One of the fastest ways to become a better shallow water bass fisherman is through mastery of casting mechanics. Jacob Wheeler gave Wired2Fish an excellent flipping and pitching tutorial in this video and expands that lesson with 2 additional techniques: 1) the roll cast, and 2) pitch skip.
The purpose of both is to get baits into tight areas in and around cover -- think docks, flooded bushes, laydowns or any overhanging cover. Wheeler goes into detail on how to execute each with emphasis on the pitch skip, which allows you to skip baits in tight quarters deeper than any other technique. Whereas the roll cast uses wrist rotation, the pitch skip requires whole-body momentum and follow through to pull off.
Equipment is very important. Wheeler recommends rods in the 7-foot range and under when you're just getting started. He details how to calibrate your casting reel magnetic brake and tension dial for reduced backlashing, a key step when getting started.
Bottom line, both techniques excel at getting baits into exact spots in heavy cover with the pitch skip being best for hard-to-reach spots you couldn't otherwise reach. Couple this with a new style of lure and you're showing bass something they haven't seen which ultimately leads to a few more bites.