30-Day Business Resolution Challenge Follow-Up

March 8, 2013 by

It’s a good thing I’m giving up pop for my New Year’s Resolution because I just read that you need to run two miles to burn off a bottle of Coke.* The only way I’m running two miles is if there is a giant shoe sale at the finish line.

How are you doing on your 2013 Business Resolutions? Last month I gave you a 30-Day Business Resolution Challenge. I challenged you to spend at least 5 minutes a day on the Brokers International, Ltd. website ( viewing our “anti-resolution breaking” content.

Did you accept my challenge? The Brokers International, Ltd. (BI) website has the tools you need to help support your business year round. By getting familiar with the information provided, it can make some of your day-to-day tasks easier.

For example, our new Search & Compare tool let’s you quickly and simply enter your client’s annuity criteria to search and compare a wide range of options such as strategies and rates or minimum guarantees. Plus, after completing your search, you can request a quote for one or all of the options with the push of a button. Best of all, you can take the Search and Compare tool with you everywhere you go by accessing the web tool from your laptop, tablet, and even your mobile phone. Click here for a short introduction.

Now, while you spend some time checking out the site, I think I hear a pair of Italian leather wedge-heel pumps calling my name.





Kristine Garrett

Kristine Garrett joined Brokers International in 2012. She brought with her a strong background in sales and marketing that she uses to develop programs and create content to help grow your business. Kristine shares a hobby farm near Panora with her husband, farm critters and beautiful bulldogs.

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Tips for Creating a Good Video

March 5, 2013 by

You don’t have to be a pro to create a good quality video. Follow the simple tips below, and you’ll be on your way to creating a video you’ll be proud to display on your website and LinkedIn profile and company page.

What to wear:

  • Stick with solid colors.
  • Dress how you would dress for an office appointment.
  • Stay away from stripes and busy patterns—they can show up funny on the video.
  • Make your makeup a little heavier than normal (for women).
  • Check your teeth to make sure there isn’t any breakfast or lunch stuck in them.

Video set:

  • Make sure you have plenty of lighting—and fluorescents don’t look to good on most people.
  • Watch out for shadows—do a few test shots or have someone help you get set up.
  • Keep the background simple, but interesting—be mindful of your surroundings.
  • If you’re more comfortable standing while you talk, then you probably don’t want to be filmed sitting behind your desk.
  • You don’t need a fancy teleprompter—having your script on a laptop placed right below the camera works great. Just make sure you make the font big enough to read easily from where you sit or stand, and you might need someone to scroll it for you.


  • Be aware of background noises! If anyone else is in the room, make sure they’re quiet throughout.
  • A lavaliere mic that hooks up to your camera can be a good investment—it’s hidden and gets great sound quality.
  • Boom mics are a good choice if you’re filming more than one person because they can pick up all the sound then, you just have to be sure you’re in a room that doesn’t echo and you can eliminate background noise.
  • Speak at a normal level, and go slowly—don’t rush through the script.
  • Remember you’re talking to people not a camera, so use a conversational tone and think of regular inflection—don’t be monotone.

Final cut:

  • Make sure you do at least 3 takes to get the jitters out, and so you get used to the script.
  • You can just use the best take where you look and sound most comfortable and natural. OR if you want to get fancy, invest in some cheap video editing software to put together the best clips with some transitions in between.
  • You could also use images to illustrate certain points, while your audio just keeps going in the background.
  • You could add text to the beginning like a video title, include your name and business name when you first start talking, and include your website address at the end.
  • YouTube is the standard video hosting format, and you’ll need to upload your video to YouTube if you want to include it on your LinkedIn profile and LinkedIn company page.