Shooting Video with Gerry Oginski in St. Maarten- Part 2


Dawn Beach Club, St. Maarten; A view from the pool

Johnny B. Goode, Special Reporter to the Lawyers Video Studio- Part 2

This is wild. We arrived in St. Maarten at 11:00 a.m. today. It was an early morning flight leaving JFK at 7:00 a.m. The water is gorgeous. The views are stunning. It’s my first time here and Gerry and his family have gotten me all exited about the great things to do here. I’m really looking forward to it.

Our first stop is Pineapple Pete’s restaurant for lunch. It’s a really cool outdoor restaurant where the decor is a mix of fire department t-shirts mixed with a distinctive Caribbean flair. As you’d expect, it sits partially on the water.

The first thing I notice about Gerry is that he takes his camera wherever he goes. His kids tell me that he is rarely without it. When he’s not shooting video he’s busy taking photos. Hundreds of photos. In fact, he and his wife challenge each other to see who can take more and better photos of their kids during their vacations.

I was really surprised when I learned that Gerry will take an average of 750-1,000 photos during a week-long vacation. His wife will take about 500 photos. They joke who is the better photographer. I get the sense she is.

After lunch, we pile into a really large van and begin to make our way to the resort. I’m told it will take about 20 minutes to get there.

St. Maarten is an island divided into the Dutch side and French side. There’s one main road that connects the entire island. We’re heading toward the French side, although we’ll be staying on the Dutch side at a place called Dawn Beach.

After 15 minutes we start heading up into the hills. The scenery is magnificent. The views from the top of the mountains are stunning. I’m getting excited wondering when we’ll get there.

Before I realize it, Gerry announces in a voice clear and keen… “Welcome to the Westin…our home away from home.” We then begin our descent into the resort down an incredibly steep and worrisome narrow drive. The road flattens out and we’re here!

Time to settle in and explore the resort.

The Westin in Dawn Beach is a luxury Caribbean resort. I took a walk out by the pool and was floored. It’s just magnificent. Multi-levels of pools that look out over the ocean. Very majestic with lots of beautifully manicured palm trees and shrubs. I immediately start to relax and get into the Caribbean vibe.

As I walk down to the powder-soft fine sand, I notice the water is rough and the surf is windy. Gerry tells me that this is one of the roughest beaches around and that it’s not the most ideal place to swim. In fact, he says there are about 7 other beaches that are much better to swim than right here at his resort.

Nevertheless, it’s a stunning view. I can’t wait to order my first drink and settle in.

Join me in my next post when I begin to explain what I’m observing as Gerry grabs his video equipment to start shooting video.

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Gerry, I've read your book and watched at least 100 of your videos, and follow your blog, so "I feel like I know you already!".

I wanted to introduce myself, I work for an attorney, David Aylor, in the Charleston, SC area. I do all his in house marketing, and most recently have focused on video marketing, using your approach.

We started exploring the strategy last July, started filming by September, and published the first video to YouTube Nov. 1. I am now publishing 2 videos per week and the response had been great.

I want to share with you how we have be utilizing the material on Facebook, to build a community of "friends" of the law firm. These are previous clients, referral sources, friends of the staff, other attorneys, new media (radio, TV, and print) as well as other prominent folks in the community.

I really was against the idea of Facebook marketing at first (because I think there's alot of hacks and snake oil salesmen in the "social media/SEO marketing" world). But I was very wrong, the content we are creating is being liked, shared, and commented on, and Facebook's strong community platform (and it's EdgeRank algorithm) is giving us a great way to keep our "inner circle" close to the office, and relevant in the minds of them and their friends.

This was the first video we posted to Facebook-
"Can My Facebook Profile Be Used As Evidence In Court?"
95 likes, 25 comments, 27 shares

The local NBC anchor actually saw it in his Facebook feed from a friend sharing it, and interviewed David Aylor for a 6 o'clock news story on Social Media and Privacy in the legal system. (you can see here if you'd like

I would love to show you more about how I'm strategizing these videos for YouTube use as well as Facebook now. I think there are definitely some areas of practice and law firms that it wouldn't work for, but I'm sure there are a bunch that would benefit from it.

Thanks for all you do, and I hope I get the pleasure of meeting you soon!

David Haskins