You may have already heard about the power of video for your business. Maybe you have heard it converts like gangbusters.
According to comScore, 64% of web visitors are more likely to buy a product online after watching a video.
How many times have you heard someone talk about a product or maybe you watched an unboxing video, and you thought, “I just have to have that.” Or you saw someone teach on a webinar and thought, “Yes, I need to learn from that person!”
The problem is too many people shy away from the spotlight and think they can’t do video.
Here, I’m going to share 10 things you can do to improve your video from what I have learned in 20 years in TV news. I’m Cheryl Tan and I am a former TV news journalist. Now I specialize in PR in Media Training.
Anyone can do this.
Right off the bat, I want to share a Bonus tip, which is: Be yourself.
You may admire this person or that person. This star or that celebrity. But the most memorable people I have interviewed aren’t the celebrities. They’re the real people, who are living real lives, telling real stories. And that can be you…
People will connect with the real you.
If you want to use video in the marketing of your business, or if you simply want to connect with people more through video, then consider these 10 steps:
1. Have a clear beginning, middle and end for your video
Do not wing it, please.
Create a list of topics and choose one that your audience will be interested in.
And then use this format:
Tell them what you’re going to tell them, tell them those things, and then tell them what you told them. Feel free to pepper your talk with stories, but keep a structure within your video.
Put another way, it’s the classic – beginning, middle and end – so people know what to expect. If they (and you) know what to expect, there’s no chance of rambling, getting too far off topic and having people click away.
2. Get to the point quickly
Like in the first 10 seconds. Whether it’s taped or live, make sure you know who you are trying to reach in the video, and give those people a topic they would be interested in.
If you’re targeting an audience of car buffs, for example, start by sharing the newest technology in vehicles today versus a video on the merits of making videos, like the topic of this blog post.
3. Focus on audio quality
People will turn away from your video if the audio is poor. Poor video sometimes can be overlooked, but poor audio cannot.
I have two microphones. I have a lavalier mic I picked up on Amazon. For videos I create on my laptop, I use the ATR 2100. I love them both.
Speaking of video, you can spend thousands of dollars on great equipment. For example, I was talking with a marketing firm about a video production company they had just hired. That team was using a Sony f300 for their videos. The camera base is $2,000. Just the base.
Until you get to a very high level, you don’t really need that kind of equipment to start making videos. Just use the video camera you probably always have with you anyway. Your smartphone.
4. Look your best
Here are my best tips on how to dress for video:
*Wear solid colors
*Keep away from distracting jewelry
*Powder is your friend
*Stay away from distracting backgrounds or white walls
5. Use light to your advantage
Lighting is pretty complicated and lighting experts can transform you. Lighting masters truly are your friends. But if you’re starting out, using light from a window is optimal, coming from the side and the front.
If you don’t have that, then put desk lamps in the front of you and on the side of you.
6. Look into the camera
If you can, place the camera at a little higher than eye level, so you’re looking up, instead of looking down.
When the red light turns on, people have a tendency to freeze. Be prepared for it and when speaking, look into the camera. If you’d rather look at yourself, that’s fine. But then make sure your eyes are steady and aren’t darting around.
And this is a really big thing: don’t fidget. Women have a tendency to flip their hair A LOT. If you fear that may be you, use hair spray. Fidgeting is very distracting.
7. Slow down
When nerves get the best of you, it’s easy to start talking quickly, as if talking quickly will make the pain go away faster. Truthfully, slowing down gives your brain the chance to process what you’re saying.
So, slow down. And even if it feels painfully slow to you, slow down even more. That will be just right.
Another thing about slowing down. Women sometimes complain they sound high-pitched. It’s just nerves. Slow down, your voice will come down an octave and all will be well.
8. Keep the energy up
One of the best compliments you can receive on your videos is if someone says, “I felt as if you were talking to me.”
A trick I learned from one of the on-air coaching consultants I used to have is: Imagine you are talking to ONE person – your best friend, your mom, your favorite client. And speak only to that person. Really talk to that one person and picture him/her responding to your words.
I mentioned earlier the importance of slowing down. If you slow down, you can inject a bit more feeling into your words. And while it may feel over-the-top to you, trust me, it isn’t. The result will be a high-energy video that people want to watch.
9. Give your audience something to do
This is the typical call to action. If you want the audience to go to your website, tell them to go to your website. If you want them to put future video times in their calendars, say it. Encourage people in your audience to stay connected with you through a clear call to action.
So here’s my call to action.
I know video is important to you, so I have created a checklist you can download right away that outlines these steps in an easy-to-view checklist. Click the button below to get it instantly.
10. Get moving!!!! Practice, practice, practice
Practice makes perfect. Get in front of a mirror and practice your script. Then turn on the camera on your phone and do it there, too. You will feel more comfortable the more times you get in front of a camera.
The video you produce today will be very different from the one you create next year, if you continue to create. Guaranteed.
Take a deep breath…
And hit record! I’m rooting for you!