The Power of Video to Sell Your Products and Services

Today I was talking with a New York Times bestselling author. He was explaining to me how he had used video to drive his most recent book onto the best sellers list. “Nothing sells like video,” he explained.

Many authors have done this in the past few years, including Brendon Burchard, Gary Vaynerchuck and Chris Brogan.

While I haven’t yet done this yet with a book, I have certainly seen the impact of video on building my email newsletter list and booking speaking engagements.

In less than nine months, I have gone from 2,500 email subscribers to almost 40,000. In addition, I have more than quadrupled the number of booking requests coming in for my speaking engagements. Video was a key component in both campaigns.

The good news is that video is cheaper to produce than ever. You can get professional quality video produced for a fraction of what it used to cost. And the results can be well-worth the investment.

When I started considering video, I went to Joel Smith, a friend whom I have known for many years. He operates a high-end, video production company in Nashville called Comprehensive Media.

I really just went to Joel for advice, thinking his price would likely be out of my range. He explained that he was launching a new brand called SimplyVideo for people like me—”when simple is all you need.”

I wasn’t looking for a slick product demo or a book trailer. Instead, I simply wanted to look into the camera and tell people why they needed a life plan (in the case of my email subscriber campaign) or show them some demos of me speaking.

Get this: As of yesterday, the life plan video has had 156,610 plays on Vimeo. My speaking demo (a much more limited audience) has had 17,400 plays. These have worked so well, that I can’t envision doing any product launch without video as a key component.

Here’s why I think video works, and why you should consider it for your products or services.

  • Video is more engaging than other forms of communication. It appeals to more of the senses.
  • Video provides an opportunity for you to build trust. You can communicate in a casual, conversational style.
  • Video gives you an opportunity to demonstrate the product—especially if that product is you!

This is why I have begun working on a video for my new book, Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World. I see it as a key component in the pre-launch campaign.

By the way, if you are interested in creating a video to promote your brand, product, or service, Joel has offered to extend to my readers a special 15% discount on SimplyVideo between now and February 15th. Just enter the coupon code TAYHO112 in the quote page.

If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video is worth ten thousand. That’s why I intend to use even more of it this coming year.

Question: What has been your experience using video to build your brand or sell your products? You can leave a comment by clicking here.
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  • http://jonstolpe.wordpress.com Jon Stolpe

    I used video for the first time on my blog this past weekend.  I normally provide a written week in review post on the weekends that includes my posts from the week along with a few blog spotlights from my reading over the previous week.

    Two weeks ago, I took a Presentation Skills course at work, and I decided that one way for me to practice was to do a video blog post every once in a while.

    My first video was okay, but I’m looking forward to using this tool more effectively and more smoothly as I learn more and as I become more comfortable speaking into the camera.

    Thanks for sharing this timely post!

    • http://joeandancy.com/ Joe Abraham

      I saw your video, Jon. Good start!

      • http://jonstolpe.wordpress.com Jon Stolpe

        Thanks, Joe!

    • http://www.heartyourchurch.com/ Jason Stambaugh

      Definitely a great start. I’d recommend using a tripod next time to stabilize the camera. Keep up the good work!

      • http://jonstolpe.wordpress.com Jon Stolpe

        Thanks, Jason.  I have a ways to go with the equipment.  I filmed it using my iPod.  It’s a start….

        • http://bentheredothat.com Ben Patterson

          Keep it up, Jon!

    • http://www.MicheleCushatt.com/ Michele Cushatt

      Curious … What was your biggest takeaway from the Presentation Skills course? How are you applying it in your video?

      • http://jonstolpe.wordpress.com Jon Stolpe

        There were several big takeaways:  (1) tell a story – I didn’t implement this in my video post, (2) provide a call to action – I definitely did this, (3) simplify – I tried to keep it fairly basis.  One thing that I’m working on is my verbal graffiti – the umms, ahhs, etc.  Overall, this went okay, but I can definitely improve in this area.  Speaking publicly more often (on video or live) will help.

        In a way, the video post was an experiment.  I’m not done with it, but I need to implement some changes and consider how I can produce a higher quality output.

    • http://www.tnealtarver.wordpress.com TNeal

      Good to see and hear you on video. I commend you for your willingness to take that first step. I also enjoyed reading your guests’ posts.

      • http://jonstolpe.wordpress.com Jon Stolpe

        Thanks, Tom!  You should have been in my house when my daughter and I listened to the video.  We were both laughing.

        Thanks for the comment on the guest posts.  It’s been fun to share others with my regular readers and to share on other sites as well.  I’m looking forward to your guest post coming up sometime soon!  :)

    • http://brandonweldy.wordpress.com Brandon Weldy

      My problem has been that I want perfection right from the beginning. I get frustrated when the video does not turn out exactly right and then I convince myself to not use it. I need to just jump in and start practicing!

      • http://jonstolpe.wordpress.com Jon Stolpe

        I can echo those thoughts and feelings.  I want my blogging to be excellent.  But I also want to use my blog as a place to experiment and try new things.  For this first video, I definitely left room for ‘grace.’

        • http://brandonweldy.wordpress.com Brandon Weldy

          I will have to remember that phrase and to allow myself to leave room for grace.

  • http://blog.cyberquill.com Cyberquill

    My experience with video has been that I hate the way I look on camera, and that’s the end of that.  

    • http://joeandancy.com/ Joe Abraham

      Don’t worry. Keep doing videos and you will surely overcome that hurdle.

      • http://leadershipandproductivity.com/ Kenneth Acha

        I agree with Joe. The best way to overcome the hurdle is to do more videos. I am in the same dilemma now. I honestly don’t think I speak as eloquently as I would love to, but I have a powerful testimony and plan to share it as often as I find the chance. I believe I will get better as we go.

        • http://joeandancy.com/ Joe Abraham

          Yes, you will, Kenneth! All the best.

    • http://www.comprehensivemedia.com/ Joel W. Smith

      It’s all about lighting! ;-)

      • Anonymous

        And sound. Sound is SOOOOOOO much more important than people think.

        • http://www.comprehensivemedia.com/ Joel W. Smith

          Bill,

          I couldn’t agree more .  Audio presence and clarity is a key factor to connecting with your audience.

        • http://bentheredothat.com Ben Patterson

          Yes. We don’t want to feel like we’re in a tin can.

      • http://www.MicheleCushatt.com/ Michele Cushatt

        Absolutely. When it comes to any kind of presentation, lighting is essential. The audience (live or virtual) needs to see the speaker’s eyes, or they won’t connect.

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jane-Babich/100002993676826 Jane Babich

          As one that reads various blogs, I enjoy a blog that has a mix of video and written information.  Agreed that a well done video allows me the viewer/reader to connect on a level that just content does not.
          In addition to quality on the video, I enjoy it most when it has the “heart” as the written blog.
          Example: if in reading a blog I get the “feel” that the writer is an out of doors kind of person, to see a video in a studio would not be as received as one done on a front porch. 
          Lastly, because everyone learns and absorbs information differently… some will embrace the video and remember you more than if they read the same information, and then others will remember that one line of your blog because as they read it… it hit a place of understanding.
          Video  or written it is about content and “heart”.

      • http://www.tnealtarver.wordpress.com TNeal

        And making sure you show your good side.

    • Anonymous

      Totally get it Cyberquill, and I go through this with coaching clients all the time. Your biggest enemy is your inner critic. Here’s the thing, unless you’re a monk on a mountaintop… people see you… they know what you look like. 

      Push forward!

      • http://blog.cyberquill.com Cyberquill

        I used to dabble in photography. Although I don’t know much about it, I know this: some folks are naturally photogenic, and some folks aren’t. And it doesn’t necessarily have much do with what they look like in the flesh. (A lot, of course, is about the lighting, as a previous commenter has aptly remarked.)

      • http://www.tnealtarver.wordpress.com TNeal

        In building on what Bill said, have others seen your video presentation? If not, you might get feedback from those who are both honest and trusted in your eyes.

    • http://brandonweldy.wordpress.com Brandon Weldy

      That ends up being much of my problem as well.

  • http://www.ChristianFaithAtWork.com/ Chris Patton

    Michael, I cannot speak to using video the way you are proposing here (I will consider trying it), but I can tell you that it has the same effect in marketing cars.

    We use videos of the vehicles to show off features and condition.  We also use videos to do feature-benefit presentations.  Some customers from longer distances love it when we answer their equipment questions by sending them a video of the interior of the vehicle.

    Without a doubt, the video medium works.  It gives the audience much more engagement than photos and words.  It also ranks better in the search engines because of its effectiveness.

    Now, if I can get past Cyberquill’s problem, then I will try it on my blog as well!

    • http://jeremystatton.com/ Jeremy Statton

      I have never heard that search engines liking video, but it is an interesting thought.

      • http://leadershipandproductivity.com/ Kenneth Acha

        Jeremy,
        That is true. Search engines like video. I know that for sure. I have been doing websites  since 2005 and from what I have learned on the way, videos are a good thing for search engines. You have to name them in a way that they are Search engine optimized though.

        • http://joeandancy.com/ Joe Abraham

          That’s great info! Thanks, Kenneth.

        • http://www.tnealtarver.wordpress.com TNeal

          What’s an example of search-engine optimized, Kenneth? Do you have a well-named video that illustrates your point?

      • http://www.comprehensivemedia.com/ Joel W. Smith

        Jeremy,

        Now that Google owns YouTube, they place a greater importance on video.

    • http://joeandancy.com/ Joe Abraham

      Chris, you can surely overcome hurdles and do powerful videos!

      What you said about feature-benefit presentations is a smart way to utilize this technology.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      I had the same problem as Cyberquill. In fact, I’m still not completely comfortable. But I know it is effective, so I am pressing on.

      • http://joeandancy.com/ Joe Abraham

        Pressing on IS the key!

        • http://www.tnealtarver.wordpress.com TNeal

          Which is true for writing, blogging, speaking, as well as video-taping. Stay the course. Learn. Improve. Do it again only better. Again it helps to have feedback from those you trust and who speak frankly.

      • http://rise365.com Claudia Good

        hah! same here! Glad you are pressing on! enjoyed it.

    • http://www.tnealtarver.wordpress.com TNeal

      Boy, does using video to answer a question make sense. I sometimes read instructions multiple times and still come away confused. Seeing a solution would be helpful.

      I also know that watching Jon Stolpe’s video helped connect me better with Jon (and know how to pronounce his last name).

      I’m surprised that a car salesman hasn’t already made numerous commercials and become a household name in LaGrange, Georgia, if not the greater Atlanta area.

      • http://www.ChristianFaithAtWork.com/ Chris Patton

        Refer to Cyberquill’s comment!

    • http://brandonweldy.wordpress.com Brandon Weldy

      I am convinced it works, I just have not tried it yet myself. I record and then convince myself to not use it. 

  • http://www.thadthoughts.com/ Thad Puckett

    I have only recently begun to work at growing my blog, so I don’t want to jump in to video just yet.  I do, however, have a great friend in Lubbock, whose coaching business is beginning to grow.  He would be great on a simple video, and I am going to suggest this to him.  Thanks for pointing to great tools for growing as blogger/writer/speaker.

    • http://joeandancy.com/ Joe Abraham

      All the best, Thad. This post will really be of help to your friend in Lubbock.

    • http://www.MicheleCushatt.com/ Michele Cushatt

      Because his business is communication and relationship based, video will be especially beneficial for him.

      • http://www.tnealtarver.wordpress.com TNeal

        For a communication’s coach not to use video almost seems like getting marital advice from a priest. It doesn’t mean the advice isn’t good. It’s just not road tested.

  • http://www.ryanhanley.com/2012/01/02/how-my-experiment-in-seo-will-change-the-game-on-small-business-blogging/ Ryan Hanley

    Video is extremely powerful, especially when you are a professional speaker and talking on topics like you do Michael.  Being able to show potential clients your passion and speaking style before they contact you makes it so much easier for them to do so.

    I have used video for a while.  But all the video is very amateur and think that hurts my views a bit.  I don’t think the videos need to be super professional but they can be too amateur…

    Thanks for good article on Video!

    Ryan H.

    • http://joeandancy.com/ Joe Abraham

      Ryan, I agree with what you said about the quality of videos. It must increase along the way for greater effectiveness.

      • http://www.ryanhanley.com/2012/01/02/how-my-experiment-in-seo-will-change-the-game-on-small-business-blogging/ Ryan Hanley

        I agree. I have definitely found that as the professionalism of videos has increased I’ve gotten a little better response.

    • http://brandonweldy.wordpress.com Brandon Weldy

      I am always concerned that mine will be too far off on the too amateur side. 

      • http://www.ryanhanley.com/2012/01/02/how-my-experiment-in-seo-will-change-the-game-on-small-business-blogging/ Ryan Hanley

        Brandon,

        I do think a video with amazing content is going to perform well.  If it’s amateur but your personality is shining through and you’re delivering incredible value then I think you’ll be alright!

        Good luck!

  • Dave Anderson

    If you believe the statistics about communication:

    7% = the words we uses (verbiage)
    38% = Our voice tone and volume
    55% = Our body language and facial expressions

    Then you can see why video is so effective.  Even the best writers cannot completed the communication process because words alone misses 93% of what people use to process communication.

    In the absence of a face to face meeting, the video or something like Skype video for interactions, may be our best/ most complete communication vehicle.

    I’m going to try this.  Thanks for the post.

    • http://joeandancy.com/ Joe Abraham

      Dave, the statistics you provided proves why videos are effective. Thanks for sharing.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Those stats about communication are a great argument in favor of video. Thanks for sharing!

    • http://www.tnealtarver.wordpress.com TNeal

      As a novelist (still working toward publication), I know the adage “show, don’t tell.” Writing well means putting, not words, but images into the reader’s head. “He was angry” tells me how he feels. “His eyes narrowed and his jaw tightened” gives me a picture. Writing now has to take its cues from film-making in order to be effective in the world of fiction.

  • http://www.suttonparks.com Sutton Parks

    Interesting timing.  I just got a quote yesterday to do a video for a 3-5 minute interview for my new book.  The quote was $500.  That is a lot of money for me.  Gary Vaynerchuck talks about using a flip cam and just shooting it.  He said, in his book Crush It, that on some of his videos he doesn’t worry about lighting, etc.  He just puts it out there.  That will be my method until I can move up the chain and get better quality.  

    • http://jeremystatton.com/ Jeremy Statton

      Certainly a professional video looks great, but maybe the rawness of a flip cam helps build trust with your audience. I guess the only way to know for sure is to try. Hope it goes well, Sutton.

      • Rob Sorbo

        The more professional video I watch, the more I see how rawness is being embraced. A few poorly framed or out of focus shots can actually add a lot to video (that said, most of the shots have to be good ones. There’s a fine line between artistic and ugly).

    • Rob Sorbo

      Amateur video editing/producing has come a long way. As good as cameras are these days, you’d be amazed at how much benefit a lamp or an overhead light does for lighting. All you really need to do is film a short sample (5 seconds or less) and watch it–if the lighting is good, then proceed. If not, turn on another light and give it another 5-second shot.

    • http://successbeginstoday.org/wordpress John Richardson

      I’ve had the best results so far using a digital camcorder on a tripod. I turn the viewfinder over so I can see myself on the screen. This lets me know when I’m in the frame or not. My camcorder came with a remote, so I can start, stop, and zoom slowly in without having to have someone else in the room. A huge timesaver. The only drawback is that the camera outputs in AVCHD, which needs to be converted to work in iMovie.

    • http://joeandancy.com/ Joe Abraham

      All the best, Sutton! To do something is better than doing nothing. 

    • Rachel Lance

      Facebook, blogs, Gary V., and the like have really changed people’s expectations of video presentation. Less produced videos are definitely more accepted today and are often seen as more authentic. It’s not as hard as you might think to put out a great looking piece on your own. Good luck!

    • http://www.tnealtarver.wordpress.com TNeal

      You start where you are. The fact that you’re willing to begin with a step most of us can take encourages me to consider similar steps. Thanks for sharing–Tom

      • http://www.suttonparks.com Sutton Parks

        Thanks for the encouragement.  I went and made a video yesterday and posted it.  I think it turned out pretty good.  I used a Kodak Easyshare Camera and for audio I used a $100 M-audio mic fed into Garageband.  Then I used IMovie to put it together.  

    • http://brandonweldy.wordpress.com Brandon Weldy

      This is where I am. I like the line “the best camera is the one you will use.” I need to start using my digital video camera before I go off and purchase a bunch of equipment I may never use!

      • http://www.comprehensivemedia.com/ Joel W. Smith

        Brandon,

        You’re absolutely right.  Get an inexpensive mic from Radio Shack – that will help a lot as well.

        • http://brandonweldy.wordpress.com Brandon Weldy

          Thanks for the tip. I had not thought about that!

  • http://joeandancy.com/ Joe Abraham

    Good info! Thanks Michael. I did watch some of your videos recently. Real good!

    I am working on bringing short teaching videos through YouTube. I have already posted some ‘test clips’. Here’s is one I did sometime back: http://joeandancy.com/2012/01/23/god-evidence/. Surely I must put more effort to improve in this area. This post gives me sufficient boost to go for it!

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      That is very good, Joe. You should definitely keep doing it. I immediately connected!

      • http://joeandancy.com/ Joe Abraham

        Thanks. I will!

    • Anonymous

      Joe, I felt your sincerity through your video. You had great things to say, and I will remember and use these 3 items when sharing Christ with others. Thank you!

      A confession: I fast forwarded to get to your 3rd point. Your presentation might be a little long for video, but perfect for an in-person quick lesson.

      (Only an opinion from someone who should be working instead of being online and who also is avoiding doing her own video!!)

      • http://joeandancy.com/ Joe Abraham

        Glad to know that the video was a blessing to you. Thanks for your kind words!

        Yes, I am working on for short videos. Your opinion is valid!

    • http://brandonweldy.wordpress.com Brandon Weldy

      I have watched the video to the side of your blog before. I really enjoyed it. 

      • http://joeandancy.com/ Joe Abraham

        Thanks, Brandon! I am preparing to bring out more.

        • http://brandonweldy.wordpress.com Brandon Weldy

          Looking forward to it!

  • http://leadershipandproductivity.com/ Kenneth Acha

    Great Post!. I think agree video is the way to go. A couple of weeks ago, I started working on a medical video project myself. I noticed that many patients don’t read the medical information packages that they receive when they leave the hospital or clinic. Working on launching a site in the next couple of months that will answer basic questions that parents often have in raising their children. I hope to do thousands of videos myself in pediatrics in the next 5-7 years. I think many people will watch a video who will not read an article, especially a medical one.

    I’m actually still looking for a name for this project, so if you read this post and have a suggestion, that may be awesome.

    • http://joeandancy.com/ Joe Abraham

      That’s a great idea! If you could promote it well, it can help many parents world-wide.

  • http://wordsofwilliams.com/ Eric Williams

    You have impeccable timing. We are about to launch our first eBook on Thursday and now I think I might have to make a video promotion for it.

    I did thoroughly enjoy your video for the Life Plan, but didn’t give it too much thought when it came to launching my own eBook.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      You should definitely do it. Also check out this example from Brendon Burchard.

      • http://wordsofwilliams.com/ Eric Williams

         I went for a short version, but I did it! Launching our first eBook today. Thanks for the nudge!

        • http://www.MicheleCushatt.com/ Michele Cushatt

          Yay! Way to go, Eric.

    • http://joeandancy.com/ Joe Abraham

      All the best, Eric! 

    • http://brandonweldy.wordpress.com Brandon Weldy

      After reading Michael’s post today I started thinking about using a video to promote my first ebook. 

  • http://successbeginstoday.org/wordpress John Richardson

    As a speaker, doing video clips has been tough to say the least. Talking to a camera is not the same thing as talking to an audience. You get no feedback and the camera provides no energy like a good audience would. Then there is the lighting, sound, and  editing problems.
    However, I’m learning that good video doesn’t happen overnight. Just like speaking, creating a good video takes practice, experimentation, and more practice. I just did a video post yesterday about a new grill. (http://goals4u.us/xNQGDe) I shot it in my kitchen and edited it with iMovie. Overall it is much better than my previous tries and I’m realizing that I now need to look at teleprompter software so I can smooth out my audio and add power and inflection to the presentation.My next project is a video promoting my new ebook. Your stats are very encouraging, Michael. I do have a local video company that has been running a special. Maybe this is what I need for the book. Thanks for sharing your experiences.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      One of the thing I have been learning in my speaking is that my energy is not dependent on the audience. I used to use this as an excuse. But I have learned that I can bring just as much energy if they don’t cooperate—initially. I also have a much better chance of energizing them if I do so.
      This makes video the ideal practice medium, since, as you pointed out, you don’t have the benefit of an audience. Tony Robbins is great at this.
      The video you shout about the grill is the best I have seen from you. Excellent!

      • http://successbeginstoday.org/wordpress John Richardson

        Thanks Michael. I’m learning to derive energy from the red light on the camera. When it’s on, I’m on. A couple of tips that I picked up recently have helped me feel more comfortable on camera. One is to wear darker colors. They thin you out. The other is to use natural light where possible. When I was shooting in the kitchen, I got better results from turning off the kitchen overhead lights and just use the sunlight coming in the windows. 

        For guys who are follicly challenged (bald) like me, lowering the camera angle and using natural light will help keep your head from reflecting light. This also helps with glasses or other reflective items. 

        • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

          Another thing I want to do is completely lose the teleprompter. It feels more awkward, but I think it will come off as more authentic. Thanks.

          • Anonymous

            Totally agree Mike. There’s a reason that Brian Williams earns several million dollars a year. Effective use of a teleprompter is a whole ‘nother skill set. I write down 2-3 key points before I hit record and ROLL. Talk to the lens and the viewer feels it.

            1 take. always.

          • http://joeandancy.com/ Joe Abraham

            I agree with that! Though using a teleprompter helps with the content, not using it refines the presentation.

          • http://successbeginstoday.org/wordpress John Richardson

            It certainly does in speaking. It will take more practice, but the results will probably be worth it.

      • http://joeandancy.com/ Joe Abraham

        “my energy is not dependent on the audience” – that’s something all of us who are communicators must understand and apply. It can completely change the way we communicate!

    • http://joeandancy.com/ Joe Abraham

      Watched your video, John. Good! 

      Visualizing that we are talking to an attentive audience increases our confidence level and provides better body language as we do videos. 

  • http://twitter.com/tryingtobless Lori Walsh Kempton

    I keep hearing that video is so important, but I do struggle with how I look on video.  Thanks for the reminder as I think just as I overcame my struggle of telling the world my story in my book; I now must find a way to overcome my awkwardness on video!  Watch out world, here I come!

    • Rachel Lance

      I think you’d find a lot of people feel the same about watching themselves on video. I’ve seen several popular personalities say they never watch footage of themselves. My thinking is this is just one of those things you have to “fake it til you make it”- don’t let that awkwardness keep you from doing something really cool!

      • http://joeandancy.com/ Joe Abraham

        I agree, Rachel. This is not a serious problem as it appears to be. The smart solution is to DO IT, DO IT and DO IT!

    • http://joeandancy.com/ Joe Abraham

      Lori, you can overcome!

  • http://www.facebook.com/gingerschell Ginger Hohn Schell

    Thank you so much for posting this, Mike! I’ve thought about using video on my site many times, but I felt like I was shooting in the dark when looking for a reputable company to help me. 

  • Rob Sorbo

    I’m glad you’ve had success with video. 

    Personally, I prefer not having video. I seldom watch any of the videos you post on your blog (only after I’ve read the post and I decide that I need to watch the video to understand the content better). I generally read my blogs on breaks at work, so adding video to it is a hassle.

    However, I do agree that when I’m looking to buy something or invest in something, I always take time to watch videos (especially tech review videos for my gadgets).

    • http://joeandancy.com/ Joe Abraham

      Rob, as you mentioned, videos help us evaluate the efficiency and quality of products. That’s a great reason to do videos!

  • http://www.enmast.com/ Brad Farris

    We are using A LOT more video in our work too. Simple flip camera shots, edited on iMovie by an intern from our local arts college. The production value is low, but they help people to get to know us before they’ve taken the risk to pick up the phone and call.

    If you are on the web, you need video…

    Brad 

    • http://joeandancy.com/ Joe Abraham

      Yes, Brad. Videos are kind of way-makers!

  • http://lisadelay.com/ Lisa Colon DeLay

    The timing is unbelievable here. I started doing video interviews, and my blog hits doubled in 3 weeks. About a week ago, I began to offer this as a promotion tool. So for $61 people send out their message not nothing else can. It’s a terrific value.

  • Anonymous

    Gary V rocked my world and challenged me with “Crush it”. Shortly after, I launched http://www.coachbillhart, my brand, and my Vlog. As we have discussed Mike, this has been a GAME-CHANGER for me.

    I tell audiences that it’s the “I feel like I know you” factor. When we see a local newscaster, for example, we feee like we know them because we have seen them, being themselves on video.

    I could go on and on, but I have speaking demos there, my audio subscription is there and it is, in short – my destination for my brand.

    (Now I just need to list to Coach Mike, and post more frequently)

    Onward!

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      I love your videos, Bill. You do a GREAT job. Now … post most more frequently. (Is there an echo in here?!)

      • Anonymous

        Thanks coach – will do!

        • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

          I totally agree with one take. If you don’t, you start obsessing. Don’t ask me how I know this!
          By the way, you should write a guest post for me on what you have learned about video blogging. My audience would love it!

          • Anonymous

            My goal is to be REAL, not perfect. (good thing, huh?)

            It would be a pleasure Mike. Hitting the road today, but will do so shortly. Maybe I can help a few folks step over the rocks I’ve tripped over along the way…

          • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

            I think that is an important distinction. Make sure that gets in the post!
            No rush.

          • http://www.comprehensivemedia.com/ Joel W. Smith

            GREAT point Bill!

          • http://www.kellycombs.com/ Kelly Combs

            One take is great…sometimes. And sometimes it just takes 2. Here is a 12 second out-take of a Vlog I was doing on Christian meditation.  Sometimes you just have to start over.  
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GYsDTqr2QfM 

            (It’s good to be able to laugh at yourself.)

          • http://www.ChristianFaithAtWork.com/ Chris Patton

            I need one of these prescriptions for my wife…where do I get them?

          • http://www.kellycombs.com/ Kelly Combs

            The Great Physician, of course.

          • http://www.ChristianFaithAtWork.com/ Chris Patton

            Duh! Of course!

            Chris Patton

          • http://TillerFamily.org/ John Tiller

            I just about fell out of my chair while watching that, Kelly!  It was hilarious!  Be sure to keep that for an out-takes reel.  

            You’re absolutely right that it’s good to be able to laugh at yourself.  You’ll connect with more people when they see that you are human too!

          • http://www.kellycombs.com/ Kelly Combs

            It is humbling to let people see your faux pas, but it was funny so I couldn’t resist.

          • Jim Martin

            Kelly, this is great.  Thanks for sharing this video.  I think I liked it so much because I have plenty of short videos where I had the same kind of awkward moment.

          • http://www.ChristianFaithAtWork.com/ Chris Patton

            I have to admit, Kelly is right about this one…

  • http://www.lincolnparks.com Lincoln Parks

    I absolutely love video for my blog posts and my business. It does not matter how good or bad you are it’s the message that counts. I love video for getting your message out there.

    • http://brandonweldy.wordpress.com Brandon Weldy

      I need to keep reminding myself that it will not be perfect the first time and that is okay!

  • Anonymous

    Video is the best medium.  I have been using video to share important points about God’s truth.

    -Ryan

    ExclamationPoints.com

  • http://twitter.com/JaysonFeltner Jayson Feltner

    In any business, getting in front of the customer is paramount.  They need to not only like the product or service you’re selling but also who they’re buying it from.  I have made several videos for my manufacturing business but never considered it for my blog!  I can’t believe it.  I’m glad Joel is offering a discount.   I will have to check it out.

    • Jim Martin

      Jayson, I read your first sentence again.  “In any business, getting in front of the customer is paramount.”  I read this thinking about my lack of video usage on my blog.  Maybe this would be more helpful to my readers than I thought.

  • http://www.cheriblogs.info Cheri Gregory

    My experience thus far has been to responsibly videotape my last three seminars…and irresponsibly let them sit and gather dust. My current excuse is that I need to clear off space on my hard drive before transferring them and editing them. (My previous excuse — didn’t have the right transfer adapter — was solved, via express mail, two months ago!)

    The original plan was to look for just a few short clips for my website and YouTube. The current plan seems to be to avoid all the learning that awaits me.Like many who have commented, I don’t like the way I look on camera. But it goes beyond that. I’m avoiding the inevitable barrage of self-criticism: “You said WHAT?!? You played with your hair HOW many times?”

    My audiences already saw everything I’m avoiding watching. Their feedback was positive, despite my imperfections and errors. I need to schedule time to just get the initial viewings — and lists of improvements — done and over with. Then I can start the learning process of re-viewing the videos, focusing this time on my presentation strengths so I can build on them.

    • http://www.comprehensivemedia.com/ Joel W. Smith

      Cheri,

      You’re headed in the right direction.  Try having someone transcribe your seminars.  Then you can watch and read – which is easier to find sound-bytes for a future post.

      • http://www.cheriblogs.info Cheri Gregory

        Joel –

        Thanks for the idea! I hadn’t thought about transcription. That would help me depersonalize the content so I can approach the videos with more objectivity.

        • http://www.comprehensivemedia.com/ Joel W. Smith

          Cheri,

          Glad to help.  It’s a huge help to us.

  • http://www.sundijo.com Sundi Jo Graham

    I just signed my first book deal and plan to make various videos throughout the publishing process. 

    Your idea for Creating a Personal Life Plan just gave me some ideas for my first eBook on weight loss. 

    Question: Who designed the Michael Hyatt video introduction for your videos? You’re branding yourself so well – truly impressed. 

    • http://www.comprehensivemedia.com/ Joel W. Smith

      Sundi,

      If you’re talking about Michael’s LifePlan video, SimplyVideo produced that one.

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Actually, the video intro and outro was done by Duarte Design (Nancy Duarte’s company). Thanks!

  • http://deuceology.wordpress.com Larry Carter

    I have considered using video on my blog, but haven’t pulled the trigger.  My friend, Jon, below did earlier and I enjoyed it.

    • Jim Martin

      Larry, I have considered the same but have not done it yet.  I think I perceive this to be more difficult than it is.  Do you have a sense for why you haven’t pulled the trigger yet?

      • http://deuceology.wordpress.com Larry Carter

        I’m not nearly as tech savvy as I like to think I am. I actually just realized that I could even do it.

  • http://www.irunurun.com/blog/ Travis Dommert

    So putting the last 2 days together, would love to see a video of you and the guys tackling that last 12 foot wall challenge.  Sounds like it was tough!

    • http://TillerFamily.org/ John Tiller

      That would be a great video!

  • http://twitter.com/dennisbrooke Dennis Brooke

    Easy and effective is right on the mark. Our Seattle area writers group has videotaped devotionals and short teaching sessions using a basic hand held cam. One of our members wound up getting a keynote speaking gig for a retreat even though the quality of the video is less than studio quality.
    We post them to Youtube and then link from there to a summary on our blog. All free. See http://nwchristianwriters.wordpress.com/ for examples.

    • Jim Martin

      Dennis, thanks for the confirmation that it is possible to be effective with this without it being overly difficult.  That is encouraging.

  • Anonymous

    I am still stuck in the thought that video takes to long to load and too long for blog readers to watch. After all, haven’t we been taught that people only skim headlines?

    Sounds like I am making excuses, right? Yeppers. I make funny faces when I talk, don’t want to learn to use the video feature on my camera, don’t want to figure out what to say, fix my hair, find a place to set up, practice, learn to edit. I just want to draw and paint. 

    Maybe Jesus will come back soon and I won’t have to pursue this video thing.

    • Rachel Lance

      Dive in! It really is a great way to connect with your audience & it’s not as hard as you might think to make a good looking piece with hardware & software right at your fingertips. 

  • http://brandonweldy.wordpress.com Brandon Weldy

    While I have not used video yet, I have been considering it a lot more. I know that Carrie Wilkerson used video along with her book. It made it more personal. As I continued to read the book I could hear her saying the words and it just seemed more real. She also made references to Ask Mr. Video. As I watched the two of them I started to love the idea more. I can see how I have been affected by the use of video and it is powerful.

    • http://www.jmlalonde.com Joe Lalonde

      It’s interesting the effect of hearing or seeing someone speak and then reading their book has on the way you read it. The same thing happens whenever I read Zig Ziglar. It’s like I can hear his voice.

      • Jim Martin

        Joe, I had not thought about this but you are right.  It is very interesting to hear someone’s voice and then read their book.  As you say, it probably does have an effect on the way we read the book.

        • http://www.jmlalonde.com Joe Lalonde

          Jim, I know when I read Zig his books become more conversational in the way that I read. I almost respond to passages with a vocal question but then catch myself. This way of reading is much more enjoyable for me.

      • http://brandonweldy.wordpress.com Brandon Weldy

        It always sounds a lot more interesting than listening to my voice read it. I get enough of me during the day, it is nice to listen to someone else’s voice read.

        • http://www.jmlalonde.com Joe Lalonde

          Right on Brandon. If I can’t hear a voice and have to use my own, the book tends to drag on and I have trouble concentrating.

  • http://www.wendybelloblog.com/ Wendy Bello

    I’ve been using video on my blog since October and it has made a great difference.

    • http://www.MicheleCushatt.com/ Michele Cushatt

      How so, Wendy? What kind of results have you seen?

  • http://www.anchorapologetics.com/ MVWalker

    Michael,

    I’m a subscriber to your blog, and I am currently working with NewCoast Media is setting up my branding for my ministry, Anchor Apologetics. I want to be able to connect with my audience via email in the same way as you do with your branding/email template style that has your current blog post for your subscribers. Is there a company that I might contact in order to achieve this? I’ve had a hard time finding anything like this, so any help would be very much appreciated!

    • Rachel Lance

      My organization has had great experience with Mail Chimp and I know others who use Constant Contact really like it. They both make large scale emailing really accessible with great interfaces, ready-made templates, etc.  Mail Chimp, in particular, does a fairly good job of putting out an educational blog and videos to help users become more proficient with email campaigns.
      Good luck!

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      I used MailChimp, but hired a designer to do the template. It was pretty simple. Any web designer should be able to do it. Thanks.

  • Anonymous

    Michael, I want to be able to afford this “inexpensive” approach, but for now it’s me a few friends and my flip camera.  It’s a start.

    http://www.youtube.com/user/paulawhidden

    • http://www.MicheleCushatt.com/ Michele Cushatt

      It’s a GREAT start, Paula. Many people don’t do anything unless it can be “perfect.” I think it’s better to do something, and improve it as you go, rather than waiting for all the stars ‹ and finances ‹ to align.

      • Anonymous

        Thanks Michele, I wish they could look better, but we’ll figure it out if we keep trying.

  • http://talesofwork.com kimanzi constable

    I don’t know yet, I do have a welcome video on my website: talesofwork.com
     (I hate how I sound?)

    • http://www.jmlalonde.com Joe Lalonde

      I think hearing and seeing ourselves in a video is uncomfortable for most people. I think with constant positive reinforcement it gets better.

      • http://talesofwork.com kimanzi constable

        You’re totally right!

  • http://www.kellycombs.com/ Kelly Combs

    I knew video was big when books started having video trailers.  A video…for a book. Oxymoronic. 

     I actually love interesting and funny video ads. (Like the new Ferris Bueller commerical for Honda!) And the best author video I’ve ever seen is this one, 
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ZoJ5OKmEJY, by Parnell Hall.I don’t like video blogs when shot by a webcam, and the speaker is looking at the screen instead of the camera lens. I think the off-kilter eye contact is sketchy, and I just don’t like them.

    • http://TillerFamily.org/ John Tiller

      Kelly, that vid is funny … or maybe a little scary :)

  • http://bentheredothat.com Ben Patterson

    Why do you prefer vimeo to youtube?

    • http://www.jmlalonde.com Joe Lalonde

      Michael talked about this a couple of months back on his Build a Better Speaking Page post – http://michaelhyatt.com/how-to-build-a-better-speaking-page-part-1.html

      According to Michael, Vimeo has many more options, including the ability to use a minimalist video player and custom thumbnail image.

      • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

        In addition, you can add a clickable link in the video at the end. Thanks.

  • http://www.charlesspecht.com/ Charles Specht

    Yes, I’m convinced that video is the key to garnering new readers.  I plan to do this in the very near future on my blog.

    • http://www.jmlalonde.com Joe Lalonde

      I’ve yet to use video and I’m unsure of when I will. But one benefit I think you gain from video is longer page view times. The increased time on your page increases the chances of purchasing or further engagement.

      • http://www.charlesspecht.com/ Charles Specht

        A few months back ChurchMag had an article about using the iPhone camera to record HD video, and their advice was to use the headphones for the microphone.  Apparently, the mic in the headphones does a great job to drown out external noise, etc.  It’s what I plan to start with when I give it a shot.

  • http://www.jmlalonde.com Joe Lalonde

    I have not used video to promote a product or in addition to my blog. Though a couple of months ago I created a short video for a review I intended on doing. Speaking into the camera was difficult and I found myself stuttering or getting flustered. I’ve canned the video for now but may resurrect the idea one day.

  • Scott

    Hello Michael
    A friend pointed me to your tweet and site. Incredible. Thank you for the time you give to this and details you share.
    I’m FT on staff w my church. Sixty years old w deep history in audio & video.
    I was particularly interested in this post.

    If you would please comment on the power of video in “selling”, promoting ministries, opportunities is servie, i.e. volunteers, Bible studies etc in the church.
    Thank you
    Scott Chism
    Dir Facilities & Operstions

    • http://TillerFamily.org/ John Tiller

      Hi Scott, video has been a critical element in communications at my church.   We have 1-2 videos during just about every Sunday service for all kinds of reasons including promotions of all areas you mention above and, of course, for teaching.  

      Michael’s quote above … “if a picture is worth a thousand words, a video is worth ten thousand” definitely applies to church promotion.     

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Thanks, Scott. Welcome.

      Video is a terrific way to “show” rather than “tell.” You can help people see how your ministry works and the impact it is having on people. Video gives people the opportunity to see what you are doing rather than just hearing about it.
      Hope that helps. Thanks.

  • http://darensirbough.com/ Daren Sirbough

    I’m considering making a video to introduce myself as a teacher to my Facebook and twitter friends. I don’t have the budget to use something like ‘simply video’ but I can still apply the same principles. One day though I’m sure I will be using their services.

    • http://TillerFamily.org/ John Tiller

      Hey Daren, congrats on getting off the starting blocks with video!

      • http://darensirbough.com/ Daren Sirbough

        Thanks John!

  • http://switchvideo.com/ Andrew Angus

    Over the past 3 years my company has produced more then 250 animated videos for our clients to help them explain what they do. We have learned a lot doing this. 

    I would break up what we have learned into three main areas. 

    1. The Brain Science behind video
    2. The importance of script writing and what to focus on.
    3.  The power of video to increase conversions. 

    1. The Brain Science behind video.

    People generally believe that video is a more effective way to communicate online but what does the brain science say. We did some research and learned that if you stimulate both the auditory and the visual sense you increase retention. The research shows an increase in retention of 58%! This is dual coding theory was developed by Allan Paivio at the University of Western Ontario. 

    2. The importance of script writing and what to focus on.

    Discovery and script writing is the most important part of the process. The major take home message is to NOT focus on your feature set but to focus on the problem you solve. You want to speak to your viewers emotions and show that you also feel their pain and have come up with a solution. 

    3.  The power of video to increase conversions. 

    Michael shared the success he had using video to increase the size of his list. This is not uncommon. Take Rypple. The video on their website increased their conversions by 20%. 

    The video for Rypple actually brings all three points together. You can watch the video at www.Rypple.com 

    If you every have any questions about how you can use video to meet your objectives please drop me a line on Clarity. I’d be happy to share what I can from our experience. 

    https://clarity.fm/#/andrewangus

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      This is fascinating. Thanks for sharing. I especially like brain science part.

  • http://rise365.com Claudia Good

    Video has been a super tool to stretch my husband and I and grow our blog! Had no idea the impact it would have!
    Thanks for continuing to push us to new levels Michael! 
    Blessings  

  • Deena Safari

    I couldn’t agree more! I’m pretty much nobody, but when I started blogging 6 months ago, my readership more than tripled. I think video just adds that crucial layer people want when they’re interested in who you are.

  • Deena Safari

    I meant “vlogging” LOL! Going to sleep now…

  • http://www.ColdSoresBegone.com/ RobinBarr

    I have filmed my own video for blogs and for a column I write in my town’s community online newspaper. I love working with it. So I watched your video, Michael, both as a consumer and as someone who uses video for business. I thought your video was simple, engaging, interesting, just fan-tastic!  A couple of wks ago, I downloaded your Life Plan book. Watching your video, I’m now actually inspired to read it :).  And work with it.  And I’m so glad to know about Simply Video.  A great option.  I hope he extends a discount to your readers again, since I’m not ready to do so by current deadline date.

    • http://www.comprehensivemedia.com/ Joel W. Smith

      Robin,

      When the time is right for you, mention this post and I bet  SimplyVideo will take care of you!

    • http://michaelhyatt.com Michael Hyatt

      Thanks, Robin. I appreciate your kind words. You might go ahead and get a quote from SimplyVideo. I don’t think you have to shoot it by February 15th.

  • http://somewiseguy.com ThatGuyKC

    I couldn’t agree with you more. I’ve incorporated video into my blog on occasion and it always proves to drive traffic. While I want to work on the quality and editing the ability to see and hear the creator of content you’re interested in creates a deeper bond with the reader/viewer.

  • TheShef

    Michael,
    Video is a huge game-changer for me. One of the things that my event planners love is a customized “Hello…looking forward to meeting you at the conference” videos to send out to their list. Even if the event is a private event or a mandatory meeting, video starts the sizzle for the event. There are a few guidelines that I find useful:
    1. Video should be no longer than 75 seconds.
    2. Invite the viewer to send you a note regarding their challenges or what they love most about what they do. The key is dialog.
    3. Hit 2-3 bullet points that they will take away from your program.

    The added benefit for you the speaker is that they know who you are when you walk into the room and you have begun to build your brand as well.
     

  • http://jalandajames.com/ Jalanda, NYC Videographer

    This is one of the best testimonials to why use video. I’m a bit bias because I’m a videographer in NYC. I specialize in helping small business owners share their story and build their brand. 

    The biggest problem I see with small business owners and video is that they think professional video is only for the big time experts. Small business owners think they can do their own video themselves. While they wouldn’t cut their own hair and go out networking, they do shoot their own video and go networking. 

    While, I don’t think all small business owners video should be professional I do believe some “showcase” pieces should. It’s about image right. 

    Thanks for sharing your experience with video. Video helps others to know you better, no matter what the quality. It’s the quality that makes you stand out and look like an expert.

  • Ceceinlasvegas

    I use the power of video to communicate with my own business and personally with overseas business partners. I use videomails, videosnewsletters & videoconferencing to retain clients and grow my business. I was introduce to talkfusion about a few years back and having a platform without being a geek impressed everyone!

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