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How You Can Make A Video Blog – cheap, quick & easy

A while ago I decided that I wanted a web site that was just for my videos.

I have video embedded in blog posts on my main real estate site, but I wanted a clean looking page where people could go and just watch my content. A video-blog, or vlog, as the cool kids call it.

As of yesterday, I have one:

a screengrab of my Video Site

a screengrab of my Video Site

Before I built this, I did a bit of googling, and all the nice ‘video’ wordpress themes were anywhere from $37  to $150.
I have nothing against premium themes – I use Agentpress, and Canvas by woothemes for different sites – but this was more of a weekend project that I didn’t want to put cash into (yet – I don’t invest cash in a site until it’s producing revenue).
 
Plus, I want to show my friends how to duplicate it, and free makes that easier.
 
After scouring the web for literally dozens of minutes, I found a plug-in called Tubepress, and I gave it a whirl:
Tubepress WordPress plugin for online video 

Easy install, and the control panel was simple enough for me. So far so good. 

Tubepress allows you to embed youtube videos, and you have the option to select videos by playlist, keyword, and more. You can display all of your videos, or all videos (by all users) with “Austin Real Estate” in the title. 

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On my vlog, I am displaying 3 separate channels – Business Advice, Commercial Real Estate, and videos about Kitchener Waterloo (my local market).  I am able to embed a separate playlist on each page, and each page is just a simple-to-add page in wordpress.

Tubepress, so far, gives me the ability to have a fully functional vlog without paying for a premium vlog template. I tinkered around with a few free themes which looked nice, but I settled on Canvas by Woothemes, which I’m using on another blog (and I own the rights to reuse it, so its not costing me $. I also like how the free versions of Titan and Vigilance look for a vlog like this) .

I really like the layout – what do you think?

Plugin allows you to easily display videos

Ben’s Action Plan

In this era of new media, social media, web 3.0 – or “talking to people” as I like to call it, you want to have a vlog (and a blog, and a twitter, and a facebook, and a …. you get the point. Be easy to find!) where people can sit and watch you for hours (eventually. It’s ok if its only for minutes to start with). 

This is really easy for you to implement in your business. Here is what I would do if I were you:

1) Buy a flip camera, a camcorder, or a webcam

2) Time block 20 minutes twice a week to create short videos.  On market conditions; on mortgage rates; on new listings; on how to win multiple offers; on that hot new restaurant in your area that just opened up.  Just like a blog post, make vlogs that your potential clients will find interesting and valuable.

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Be less concerned with the quality of the production, and more concerned with the quality of information.

3) Upload the videos to youtube.  If you have a google/gmail login, you have access to youtube (because google owns it). If not, sign up (it’s free).

4) Organize your videos into playlists on youtube

5) Start a new blog, or install tubepress plug-in on your existing wordpress blog

6) Make a post/page and embed tubepress in it (you just type [tubepress] – its that easy).  I have mine as the only blog post on BenjaminBach.TV, so its what people see when they come to the site. On another blog, its a page on an existing blog (see here) that you can click on.

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7) Let people know about it online and offline, just like any other site you want to promote.

8 ) Make GREAT content (that’s the killer app)

(UPDATE: I’m hearing from #SXSW via gingerw that you should also have PubSubHubbub installed on your video blog.  Google it, like I am now 🙂

Let me know how you make out; I’d love to hear tips you have, themes you’re using, and plug-ins that are making your life easier. I just put my vlog up yesterday, so I’m as eager as anyone to learn 🙂

Come and find me on twitter @benjaminbach to let me know that you liked this article (and especially if you didn’t, but you gotta tell me why) and what you’d like me to to expand upon.

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Written By

Benjamin Bach is a REALTOR with Keller Williams Realty in Kitchener Waterloo, Canada (home of the Blackberry) and shows people how they can avoid a mediocre retirement by building wealth through smart Real Estate Investments. You can find out more at Kitchener-Waterloo-Real-Estate-Investments.com

26 Comments

26 Comments

  1. Stephanie Crawford

    March 15, 2010 at 2:02 pm

    Cool. Thanks for the tip. I’ve just made a page with Tubepress. https://stephaniecrawford.net/blog/video/ Right now it’s showing all three of my playlists: listings, blog posts, and personal. I’d like to filter out the personal vids but haven’t quite figured it out. I suppose I must move them to a new user id.

    • Benjamin Bach

      March 17, 2010 at 10:10 pm

      Stephanie, your corgi-husky is adorable. my wife grew up with corgis, and we have a samoyed now. cute!

      RE: tubepress, in the documentation, which I found by googling, it lays out how to show only the playlist you want:

      [tubepress mode=”playlist” playlistValue=”6813408AE8D50E6F”] where the “6813408AE8D50E6F” is the end of the url link youtube gives your playlists

      Let me know if that works

  2. Kevin Baker

    March 15, 2010 at 2:14 pm

    Another Great Post Ben! Site looks great and definitly a good idea. I have the video’s embedded in my site usually with some written copy but this idea is just another way to get the word out there. Keep up the great work!

  3. Benjamin Bach

    March 15, 2010 at 2:15 pm

    Thanks Kevin, I appreciate you
    written copy is very important; i’m going to implement that on the ‘channels’ pages by linking to relevant articles, and perhaps an excerpt.

  4. coolsprings

    March 15, 2010 at 3:11 pm

    There are several agents that have started video blogging around the area. Only one of them has really started doing it professionally. Most of them are still hacking it up with Flip Mino cameras.

    • Benjamin Bach

      March 16, 2010 at 2:33 pm

      I’m actually a fan of the Flip cams, although mine is first gen (not the sweet HD ones). What’s your beef with them?
      It’s been my experience that people want good content, moreso than slick production (although well made things are good!)

    • Nashville Grant

      March 16, 2010 at 3:52 pm

      I agree, a Flip camera + no editing skills can equal a poor representation of yourself…not that Ben’s are like that at all.

      • Benjamin Bach

        March 17, 2010 at 10:07 pm

        an expensive camera + no editing skills can look crappy too
        but
        a cheap camera + no editing skills + killer content can = many happy clients

        • Nashville Grant

          March 17, 2010 at 10:10 pm

          That’s totally true too. Maybe I’m just too ugly for the camera!

          • Benjamin Bach

            March 17, 2010 at 10:13 pm

            I highly doubt that. Most of us are just camera shy. I watch myself, and I cringe -and we can all see how good looking I am.

            Feel confident giving info, just like you would to a client. Pretend you’re talking to a client, what would you tell them?

  5. Justin Boland

    March 15, 2010 at 4:36 pm

    Great content, man, thank you. This was very timely and very well done.

  6. Benjamin Bach

    March 15, 2010 at 4:39 pm

    Thanks Justin, I appreciate you
    How can I help you grow your business this year?

  7. Ken Brand

    March 15, 2010 at 10:15 pm

    This is wow-worthy work. Simple to follow and supremely actionable. This is very helpful. Thanks.

  8. Chad Bergman

    April 1, 2010 at 12:43 pm

    Great App. I’ll integrate it into both of my WP websites.
    MyDenverHouse.com
    LivinginRoxborough.com

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