Made For TV Marketing: The Stocki Exchange

Stocki2Hospitality marketing veteran John Stocki was looking for a way to reach more people about his services and connect with other marketing professionals across the area. At the same time, Up North Media was looking for more content for its local access public television channel.

“I got a call from channel 189,” said Stocki, proposing he do a show about marketing. “They offered an opportunity to have extra creative support, and spread the word about marketing.”

Stocki didn’t hesitate, and the result was The Stocki Exchange, a 10-episode series in which Stocki interviews people from several industries about how they utilize various aspects of marketing for their business. Each episode runs 35 to 45 minutes, and after they debut on the channel, the episodes are uploaded to YouTube.

For Stocki, the appeal was manifold: getting to interact with persons he might not otherwise, reaching a new audience, and expanding his own horizons.

His first guests were Bridgett Beckwith from Short’s Brewing Co. in Bellaire and Tina Schuett from Traverse City’s Rare Bird Brewpub. They discussed some of the marketing techniques being used in the craft beer world.

The first part of the show finds Stocki and his guests discussing the topic at hand. In this instance, they talked about the different ways to convey a strong message through social media, web presence, and long form media, such as podcasts. Differentiating your product in an increasingly crowded market is always a key.

From a video perspective, they talked about how to utilize video, photos and podcasts to establish personal connections and increase web traffic for both small, local brands and larger, established brands. They also noted the importance of mobile sites and how that segment can affect overall marketing strategy and content.

It’s not simply a dull and dry discussion. For example, Stocki asked Beckwith and Schuett to name their favorite beers in a segment called One Word Answers, and he played along too. Nor is it all a one-way conversation: The two posed questions to Stocki as well, about marketing width vs. depth, how marketing on social media platforms is evolving, and more.

Stocki said video is becoming an ever-more important means of reaching potential customers and demonstrating why a company’s product or service is beneficial. Companies are now hiring videographers as an integral part of their marketing department.

Add today’s ever-changing technology and the way people are accessing information, and he believes you have a very powerful marketing tool.

“Video and mobile are very important,” said Stocki. “A picture tells a thousand words. Video tells an entire book.”

“Video blogs are a great way to reach clients,” he continued. “I think video is massively important as a part of marketing strategy.”

He’s living his advice with the show. “Instead of being (just) a consultant, I’m a real live example of someone who is taking it and using it successfully.”

Other episodes feature media representatives, restaurateurs, photographers & videographers, and others, delving into public relations, connecting emotionally with an audience, mobile marketing, and other subjects.

While he’s enamored with the possibilities of video, he’s quick to point out that it is not and should not be the only part of a marketing program. “Blogs, pictures, print, all play a part in a comprehensive marketing strategy,” he said. “Video might not be the number one part – or it might be a goldmine.”

Stocki, a Brethren native, earned his degree from Grand Valley before moving overseas and working in marketing at hotels and resorts in locales including Australia and the Middle East before returning to the area. “I had the opportunity to live in different places and travel, then I wanted to be closer to family and friends, so I moved back here.”

He looked into the job market, but eventually decided that life as a marketing consultant (a “solopreneur” as he says) offered him the best opportunity to use his skills and experience.