Add Voice to Your Web site
Talk to your visitors and make a quicker connection
Several years ago I found a way to put audio (sound) files on my site. The process was difficult but I was able to generate Windows Media files that people could listen to on the Internet. But there were a couple of the problems: 1. People with slow Internet connections or slow computers had difficulty listening to them, 2. It seemed like half the people had Windows Media Player on their computers and the other half had Real Audio Player. The good news was that about half of the visitors could listen to my audio messages. Some of those could listen if they had a fast enough Internet connection.
Later, a new technology was released that enables anyone to listen to a voice message. This Macromedia Flash technology allows you to produce something called “Streaming Audio”. The attached free e-book discusses various types of audio files. But THE GOOD NEWS is this: You do not have to know all about the various sound files to get audio on your site. If your time is limited, like mine is, and you have more important things to do, like write articles, promote your business, refine your site, and other creative things, you can still have a talking Web site with little or no effort.
I found out about an online service, called Instant Audio. They claimed they could make it easy and painless to get my audio message on my site. They also said it would be in a format that just about anyone could easily listen to. So, I signed up. I found it very user friendly. I was able to create the voice message with my microphone or by phone. (The phone method is my favorite because of the higher quality I noticed.)
After using the service for quite some time I started to notice ad about “Putting audio on your site for free… without a monthly service charge.” So I unsubscribed from instant Audio’s online service and tried one of those programs. I downloaded it, unzipped it and went through the learning curve. I found that my time was being eaten up because I was required to do several steps like change the html code and upload the sound to the site. I also noticed that the tech support that I had become accustomed to, with Instant Audio, was not available. But, in the interest of “saving money” I persisted.
After careful consideration, I decided that my time was more valuable in doing other things. I didn’t have time to mess with a lot of steps and a lot of details to get my sound files up. Now, if you are tech-minded you may really enjoy doing those things. I decided to go back to the Instant Audio service.
Here is what I found:
1. With Instant Audio the process was nearly effortless. I can get a sound file onto my site within a couple of minutes.
2. Excellent technical support is available. They have a rapid response to e-mail questions.
3. They offer a way to allow satisfied customers call in and record their testimonials. I am looking forward to adding that feature.
4. The company has recently released Instant Video. This makes it possible to put video clips on your site. I plan to employ that technology on my site soon.
5. And, by the way, even though you will billed monthly for the service they make it very easy to get the whole service and tech support for FREE. All you have to do is refer three other subscribers to them.
6. Here is a video overview that helped me. Overview/Tutorial
I am developing a series of audio teaching clips for one of our “Featured Businesses.” This “Audio Library” demonstrates that the sky is the limit on what you can do with audio on your site.
In summary, it is important to know that talking to your site visitors is an excellent way to develop rapport, trust and to increase your sales. There are various ways to generate your sound files. Some are easier than others. Some are free, others require a one-time investment in a downloadable program and some are user-friendly services that have a monthly fee. You will have to decide which is best for you.
When I considered the idea of getting the professional online service with all the features, benefits and tech support for FREE it became a no-brainer for me.
Whichever way you decide to put audio on your site I would be interested in listening to your Web page talk. Perhaps we can even include a few examples of audio Web sites.