Product Review

    By Jefferson Graham

    According to the market tracker Ad-ology Research, 45 percent of small businesses plan to get way more involved with online video in 2012 — and even more so in future years. And why not? A website shines when it features a greeting from the owner, testimonials from customers, demonstrations of what's for sale, and the like.

    You have the opportunity to talk directly to both your existing customer base, and thousands of potential would-be customers, with straight chatter. Without the filter of a TV station, newspaper, or magazine, you can tell them directly who you are, what you are about, and why you do what you do. The possibilities are endless.

    Jefferson Graham, host of USA Today's "Talking Tech" and "Talking Your Tech," skillfully takes small business owners through the art of video creation and distribution in his new book VIDEO NATION (Peachpit, July 2012). You'll learn what equipment you need to get started — from bare bones to the wish list state-of-the-art great. You'll get the skinny on sound and lighting. You'll learn how to properly set up for and shoot an interview. You'll even get to take your video to the next level by using multiple cameras as they do on TV.

    In VIDEO NATION, you’ll find:
            - Affordable promotional ideas: After all, YouTube is one of the most popular outlets in the world — and it's free!

            - Effective content approaches: Background details on how you were founded, long-term thinking, and showing viewers the office are all ideas that Jefferson approves of.

            - What content to avoid: Don't make it a direct ad. This will inherently turn viewers off. Instead, sell subtly and find unique ways to highlight the real star —the product.

            - Ideas for a variety of companies: From gardening to banking to food to real estate to furniture, Jefferson covers the gamut on how to produce entertaining and effective video content. HBM

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