Podcast Episode 18: Get Comfortable With Discomfort – Make a Video

how to get started with video marketing

Sometimes video is the absolute best form of content, especially if you need to show how to use something or perform something. One of the things almost impossible to explain in written only would be sport technique.

That’s how I started making friends with video.

video-marketing-tips

I have to say, often times for me it’s a lot about laziness, too, not to put my podcasts on video as I would have to do something with my hair, put on some makeup etc. But the truth is, what’s more important is the content, not your outlook… would you agree?

Thanks so much for listening!

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How to get started making videos if you’re not comfortable with camera at all

Previously I asked the question “What’s your favorite format, text, audio or video”, and while my readers as consumers like video, apparently not everyone is quite as comfortable making one of their own.

Sometimes it is the absolute best form of content, especially if you need to show how to use something or perform something. One of the things almost impossible to explain in written only would be sport technique.

I actually started making videos by shooting my warmup and kettlebell exercises. In the oldest ones I first show a technique, then write it out and then show again, but I don’t talk. Later I’ve made dozens of videos just for my own students, explaining some detail they’re struggling with.

I gradually learned to tolerate my own flaws on video as I’ve watched them over and over again. My own biggest challenge has always been that I tend to talk a lot, instead of making it concise and to the point. Having a script helps with that.

Here’s how anyone can get started:

Step #1: Audit

Start by picking a topic you love, something you could talk for hours about.

It doesn’t matter if it’s not the topic you teach, because the purpose of this exercise is not to produce fantastic footage for YouTube, but to teach you to be comfortable with the camera.

So press “Record”, smile and start talking. Forget about the camera, just explain your thing as if you were talking to your closest friend. She knows you and the topic is something you know inside and out, so there’s nothing to be nervous about.

Then press stop and take a look at what you have.

Step #2: Analyze

You probably feel like your voice doesn’t sound like you at all and you may have annoying maneuvers. Perhaps you’re holding your head in a position which is accentuating your nose you don’t like (try adjusting the camera!), wave your hands or you keep  repeating a word such as “like”, “you know” or “actually” which after a while starts to irritate even yourself.

Don’t criticize: After all, this is your first time. Instead focus on technicalities and try to stay analytic. You don’t need to show this to anyone.

Step #3: Rehearse

Shoot another round, but this time try to keep that maneuver to a minimum. You’re still talking about your favorite topic to your best pal, so you don’t need to focus on memorizing that any more than you would need to focus on breathing.

Repeat this exercise enough times until you’ve gotten used to your own voice and have fixed the most annoying distractions.

Step #4: Ramp up

When you’ve made friends with the camera, you can move to the topics you teach. Again, I suggest you start from the ones you know best, and this time you may want to work a script first. Here’s one structure you can use to craft a presentation or an interview.

You can (and you should) still pretend you’re talking to the friend – that’s what Sir Richard Branson does, too!

And you can also use notes if you need, that’s quite ok. Or shoot multiple takes and edit afterwards if needed.

Practice makes perfect – though you may want to remember no such thing exists.

Besides, most people don’t really notice the “flaws” you do.

Just think about that friend of yours who always starts by pointing them out, for instance she walks you through the house and shows every detail that’s somehow off, but you would never notice those if she didn’t tell you that “This wallpaper is slightly too dark, here’s a one millimetre gap and those curtains should be mushroom and not beige…” Ring a bell?

I hope you find this useful and I hope to see your video on air some day, feel free to link it in the comments!

And if you have tricks you use when speaking in public or on video, please share them with us, too!

20 Comments

  • Patricia Weber

    Reply Reply October 21, 2014

    I like how you said, “Make friends with the camera.” I loath making videos which is why my most recent videos are whiteboard videos. This is a useful post Eve in the sense it speaks to things we ALL worry about which in reality, can improve over time. There are so many speakers who pretend they are speaking to a friend – that’s because it’s effective! Thanks.

    • Eveliina

      Reply Reply October 21, 2014

      You’re welcome Pat!
      Fear of failure is so futile with something like this, but I totally understand that when people are always busy, something like rehearsing to talk to a camera may feel overwhelming. In that case you can always practice while doing something you would do anyway, like cooking. I used to entertain my family especially at the summer house, pretending to do a cooking show while I was making a dinner. Just make it fun and again – forget about the camera. Tell someone to set it up for you, that best friend for instance. That helps, too.

  • Susan Cooper

    Reply Reply October 21, 2014

    Hi Eve, this is great advice because unless your from Hollywood, or a teenager, you probably are not fond of taking pictures or videos of yourself. And the only way to get better, and get over the stage fright, and the annoying habits and ticks, is to to it over and over and over…. Until you are so comfortable on camera you don’t even notice it is there.

    • Eveliina

      Reply Reply October 22, 2014

      Unlike my generation and those before me, these days “everyone” holds a camera at all times. I remember when I started my first style blog and I didn’t exacly like smiling in photos (my teeth were crooked, eyes too small and probably there was something wrong with the nose as well), but I realized that if I don’t I just look tired (not mysterious like I intended). So I started practicing by smiling at my reflection every morning. Eventually it changed my whole being and I actually became a happier person. I didn’t have to pretend it anymore, in fact I usually smile first, regardless the situation.

      Right now I’m trying to improve my social skills. I know it’s a matter of practicing like everything else.

  • For an introvert, this can be especially hard :) I like the idea of framing it so it’s more like talking to a friend. And I also think that most folks are a bit forgiving of minor flaws. I know when I see one, I can relate to that little flaw as simply being human:)

    • Eveliina

      Reply Reply October 22, 2014

      That’s right, we’re just human and that’s only a good thing!

  • Jeannette Paladino

    Reply Reply October 22, 2014

    It will really help if you enlist a friend to be with you to critique your performances. It’s very hard to judge ourselves. We tend to be too harsh. Also, it’s helpful to actually have an audience to establish a real connection.

    • Eveliina

      Reply Reply October 22, 2014

      Sometimes it creates too much pressure to start out even with a best friend present, but I totally agree (s)he should participate when the worst part is over, which is just to get started.

  • maxwell ivey

    Reply Reply October 22, 2014

    HI eve; you gave some excellent advice there. I especially love your reminder that perfection is unattainable and that those minor flaws aren’t noticed. to me i notice audio when it is too loud or too soft; so a voice level test and replaying the video after it is uploaded are good moves too. and when i was reading i was reminded of seinfeld. if george wanted jerry’s opinion but didn’t want him to be too critical he would say he wanted an over view. another thing i know about myself is taking a shower shaving and putting on good clothes before i record gets me in the right mindset. thanks for sharing, max

    • Eveliina

      Reply Reply October 22, 2014

      That’s a great piece of advise Max, taking the time to prepare and how the outlook affects on the mindset as well! Thank you!
      And I like the Seinfeld terminology (I haven’t watched it much but I know the characters). That best friend should point out if there’s something – one thing – that pops.

  • Lenie

    Reply Reply October 22, 2014

    Well Eve, I’m glad I gave you the nudge, even though I have no ideas of making videos. I have just started an online photography course and with your information I am looking forward to the day I’ll be making one.

    • Eveliina

      Reply Reply October 22, 2014

      It was just something about your response that gave me the idea, and I just love it when it happens.

      I’m looking forward seeing the results of your studies – AND the day you move on to videos :)

  • Laurie Hurley

    Reply Reply October 22, 2014

    I love doing video – for me it’s quicker and easy. Maybe because I am an extrovert and not camera-shy. I am currently in a fabulous class called Local Video Marketing and will be offering video services to my clients. It’s a ton of fun! My advice – just be yourself – you’d be surprised how non-judgmental people are when it comes to video, mostly because they are too shy to do it themselves!

    • Eveliina

      Reply Reply October 24, 2014

      So true Laurie!

  • Meredith Wouters

    Reply Reply October 23, 2014

    These instructions are great! In my case, though, I imagine they are easier said than done. I’m sure this is one of those things that gets easier with time and practice. If I ever decided to make a video, I’ll be back here to go through your steps!

    • Eveliina

      Reply Reply October 24, 2014

      Thanks Meredith! You could give a quick sneek peak to your process, creates a whole different connection with people visiting your blog when they find you from Etsy.

  • thanhnien.com.vn

    Reply Reply December 15, 2014

    Saved as a favorite, I really like your blog!

    • Eveliina

      Reply Reply December 15, 2014

      Thanks!

  • conchiform

    Reply Reply January 27, 2015

    It’s actually a nice and helpful piece of information. I am happy that you just
    shared this useful information with us. Please keep us up to date
    like this. Thanks for sharing.

    • Eveliina

      Reply Reply January 27, 2015

      You’re welcome!

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