Skinny IT was an IT hardware and services company that bundled large-scale hardware installations with robust services to businesses across the country. When they developed a new, somewhat confusing service, they turned to lofgren to help explain it. We in turn turned to the magic of video.
After owning and operating Farstar for fifteen years, Kevin was interested in something new. Something that didn’t involve the sphincter-tightening responsibility of meeting payroll every two weeks. And yet, still something almost as stressful since he wasn’t about the leave the marketing industry. HP was one of Farstar’s clients, and they had run a joint lead generation campaign with their partner Compucom. One of Compucom’s sales leaders that had called on the leads Farstar created had since founded his own company, Skinny IT. (Got that?) He and his co-founders reached out to Kevin about being their CMO at the same time Kevin was looking to sunset Farstar and the rest is history. Literal history, as Skinny IT ceased to be in 2019.
Why are we calling them a “client?” Because how Kevin acted for them is the same way Kevin acts for his current fCMO clients. (And having a category on this website called “Past Employer” would be even more confusing than this explanation.) That is, Kevin leveraged the exact same relationships with writers, designers, and developers that he uses now with his Fractional CMO clients. And also, Kevin’s time as CMO was split between three different companies (Skinny IT and two offshoots), so he was literally a fractional CMO for each one of them. See how that works? Good. Because that’s pretty much exactly how it works today.
One of the projects we created while there was an explainer video for a new product that needed a name and an identity. But more than that, it needed a way to explain itself to its audience. It was a relatively new concept – even in the world of IT – and we wanted to make it easy to consume and easier to understand.
People don’t always stop and think about the work that goes into creating any creative project, and in this case, it wouldn’t be obviously evident that we started with absolutely nothing. This isn’t unusual with a new product or company, of course. But first we had to wrap our heads around what the product did, and then we had to figure out how the product most benefited the customer. In this case, the product was called SAMS, or Services as Marketing SKUs. Which we could take time to explain here, but it’s a lot easier to watch the video (which, of course, is the point). But before the video could happen, we had to take the SAMS concept through our normal process and workshops to create a creative brief for the team that explained it all. Then we started writing the script, creating storyboards for each panel, recording a scratch voiceover track, animating the video, taking it through revisions, selecting the music, editing the music, recording the final voiceover and putting it all together.
We had already established typography, color palette and illustration styles through the natural evolution of creating various pieces of collateral for Skinny IT, so we simply extended the look and feel into this piece. We auditioned several different voice talents, but Kevin had recorded a scratch track for the animator and the CEO preferred that voice to the professionals. So, now Kevin’s also a voiceover guy, too. At least on his Match.com account.