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.


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. 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.


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.


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 just breaking into the business, 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 their brand. 

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


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.


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.


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.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Using Video to Market Your Business

The Upside to Video Marketing

Video marketing is a fundamental tool for virtually any search engine marketing campaign. It is a quick and easy way to get your message across and also keep your website’s bounce rate low. Video marketing is critical in link-building. It is the new wave to make money online. Video marketing might just be the proper tool for your small business enterprise. It is definitely a powerful way to increase website traffic.

Corporate video production is among the most truly effective video marketing techniques. Another benefit to video marketing is the fact that the videos show up highly within the search engine result pages, but in addition it shows up with an image of the video. There are many important factors which make video marketing so powerful. Before you even begin recording you should choose who you want your target market to be from video marketing. So, if you aim to use video marketing as your own strategy in promoting your company, it's crucial to consider video search engine optimization (SEO) from the outset and be thinking about the appropriate tags to your own videos.

Video Marketing
It's not easy to undertake video marketing. In case you have no idea where to start with internet video marketing, you too can employ an independent video expert to aid you. Some facts about the utilization of video marketing you ought to know are listed below. Although it has become popular, it has to go a long way. Twitter with video promotion is probably the most effective combination of complementary technology ever invented.

Pick a video you would like to post to your own blog. When you start using internet video marketing you have to first decide where you are going to use it. So begin in video marketing by abiding by these 5 tips. 

This video marketing tip should be held in mind constantly. Unlike article marketing, it demands more in terms of finance as it can be expensive to produce a high quality video. However, this is one strategy that can see high return on investment, fast. The entire reason behind internet video marketing would be to personally brand yourself. 

The point is there are many diverse factors which work together to make video marketing beyond the range of the typical individual or little business proprietor. Small businesses too can gain advantage of video marketing due to its low price.

In the world of business, brainstorming is most commonly done in groups. Yes this does take time, but it's a normal element of building a quality video for marketing purposes. Bringing in the ideas of multiple people will result in a more engaging video once the product is completed.

To be successful, you should surround yourself as well as learn from successful business people. There's absolutely no awful idea while brainstorming, but every idea must be on target. This offers loads of opportunity. - L Scott Harrell 

The business offers a vast range of web marketing services. Multi-level marketing is actually a fabulous way to begin earning today. While much of this micro video promotion is relatively new, there isn't much information regarding established best practices but there's information of marketers using all these tools as well as their successful campaigns. If you don't currently utilize online video marketing to construct your company, you are losing out big time. By using strong video marketing techniques it is possible to reignite interest in your site and distinctly boost your brand. 

This informative article is for all those small business owners that want to use online video marketing to secure more customers for their small company. In this article I'm going to teach you the way to utilize video marketing the appropriate way, to help your company, not harm it.

Video Marketing Explained

YouTube channels are exactly the same. Newsletters rich in content are an excellent strategy to include discounts and specials. In regards to video marketing secrets, it's vital to tag your videos properly so as to make it simpler to find in the various search engines. Give very good content they desire. You don't have to look or sound as a TV broadcaster to utilize video marketing effectively. You ought to think about your own broadcast message, with the aim of growing information from their response for their interests. 

People prefer to hear your message along with your message might help somebody else. It's an extremely strong medium that lots of marketers are nowadays using to literally catapult their online businesses into success. The only thing your viewers will want is honesty from you. In case you are only releasing sales pitches, you'll lose your audience. Video marketing for the current network marketer is similar to netting for a fisherman and you are losing out if you are not creating videos for your company.