Ellen joined Lorraine Ball of Round Peg Marketing on her Podcast to share The One Philosophy and how you can apply it to your marketing.
As many of you know, I am the Chapter leader for the Women's Prosperity Network here in Baton Rouge. I believe that participating in a Monthly Mastermind helps to keep me on track to grow my business. I hope that you will join me for the events in April. [Read more...]
Video Marketing is Essential This Year
I truly believe this statement. I have seen it in my own work for my business and for clients. The good news is you don't have to spend a lot of money to do video well. You might not have to spend a dime at all to get started. (Isn't that refreshing news?)
I don't have the money can be one objection that I hear, but you can get started with what you have already.
I don't like how I look is another objection. Hey - I don't necessarily like how I look either. It is about connecting with my followers and video is the best way. I stick with videos above my waistline and make sure that I have the right amount of makeup then I keep smiling and keep connecting with people through video. I honestly believe it is the best tool we have right now.
Start with your Smartphone Camera!
Our smartphones have very nice camera's these days. They will take a good video for you. Some keys.
- Put your phone at eye level or above
- Have a list of the key points you want to make
- Smile and look into the camera
Whether you set your phone up on a stack of books or invest in a tripod like I show here, having the camera at eye level does several things. You are able to keep your posture up so you sound better. You look better because you are avoiding creating a double chin by looking down. Your viewers are not looking at your ceiling (which might have a glaring light or ceiling fan).
I bought an inexpensive (OK CHEAP) tripod on my way out of the drug store one day. It works ok.
The longer and adjustable legs would probably be nice too. (Added this to my wish list.)
Sometimes I write out a full script, but even when I do I take it back down to a bullet list of the key points I want to make so I am not reading to my audience. Maybe that is because I want to see someone having a discussion with me and it drives me crazy to see someone obviously reading. Write out a script and read it MANY times over. You might want to read it enough that the others in your household are tired of hearing it and go start their chores just to get away from you. (Can we say WIN-WIN?)
After you are really comfortable with what you want to say, then write out a bullet list of your points to hang near your camera. They will be there to glance at if you get off track, but having a bullet list will allow you to get to the third point, look into the camera. This one I can't emphasize enough. One of the keys to marketing is to develop an LKT with your audience. That means LIKE, KNOW and TRUST. Do you trust people who can't look you in the eye? Probably now. When I am speaking I also am thinking "look into their eyes" and I am looking at the camera lens as much as possible.
Your smartphone is a great tool to record video. If you want to back away from the camera, you probably want to invest in a microphone. The phones will pick up all of the sounds that it can. I recently tried a recording and the could barely hear myself over the other sounds and voices. I recorded it in a museum and had to re-record it in another location that was quiet but was not my desired location. I have a Movo LV1 Lavalier Lapel Clip-on Microphone the usually does the trick. You can watch a testimonial video I recorded with this microphone here. It makes a big difference in the sound quality of the video if you have the camera a few feet away.
Take a Video With Your Laptop
Most laptops come with a built-in camera. Using that for Facebook Live, YouTube Live. or just recording from your webcam is another way to get started without spending more money. Check your lighting and make sure you have a window in front of you and not behind you. You also will need to turn off any lamps and lights behind you for best quality.
I use Screencast-o-matic when I am recording. It works well for both screen captures and from my webcam. It is very simple to use. Spending the $15 for the removal of their branding, editing tools, and longer videos is well worth the money.
Buy a Few Tools to Upgrade Your Videos
Here is my home "video studio"
One of the first things I would get is lighting. Whether it is just a clip for your phone, or a full-fledged photographer's light kit getting good lighting makes a large difference in the appearance of your videos. I bought a three light kit from LimoStudio. If I am in a hurry, I only set up the one short front light and that works OK. The even lighting of the three makes it so I am always very well lit. So far, I have not burned any of the bulbs out, but there are replacements available. You will want to replace the lights with the "full spectrum" lighting to keep the quality.
After reading many recommendations, I bought the Logitech 910. (I recently heard a live streamer recommend the 920 version for its quality but I do not need to upgrade yet.) The difference in the clarity of the video is incredible. I can tell which videos are done with a good camera versus the built-in cameras. Most of the time I now clip the camera to the light pole so that it is up at eye -level and I am not looking down. Clipping it on a pole also helps me to do a video standing up where I have more energy to present. I love to speak to groups, so standing while I am recording helps me to get that same energy that I have when I am in front of actual people (versus virtual people). My voice person tells me it is better for the diaphragm to be standing so you are able to breathe and project well.
To get a clearer recording, I also bought a microphone. Most people recommend the Audio-Technica ATR2100; at the time I was researching many of the reviews were mixed. I went with the Samson Meteor Mic. I have been happy with the quality and will get a mic stand to make it even better.
On my first videos, people kept commenting about the card catalog that I had in the background. It is a great piece of furniture and I love to tell people the story of how it was gifted to me, but it is not what I wanted to talk about when I promoting my business. I felt like it was necessary for me to get a backdrop. I started with a white backdrop which works best when it is clipped tight to the sides. (Yes I should get a steamer to release the wrinkles.) If you need one, make sure you get the frame as well (or make one with PVC pipes). This is purely optional. Many people creating videos are doing them from their home office and you can see the rest of the room. I just like that the focus is on my content when I put up the background.
I am having some fun with the green screen that you can see in the picture above - but that is an entirely different blog. It takes some practice and is not really necessary. I just LOVE gadgets and being technical. I got bored with the white background as well.
So to summarize - here is what I bought to create my home studio.
Samson Meteor Mic
|Optional Green Screen
6X9 Green Screen
Just Get Started!
Start recording videos. Be patient with yourself - you might record one two minute video fifty times (or at least you feel like it is 50). The more you record, the more comfortable you will be. With comfort comes better videos. Better videos get you more fans and more fans mean more people gain the trust they need to hire you and buy your services.
Have questions about online marketing? Click here to chat with me. I would love to talk to you about how you can incorporate video into your marketing. Do you want to feel more confidence and clarity in your online marketing? Join my Online Marketing GPS community. Learn more here.
Baton Rouge Workshop April 21
Connect, Converse and Convert
I think LinkedIn is one of the best networking tools you can use and I do not believe many people are using it well. During the first part of 2017, LinkedIn's Desktop Dashboard was updated. Join me on Friday, April 21 for a workshop where [Read more...]
picture source: Pixabay
A couple of my favorite small businesses have closed recently
This makes me so sad. I loved the restaurants. I didn't go as often as I should have. After thinking about it, both businesses have something in common.
I was on the email list for both of them. When the businesses were new, they were emailing regularly. They told me about bands playing, specials they were having and reminding me that they were open. They sent me images of chef specials that made my mouth water. I saw their name in my inbox. They let me know they wanted me to come back. When I did visit, I probably never mentioned I came in because I saw the email. How would they know? But I was reminded to come by and I did.
As time went on, the emails became less frequent. For one of them, I don't think I have seen an email for almost two years. I didn't get the reminders that they wanted me to come back. And guess what - I didn't think of them when it was time to make a decision for where I wanted to go eat out or sip on a glass of wine. I didn't come back.
Did they close because they quit sending emails?
I realize that there were many reasons behind why the owner made the devastating decision to close their doors. I realize I don't know the majority of the true reasons. I only know what I can evaluate on my end. I used to get emails with glorious pictures of what the chef had whipped up. Or Social Media posts of the band that was playing. They quit coming as regularly or they just quit. I didn't think of those places when I was considering where to shop or eat. They were not "top of mind" because I had not seen them in a while.
Why should you keep sending emails?
You keep the emails that you collect in the Email Service Provider you select. (Of course, I think that one should be Constant Contact for most local businesses). You are able to segment your list and send emails customized for each of your clients. Sending emails that are interesting to your clients keeps them interested in doing business with you. Take some time to figure out how you might segment your list. i.e. a pet store you might tag the cat owners vs. the dog owners. Focused emails to segmented lists make for higher open rates, better click through rates and higher sales (or money in your pocket.) I am guessing that your open rate for emails is still higher than the reach of many of your social media posts. Will you ever get a 100% open rate. Not unless the only person you send the email to is your mother. You have to promote consistently. That doesn't mean every site every day - but more than once a week on social media. I suggest a minimum of a newsletter a month (and with Constant Contact you are able to post a link to your newsletter on your social media so you get more mileage from that email).
Schedule an email today!
When is the last time you sent out a marketing email? How regularly are you posting on social media? Join me on the Online Marketing GPS and let me remind you to post and schedule recently so you are staying in touch with clients who want to remember you and come in to see you. The people on your email list want to see more of you. Show them the cute things you got at market. Share with them events you are attending. Keep in touch with them. Leave your clients wanting more - show them that they want to come in to see you again.
I love hearing people's success stories. Let me hear yours. Need help? Let's chat! Click here to schedule a one now.