From Wine to Investing: The Idea Decanter Journey into Finance

Idea Decanter co-founders Sharon Gottula and Laura Garfield sat down with Carson Coaching’s podcast “Framework” hosts Ana Trujillo Limon and Jamie Hopkins to discuss how they paved their own path in the finance industry for video marketing services.

Idea Decanter wasn’t always fiercely focused on creating video marketing for the financial services industry. In fact, as the name of the business suggests, the company’s first clients were in the wine industry. Back in 2014, Laura and Sharon quickly learned that producing videos during harvest called for some early morning shoots and, you guessed it, getting paid with cases of wine.

“It was nice for a while, but we still had mortgages to pay,” Sharon laughs.

As Idea Decanter shared the wine video projects the company created on social media, financial advisors started reaching out and asking if they could get some videos, too. “About 18 months into Idea Decanter, we made the shift from wine to finance,” Laura recalls.

Creating “Rock Stars” On Camera

Because of Laura’s background in TV news and Sharon’s background in photography, their business they built was unique among video marketing agencies.

From the beginning, performance coaching was an important part of each video shoot. “We try to hand hold advisors so they can be the best they can be,” Sharon says.

Through one-on-one performance coaching, financial advisors get help to enhance their delivery when the camera is rolling.

What makes it attractive to a lot of advisors, Sharon explains, is that it’s not just like I’m going to stare at a camera in my office with a piece of paper and try to say a script.

Making Finance Relatable

When it comes to financial advising, you might start thinking about 401(k)s, Social Security, or retirement funds. Though these are key topics in discussing your financial future, they aren’t always the most engaging for a general audience.

“When you think about building relationships, there’s so many topics that you can bring to your marketing that have nothing to do with your business but that show that you care and that you’re human.” Says Sharon. Those relatable topics are the focus of Idea Decanter’s process.

Adding personal stories also makes an advisors’ videos relatable. “I think customization is really important,” explains Laura. “For advisors, relationships are front and center and building trust is so important. Cookie-cutter video doesn’t necessarily help you get there.”

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