Why Gear Doesn’t Matter as Much as You Think it Does with Dan Bennett

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It’s easy to think your content will get better if you just have the right gear. Alas, a $1000 camera can’t save you if you’re not spending time on the content. But that doesn’t mean you can’t look and sound good. So today brought in Dan Bennett, who’s built his business on making people look and sound great on camera. Spoiler alert: This almost never results in buying new gear. Instead, we talk about small tweaks you can make. Then we talk about the growing importance of videos for podcasting.

Top Takeaways:

  • Audio is king. If you can only upgrade one thing, make it audio. And remember that you don’t need the top-of-the-line mic. In fact, you can sound great on a $40 mic if you have the right technique and environment.
  • Looking good doesn’t require an expensive camera. Lighting is a big part of it – get a few white lights and position them properly to give yourself the best possible picture for your camera to capture. Oh, and a little makeup to reduce your face shine goes a long way too.
  • But really, it’s about story-telling and getting your reps in. You can’t make a good video if you don’t make video. So use the best of what you have and start recording!

Show Notes:


Joe Casabona: It’s easy to think your content will get better if you just have the right gear. But alas, a $1000 camera can’t save you if you’re not spending time on the content. That doesn’t mean you can’t look and sound good though.

So today brought in Dan Bennett, who’s built his business on making people look and sound great on camera. Spoiler alert: This almost never results in buying new gear. Instead, we talk about small tweaks you can make. Then we talk about the growing importance of videos for podcasting.

Things to look out for: what you should upgrade if you can only upgrade one thing, how looking good doesn’t require an expensive camera and the thing that is really more important, and the importance of storytelling and getting your reps in. Because as good as you can look on camera, if you’re not being compelling, no one’s going to care.

This is a great episode. There’s going to be rich show notes, which you can find over at howibuilt.it/290. Thanks to this week’s sponsors, Nexcess, TextExpander, and LearnDash. Be sure to check them out. You’ll hear about them later on in the show. But for now, let’s get to the intro and then the interview.

[00:01:31] <music>

Intro: Hey, everybody, and welcome to How I Built It, the podcast where you get free coaching calls from successful creators. Each week, you get actionable advice on how you can build a better content business to increase revenue and establish yourself as an authority. I’m your host Joe Casabona. Now let’s get to it.

[00:01:53] <music>

Joe Casabona: All right, I am here with Dan Bennett, The Antipreneur. Dan and I met in Jay Clouse’s Creator Science community. I put out a call for guests. He was one of the people who responded.

And I’m really excited because as we record this, YouTube has just kind of quietly rolled out their podcast interface area thing. So first, we’re gonna talk about what makes good video, then we’re going to talk about YouTube and podcasting, and then Dan and I are gonna talk about our own podcast. So let’s bring in Dan. I’ve already talked too much for this intro. Dan, how are you today?

Dan Bennett: I’m good. I’ve got coffee. Caffeine is rolling through the blood. Been looking forward to this for a while. So feeling good and ready to go.

Joe Casabona: Yeah, likewise. I think we had to cancel the first one, right, because I don’t know how schedules work. I got sick at some point.

Dan Bennett: Digital calendars are always moving.

Joe Casabona: Yes. Yeah, that’s exactly right. You said in the pre-show before we started recording that you are down the street from Podcast Movement, which is happening right now. Is that right?

Dan Bennett: Yeah, yeah. I’m in North Fort Worth, and it was about a 30-minute drive over to downtown Dallas.

Joe Casabona: Nice.

Dan Bennett: I popped in there and saw some of our internet friends. When I saw them, I’m like, “Oh my God. I knew you guys had full bodies. I knew it.” It’s nice to put some legs with a face.

Joe Casabona: Yes, absolutely. That’s amazing. I have a pretty good FOMO. I purposely decided not to go to Podcast Movement this year because I was doing other traveling and the last time I went it was kind of a bust. But now my whole business focuses around podcasting and consulting and I’m like, “Yeah, this probably would have been good.”

Now I know a bunch of people from the community who are there, like from Jay’s community who are there and I’m like, “It probably would have been good to go to this.” But there’s always next year. I think next year it’s in Las Vegas, if I’m not mistaken. Maybe that Evolutions. They move it every year. Also, Texas in August sounds like a nightmare to me.

Dan Bennett: You know what’s funny is it’s been 100 degrees for about 50, 60 days straight but right now it’s in the 80s. But we just had this weird two-day monsoon thing where flights were getting canceled and couple roads were underwater. So not the best time to go to Dallas right now anyway.

Joe Casabona: Yeah. Wow. Wow. That’s wild. Well, here’s my half-hearted attempt at a segue. One of the things at Podcast Movement that I see a ton of, there are all these booths and all these vendors, is the gear. I actually bought my Cloudlifter at Podcast Movement.

Dan Bennett: Nice.

Joe Casabona: As creators, me in the podcast space, you are in the video space, people are always asking me, “What gear do you use?” I mean, I have a really sick camera and lens and whatever. I know you have a very similar setup for when you record your videos.

Before we get into the question where we already know the answer—because the title of this episode is going to be “do you need really good gear to make good content?”—what is your setup journey? I don’t want to put the emphasis on what your current setup is. I want to put it on where you were and how long it took you to get there. Because I think a lot of people are like, “Yeah, this person just had like $10,000 worth of stuff around.”

Dan Bennett: So the short version there is long time ago I was brought into a video production company as their graphic design lead. And they were doing a lot of 2D animation and motion graphics, and they needed original vectorized artwork created for that stuff. So I came in doing that.

And then during a lot of our slow times—I also just love learning—I’d be jumping on set, learning the camera, editing something. Got heavily involved in like after effects because we were making the art, I was creating move so I kind of wanted to learn that too.

I realized I wasn’t going to be given the things I was told I’d be given in that company so I struck out on my own. I went out with a very, very, very, very used T3i, a Canon T3i.

Joe Casabona: Nice.

Dan Bennett: There was no microphone, no lights, no nothing, just this janky little camera that nowadays you could probably buy used for 50 bucks, and started selling my services. So I went from having access to a lot of really high end gear to striking out on my own with one little camera.

I will say I was in business for myself before then. So I like to think ahead as much as possible. And I did secure projects. The first three projects I did as a freelancer with video before secured payment, before the project began, I rented the equipment that I used on the project. So I still showed up with really nice stuff. I just didn’t own it until about my fourth project and then I had enough to buy my own.

So that was the journey. Get teased with a bunch of great equipment, start off with just a janky little camera, and then build back up to my own.

Joe Casabona: Nice. That’s really smart, renting the equipment. I DJ’d a handful of times in high school, and I would borrow my high school’s equipment for those gigs. I had access to all that stuff. One of the people who got me the gigs also worked at the high school. So it was like, yeah, just use Burke’s. I’m like, “Okay.” It was a pretty good gig back in the day when we actually had like play CDs.

Dan Bennett: Don’t get to tell me twice I can use it. That’s for sure.

Joe Casabona: That’s awesome. Anyway, really smart renting. I feel like there is this emphasis on if you show up with something janky they’re gonna wonder if you’re a professional. I’ve been told, like with a camera, the body of the camera doesn’t matter as much as the lens. Is that true?

Dan Bennett: If I had to upgrade… Say you got like a lower-end DSLR with a kit lens that came with it in the box and I was going to upgrade something, I would upgrade the lens first for sure.

Joe Casabona: Nice.

Dan Bennett: The last upgrade I did, of course, I’m a video professional, so it was warranted. But the last upgrade I did include things like ridiculous autofocus and a screen that flips out so I can see myself and those sorts of things that are more tools than, you know, how good the camera is. But yeah, glasses definitely up there.

In my opinion, this comes from being on film sets and television sets and all that kind of stuff, audio is king. So if you can only upgrade one thing, make it your audio. But if you’re upgrading things as you go, lense is an incredible thing.

And the faster it is, which is the amount of light you can let in the creamier that look is and the shallower the depth of field to where, you know, the regular folk out there just like to call it the blurred background, you start to get some of those filmic looks that even now the iPhone is trying to mimic digitally because everyone understands that it’s desirable. So yeah, lenses are great upgrade.

Joe Casabona: You know, it’s funny, I always get asked what effect I have on my setup. They’re like, “How are you getting that blurred background. It’s so good.” And I’m like, “It’s like $300 lens.”

Dan Bennett: I love it. I love it.

Joe Casabona: Which again, I absolutely didn’t need but I wanted it. I got it in January 2020 and then I made a video about how to set it up in February 2020. And then everybody Googled how to do that in March 2020. So the affiliates on that video actually paid for the gear-

Dan Bennett: Nice.

Joe Casabona: Which I didn’t plan to do but it worked out.

Dan Bennett: That’s the thing. There’s the possibilities. And you have to keep those in mind even though you can’t always plan for them. Like when I upgraded to… I use a Sony a7S III for my main rig now and I had an a7S II before that and everything up until now I’ve always sold my previous camera and bought a new one. This time I’m like, “I’m gonna keep it around because I want to do some other stuff with it.” And it’s been a workhorse and just done so well for me for five years. I turned it into my rough-and-tumble camera, but it’s also my webcam that I’m using right now as we’re talking to each other on screen.

Joe Casabona: Nice.

Dan Bennett: And one of the bonus side effects of that is jumping on a regular old Zoom call and having someone go, “Holy crap, why does this look so good.” And it’s like, “Well, I’m running a DSLR into my computer as my webcam instead of using a webcam. And it makes a difference.” So you never know the impact it’s going to have when you grab at least decent gear.

Also too I’m someone who’s not afraid to buy used stuff. I don’t recommend it for everyone because it takes a little bit of guts to do. But there’s even some great companies that rent gear and then will sell it used later and still give you a little warranty and stuff like that. So I tell people don’t forget that there’s used stuff out there too that can make you look really good.

[00:10:58] <music>

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[00:11:57] <music>

Joe Casabona: I do the same thing with Apple products. I’ll always look in the refurb store first, especially because if Apple is selling it, you still get that Apple Care. You still get it.

Dan Bennett: 100%

Joe Casabona: So it’s a smart move I think depending on the retailer.

Dan Bennett: Yeah. We’re giving away all our secrets, man.

Joe Casabona: I know. I know. Stop listening. We’ll edit this part out. Now, you mentioned that audio is king. I’ve heard similar studies or I’ve heard similar things. If your audio quality is below a certain level, your credibility takes a hit. And there are studies that kind of show that. So I think I agree with you.

Again, with the mic, I assume with your cameras and your video gear you’re not using the built-in? Is there any good built-in camera microphone?

Dan Bennett: No. No. It’s so funny I have a couple of videos including the one I’m editing today before and after this chat we’re having, where I say, “I don’t care what might you use, please just don’t use the onboard mic that’s built into either your phone or camera. Because those engineers were paid to do one thing, and that’s create an incredible image. They were not paid to make the internal microphone great.

It’s not a no-go, but I even try and stay away from using onboard shotgun mics to plug into your camera so the track is still on that clip that you pull up an SD card. I always beg people, I know it’s extra work, but please capture your audio separately because I believe in it that much.

And you’re totally right. It’s at a certain level. I can’t tell you where that level is that but you know it when you hear it. And you do lose some credibility. And the unfortunate part about it is that it’s oftentimes subconscious. People are used to incredible content. They go to YouTube, they see incredible content. They’re streaming Hulu and Netflix and Disney and it’s incredible content. They’re seeing independent pieces of film and video and they’re fantastic.

So people are unconsciously used to great-sounding content. And when yours isn’t, even if they’re not like, “This sounds terrible. I’m clicking away,” it still kind of is what’s happening sometime.

It was all kind of born from being on my first feature-length film set. And what I noticed real quick I was on the camera team and it was very… it was done in a fun way but they were all still very serious. All the different departments were arguing over who’s the most important. If the lighting is crap, it doesn’t matter how good your camera is. But if this camera was crap, you could light it perfectly and it doesn’t matter. Well, the audio if you didn’t have that, you got no movie. Oh, yeah, well… And it just went on and on and on.

And at the end of that two months, I ended up concluding myself that the audio department was the most important, even though that’s not the department I was in just because of how much I learned on set and how critical it is to, especially in the future and film this longer have consistent audio all the way through so it’s not distracting and you can kind of get lulled into that story. So yeah, I’m an advocate for audio for sure.

Joe Casabona: Yeah, I love it. There could be a lot of details in audio. I watched the little Lucasfilm documentary that came out on May 4th about the soundstage at Lucasfilm. They’re like playing clips with no sound, they’re showing a fully stage or whatever. With bad mixing it feels different.

Dan Bennett: It’s such an incredible thing. My partner Jax, she’s a chef. I don’t know what that has to do with this but is a huge, huge fan of Shark Week. Like it has been her whole life. And we’re sitting around—this was two years ago now—we’re sitting around watching Shark Week episode and they always focus on those sharks at the Seal Island, the breach that come way out of the water. And it’s incredible, these great whites catching air and stuff.

And they found this other location in a different place in the world where bull sharks were breaching in shallow water after salmon that were coming out of the river into the saltwater a little bit. So the sharks had to come into shallow. But they were still getting air out of the water and it was kind of incredible.

So we were watching this thing, you know, and I started giggling about 10 minutes into it. She’s like, “What are you laughing at? We’re watching bull sharks attack salmon. Why are you laughing?” And I’m like, “You don’t want to know.” And she’s like, “No, tell me.” I’m like, “All right.”

And essentially what was happening is you would see the sharks that were super far away from the boat and they got these great long lenses, so you feel like you’re close, but you can still tell it’s pretty far away. And then you see the sharks that are really close to the boat and it’s a wider angle lens, and you know that they’re very close to the boat. And then of course some in the middle.

And I was finding that they were using like the same seven or eight splash sounds every time one of these sharks slide back in the water. And not only were they repeating, so I was starting to recognize them, they were also using really close-up splash sounds for the really faraway sharks. And I’m like, “This is killing the whole thing.” So I told her, and then five minutes later, she’s like, “I hate you. I can’t even watch the rest of this now.”

Joe Casabona: You ruined it.

Dan Bennett: And it’s how much of a difference it can make.

Joe Casabona: And honestly I suspect probably… I mean, maybe it’s just because we’re kind of in adjacent fields, right?

Dan Bennett: Yeah.

Joe Casabona: But I feel like even if someone doesn’t articulate that they’re real, like they realize it’s happening, somewhere in their brain they’re like, “Something’s weird here.” Like uncanny valley kind of thing. Like, something doesn’t feel right.

Dan Bennett: A lot of times it’s like when people describe music and they’re like, “I don’t know, it’s just not for me.” They’re not saying it’s bad or the artist sucks, there’s just something there. I see it happen with content all the time, you know, where people… we can actually show—I won’t get too nerdy here—but we can actually show some of my clients their retention lasting longer after we’ve dropped shipped in a mic and taught them how to use it. And they’re making their videos with better audio and people are sticking around.

And I’m like, “You’re not better because you were presenting well last week too. But now I feel like I’m in the room with you and I can trust you more.” And that’s just how audio goes. So it’s kind of crazy. Yeah.

Joe Casabona: Yeah, awesome. The last thing I’ll say on that is Eminem has a new song out for the Elvis movie. I can’t remember if it’s called The King and I or something like that. But CeeLo Green does the hook on it. And his vocals are so weak it’s like the first thing I noticed. And I’m just like, “I don’t know if I could listen to this song now.” His vocals are so weak it almost sounds like he’s like behind a different pane of glass.

Dan Bennett: Right.

Joe Casabona: And just it hurts.

Dan Bennett: I have to listen. Because that’s subconscious stuff. Even when you’re familiar with what’s going on, the waveforms and the video clips and what’s actually in edit, there’s still times where you’re like, “I don’t know, man.”

Joe Casabona: Yeah, right. Something… Again, I play the drums and I listen to a lot of music and I have the expensive headphones and some people can tell and some people can’t. But there’s some times where I think something will be low in the mix and that bothers me. It just doesn’t sound right.

Dan Bennett: You had one job, Mr. Engineer

Joe Casabona: Yeah, right. So it’s wild. Now, again, we were talking all about audio is king and good this and good that but my first microphone… Well, my first microphone was some Samsun… just $20 microphone thing. My first camera was a Logitech C 720, the first one I started using for like my own videos. Now I have the Shure SM7B and the a6400. But I built up to that. And like you said, I would sell my old stuff and use that money towards new stuff. Almost like buying a house, right?

So audio is important. Let’s start there. Audio is important. You don’t need a $400 microphone though. What would you say you could get away with?

Dan Bennett: So money-wise, I would say &35, $40 is where we’re starting. So go cash in that giant garbage bag full of pop bottles that’s in the garage and ignoring or whatever. Not to say $40 is zero, but it’s doable if you really want to sound good.

The caveat to this most of the time is proximity. So I have a lot of people who are clients of mine, want to look and sound great on video, are working on the stuff that got a budget, so we’re on the lower end of audio but you can still capture great audio. That means the mics gotta be close to your mouth. So here we are. And if you don’t mind something being a little bit in your shot, we got a lot to work with.

So I actually had some videos on my channel where I was sponsored by microphone companies to talk about their cheaper mics. FIFINE is one of them. There’s some really cool, small microphones that are USB driven. So you just plug them in your computer and go. They just have to be six, eight inches away from your mouth. And so the real hard work is just finding a box nearby that you can set it on top of while you do your calls, you know.

So I think right around 35, 40 bucks, you can get really, really good audio quality. And all those videos on my channel I do a before and after with the mic without any editing done to the audio at all to show viewers what’s possible. And every time they’re like, “Holy crap, that’s coming from a $40 microphone?” I’m like, “Yeah.”

Now again, it’s set up right and it’s close to my mouth, and those things matter. But I think you can get in the game for about 40 bucks. And then you’ll find that you’re blown away like three-quarters of the other videos out there just because they don’t have that knowledge.

Joe Casabona: Because they’re using their iPhone mic or whatever. I agree wholeheartedly. You know, I do LinkedIn Learning courses and they don’t send me anything, but they do send a kit if people need it. And it’s a cheap headset. And then they just tell you to do the forefinger test. So four fingers and then you line up the mic at your pinky and then you just fix the mic there. And that’s good mic technique. It has a windscreen on it right, so that the plosives are not like whatever. And that gets you most of the way there, right? I tell people environment is more important than the microphone, right?

Dan Bennett: Yeah.

Joe Casabona: If you’re recording in a bathroom stall, it doesn’t matter how good your microphone is.

Dan Bennett: So true. I’m glad you brought that up because it does matter. And that’s where, you know, upfront with a lot of people that are maybe thinking about working with me, I’m like, “Hey, just so you know, I’m not trying to turn you into a videographer. I’m really just trying to give you a tool as an entrepreneur to do a better job.”

And then if we do work together and we get a little further along, I’m like, “Do you remember what I said in the beginning? I’m going to kind of take some of that back and I’m going to teach you some very simple filmmaking things that will make things easier on you.

And one of those is your environment. Not only treating it or where things are or maybe even moving furniture into the room to kill some of the reverb. You don’t have to memorize all these things. But we’ll probably work together wants to get your room as tight as possible. And a lot of it does come to just paying attention and knowing what’s going on, you know.”

So before I moved to Texas, I was in a very small room, carpet, lots of furniture, a really dead sound, especially for a room that was not treated. And I had just a Blue Yeti and it did really well for me. Condenser microphone picks up a lot of the nuance in your voice and… And it did really well.

And then when I moved, now I have nine-foot ceilings and all this space and I really had to take that into consideration. So even though the Yeti is a good microphone, it does what it does, I switched to a Samsung Q9U, which essentially is the same price and you can get them both at BestBuy or Amazon or whatever. So it’s kind of cool. They’re both coming in around 150 bucks now.

But this is dynamic, and it’s a lot more directional. So you’re not hearing like the fridge running or the sound bouncing so much off the walls like the other microphone. And that’s just mean knowing my environment. Both mics cost 150 bucks, which one you use has a huge effect on what you sound like when you’re done.

[00:24:21] <music>

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[00:25:18] <music>

Joe Casabona: People in the podcast space will dump on the Blue Yeti. They’ll be like, “Blue Yeti sucks. That’s bad.” And I’m like, “It’s not bad.” Most people don’t know that there are two knobs on the back of it.

So the first thing I do when I see one of my guests has a Blue Yeti and they sound like echoy or whatever, I’m like, “Look at the two knobs on the back. Is it the knob turn to the heart rate, the heart pattern and is the game turned down?” And they’re like, “I didn’t even know these were here.” And I’m like, “Most people don’t.” Because there’s no manual, there’s no whatever, and people just like plugging in and start using it and it’s like a lot of white noise or whatever.

Dan Bennett: Dude, oh, my God, I’m smiling so big because I’m so with you. One of the biggest videos on my channel is the best mic for Zoom. And it’s a Blue Yeti. There’s a whole section in there that talks about the cardioid pattern and how to use this thing, you know, because I know so many people either don’t get that information or just kind of skip over it. And it matters, right?

And then again, pulling from my previous musician background, my arm that holds my mic on my desk, like a lot of people have, actually has stage equipment pieced into it. You can’t tell by looking at it. But it’s got like an extension arm and a slider that you would use on a vocal mic on a stage or something like that nice.

Joe Casabona: Nice.

Dan Bennett: So I actually run, when I had a Blue Yeti or now even with this microphone, I run completely horizontally across my desk in front of me. So instead of it needing to stick straight up and be half in my face, it’s sideways doing the exact same job. And then I’m just moving my arm up and down. And that’s again, my environment because I’m up against the wall where my desk is. So I can’t put anything on the other side of my desk pointing at me. And I know my environment, so I got to bring it from the side, swing it over. And that’s how I get my best sound.

So it’s important to study a little bit, work with a pro or do some digging and really pay attention to your environment. Because there’s a lot of times where I help people with what they already have and they’re not buying anything, and an hour later, they’re like, “I can’t believe I look and sound like this with the stuff I already had.” And it’s like, “I know, right?” That’s the fun of it.

Joe Casabona: Yeah, yeah, absolutely. My mic is on the Rode boom arm PSA1. But it’s like off to the side because you don’t want to be talking directly at the wall. I’ve got some cheapy panels, like hexagonal panels that do a little absorption. But, you know, I want to talk away from the wall so that it doesn’t echo. And I think that’s another thing that a lot of people don’t realize, is sound is going to bounce off whatever you’re talking about and back into your microphone.

Dan Bennett: Man, I like that we’re getting at least a little nerdy here because these things do matter if you’re trying to sound good even if you’re not a professional audio engineer or videographer. One of the things I would share with people all the time that they were really surprised by is that a lot of the reverb you hear in a mic when you are, even in the middle of a room but especially up against the wall, is the sound leaves your mouth bounces off the wall in front of you, goes to the wall behind you, bounces again and then comes back. And that’s where that delay comes from.

So if there’s anything you can do behind you that doesn’t mess up your background but can kill some of that sound, you’ll notice a difference instantly. And I’ve had so many people just move a bookshelf or bring a larger plant in or something and they’re like, Oh my gosh, I can’t believe how much better it is.” And it’s like, yeah.

I have a hard floor here in this house. So I got a huge area rug. And everything I can do naturally to try and knock the sound down a little bit in this big space, I try and do.

Joe Casabona: For sure. Bookshelf is like… I remember when I learned that I’m like, That’s amazing. Because it’s not just the distance or whatever. It just can’t be like a flat, hard surface, right? Because the sound is gonna bounce off that. But bookshelf, the sound bounces around the books and the shelves and it’s deflected. It’s really interesting.

I’ll link to a video I made about deflection and diffusion in the show notes, which you’ll be able to find over at howibuilt.it/290.

Now you’re a video guy. I think one of the other things that people underestimate the importance of, especially if they’re using a webcam, is lighting. Can you talk a little bit about that? Because that’s not something I really realized until I got good lighting.

Dan Bennett: Yeah, for sure. The warning with lighting is that, out of all the components of filmmaking, I think it’s the most vast universe. It’s the simplest concept we need to build to see you, to focus on you but it’s so vast. I think it’s even more vast than editing and the final composition of a piece of film or video or whatever.

My go-to is, these are all just my opinions, but my go-to is the top two things in lighting. One is white light. Now, there’s different reasons for different color lights all the time. But something a lot of people don’t know until I tell them is that the sun’s actually white, it’s not yellow, and right around that 5400 or 5500 Kelvin is white light, and that’s what the sun’s actually putting off.

And if you go outside an overcast day or when the sun’s a little lower and the atmosphere is diffusing it a little, it’s not just beating straight down on you, it’s some of the most gorgeous lighting a face could ever have. So indoors, I’m always trying to mimic that. So I’m always using cooler temperatures.

My guess in this case would be higher temperatures, but somewhere in that 5000 to 6000 Kelvin range. You can even go to Home Depot and buy bulbs and look at the Kelvin rating on them. But I’m always trying to get near what the sun actually is for the most natural look.

And then the second component is just soft, soft, soft, soft, soft. And there’s a thousand ways that you can make light soft. I did a video on ring lights because all these people got ring lights in the closet and they never used them because they were hot for a minute or whatever. And I show how to put it on just a cheap little stand and put parchment paper over it and how it softens and you can use a ring light, you know, that you already have laying around.

And so many people DM me like, “Oh, you’ve given my ring light new life because it was just on a shelf or whatever.” Like shower curtains that are white, sheets, there’s so many ways that you can soften or diffuse light.

And nowadays, all the lighting companies get that a lot of us are creating at home and we want to look and feel professional as we do. So a lot of the LED panels, like I use all the time, have soft boxes you can buy separate and put over top of them that soften up that light. And then I use a Godox panel right above me for these calls. And naturally without anything on it, it’s super soft white light. So those are my top two things is white and soft.

Beyond that you can do so many fun things with lighting. Rules are made to be broken. There is no go-to rule for that. But LED panels are cheap. They don’t get hot, so you can touch them and move them around. And it’s always my go-to.

And I’ve been on really big film sets where I still just take my $200 newer LED panels set to do my interviews and stuff because it worked great and I don’t need to go buy a big expensive when they do their jobs. So I’m a huge fan of people at least learning the basics of lighting because very powerfully just understanding those couple things.

And then I guess the last one, you see this a lot of videos and stuff about, you know, making YouTube videos or videos in general, is that natural light is great. So if you got a window that comes in, that’s great. The warning there is always that the sun doesn’t care that you’re filming. So you might get halfway through a video and everything changes and we’ll notice.

But other than that, just understanding that if the lights directly behind you, you might look like a silhouette, and if it’s directly in front of you, you might be too brightly lit. So if you’re kind of off at an angle and it’s falling softly on your face, it’s just a really great light. And it’s oftentimes on our film set what professionals are trying to accomplish. They’re trying to just do what the sun naturally does.

Joe Casabona: Absolutely. I’ve got three-point lighting. I think my back light is probably not optimal. But, you know, I’ve got the two… I’ve got key lights because I spend money obnoxiously and I could automate it and whatever. But like you said, I used to have two… I think I got just two newer lights, like LED lights on stands for like 50 bucks. But I’ve got the – what’s it called? The… what are the first two? There’s the… I’m gonna need your help here. Three-point lighting. There’s the-

Dan Bennett: Oh, key and fill.

Joe Casabona: I just said key. Right. That’s why they’re called key lights probably. So you got the key light and the fill light and it’s supposed to create kind of even lighting on your face.

One thing I worry about, I never worried about it until Jimmy Carr started doing The Big Tiny Quiz from lockdown. I don’t know if you ever watched that. So for British folks or people who consume British TV on YouTube, one of my favorite things to watch is The Big Fat Quiz Of The Year. At the end of the year, Jimmy Carr hosts it and it’s like British celebrities usually taking a quiz about events that happen throughout the year.

And during lockdown he did the tiny quiz at locking down or something like that. But for like the first week he didn’t have any makeup on and his face was just so shiny. And I’m like, “I gotta stop that.” I don’t wear pancake makeup or whatever but like I was told to just like taking a paper towel and like just like dabbing it a little bit like kind of helps with that shine.

Dan Bennett: Yeah. Yeah. I love that you brought this up. Last week’s video on my channel, there’s a segment in it where I apply makeup. Being someone who’s bald, I’m always having to worry about my overhead light, which I always shut off when I film. But you can’t always, you know, control all light bouncing everywhere. And then I have really dark eyes, like the skin around my eyes is dark. So makeup for me is about eliminating the shine exactly what you’re talking about. I have relatively oily skin.

And then also just evening out my color. It’s not even about vanity per se, it’s about like I just don’t want the distraction for you of the glowing or on top of my head from the light overhead or the dark eyes that are like, Wow, that’s really distracting.

And it’s as simple only 30 second thing. I’m not in front of the mirror for an hour or anything. And it makes me feel good too. So yeah, dabbing it. I got this great… I was on a shoot one time, and the hair and makeup girl I was like, “Hey, this isn’t your job. I’m the camera guy on the scene. But being a bald guy and having a little bit oily skin, you know, how do you get rid of that shine?” She’s like, “Oh, take the rest of this. I gotta buy a new one anyway.”

And it’s just this like… it’s not a liquid, it’s not a salad, it’s kind of in between. And you just rub it in and then it disappears, it starts white and it disappears, and it makes your skin matt instead of shiny. And it’s for that exact thing. Naturally, oily skin is a little bit shiny on the camera. And I think those things are worth doing. And not everyone needs it but I think things are worth doing.

The kind of example I gave that video was like, I’m not saying wear a three-piece suit, or like put a full face of makeup on or anything like that. But if you were going to dinner with a friend you hadn’t seen in a long time, you might throw on halfway decent clothes and comb your hair or whatever. Just give me that version. Give me that you care about being on camera but don’t go overboard.

So I love that you brought that up, because that’s important too. I don’t want anyone to worry about it. You know, I’ve got some episodes out there where straight beard hairs are swinging in the wind the whole time and I’m like, “I’m not reshooting this. I’m gonna leave it in.”

Joe Casabona: Right, right. It’s not about getting it perfect every time. But it’s about these little things that you can do to improve the quality of your video without spending a ton on gear. So like you have a $40 mic and you do a couple of things to deaden the sound and you don’t need a $400 mic. You get a couple of cheap lights and now you’re not filming like you’re in a cave and your webcam isn’t working as hard, and you’re getting a crisper picture, right?

Dan Bennett: 100%.

Joe Casabona: Again, I did some on camera work for LinkedIn for a course that’s coming out—it could be out by the time this episode comes out—but I also was in drama club and so we had to wear makeup every night. Like we had to do the full… I call it pancake makeup. I think it’s actually called foundation and eyeliner and lipstick so that people in the back could see our facial features.

So get a little bit of foundation. Or again, I just used a paper towel kind of in between takes to get some of that oil like that. Because I’m Italian, I’ve got greasy skin.

Dan Bennett: Love it.

Joe Casabona: So little things like that can really go a long way.

Dan Bennett: They can. I love that we’re talking about this. I keep referencing my own work, which is obnoxious-

Joe Casabona: You should. We’ll link will link to your YouTube channel in the show notes too.

Dan Bennett: Cool. The only reason I am is because I hit on these topics and I just love helping people who are like, “What the heck do I do?” So on the one that I’m editing today, that’ll be out tomorrow, which is now in the past when this one is released, I talk about like use what you got. And a lot of times that’s a smartphone. And that’s great. We can still get a good image with that. And I’ll show you how blah, blah, blah.

But if you’re gonna buy a camera, you know, I have a couple lower-end recommendations: Sony, EB10 and Canon M50. And it’s not because I’m brand loyal or these are the most incredible vlogging cameras ever. They’re both for the exact same three reasons.

One, they have flip out screen so you can see yourself because it’s already hard enough to film yourself with no help. Two, they have great autofocus. So as you move around, it’s going to keep a lock on your face because that’s what we want to see anyway. And then third, they can both be used as webcams. So you can like elevate that webcam look for meetings and presentations and stuff like that.

So I’m always thinking in these terms of like only spend what you need. I kind of think about it like going to the bar. I want a good drink, I don’t need the top shelf, but don’t use the well stuff either. So like I want to get people in the middle where it’s like, yeah, you gotta have a little bit of a budget and that’s true. But, man, no one’s gonna know you only spent a total of 1000 bucks to get here as opposed to 10,000 because it’s incredible.

Joe Casabona: We’re looking but we’re looking for the Jack Daniels Black Label of here, right? Don’t go to the bankers club. You don’t want that.

Dan Bennett: I love it.

Joe Casabona: That’s awesome. I have a flip up screen on my camera but I have a shotgun mic that is completely obstructing that view. And they like really kills me. I’ve been using it less just because like, again, this environment and the distance of the camera with the shot… Like the shotgun mic needs to be just off frame for it to work effectively. And my desk already looks like Dr. Octopus. I’m like not going to add another arm.

So I might just take that out of commission for a little bit and just deal with the fact that the Shure is going to be… I can like lower it a little bit for the camera, but the Shure is going to be in the shot and I’m going to be okay with that.

Dan Bennett: Yeah. Yeah. And like live you’re talking about your environment and morphing in and out of what’s available, which is awesome. About Dr. Octopus, I love it.

My thing right now is that when I shoot my YouTube videos, I’m actually facing the other direction I am right now. And then my monitors that are in front of me that you can’t see become my background. So there’s two different cameras going on. Because once for these calls and ones for that.

But I do love when people have a setup like yours, where it can be both where you sit down to possibly record a podcast, but also turn the camera on and still have your podcasting mic in the shot, like I also have right now. I just can’t do it because I’m up against the wall and my background is this vanilla paint. But I love when people have setups like that. Because that means you can sit down, look really good, sound really good on a call or a sales call or a discovery call but also make a video that’s high quality too. And I think that’s super cool.

Joe Casabona: Yeah, absolutely. I got like the Elgato’s arm mounting thing. So like I can actually swing the camera out. I do have a green screen. I think nobody needs… You don’t need one.

Dan Bennett: I’m so glad you said. I think once a week I get asked, “Should I get a green screen?” I’m like “No.”

Joe Casabona: No. No, you shouldn’t. I bought it because I needed it for a five figure gig I got to make a handful of videos where they wanted me on screen and they wanted their own background. So like that project paid for the green screen. So you definitely don’t. But I have one, so I’ll swing the camera out.

And I also kind of use that when I’m like in the booth as kind of like [inaudible 00:42:19] the sound a little bit. It’s not like super effective, but it works.

Dan Bennett: I like that.

Joe Casabona: Wow, we’ve been talking for 40 minutes about this. It’s super fun. But I think the takeaway, and I’ll put this in the beginning of the lesson for these things, is that you don’t need expensive gear. And we’ve talked about a few things, a few small things that you can do to look and sound better without breaking the bank.

As this episode is out, either you can already do it or it’s coming soon. With the latest version of Mac OS and iOS, you can use your iPhone as a webcam like natively. And so if you have an iPhone 12, 13, or I guess, 14, by the time this video comes out, you have an amazing 4k camera that you can now use as a webcam. And there’s like this crazy tech with their wide angle so that you can get an overhead shot of your desk too. Have you seen this?

Dan Bennett: Yeah. That’s crazy.

Joe Casabona: It’s absolutely bananas. I cannot wait to try it. So use what you got and make these incremental improvements.

Dan Bennett: Yeah, 100%. There’s always a way if you want there to be one.

Joe Casabona: Yeah, absolutely. Now, I had reserved part of this conversation for YouTube and podcasting. We’ll just cover that quickly I think. Because I think a lot of people are asking this especially because as we record this YouTube just rolled out their podcasting… area. I’m not gonna call it a platform. It’s not an app. It’s just like a page on the “explore” tab.

So you have a podcast, right?

Dan Bennett: Correct.

Joe Casabona: Do you record the video for your podcast?

Dan Bennett: I do. I use riverside.fm which we’re using now.

Joe Casabona: Full disclosure: they previously sponsored this podcast.

Dan Bennett: Hey, Riverside, if you’re listening, you can sponsor me next. I film because I can. And then when I edit I actually edit in Premiere Pro, even though it’s a podcast. So I’m making the same edit to the video I am the audio anyway. And then I’m like, Well, now I just render audio and video separate. And I really don’t have that much extra work because I used Riverside capture and I use Premiere to cut it.

And then mine go to just an unlisted playlist on my YouTube channel that I link people to. So I don’t even really use them for discoverability or anything at this point. But that’s why this conversation intrigues me because I’m like, “Man, maybe there’s some shifting in my future because we’re already filming the show anyway.”

Joe Casabona: Yeah, absolutely. I’ll add here that the recommendation on your channel have a playlist with the exact name of your podcast. Now, people who are listening to this now hopefully you’ve already consumed this same content through my other podcast or through my YouTube channel, because I put it in both places. But if you haven’t done this yet, playlist with the exact name of your podcast and every episode in the order… YouTube says in the order in which you want them consumed. So if it’s like a Serial podcast, then you probably want them in reverse or in chronological order from the date they came out. If it’s Episodic, reverse chronological order, starting with the day they came out.

And they make it very clear that it should be all of the episodes of your show. Don’t break it into seasons, don’t include clips. Google knows. If you have a podcast they just know. You don’t have to submit it anywhere. They just know. I suspect they’re doing some check against like names for their podcast engine or whatever. And then for the description of the playlist, I made mine the description of the podcast itself.

Dan, I think where you have a leg up is you’re recording these videos anyway. So a lot of people are, myself included especially because I was podcasting in like 2016, recording quality video even just a few years ago, it was like a complete nightmare. Like getting the good audio was a nightmare. Getting good video was impossible.

Dan Bennett: For sure.

Joe Casabona: But a lot of people are probably like, “Crap, what do I do?” You mentioned that you edit in Premiere? Adobe products scare me. Always have. You did say Premiere, right? Or did you say something else?

Dan Bennett: Yeah.

Joe Casabona: Okay. I use ScreenFlow because I do mostly screencasts and I’m most comfortable with that even though it chokes on 4k video. It doesn’t really on my Mac Studio anymore, but like anything older than that it would like just bomb with 4k video. Do you have any tips for maybe quickly creating a video when you just have the audio assets, adding visual, stuff like that?

Dan Bennett: I don’t know if I’ve actually ever done that for myself or anyone else. If someone threw me an audio clip that was a couple minutes long and said, “Do something,” I would probably try and get really creative with B-roll.

There’s some stuff out there for free. There’s a couple of YouTube channels where you can get usable Stock footage. And then I believe Unsplash is known for photography, but they’ve got a video section. So you can get your hands on some stuff for free. I do video professionally so I have catalogs that I subscribe to and have thousands and thousands of Stock pieces of footage at my disposal. And I use it all the time. My videos for fun little storytelling things. So that’s probably where I would start.

I’m also proficient in Motion graphics. So I’d probably do some fun, just typography and just real simple things to drive home the points. Less is more a lot of times with animation and stuff like that. And then, you know, good old Ken Burns effect, like just some great stock photography that slowly moves, you know, zooms in and zooms out slowly and show something incredible that really drives home the point of the story or something. So that’s probably where I would go is just my old school filmmaking talents. I’d go dig them out of the closet and be like, “All right, how do we make this interesting?”

Joe Casabona: Nice. The interesting bit is important. I mean until YouTube releases their own podcasting app or it’s legit just audio. If you do want to please the YouTube algorithm, you probably do want a slightly engaging video.

Now I will say, I think I gave you the stats before we started recording, but as we record this, Edison Research did a super listeners study which is people who listen to podcasts for at least five hours a week, or five hours of podcasts a week. And 55% of them use YouTube for at least some of their podcast consumption. So YouTube at this point is already a becoming a formidable podcasting platform.

Dan Bennett: That’s so fun to think about. We were talking off recording that the quote unquote, watcher ship I guess as opposed to listenership to my podcast that’s filmed are people who do not listen to it. They watch on YouTube on purpose because it’s their preferred thing.

And as I finally tracked some of these humans down and met them in real life, a couple of them told me, “Oh, I don’t sit there and watch your face the whole time though, or your guests face. I put it on on my phone, on my laptop, whatever and then I do the dishes. So they’re still listening to just the audio but they prefer to do it through YouTube.

Maybe they pay for the monthly YouTube so they don’t have ads or they just like that app. But it’s interesting to know that that’s happening. And obviously, anytime you see a shift from one of the big dogs, you know that something a lot more than what we know is going on behind the scenes. So we should probably pay attention.

Joe Casabona: Yeah, for sure. We have a little bit of a leg up because there was like a slide deck leaked in March of 2022 where YouTube made it pretty clear that they’re working on audio-only ads. They already have the YouTube Music app. And if you do pay for premium, you could exit out of the app, at least on your iPhone, and still listen to the video. Like that’s a feature. So it makes perfect sense that YouTube would want to take advantage of that.

Dan Bennett: Yeah, sure. I’ll throw out too if someone’s made it this far into our nerdom, it is… So Riverside does have a cost. It’s not oh, my God, but it’s there. Editing is something that’s difficult, audio or video, right?

So if you’re like, All right, I’ll throw whatever it is, I don’t remember, I’m sorry, but 12 or 15 bucks or something to Riverside so we can record in there when I have my guests on and then I’ll get something like cap cut for desktop for free or maybe iMovie or something for Apple or whatever, and then edit my show in a video editor instead of an audio editor, you now have this like other thing. And if YouTube’s paying attention to it and they’re going that direction anyway. It might be worth a little bit of money, and a little bit of a different view on your editing to end up with two versions of your show. I think that’s super powerful. Luckily, this is something I already do. So now I’m curious as to like how I can put it in the right spots and leverage it.

[00:51:59] <music>

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[00:53:05] <music>

Joe Casabona: I have an audio editor and he edits my podcast, but just the audio. So now I have a bunch of recorded interviews in Riverside with these video assets. And I’m wondering, should I try to sync the video up with the audio? That feels like a lot of work. I don’t know if it’s going to be worth it.

Right now I’m just releasing a static image and the audio over it. So the podcast is at least on YouTube. But you know, probably use it for clips I think is the best thing for me. For my solo shows, I will definitely record me talking at the camera because usually I script those or I’m very good at just talking through an outline. And so it doesn’t require a lot of editing. But there are some interesting things to think about as a creator moving forward with this stuff.

Dan Bennett: It can open up a lot of doors too. I used to do really high level interior exit interviewing that sounds way fancier than it is. So I brought that over into my like teaching, you know, for my members and clients and stuff like that, and my own YouTube videos for free and stuff like trying to show people how to do some of these things.

I was actually speaking with two people who are in the community we were talking about earlier that were both in. One had done work for the other and built a website. And then the one that had the website built was like wanting to make a video testimonial, had this great experience. These guys are incredible people anyway.

And we were on a call and he’s like, “Man, you know, I got the camera, the setup. I use it all the time for my Zoom calls and my presentations and I’m just having a hard time doing this.” I’m like, “I got an idea man here. Here’s my calendar, book a half hour slot, we’re just going to have a conversation. Just trust me.” He’s like, “All right, yeah.”

So I set it up in Riverside, had him in and was like, “Hey, so you worked with this guy and it was cool, man. What made it cool? I know pricing matters and all that kind of stuff. But what’s it that made you feel comfortable or you knew you’re heading in the right direction? Like what made it cool?

And then we just had a 15-minute conversation and then I chopped it all up and gave it to those guys. And they both were like, “Oh my god, this is one of the most incredible video, testimonials ever.” Because it was conversational and natural. It wasn’t, “I loved him because he was fast at…”

And it worked so well. And I use the same exact process I do on my podcast to make that. So like it opens up these doors where other cool things can happen too just because you used to filming and cutting up your own video and audio. So if you’re up for the challenge, I say, start learning those things because they’re helpful.

Joe Casabona: That gives me an idea where another person, Ame… as this comes out with everything I’m talking about will be done probably. But Ame-

Dan Bennett: If only life went this way.

Joe Casabona: I know, right? This is great, like real-life montages. Ame who’s also in the community is doing some copywriting for me and she’s also doing a case study of one of my clients who after one call with me got her first sponsor for her podcast. Now I’m like, “I’m gonna send her my own Riverside link, where she can be the host, and I’ll just tell her to record. And then we’ll create some cool video asset from it. That’s amazing. What a great idea!

Dan Bennett: It’s so fun, man. And at the end of that call, because you’re warmed up, you and going you know, doing your thing, he was like, “So basically what I’ve been saying this whole time is if you want a great website done in Webflow and you want it done at a great price, and you want someone who’s actually going to like communicate well with you throughout the whole process and do it in a way where you’re like, ‘Well, that was easy, man, this is who you want to work with.'”

So I took that clip and put it at the very beginning. And that was the kickoff to the video.

Joe Casabona: Oh, that’s awesome.

Dan Bennett: And it’s just like these fun, little, beautiful moments that you can capture. And again, if someone hasn’t used Riverside, it records the audio and video separately on your side and mine. So you get just them on screen without your face in it like Zoom does. So it’s cool because you end up with something where I created this video and no one knows I was ever there. That’s the beauty of it.

Joe Casabona: So that’s like such an annoying thing about Zoom is like not only does it record sort of you are in the video together, but it also records based on your view. I did a bunch of interviews with Zoom and I never got a consistent view because if it was like three people, I did the grid view and if it was just me and another person, then it would like switch back. Terrible. This is not a knock on Zoom. This is not what Zoom is for. If you’re using Zoom to create stuff, that’s not what Zoom is for. That’s really…

Dan Bennett: That’s the safe way to put it, for sure. And you get the final result of what the internet is allowing to happen. So if internet was choppy on their side, and you get that robot voice, that’s what’s in your video. To where Riverside is doing its best job to not let that happen. So even if your connection with the person is a little bit pixelated, the pure video that you get at the end, generally isn’t. And give yourself every leg up you can, for sure.

Joe Casabona: Awesome. Well, I want to do a quick lightning round with you. You mentioned that you have Motion graphics experience. Do you do that for hire?

Dan Bennett: I do. Generally, it ends up being part of something that I’m already doing. But I’ve had a couple of inquiries recently for animating a logo which is one of my favorite things to do because it used to be my foot in the door for corporate jobs back in the day. Like, “Hey, I’d love to work with you. I don’t know if [inaudible 00:58:58] and I animated your logo because I noticed you didn’t have that asset.” And people would be are like, “Wait, wait, wait hold on. What?”

Joe Casabona: Smart.

Dan Bennett: So yeah, I still do it for hire. I just don’t really have marketing materials out saying “Hire me for Motion graphics.” But it’s often part of the project I do, yeah.

Joe Casabona: Nice. Those animated intros for YouTube videos, do you think they’re effective?

Dan Bennett: I think they’re effective for me. So this is just from my lens as a viewer. I think they’re effective for me once you’re kind of established as someone I want to be seeing on the regular because then it’s kind of like, you know, a Netflix show. Like I’m watching the show. I love this little intro or whatever or skip the intro because the buttons are there.

So I think they’re effective for creativity. But if you’re newer, smaller channel… Even myself I only have just over 2,000 subscribers on YouTube. There’s no intro. I can make a banger one that might impress some people, but it’s “Hey, in today’s video this is what we’re talking about. Let’s go.” And that’s it.

Joe Casabona: Like 30 seconds. Right? Roberto Blake just did a video about that.

Dan Bennett: So I think they’re effective to a point. It’s kind of like in entrepreneurship, especially on the digital side. There’s, you know, growing an audience, which is super important and then there’s like running ads and getting into that space. And I think those are both things that you should pour on the fire after the fire is already happening. Those aren’t things you should build a business from scratch on. You should be doing them all along possibly, but maybe not in the beginning.

So I think intros are kind of like that. It’s like, these are awesome to have, interludes are cool, transitions are cool. But if you’re just trying to get people to know who you are, and it’s kind of more upfront in your journey, it’s probably better to leave those on the back shelf till next year maybe. Something like that.

Joe Casabona: I really liked the way you put that. There are some things where like it’s good to pour onto the fire, not start the fire with those things.

Dan Bennett: Right.

Joe Casabona: Because, I mean, that’s the fun stuff. The first thing I always did when starting a “new business,” quote-unquote, was get business cards. The least important thing. The least important thing.

Dan Bennett: I’ve been there, man.

Joe Casabona: So that’s amazing. And then my last lightning round question is, where do you go to get your B roll, your video stock footage?

Dan Bennett: I rely pretty heavily on elements.envato.com. Envato in general—Hopefully, I’m saying that right. It’s the way I’ve been saying it for like 10 years—Envato in general has a lot of great things. They have individual platforms for stock photography, stock video, you know, design packs, and all kinds of stuff. But elements.envato.com is where you pay a monthly membership and you just have access to like a lot of their best stuff.

I love to have fun and drive story in my videos. So I’ll make stuff up based on what I can find on there sometimes. So I was doing a couple of videos back doing something on B roll and I found a bunch of these really cool animated clips of solo astronaut on Mars, slowly building this like colony himself or whatever. So I had like 12 clips of this like solo exploration of Mars. And I was like, so you know, when you’re using B roll, you could do some cool, like talk about how lonely it is on Mars when you’re the only person there and you got to do all the jobs and all that. And to keep yourself from going crazy, maybe you got to dance it out. And the last animation that was available in there was this astronaut doing a dance, you know.

So it made it look like I created this incredible thing but really what I did was go to the Stock video to see what was available, and then kind of build my script around it for fun. So that’s my go-to.

I also use Motionarray. But that’s a lot more for Motion graphics and animations, even though there’s some Stock video on there. And then, again, for free, Unsplash has a video section. I do hit that sometimes for very basic things like waves on a beach or a sunset or time lapse of the stars at night. You can find a lot of kind of base basic type stuff there for free. So those are my three go-tos.

Joe Casabona: Nice. That’s smart, your approach. When I do scripts, I usually write out what I want to put on the screen first. And then I’m like, Now I gotta find B roll that all matches.

Dan Bennett: 100%. The last thing I was touching right before we got on this call was me saying even though you should use what you have, I do recommend getting decent lights, decent mic, decent camera. And for the cameras and mics, I could go to the company websites and get those videos and just show little clips that they created because they’re made for that.

But for the lights, there was no clips. So it’s just like my cell phone on a tripod shown me pushing buttons and turn a knob for dimming the lights and stuff because it’s like, I need something for here. So I feel you. I used to do that too. And now it’s like I cheat as much as possible.

Joe Casabona: That’s way smarter. That’s amazing. Dan, this has been great. In Build Something More, for the members, we’re going to talk about how when you used to be in a touring band. So really excited. I’m a drummer. I don’t want to be in a band because I’m terrible. But really excited to talk about that. If you want to hear that conversation ad-free, you can become a member at howibuilt.it/290.

Dan, if people want to learn more about you, where can they find you?

Dan Bennett: I’ve tried to keep it simple. So if you go to Danhaslinks.com-

Joe Casabona: Love it.

Dan Bennett: …all my stuff’s there. I’m known as The Antiprenuer online, because there’s a Dan Bennett who was famous back in the 80s and still holds down the first three pages of Google when you look for my name. So the Antipreneur is my moniker and personal brand, whatever on all the different platforms. So if you Google that you’ll find me somewhere. And Danhaslinks is links to all my best stuff.

Joe Casabona: Love it. Danhaslinks. I was worried that we’d have to spell out Antipreneur. And I can’t. I cannot spell entrepreneur. It’s one of the words I cannot spell on the first try.

Dan Bennett: I feel you.

Joe Casabona: So that’s awesome. Danhaslinks.com. I’ll link, again, all of that in the show notes over at howibuilt.it/290. Dan, thanks so much for spending some time with us today. I really appreciate it.

Dan Bennett: Yeah, thank you. This was fun. I don’t get to nerd out often, so I had a good time. Awesome.

Joe Casabona: And thank you for listening. Thanks to Nexcess, TextExpander, and LearnDash for sponsoring. I really appreciate them and you and everybody. I love this podcast. And until next time, get out there and build something.

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