Before You Get in Front of the Video Camera

by | Feb 12, 2019

With the growth of platforms like YouTube and content sharing on social media sites such as Facebook, video is a great way to convey information to your audience and make a more personal connection.

Indeed, it’s the perfect way to talk to clients and prospects and move beyond sharing text-based information. While those types of marketing materials still have a place in your business, they don’t come close to meeting the potential of connecting with people on a more personal basis.

If you aren’t sure where or how to start with video marketing, here are a few tips to get you moving in the right direction:

Your Appearance

Most people won’t consider doing videos for their business because, let’s be honest, they are worried about what they will look like on camera. The truth is, you look about the same on camera as you do in person. There are a few things you can do ahead of time to ensure that you will present the best you possible and be confident on recording day:

  • Test out your wardrobe.
  • Use a camera to see how your clothes look. Don’t rely on the mirror.
  • Be aware that the appearance of your clothes, colors, and necklines can all look a little different on camera.
  • Wear something that is comfortable but professional and makes you feel confident.

Mindset

Another struggle of getting in front of a camera is putting yourself in the right mindset. You have to put your nerves aside and take the leap. Having the right mindset does wonders for your confidence.

  • Know your why! Why are you doing this, what benefit will your clients get from it, what do you want to accomplish? This “why” needs to be bigger than your fear of being on camera.
  • Warm up – sing, dance, be silly while you’re setting up and getting ready. This will help you loosen up and bring a smile to your face.
  • Set an active intention before you press record. This needs to be focused on your audience and how you want them to feel:
    • examples: inspire, empower, entertain, connect, ignite, invite, inform

What are you talking about?

You’re creating this video for a reason and you want to make sure that reason is clearly communicated. Plan your talking points and have a general outline. Read your scripts out loud to someone in advance and tweak it so that it sounds like you and flows naturally.

If you don’t think that you can make it through your points without completely forgetting what you’re saying, you can use a teleprompter. However, there are a few things you need to realize about using a teleprompter:

  • Look straight into the camera lens. You don’t want to look like you are staring off into space rather than looking at the camera.
  • Keep it conversational and don’t make it feel read or too rehearsed, this can be hard and will take practice.
  • There are teleprompter apps from the App Store and Play Store, and a free teleprompter website that you can use right from your browser.

If you are not sure what to talk about, here is a quick list of ideas for financial advisors:

  • Share a big announcement
  • Provide a behind-the-scenes look
  • Draw on a whiteboard/chalkboard
  • Thank your audience
  • Tell a story
  • Recap a blog post
  • Share an office tour
  • Share your thoughts on a current event
  • Discuss a commonly asked question
  • Introduce your team
  • Conduct an interview with an attorney, CPA, or other professional
  • Talk about an upcoming or past seminar or client event
  • Provide insights, tips or tricks related to personal finance

Let your viewers know they can find out more about you and your firm on your website and social media. Don’t assume they can find you – give them the URL so they know exactly where to go.

Recording

You have your wardrobe picked out, you’ve got your mindset right, and you have your talking points – it is time to record!

Start out talking in a really conversational way about something personal and even unrelated to your topic. It needs to be something that makes you smile and gets you relaxed and warmed up. Once you are comfortable you can move into your topic. You can then edit out the warm-up intro during the editing phase.

  • Use the camera to talk to one person you really like.
  • Bring someone in the room with you, stick up a photo, or even bring your dog into your first attempts.
  • Drink lots of water (your mouth will get dry).
  • Take breaks if your mindset gets supercritical. Go for a walk and come back fresh.

There are a few steps you should take to be sure the audio quality of your videos is good. Record in a room that doesn’t have a lot of background noise, such as air conditioners, fans, printers, or other equipment that hums; if you’re using your phone to record, mute your notifications or even turn on airplane mode so your video isn’t interrupted by a text message or phone call; and you may want to consider using a shotgun mic or lavalier mic. Another simple but often overlooked step is to do a sound check before recording. Nothing’s worse than finishing your video only to find out the audio quality is terrible.

About Batch Recording

If you’re using a background setup and have put time into getting ready for recording I highly recommend batch recording. That way you don’t have to set up your lights, makeup, hair, camera, etc., for each video you create. You can use the same set up over a day (or more), and knock out a bunch of videos at one time. Just be sure to have a realistic goal for the number of videos you can shoot in a day. Also, think about changing your shirt between videos so it is not so evident that you’ve done them all in one day.

Wrapping Up

Your work is not quite over when the red light of the camera goes off. You need to put in a little extra to make sure that you get the most out of each and every recording session. So, once you have done a little victory dance that you did it, and no you didn’t die, then you can move into the wrap-up stage.

  • Focus on what you did well, not on what went wrong.
  • Write down at least three things you’re proud of in your filming.
  • Write down one or two things you’d like to improve for next time.

I hope this helps you in your video marketing journey. Last year I moved into the world of creating podcasts for my business; this year I hope to complete some video marketing pieces. I would love for you to step out of your comfort zone with me and see how fun and beneficial it can be.

Meet Crystal

Crystal Lee Butler, MBA
Crystal Lee Butler, MBA is a creative marketer and results-oriented business consultant with over a decade of experience collaborating with independent advisors. At Crystal Marketing Solutions, she delivers exceptional insights for financial professionals enabling them to create a consistent marketing presence so they can focus on the things that matter most to them.
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