Our 9 Golden Rules When Filming Yourself...
Several of our clients have been asking for advice on how to self-shoot video content, which they have then be sending to us for us to edit together and polish up.
This is a great way to reach people and maintain your presence online, and I thought it would be helpful to share some key tips when filming yourself talking to camera (also known as "talking heads", or "piece to camera").
So here are our 9 golden rules:
1. When setting up your phone or camera, sit with the light in front of you so that you’re not just a silhouette. No one wants to struggle to see your face and you’re not auditioning to be a vampire. We always work on the basis that the person on screen should be brighter than their background. Natural light is great- so face a window.
2. Pay attention to that background and what is in the shot - the viewer’s eyes will be drawn to anything they can see behind you and will use it to draw conclusions about you. Perhaps tuck that copy of Fifty Shades of Grey behind the National Geographic photography book…
3. Be as upbeat and engaging as you can. People will forgive bad quality video if it is fun to watch.
Above: a self shot video for the University of Law. Gary followed our advice to the letter!
4. Keep the video short and to the point. If you can say it all in 60 seconds you’re doing brilliantly. 90 seconds is good. 3 minutes and you’ve lost people. If you have a lot to say, break it down into several videos and drive people to the other content with links and a call to action.
5. Include a strong call to action at the end of the video! What do you want people to do after watching your video?
Above: This is the call to action on the video content we are currently creating for the 2021 Brighton Marathon. Very clear and concise- it’s Brighton Marathon, it’s on the 18th April and you can enter now.
6. Get straight to the heart of what you want to say and don’t overwhelm people with information. We work on the basis of 3 key takeaways from a video. Any more than this and they will forget important stuff… Video is a great medium for conveying information, but don’t abuse this. Decide what are your key points that you want to convey and stick to them - don’t waffle on!
7. Pay attention to your sound. People will forgive bad imagery, but bad sound is a real turn off. Sit in a quiet room, turn the radio off, and speak clearly. If you can, choose a room with soft furnishings and carpet to avoid echo.
8. As your mother used to say - don’t slouch. If you are leaning back and look disinterested people will read your body language and turn off. We like to interview people standing up as it gives the interviews more energy. If you can stand up for this then that’s good.
Above: Ceres Power got a team member to self shoot this video. We asked Shubi to stand whist talking to camera to give him energy and authority.
9. If you have existing content of your products, facilities or anything on the subject of what you’re talking about, add that into the video. If you don’t know how to do that then ask us!
If you’re struggling to create video that you’re happy with, then get in touch and I’d be happy to give you some pointers. We’re also working with several clients such as the ones in the photos above who are getting team members to record content and we’re editing it all together and giving it a polish. We’re always happy to help however we can!