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Adding Video to Premium adverts

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On Premium adverts we offer the embedding of video into your advert.
We use YouTube for this, as it maximises the audience for your business, and allows large high quality video files to be associated with your web advert.

There are a few ways to ensure that your video is successfully embedded within your advert.

If you already have a video on youtube then all we need is the URL : Eg: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FFoLri1QDNQ

If you have a finished video in any of the following formats : .avi, .3gp (mobile phones), .mov, .mp4, .mpeg, .flv, swf, mkv then you can email it to us or use a free large file sending tool such as USENDIT .

If you just have photos that you wish to make into a showreel then use one of the following programs.

Movie Maker 

Microsoft offer a free movie making suite called Windows Live Movie Maker. It is really easy to use and can be downloaded by clicking here. Windows Live Movie Maker is not available for Windows XP or earlier versions of Windows.
Click here for a Microsoft step by step guide to using still images to create a video.

Animoto

Animoto allows you to create very visual 30 second videos for free. Registration is required. They do offer a paid for service offering longer video length.
Click here to visit Animoto

There are literally hundreds of videos on YouTube that give support, advice and tips for creating videos for YouTube. Just do a quick search and you should find what you are looking for.

Here are some quick guidelines that YouTube give to video uploaders.

YouTube can accept almost any video format for upload, but for most users we have found that the following settings give the best results.

* Resolution: 640 x 360 (16:9) or 480 x 360 (4:3) recommended
* Audio Format: MP3 or AAC preferred
* Frames per second: 30
* Maximum length: 10 minutes (we recommend 2-3 minutes)
* Maximum file size: 1 GB
Advertising is all about knowing what your customers want and communicating the benefits you can offer them. Stop telling them and they will stop buying – they could even forget about you.

When business gets tough the first reaction is to cut advertising budgets, despite the evidence that, if anything, it is time to keep your communication levels at a high. The Harvard Business School says that brands that increase their advertising during a recession, when competitors are cutting back, can improve market share and appear more stable.
Success in a recession is about being “brave”, customers do not stop spending during a recession – they just tend to buy differently.

Making advertising work during the recession

1 Set your objectives clearly – What are you trying to achieve with your marketing budget. What products do you intend to sell to them, this process allows you to see the opportunities that exist even in a recession. Web advertising allows you to try new approaches, changing the emphasis on your advert to target new products, driving traffic to a specific web address etc. Print advertising, especially in regional guides allows you to promote different aspects of your business, different products may sell better in specific areas.

2 Review your existing operations – Are your adverts working? This means taking a look at print, web, and other media that you currently advertise on. People are very unspecific when questioned where they saw your advert, they say they saw you on the internet, in a book etc. The need to have some way of measuring, especially on the internet, is paramount. Tools such as google analytics, both free and very easy to use, are recommended as they allow you to monitor traffic referrals. Don’t be afraid to change where you advertise. And don’t be afraid to ask questions, How many hits? Where does it get distributed? etc

3 Use your existing customers as a marketing tool – Happy customers will be fast to spread the word, use reviews on websites, or testimonials on your own website.

4 Frequency of advertising – Frequency of advertising is so important during a recession, this reinforces your stability as a company giving people confidence to book with you. Remember out of sight is out of mind.

5 Remember advertising is your lifeblood – In many studies it has been found that businesses who cut advertising spend during a recession lost both market share and continued to lag behind their competitors even after the recession. This weekend saw publicity around allegations that TripAdvisor’s customer reviews are often generated by the hotel owners themselves.

The lengths that hoteliers were going to, in some cases employing PR companies to add reviews, highlights just how valuable a positive customer review is to your on-line advertising.

On www.guidesforbrides.co.uk we have included the customer rating and review facility free of charge on all premium adverts.

Are you making the most of yours?

A simple email to your clients either after a successful appointment, or after their wedding, inviting them to review your services is all you need.

To add the correct link to your email:
Find your advert on www.guidesforbrides.co.uk .
Click the “more info” link.
Copy the web address from the top of the page and insert it into your email, eg

https://www.guidesforbrides.co.uk/cakes-and-fountains/oxfordshire/chocolate-fountains-by-fancy-that/index-_2234.html

Our statistics are showing that businesses with reviews outperform those without, so contact your brides today. If your advert does not have a Review facility, please reply to this email and we will arrange for our sales team to contact you.

With over 246,000 unique visits so far this year, www.guidesforbrides.co.uk is the ideal platform to promote your business. With the current economic climate it is more important than ever that you get value for money. With this in mind we give you some very useful hints and tips to make the most out of your adverts. Please take just 5 minutes to read the email and take advantage of its content.

Your Platinum, Premium+ or Premium advert on www.guidesforbrides.co.uk will give you 250 characters of text on the main advert and 1000 characters of text on the more info page. This allows you to introduce your company, explain briefly what you do, and more importantly the area you cover. The most successful adverts are the ones that avoid loads of flowery text, ie ; “We stock Sincerity, Augusta Jones…” will be more successful and found much easier than “We are a small family run bridal shop in a lovely location”.

Repetition is desirable and useful to the search engine spiders that travel across the internet, wording such as wedding photographer in Oxfordshire, bridal shop in Berkshire, repeated a few times throughout your text will reinforce what you do and the more accurate and relevant it is the more likely it will be found in searches using Google, yahoo etc.

I have changed my text….what now ?

Ensure that your web and email links are relevant, that traffic from www.guidesforbrides.co.uk lands on your wedding page. People tend to get lost if they land on an irrelevant page, the less navigation a bride has to do the more likely they will find what they are looking for. If you are running a special offer, change the web link to that page, if you want brides to email you, send them to your contact page. Email links are just as important, when did you last check your email was working ? .Email addresses such as GMAIL, YAHOO or HOTMAIL all expire if not used.

Both my web and email links are working….what next ?

www.guidesforbrides.co.uk have their own YouTube channel, this is now a year old and has attracted over 1000 visitors. The importance of marketing within YouTube cannot be underestimated, as in April visits to YouTube reached 100 million unique users. We will create a show reel from your images and post this onto our YouTube channel, alongside your Guides For Brides advert text and your web address. This provides you with an amazing opportunity to showcase your venue, your favours, potential customers can hear you sing, watch your magic etc. A show reel is suitable for every type of wedding business.  If you have the ability to create your show reel, perhaps you are a videographer, then any of the following formats QuickTime .MOV, Windows .AVI, or .MPG files will be fine. The images or completed show reel can be emailed to neil@guidesforbrides.co.uk.

Ok I have a show reel….what now ?

www.guidesforbrides.co.uk allows visitors to leave reviews of your business, in a style similar to Amazon. Visitors can rate your business from 1 to 5 stars. This is a great way to shine amongst your competitors. Ask every customer to leave a review on our website, this allows prospective customers to see how great you are and provides you with both great testimonials and gives you knowledge that can be invaluable to what works and what doesn’t. The reviews can be deleted by you, if you feel that the review is harmful to your business but cannot be edited, ensuring that reviews remain unbiased and true, and more importantly useful to Brides.

I now have a couple of reviews….what now ?

www.guidesforbrides.co.uk allows you to offer visitors a special offer, this is a great way to up sell your product, and of course this can changed allowing you to tailor special offers either seasonally or during slow business periods. This has proved to be the deciding factor when it comes to choosing between two similar services.

I now have a special offer…..what now ?

All of this is fantastic, but it is just as important to know who has visited your website, how long they were on it and what they did. On the most basic level you could ask every person who calls or emails where they found you, this does have its drawbacks and can be misleading. We use Google analytics, www.google.com/analytics to find out where our traffic comes from. This free resource from Google is easy to set up, and can give you a remarkable insight into your web visitors. It requires yourself or your web designer to insert a line of text into your website.

We hope that this is of use to your business both on www.guidesforbrides.co.uk and on other websites, or just generally for your web marketing. Google analytics is very easy to use, providing you with more and more in depth information as you continue to use it. None of this should take more than 10 minutes per change and once done can be left or changed as often as you like. Search engines like change, giving them a reason to re-index the page so there are benefits to regular changes.

Guides For Brides will continue to provide free no obligation help to both advertisers and non advertisers, as we believe that we are the only online wedding directory to do this.

Here at Guides for Brides we would like to share some ideas with you….

To attract more clicks on your web advert use keywords that are being searched for, i.e. wedding photography, wedding photographers, within the text on your advert.

Keyword density should also be a very important part of your marketing strategy, and a certain amount of repetition of key words helps the search engines find your advert.

Quality Content on your own website and your advert with Guides for Brides will bring people back to your website. As people always want to tell others about a good thing it will get you forward-links from other sites. Therefore your content should be written with your keyword phrases in mind.

Changing Content will ensure that your advert is found as the search engine will be forced to re-search that page, and will present brides with relevant up to date information.

Be patient. Being found on the web isn’t about instant gratification. Results often take months to see, and this is especially true the smaller you are, and the newer you are to doing business online. Guides for Brides have a high traffic website that is visible to many search engines, thus ensuring your web advert has a prominence that may take some time to otherwise attain.

If you are keen to track where your web site traffic is coming from we recommend Google Analytics www.google.com/analytics. With this FREE tool you can learn more about where your visitors come from and how they interact with your site. You’ll get the information you need to write better ads, strengthen your marketing initiatives, and create higher-converting websites. This does require a certain technical ability so you may need to seek help from your web designer.

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