The biggest fear marketers face when creating their first talking heads video is speaking on camera. If you’ve never done it before it can be a scary experience. The first few videos I created it was obvious I was reading from a script because I wasn’t looking directly into the camera lens. Even though I was able to articulate the words clearly the videos didn’t engage the audience. To create engaging videos takes a lot of practice. Even after producing talking heads videos regularly for one year I still feel I’m a beginner.
3 ways to avoid creating talking heads videos
1. Create a slideshow
This avoids creating a talking heads video altogether. It can be created very effectively by using PowerPoint or Keynote to create slides then record your computer screen with screen capture software such as ScreenFlow or Camtasia. These types of videos are very effective for creating online tutorials showing people how to do something.
2. Utilize online video software
Did you know there are software companies online that will enable you to create fairly slick videos with just a few clicks of your mouse. One of the most popular ones is Animoto for creating picture slideshows. The yearly subscription costs just $30 a year (includes the Animoto logo at the end of your video). Videoscribe is another popular online video service that creates animated drawings for a subscription of $22 per month or take the free trial to see how it works.
If the idea of creating your own talking heads videos is too daunting or you don’t have enough time consider outsourcing your videos. One of the easiest ways to do this is to search Fiver… an online service for hiring somebody to do the work for you for $5.00. Other alternatives include onlinejobs.com, scriptlance, www.onlinejobs.ph and elance.
So how do you overcome the fear of creating your first do-it-yourself talking head video?
1. Change your mindset
You are your own worst critic. You’ll say things like “you look too old, ugly, stutter, feel embarrassed, shy, awkward, have a funny accent, etc. My recommendation is “get over it.” Most folks don’t care what you look or sound like as long as you deliver quality content. Concentrate on your message instead of your appearance and you’ll do fine.
2. Use the equipment you have available
Instead of worrying about getting all the right equipment just use what you have ie your digital camera, free editing software on your computer and natural lighting. I shot my first few videos using my iPhone. I filmed everything outside, using the ear phone mic and holding the phone at arms length in front of me. As you can imagine the videos were a little shaky until I invested in a tripod.
3. Have a strategy
It’s easier to create a series of videos if you plan out your strategy beforehand. For instance one of my strategies is to research the major keywords associated with my business then create video tips associated for each keyword phrase. My purpose is to get the videos ranked in Google and YouTube to attract more traffic to my website.
4. Practice, practice, practice
Your first few videos are not going to be your best ones but you’ll improve as you create more of them. Try to improve one point for each new video you create. For example try memorizing your lines before you speak so you can articulate your content more clearly to your targeted audience.
5. Get feedback from others
You’ve probably heard the saying “you can’t see the forest for the trees.” It means you can’t have an objective view of your work if you’re too close to it. Ask for honest feedback from your Facebook friends or forums. I say “honest” because many will say “”great job” or keep going” but won’t offer honest criticism even if your video is terrible. Use criticism to improve your videos.
6. Invest in a video marketing course
One of my best investments was a video marketing course called “Video Traffic Academy“. Essentially it contains all the modules you need to create and market videos on YouTube. Learning from an expert video marketing coach will quickly reduce the learning curve resulting in gaining traffic and leads at a much faster pace rather than trying to learn it all yourself without coaching.
7. Join a Facebook Group
The Video Traffic Academy has a very active Facebook Group where you can receive instant feedback on your videos, ask questions and receive lots of tips from others. Instead of working in a vacuum by yourself you have a whole community of like-minded individuals willing to support you.
8. Be consistent
The key to creating better videos is to commit yourself to producing a new video on a regular basis. For example I create and upload at least one new video to YouTube each week. This not only helps generate new traffic but also pushes me to improve the quality of each new video.
9. Take action now
Reading all the “how-to” information often results in “paralysis of analysis.” Set aside a block of time to create your first few talking heads videos. Don’t worry how they’ll turn out because the main point is to get started then improve from that point onwards.