This morning, I woke up to a message from the guy who helps with my personal brand. He said that the audio recording I did with Laura, Amber Spears, and Jimmy Parent was now ready to launch, and that he had put it on YouTube, complete with closed captions, and set it to premier at 9 am PST.💬
I was super excited to hear this…
So I went to the preview link and began to play it. As I was listening, I started writing notes on different parts of the conversation, so I could send an email to my list and post something in Justin and Stefan Talk Copy telling you to go check the convo out. ✍
As it continued to play, though, I noticed something. From about the 1 hour and 18-minute mark to the 1 hour and 28 minute mark…🤨
The closed captions were off.
Not just a little off, I’m saying they don’t sync up at all. And they were pointless because a viewer would have no idea what’s going on.🤷♂
So, I bought this up to my marketing guy and he said to me, “yeah, we had to rush that part. But the final 25 minutes should all be synced up.”
That wasn’t a good enough answer for me.
I told him he needed to pull the video off YouTube and get that section fixed, and that once it was fixed, I’ll promote it to my list and on Facebook.
Now, here’s the thing…
These closed captions are done in the form of little conversation bubbles that point to whoever is speaking, so they’re a LOT of work. Especially in a video where everyone, besides Jimmy, is a little drunk, and four different people are all talking back-and-forth with rapid transitions.
So yeah, adding closed captions has been a huge pain in the ass for my marketing guy. (To be fair it was his idea though, lol.) He and some of my other team members have spent weeks working on this already. In hindsight, the team realized that their approach was a mistake, and not an effective use of my money, or their time.
So, lesson learned, and in the future, if I do long-ass audio like this, I’ll probably just release it without closed captions. But, since for this one, they DID do the closed captions, and since the closed captions are honestly super helpful…
I told my marketing guy that we’ve got to finish strong.
This truly is an incredible conversation, it’s LOADED with gems and good takeaways about marketing, entrepreneurship, mindset, mentorship, and more.
I can just imagine some person who is really intensely watching/listening, they’re over an hour in and then suddenly the closed captions stop synching up with the audio. It gets confusing, they don’t know what’s happening, and they stop engaging.
What kind of “user experience” is that?
Even if it is just a ten-minute period, if we’d released the video in that form, most people would have dropped off at that point. Which is extra nuts, because you figure if someone is over an hour into watching a video you made they’re obviously someone who really resonates with your content and messaging, so that’s the last person you want to be turning off.
Here’s why I’m sharing this with you:
This whole experience is, for me, analogous to the prospect’s experience when they’re engaging with a long-form sales letter.
This is true whether it’s a text sales letter or a video sales letter. It doesn’t matter how good your headline is, how killer your lead is, how strong your background story is, or how unique your mechanism is…
If there’s just ONE weak part in your sales letter…
If it’s confusing, or the design elements are off, or the wrong copy shows up, it’s game over. Yet, what I see a lot of times from both copywriters and business owners alike, to steal a basketball phrase, they start with a $99 move but end with a $0.10 finish.
Meaning, the headline and lead are good, maybe most of the other parts are good too, but then they get to the mechanism or the product part, and they lose all of that momentum they’ve been building.
Maybe the mechanism is super basic – like, “the real reason you’re fat is because of carbs!”, or there’s just one single paragraph explaining what the product is (kind of), and yet, the copywriter or business owner is hoping it’ll be enough and that the prospect will still buy what they’re selling since the rest of the copy was so good.
It just doesn’t work that way, though.
I mean sure, there’s always a small percentage of people who will buy anything, but just marketing to those people is NOT enough to have major success as a writer or business owner.
You’ve got to capture a broader market. And if you’re not explaining what the product actually is, or how to use it, or if there’s some other big part of your copy that’s missing, you are never going to reach the level of success you hoped for.
So yeah, I am really excited to share that conversation with you, but you’re not going to get to hear it until that one part is fixed. I’m okay with small issues – like the wrong name showing up in the closed captions for a second, a word or two being transcribed wrong, I mean, it’s a two-hour conversation, so I get that tiny mistakes are going to happen.
Tiny mistakes are generally okay (remember, perfection is the enemy), but big mistakes – like an entire part being screwed up – are unacceptable. And hopefully, you can see the difference.
P.S. This post originally came from an email I sent to my private list. If you want to see more stuff like this from me, you can apply to join my list using this link.