I tried something new at the weekend, which really pushed me outside of my comfort zone…

For sometime, I’ve had a strong belief we need to give something of value back to our customers, as a way of thanking them for their continued business & loyalty.

And not just a throw away gesture either. Something that has an impact. Something that will help their organisation in some way. Something that could help them over time too.

Then it hit me. Why not create our customers their very own showcase video, which introduces them to our connections, details what they do and explains how we help them.

And as well as sharing the videos on our social media channels, why not create a special ‘customer showcase‘ section on our website. This can be the place where the video’s are available to view for anyone browsing on our website. Giving them the opportunity to learn how our customers (and not just us) can help them too.

Although I did hit a snag. Most customers I initially approached felt uncomfortable with just the thought of talking on a video. So trying to convince people to get involved was proving rather difficult.

But an idea came to me whilst walking the dog one evening. Why not shoot it myself in a selfie style. Yes, that’s right, use a selfie stick & film myself introducing the organisation, their team, detailing what they do and finish off by explaining how we help them. The customer doesn’t have to say anything (unless they want to of course) and can just go about their normal business in the background.

This was the solution. But I’d just created another problem. I’ve never owned a selfie stick let alone used one. Not to be deterred, I borrowed one off a good friend of mine, and put in some practice. Getting to the point where I felt confident enough to give it a good bash.

So I contacted a couple customers. And I think at first they thought they had to do it themselves. And once they understood they still thought I was a bit bonkers. But in the end I managed to convince Neil at Valley Shorai (who has a printing service) to give it a shot.

On Saturday I turned up with smartphone & selfie stick in hand. The parents didn’t know what to make of it. But once I’d explained what I was doing, they were all OK with it (just as long I didn’t get any of them in the shot).

I’d never really had an audience before when doing a video, and I was really nervous. I did a quick dry run mapping out my backwards route (without falling over) and then dived straight in.

Take 1 was a bit of a shambles, with the nerves getting the better of me. In between the erm’s it kinda made sense. Take 2 though was pretty good (have a watch & see what you think) and with practice, I’m sure they will get even better.

I wasn’t after perfection. I was after something real. Something that people will relate too. Besides, I was never going to produce an ultra professional finish anyway. But it was never about that. It was about pushing myself out of my comfort zone, doing something different, something radical and producing something of value for our customers.

Growing an organisation is hard. And for me. Providing showcase videos is a way we can repay our customers loyalty, whilst helping them grow too. And I’m definitely going to be doing some more (if I can persuade any other customers to let me shoot 1 for them).