Video marketing is a hot item today; in fact, many social media marketing experts are calling 2012 the year of video. YouTube is now the second most popular search engine, behind only Google. Video is a very viral tool when done right. It creates a three-dimensional experience for your prospects and your team.

I use video to attract prospects into my business and to train and mentor my team on various topics. Here are some things to consider and tips for creating compelling videos that will attract your perfect audience.

The challenge I hear about most often from those considering video is "I'm too shy" or "I don't look good on camera." Before giving in to these thoughts, remember this: you are your own worst critic. No one else cares whether your hair is perfect or your shirt collar is straight, or that you said "uh" five times. Relax, you are not auditioning for American Idol. Pretend that the camera is a good friend and the two of you are sitting down to have a one-on-one conversation.

Your goal is to project your real, authentic self. That is who and what people want to see. Don't try to be something or someone you are not. Prospects often tell me, "You seem so real, so genuine, like someone I can trust." Or, when we get on the phone, they say, "I feel like I know you; you sound just like your videos." Of course I do—I'm the same person! When I shoot a video, I am simply having a one-on-one conversation—with my camera.

Video provides the single best way to create a bond online with your audience. Nothing else gives people a way to see you, hear you, watch your body language, and get to the heart of who you are. Some things just come across better through the fluid motion of a video.

Don't make your video into a pitching fest for your opportunity. Instead, share content of value. This establishes you as trustworthy and reliable, and when people know you aren't pitching them they are much more likely to share, tweet, and pass your video on to others, or even embed it on their site. You establish yourself as a credible leader eager to contribute.

Video production is best kept simple. I mostly use my iPhone, a twenty-dollar tripod, and the natural lighting from a few key places in my home—my kitchen or my office. Be sure your backdrop is neat and clean. Practice a few times and don't worry if you don't get it right the first few times. I have deleted plenty of video!

People need to know who you are, what you are about, and how to find you; they need to hear from you regularly and develop a trust for you, which creates respect for you—and they need to do all this before they will buy from you. Video provides a perfect medium to accomplish this 24/7.

JACKIE ULMER is a network marketing
veteran, coach, and author. Her passion is
helping others build successful home-based
businesses online and offline.