According to a recent report sponsored by Social Media Examiner, 76% of businesses surveyed plan to increase their video marketing efforts and use of YouTube in 2012, making it the No. 1 area for marketing investment. This is no surprise, considering that studies show more and more people are downloading and streaming videos on sites such as YouTube. Creating videos is much simpler than you might think. Below are some easy steps, resources, and examples so you can start putting video to use for your business sooner rather than later.

Step 1: Purchase a small, portable camera, such as the DXG 5MP HD Digital Camcorder 3.0, which can be purchased for around $100 at Wal-Mart or online (do a search for DXG 5MP HD Digital Camcorder). Also check out your smartphone to see if it has a built-in video camera.

Step 2: Once you record your video, you can edit it using some simple editing software. YouTube has free software you can use, or you can check out your options in the post “5 Video Editing Tools for Marketing Local Business”  to decide which one works best for you.

Step 3: Upload your video to YouTube, at a minimum, as well as to your business website and any social media networks you are a part of.

Deciding on a Subject

Once you make video a priority, most of the subject matter for your videos will suggest itself. Some of the best material will come from the day-to-day activities of your business. For example, imagine a roofer who gets a call about a leaky roof. When he gets to the house to investigate, he takes out his camcorder (which is lightweight and easily fits into his pocket) and records shots of the roof, the gutters, and the surrounding areas of the house as he walks through the evaluation. He may use a tripod so he can easily record himself on camera, or he may bring someone along who can do the recording for him. Back in the office, the roofer uploads the video to his computer, edits it if he so chooses, and then posts it to his business website and social media sites, such as YouTube, Facebook, etc.

Here are two examples of videos on YouTube that give you an idea of the type of footage and information a roofer might capture and share. Remember, it’s always a good idea to keep videos brief — three to five minutes in length — and to-the-point.

Roof Leak Inspection & Repair

Selecting a Roofer or Roofing Contractor

In my next post, we’ll go into more detail on the types of videos you can capture for your business, in addition to how to seamlessly incorporate the process of video capture into your day-to-day operations.

—Chris Marentis is founder and CEO of Surefire Social, a local Internet marketing company.