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Lee Firestone is the CEO of OpenReel, a patented remote video capture technology that allows teams to direct and capture 4K video remotely through a user’s phone, which replaces the need for a camera crew. Publishers, agencies, and Fortune 500 companies are utilizing OpenReel’s technology for everything from client testimonials, interviews and internal comms to content from key opinion leaders. Lee is responsible for the company’s growth strategy and execution, and he comes to OpenReel with 15 years of digital marketing and sales experience.

Prior to OpenReel, Lee founded Baystone Media, a website and social business that he grew to over 7000 clients which was later acquired by Internet Brands (Hellman & Friedman).

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Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:

  • What sets OpenReel apart and why they enjoyed good traction as a company
  • Lee Firestone shares his favorite use cases of OpenReel
  • The cost-saving benefits of OpenReel and how it compares to expensive video cameras when shooting videos
  • Why people are using OpenReel to capture videos rather than video conferencing tools like Zoom
  • Lee talks about what companies are doing right with their video strategy
  • Where the idea for OpenReel come from and why they pivoted to a licensing model
  • Lee talks about what makes their customer service stand out and what he looks for when hiring for a support team
  • How podcasters can use OpenReel for their shows
  • Lee recalls the low and proud moments in his entrepreneurial journey

In this episode…

Video content production is the new normal for different types of business. Still, there’s only one problem: not everyone has the budget, manpower, and expertise to produce top-quality videos on a regular basis. But thanks to OpenReel, businesses can now direct and capture 4K video remotely through a user’s phone, replacing the need for a camera crew.

Lee Firestone is the person at the helm at OpenReel, and he is excited about the traction they are getting. But behind the scenes, there is the journey, the technology, and people making it all come together.

In this episode of Inspired Insider, Dr. Jeremy Weisz goes behind the mic (and camera) with Lee Firestone of OpenReel to talk about the OpenReel technology, people, and processes. They discuss how the idea for OpenReel came about, the best use cases of OpenReel, how podcasters can use OpenReel in their shows, and the low and proud moments of Lee’s entrepreneurial journey. Stay tuned.

Resources Mentioned on this episode

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Episode Transcript

Jeremy Weisz

Dr. Jeremy Weisz here, Founder of where I talk with inspirational entrepreneurs and leaders like founders you’ve heard of and some of you’ve never heard of, you know, before I introduce today’s guest, Lee Firestone, who CEO of OpenReel, you know, Lee, I’ve had the founder of Wistia. On Chris Savage, he talked about when they were really tiny. How they were honest with customers that they were tiny. I also had Pipedrive co founder Omas who talks about having brain surgery, getting married, moving Estonia to the us all in the same year at a time Pipedrive was 10,000 paying customers and now There are over 100,000 paying customers so check out those episodes many more This episode is brought to you by Rise25 which I co founded with my business partner John Corcoran Rise25 basically we help businesses and companies launch and run their podcast and to form the relationships they should be forming because it’s so it serves their business and it also serves their the legacy and I consider leave when someone produces a video and you totally get this when you post a video it’s not just to serve the business but you are almost you know, providing a piece of content that is a legacy lives on for years to come from for you and that person and check out my about page you know it the motivation for me with podcasting comes from my grandfather who was a Holocaust survivor and they did an interview with him. His legacy lives on on my about page because of that, so check out Rise25 if you have questions about podcasting in general Lee I just want to give a shout out to Phil Nadel Managing Director at Forefront Venture Partners you know they invest in high growth revenue generating companies like OpenReel and Chargeback and other companies so I’m excited to have you and also people can check out Storycrews where Ian Garlic talks about how to market video so when you have use OpenReel you can actually get the word out and market it more so without and he you know Ian talks about OpenReel also on his on Storycrews and he’s got the Giants of Video Summit he talks about Lee Firestone’s OpenReel so you can check it out there to Lee Firestone we found out you know that he’s we have some definite mutual interest but he’s CEO of OpenReel and if you don’t know OpenReel which I’ve heard from some of the top video people right now, like they can’t ignore you Lee, they they can’t ignore OpenReel You know what I mean? Like before, maybe they shouldn’t ignore you. But now they really cannot ignore you because you’re a patented remote video capture technology that allows teams to direct and capture 4k video remotely through a user’s phone, which replaces the need for a video crew, a camera crew, right? You could still still be directed and everything like that. But it’s remote in today’s day and age now everyone’s forced to go remote. And now that they’re remote, they’re like, why did I do anything different? The remote. That’s what it is. Right?

Lee Firestone

There was a better pitch than I’ve ever good, actually. Well,

Jeremy Weisz

you know, and the thing is, the potters publishers, agencies, fortune 500 companies are utilizing OpenReel technology from client testimonials to interviews, you name it. And it’s a must so you can check it out at That’s reel, of course, because it’s obviously for filming. But, Lee, thanks for joining

Lee Firestone

Yeah, listen, I’m, I’m excited to be here. And yeah, absolutely. I mean, you have really, I think we’re at the beginning of sort of an interesting paradigm shift. Obviously, the current situation has really accelerated everything right now. You know, we had some pretty good traction prior to all this happening. You know, we patented this technology A few years ago, or started the process, the patented got the patents maybe about a year ago. But the idea of being able to shoot this way, you know, I think has been on people’s mind for a while, and we hear a lot of people coming in saying, I’ve been thinking about this for a while, you know, it’s cool that you guys were able to execute on it. You know, we’re excited just about the usage and the increase of that right now, but you made an interesting point. You know, video lives on and I think, you know, as you talk to more and more marketers and more and more publishers, broadcasters right now, just the, the amount of video that’s being created and requested within and outside organizations is it’s significant. So So yeah, it’s a timely tool and we’re excited about the traction.

Jeremy Weisz

Yeah, I want to talk about some of the use case of video because you serve a lot of different types of companies, you know, from agencies, to publishers to influencers to social media, there’s a lot of uses. It’s funny, I will say, you know, before we got started, we froze up a few times, and you’re like, that’s why use OpenReel. Right now we’re using zoom. But, um, that’s why I use it, you know, but it’s, and I also want to mention, Lee, you know, you did cofound Perk Plate and based on media, which was acquired, and that’s, you know, you could, you know, that’s kind of you have that, that really experienced background in media, even in a lot of different niches. But so talk about one of your favorite stories, use cases.

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