BlogThe latest
and greatest

The Perfect Father’s Day?

Coming up on the celebration of my 8th one of these, I ask this question – what is the perfect Father’s Day?  We all have our different answers, and our answers have probably changed over time.  For me, five years ago, all I wanted was golf and sleep.  But as the kids get older, sleep later and scream less, they become part of that utopia.

For me, the dream day has become this: plan nothing.  Do nothing.  Eat everything.  That’s probably because the other 364 days of the year have become so hectic, I crave sitting still.  Here’s a video about my ideal Father’s Day for 2014.  How do you celebrate the day?



Share Button

Casting Call – May 14, 2014








Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill casting call: We need to interview dads with their young kids (age 4-12) for a social media campaign about a science-based network show. NO science knowledge is necessary. Must be available to shoot next Tuesday afternoon (May 20th) in Raleigh. We need big personalities! Email us if you’re interested. Thank you!


Share Button

Can a FROZEN song get my kid to eat veggies?


Do you want to eat some broccoli?

We try.  Really hard.  And we are failing. Hard.

We’ve read books, watched documentaries, asked all of our friends, even befriended someone called the Food Babe, in our quest to eat healthy.
We’ve learned we live in a world where food is rarely real food anymore.  Something as harmful as Macaroni and Cheese has PETROLEUM in it, a lot of supermarket cheese has cellulose (wood pulp), bread frequently has an additive used in yoga mats, and vanilla ice cream is often sweetened by Castoreum.
Castoreum is a Beaver’s Anal Glands.
Armed with all this information for over a year, we should be telling you a grand success story: That our family is eating nothing but real food, and that our children are super healthy.
The truth is, this is a lot harder than we thought it would be.  Why? because our 4-year old’s favorite foods are the ones we just mentioned. Mac and cheese, pizza, bread and ice cream.
If you’re scoring at home that’s petroleum, wood pulp, yoga mat and beaver anus.
Those organic apples, peas, and sprouted grain breads? We put them on his plate every night. He sniffs them out like a hound dog and turns up his nose.
Don’t get us wrong, Penn Charles is a great kid… good-natured, happy,  but maddeningly picky.  His occasional tantrums, we fear, are made worse by a diet that’s about as wholesome as Cinemax after midnight.

As a family that has watched Frozen 100 times and listened to the soundtrack another 12,596 times, we now equate our nightly plight to get him to eat to Anna, knocking on that door, ever so sweetly trying to coax her sister to break out of the rut and join her in a better, healthier life.
And that’s why we had to make this song.. Who knows? He’s such a Frozen addict, maybe this’ll get him to eat Broccoli.
Click here to watch the video.


Share Button


CASTING CALL FOR PET LOVERS: Looking for smart phone video of your pet doing funny, touching, memorable, crazy things.  We need everything from pets doing funny pee pee dances, chewing shoes, to licking their butts. And, of course, those cute cuddly pics too.
IMPORTANT:  Must be shot horizontally, not vertically. See image below for examples. Email us your You Tube link or email us directly at It may be used in a national video campaign Greenroom Communications LLC is creating.  THANKS!

iphone video tutorial

Share Button

Survey: Video Helps Persuade 73% of People to Buy a Product or Service

Courtesy of Search Engine Watch

This morning, Animoto reported new survey results that show video has a positive impact on purchase decisions and drives brand engagement. The new Animoto Online and Mobile Video Study surveyed 1,000 U.S. consumers and revealed that nearly three-quarters (73 percent) of respondents are more likely to purchase a product or service if they can watch a video explaining it beforehand.

“The business benefits of using video to increase discovery, traffic, engagement and conversion are widely documented, but we were curious about whether consumers actually find business videos helpful,” said Brad Jefferson, CEO of Animoto. “The data shows that there’s a real power in business videos to help people make confident shopping decisions. Further, consumers develop a more positive impression of companies that use video and even find such companies to be more trustworthy. Businesses that don’t embrace video are overlooking a valuable way to reach their customers and will struggle to keep up with the competition.”

Videos Play a Pivotal Role in Decision-Making During All Stages of the Customer Experience

Nearly all the respondents (96 percent) find videos helpful when making purchase decisions online – creating a significant opportunity for small businesses to capitalize by offering more video. The findings also show that videos hold tremendous value for driving brand awareness throughout the purchase process as well as post-purchase engagement:

  • 93 percent of respondents find video helpful in comparison shopping.
  • 87 percent of respondents find video helpful for researching additional items from the same brand.
  • 93 percent of respondents find video helpful for instructions post-purchase.

Video Drives Brand Engagement, Leaves Consumers With Positive Impression

According to the study, video helps businesses connect with their customers and leaves consumers with a positive impression of their brand:

  • 71 percent of respondents agree that watching video content produced by businesses leaves them with a positive impression of a brand/service/company.
  • Nearly two-thirds (64 percent) of respondents find it helpful to watch videos to learn more about the company they will purchase from.
  • 58 percent of respondents consider companies that produce video content to be more trustworthy.

Consumers Speak Out About Video Preferences

Longer videos aren’t necessarily more effective, with 83 percent of respondents citing the ideal length of a video to inform a purchase decision is five minutes or less.

Respondents also had interesting views on what types of video they would like to see more. From a tour of a restaurant’s ocean view to an interview with a conference speaker, people want to watch more video across industries, products, and services:

  • 42 percent of all respondents would like to see more product description or service demonstration videos, such as a 360 view of a product, how to play a game, or use a phone.
  • People would like to see more video content about electronics (57 percent), restaurants (39 percent), travel (34 percent), and exercise/fitness (33 percent).


Share Button


March 10, 2014 – Penn Holderness

We’ve gotten a ton of emails, and interest, after the release of our most recent “Next Day Video” about Oscar Night. The majority of the emails asked the simple question : How did you turn that video around so quickly?

The Oscars ended after midnight, and the video, which included original music, and a bunch of Oscar moments. went live on youtube at 4:30 AM, or a couple hours before people started logging on the next morning.

We did this to make a point to prospective clients – a good video does not always need a storyboard, a DP, three rounds of edits and a month of post production work.  In fact, in this new social media-driven world, a lot of times ads, and campaigns can grow stale if they take too much time to post them.

Oreo set an amazing example at last year’s Super Bowl.  They put a “marketing war room” together the night of the Super Bowl. When a “water-cooler event” happened, they got to work.  The power went out, and they put the now-famous “you can still dunk in the dark” pic on social media.  It blew up.  In fact, it became the biggest advertising success of the night, at an infinitesimal fraction of the cost to run a TV ad.











That motivated us to try the first-ever “Video War Room” the night of the Oscars.  Here were the rules:

1. Come into it with the framework of something good.  For us, it was the theme that as parents we didn’t see any of these movies.  We had already written the “hook” (the chorus), and several verses as well, knowing many of them would get cut for the sake of more current events.

2. Be patient.  This is something you learn as a news reporter.  Don’t take the first good thing you hear and skedaddle to the editing room.  Sit back, and digest what is going on.  Ellen had a great opening monologue (especially the Liza Minelli bit), but if we had taken that and gotten to work, we would’ve missed the water-cooler event of the night (Paging Mr. Travolta…)

3. Listen to your friends. If possible, watch the event with buddies, people who don’t have a vested interest in creating the video. They will give you an honest reaction to everything that is going on.

4. Scour Twitter.  That is honestly 99% of what my wife did that night.  We were actually downstairs making some changes when Adele Dazeem happened.  Twitter blew up, we went upstairs and hit rewind, and we knew we had the water-cooler event.

5. Don’t have too many cooks in the kitchen.  For a War Room, you need the smartest people you know, but one clear voice that will make the final decisions.  If that voice can also be the writer and editor, that is ideal.

6. S.M.A.S.H.  This is a strategy Greenroom adopted on its first day, and it is still working well.  make sure your production includes each of the following:

Speed : explained above – quick turnaround keeps it fresh

Music : Whether its at the forefront, a bed or and open/close, it’s pretty standard for anything that isn’t a vine or gif.

Asymmetry : Look for, or create, moments that are out of balance, things that you don’t normally see.

Spontaneity : in the course of the writing, editing, and shooting, don’t be afraid to take any additional great moments and fit them into the piece.  They may not have been part of your original plan, but they are often the best, and most memorable, moments.

Humor : Not for every video, but unless it’s an incredibly serious subject, you need to find a way to make the viewer smile.  How? That’s worth an entirely different blog post.

Thanks for reading… Agree? Disagree? By all means, let me know.

~ Penn


Share Button

Oscars with the Holderness Family – #dayaftervideo

I remember the last time Ellen hosted the Oscars. It was seven years ago, and we had just had our first child… which means that during Oscar season, Kim was in her third trimester and there was NO better place to take her than a dark, climate controlled room. So we saw every single best picture nomination, even a few foreign films and documentaries. We were movie buffs, and we were better for it. MOVIES ARE AWESOME.

Seven years later, well, just watch the video. We have an incredibly active family. Watch the video here.

oscar night with holderness family

Share Button

SNOW DAY: The Musical is spreading…

Thanks for the shout out Right This Minute.   This fun website features videos first, before they go viral.

Share Button


Families, how do you REALLY feel about snow days with your kids? We had a snow day yesterday (Wednesday, February 12), and decided to use the day putting this together…

Thanks to our neighbor Donnie, who drove our car through the cul de sac during the biggest snowstorm we’ve had in maybe a decade, and our neighbor Ella, who was the only camera person outside our family (and she’s 13!). Also thanks to that really nice woman from Twitter who made me a floating Bob Costas head. It takes a village to make a moderately amusing music video.

Oh and school is closed again today and I’m sure tomorrow.


Share Button

XMAS Jammies Part 2

#XMAS Jammies Part 2Ahh, the magic of the holidays.  The happiness (and insanity) that happens when families get together… the look on a child’s face while tearing apart wrapping paper.

And, one of my favorite parts, the fake reaction you give your spouse when you open a clothing box and it’s something that you would NEVER wear.

“Oh, um, honey, I, uh, love it!”

Granted, this goes both ways.  10 years ago I bought my wife a pair of shoes that she has worn TWICE.  She won’t give them away or chuck them because of their “sentimental” value, but what was I thinking? Clothing is so incredibly personal.  What’s more, most of us would rather grin and wear it than disappoint our loved ones.

So, lets get it all out on the table.  Ladies, here is some shopping advice from the husbands who absolutely adore you, but haven’t had the courage to say, “you really want me to wear THAT?”


Share Button