“It’s a cycle of evolution for our company, but it’s driven by the improvement of our users.”
1. Tell us a little about Magisto and your role there?
I am the CEO and co-founder of Magisto, where we’re utilizing artificial intelligence to streamline video creation and make it easy for anyone to include video content in their marketing strategy. We believe that video should be less of a resource-intense project and more like creating a social post — so we designed the Magisto video creation product to be simple and intuitive.
2. Can you tell us about your journey into this market?
We realized a while back that video was going to be extremely valuable to marketers, especially those trying to reach today’s digitally native generation, so our goal was to make it more accessible and level the playing field. Video has become essential to any communications program, but even now, including video into your marketing strategy is thought of as a daunting and expensive task — but it doesn’t have to be. We wanted to break that stigma and ease the path to video by utilizing AI to do all the heavy lifting.
We studied the biggest pain points with video and developed algorithms to automate them. Some people lack content, so we provide a massive library of licensed content and soundtracks for users to pull from. A lot of people struggle with initial ideation, they simply don’t know where to begin. So we designed our video template option, which begins by asking users their goal, and from there suggests completely customizable video story formats—including suggested content, copy, and soundtracks—which have proven successful towards their selected purpose in the past.
We’re constantly working to identify and remedy these struggles to make success with video easier to attain. It’s a cycle of evolution for our company, but it’s driven by the improvement of our users. As more videos are created, and users continue to fine tune their strategies, our database continues to grow, constantly analyzing what’s working and what’s not so that it’s able to make better and better suggestions.
3. How do you think technology is changing the Marketing Sector?
Technology enables marketers to do more, in less time and with less budget. The giants are now on the same playing field as the startups. Five years ago, corporations barely had access to the levels of reach and influence that an entrepreneur or small business owner can achieve today. With today’s tech (especially A.I.-powered tech) marketers have superpowers, and with all the data captured, they now have the ability to measure those powers, analyze, and improve.
The problem that I see a lot is that many people aren’t aware of the solutions yet. There is some amazingly useful technology out there, which can save marketers an insane amount of resources. However, everyone is also extremely busy, and that stigma of these solutions involving complicated processes creates hesitancy. But in the end, adopting and utilizing these programs is simple, and the efficiency with which they work frees up vast amounts of resources.
4. What advice would you give to Martech StartUps?
Keep an open mind and listen to the people using your products. It’s very difficult to predict the use case of a specific technology. Your product may end up being utilized for something very different than your original intention. So dig deeply to find out how it’s being used in the day-to-day and double down on that.
The ways in which our users have implemented Magisto’s technology is amazing, and the evolution of our products has been inspired by their feedback.
5. What Digital innovation in Marketing according to you that will mark 2019?
As I see it, artificial intelligence is the technology that will continue to have the largest and most profound impact on marketing throughout 2019. So far, AI has been largely utilized for data, analytics, performance measures, targeting, etc. — all important, but all technical, specified, and complicated uses.
A lot of marketers are still intimidated by AI. They aren’t sure how to implement it without further complicating things. But as AI becomes more user-friendly and advanced in its intuitive abilities, more people will become aware of how useful it can be and the thought, ‘I can’t believe we used to do this by hand,’ will gain a whole new meaning.
6. How has the introduction of AI in Marketing helped in easing the functions of Marketing? How do you prepare for an AI Centric world?
AI is taking on the time consuming, mundane tasks, so that marketers can focus more on the key aspects of their success: their users. With AI-powered tools, marketers are able to delegate and accelerate, allowing more time and resources to focus on an overall plan instead of the minor tasks associated with it.
Also, things that were previously impossible to calculate can now be tested for and optimized. Instead of deploying surveys after a campaign, hoping it worked, marketers have insight into real time analytics, giving them the agility to take risks.
In an AI centric world, speed and scale are going to be important, but a human touch is going to be everything. We’ve built our solution to be fast and efficient, but also to inspire emotion and allow creators to express themselves. Personality and authenticity are what connect us.
7. What are the major developments you are planning, in recent time?
Well… We recently had a rather big announcement about Magisto being acquired by Vimeo, the largest ad-free SaaS solution, creating one place for all business video needs. With a belief in utilizing technology to lower the barriers to quality storytelling, Vimeo’s mission is perfectly aligned with that of Magisto. By joining forces, we’ll be able to offer more to our users and we’re excited to see where it can lead.
8. Can you name some of the most effective video strategies that you have seen?
It may sound odd, but the most effective video strategies were the smallest businesses with the least amount of resources. Car dealers, real estate agents, fitness instructors, etc. all used their biggest asset (themselves) to relate to their audiences. In doing this, they turn their video strategy, something that is traditionally a bottleneck, into evergreen content that can be broadcast to thousands of people. And they do it in 10-15 minutes per day.
They also capture the data they need, and pay attention to it — identifying what works and improving the things that don’t. Piece by piece, these strategies come together over time to be some of the best. Even without the most funding or the perfect plan, these solopreneurs have themselves and their charisma – which seem to be just as important in marketing success.