Use Video to Help Your Start-Up Business

This is a guest post, provided by Robert Durango.

When most start-up companies begin to build their web presence, they focus on their blogs, websites, and social networking pages such as those found on Facebook and Twitter. Although all of these are effective at increasing a company’s online visibility, there is one important online resource that many business owners overlook: online video.

Video Set for Episode 02 (Camera)The rise of YouTube has made video creation ever more important for start-up businesses wishing to gain web presence. Through YouTube, companies can provide online tutorials, commercials, and other promotional video to a large scale public. In addition to offering video to a broader public, YouTube videos have the potential of going viral which for business owners means that they have the potential of reaching millions of potential clients for free.

Embedding videos on your own company’s website that may be linked to other social networking sites are also a great way to reach potential clients and raise your web presence. With the rise of technology, the common public is more interested in being entertained and engaged online and videos provide that needed stimuli.

However, for the common business owner, managing and publishing videos online may not be easy. But before you hire a team of web designers and programmers, consider purchasing online video publisher software. An online video publisher helps business owners publish and share their video across multiple platforms through one easy-to-use administrative page, and also provides streaming video hosting.

By using these types of software, business owners are able to constantly provide social networking sites, clients, and partners with up-to-date videos. Money doesn’t have to be made strictly though product sales for today’s business either. By using video, start-up businesses can increase their profits by further monetizing their site. Online video publisher software are also able to help business owners determine how far their brand is expanding, inform their target audience, and increase their user engagement all of which are needed to create a strong foundation for success.

This is a guest post, provided by Robert Durango.

Image Credit: Racum, on Flickr

Goals for Mid-Year 2006

I posted earlier this year in a post entitled Ambitions for 2006, my “ambitions” for this year.  This week, Darren at Problogger has put up another writing challenge to write about blog goals.  So, with that prompt, I’ll revisit my Ambitions for 2006 and add a few more in the scope of the challenge.

First, lets take a look at the ambitions that I set forth just before the ringing of the bell for 2006.

  • Stop Smoking – I’m still working on this one.
  • More posts – I’ve managed to increase my posting from 2-3 a week to nearly 5 a week.
  • More links – I’ve completely surpassed this early goal for this blog and am now hovering at about 70 individual links, while supergeekblog has only lightly raised to 23.
  • More traffic – These numbers have actually reversed.  Thatedeguy now gets 35-50 and SGB gets about 20-30 uniques a day.
  • Increase Personal Revenue – I finally got to the point where I’m actually going to get a check from adsense.  The next one might not be until 2007, but I’ll get one in 2006.
  • Venture – While I’m still working on DOTM, the other project went the way of the dodo for a while and in the mean time, I started work on A Penny Saved in January.

Well, there’s the ambitions review.  As you can tell, most of those ambitions have been met or are well on their way to being met.  Since the writing challenge is pointed a little more towards the blog side of things, I’m going to add/revise a few that are more blog related.

  • Traffic – I’d still like to see more traffic to my projects.  Thatedeguy has leveled off again.  A penny saved has continued to grow, but at a much slower rate than I would like.  SuperGeekBlog has actually been decreasing(A lack of writing on our part).  I’d also love to see DOTM pick up a little more of the steam it had early on.  So far it seems that I’ve got the quick start down pat, but it’s the continuance that seems to be failing me.
  • Posts – I’m pretty comfortable with my posting levels now.  I would like to see myself continue to increase the number of posts per week to at least 7.
  • Revenue – While I blog for the fun of it and it’s nice that they are paying for themselves at this point, I certainly wouldn’t argue if they started paying for some other things as well.  I’ve seen revenues increase drastically at the beginning of the year and they have also seemed to have leveled off.  Increasing traffic should certainly help me to grow.  I’d like to be earning about $100 a month by the end of the year.
  • I’d also like to see myself become a better writer.  I think that my writing is fair, but as I continue to write, I’d like to see it become better.

What are some of your goals?  Keep a close eye on Darren’s Problogger site throughout the week as he’ll be posting all the entries to this challenge as they are submitted.  I will also be trying to have a top 5 list of my favorites up and ready for everyone by the weekend.  I look forward to lots of fun entries to this challenge.

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Distro of the Month gets rearranged

I’ve just completed a bit of a redesign/rearrange of the Distro of the Month Website.  A little more content to the main page, some movement of the Ad’s for optimization and several other little tweaks here and there.  Same colors and theme though, which really should be the next big project.  The site just doesn’t look all that professional.  That could be hurting us a little, but I suppose that time will tell that.  Hop over and take a look if you would and tell me what you think of the rearrangement.

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Is the honeymoon over? You betcha.

Guy Kawasaki, who runs a VC blog that changes names often enough that I want to just brand it with a symbol like “the artist formerly known as prince”, put a post up the other day about “After the honeymoon.” In it, he lists 9 common problems that startup companies encounter after they get their funding and begin operations. Since I have a little bit of experience in this realm with DOTM, I thought I’d go through them each and give my two cents.

1. Problem: A founder isn’t delivering.

I think that this problem is numbered 1 because it is probably the most common. We’ve had partial issues that entailed this problem. In our case, it hasn’t necessarily been pinned on any one of the founders, but alternating amongst the founders. So far, the remaining founders have been able to get the one that isn’t delivering a kick in the butt and get him going. Perhaps, one day that won’t work anymore. What would we do about it? Kindly ask the founder to leave. If that fails, we vote him off the island.

2. Problem: The product is late.

We actually ran into this problem our very first shipment. It happens. In our case, we didn’t have body but ourselves and our customers to apologize to. We did. Nobody asked for a refund. Will it happen again? Maybe. What will we do then? Apologize again. Never underestimate the power of a sincere apology.

3. Problem: Sales aren’t meeting projections.

Unless you have a uber product, everybody is going to run into this. We did. We got over it and made adjustments to the way that we were doing things to help out the bottom line. We survived. Will it happen again? You Betcha.

4. Problem: Our team is not getting along.

Our team is our founders. If we don’t get along, we have issues. Does it happen? Yes. But more often than not, we make a compromise and get along with business.

5. Problem: We are getting slammed by the press/analysts/blogosphere.

We haven’t really had too big of a problem with this one. Of course part of that could be that we’re the oposite of Norm from cheers. Nobody knows our name.

6. Problem: VCs are micro-managing us.

7. Problem: VCs aren’t helping very much.

I’m lumping 6 and 7 together because we do not have any VC’s and as a result, 6 & 7 do no apply.

8. Problem: Our PR/ad agency/consultant is not delivering.

We do not have a PR/Ad Agency/Consultant. We fulfill those things ourselves. Of course, that could be the reason behind the “nobody knows our name” problem. We have done some PR and advertising, but really, none of us has any true experience and have exhausted most of our resources.

9. Problem: We are going to run out of money before we can raise more.

Last, but not least. This is a lot like #1. Most everybody is going to feel the crunch at some point. We are in that crunch now. Our subscriber base isn’t growing as fast as we would like and we’ve cut corners where we can, but we most certainly are out of money. Anything more comes from our pockets. Ouch!

I hope that this little foray into another list by Guy has been as meaningful and incitefull as it was for me. I know that when we began DOTM, we had “visions of sugarplums dancing in our heads”, but now we are faced with some hard realities that are expressed by these nine items along with some items that aren’t included. That’s fodder for another post however.

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