Dental Health Day with CloseUp

I had a blast when I was contracted to document for Unilever the activities during the Dental Health Day in Eldoret. The long march, the happy children, and the dental clinic experience were all great experiences. The Dental Association of Kenya chairman, former chairman, and treasury were also present. This would be the second time I would be visiting Eldoret and the experience was just as interesting as the first one.

Here are some pictures from the event.







By David Gitonga

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How to Make Great YouTube Videos


If you are creating YouTube videos, chances are that you are either selling a product or trying to position yourself as an expert or thought leader.

Here is how to structure your videos so that they get the most engagement and give you a return on your investment.

The Structure:

  1. Open with a Strong Hook

YouTube visitors are very trigger and you need to get them right at the beginning of the video. Usually, you got only about 15 seconds to do that otherwise they will just click away.

Here is an example of a good hook:

“So, today guys, we are going talk to you about how to grow your YouTube community. We got 5 tips coming right up after this.”

Within that 15-second window, you should pitch the value that the viewers are going to get. The quicker you can say what value your viewers are going to get out this, the longer they are going to stick around.

  1. Make A Really Short Intro

Avoid a really long intro, and a long intro is like 10-seconds. 3 seconds is just the optimum time you need to spend on an intro. It is also just about the time it takes for someone to move their hand to the mouse and click away.

You will notice that if your intro drags on for 5 seconds, your audience retention drops. Anything longer is just not recommended.

  1. Introduce Yourself

Remember that not everyone has been watching your previous videos, and potentially any new video you make could be the first encounter with a new viewer or subscriber. At the same time you don’t want to bore your existing viewers, so make it short and snappy.

Use a lower third to visually introduce some aspects about you rather than spend a lot of time doing so verbally. You could say list down your name, your Twitter handle, Facebook page etc.

  1. Get into the Content

Take as much time as you need to deliver the value that you want d to deliver and not a second more. If you got a 5-minute idea, don’t use 2 minutes and don’t use 6 minutes.

Its not about trying to optimize your content for robots, but about optimizing the content for people, and this will always work in your favor.

  1. Final Steps

Give your call to action, never more than two, and make them clear. Also, give a complement to your subscribers on screen and request for subscribes.

Here is a typical call to action:

“The best part of this happens in the comments section below, so be sure to leave a comment. Also, be sure to subscribe to our channel to get updates when we publish a new video every week.”

How to Develop a Community

Let’s make one thing clear. YouTube is very different from TV. YouTube is a social network and building the strongest communities, whether on YouTube or elsewhere, is based on common beliefs, and not on common interests.

If you want to build a community online, then you need to bring out what you belief and stand for. Common interests don’t develop into deep connections, but beliefs do.

When you share stories about why you do what you do, and why it matters, it touches all who watch and subscribe. It is only when you start caring that a community starts to develop.

If you don’t stand for something, you are not going to have advocates and in turn, your community will just be mediocre.

Video is more likely to appear higher on a search result page than a lot of other content online. It is also much easier to grow get a deeper, human connection with video than other types of content. You need it and most definitely, your business needs video.


David Gitonga




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VIDEO: Allen Cole Intro Video

Allen Cole, a digital marketing agency and consultant firm in Nairobi contracted E-LABZ to create a series of videos for them in an effort to promote and highlight their work for small and medium-sized businesses in Kenya. I were excited to be working with an online marketing agency, like us, and in showing what it takes to build a sustainable business online.

This was a great interview, but it required thorough preparation. The CEO was uncomfortable in front of the camera and no idea what she needed to say. It was necessary that I not only set up the equipment, alone, but also help her bring out what her company is all about.

The shoot was scheduled at 7:00 AM in the morning. However, it was not until 9:00 AM that I got the shot I wanted and got her comfortable and talking. Fortunately, I had a script I always use with my clientele to give them an idea of what to say without having a script written out.

Here is look at the video below.


David Gitonga




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How to Use Video to Sell


Many people ask us how they can use video to sell their products or services. Many do not have an idea of how they can use this rich medium to grow their business, increase their influence, or get the word out about what they do.

Below are 3 ways you can use video to drive engagement and increase sales:

  1. Let the Customers Do the Talking

Did you that 78% of people will choose a business based on peer referral? Now, compare that with just 14% who will choose a business simply because they saw an ad. Your past happy clients have a huge impact in spreading the word about your business. It therefore makes a lot of sense to bring these testimonials to life, and what better way to do that than through video.

Traditionally, websites had written testimonials of people or businesses they’ve worked with. This worked well. Today, however, video is a much more powerful way to show your potential clients that you can and have exceeded the expectations of your clients.



Video testimonials allow people to see the emotion and authenticity of your past clients. What is more, a video will live on, via YouTube, or other medium. The more testimonials you can get, the more social influence you will be able to show.

Testimonial videos are a powerful way to build trust about your business and help you reach the millions of people already watching videos online.

  1. Do FAQs Differently

Your clients want to know how to use your products and services. They want to be guided on how to make the most out of them. One way to achieve this effectively is to create FAQ videos that provide answers featuring members of your team.

FAQ videos help humanize you and your business and personalize the sales process. They assure your prospect that you’ve heard their concerns and that you’re confident your product or service work.

  1. Don’t Just Email

Email is still a popular way of growing and influencing your leads. However, incorporating video into your emails changes the game altogether.

Video support in email is quickly becoming a hot topic around marketing circles. Did you know that HTML5 Video, the latest technology on the Web, is supported by 58% of email clients? This means that whatever device the client is using to access the web, they are going to watch the video just as you intended – as high quality HD content with all the annotations included.

Rather than send a basic written follow-up or introductory email, why not add a video presentation, a thank you video, a video summary of a meeting you had etc. Email videos are powerful and you’ll be surprised how much of an impact they can add to your emails.

While video cannot do the job for you, it can help humanize your company, personalize the sales process, and help to quickly communicate the value of your products and services.


David Gitonga



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VIDEO: Attending the China Trade Week – July 1-3rd, 2015

The China Trade Week, which is the first comprehensive China-focused trade event to be hosted in Kenya and the East Africa region, kicked off from 1st to 3rd of July at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC) in Nairobi.

The China Trade Week brings together Chinese companies across various industry sectors including building and construction, consumer electronics, electric vehicles, plastic molding equipment and materials, home electrical goods, green energy solutions, portable housing solutions and elevators system.

The 3-day event is designed to provide Chinese companies with a unique opportunity to meet, discuss and develop trading and business partnerships with both Kenyan entrepreneurs and the region’s business community across various commercial sectors.

I had a great time during the exhibition as you will see in the video.



David Gitonga


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How to be Successful on YouTube – 5 Case Studies

Digital marketing may be a hard nut to crack for some, but once you learn the fundamentals, you will quickly be amazed by how everything seems to fit in just right. You will enjoy playing on this huge and growing platform. The true judge of any idea online is, not the source, but if the idea works. Everything else is irrelevant.

YouTube is one of these platforms where if you can get it right, you are bound to win big time!

I took time to review what and how five non-marketers are leveraging YouTube with remarkable success and what we can learn from their approaches.

#1. Cross-Promotion of Facebook and YouTube Video

Michelle Phan, who runs a beauty channel, has over 7 million subscribers, the last time I checked. She’s not only creates high-quality content with expertise, but also has a fair amount of marketing and web savvy instincts that has helped her become a YouTube sensation.

She leverages her sizable Facebook fan base using the new Facebook video platform. Rather than simply drop a link of her new YouTube video or publish a post, she creates a small 15-second trailer to promote her YouTube video and uploads it to Facebook.

The uploaded video in Facebook’s newsfeed will autoplay and is the ideal length for the Facebook audience. To cap off this cross promotion, she also adds a link back to her Facebook page on her videos description section.

Key Takeaway:

Michelle understands that in order to reach her audience, who may not necessarily be in YouTube, she has to tailor her messaging to the platform where her potential audience is, in this case, Facebook. She thus creates Facebook video micro-content which nudges her audience towards her core content centered around YouTube.


#2. Complimenting a Video with a Long-Form Blog Post

John Mitzewich, who runs Food Wishes, a chef teaching channel, has over 1 million YouTube subscribers. John has been able to consistently create recipe videos that have been wildly successful because of the synergy that exists between his blog and his videos.

The two types of content compliment each other so well that if you consume one, chances are high that you will consume the other. This, in turn, results in cross-pollination that works very well.

Key Takeaway

To truly have a cohesive content strategy, your content needs to be inter-related. The synergies between your content needs to be very real if you aim to pursue a similar content mix. John seems to have stumbled upon this strategy early on and discovered it works perfectly for him.

#3. Make Commenting a Part of the Content

Mike Rugnetta uses philosophy and critical theory to analyze modern-day trends on the PBS Idea channel. With over half a million subscribers, the channel is bustling with activity primarily because the channel encourages it.

Since the channel is often on topics people feel strongly about, Mike poses more questions and less answers. Instead of simply letting the audience participate on in the background, the PBS team actively encourages debates through open questions. It even dedicates the last third of each episode to discussing and addressing the top comments from the previous episode.

This feedback mechanism fosters constructive discussions and encourages viewers to explore the rest of the channel.

Key Takeaway

By specifically tailoring their content to feature the comments, PBS has been able to redirect and tame a particularly difficult part of YouTube – the comments section – to their advantage. This in turn enhances the channel’s content and provides a value all of it’s own.

 #4. Maintain Graphical Consistency to Build Your Brand

Even while covering a broad scope of topics or even unrelated variety of topics, which may confuse a regular audience in most cases, it is possible to implement a strong and coherent visual style. The School of Life YouTube channel does this beautifully using  various elements and ideas that bring out a consistent style and design.

Despite the varied topics and the depth and breadth of what is covered, you get the sense of consistent pattern even from the video list in grid form below:

Key Takeaway

The School of Life understands that in order to keep their branded messaging coherent, it is necessary to tie certain elements together. In their case, it’s how the videos look and feel. By maintaining their consistent look and feel, they can discuss a wide variety of topics without diluting their brand or confusing their audience.


#5. Use Humor to Communicate Complex Ideas

In order to tackle difficult subjects, Glove and Boots have come up with entertaining and enjoyable approach that makes their videos noteworthy and catchy. By use of puppets, the channel is able to create supremely entertaining and universally accepted video content, making uncomfortable subject matters worth watching.

Dry subjects are brought to life using humor and wit which has proven to be very effective for the channel.

Key Takeaway

Even the most unlikely and unremarkable topics can be discussed and brought to life by utilizing humor and wit in your explanation. No matter how serious the clientelle or subject matter, injecting a little cleverness or levity is always welcome and make for more effective and enjoyable content.


If you would like to implement a content strategy on YouTube, give us a call or send us an email:

0721 783 420 





David Gitonga





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A New Window into Real-Time Trends

The web is ever evolving and Google has always played a large role in it. Google recently announced the biggest expansion of Google Trends since 2012 that now allows you to get a sense of what stories people are searching for.

You can now explore minute-by-minute real-time data by getting deeper into topics you care about. You will now be able to track the stories most people are searching for and where in the world interest is peaking.

In addition to Search, Google will now look at trends on YouTube and Google News and combine them to better understand what stories and topics are trending across the web right now.  The redesigned Google Trends homepage will allow for in-depth research on more niche topics in smaller geographies. This means you will be able to track what’s trending or gaining traction, say in Nairobi, and use this data to craft your content to gain the most viewership.

Here at E-LABZ, we are particularly excited and interested in the application of visual content, especially YouTube video, and how this will impact on Search.

Without further ado, watch the video below to hear about the role data plays in their work and how they’re helping shape the future of the field.



David Gitonga




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How to Create A Compelling Business Presentation

                                                                       Enjoying a beautiful sunset in Nairobi, 27 stories high


In an ideal world, the best person should win……

……. the best product,

the most qualified,

the most strategic,

the most experienced…

…… but its rare that they do.

Because it’s the WAY something is presented that creates that winning edge.

Does this then mean that it should be all style and no substance?

Not exactly. However, the example below shows just how, despite having a lot of experience and knowledge, it is possible to blow it by poor delivery and an unmuddled flow of thought.

A High Profile Example

Probably two of the most popular people in the world, Obama and Hillary. Hillary Clinton had everything needed to get her into the White House. She is,

Hugely experienced

Political connections

Known commodity

Been in the White House

Has Bill behind her

Got the female vote

The first woman to run for presidency


……….  On the other hand, Obama had,

Limited experience

Limited connections

Got a ‘weird’ name

He’s black

But guess what; he comes along and WINS



Clinton comes out as if she’s nagging you; he comes out as if he’s leading.

Highly Competitive Markets

If you come from highly competitive markets but you have no unique proposition…. at all, then it may seem impossible to win.

Deep down you want to be respected and seen as someone who has an impact, who inspires, who influences. You want to come out as someone who wins business and who can make a case when others can’t.

How you present your business is key.

One of the most effective ways to do this is by presenting yourself in style and earning your reputation as someone truly worth listening to and following.

In video, this involves a series of steps:

1. Congruency & Commitment – This is where you welcome your viewers and quickly acknowledge that they are in the right place. Reassure them that they are watching a video on the topic they were searching for. That their search is over. Start by introducing your client, who he is and what he does. By identifying his title, the job description and experience, the viewer now knows that they are in the right place.

2. Engage and Empathize – It is here that we want to convey to the ideal customer, hey, I understand you, I know what you’re going through. Let them know that you understand them and their needs. Immediately share, 2, 3,4 etc major concerns that everyone has when attempting to hire them for work.

3. Credibility and Benefits – Make them know you are qualified and will solve their problems. It is at this point that you begin to transition from the problem to a solution e.e. the business owner. Share your experience, and more importantly, your values, as a home builder, dentist, business owner.

4. Compelling Call to Action – Tell the video viewer what to do next. Each call to action is different depending on what type of business you are working with.

This is how you script a high-compelling video in just a matter of minutes.

Your presentation can make or break your business. However, it doesn’t take much to create a highly compelling presentation using the above steps that gets you the results that you want.

The above approach has worked for many and it can work for you as well.


Don’t try to over-complicate it and don’t try to re-invent the wheel.  Give us a call or send us an email and we will show you how at:

0721 783 420 



or    :



David Gitonga






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VIDEO: Unboxing and First Impressions of the Safaricom SmartTab

After reviewing the Infinix Hot and the Tecno Boom, I had an opportunity to review the SmartTab from Safaricom. This tablet is fairly cheap and serves the low-end tablet market in Kenya. While the tab lacks the high-end features of such tabs as the Galaxy Tab or the iPad, it is a great device for children, first-time tab users, and lightweight users.

Here is the video of the unboxing and what we thought of the device right out of the box.




David Gitonga




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I promised to post the full documentary from our latest trip up Mt. Longonot on December 2014. I finally uploaded the video and here is a look at the entire trip up the crater.


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