How Viral Marketing Launched a Successful Startup: REP Interactive

Repost from Hub LA Member CreatorUp’s Blog. See the original post here.

Mike Tringe, Founder of CreatorUp, wrote this blog post after a JuiceUp morning on October 10. JuiceUps are our twice-monthly (every second and fourth Friday) power breakfast and networking event featuring successful entrepreneurs providing insight to their best practices, experiences, and social missions. CreatorUp co-hosts JuiceUps with Hub LA. On October 10, Mike Tringe moderated a Q&A and interview with Steve Gatena, founder of marketing agency REP Interactive.

You’ve heard of using videos to grow a business, but what is viral marketing and how could it help you actually launch your business? Learn from Steve Gatena, CEO of REP Interactive, who launched his startup with a viral video and now works with major corporate clients like Coldwell Banker on their video marketing strategy.

How many times have your heard someone say: just make a viral video? If only it were that easy. But that’s exactly what Steve Gatena, CEO of REP Interactive, a video production and marketing agency did to launch his business.

While Steve was at USC, his final project for his business class was to create a web series that would launch a business. And his concept was to create a video that everyone would want to watch and share. He believed there were certain ingredients – and when he tested his idea, he was right. His pilot “Most Expensive Homes in the World” earned over 1.2M views and launched an entire series on homes from Aspen to Napa.

Here’s the kicker. Steve had no video production experience whatsoever before launching this web series. But what he did have – was the interest to teach himself what to do, and the connections to help him get it done.

Following the launch of Steve’s web series, instead of him chasing down clients begging for work, he had major corporate clients calling him asking to hire his company. His web series helped launch his company, and created a tipping point for his company’s success which now has a great client list and its own employee roster.

You’re probably familiar with the Dollar Shave Club video that’s just over a minute thirty seconds long, but that now has 16.6 M views.

Have you considered how this kind of video strategy could work for you? What if it was creative, simple, and fun? And even if you’re not trying to launch something, there are some key video marketing strategies that you can use to create videos that are not just found, but that are searched for and shared.

Discover Steve’s story about how he used viral marketing to help him launch his company, and learn more about what is viral marketing:

More about Steve: Founder, Chairman, and CEO of REP Interactive, the fastest growing video marketing and production services agency in the United States. In 2014, REP Interactive was nominated for Boutique Agency of the Year by ThinkLA and in 2013 and nominated by Mashable for Mashies Best New Marketing Agency. Recently, Steve was named #8 on FORBES Magazine’s list of Famous Multi-Generational Entrepreneurs.

As the CEO of REP Interactive, Steve has won nearly one hundred awards for his work in video marketing and communication for brands like Coldwell Banker, the Los Angeles Dodgers, and Marriott Hotels. REP Interactive has also won Telly Awards, W3 Awards, and Communicator Awards for its pro-bono work with the Girl Scouts of America, Big Brothers Big Sisters, and the Los Angeles Fire Department.

VideoFort, Hollywood’s largest stock footage manufacturer, is a subsidiary of REP Interactive and was founded by Steve Gatena and Alan Purwin. VideoFort specializes in nature, travel, and aerial footage. VideoFort content has been featured in blockbuster movies like Transformers, award-winning TV shows such as Discovery Planet Earth, and major broadcast television commercials.

In college, Gatena played football for the University of Southern California (USC), where he won the 2009 Rose Bowl Championship and earned his Master’s Degree. He also holds an Honorable Discharge from the United States Air Force Academy. Fun fact about Steve – he started REP Interactive as a homework assignment at USC, where he created the first ever “viral video” for the real estate industry, generating more than twenty million dollars in sales.

The next JuiceUp is Friday, October 24, featuring CEO of Genius Juice Alex Bayer. More info and RSVP here.

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