Tips and tricks for the video newbie

Perhaps you’re the independent type when it comes to a marketing plan and you choose to purchase a video camera and editing equipment to shoot your own videos for your websites. But can you succeed with marketing videos if you’ve never had any video training? Some might say yes, but there’s no doubt your video will see an increase in views if you learn a few do-it-yourself tips.

1. Have a plan. In the video production world, we call it storyboarding. It’s a plan of shots, sequences and directions for a film, and it can be done in a variety of ways and without too much work. Your plan will save you a lot of time by serving as a guide for what you’ll capture on video and how you will edit, or arrange, your video clips for the final version. If you’re new to creating a video plan, start simple. Jot down what you’d like to capture in each take of the video and write a script for anyone speaking on camera. Also, make sure you write down notes about each take so you’ll know which sequences to use in your final video and which to toss out.

2. Use a tripod or another tool to balance your camera. This might sound obvious, but some people also might think they have sturdy hands. Just keep in mind that no one wants to become dizzy after watching your self-made video. If you don’t have a tripod or funding for one, you can balance your camera on anything sturdy and level. For example, find a stack of books and place the camera on them at the height and distance where you want to film.

3. Minimize background noise. Background noise can be good for movies or sporting events, but it’s just distracting if it’s not a part of the scene you’re trying to convey. You can minimize ambient noise by using microphones if you have them or by using an editing software, such as Final Cut Pro or Audacity (a free version) to edit some of the noise levels. See this article for more information about styles of microphones and the benefits of each type to find one that’s perfect for your video.

4. Use a variety of shots. Unless your video is shorter than a few seconds, your viewers will become bored staring at the same image for any longer. Fix this by using a variety of shots, even if you’re only filming one subject. This is quite easy if you have more than one camera. You can set one camera at a medium-length distance of your subject and another camera at a closer angle showing a different side of the subject. Then, during your editing process, you can switch angles quite easily. Or, if you only have one camera, you can shoot multiple takes with different angles. Also, search for other elements to show in your video. For example, if you have someone talking on camera about a product, make sure to capture a few shots of the product to add variety to your video. Watch an example of how a beginner can use a variety of shots here.

5. Get creative! After you learn how to use a variety of shots, it’s time to make your viewers come back for more! Add new ideas, such as a virtual tour if you’re creating a commercial about a place or a how-to showing the process of making something you’re representing. Or, if you work for a large company, put the CEO or executive director on camera so customers can get to know the person behind the business. See more creative ideas here.

Do you have any other tips for beginners? Post them in the comments section below.

Pre-roll Video; don’t just post an ad, engage!

Comparing web video with TV is and will continue to be a hot topic for years to come. Certainly there are some similarities that warrant a closer look to determine how each benefits the advertiser and the viewer.
I think most of us would agree that nobody really likes exchanging program viewing for watching a commercial yet this is something we’ve all come to accept and understand as the necessary part of television viewing…that is, until now, when online video is shaking up the offline broadcast world.
According to a recent article written by Jay Miletsky for Media Post:  “the Web gives marketers an opportunity that TV doesn’t: the power to engage, and connect with your viewers through direct interaction. You’ve got your entire audience watching your spot with their fingers on the mouse button, just waiting for a good reason to click on something, and (apparently) bored and antsy because they have to suffer through your ad at all”

read full article here:

Video Production Ideas For Businesses

Using video to promote business is becoming a mainstay rather than a luxury for many business owners who market their products or services online today. In this video blog, Diana D’Itri talks about a few ways to use video depending on what type of service you provide.


Exploring The Potential Of iPhones, iPads, and Mobile Apps?

Over 100 personal injury lawyers joined Ken Hardison in Las Vegas last week for the semi-annual meeting of the Personal Injury Lawyers Marketing & Management Association (PILMMA). They came to learn the latest from leading lawyer marketing experts. They came to get answers and insight from Ken Hardison and they were not disappointed.

The buzz on day one was all about iPhones, iPads, smartphone apps, new media, Internet ideas, emerging technology, and mobile marketing. Patrick Anderson from shared strategies, research, and cases studies that revealed for the first time, how to launch a successful mobile app promotional campaign – along with the actual results that other Personal Injury attorneys have achieved.

The trends suggest that mobile phone usage is set to overtake PC usage by 2013 so what does this mean to personal injury lawyers? Ken Hardison does not claim to have all the answers — but he sure knows how to kick off a conversation and invite the right people to turn it into a lively discussion.

For many attendees, this was the first they had heard about mobile apps, but it did not take long for them to realize the potential. “We see this as an opportunity to be there with our clients right at the scene of an accident,” says Nicole Cerrulo, Marketing Director at “Being first in mobile marketing today is just as important as being the first attorney to have a search optimized website 10 years ago. More and more people prefer smartphone technology for their communication and if an attorney ignores that, they’re just kidding themselves”.

“This is one case where being first matters. The firms who understand this are quietly gathering market share by acquiring thousands of app downloads each month in their marketplace,” Mr. Anderson pointed out, as he shared download statistics for attorney apps provided by Google. “Our research suggests that most people will install ONLY ONE attorney app on their phone and are unlikely to remove or replace these apps”.

This was my first PILMMA event and I was quite impressed by the caliber of the speakers and panelists. I was especially thrilled to finally meet Trey Ryder in person. He is every bit the brilliant marketer and perfect gentleman. Attorney George Sink, speaking at the conference, gave credit to PILMMA and the marketing experts that Ken Hardison has introduced him to, saying “Trial and error is expensive. I follow Ken’s advice and it’s like having a crystal ball to guide me towards success”.

Learn more about PILMMA, in this interview with Ken Hardison, and learn the power principles and marketing strategies he has successfully applied to his personal injury practice over the past 30 years:


Diana D’Itri is is a recognized eVideo Evangelist. She has specialized in working with law firms and personal injury attorneys for over seven years. Ms. D’Itri has recently been asked to head up, working hand-in-hand with mobile developers to launch app acquisition campaigns and provide strategic video marketing solutions. She can be reached for comment at



Web video for content marketing!

The term content marketing is a fairly new term.  In a nutshell, content marketing is just what it sounds like, creating content or creating information and marketing or posting it on the Internet. Search engines are always seeking new original content, new information, and as an expert in your industry or someone who understands your business, you may have knowledge that is sought after by people searching online. This information or content is valuable as you are able to publish it online and help others with it.

When you capture that knowledge, on camera or through articles, blogs, etc… you create your own original content that drives traffic through search engines and also can be used to connect with your prospective clients online. How-to videos are great for this as well as Q&As. Creating valuable content through video is yet one more medium for promoting your expertise online and ultimately building your company or product’s brand awareness. That’s the key to successful content marketing.

If you need assistance in determining how best to create interesting video content for your online marketing, schedule a no obligation consultation.



Good online reputations start with proactive steps

It’s been said that it takes years to build a reputation but only minutes to destroy it.

So what do you do to protect the reputation you’ve built for yourself online? You want to project your best image when your name appears in a simple Google search, so here are a few tips by IDR’s Diana D’Itri.

1. Be Proactive: Stay ahead of the game and regularly search your online identity. Sometimes it’s as easy as just Google searching your name. Or you might want to dig a little deeper and search blogs and social networking sites. TipGoogle Alerts is a great tool for tracking your online profile. Simply set an alert for your name and you’ll receive a daily email with new links to anything mentioning your name online.

2. Create your own reputation: That’s right. Using smart searching engine optimization (search terms, keywords, etc. that bring results to the top of search engines) allows you to create a positive reputation for yourself or your company. You can use your own blogs, online videos and social networking sites to build your own reputation.  Creating your own personal and company profiles allow you to post the kind of information you want to be available to those searching for it.

3.  Make use of what’s already out there: Find the positive reviews and articles about your company (or yourself) and spread those around. Post links to them from your website and share with others. Cross-linking between profiles and content with links to the pages that represent your accomplishments will help you get a higher ranking in search engines.

4. Use video: Of course, online video is an emerging and increasingly popular tool for creating and marketing your brand. So use it to your advantage and create a clear, positive reputation for yourself! Video allows you to appear in a more personable format, and it can be used to capture your expertise and sincerity. As you produce more videos, blogs and articles, your business will get top spot rankings in search engines. This means people searching for key terms – or for your name – will see this wealth of positive information you’ve made available. In essence, that creates your reputation in the searcher’s mind.

And, as always, contact us for help with branding your online reputation or creating dynamic videos for your company to be used on websites, social networking sites and online distribution lists.

Making your video affordable not cheap

There is a difference between affordable and cheap. When it comes to producing a video to showcase your company’s best assets, you want to make sure the quality doesn’t look cheap but the work is affordable.

Online video in its basic form is one of the most affordable ways to market your product or business. To get it right and make sure your video looks quality and is not cheap looking – consider coming up with a budget. Do you already have a camera, or do you have funds to make a one-time investment (with upgrades later down the road)? Do you have a microphone to capture clear sound and lights to make your video look professional? Or do you have enough funds to hire a professional team to create your video?

Figuring out your budget is your first step. First, start by comparing the benefits of video as opposed to other types of advertising, such as newspaper or print advertisements and television or radio ads. Think about the money it takes – often a lot – to pay for those types of ads to be published. Now think about taking that budget and applying it to video. You can use some of the budget for marketing tools to broadcast your video online or for hiring a production company to make sure your video is of the highest quality. Also, consider how much time it takes to produce a good video. How much is your time worth when it comes to doing it right the first time?

After considering your budget, look for various free tools that help you get started. Check out this blog post, for example, of free video editing tools you can use yourself with instructions included. And here’s another blog post with several free tools to make an entire video by yourself. But also don’t underestimate the professional abilities of a video production team you can easily hire to do the work for you. And don’t forget that some of the most affordable ways of making your video accessible come in the form of social media. Use Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and other social networking sites to market your video – and maybe it will even go viral!

So what’s the price you’re willing to pay to get your video right while still maintaining costs within your budget? Check out what some other small businesses have done with their educational and marketing videos at affordable costs to them by reading this blog post by REELSEO. Do you have your own tips? Share them with us in the comments section below.

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