I was one of them and I still remember the nervous excitement as I tried to sit still in front of the camera and talk about my first ebook.
Three or four years ago posting a ‘face to camera’ video on your opt in or squeeze page and home page was a must if you were ‘in the know.‘
The only problem was that making a video whilst you squirm doesn’t do much for your brand although you do get points for being authentic.
Things have moved on because people have got better at making DIY videos as has the equipment, and let’s face it videos are everywhere.
Of course it depends a lot on which niche you’re in and the expectations of your target audience. If you’re home based, marketing to other solos or small business owners you can definitely still create home made or DIY videos and that’s the best way to start unless perhaps you’re Kim Kardashian.
Even if you decide to go pro and have your video shot in a studio or pay a pro to come to you and set up the lighting and bring professional equipment, the most important thing is that you be natural on video.
This takes practice so starting out with DIY videos is a very good idea because you probably won’t want to pay a pro to video you practicing!
If you have a particular project and you need a series of videos done professionally then perhaps it’s time to consider hiring a pro or going into a studio but you need the budget.
I can think of several examples where now ‘famous’ people in their niche started out filming DIY style at home and now create their videos in a studio.
Marie Forleo now shoots her weekly Q&A Tuesday videos in a studio and it’s all very pro but it’s not that long ago that she had a postage stamp sized DIY video on her home page, shot in her little New York apartment with a tiny kitchen as the background.
Brendon Burchard now also shoots in his own flashy studio but he started off the same way as the rest of us.
What’s even more important than equipment & good lighting is of course your message.
Does this raising of the bar mean you can afford to ignore video?
Hmmm well maybe … but probably not, sorry.
Video is the communication tool of the future but you’ll be pleased to know there are many ways to create videos so you can find what’s comfortable and effective for you.
Firstly you need to decide which camera you want to use and you have a couple of easy and inexpensive options:
- Use the inbuilt camera on your laptop (Make sure your screen is straight or you’ll have a crooked video!)
- Use a FLIP video camera. This is how I started and the benefit of this is it comes with a table tripod so you can tilt the angle of the camera or film your videos from any location. You can pick one up from Amazon starting at approx. $160 and mine has lasted me years.
- Or the latest craze is to use your iPhone, if you have one, which when you think about it makes perfect sense because you take it everywhere you go so it’s great for filming from any location without having to take an extra piece of equipment.
If you’re camera shy you don’t have to use video on your opt in pages and home page, in fact the latest testing done at Ryan Deiss’s, Digital Marketing Labs, reveals that video can actually slow down conversion on a squeeze page.
Here’s when I recommend you do use some video:
If you’re an expert or face of your brand; an author, speaker or online marketer, video builds the relationship with your website visitors & potential customers very fast.
If you’re still not keen to do face to camera you can choose the powerpoint option where you create a powerpoint (this could be your sales letter or a presentation) and simply read it as you record the screen and this is called ‘screen capture.’
This is currently my favourite and I use a wonderful tool called Snagit to make these types of videos which is easy to use and inexpensive.
Whatever business you have it’s definitely a good idea to practice doing some video because it’s not going anywhere!
If you have a reporter style business model where you’re traveling or out and about a lot then a FLIP or iPhone camera is perfect for you.
YouTube is the obvious place to start so set up your channel there. The multi-channel marketing approach is the only way to go so I recommend you and your business have a presence there. You can watch one of my early videos here and you’ll see that actually my message hasn’t changed at all even though I was in a different business then: Rachel on YouTube
The easiest videos to start with are short videos (up to 3 minutes) where you’re sharing some tips on a topic. Make sure you focus on one big idea and include your website and niche keywords or tags in the description.
This is how your ‘perfect who’ will find you.
If you’re really creative you could consider making a ‘sock puppet’ video,
an animated video with goanimate.com or even a doodle video (a voice over as
Bonus DIY Video tips:
- Good lighting is critical and it’s best when natural light hits your face
- Try not to run over 3-4 minutes unless it’s a sales letter or indepth training video
- Plan your talking points before you start and try to be natural
- Use a CTA or call to action at the end of the video telling the viewer what to do next
- Direct people to a web page that is perfectly aligned with the call to action.
- Dial it up a little so be MORE of you – talk a little louder and emphasize your gestures more. (Think Hollwood
This week’s challenge is to get yourself set up to start making some videos or to update your skills if you haven’t shot one since the ‘face to camera’ video craze first hit.
If you enjoyed this post please share it on your fave social media and I’d love to hear what you think and what your experience has been with video so far.
Tags: author video marketing, Brendon Burchard videos, DIY video tips, expert video marketing, flip camera, Flip video camera, home made versus pro videos, iPhone video tips, Kim Kardashian videos, make home made videos, Marie Forleo videos, multi channel marketing, Ryan Deiss video tips, snagit review, video making tips, YouTube marketing tips