You may have noticed something a little different about our blogs lately! We decided to start offering a new video format, along with our traditional written blog.
Why? Because videos are more personal, and our founder, Evie Dross, wants you to feel like you are part of the family. That starts by getting to know her a little better. So, she has stepped in front of the camera to share with you some of our best advice for helping you reach your business goals.
And guess what … a piece of that advice is to start creating your own videos. People love to watch and share videos, so they can add some real marketing power to your content strategy.
Plus, you don’t need some overly produced, expensive video to share with customers. In fact, your smartphone and some decent editing software is all it takes to create meaningful content that both educates customers and builds credibility for your brand.
The key, however, is to ensure that you represent your brand well, by being authentic and real. So how do you do that? We’ve got some tips:
Prepare and practice
Videos can most certainly be more informal and fun. You don’t want to sound like you are reading from a teleprompter or that you’ve memorized a script, but you also don’t want to bluff your way through your presentation. You can create cue cards to glance at in case you lose your train of thought but memorize as much of the content as you can.
The great thing with video is that if you have a bad take, you can hit delete and start over, so watch yourself with an open mind and look for things that bother you. For example, count how many “ums” and “uhs” you say or any distracting movements you make, and actively work to eliminate them from your presentation.
Invest in the right equipment
Both the sound and visuals must be crystal clear. Ensure whatever device you use to do the recording produces exceptional videos. Also make sure you have a solid Internet or Wi-Fi connection so that the video or audio doesn’t cut in and out.
If you are filming from your phone or digital camera, you must purchase a tripod to prevent shaky images and to position the camera to capture the best angle of you. An inexpensive pocket-sized version is usually all you need.
Film in a well-lit area
No one wants to strain to see you in a dark room. To get the best look, choose a location with diffused natural light—like sunlight through a curtain—preferably that is facing the front of you. Artificial light can do some weird things to the color of your skin.
Look for distractions
When you are ready to film, position your tripod roughly two feet from you to capture your face and upper body. Start recording and pay attention to what people can see and hear around you.
Obviously, you don’t want a messy backdrop as that could make you look unprofessional. Additionally, you don’t want anything in the background—noise or otherwise—that could take people’s attention off you.
Take a close look and listen and then eliminate anything that people might find odd, inappropriate, confusing or generally distracting. For example, a blinking light on a laptop or the sound of the HVAC kicking on.
Also, avoid bold patterns, sparkly clothing and jewelry, as they can be very distracting. If you love daring patterns, go for it, but don’t film in front of another pattern, as the combo could look horrible on video.
Watch your body language
With the right equipment and ambiance, now it’s all about you and how you present yourself. That can be the hardest part.
Make sure you are sitting upright, with your back and neck straight and your shoulders square. Don’t fidget, play with your hair or face, tap your pen or any other nervous ticks. All that is supremely distracting, but it also makes you appear unconfident or like you don’t believe what you’re saying. While you aren’t talking with viewers face-to-face, you can still make “eye contact” by looking directly into the camera. Just be sure to smile, blink naturally, and use some natural movements. You don’t want to look like a robot.
Finally, take a moment to get camera ready. Check your teeth and nose, smooth your hair and straighten your clothes. Then give yourself a few minutes to breathe and settle down before you start recording.
Remember: The more you practice, the better you’ll get, and soon enough the videos will be quick and easy to produce.