Watched a few local business video blogs last week. Certainly the blogs allow for the dissemination of information and quick messaging to staff and to customers. The words we heard were all good messages. You and I both know, though, that communication follows the “93/7 Rule”. 7% of what is communicated comes from the words chosen. A full 93% comes from the image left behind from body language, nonverbals, facial expressions, and inflection (tone of voice). In our office, we’ve certainly seen the need to provide more seminars on how to create impressive videos. We had a video wall from GSEAV installed and everyone loves it. Watch for details; however, here are a few thoughts which may guide your next videos.
- “Shakey Cam” may be good for personal videos to friends and family, especially if you and they are young(ish). Not so much for business. Seriously, think about that. Do you want your business partners, clients, colleagues to see you that way? Do you want them to see how little you prepared for your oh-so-important message to them? Put some preparation into it. And if your paid professional videographer insists that you try “shakey cam” (or a digital camera on top of your computer screen, or loud noise in the background, or poor lighting) because it’s all the rage…find a new professional who really has your best interests in mind.
- Position some lights on your face. Around you. Above you. Not in sight of the camera, but on you or your product. We want to see you if you’re talking to us.
- Smile. Having a deadpan look doesn’t allow your personality to come through. Remember, in your video blog you are selling you.
- Look at me. And by that I mean, look into the camera. Pretend your audience is right there in the camera. Don’t look at your assistant who is off camera and to the left. The eyes are the window to the soul. When you look at me, I’m more likely to believe you. Better said, looking to the left or right or down is almost always seen as disingenuous. If you’re telling your staff that you appreciate them and they’re the best, but you won’t look at them (through the camera), they won’t believe you — nor will your customers.
- Keep your head straight. Stand up straight. Sit up straight. Casual, yes. Sloppy or stiff, no. Use gestures to support your message.
- Be professional. Don’t dance around, wag your index finger at the camera, make faces, or use poor grammar. And you’re not a nighttime talk show host, so don’t move into the camera like you’re seriously invading your viewer’s space.
- And, one more item, be mindful of what’s behind and around you. Find a contrasting (and fairly blank) wall; well-painted or stained wood might be nice. Not too much background please, but a small picture or company name might be okay. Make sure you’re not in front of broken or crooked miniblinds, or a white wall (you’ll look washed out), or that there’s a flower pot or something else just above your head. Try not to have others who are not on a microphone talk or yell in the background.
All in all, consider the image you want to portray. It doesn’t have to be stiff and formal — it just takes a little preparation, which all of your customers and employees expect of you. Make sure your casual short business video allows you to be seen as the confident, consummate professional you are every day. If you’re looking for a couple of good examples, email me and I’ll provide that.