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An Idea Who's Time Has Come- *Video Classified Ads*

Selling With Video

 
 

How To Sell With Video

How do I sell my stuff or services on realpeoplerealstuff.com?
Make a video commercial. You can use a camcorder, webcam, or even your cellphone if it captures video. Plus, most digital cameras have video capabilities that let you capture video between 30 seconds and 2 minutes – or longer. So do most new cell phones.

How can I do this if I'm not a professional director/cameraperson/actor?
Doesn't matter – just look at all the videos that people post on YouTube. Better yet, look at the ones right here on realpeoplerealstuff.com. Quality doesn't matter as much as humor, content, or clarity.

How can I do this if I'm not a professional editor either?
Neither are most of the people who post here. Most people use iMovie or Windows Movie Maker – free programs that come on Mac and PC respectively. Plus, many digital video cameras have editing capabilities built right in. But you may not need to edit your video at all – just keep it short and sweet.

What video formats do you accept?
.WMV, .AVI, .MOV, .MP4 and .MPG. The best size is 320 x 240 pixels. The best format is .MP4.

How long should my commercial be?
Keep your video under 3 minutes – somewhere between 30 seconds and 60 seconds is best – just like real commercials. But if you need more time to show off or talk about your product's features, by all means, take it.

Do I have to make a commercial, or can I just post a photograph?
You can post a photograph in addition to your video. But you must post a video. Your video can consist of a still image or a slide show with you talking over it – but it will still need to be in one of the video formats mentioned above. See the Trivial Pursuit commercial for an example of this type of video.

Can I use my favorite song as my soundtrack?
You may not use any music (or video footage, or images) that you don't own the rights to. But both iMovie and Windows Movie Maker provide some free graphics, music, and sound effects within their editing programs.

For music that you may be able to use for free – if you provide attribution to the musician – visit creativecommons.org. Be sure to read their Terms of Use carefully. We know that there are some other royalty-free music sites out there, and we're looking into them. If you know of any, tell us about them.

If you're a musician, no problem – just compose your own soundtrack.

Otherwise, you can sing, or do an original rap, or write and record a poem about the stuff or services you're selling. Or don't use music at all. Or use subtitles. Just don't violate any copyright laws.

Is it really free to post my video on realpeoplerealstuff.com?
It's really, really free – for now, anyway. Which means you pay nothing. Nada. Zero. Zilch.

How do I post my video on realpeoplerealstuff.com?
1. Create an account. Click on the Log-in link on the top right of the page, or click on the Post button on the right-hand side of the page.
Once you've received your confirmation email, just follow the instructions. Once you've confirmed your password, you'll be ready to post your first video.

2. Click on the Post button. Select the city nearest you from the drop-down menu, fill in your zipcode, and select the category that best describes your merchandise or services from the drop-down menu. You may post your video in more than one category, but you'll need to go through the posting process again. Don't go crazy – if we find the same video in every category, we'll delete all but one of them.

3. Fill in the title field. Make short, but descriptive. "Norelco electric razor." "Vintage Harmony guitar." "Dog Guard Invisible Fencing."

4. Write a description. Be specific. Tell what you're selling and why you're selling it. Funny, quirky, or beautiful ads that clearly communicate price or value get more response.

5. Add tags. Tags are keywords that people use when searching realpeoplerealstuff.com. You don't have to add them to your video, but it'll increase the chances of your video being found by people who are searching for what you're selling.

For instance, if you're selling a vintage Harmony guitar, your tags could be:

guitar music vintage harmony instrument play

If you're selling invisible fencing, your tags might be:

puppy dog pet safe train fence invisible guard yard

6. Add your price. If you want to sell a scratching post for five dollars, type in "5.00" If you're selling a service, tell provide rates per hour or per day. You get the point.

7. Click "Choose a video file" to upload your video. That will open a window that allows you to navigate to your movie file on your computer. If your video is already posted somewhere else, such as YouTube, you may paste in the Embed code instead of choosing a video file from your computer.

8. Add still photos. This is optional, but we recommend that you add at least one photograph as your thumbnail. This is the first image of you and/or what you're selling that people will see when they look at the home page or at search results. Otherwise, they'll just see the first frame from your video, and that's not always the best representation of you or what you're selling.

9. Click the Submit button.
And you're done!

How do I post my second video?
If you're already logged in, just click Post. Otherwise, login in first, then follow the same process that you did before.

How do I edit, repost, or delete my posts?
After logging in, select your video ad for playback, then click the "edit" tab at the top of the page.

Why was my video deleted?
Probably because you violated our Terms of Use. If you believe your video was deleted in error, please send us an email.

Can I comment on other people's videos?
Absolutely! Just log in and click the blue "Add new comment" link at the bottom of the page for that video. You must be logged in to add a comment. Any logged-in user may comment on your video, as well.

Just be sure to keep your comments constructive. This is not the place to point out to someone that they're overweight or funny-looking, or that their video sucks. Nasty comments will be deleted if they reach our attention. And if you repeatedly make nasty comments, your account will be terminated.

What happens when someone wants to buy my stuff? How will they get in touch with me?
They'll reply to your ad using the blind email address that is assigned to you when you post your ad. That way, your email address won't be available for all the world to see, but prospective buyers will be able to contact you.

What happens when I receive their email?
You answer it. Once you've agreed on a price or other conditions, you arrange the transaction.

How do I handle shipping?
That's between you and the buyer. But for that reason, we recommend that you sell your stuff or your services within your local area. If you are selling items that must be shipped, be sure you get payment up front.

What can I sell on realpeoplerealstuff.com?
You can sell your house or apartment. A motorcycle or car or bike. A guitar or drum set or recording equipment. Computer equipment. Hummel figurines. Vinyl. Your handbag collection. Designer jeans. Your pet anaconda. An extra microwave oven. Your velvet painting of Jesus that cries. Your great American novel or self-published poetry. Posters for Grateful Dead concerts. Extra tickets to a show. Your own business, and positions available there. Your services as a housekeeper, writer, editor, babysitter, chef, entertainer, CPA, wine-dinner-coordinator, petsitter, mural painter, and anything else you can think of – as long as it's not illegal. No porn, and please try to limit profanity.

You can't sell: Anything illegal. No porn. No personals. There are lots of places on the Internet for those things. This is not one of them.

How can I make people want to watch my video and buy my stuff?
Star in your own commercial. YOU should be the star of your video so make sure you include yourself. People connect with people. They want to know who they're buying from, and they're more likely to buy if you engage them by being funny, smart, sexy, edgy or whatever.
Always wanted to make money on the Internet?
Just sell your stuff on realpeoplerealstuff.com. Because it's video, you can tell people a lot more about what you're selling than what they can see in a couple of photographs on craigslist.com or eBay or the newspaper. Plus, you can be funny. And if you are, you could be semi-famous, like many folks on YouTube.

How can I make my ad more effective?
Be sure to tell the viewer the following:

  • What you're selling.
  • Why you're selling it – have some fun with this.
  • Any information that makes this item special (e.g. "the one item of clothing my cat has never thrown up on," "George Clinton has touched this saxophone," "I've changed the oil in this thing at least once every three months; maintenance records included," "Free loaf of banana bread with purchase"

Above all, your video commercial should either be:

  • Funny.
  • Compelling and engaging.
  • A great deal.
  • Beautiful.
  • Or all of the above.

For those who hate the commercials they see on TV, this is your chance to show those big ad agencies what a good commercial is really like. For those of you in advertising, video production, or entertainment, this is your chance to prove all of the naysayers wrong. Show us your stuff. For those of you who just want to be seen – well, here's your chance.

How do I find out more about what is offered in the ad?
Click on the thumbnail to view the video, then click on the blue "Contact seller to learn more or buy" link underneath the video, below the Category and Place sections.

A form will appear in your browser. Simply fill in the required fields and click the Send Email button. If you have a question about what they're selling, make it specific, e.g. "What size is the sweater?" or "Does the AC work?

How do I pay for the stuff I'm buying?
That's between you and the seller – just as it would be if you were buying from a newspaper classified ad. Most sellers won't accept checks (unless they're certified), so come prepared with cash or a money order. Some sellers may offer secure online transactions through their own web sites so you can just use a credit card. And some sellers have a physical place of business, like an office or a store, where they can process your credit card transaction.

Never email anyone your credit card number – that's a good way to get your identity stolen. If you're purchasing someone's services, you'll need to set up payment and terms with the seller.

How do I get the stuff I've bought?
Again, follow the same procedures you would if you were buying from a newspaper classified ad. Arrange a safe place to meet, or bring a friend if you're picking up your stuff from the seller's home. If the seller is delivering stuff to your house, be sure you have a friend with you while the seller is there.

Is it safe to buy and sell on realpeoplerealstuff.com?
It's as safe as any other private-party transaction, including newspaper classifieds and craigslist.com. When you post an ad, your email address will remain confidential. Buyers will use a "blind" email address we provide, and we will then relay that to your actual address.

You can include your real email address or web site address in your video, but we recommend that you don't put your real email address in your text description, because if you do, your inbox is likely to be flooded with junkmail.

Is it safe to meet a buyer or seller?
As you would when meeting with a buyer or seller of a newspaper classified, use common sense and meet in a public place, or have friends with you.

Do you have secure online transactions?
We do not provide online transactions at this time. Buyers and sellers will agree on payment terms and delivery/pick-up options, just like you would with a classifed ad in the newspaper. For this reason, we suggest you keep your transactions local.

Many sellers, however, do have their own web sites, where they may provide secure online transactions through PayPal or credit cards. Or they may have a store where they can process a credit card transaction by phone. Either way, they should be able to ship your items just about anywhere.

But remember: Never email anyone your credit card number – that's a good way to get your identity stolen.

Are there any rules?
Yes. For more rules, see our Terms of Use. In the meantime, here's a quick rundown:

  • You must really have something to sell – even if it's just used dental floss. Don't post an ad for something you have no intention of selling.
  • You must be honest about what you're selling, and fully disclose any problems with it (e.g. "The ‘chop' button on this blender sticks, but otherwise, it's perfect.")
  • No porn, no guns (water-pistols are okay), no illegal substances.
  • No profanity, unless it's really essential. If we find it offensive, we'll delete it.
  • No harassment of any kind.

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