Celebrity is powerful. Everyone wants to be an online star. There’s no avoiding it; whether it’s a sultry clip on Instagram, ‘Woo Grrlz’ having a fun night out and sharing it on Facebook or someone’s super helpful ‘how to’ tips on YouTube, it’s video and it’s everywhere. So much traffic on the Internet is shifting to video (infographics abound with statistics on this) that there is a lot of pressure to just create and post content. Judging by what we see, (with our keen professional eyes) a lot of it is ad hoc, low quality and not a great reflection of the person or business connected to the content. Ladies, you don’t want to be one of these.
Quality is easier to achieve than you think and it’s also not expensive. We don’t want to see you shamed on social media with embarrassing footage, and a good guess is that you don’t want to either. With this in mind, we’ve assembled some guiding principles that the professionals use to develop a strong following.
Know Who You Are
Here’s where so many people trip up, and understanding this, you can avoid falling at the first hurdle; be ‘on brand’. Whether it’s your personal image or that of your business, video is a reflection of who you are and what you represent. Define this and put it forth on camera each and every time. The consistency builds your image and viewers return again and again because they know what to expect, even if your brand is ‘unexpected’. Classy always beats sassy, but doesn’t mean you can’t have fun with your audience. Treat every video post as an opportunity to introduce yourself to a new audience, since someone may stumble upon you at Episode 24 instead of Episode 1. A familiar thread should run through each video.
Explore The App Store
The video mode on your smartphone does an average job. For the cost of coffee with a girlfriend you can install applications that give you much more cinematic control. Why is this important? The better the image quality, the better you look. We love using Filmic Pro (works on both iOS and Android) for the ability to adjust the same settings as if you had a more expensive DSLR camera. There are dozens of video apps from cinematic tools to time lapse and compositing. Try a few out and experiment with them. Only use content that matches your brand and marketing plan. No one needs to see the stuff that should stay on the ‘cutting room floor’.
Learn Basic Skills
No camera can focus as fast as the human eye, so don’t try to whip around a room shooting all the ‘AMAZING! OMG I can’t believe what I’m seeing.’ stuff in ten seconds. It’s just a blurry mess. Frame your shots, use steady movements and make sure what you’re recording is lit well enough. The viewing experience is much improved and let’s go back to the brand issue…does the quality of the video represent me well? If not, don’t use it.
We also need to quickly address the audio issue. Frankly the mics in smartphones are not great for video. Too much room noise, wind, and often pointing 90° to what you’re filming. Third-party microphones are easy to find and make a HUGE difference. If you’re saying something important, or want people to get the full impact of what you’re shooting, it’s key that they hear nice clean sound. Even if you just need ambient room tone, a 3rd party mic is preferable to the built-in mic. Make sure your mic is TRRS (it has three black bands on the pin) so it can take in sound through the headphone jack.
Get On Camera
Seems obvious, since you can’t be an online star if people don’t see you shine. If you’ve got a fear of looking unpolished or feel uncomfortable being the centre of attention, stop stressing. Remember that no one, not even Hollywood actors started off fantastic on camera. It’s a developed skill. How do you improve? Write out a script. Your personal story is a good one. Now set up the camera and record it in the privacy of your home, office, or wherever you won’t be disturbed. Do it over and over. Try different presentation styles, use lots of energy and speak in a relaxed friendly manner. The more you practice, you’ll know that you’ll sound confident and look comfortable.
Top content that gets more hits, likes and shares, delivers on the WIIFM factor. What’s In It For Me is what your audience is asking, whenever they interact with you. Just like any of your other social posts, to be an online star your videos have to give value. This is like a feedback loop to your rising stardom. You can be the Queen of product reviews, top tips, how-to skills or interviewing thought leaders. Whatever your content is, make sure your audience is getting great take-away. Then ask for comments, or follow through so you can gauge how you’re succeeding.
Video is a huge part of social media and if your goals are to be a top vlogger, brand ambassador or to feed your marketing with quality content, there’s no more powerful way to do it. With minimal investment in equipment, but some thought and effort in your objectives and image, your star will rise further and faster than much of the content already out there.
Vitamin Media is a Gold Coast based video production house with over twenty-five years experience in television and marketing. Their passion is helping people and businesses share their stories with moving pictures. They offer group and personal training for DIY videography and gear to equip you for professional level results. For more information or chat about how video can assist you call 1 800 422 932 or firstname.lastname@example.org