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Featured Studio Owner

Kyle Cooley
Home Video Studio - Monroe

Date: 01/14/2016

Home Video Studio owners typically come on board armed with knowledge and experience in some of the areas required for a successful video business but not all. For instance, a highly technical person may want help with ways to market their skills, or a highly creative or gregarious person may not know much about computers and software. That's the beauty of a business that demands an owner be well-rounded with technical, social, and business acumen.

Such is the case with our January Owner of the Month Kyle Cooley of Cooley Video Services, who came to us from a technical background looking to fill in the gaps to turn his love of video technology into a video business. After a few short months and still part-time, Kyle is meeting the "well-rounded" challenge, applying what he's learned, and seeing results already. "I knew I needed help filling the gaps that I had in my skills and capabilities," says Cooley, "and I didn't want to spend my time reinventing the wheel when Robert had done all the work and shown its value."

Kyle has always been intrigued by technology and gadgets. Even before computers became part of our daily lives he was a kid dabbling in all things electronic, and when personal computers came out he took the plunge, purchasing what was sure to seal the sum of all PC's - a Macintosh SE/30 complete with a black and white 9" screen. Thus began the journey that still finds him in front of a Mac, though a bit more powerful, editing video for his clients.

Growing up in Amherst, Ohio Kyle attended college at Eastern Michigan University as an Industrial Technology Education major. "That means ‘a shop teacher'," laughs Cooley. Kyle has faithfully taught for many years in the Monroe, Michigan school district passing on his love of technical and mechanical applications to appreciative students. He currently teaches Graphic Design, Drafting, Electronics and Metal shop.

So how does the Home Video Studio story begin? "Somewhere, someplace a long, long time ago on the internet," Cooley remembers. If it's a little hazy it's because Kyle is a man of deliberation, taking about ten years to see if and how he could turn a passion into a profession. Cooley's is also a story about how a kernel of desire may lie dormant for a season or two, but the right circumstances will wake it up again.

"It definitely took a long time to happen," remarks Cooley. "I recently found an email from Robert inviting me to a Show and Tell from 2005. It's always been in the back of my mind for years but the planets definitely aligned this last year when my circumstances allowed me to take the leap."

Recently Kyle had been driving the 100 mile trip from Michigan back to Ohio regularly up to and after his father's passing as he was the executor of his estate. The day he signed the final papers with the lawyer and was heading out of town, for possibly the last time, he passed Tony and Lori Melendez's Home Video Studio in Downtown Amherst, his old home town. "I had always meant to stop in. I got all the way to the outskirts of town and said to myself that if I didn't check out their business then I would regret it forever. So I turned around and went back to their store. Tony sat down and talked with me for almost an hour and lit the fire that got me started on the path to becoming a Studio Owner."

After that chat it didn't take nearly as long to get moving, and Kyle was installed weeks afterward. He hit the ground running and has been busy since that day in July of last year.

We caught up with Kyle a few weeks ago while he was enjoying Christmas vacation and working on a customer's video project. He was gracious in offering some insights on his new business:

Do any significant days and/or projects stick out so far?

The first time a customer came in a large bin with a whole life's worth of film and a variety of video tapes, and didn't blink as they wrote a large check and went on their way. It was all I could do not to have my jaw drop before they left.

Who are some of your influences?

My parents were fantastic people who worked hard, had all the important things in life, and gave us kids everything we needed to succeed. And of course Steve Jobs deserves a shout out. If not for him all our computers and cell phones wouldn't be as near a satisfying experience as they are.

What, so far, do you deem vital to success at this business?

What's worked for me is to immerse myself in all things HVS. Listen to the conference calls. Read and reread all the guides. Read all the interviews with other owners. Look at everyone's websites and studio Facebook pages. Talk to the other owners and get their opinions on different things. While I was waiting for my install I listened to every conference call back to 2012. That really made me feel like I knew most everyone in the HVS family it really fired me up and gave me the confidence to pursue the dream.

What are some goals?

Grow the business and put my 3 girls through college. And there's this store front I have my eye on ;-)

What part of the business comes easy for you? What part of the business is difficult?

I love the technical stuff even when it's hard. I'm always trying to make the workflow run quicker/easier while still keeping a quality final product. I love it when 3 or 4 projects are whirring along at the same time. On the difficult side, I'm not a natural people person which makes a few things a little more challenging, but I'm working at it and getting better every day.

Any sayings, quotes, or aphorisms that you adhere to that apply to your business?

To the steady goes the prize. Or as my Dad used to say: Inch by inch it's a cinch. Corny but true.

What are some prominent lessons you've learned so far?

Stick with the plan and don't overthink things. You don't have to do everything at once but you have to keep plugging away at it.

Congratulations to Kyle Cooley of Cooley Video Services in Monroe, Michigan our Studio Owner of the Month!

Kyle Cooley
Monroe MI

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Here's what we'll cover at Show 'N Tell Saturday.

The number one thing we'll cover is making money in the video business. I'll cover pricing video as well as collecting the money. What's the difference between a $500.00 video and a $5000.00 video? Are you leaving money on the table? I'll teach you how we do it! Oh... what about a $30,000.00 video?
This is the great unknown for most people who attempt to enter our industry. How do you get business and find clients? I'll share with you.
I'll cover our 12 month and 21 day in person training program in depth. How do we take you from where you are now to where you want to be? We are very good at this as long as you can take that first step and get to Show 'N Tell!
You'll be in my studio all day so we'll definitely get into the nitty gritty on equipment and gear. How will you outfit your studio? Do you have current equipment that can be used? Maybe and if so that will save you some money.
Home Video Studio is a short cut to success. You may be looking for both financial success and creative achievements - money in the bank and an Oscar! We make no promises except to put you in an environment with others who have the same vision. Our mission is to help you achieve success as you define it.
Not everyone is out to make a fortune. Home Video Studio is a very fun and exciting business and lifestyle. Want to turn your hobby into a real live functioning studio? We can do that for you. Want to get your family involved in the business? We'll help train them. This is a very family friendly business.
We'll discuss transitions and getting started. Going to quit your job? Come out of retirement? Convert a 401k? Will you work the studio part time until you can go full time? We will start designing a plan for you at Show 'N Tell Saturday.
We are experts in funding and financing. If you need us to help you find the money we would be happy to. It is easy to convert a 401k or IRA with zero penalty. Many people do a refi or a home equity loan. There are other avenues as well. One of the things we do on Saturday afternoon is cover financing. It's not that difficult. If you need consultation on funding call us.

We suggest you bring your spouse/partner to our Show 'N Tell Saturday. That's our treat. You'll know a whole lot more about running a Home Video Studio by end of day on Saturday!

Show 'N Tell: A first glimpse
john and tammy
"Tammy and I came to a Show 'N Tell Saturday. The initial conversation was Robert talking about what it is to be a Home Video studio Owner. Of course we'd listened to the CD's over and over in our car for a couple of months. I think Then we had the presentation and we signed right there at the end of the presentation."
- John Montgomery - Newark, OH.
tony and lori
"Our Show 'N Tell Saturday was on May 11, 2002 - Mother's Day weekend! We were already operating our own video business, but we wanted to run it at a higher level with better equipment. We needed a plan and a system like the one offered by Home Video Studio. If you're thinking about HVS, you should go to Show 'N Tell Saturday."
- Tony & Lori Melendez - Amherst, OH.
Call 317-358-5932 or 1-866-714-1956 to reserve your spot! Or Email Robert@homevideostudio.com. Space is limited. Travel paid for qualified attendees!
"You may say I'm a dreamer But I'm not the only one I hope some day you'll join us"
- John Lennon "Imagine"
If you would like to learn more about starting your own business and see more videos teaching you how!
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