Monday, June 19, 2017

5 Reasons Why Your Website Needs Video Content RIGHT NOW

Do you post or embed video content to your website regularly? Nowadays, for a website to succeed, it needs to provide various types of easily consumable content to an audience who demands content in a variety of formats. If you add a variety of content to your website - text, video, audio, visuals, etc., you will attract and engage a much broader spectrum of potential clients. Perhaps the most important type of content you can add right now is video. 

Let's discuss 5 reasons why your website needs video content today:


1. Video Content Provides More Interactive Information


Text-only content is boring, especially when the message includes numerous long paragraphs of information. Most people will not read your content if it does not capture their attention within the first few seconds. If you only post your content without properly breaking down the paragraphs, adding bullet points, using different font sizes, bucket brigades and inserting some pictures within your content, then you are sure to lose many visitors of your website.

Keep in mind that, unless it's an epic and highly shareable piece of content, text-based articles and blog posts should be written for both the human audience as well as for the search engines. You do that by settling on a longtail keyword (or key phrase) that's important to the audience of the blog and include it several times throughout the article in a way that sounds natural and not overused. (For example, this article is about "video content" or information that is presented through the use of video.)

Text-based content isn't going away and it remains vitally important, especially for SEO reasons, but there's a lot more to writing compelling articles for SEO. This is probably my favorite article on that subject: http://backlinko.com/seo-copywriting. I mentioned the term before, but the section in that article about "bucket brigades" and short, punchy content cannot be overstated. 

Video content is different. Video allows you to immediately captivate your audience and provide more interactive information that is easy to pay attention to, engage them through visual communication and move them through to your call to action.

Video content serves to refocus your website visitor's attention through impactful visual and auditory communication strategies. - L Scott Harrell

2. Video Content Gives More Power to Your Main Content


By embedding a video in the main content areas of your website or blog posts, you are able to add more emphasis through visual communication, which makes it a much more powerful message. The addition of a video can also help you to better explain the ideas found within your content. For example, if you are writing a tutorial about how to do exercises properly in order to lose weight, you can add a video or two of a person performing the specific exercises. This will ensure your audience understands exactly the message you intended. As you can see, using only text to write how-to tutorial might create some confusion with your audience, and video content can prevent such confusions from happening.


3. Video Content Helps with the SEO of Your Site


Before embedding video content into your website, it is better for you to first upload your video to YouTube or some other video platform of your choice (To use Facebook or YouTube is always a huge question.) It is much easier to embed your video directly from YouTube, and it will also help to save the website bandwidth that you have. By uploading that video as unique content on YouTube, it will have its own title and video description. The YouTube listing can help boost the rank of your website when you include your target keywords in your video title and description. Therefore, your video content will also help with the SEO of your website

4. Video Content Can Be Free and Easy to Add to Your Website


Chances are you have a smartphone capable of recording video within arm's reach right now. Pick it up, turn on the video function and hit record. After you end the recording, upload that video to your favorite video host and that's it. You've just created video content and didn't cost you a single extra dollar to do it. 

Of course, if you want to create compelling and engaging videos, then you'll have to go a few steps further. If you have a message or a point you want to make through your videos, then it's probably important to create short scripts to follow until you're comfortable being on camera and speaking "off the cuff". 

Audio is super important and you'll want to pay attention to your surroundings or backdrop, too.

Of course, if you're having a tough time creating videos on your own, you can hire freelance video production help and get the entire video created for you from script writing all the way through video uploading and promotion at VideoToOrder.com.

Embedding video content to your website does not require you to spend more money or invest in another costly marketing campaign. You can do it for free, and it is really simple to do if you have a WordPress or other CMS-based website (like Wix, Blogger, Weebly, etc). If you do not take the opportunity to strengthen your content by adding video content to your website, you are missing out on numerous opportunities and most likely leaving money on the table.

The bottom line for creating video content for most people is the fear of doing video poorly or not creating perfect videos. This limiting belief is KILLING would-be entrepreneurs and is probably the #1 factor why most small businesses are not adopting video marketing as quickly as they should be.

Seriously:

"The Perfect Video Does Not Exist. Get Over It and Get Sh*t Done!"

5. Video Content Modernizes Your Website


Adding video content to your website makes your website look modern and up-to-date. By today's standards, sites that only provide text content are considered old and out of date. Video content also allows you to freshen and improve your content and specific messages multiples times each day, which will help to attract more frequent and unique visits from your audience.

Perhaps as important as keeping content "fresh," video can also dramatically increase the amount of time visitors stay on your website, this is called the "bounce rate." High bounce rates and low time on page is notoriously bad for positive search engine rankings.

In today's environment, video marketing is one of the best and most strategic methods of marketing your business. It has been proven that video messages help the audience more fully retain information and for much longer periods than a text-based message. Why not take advantage of a free and easy method of building your business?

Monday, May 15, 2017

Somewhere between Elon Musk and Mark Cuban... Does It Really Matter?

I had a funny dream last night:

I was part of small group that was put together to add some ridiculously cool tech to an aging resort property as part of its rehabilitation. We were all sitting around a huge table and to the right of me was Elon Musk. He was animated, attentive and definitely garnered the attention of the group when he spoke.

In turn, each of us presented our ideas. For my part, I was going to add virtual reality, projection mapping, augmented reality and holograms to the guest experience. I was going to push the boundaries of interactive video, artificial intelligence and customer recognition to create individually tailored user experiences that blurred the lines of reality. (I really nailed all of the buzzwords.)

Apparently, I impressed Musk with my contribution; he heaped on compliments of how forward thinking and imaginative I was and invited me to lunch to talk some more.


I was AWESTRUCK.


At lunch he continued with the lavish praise and said that there could be a position for me with his company.

As we continued to eat lunch, I really hesitated to open up to him but had to get this off of my chest, even if I came across like a rock star's teenage groupie:

"I know you have zero tolerance for bullshit and small talk but I think our meeting is more than fortuitous." I explained that I really didn't read all that many books (to which he rolled his eyes and I agreed I needed to read more) but that I had just finished reading his biography. I was enamored with the forcefulness with which he chased his overarching dream of saving humanity.

"You will go down as one of the greatest and innovative American industrialists in history. None would compare - Carnegie, Hughes, Ford, Gates... Their accomplishments all pale in comparison!!!" I gushed, "Tesla, SpaceX, SolarCity, Gigafactory, Hyperloop, etc. were all GENIUS ideas."

He looked at me at me quizzically, "You know I'm Mark Cuban, right?"

And then I recognized Cuban...

Bwahahahahaha!!!! I woke up at exactly that moment feeling a bit embarrassed and chuckled that I'd even feel that way in the first place.

VideoToOrder.com launches this week and I really did just finish reading "Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future".

Clearly, my subconscious mind is just trying to take it all in.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

The Use of Drones in Private Investigation, Security and Competitive Intelligence

There’s something appealing about being a private investigator. Maybe it’s because they’re so slick and suave in the movies, but we all wish at times that we could be as sharp and witty as the freelance detectives of the silver and small screens. If you have a drone, however, this is a dream that may be a reality sooner than you think.

More and more drone pilots are being called forth to work in the fields of intelligence and security. If you have a drone, you could be monetizing your skills in these fields of work – and here’s how.

Private Investigation


It’s pretty obvious that drones aren’t exactly inconspicuous. They aren’t UFOs, but they are noticeable pieces of modern technology. Tail a person with a drone and they’ll pretty soon figure out they’re being followed in most cases – it can be hard to ignore a drone if it’s large enough and flying close.

Still, in 2015 BBC reported on a private detective that was using drones as tools during stakeouts. The tiny cameras that could be placed onto a small drone would be discreet enough to film the individuals he was gathering information on without being caught. Private detectives don’t automatically have experience flying a drone, however, which is why offering your own piloting services to one may also be wise.

Surveillance


Drones have the capability to fly long distances while simultaneously having a decent power system that allows them to fly for long periods of time. Equip a drone with a GoPro or similar device and you essentially have a mobile security camera.

More and more businesses and property owners are using drones for surveillance, and utilizing your own drone for this purpose can be an easy way to get a part time desk job. In fact, most freelancers in the field of competitive intelligence and security work make their living off of surveillance jobs. All you need is your drone, a camera and a computer (or other device) to watch the live feed from.

Reconnaissance


Let’s say you want to get some information about what your biggest rival is up to – what better way to get that data than to spy? Drones are being used for just that in the world of business; a world where getting the one-up on your competition can be the quickest and surest way to success.

If one business wants to know what another business is doing, an easy way to snoop is through drones used for competitive intelligence. Smaller mini drones can easily be sent into “enemy territory” to gather data, and you’ll be amazed at how many businesses will pay top dollar for this kind of sleuthing.

In the past, all of these drone jobs were taken up by helicopter pilots, advanced security systems and people willing to put in expansive man-hours to get crucial information. As it goes with most industries, drones are now making things a lot easier. As a drone owner, you have potential in this market. Tap into it by offering your security and snooping services to PIs and businesses. You’re sure to get a few bites.


Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Scuba Diving with Spotted Eagle Rays in Cozumel Mexico

Despite the normal current present while scuba diving in Cozumel, I managed to get this beautiful group of spotted eagle rays on video... 


The water at Punta Sur was absolutely crystal clear that day with visibility in excess of 200 feet. 

Did you know that a group, or what we might usually think of as a "school", of any type of ray is called a "fever"? 

So a group of spotted eagle rays, manta rays, stingrays, devil rays or any other ray is a fever - though admittedly when I see them gliding this gracefully in formation, I like to thinking of them as a squadron.  

I do frequently get asked by people interested in scuba diving in Cozumel when the best time of year is to see spotted eagle rays. We usually see the most eagle rays in Cozumel between January and March. Of course, there are the few that arrive early or stay late and we do see them on occasion throughout the year.

The best location to find eagle rays in Cozumel is usually to the north, outside of the marine park, at a dive site we locally refer to as "Eagle Ray Alley" or at Punta Sur over the sandy bottom.

I've put together a more complete article with additional videos, facts and information about the spotted eagle ray season in Cozumel over on the ScubaLuis website. Having dove with over a dozen dive operations here in Cozumel, I've found ScubaLuis to be the very best scuba shop in Cozumel right now and am really happy to support his new and growing business. 


Don’t Sell Your Skills Short – The Importance Of Getting Paid What You Deserve

With YouTube being the most popular video sharing platform, and the popularity increase of video content online, many people want to tap into the opportunity of making money from videos. Many people want to start their own channel on YouTube and publish their videos regularly, so that they can make money from it. But, since most of them don’t have the skill in video production, they usually hire video freelancers to get the job done for them. The problem is that as a video freelancer, you might only receive low payment for your work due to the high demand of video creation services.

The popularity of video publishing is also creating an increase in the number of video freelancers, which are trying to compete with each other by lowering their rates. This is something that you should avoid doing. Why? That’s because video production requires a complex skill, time, and dedication to do. You cannot afford to trade your time and skill for a cheap price. So, you shouldn’t sell your skills short. 

Here are 4 reasons why you should get paid what you deserve:


1. Your clients can potentially make a lot of money from your videos. This is the first reason. If your clients are publishing your videos on YouTube, and they get millions of views, then they make a lot of money from it. Will you charge your video production peanuts if you know that your clients will earn a consistent passive income per month from your videos? This is why you should price your services accordingly.

2. You offer different style of video production. Let’s say that your video production style is different from those low quality video freelancers that are offering their services for a very low price. The unique style that you provide in your video alone is worth paying more. Your clients will have a difficulty searching for your replacement if you stand out from the crowd. What does it mean? If you are unique and different, you will need to charge your services more.

3. You are not obligated to follow the steps of your competitors. If your fellow video freelancers are competing with each other, and offering the lowest price for their services, you don’t have to follow their steps. By lowering your rates, you will only attract clients with a limited budget, which cannot afford to pay for the premium services. You want to attract big clients that are willing to pay more for quality. If you can provide the quality that they ask, why should you sell your skills short?

The market will determine what your services are worth... don't let others fool you into believing otherwise. - L. Scott Harrell


4. You spend a lot of time producing your videos. A video creation project cannot be done in a day. Unless you have a lot of coworkers to do the project, that might happen. But, if you are working alone, or just working with one or two co-workers, then you will need a lot of time to complete a video creation project. It can be a few days to a few weeks, depending on the complexity of the project. If you charge a low price for your service, then you will only bring back a little income from your freelancing service each month. It will not be good for your business.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

6 Ways to Stand Out as a Voiceover Artist


As the digital era races forward, the need for voice-over professionals will increase exponentially. Today there are thousands of specialized YouTube channels, countless podcasts, educational videos, digital newspapers, video blogs, online radio stations and ebooks all competing for a piece of the listening audience. Naturally, this creates a great deal of demand for successful voice-over artists in the video publishing business.

Whether you are a star voice-over artist or are a freelancer just breaking into the business with a website and a few social media accounts, it is critical that you differentiate yourself from your competition. It is very typical for a producer to audition hundreds of voice over actors before choosing the perfect one. Your job is to be professional, be remembered and get the job.

Below you will find 6 ways to stand out as a voice-over artist:

1. Remain Calm at All Times


As with all artistic endeavors and business, your state of mind can greatly impact your voice over performance. Therefore, it is critical that you remain calm at all times, especially during your voice-over sessions. As a professional, you must train yourself to separate your emotional state from your work. Although it is normal to feel a bit nervous about the first few recordings, you will need to find a way to calm yourself. Otherwise the audience will hear this excited state in your voice. Many professionals find that they are able to calm their nerves through simple, counting exercises or repetitive deep-breathing exercises.

2. Speak Clearly


When recording a voiceover, it is imperative that you speak very clearly and enunciate every syllable properly. You must not mumble or speak too quickly. Keep your voice loud and clear. Eliminate any extraneous noises that can be heard during a recording session such as chewing gum, swallowing a drink, etc. You will also find that reading aloud several times each day will help train you to deliver messages in a loud, clear professional manner.

3. Match Your Tone of Voice With the Script


Always study the script thoroughly before you start your recording session. This is important because your knowledge of the script will determine your performance. During your recording session, the tone of voice that you use needs to deliver the exact emotion that is intended in the script. If the script requires a professional tone, then that is the only tone you can deliver. The more familiar you are with your script, the more you are able to perfect your delivery.

4. Be Yourself


Finding a unique tone of voice that sets you apart can seem like quite the challenge. However, most of the time, voiceover artists realize their success by just being themselves. For obvious reasons, your everyday voice will always be the the most natural for you to perform. Occasionally, however, video scripts may call for a different type of “character” to deliver the message. In this case, have fun experimenting and choose the one that you are most comfortable with.

5. Train With a Coach


Many voice-over professionals spend some time and money training with a professional voice coach.
Voice-over coaches are there to provide valuable tips and feedback on your performance. They can help with all aspects of voice over work: script interpretation, inflection, emotion, enunciation, delivery, etc. Your coach will be happy to work with you on your specific needs and learn new skills. The name of the game is quality; not quantity. The more quality work that you can produce, the more clients will seek your services. This can be one of the best investments for your business.

6. Master the Use of Microphone


Too often, people are afraid of the microphone and tend to shy away from it. As a voice-over artist, the microphone is your only friend. It is time to master the use of microphone. There are many different types of microphones on the market these days: hand-held, wireless, lapel mics, boom microphones and lavaliere mics just to name a few. The best way to get comfortable with microphones to to experiment with the various types. Some professionals find that using a handheld mic is helpful as it gives their hands something to do with extra nervous energy. On the other hand, many people like the freedom that a wireless or lapel mic provides. As a voice over professional, you will find that you spend a great deal of your time with a microphone. Therefore, your success depends on your ability to be comfortable and natural with a microphone.

In today's fast-paced digital age, videos have become the preferred method of communication. While this creates the need for freelance voiceover professionals, this also creates a great deal of competition for these jobs. By following the 6 tips above, you will be able to successfully differentiate yourself from your competition and increase your business.

Monday, March 13, 2017

4 Ways of Promoting Your Business via Video Marketing

ways to market your business with video
The 1979 hit by The Buggles, “Video killed the radio star” was ahead of its time. Few would’ve thought that 38 odd years later, video would not only kill the radio, but also slay the print, picture and dragon as well. But here we are, and video marketing has become the number one medium of selling products and services online. There are 50 ways in which businesses both large and small can use videos to promote and market their brand. 

Here four of my favorite ways that you can use video to market your business:


Vlogs


If a business wants to come across as caring and friendly a vlog is just what the doctor ordered. Reason being, there are a brazillion blogs on the internet, and a vlog is the cure every business should be looking for. Contrary to popular belief and my own stab at it, a vlog is supposed to be easy to produce and doesn't cost you much money either, mainly because vlogs are mostly personality driven, making them the best way to get the most bang for your buck.

Events 


If you what to take it up a notch you could always document the proceedings of your corporate event and post it on your website and social media accounts. Using videos, you can take the party to all those who couldn’t make it to your corporate event. Normally, event videos cost a lot more than other types of videos, but they do pay off in the long run. The video freelancer you hire will have to use multiple cameras to do your corporate event video justice. Another way to boost your business with videos is by using 6 to 10 second video snippets of your event which can then be posted on Vine or Instagram. The montage form of promoting a corporate is gaining traction right now and should be used to promote your brand online. A great event video can without a doubt increase your company’s online presence in a way that the event alone never could.

Presentations


The popularity of TED Talks can be measured by the fact that they are now available on Netflix, which says a lot. These short, but interesting format is immensely popular mainly because of the quality of its speakers and the topics that they choose. While some might argue that TED Talks is a global platform which has a global reach, every business can create a compelling presentation which is a mix of an event combined with a webinar. Businesses can give targeted presentations at a small scale or at company events, and that share them on their website and social media to increase their engagement.



Product Reviews


Another way of promoting your business through the video format is by making videos of product reviews, especially those that are popular amongst your customers. Online retailers such as Amazon rely heavily on the trustworthiness of their product reviews. Although you don’t operate on the same scale as some of the big names in online retail such as Amazon or eBay, you can make product reviews on your products and on other products as well that are relevant and could be useful to your customers. Just think about how happy you will make your customers when they come across a good product that was referred by you on your website or your social media account.

Did you know that content is the reason search began. So, use more videos in your marketing campaigns and don’t forget to diversify the videos you use as part of your marketing strategy.