Has Live Streaming Video Become Mainstream?

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Do you have a live streaming video channel in your future? You may scratch your head wondering how such a Web presence might improve your business. But, even though it’s not a mainstream marketing vehicle today, live streaming video is a trend to watch. What started as live sports and concerts on the Web is expanding to eclectic programming ranging from weddings and celebrity interviews (eg, 50 Cent, Dalai Lama), to business events and training, political coverage, and more.

Early-stage companies like Justin.TV, Stickam, and Mogulus have made it easy to go online with compelling live streaming video. Just set up an account, plug your camera into your computer, and direct your video broadcast to the Web. A simple widget allows other sites to carry your channel.

One start-up, Ustream.TV, was even selected as exclusive Web video provider for the Republican National Convention, offering continuous live feeds of interviews and speeches to the entire planet as they occurred. According to founder John Ham, Ustream’s live channels are not just for watching, they’re for connecting and creating brand loyalty. “Ustream is not a destination,” says Ham, “it’s a platform for ‘live moments'” that is becoming a social networking foundation.

These are early days for live streaming business channels, but as MarketingProfs’ upcoming Digital Marketing Mixer Keynote and Internet Wine Library TV host Gary Vaynerchuk says: “This is where the world is going,” and where you need to be “spending time building your brand, building your community.”

The Po!nt: Dive in. Or at least keep your eye on the Live Stream; it may indeed be flowing mainstream.

Source: Howard Greenfield of Go Associates.

4 reasons to upgrade to Adobe Flash Player 9

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If you have experienced rich media on the web, including the likes of fully animated websites, interactive video, or even video chat rooms, then you are experiencing the power of Flash.  As many of you know, having an Adobe Flash Player 9 installed in your browsers will allow you to enjoy these fruits of the net.  With Adobe constantly upgrading their software it’s good to have the latest and greatest Flash player installed.  The best part of the installation is it’s free!  Here are some reasons to upgrade to Flash Player 9 from Adobe: Continue reading

Make Adobe Flash Player interactive with browsers

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Visitors to sites are accustomed to using the browser back/forward arrows for navigation and book marking.  We all know that Adobe Flash Player sites do not interact with browsers in this way without a little effort on the developer’s end.

While it is commonplace to use the back/forward arrows to navigate through non-Flash sites, other users prefer to use Continue reading

Three Bad Uses of Adobe Flash

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As you know, Adobe Flash Player is the most powerful cross-platform, interactive development tool available to web developers today.  You need to use this tool correctly, and I want to point out the three common misuses of Flash.

Using Flash Intros
In Flash’s early days, loading times for an introduction animation could be murderous.  Even though today many more people have better connections, a Flash intro is still bad practice.  When a user comes to your site there is usually a purpose.  It is not to sit and watch an intro that is keeping them from obtaining your content.  Most Flash intros do have a “Skip Intro” button.  Your first time users will have no clue how long your intro will be and most likely will skip it altogether.  This defeats the purpose of having an intro in the first place.

Creating Entire Sites In Flash
I have seen some extremely impressive Flash sites.  And as much as I love Flash, I know it is not right to have an all-Flash site.  First off, if you are not using dynamic content in your Flash site you have little to no chance of being seen by search engines. Second, your site should be 508 compliant. Your content needs to be accessible to people that use screen readers.  You can’t give up substance for Adobe Flash Player.

Animations For The Sake Of Animations
Gratuitous animations are a huge problem.  Using animation just to show off is a terrible use of Flash.  It can be distracting to the user, and when used improperly if takes away from the content in the site.

Think twice before using Flash in all the wrong ways.