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CEO Thought Leadership Series from Trade Show

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Doug Simon (@DSSimonDoug) , CEO of D S Simon Media (@DSSimon), met with Keith Green (@KeithsTweets), VP of Marketing and Commercial Sales at Guinness World Records (@GWR) after their presentation at the PRSA 2016 International Conference to discuss how you can effectively transform any company into an entertainment brand through the generation of quality content and the utilization of video as a social marketing tool.

In today’s vlog post, Doug chats with Keith Green, VP of Marketing and Commercial Sales at Guinness World Records, about how to turn your company into an entertainment brand. They discuss the of use of a Guinness World Record attempt as a powerful tool in generating media coverage and excitement around your brand. Doug also touches on the power of video in an effective public relations and marketing campaign and offers tips on creating compelling video that fuels your social media outreach and generates media attention.


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Doug Simon: Hi, I’m Doug Simon of D S Simon Media. I’m here with Keith Green of Guinness World Records. Earlier today, we spoke at a session about how to turn a company into an entertainment brand. Keith, thanks for being with us.

Keith Green: My pleasure. Thank you.

Doug:Great. Now we both present in this, but we’ll start with you. One key aspect of it is to utilize Guinness World Record titles in attempt to earn media. What types of organizations are considering breaking a Guinness World Record title?

Keith: Doug, that’s sort of the beauty of record breaking. It almost doesn’t matter what type of company you work for. So whether it’s a Fortune 500 company, a nonprofit, an educational institution, a small business, or a sports team– record breaking can work for just about anybody.

Doug: So, Keith, what are some of the kinds of things an organization should be thinking about to make for a successful Guinness World Record title?

Keith: Well, certainly a few things, Doug. We tell people, first of all, don’t think about the record as just a moment in time. Think about it being, potentially, sort of a campaign, and what the story is that goes into it– into making a record attempt. So, for example, the city of Huntington Beach wanted to promote the fact that their great town is a tremendous surfing destination. So what they did was they built the world’s largest surf board, which is more than 42 feet long, and 16 inches deep, and 11 feet wide. And they also set the record for the most people surfing simultaneously with 66 people.

Doug: So when something like that happens, you want to know what the story goes– what’s the story behind this story? How did that surf board get built and made and transported? And how did people practice to surf at one time? Something that’s never been done before. So think about the story behind the story, not just that sort of moment in time. One of the key things of what’s involved is Guinness World Record actually provides a judge known as an adjudicator– help certify the results, serve as a spokesperson and influencer. Tell us about that.

Keith: Yeah, it’s really a key component, and really the only way to verify immediately, on site, if a Guinness World Records title has been set or broken. So we have more than 70 of these adjudicators around the world. They undergo very intensive media training at our London headquarters. And they spend a week with the woman who did the crisis training and media training with former British Prime Minister Tony Blair. So it’s an opportunity for them to really learn and understand what to do for live shots, for certificate presentations if the event is successful or if the record is successful, and B-roll packages– all those kind of things. So they really have a full understanding of how to interact with the press, and really be sort of another spokesperson on site.

Doug: Great. Now I understand you have some questions for me. We’ll try an Olympics baton pass here.

Keith: Yeah, I like kind of having the microphone here, Doug. So obviously the power of video is very important these days, for just about anybody. Same with our clients that want to work with us and set a Guinness World Records title. And we’re always telling them, make it come to life through the power of video. So what are some things that you think our clients should consider– really anybody should consider– when making a video these days.

Doug: Sure, there are three parts to making an effective Guinness World Record video. One is for the authentication– you need to have a camera position set up that will capture the whole event or the winning moment, so to speak. So when people look later they’ll understand the record was really broken. That’s very important.

Doug: Two is you want to create content that can be distributed to journalists, broadcasters, news media. So there, what do you want to get? You want to get some of the setup– perpetration for the action. You want to get reaction at the moment. You want to get soundbites from the adjudicator, from people who are involved in the situation. And more dramatic images, perhaps, than just the moment that captures it.

Doug: Third is you want to create social media video. Guinness World Record is a tremendous social channel. And it can also be reinforced with your own brand [? organization ?] [? social ?] channel as part of a back and forth. So you want to create narrative content that makes sense, that shows a highlight moment– the creation to the excitement of the winning moment. If you do all three well, you’re going to get the widest possible distribution. Some of those videos have generated millions upon millions of views.

Keith: Terrific stuff. A lot of fun here, Doug, in Indianapolis. Thank you.