.

Dario (1:04:14)
Also the AI logo wouldn’t have copyright. There’s no copyright protections on the AI logo so there’s that too.

Kyrill (1:04:15)
but will legends be around forever?

Chris (1:04:19)

That’s right. Yeah, exactly. And for all of your copywriting needs now, use Hook Hound.

Kyrill (1:04:23)
That’s another thing.

Dario (1:04:26)


Kyrill (1:04:30)
Hook Hound, yeah, this episode of Creatives Grab Coffee has been sponsored by Hook Hound. Get your prompts, get your hooks.

Chris (1:04:32)

Dario (1:04:36)
Use code Chris Use code Chris for 10 % off All right, well I think that that was a good point to end this conversation off of so yeah Chris Thank you again for coming on always a pleasure to have you and yeah, catch you on the next one

Chris (1:04:39)
Get your prompts now. Yeah.

Exactly. Yeah. It’s free. Yeah.

Kyrill (1:04:45)
of free, so it’s free.

to end it off on.

Chris (1:04:56)
For sure.

Yeah, nice to see you guys. Always nice to chat and we’ll grab, let’s go grab a cold one as soon as humanly possible.

Kyrill (1:05:07)
You mean we can’t grab a cold one with an AI or something now?

Dario (1:05:08)


Chris (1:05:14)
Now listen, maybe one day, but not this day.

Dario (1:05:18)

Kyrill (1:05:19)
One day, but not today. All right.

Chris (1:05:20)
Awesome. Exactly.

Dario (1:05:22)

Dario Nouri (1:05:33)
Thanks for listening to this episode of Creatives Grab Coffee. Please make sure to follow and engage with us on Instagram, TikTok, LinkedIn, YouTube, and your favorite podcast app. Creatives Grab Coffee is created by Laps Productions, a video production company based in Toronto, Canada. Creatives Grab Coffee is also sponsored by. My name is Mehran, welcome to Canada Film Equipment.

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