To Tobe, videography is more than just a film—it’s creative storytelling. As a videographer, he aims to tell that story eloquently whether it be a love story at a wedding or an in-depth documentary. With around 80% of his clients coming through Bidvine today and his business steadily growing, Tobe was able to leave his 9 to 5 job for good this year. Now he passionately pursues his dreams full-time, sharing stories through film.
How Did You Become a Filmmaker?
I’ve always had a passion for video and film. It’s always been something that I wanted to do. Before, I was working full time at a 9 to 5 job in the travel industry. On the side, I always pursued my dream of becoming a filmmaker and doing video production. Then I found Bidvine and more jobs started coming through. So, I decided to go full time and ever since it’s been going well.
How Has Using Bidvine Impacted Your Business?
Around 80% of my business comes from Bidvine. Bidvine was actually a very important part of my decision to go freelance. It has been a reliable source of jobs and definitely gave me the kick in the butt to say: ‘I’m going to go freelance with this.’ Without Bidvine, I am not sure I would have felt confident I’d be able to make it work, financially, as a freelancer. Bidvine is the steady source of clients that I needed to make this leap.
A lot of different types of jobs have come in through Bidvine as well, everything from commercial work to events and weddings.
On Your Profile, You Have 18 Hires. How Important Would You Say it is to Have a Job Marked as Hired?
Once I’ve secured a job through Bidvine, I always make sure that the customer marks me as hired. So I do follow up with the customer about that. Then, after the job, I always ask them to leave a review for me as well.
What Role do Reviews Play in Winning New Business?
Reviews are massively important for securing future business. It’s important to get reviews so that future customers can see what I’ve done. It shows that previous customers are happy with your services.
I often mention them to a customer when I send a bid. I might say, “Have a look at my Bidvine profile as well. There are some reviews from happy couples.” Actually, even when I have a client coming directly to me and not through Bidvine but from a referral or from my website, I still refer them to the reviews I got on Bidvine. Reviews are massive catalysts to gaining more customers.
Photo credit: Tobe Meneses
As a Filmmaker How Do You Share Examples of Your Previous Work With Prospective Clients?
It’s important to send them a sample video, like your show reel for example. I usually send them a few of my highlight videos that I’ve shot before as links accompanying my bid. After watching them, they usually come back and say something like, ‘We really like your work. This is exactly what we’ve been looking for.’ Then we go ahead from there.
How Important is it to Keep Bidding?
You have to be very persistent. Not every bid is a hire, obviously, so you just have to keep at it. You keep sending out bids until you learn what works the best. I check my Bidvine requests pretty much daily. Consistency is a really important thing. It can take a lot of effort to get jobs but once you get your first few hires, it keeps rolling in.
Also, when you’re bidding make sure to personalise it to the customer’s request. When I write a bid I address what they want while also showing them what my business is about. That way they get a feel for me and my services. Don’t get too wordy though. It’s also important to be very concise and direct as to what you can offer them.
What Goes Into Creating a Winning Profile?
At the beginning, you start with an empty profile but they walk you through what you need to add in order to make your profile stand out. You find out that you need to add pictures, credentials such as your website, and your social media platforms as well. Including all of these shows how you are present in the online environment and demonstrates that you are actually a credible and reliable supplier of your business.
Photo credit: Tobe Meneses
Have You Referred Other Professionals to Bidvine?
I’ve referred quite a few videographers around London and actually two wedding photographers as well. When I talk to other photographers about winning business, I always tell them, “I’ve been using Bidvine. It’s been really helpful,” then I tell them they should check it out as well.
What is The Most Rewarding Aspect of Your Job?
I love the creative aspect of it. When you record a wedding, it’s a story – a story of the love of two people. Once you’ve actually finished your job, put the product together and sent it to the couple, having them look through it and be happy with your work is the best feeling. It’s incredibly satisfying.
What is The Most Memorable Job You’ve Won Through Bidvine?
My most memorable job is actually a documentary project that I am doing right now. It’s a very inspirational and deep project that we’ve been working on for a few months. The documentary is about a kid with heart failure who had several operations and was on the edge of death several times and continued to survive. Through the documentary, we are trying to tell the life story of this boy, how he endured the struggles of his childhood and the progress he is making towards healing. It’s very inspiring and obviously very challenging to shoot, mostly emotionally. But it’s great that through Bidvine I was able to secure a wide variety of videography jobs, this being one of the long-term ones.
See more about Tobe:
Tobe Productions, London, UK