Are you planning on making a video or appearing on someone else’s video, and you want to do whatever you can to prepare so that you look your best? Have you done a significant amount of research, and you’re wondering if there is more that you can do so that when the time comes, you appear confident and collected?
If so, I know exactly what your next move should be.
If I had to guess, the learning process has likely been pretty smooth and easy so far – you have probably spent a fair amount of time reading through the internet and watching videos about what you should do when you’re on camera. Maybe you have watched videos leisurely, letting their voice float around as background noise while you folded laundry. Or perhaps you’ve taken a more active approach, paying diligent attention to the information you’ve found and taking notes throughout the duration. Maybe your learning method falls somewhere in between. The point I’m trying to make here is that no matter how mindful your learning experience has been so far, this has been the easy part.
Although ‘easy’ is comfortable, just as it goes every time, all good things must come to an end. But don’t worry, the true beauty of these lessons is just over the horizon, and it’s time that we go there!
So now, I’m going to ask YOU to do something! That’s right, the time for passive learning has come to an end. And don’t get me wrong, I know from experience that most of you are not going to want to do it. Most of you won’t do it. But trust me: this is the turning point when you decide if you’re going to get a lot out of these tips you have learned, or a little. So now is the time that you have to make the choice and decide how badly you want to succeed.
If you want to get the most value out of these lessons, I want you to do something for me that isn’t just sitting back, clicking, and reading or watching videos. I need you to record yourself speaking. That’s right, it’s your turn for the spotlight. I know that you’ve heard the phrase “practice makes perfect,” and I want you to know that the world’s greatest speakers didn’t become this way overnight. For this exact reason, you too need to pay your dues and put in the work before it’s time to film your final product.
You probably have already created a bunch of excuses in your head of why you can’t, won’t, or don’t need to make your own practice video, but I promise you are not an outlier. Although practice makes perfect, practice isn’t perfect. So put your pride away and make yourself an imperfect video.
The subject matter doesn’t matter.
If your lack of an Oscar-worthy speech is your first excuse as to why you won’t make a practice video, I don’t want to hear it. I don’t care what you’re speaking about – the subject honestly doesn’t even matter yet. I just need you to talk for one minute or so about something. The purpose of this practice session is less about the content of the video and much more about how you are presenting yourself on camera. We don’t always know what we look like when speaking about something, so allowing yourself to observe from the viewer’s perspective is all that matters.
Although the subject is not very important, this is still a good opportunity to banter about the topic material that you plan to discuss in the future. You could speak about your business, your product, your service, your campaign, or whatever it is you do. Additionally, you could just talk about something that interests you or something you already know a lot about. All I want you to do is talk about it for one minute and record yourself on video.
Video quality also doesn’t matter.
If your lack of a state-of-the-art video camera is your next excuse, don’t even bother. The quality of the video doesn’t matter. It also doesn’t matter if you’re not a professional videographer and you don’t quite hit the perfect angles. You can use any device with a camera to record, including your cellphone, webcam, or iPad. As long as you can press record and stand in front of it, it should do the trick.
Try out some of my suggestions
Now that you have decided what you will talk about and have set up your recording device, it is time to record your minute-long video. Most importantly, while you’re doing so, I want you to try your best to implement as many of the tips and tricks you’ve picked up throughout your research on how to look great on camera.
There are many things you can focus on during your video – put a smile on your face, don’t let your eyes dart all over the place, be mindful of your head movements and body movements, keeping your hands moving. Think back to all you have learned so far from your research and refer to your notes so that you can give your best effort to this recording. Try to look comfortable, confident, and relaxed. The more you practice, the more natural these steps will become.
Review and reflect
After you have completed your video recording and you feel that you have tried your best, I want you to take the time to sit down and watch the video so that you can reflect. While it can be difficult to pick up on your own actions during the recording process, it can be much easier to see your strengths and weaknesses when watching yourself from the third person. Utilizing this practice video can help you figure out both what you are like and what you are not like, which will only benefit you in the future.
Look, I know that you might be thinking that recording a practice video is unnecessary and that you’ve learned everything you need to know through research. You may even be tempted to just skip ahead to the real recording before taking the time to practice. Despite these feelings, I want you to know this: if you record this one-minute video for me now, you will reap huge rewards for getting in such valuable practice.