The average goldfish has the dismal attention span of 9 seconds. 
Humans now have a shorter attention span than a goldfish, losing concentration after a mere 8 seconds. It’s a surprising statistic, but we’re not here to shame any goldfish (or humans). With the average human attention span so low and the amount of advertising noise so high, it’s important to make every marketing effort count.

That’s why we attended VidTalks 2018 this year, a leading Canadian video marketing conference. VidTalks took place on April 18, 2018 at the Vancouver Convention Centre. This year’s event featured 15 speakers from various digital marketing and tech companies who shared insights on growing one’s digital presence and sales performance through video marketing.

The speakers included:


The morning panel included speakers from Pink Orchid, Talkshop Studio, and Hashtag Communications.


The event took place on a sunny Wednesday with the nearby Pacific Ocean’s water sparkling through the convention centre’s windows. The day featured a promising lineup of speakers and a crowd of eager marketing specialists, videographers, and entrepreneurs ready to learn from top companies. Check out the talks that stood out to us below.


Robin Panish, Customer Lifecycle Marketing at Wistia

“Growing Your Brand & Business With Video Marketing”


Robin Panish started off the day on a memorable note: she asked everyone to turn to someone new on their right and introduce themselves and share their favourite colour, activity, and childhood summer memory.  The point of this exercise, you ask? To build a connection with someone. This is what video software company Wistia—and video marketing—is all about. By offering something raw and authentic to the viewer, you’re telling them a story while also making them part of your family. These are the best kinds of videos, Panish explained.

So, why use video?

  • It builds trust (as you can put a face to a brand)
  • Show and tell (it’s an easier way of teaching something)
  • Builds conversion (your authenticity will drive sales home)

She then went on to give examples of all the places video can be included:

  • Recruiting
  • Onboarding
  • Following up on a cold call
  • Customer support
  • Help Docs
  • When a customer unsubscribes

Overall, Panish made a lively argument about the power of storytelling through video marketing. We were definitely not the only attendants who felt inspired by Wistia’s oddball videos and fun-loving team.


Robin Panish, Customer Lifecycle Marketing at Wistia


Jessica Seymour, Video Production Specialist at Thinkific

“Creating High-Quality Video Content for Your Brand”


80% of content consumed online is video, Jessica Seymour started off by saying. Thinkific is an online course platform for businesses and video is used across all of their channels, whether it be a webinar, tutorial, or promotion.

Seymour took everyone through the various technical equipment needed to create a video. The best part? You don’t need the best, or much, equipment to get started!

These are some of the best tips and tricks Seymour offered:

  • You can film with your cell phone but don’t use the mic. Invest in small rode mike instead, which you can attach.
  • Audio is the most integral part of a video, make sure to soundproof.
  • 3-point lighting can easily be set up with three lamps to create a “talking head” or “webinar” station.
  • Don’t have lamps? Use natural lighting.
  • Jewel tones look best on camera.
  • Punctuate and exaggerate when speaking on camera.
  • Use the rules of thirds when framing a shot.
  • Use your staff as actors in a natural and comfortable environment.

A lot of companies don’t have the equipment, knowledge, or time to go hardcore with video and this is what often scares them off from trying. Seymour’s talk was very useful in laying out the simplest way of just going for it.


VidTalks 2018 - Jessica Seymour, Thinkific

Jessica Seymour, Video Production Specialist at Thinkific


Tina Stokes, Account Director, 6S Marketing

“Expanding Your Market Reach with Social Media Ads”


Tina Stokes began her speech after the lunch break and she began by covering the advantages of promoting video: greater reach, greater engagement, cost-effectiveness, and granular targeting. Essentially, if you promote your video, it is more likely to reach new customers.

She then took the audience through the customer journey, also known as the magnific marketing funnel, and explained which video format is best at every step of the way:

  • Awareness: use simple and short bumper ads on YouTube and Instagram Stories
  • Education and Consideration: use news stream and in-stream ads on Youtube and Facebook with a focus on products or services
  • Engagement: use mobile-only Canvas and collection ads on Facebook, and make it a fully interactive experience, like live streaming  
  • Conversion: use lead generation/shopping card ads (“sponsored” ads which show up on the Facebook news stream)

Many companies limit their social ads to one or two kinds; Stokes’ talk was very succinct and it gave the audience a lot to think about. She left the audience with her final video marketing tips:

  1. Pick your target audience appropriately (target those who want to see your video)
  2. Be as granular as possible in targeting your audience (look at demographics, interests, life events, remarketing, and custom audiences)
  3. Be highly relevant with your social ad copy for every channel (customize it to the platform and to your audience)


Sunny Lenarduzzi, Video Marketing & Branding Expert

“Customer Acquisition Through YouTube and Video Content Marketing”


Sunny Lenarduzzi followed after Tina Stokes’ presentation in the afternoon and she hooked everyone in with the line: “How do you make money?” She said it’s easy: paid advertising and attraction. 

YouTube is the second largest search engine after Google (and coincidentally, it’s also owned by Google), making it a very powerful platform for business. 

Here’s her “Profitable Content Strategy” for reaching current viewers and attracting new customers: 

  1. FAQ: Create and name videos based on Frequently Asked Questions your company receives.
  2. Competition and Community Hubs: check out what competition is doing, copy it, and make it better.
  3. Trends: capitalize on them.
  4. Keywords: use the right title and make it human.

She also shared her “Hot Script Formula” for what every YouTube video should have:

  • A hook to draw the viewer in
  • A testimonial proving your video will help
  • Sequential steps for the viewer to take afterward
  • 2 Calls to Action: 1 for conversion (to get more customers) and 1 for engagement (to increase rankings)


Sunny Lenarduzzi, Video Marketing & Branding Expert


Canadian Web Hosting is a leader in web hosting and infrastructure servicesBut above all, we’re passionate about technology and how it can be utilized to communicate, educate, learn, and grow. We had a great time learning about video marketing at VidTalks 2018. Stay tuned to see how we take everything we learned and put it into action! 

Did you attend VidTalks 2018? Who were your favourite speakers?