The following video is part of a special series in which Motley Fool analyst Brendan Byrnes and "Options Whiz" Bryan Hinmon discuss how to make 2012 the year YOU master the market.

In this edition, Brendan and Bryan analyze Cisco. Sometimes investors love a company, but are hesitant to simply go long or short in the stock. Options can be a great way to lower an investor's risk, and also increase a stock's upside. In this series, part of our Options Education Month, Motley Fool Options analyst Bryan Hinmon and fellow Fool Brendan Byrnes discuss how to benefit from Cisco's future prospects while controlling its risk.

For more details on how to trade Cisco using similar options strategies with as much potential or more, just click here.

You'll be directed to the Motley Fool Options Whiz -- our interactive "Options U" designed to teach you to trade options sensibly, with a minimum of risk, and all the resources of The Motley Fool behind you -- all 100% FREE!

This article represents the opinion of the writer, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a Motley Fool premium advisory service. We’re motley! Questioning an investing thesis -- even one of our own -- helps us all think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer.