Five Ideas for Creating a Professional Backdrop for Your Live Videos

Five Ideas for Creating a Professional Backdrop for Your Live Videos

One of the main issues with creating video – either live or prerecorded – is what to use as a backdrop so your videos look professional. You could, of course, go outside but this poses various issues, such as an appropriate background, lightning, noises in the background, people walking past, and so on.

Videotaping in your house, however, can pose a different set of problems – such as finding a tidy, uncluttered room with good lighting and acoustics. If you are a work-at-home parent, the last thing you want is a house that looks like a bomb hit it and screaming children in the background.

So, what can you do to hide the flaws in your home so you can film attractive videos without it costing a lot of money?

1. Get Organized

You’re a business owner now. There should be a place for everything, and everything in its place. Get a helper to tackle your filing while you de-clutter the room and desk.

2. Face the Camera Correctly

It should capture you and anything you want in the background, such as a whiteboard and easel with a notepad. You can write on these prior to your video so you donít turn your back on the camera. Otherwise, position the camera so the most attractive and neatest part of the room is behind you. Don’t have a window behind you, as it will cast you into shadow.

3. Cover the Flaws in Your Home “Office”

Even if you are using your bedroom or the kitchen as your “office,” as long as it is neat and tidy with a background that is not too busy-looking (such as with lots of floral wallpaper and so on), you should be able to pick the best angle for the camera and yourself so the video looks reasonably professional.

4. Stage Your Office

In the same way that people selling their home “stage” it, i.e. make it look their best by arranging the furniture in various ways and de-cluttering everything, you can stage your office so it looks impressive and a real hive of activity. Just make sure nothing on the walls, whiteboard or bulletin board is proprietary information you wouldn’t want your competitors to see.

5. Go for the Big Screen

For less than $55, you could buy a couple of portable non-woven video screen options that will cover a multitude of sins no matter where you are filming indoors. The Slow Dolphin 6.5 x 10 foot Photography Photo Video Studio Backdrop Background Kit comes with a white screen, a black screen, a stand, clips to hold the fabric or attach things to it, and a carry bag that means you can take the kit with you anywhere. It rolls up small into the duffle bag, and the entire kit weighs in at a little over 9 pounds, so it is highly portable.

Set up the sturdy aluminum frame in front of the area you want to hide. Choose the white or black screen and attach it to the frame. Set your lighting in front of you and to the sides, depending on how many lights you have, and do a trial run. Check the top, bottom, and sides of the video frame to make sure nothing is peeking out from behind the backdrop. Zoom the camera in closer if there is anything showing that shouldn’t.

Get your home office tidy and buy a video screen kit, and you will have numerous options for areas where you can film right in your own home.


Customer Retention: Speak Their Language

Customer Retention: Speak Their Language

Customer retention should be a primary focus for all online businesses. Unfortunately, many online marketers overlook this important activity in an endless quest for more traffic and new customers.

But the truth is that an existing customer is more likely to be your best buyer. In fact, studies have shown that 80% of your sales will come from 20% of your customers. So how do you retain those happy 20% and make them feel valued? The answer is by speaking their language – that is, understanding their needs in relation to your niche or industry so that they feel understood, not just talked at or to.

Brand Loyalty

Many businesses sign people up for email lists and loyalty programs, but rarely follow up as much as they should. This is a shame because they really do want to hear from you – if your messaging is relevant to them. Creating high-quality information and great offers that make them feel valued can stimulate sales more than thousands of automated social media messages cranked out by a bot.

Branding as a Shortcut

Buying by the brand is a shortcut for a lot of people, an almost automatic purchase that they think very little about and are not usually too price sensitive about. They know what they want and they will pay to get it. This is because they have tried other brands but prefer, for example, Hellmannís mayo to Miracle Whip and would never consider buying any other brand. It is, of course, a matter of personal taste.

It can be difficult to get people to buy a different brand. This is why the Sunday papers are full of coupons, to try to get people to buy something new. The coupon lowers the price and makes the purchase less of a risk.

The Emotional Connection

But people also have an emotional connection to brands. Emotions enter into purchasing decisions a lot more than most marketers might think. Studies have shown that consumers buy based on emotion, and then try to justify their choice with logic, not the other way around.

Choice Support

The emotions that caused a person to buy in the first place can keep them coming back for more, a phenomenon known as choice support. It triggers people to become repeat customers because once they have purchased from you, they will continue to do so to “prove” they made the right choice in the first place. If your marketing messages reinforce their choice support by speaking their language, you can retain your customers easily.

Knowing their “pain points,” that is, what they struggle with most in relation to your niche, helps them feel understood, and as if your products are really designed for them (which they should be). Asking for feedback such as reviews, testimonials and survey response will reinforce the idea that you care. Them seeing their reviews posted, or your new product being the one they voted as their first choice in your survey, would also indicate that youíre speaking the same language.

Showing the Customer They Are Valued

Email marketing list subscribers should be treated like the valuable customers and prospects they are. Reward them for being on your list with various items that show you care, including:

* Surprise gifts
* Perks like exclusive members-only content, discounts and offers
* Invitations to create user-generated content, such as guest blogging
* Great bonus items with each package, which can be sent a day or two after their purchase
* Responsive customer service
* A detailed FAQ page
* Access to you personally, such as on webinars or in a closed Facebook group

All of these will strongly influence your customers to be loyal to you because they create the perception that you care about them.


7 Important SSL Facts Every Business Owner Should Know

Have you ever wondered about what’s going on behind the scenes of your own company’s website?

When you run a business, online presence is a must. There’s no way you can outshine your competition if your small company doesn’t have a website.

But your website also needs to be secure! And a long and strong password to access your data isn’t quite the definition of security.

Installing an SSL certificate though, can guarantee your website is safe. You can safely showcase your products and services, without worrying your sensitive data is being accessed by someone you didn’t authorize!

Today, a beautiful graphic design and a well optimized website aren’t enough to guarantee your clients will trust your brand. You need to do whatever you can to ensure your customers both like and trust you as a business.

In case you were wondering why SSL certificates are highly recommended, take a look at the following 7 important facts every business owner needs to know.

1. SSL certificates offer a higher level of security

An SSL certificate acts as a shield.

In fancy terms, a Secure Sockets Layer certificate allows the transfer protocol to create a security layer to add end-to-end encryption. But in other, and much simple words, SSL certificates simply ensure the data you share between your visitor’s browser and your own server stays secure.

With the online becoming more dangerous with every passing day, reassuring your visitors they’re browsing your actual, real website is important.

2. When your website is SSL protected, your clients will trust you more

Once your visitors feel safe to use your website to their advantage, they will immediately feel more comfortable and secure to share their personal information with you.

This is important for you, as a business. Whether your users feel safe to buy your products or simply agree to leave you their email, you’ve managed to create a bond between them and your company.

When growing your business is a priority, gaining the trust of your visitors is the number 1 step towards business success!

3. Your SSL certificate is instantly recognizable

Speaking of behind the scenes, you should know your extra security layer is instantly recognizable!

Your clients will immediately know if it’s safe or not to buy from your website. They’ll also know in a matter of seconds whether or not their email or phone number will be secure within your database.

Installing an SSL certificate on your website implies redirecting HTTP connections to HTTPS. This little aspect starts to show the moment your secure connection becomes active. And it’s good news for your business as well! Since visitors will recognize your website as a trusted, reputable source online.

4. If you sell your products online, an SSL certificate is mandatory

One of the most important facts you need to know, is an SSL certificate is mandatory if you store sensitive information, such as your clients’ credit card data!

Buying online has become a common habit lately. So, if you’re offering your clients the possibility to purchase a product directly from the website, you need to install an SSL certificate right away.

5. No website is too small to be hacked

Often times, small website owners skip installing that extra layer of security. But as a business just starting out, you shouldn’t risk the safety of your client’s data, even your website is new!

Malware and web crawlers aren’t interested in the age or size of your website. It’s always your customer’s personal data they’re after. Whether you have 10 or 10,000 clients, their sensitive information is equally important.

6. An SSL certificate could boost your website’s rankings

One great, and quite a useful advantage, is the possible boost in your search engine rankings!

Websites with installed SSL certificates tend to be seen by Google as a trusted source. As a result, the search engine’s algorithm could favor your website and push you closer to the top.

If you were looking for ways to get ahead of your competition, give SSL certificates a serious thought. Google likes to play it safe and it rewards its users who help the web be more secure.

7. The cost of an SSL certificate is worth the investment

SSL certificates don’t come for free. But then again, they’re really worth the investment!

When you run a small business, every single client counts. And for all the reasons explained above, installing a Secure Sockets Layer certificate will ensure your customers know you care about their safety.

The cost of an SSL certificate could be significantly lower than the business you might lose. Turning clients away because of lack of security might cost you a lot more in the long run!