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Grab a camera - sell products, services and events with video

Do you know that YouTube has now become the second most-used Internet search engine behind Google? It’s also true more people than ever say they’d prefer to watch a video over reading the copy in an email or on a Web site.

No question aggressive marketers these days know using video is hot. But it’s easy for marine dealers to use video in marketing products and services, too. For one thing, today’s digital cameras are simple to use. For another, uploading a video to the Internet or your Web site is easy. It doesn’t matter if you’re showing a new product or simply sitting before the camera talking to customers about a special deal, service or upcoming customer event, video commands viewers’ attention. It’s also “a personal touch” between you and them – they’re not reading you, they’re seeing and hearing you!

Here, according to experts, are some compelling reasons to start using video now:

1. Cheap is the word. Today’s cameras like Flip, Aiptek, Kodak and even an iPhone can do the job. Don’t forget the built-in Webcams on desktop computers and in most new laptops.

2. It’s a personal thing. Video creates a connection still photos and copy don’t. Customers and prospects like to know who they’re doing business with. If they can see you on video, it has the feel and appeal of a face-to-face encounter. People can enjoy watching you and learning about something from you at the same time.

3. You can be an entertainer. Whether you consider yourself such is beside the point. Your video is . . . well, you! Whether you’re selling or informing, you can have fun with it and, thereby, be fun for your customers and prospects. After all, everyone will listen to and like doing business with someone who clearly enjoys what they’re doing. It’s not high drama, it’s just you being you. 

4. Your video can go virtually everywhere because of today’s technology. No computer geek needed here. Upload your video to YouTube (I recently did one for a marine trade association), Facebook and, of course, your own Web site. You can then send customers the link to your video via Twitter, Linkedin, a cell phone text message or email. There are even services that will, for a fee, send out your video to several sites at the same time.

The bottom line is to just get started using video. It is, after all, a Web tool that has an appeal you can’t get any other way. Even if you begin by merely sitting on a boat and doing a simple commentary about something special you’re offering, you will be up and running. No need to produce an Oscar winner here – just capture on video an uncomplicated, down-to-earth description of something. If you’ll do it, you’ll likely be ahead of your competitors who are still focused on building some copy-heavy Web site.?

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