Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Alex Kolodkin, Founder of Set Scouter, located in Toronto, ON, Canada.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

Set Scouter is a film location marketplace connecting producers and agencies with spaces to create. We help producers across North America find spaces and streamline the booking process. Our continuously expanding marketplace connects commercial and video producers with film-friendly spaces. We’ve found locations for Google, Amazon, Walmart, Samsung, WW, Disney, McDonalds, Universal Music, and thousands of other brands and agencies.

Whether you’re a producer in Toronto, Vancouver, New York, Los Angeles, Miami, Chicago, or Montreal, Set Scouter has unique spaces like homes, lofts, restaurants, office spaces, and much more. Along with providing spaces to shoot, we can help coordinate additional services like catering and cleaning for shoot day.

We also have resource guides for permits and production insurance in different cities to help producers as much as possible. Set Scouter is based in Toronto, but we facilitate productions throughout North America. We simplify production, making film location scouting easier, faster, and more affordable.

Our customers are made up of producers and agencies. Whether they're film students in film, agencies producing branded content, or contract producers creating music videos, our Instagram shares more about the type of content filmed with our services. We live and breathe production.

Tell us about yourself

Before founding Set Scouter, I was a corporate video producer, television series broadcaster, and video editor. My passion is production, and I am motivated to help producers unlock their creative talent. I love learning and building, and ultimately, I want to change industries fundamentally.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

As a business owner, my biggest accomplishment is when customers champion our brand by introducing us to their colleagues. By enabling champions and leveraging word-of-mouth referrals, we’ve built a world-class customer success team to exceed customer expectations from the very start. I hoped to build my business on this.

Creating a service that will keep producers returning and trigger buzz enough for producers to recommend our services. Our team works directly with producers each step of the way to ensure the production goes smoothly and communication with the location is clear.

As a result, we’ve worked with many accredited producers and projects and continue to grow our customer base. We’re expanding throughout North America, and producers reach out to us worldwide. As a founder, it’s impressive to see Set Scouter grow.

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

Navigating and adapting to changing environments is a big challenge for business owners. I think the pandemic has been very difficult on businesses. Many had to shut down completely.

However, we’ve been learning to react to such sudden changes and operate within this ambiguity. From the pandemic to potential recessions, we’ve had to deal with implications and adjust our strategies to ensure that the business continues to thrive. As we are dedicated to customer service, focusing on the safety of production crews at our locations has been a priority throughout the pandemic.

This is why I also created Safe Sets International. This global advocacy group provides resources for health and safety on production sets. Accepting the idea of unexpected changes is hard and uncomfortable. Still, it also pushes you to learn and try different things.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Start lean and validate each step before moving on to the next. It’s essential to test different strategies to see what works and what’s best for your business’s growth.
  2. Trust your people. As a leader, trusting your team empowers them and creates an inclusive culture. This supports more efficient team performance.
  3. Always be curious. You can take your business and work in many directions, so it’s essential to be open-minded to different ideas and opportunities.

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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