There are many video websites (YouTube is the most prominent) that will let you make and share your own videos with their visitors. This fact has significant marketing potential. Even beginning marketers can take advantage of this opportunity because several download sites are free, not just for viewers, but also for creators.

Before creating your next online video, think through the process from start to finish so you will know what type of equipment you will need, what scripts you may need to write, and how to get the most viewers so you can get the best payback for your time, money and effort.

Step 1: Plan out what to say and do on your video. You don’t want to be a victim of stage fright when the camera is rolling. A word-for-word script may not be the best idea, but at least outline the content, so you won’t forget when the time comes.

Step 2: Shoot the video. There is a wide variety of equipment to choose from. Including:
• camcorders,
• webcams,
• cell phones, and
• digital cameras.

They all have been used for online videos. And, in the past, they have each had reasonable success.

However, standards are rising. People are expecting a more professional-looking video. HD videos are becoming more wide-spread online.

So look into getting a better camera than you might have chosen five years ago; it will pay off in terms of views and likes. A mid-range camcorder or webcam may be your best choice.

High-end cell phones and digital cameras will work, but many only provide you with a limited amount of recording time. In addition to a limited amount of time, not all digital cameras and cell phones will record sounds, which leads to the hassle of adding a soundtrack after creating the video.

Step 3: Once you have created your video, you will need to find a way to get it from the camera to your computer so you can upload it to the web.

As in most technical tasks, it pays to read the instructions that come with your camera. They will likely give you a step-by-step process to upload from camera to computer.

The higher end equipment will probably come with the cables needed to do the upload. If yours doesn’t, you can buy what you need at many online sites.

Step 4: You will likely want to edit your video to make it more concise and perhaps adding a title slide or music. That will require software. Most recent computers already include video creation software that will let you do the needed editing.

This editing may also include deleting scenes, adding captions, and adding a closing “Call to Action” slide. Once you have made all of your edits, save your video for uploading to the web

If your computer doesn’t already have the needed software, there are both free and paid solutions available online. Just google “video software”. You can also get the software you need from a wide variety of retail stores.

Step 5: The final step to making your online movie is to choose an online video website that you can upload your video to. YouTube and Google Video are certainly choices, and they have advantages.

In addition, you can find more sites by using an internet search. But, if you upload to more than one site, it is wise to make small changes in the video so each is unique. That should give you more backlink power in the search rankings. The process for the many download sites is similar, but usually with a few variations that you will need to accommodate.

You’re done with making your video available. But don’t stop yet. It would be smart to tell people about your video so they will check it out. Email is good, but mentioning it on your website, on Facebook, in forums, etc. is even better for increasing your viewership. When you take these steps, SEO can help in a big way because the social sites and your own site provide links to your videos, increasing their own power as links to the site you are promoting.

Good luck with your video marketing plans.

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