Richard Feynman is one of the smartest people to ever live. You should look him up if you don’t know who he is. In terms of problem-solving, there may be no equal in human history to Feynman. Feynman did a couple of amazing things that affect our everyday lives: He worked on the Manhattan Project, which allowed us to – among other things – harness the power of atomic energy. He also came up with these diagrams that explain how the smallest particles in our universe interact with one another. Quantum mechanics and the theory of quantum electrodynamics. His secret: Seeing things from a different point of view.

Video content is everywhere in 2019. The “pivot to video” publishers made en masse two years ago in light of a cornucopia of studies and data implying that video content was not only more engaging but more effective for marketers caused a flood of new content creation.

But as much video content as there is on the web, the methods for getting that content to audiences has remained the same structurally as it has for almost four decades. Which means that the methods for scaling video content for creators and brands alike has been operating like it’s 1999, or 1989, or in some cases 1979….

As much progress as we make, we still have the same fears of innovation we did before the internet. Progress has a bad habit of wiping away its own footprints. We may move forward, but very seldom do we look back to see how we got here, and whether or not we are going to right direction. That’s absolutely true for video content, the web, and branded content. The web is the future, but the money is still in television creative, direct ads, 30-60 second messages about why THIS cereal should be YOUR cereal. (I feel like Donald Draper when I type that.) This is the thinking that got us here, but it is NOT the thinking that will take us forward. (so we are all the way back to operating like it’s 1959.)

Audiences are more skeptical of corporate branding and messaging than they ever have been. Often times the success of legacy brands is not about merit, messaging or authenticity, but about a lack of true options in the marketplace. So, we start the traditional cycle of “challenger brands” vs “legacy brands” and so on and so forth… And the hierarchy rewards those ruthless and smart enough to tear apart the legacy brands just trying to hang on. This is NOT how to win in 2019.

Authenticity. That’s both the hardest and the easiest thing to have in the world. Sometimes it’s an almost intangible quality. You know it when you see it. Today’s world rewards authenticity because unlike previous eras of media, now everyone has a voice, which is why we’ve seen an enormous shift in how and what people consume in terms of content.

To be fair, a lot of companies have attempted to address this shift in habits with SHORTER creative, SHORTER messaging. Good agencies ARE making attempts to think about things from a different point of view. Often times making short ads, quick in the feed ads, relying on the flow of platforms, rather than individual content.

But alas, this is not how to succeed in 2019 either. Unless of course you’ve got gobs and gobs of money. Which a lot of brands do, and now they are paying facebook and twitter 80% of that, to get minuscule returns.

So what should a brand be doing? What should any company who genuinely cares about their customers be doing in 2019? BUILDING YOUR AUDIENCE.

Brands don’t think in these terms because Brands aren’t used to thinking in these terms. But looking at the trend of social media influence, we have entered into a time period where the individual can have just as much if not more influence than an institution like a brand. Brands have their legacy as an advantage, but the creators have the future… And Brands know this, so they are latching onto creators just as they currently and previously latched on to other institutional publishers.

What’s the problem? The problem is authenticity and scalability. How can you scale authentic content? You can scale with a publisher, you can gain authenticity with a creator, but you can’t scale authenticity without sacrificing control of the content. Which is where we come across a problem Clay Shirky (author and current NYU professor) predicted nearly 15 years ago: institutions vs collaboration.

Institutions vs collaboration explains the biggest battle of money movement online in history. It represents the difference between banks and crypto, industry vs open source, the 20% vs the 20+80%….

That last one may need some explaining. I urge you to watch this video for a more in depth explanation of why this is so important to almost all online industries:

How does this apply to video content marketing?

It’s time to look at the problem of scalability of authentic video content from a different point of view.

If you know authentic creator-driven content is the future (and it is, despite all the objections and wishes and hopes of the largest institutions in the world) then you know it MUST start or continue to be a core element of reaching your consumers.

Building an audience is important for brands because of the increasingly fractured nature of how media is dispensed to the public. It should never be forgotten that network television used to hit 80% of the population with 4 channels. TV shows had hundreds of millions of viewers. That is not the case any longer. You need variety. You need authentic. And you need to talk about more than just yourself. Nothing is more annoying than someone who never talks about anything but themselves. And Brands need to understand the game they have chosen to play is one of competing for attention WITH OTHER PEOPLE and other individuals.

Brands are some of the first super organisms in human history to attempt to mimmic human behavior on social media. While they have an institutional body in the real world, their social media presences operate a lot more like human beings than companies. However, brands aren’t used to this and so they still try to use the system as a means to accomplish their goals. But people don’t respond to this the same way they respond to authentic content from real people.

For instance, a brand would never have a video go organically viral that they created and put no campaign of interest behind. This type of function is reserved for Super Bowl campaigns that require millions of dollars to make place and ensure a certain level of success.

But what if that WEREN’T the case? Try to look at things from a different point of view. What if brands utilized their access to resources like AI, and rather large sums of money to acquire, license and publish authentic content from the people who already follow them and love their products, or better yet produce content your core audience already loves and follows? If they did that they would create an entirely new (and significantly healthier creative system that not only utilizes authenticity of real people, but ensure thats brands are genuinely growing their own audiences, not simply throwing money at a problem as a solution as they always have.

By growing your own audience, and becoming your own media company, you are creating the best path toward direct sales in human history. A friend to friend recommendation. In 2019, that’s a share. Shares are the currency of social media for brands. Likes are useless, views are useful, but they aren’t what we want. SHARES, are a direct recommendation to hundreds, thousands, sometimes millions of people. What gets shared? Authentic content. No one shares an ad, unless they were tricked into doing so, or have an axe to grind. People talking to people about the things they care about. That is what gets shared.

What Catapult does is the textbook definition of disruption. Utilizing a combination of AI, Machine Learning, Marketplace ideology, and an “open source content creation” solution to institutional gridlock, we are taking the long arduous and still largely “manpower-driven” process of creating branded video content for ANY purpose, and reducing to a fast easy one-stop solution that requires one person to execute from any step in the creator-management-agency-brand chain.

Instead of two weeks to produce a video, it’s less than 15 minutes.

Instead of $10,000 to pay for that creative, it’s $1,000.

Instead of having to commit man hours to an exhaustive process, you get direct access to nearly limitless creative tailored to your brand, licensing ability and distribution ability all in one place, at a fraction of the cost, in a fraction of the time.

That’s catapult.

And that’s how you catapult your brand. Whether you are a small business or a large business. Just beginning in your social media brand quest, or well developed in the way the world works today for brands, you want to be ready for the next step. You want to look at the problem from a new point of view. Catapult your brand. Catapult your life.

Find out more by emailing me tj@firecatapult.com