CALVIN MILLER, 23, of Blue Bell, is co-founder and CEO of MotorCar Studios, a digital-content-marketing company promoting the classic-car and car-restoration markets. The startup specializes in Web videos, mini-documentaries and photography to develop content-marketing strategies for its clients.
Q: The backstory on the idea for MotorCar Studios?
A: It started in an entrepreneurship class last year at Temple. The idea was to start a business and be profitable by the end of fall semester. My co-founders, Mike Allen and Andrew Paolucci, and I formed a strategic partnership with LBI Limited, which collects, buys and sells classic cars. They said marketing content didn't match the quality of their cars. We saw an opportunity and ran with it.
Q: The startup money?
A: That came through forming a partnership with LBI. We raised $15,000 for the equipment we needed to do our work.
Q: What's the biz do?
A: We visit clients, learn their story and develop content through photography and videography which aligns with their marketing goals via website, social media, emails and blogging. Classic-car companies are stuck in a traditional marketing mind-set, but the consumer is online.
Q: The biz model?
A: The client pays us for our time. So a one-minute video would be a fee of $1,000, but if somebody needed a package that included videos, stock photography for a website and content-strategy services, then it's more. If work is all over the country, that's a different price than if it's just a single location. A videography, photography and content-strategy package could be $20,000 to $30,000.
Q: Your customers?
A: LBI is one. An auto-service shop in West Chester, D'Antonio Auto Enterprises, was our first customer, and we did a mini-documentary for them for the Philadelphia Auto Show. We have four clients and we're working on three big clients.
Q: The value prop?
A: We are car enthusiasts first, so we view them differently than most marketing or advertising agencies. We take an artistic approach toward the market that allows us to capture both the car story and the business side. Some people buy the cars as an investment; others are looking to enjoy and experience the car.
Q: How big a market?
A: In addition to car enthusiasts and investors, there's a restoration market and auction houses. It's a $3 billion market.
Q: How big a biz is this?
A: It's five of us: three co-founders and two partners.
Q: What's next?
A: It's gone from taking photos of cars to a full-service studio and content-marketing firm. Our goal in the next year is to expand across the country and bring on board top-level talent.