“First, there’s tremendous anxiety about getting in front of the camera.” The fear of being judged scares people away, even if they themselves are not the ones who will be on-camera.
Also, there is general fear of actually transforming video footage into a final product, driven by unfamiliarity with “the tools and expertise needed to make a complete project.” Often this boils down to the fear of investing time and money, not knowing how to increase your chances of having it pay off.
As with any endeavor, the key to facing your fears is to have the right information and to be well prepared. Here are 5 tips for dealing with the most common fears of video production:
Let me first say that this is obviously a completely legitimate fear, but it’s one whose time has passed. Dare I say that this idea is somewhat “old school”? For years this fear has held many business owners and marketers back from being in the game of modern marketing. So, the sooner you discard of that fear and take a step forward, the better off you will be.
Today there are a plethora of ways for individuals to share their video content very inexpensively or even for free! And, there are ways of proving or creating ROI for video now, by creating videos that promote a specific message and tracking performance back to that message via YouTube analytics, Facebook ad manager, or other video hosting platforms.
My advice for addressing this fear is to 1) discard it, and 2) select one specific way that you might be able to share a video, and dig into plotting exactly what message you would want to share, and how you would measure its success, and go from there.
2. You Fear Speaking On Camera
This is such a common fear, but one that can be easily faced with proper preparation, expectations, and with the help and guidance of video production professionals like directors, producers and editors.
If you’re planning to be on camera, here are several details you can prep for success in filming:
Be familiar with the script – If there is a script, you should practice it aloud until you are completely comfortable reciting it, whether memorized or not. Simply being familiar with what is being said can make your delivery smoother and more natural, and let you start to explore with a variety of intonations.
Be familiar with interview questions – Sometimes producers use an interview-style technique of asking you general questions and letting your answers form naturally. Be sure you have a copy of these questions beforehand and start thinking, and speaking aloud about all the different ways you might answer these questions.
Warm up your vocals – Enhance your comfort on camera by being ready to speak. Try some of these vocal exercises.
Let experts guide you – Working with a producer means you’ll have someone there to coach you through filming. Your producer will be the one writing or shaping your script or interview questions, and will be able to guide you through speaking so that he captures a range of dialogue on film.
3. You Fear How You Will Look On Camera
This is another completely reasonable fear, but one that can be worked on. First, it helps to remember that everything does look different on screen, and you will have to adjust and get used to what you are seeing. Second, there are several things you can do to improve how you look on camera:
Try out various wardrobe options – what you are wearing makes a huge impact on how you are perceived by viewers. The style, colors, cleanliness or neatness is definitely picked up on by your audience. Prepare a few different options and see how they look on-screen before you start filming.
Before filming, you can also gather opinions from various people you trust. Take a photo of yourself in each option and ask others which they prefer, so you can gather a consensus of what looks best.
A video production company can also bring in a wardrobe specialist to purchase an array of expertly styled wardrobe selections, or advise on the options you already own. They can also be present during filming to make sure everything looks perfect.
Hair and Makeup – Whether you’re a man or woman, you’ll want your skin and hair to look its best on camera. Be sure to time your skin and hair care to avoid sunburn or to have the ideal beard length or hair style, for example.
Hair and Makeup stylists can join your production to groom you on set. This is often a good idea because the lights on set can change how things look, and more makeup might be required, or some powder to reduce shine. A stylist can see how you look on the monitor and adjust from there.
Poise and Posture – This is another small detail that can make a big difference. Try out different seating or standing postures on-camera and see how they look. If you want to look professional, you’ll want to be seated upright.
Perhaps you want to look laid back. Well, there’s a subtle difference between laid back and downright sloppy. You may need to play with the amount of lean that looks right on camera.
Are you feeling overwhelmed by all of these tips so far? I hope not, but if you are just remember that the more preparation you do, the more fearless you will be about making a video. So tick these items off your list, and keep moving forward!
4. You Fear Working with a Video Production Company
Forming a relationship with any other person or group can be a nerve-wracking experience, especially when it involves a great amount of teamwork, and investment in time and cost. This is why selecting the right video production company is essential. Here are some tips on finding the right one:
Check out their work – Invest some time into looking at their online portfolio of video samples. Remember a company with a lot of experience may have a jillion samples to offer, so don’t be too quick to dismiss them based on one or two samples.
See if they have a diverse range of samples too. This can be helpful in finding a team that can adjust to your specific needs.
See if they are currently active – You’ll want to make sure that whoever you are considering to work with isn’t just someone who fills in spare bits of time, but rather a company that is actively engaged in producing video and keeping up with current video trends and technologies.
Do they share regular news or blog posts? What do their social media pages look like? Does it seem like you will get the personal attention and response that you deserve?
Make contact – The very best way to get comfortable with a video production company is to initiate the process of getting to know them. Reach out and ask for a meeting to discuss your potential video ideas and budget, and see what guidance they have to offer.
Any video production company should be willing to spend the time it takes to help you explore your goals, needs, budget and plan for leveraging your video to help your business. They can show you what they have to offer in a way that is tailored to your specific questions and interests.
Check out testimonials, or ask for references – A successful video production company has no shame in their game! They should have testimonials for you to see, and should be able to refer you to clients who are willing to share insight from their experience.
5. You Have an Overwhelming Fear of the Entire Production Process
The entire video production process can be a lengthy or detailed one, and this is the main reason why it’s so helpful to enlist professionals. Being prepared is one thing, but actually navigating the execution of that plan is a whole other ballgame!
Be familiar with the process – Familiarize yourself with the main phases of the process, and all aspects of the process that may apply to your specific project.
Be active in the process – If you’re working with a video production company, they will lead the way and do all of the work in coordinating, scouting, writing, casting, planning, scheduling and more. They will be happy to do the leg works and keep you in the loop at whatever level you desire.
For example, maybe you want to be involved in the exact scripting, but defer to them for styling with regard to wardrobe, graphics or other creative visual and audio choices. They will partner with you in whatever way makes you comfortable, but will ask your trust for anything you assign to them.
Start small – It’s very common for people to want to cover a huge variety of things in one video, but video is more successful when it’s succinct and conveys a very clear message. So, think about one objective you wish to achieve, and start with that. But, be sure not to cut corners that really matter in production.
No one says you have to be a fearless expert overnight. Get your feet wet with the process by starting small, and learn how to broaden your production scope from there.
Video has proven to be the most effective marketing and advertising tool, one that all businesses and professionals should be leveraging. So, if you’re still feeling fearful about getting started producing a video, there’s no better time to squash that fear and launch your video marketing strategy.
A professional video production company can help you get started, and guide you through every step of the process.
Mark Serao, Co-founder and Director of Production at Grey Sky Films, has had an eye on brand building from an early age. Inspired by the music industry and how record companies use a grassroots marketing strategy to build their artists/brands, Mark set out to apply those same fundamentals to the business community. Since 2001, Grey Sky Films has worked with businesses, both large and small, to increase market share by producing compelling video that evokes emotion and subsequently creates more sales opportunities.