If you’re a solopreneur, freelancer or anyone who uses social media as a business tool (which should be ALL of you!), you’ve probably noticed that video content is bigger than ever.
In a world with so many people creating videos, how do you stand out from the crowd and attract your ideal client?
First let’s talk about…
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Why you should be doing video
Cisco estimated that by the end of 2019, 80 percent of all internet traffic will be video content and it’ll continue growing exponentially. Quite frankly, if you’re not using video in your business already, you’re behind.
But it’s not too late! Stop letting your lack of confidence on camera and your fear of “looking like an idiot” leave your business in the dust. That fear is minimizing your potential reach and revenue.
Instead, you can use video to your advantage to build your brand authority in your field.
Rather than just posting written copy with a random meme or a stock photo that gives no sense of you being a real human, getting on camera allows your audience to get to know the you behind the brand.
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Why you’re passionate about what you do and why you’re the one they should hire.
People have become so accustomed to seeing ads on their social media feeds that they scroll right past them. That’s why the trend is shifting towards “intimacy marketing”, which is a more personal experience for your customers.
What’s more personal than letting your audience get to know you and your expertise through video?
People buy based on emotion. They buy from the person they most resonate with, the person who is in alignment on how to achieve their goals and who is going to collaborate in a mutually beneficial way.
And not be a nightmare to work with!
So we’re here to give you tips and techniques that’ll have you hitting record and making compelling video content that attracts your ideal client in no time.
The BIGGEST mistake when making video content
Sometimes the competition in the marketplace can feel saturated. There are a lot of freelancers doing graphic design, digital marketing, copywriting and pretty much every other online job you can imagine.
In an attempt to promote their brands, a lot of people make the same horrific mistake when making their videos.
They see the top two or three people in their field making content and they just emulate them (personality, style, and all!) leaving us watching a bunch of videos that all look like watered down versions of each other.
But instead of coming across as a second-rate [Insert name of top influencer in your field], you have the opportunity to distinguish yourself by instead being your most authentic you! If you show up as your best self, you will never face saturation.
So now that you know why video is so important, let’s get to the goods!
How to attract your ideal client using video
Two words: Customer research.
Where does your ideal client hang out? In Facebook groups? On your social media profiles? Specific blogs or other communities? Go to these places to get in tune with what your ideal client wants and what their fears are.
Some examples of powerful customer research questions are: “What’s your #1 Fear about X?” “What are the top 3 things you want to know about X?” “What’s your #1 Obstacle when it comes to X?”
Once you get these answers, you’ll know exactly what your ideal client cares about and can start making video content addressing these fears, obstacles, and desires. Let them tell you what they want.
How to stand out from the crowd with your content
You know the people you admire who look so natural and conversational on camera? Yeah, they prepare. All the pros have a process, and you should too if you want to level up. It’s hands down the best way to reduce anxiety, avoid rambling, and make your videos stand out from the crowd.
Ironically, most people barely think about what they’re going to talk about before hitting the record button. They try to do it on the fly thinking they’ll magically be brilliant.
What ends up happening? It takes them 20 takes, two hours, and a mini meltdown to make what was supposed to be a two minute video! As a solopreneur, you know that time is money… so stop wasting time because you didn’t have a preparation process.
But we have a gift for you… the exact preparation process we give our clients to crush it on camera! Every. Single. Time.
The first step is to brainstorm all of your ideas for your video in bullet point form. This is a stream of conscious for you to exhaust all of your ideas, so don’t censor or limit yourself in this stage. This is not meant to be a line by line script, just bullets.
2. Trim the fat
This is one of the most overlooked steps and how five minutes of content ends up being a 15 minute video of rambling. People have short attention spans and your goal is to keep them captivated through the entirety of your video.
In this step, you’ll take your brainstormed list and start condensing the ideas into more clear, concise bullets in the order you’re going to go through them.
Some great questions to ask yourself in this stage are:
- How can I say this more simply?
- How can I say this more quickly?
- How can I say this with a story?
- What will make it impossible for the right viewer to stop watching?
If there are any bullets that seem unrelated to this video, move them to another document. Now you have additional video content ideas for another day.
It’s time to take your trimmed down bullet points and start developing the “script” out loud! We speak differently than we write, so practicing it out loud is crucial.
This will give you an opportunity to figure out the most conversational phrasing, but you don’t need to memorize it word for word. It’s totally fine if the “script” is a little different each time you practice it, as long as you’re hitting all the main points.
When you’re rehearsing, we recommend playing around with saying it in different ways so you’re not locked into one delivery. This will help avoid that “over-rehearsed” feeling.
You can also rehearse while doing a physical task like laundry or dishes since adding another layer to your rehearsal will help your brain memorize it faster.
Are you someone who is told that you are more flat or monotone on camera? Or that your natural personality isn’t shining through? That you’re introverted? A great rehearsal exercise you can do is our “Over The Top” exercise.
Here’s how it works: If you’ve been rehearsing your video at 100%, now try doing it at 300%! Rehearse it WAY bigger than you think it needs to be. Let yourself be ridiculous and push it past the level you’re comfortable doing it.
Even though you can’t see yourself, you should be thinking “there’s no way I’d ever perform it like this.”
The benefits of the “Over The Top” exercise is it’ll break you out of your shell so you can find different vocal and energy levels. We recommend filming this rehearsal (just for your own research, not to post!) and watching it back.
You’ll often find that you were not nearly as crazy looking as you thought. Your energy might be right where it needs to be and you have more pep and charisma than normal.
Some moments may very well be crazy, but now you know how far you can go and can adjust accordingly!
Pro Tip 1: When on camera, imagine you’re talking to your best friend, spouse, or even a customer you have a good relationship with. This will make you come across more natural and conversational. You want it to seem like you’re talking to each viewer personally, not a mass group of people.
Pro Tip 2: You’ll be suprised by going through the rehearsal process how quickly your brain memorizes things. However, you can also take the bullet points and tape them right next to your camera when filming. If you need a quick reminder of what comes next, just discreetly glance your eyes to see your next bullet point and continue on!
The three take rule
Now that you’ve rehearsed, are you ready to film it in three tries or less? If so, go for it! If not, keep rehearsing until you’re confident enough to knock it out in three takes max.
Too many takes drains your confidence and shoots your frustration level through the roof. That tension will come across on camera and affect your audience’s perception of you. Please don’t set yourself up for failure in this way and instead stick to our three take rule.
If you’re thinking you don’t have time to rehearse, keep in mind it’s actually taking you less time overall. Instead of wasting a ton of time (and emotions) doing 20 takes of a mediocre video, you’re just reallocating that time upfront for a controlled preparation process.
Do the work and trust us, you’ll have a way more enjoyable experience and your video will be substantially better!
If I want to start today and make one video, where do I begin?
Now that you know how to prep for a killer video, here are three quick and easy content ideas.
These can be pre-recorded or done via Facebook Live. It’s worth noting that Facebook Lives notify everyone when you go live and help beat the algorithm for you to get higher engagement. Just make sure you still do the prep steps listed above before you go live!
1. Tutorial video
Trainings and tutorials are an amazing way to position yourself as an authority in your field with value to give. It provides your audience actionable steps to take and also serves as a sample of what it’s like to work with you.
(Bonus – these perform REALLY well on YouTube, which is really a search engine at the end of the day.)
It’s better to have a series of shorter videos on focused topics rather than one long video that is all over the place. For example, do a tutorial on “The simplest way to replace a background on photoshop” rather than “How to use photoshop.”
Remember, you’re an expert in what you’re teaching, so let your passion for the topic shine through. These videos are way more compelling to watch through the end when your personality is showing!
2. Story with a moral or teaching
The best way to distinguish yourself and stand out from the crowd is by telling your story. You’re the only one who can do it. It’ll get your audience invested in your journey and have them feeling connected to you.
Something that often does well is to pick a challenge (even a small one) that affected your business or life and the story of how you overcame it. Or, tell your origin story of how you took control of your life and decided to become your own boss in the entrepreneur world.
Remember, emotions sell! Even if your circumstances aren’t the same as your audience, they’ll relate to the emotions underneath your challenges.
3. Behind the scenes video
Doing a “Behind the Scenes” video is a great way to show your humanity, authenticity, and introduce your audience to the unpolished version of you behind the brand. It makes them feel closer to you and adds relatability since you’re “just like them”.
An example of this is if you’re at an event, do a quick Facebook Live showing everyone what it’s like there so they can live vicariously through you. Or, if you have a morning routine that gets you hyped for the day, you can document that for your audience.
So what are you waiting for? Go make a video! Well, not yet. Finish this article first because we still have more tips for you. But THEN… then go make a video!
How to make your audience stop scrolling by your videos
The first moments of your video are crucial. Even if your content is fantastic, you still only have a split second to catch your audience’s attention to make them stop scrolling.
“Pattern Interrupts” are a trick to catch the eye of your viewers just enough to make them stop and watch.
Here are some pattern interrupts to get you started!
- Wave hands in front of the camera
- Use uncommon angles – ex: shoot from up high, shoot from down low, start super close up.
- Quick edits up front
- Use a text headline across the top of your video that hooks in your audience. Ex: “Why old marketing methods are DEAD!”
How to shoot your videos
Having that casual, unpolished feeling in a video makes it more relatable to people. We already mentioned how our eyes have gotten so good at scrolling past what looks like glossy ads or sponsored content, so the more your videos look like a regular social media post your friends put up, the better.
Smartphones are so amazing now that for most types of videos you’re creating, your phone camera is more than enough. The most important thing is don’t have a shaky camera!
We don’t want to feel like we’re watching “The Blair Witch Project.” If you’re filming in selfie mode and can’t hold your hands still, then get a gimbal or selfie stick. You can also go completely hands free and get a tripod.
Lighting – We need to be able to see your face! Make sure the lighting is in front of you and not behind since backlighting will make it almost impossible to see you. If you’re on a budget, use natural lighting or lamps.
Sound is the most important after a clear picture. People have very low tolerance for a video that sounds terrible. There are affordable shotgun & lav mics that connect to your phone, or you can even use headphones to start.
Backdrop – You don’t need to buy one, but be mindful of what’s behind you and ensure it’s not distracting. If you have a cluttered office, think about a better spot for you to shoot so it’s more aesthetically appealing for your audience.
Above all, confidence and content are more important than equipment. So don’t worry too much about what to buy and focus more on how to stand out! Equipment can always be added later.
You’re ready to hit record
Congrats! You have everything you need to make stellar videos that stand out from the crowd and attract your ideal clients. Once you start showing up as your most authentic self on camera, you’ll be amazed to see how effectively using video is going to skyrocket your business!
Now go brainstorm, trim the fat, rehearse and hit record!
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