PORTRAIT: MAGNUS ARNDT & THOMAS POULSEN FROM TK1 MEDIA
April 7, 2021
BY Nina Lyhne
MEET MAGNUS & THOMAS
BA students in Media Studies on the 6th semester
Co-founders of the video production company TK1 Media
They started working on their first assignments together during the summer of 2020 and founded TK1 Media in November 2020
Magnus is in charge of digital marketing and production
Thomas is in charge of video creation and creative
HOW DID THE IDEA OF BECOMING ENTREPRENEURS ARISE?
Both of us have always, independently of each other, had a dream/desire to become entrepreneurs – without really knowing within which area. During the first week of our Bachelor’s degree program, we started getting ideas for a company – whether it was homework help, printing of posters or something completely different. However, we were not specialists in any of these areas. Therefore, TK1 Media started as we saw an opportunity to combine our different competences and experiences. Even though we are both studying media studies, we are not necessarily interested in the same areas within media. Usually, we say that our competences do not overlap at all – and we see this as an incredible strength in our company. So with these different competences and a common core in Media Studies, we saw the possibility of combining video production with digital marketing – video marketing.
HOW DID YOU GET STARTED WITH YOUR ENTREPRENEURIAL JOURNEY?
It started very specifically when Magnus’ study workplace lacked video material. Magnus got hold of Thomas, who was all game to show up with his camera. Together, we started to do smaller jobs that we found through our network. Our immediate approach was to get out into the real world and get hands-on experience in addition to our studies. However, we realized that there was a market for SMEs that lacked both video and advice in the strategic area.
WHAT DOES A TYPICAL WORKWEEK LOOK LIKE IN RELATION TO COMBINING YOUR STARTUP WITH YOUR STUDIES?
Of course, planning is the keyword here. We are relatively lucky with our timetable at Media Studies, as we only have about 10 hours of classes per week. This gives us a lot of flexibility to work before and after classes. This option has become even more flexible with corona, where physical attendance has not been possible.
On a typical workweek, we have 1-2 days of shooting, which we plan for the days we both have off from our studies. In addition, there is a lot of pre-production (planning, storyboard, casting) and post-production (editing, color grading and adjustment), which is somewhat easier to plot in when our scedules allow it.
We don’t want to lie and say that there are oceans of time to spare from our studies and life as entrepreneurs – for some periods, this is not the case. Therefore, we have made a request with Aarhus University to get some support as entrepreneurs. We both have a fellow student to help us with notes and exam reading, when the working days are very stressful. This is an offer that Aarhus University has, which we are very pleased with.
HOW DO YOU USE YOUR ACADEMIC SKILLS AS ENTREPRENEURS?
Simply to differentiate ourselves from a large part of our industry! We think that very few video production companies also have a great understanding of media and the strategy behind a video production. It is not enough to be able to produce a cool video if you do not know which channels to post it through. Our almost three years of Media Studies have given us a solid theoretical foundation. In addition, the video industry is very much characterized by self-taught talents. Therefore, we are actually trying to differentiate ourselves by using the fact that we are students as a strenght. We also use our academic skills every day when we help our customers with their execution strategy.
WHERE IS THE STARTUP TODAY, AND WHAT ARE YOUR DREAMS FOR THE FUTURE?
Today, we are two people in the company and our calenders have started to be quite filled with work tasks. We are starting to see some turnover, but as it looks now, most of this revenue is used for costs in the company – it is not entirely free to have a nice camera, good light and great audio equipment. But from the beginning, we were well aware that the first time in the company would be used to build up a company, which can take off on the other side of the summer holidays. In the near future, we both plan to take a year off from our studies to be able to work full-time in the company (but we will return to do our Master’s degree with the help from Aarhus University).
Our dream is to reach even wider than “just” video marketing. We would like to have a foot in many camps of the media world – we joke that one day, we will achieve conglomerate status 😉
YOUR BEST ADVICE FOR STUDENTS WHO ARE THINKING ABOUT BECOMING ENTREPRENEURS?
Our best advice must be to jump into it while you are studying. We believe that this is the ultimate opportunity. There is no risk associated with being an entrepreneur as a student. You are used to having a low cost of living from being on SU, and you do not have obligations such as a house, a car, children, etc. In this way, it is easier to live a year or two without having a real full-time salary. In addition, you just have so many competent people who would like to help you. In our case, we have received a lot of support from The Kitchen and AU Dual Career, but there are even more organizations affiliated with Aarhus University, and there is no doubt that they are also full of competences and good advice.