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HMC NEWS: How to perform well on video

For many people, the idea of being photographed or appearing on video is enough to make them want to hide behind their desk – or pull a sickie at work.

However, speaking on video doesn’t need to be painful. In fact, with preparation, some smart tips and a dash of confidence, it can actually be quite fun.

At HMC Communications we often help clients with video work. Video is an engaging way to share your message and tell your story. It’s something that can be shared on social media, loaded to your website or sent to media alongside a press release. In fact, most online news outlets won’t run a story without a visual aspect – definitely a photo, and preferably a video. If you can supply good quality video content, it can help your press release get pick up.

So, how do you come across well on video, without having to do 101 takes?

  • Preparation is key. Know your key messages and what you want to say. Whittle it down to 3-5 main points.
  • Make notes, but don’t rely on them when you speak to camera. It’s better to know what you want to say, and then speak from the heart. I’ve seen people so caught up in sticking to their notes, they trip over their words, and get caught up in getting it “perfect”. Then, when I tell them (firmly but kindly) “no notes, just talk to me”, the result is ten times better.
  • Trust yourself and your knowledge, and the words are more likely to flow naturally.
  • Relax. Breathe. Imagine you are talking to a trusted colleague or friend.
  • Think about your audience, what do they want to hear?
  • Be yourself, be genuine. Don’t be afraid to share your enthusiasm for a new discovery, or your concern about a pressing issue affecting your industry. It helps others relate to your message.
  • Remember that the interviewer/questions are often cut out during the editing process. You want to ensure you use full, complete sentances when speaking, and mirror back the question content when replying.
  • Don’t forget to introduce yourself and your job title at the beginning

Other things to think about with video

  • Be aware of lighting, background, check there is nothing funny between your teeth, your jacket is askew or your lipstick missed the mark (hopefully, a good videographer will be observing all this for you).
  • The audio needs to be good quality – research shows people will switch off if the audio is compromised, so standards need to be high. If there is any loud noise in the background, it can distract (at best) and overwhelm or drown out your content (at worst). I had a nightmare scenario in my early days of doing video – recording a group of international visitors on a farm – when I got back to the office, I found that the audio had been comprimised by the wind. It didn’t seem too bad at the time of filming, but the microphones picked up the wind and it was very distracting, and ruined the video unfortunately. A good learning experience however.
  • Consider a professional videographer if your budget allows. HMC Communication has a pool of excellent, experienced videographers and subcontractors we can recommend.
  • We also have our own high-spec digital SLR camera and video, with tripod, and the expertise to make video in-team, if budget is a concern.