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Put Audio & Video on Your Web Site

As a company that sells streaming media services for a living, we get questions everyday about what needs to be done to make an audio or video presentation that will stream well over the Internet. Most of these inquiries come from small businesses with limited budgets for marketing and advertising. They are always pleasantly surprised when we tell them that they can do it themselves!

Let's start with an audio only presentation:

  • Write out your script first! Focus on two to three points that you feel are essential to explain your products or services. Keep the script simple. If your site offers a wide variety of goods or services, you might consider several different messages with each one keying in on one or two important areas.

  • Have someone who is not familiar with your business review the script and your site. Be sure that they understand your message. If they don't, rewrite it!

  • Practice reading the script until you feel completely familiar and comfortable with it. (You can hire professional voice talent for reasonable rates if you'd prefer not recording the audio yourself.)

  • Use the best quality tape recorder available to you. A cassette recorder is fine.

  • Use a high quality brand name audiotape.

  • An external microphone that plugs into your recorder is preferable to the one that comes built-in. They are very inexpensive and produce a better recording.

  • Do your recording in a quiet place with as little background noise as possible. (That one seems pretty obvious, doesn't it?)

  • Speak naturally! It can help to have a friend or colleague act as an audience to give you focus.

  • Record your presentation several times. Select the one that will sound the most natural and inviting to your site visitors.

  • Send the tape to the encoding (streaming) vendor. They'll take it from there!

A video presentation takes a little more time and effort, but you really can do it yourself. Your home video camera will work just fine! All of the same rules you used to make your audiotape apply here including the use of an external microphone. Good quality videotape is essential. The following suggestions will help you prepare a video presentation for your site that should stream very well:

  • Keep the camera steady! Put the camera on a tripod or brace it against something solid like a table or a wall. If you must pan or zoom, do it very slowly. (Too much motion can cause a "blurry" stream.)

  • Simplify your frame. Think about where everything is going to be. People coming in and out of the frame can create movement that may cause confusion.

  • Stay focused. A lot of auto-focus cameras can't focus properly if you are too close to your subject. Five or six feet away is a good distance. Don't try to shoot through a window; the camera will focus on the glass.

  • Good lighting is essential. Try to light your scene from the front. Don't stand in front of a window; the backlighting will cause you to be in silhouette. Try shooting outside if possible.

  • Use the fastest record speed. This will insure the best video quality.

  • Record in a quiet place. Hold the mike close to your mouth to cut down on external noises.

  • RELAX AND ENJOY YOURSELF! It really shows. Practice until you feel comfortable.

If you have additional questions or concerns, your streaming vendor should be ready and able to assist you.

Early adopters of Rich Media techniques, streaming being one of them, have already started to reap the rewards of higher click-through rates and increased conversion rates. If your message is meaningful and relevant to your site visitors, your streaming presentation will add to their enjoyment of visiting your site and encourage them not only to buy but also to return and buy again!

Ronni Rhodes is the owner of WBC Imaging, an Internet company that specializes in web site enhancement utilizing streaming media technology. With her husband, Don, a digital media engineer, they work with companies to incorporate streaming as part of successful and meaningful sales and marketing programs.

Please direct all questions and comments to: Ronni@wbcimaging.com 520-742-5780 http://www.wbcimaging.com

In The News:

NASA launched a spacecraft Tuesday night on a mission to smash into an asteroid and test whether it would be possible to knock a space rock off course if one were to threaten Earth. The DART spacecraft, short for Double Asteroid Redirection Test, lifted off from Vandenberg Space Force Base atop a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.
The federal government is embarking on a new attempt to explain the unexplainable.
NASA's Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) mission, the world's first planetary defense test mission, is scheduled to launch early Wednesday morning.
The historic November 2021 partial lunar eclipse stunned viewers around the world on Thursday night.
A partial lunar eclipse will take place on Thursday night and into early Friday.
A prosthetic-tailed dolphin named Winter that starred in the "Dolphin Tale" movies died Thursday evening at a Florida aquarium despite life-saving efforts to treat a gastrointestinal abnormality, aquarium officials said.
Four astronauts returned to Earth on Monday, riding home with SpaceX to end a 200-day space station mission that began last spring.
If you don’t want to believe tech companies at face value, take your privacy into your own hands
A U.S. survey of astronomers puts the search for extraterrestrial life at the top of their to-do list for the next 10 years.
National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA) Hubble Space Telescope is in safe mode yet again.
Climate change may impact the production of corn (maize) and wheat as early as 2030, according to NASA researchers.
Humans introduced a new life form to outer space on Friday as NASA astronauts harvested the first ever chile peppers onboard the International Space Station.
The Northern Lights may be visible just in time for Halloween.
On Thursday, the sun released a significant solar flare toward Earth, peaking at 11:35 a.m. EDT, scientists say.
A good cleaning goes well beyond just the screen. If that’s all you’re focused on, you’re making an expensive mistake that could take years off your TV’s life.
The scale presented contains seven levels that NASA said are "reflective of the winding, complicated staircase of steps that would lead to scientists declaring they’ve found life beyond Earth."
The San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance announced Thursday that two female critically endangered California condors had successfully hatched eggs without the help of male condors.
NASA is now targeting February 2022 for the launch of its powerful Space Launch System (SLS) rocket.
The U.S. military launched three suborbital rockets this week from NASA's Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia.
As cooler temperatures move over the eastern U.S., the West is forecast to see heavy rain and mountain snow, including what's known as a "bomb cyclone" near the Northwest.

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