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 As the “Gold Medal” winner in Cisco’s internal London 2012 Olympic Video Contest, Systems Engineer Steve Cramer won a trip of a lifetime—six nights in London during the 2012 London Olympic Games. Before learning about his notable participation using video, let’s start off by watching his award-winning video that answers the question, “What do YOU make possible in your daily life for your family, friends, and community—or at work?”

How Steve Uses Video for Work

Besides the London 2012 video Steve created, he has also played around with innovative ways of using video for work. In the past, when customers were brought in to the company for discussions, he noticed that using PowerPoint presentations oftentimes lost customers’ attention and interest during their conversations. Steve experimented with a new tactic of sharing short, interactive video tutorials illustrating engineering concepts to customers before they company visits. For instance, for a BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) concept, instead of using a slide that defines what BYOD is with words, Steve recorded a video of himself taking his iPad to actually show how the onboard process worked and the steps of what the user experience would be like.

Showing features “in action” rather than verbally on a slide gave Steve more flexibility in explaining certain technical topics that don’t translate well onto slides. During in-person meetings held afterward, Steve found that customers had a better foundational grasp of these concepts allowing their conversations to move along quicker and more efficiently. Recognizing the value of leveraging engaging videos to get a “head start” for fostering customer relationships has increased Steve’s work effectiveness.

Steve’s Video Best Practices

So what’s Steve’s tip for others using video? He claims that most important of all is to first and foremost have a concept in mind of what idea you want to convey to your audience and how you want to do so. When critiquing your video, he advises to put yourself in the viewer’s perspective and ask yourself, “Would I want to watch this video? Is the idea conveyed interesting to me?” Having a plan of some sort before starting out, thinking through how you want to flush it out by way of the video and then making sure you’re fully engaged throughout the duration of the video ensures that you’re able to create an optimal product.

What does Steve have planned in regards to his upcoming social media activities? Look out for his unofficial new blog series which will be used to promote short, simple (2 to 3 minute) videos that share concepts within his area of expertise and continue driving conversations with customers more effectively.

Meet Our SMEs” is a new blog series designed to acquaint you with some of our behind-the-scenes Cisco SMEs (subject matter experts) who have gone above and beyond to integrate social media into their day job. In addition to introducing you to their background and areas of expertise, we have highlighted some of their social media achievements and best practices. We hope you find these SMEs’ stories interesting and possibly even applicable to enhancing your own social media practice.

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