How can I deliver knockout presentations to camera? | Q and A Video Marketing

How can I deliver knockout presentations to camera? | Q and A Video Marketing

Session #5 7th April 2014.


Hello and welcome! My name is Marcus Seeger and I am the owner and video profit strategist here at Video Experts. Welcome to our live Q&A, this is held every Monday at 12.00 noon AEST on Google Hangouts On Air and you are most welcome to join me and ask any questions that you might have about video marketing. So welcome this is actually session 5 on April 7 2014.

So we have one main question for today that we’re going to be focusing on because it’s quite a large topic. Now this question is:

“How can I deliver knockout video presentations to camera?”

Okay so this a really interesting question that I actually get asked quite a lot, so “Marcus what are your tips for me getting on camera, I’m just not very good at it”, or “I’ve never done it before”, or “you seem to be able to get the hang of it, how do you do it?” all these kind of questions and, you know, it’s like often the most confident extrovert person that will freeze up in front of the camera, so it’s quite a normal experience for people to feel a little bit out of sorts when they’re talking to a camera, you know, it’s very different from when we’re talking to a human being.

So let’s get stuck into some tips, I’ve got five fantastic tips here for you that I’m going to share which is going to really help you to be able to get in front of that camera with confidence and deliver knockout presentations. Okay so let’s get stuck into it.

  1. My top tip number one, even if you only watch the video up to this stage, number one, this is an awesome tip. So the tip is ignore the camera, not like looking away from it and pretending it’s not there, but looking at it and pretending it’s actually your best friend standing right there in front of you and you’re actually talking to them directly, your best friend. So obviously the camera is there but we can trick our mind into pretending our best friend is in front of us and we can talk to that person instead of the static inanimate object which is the black box camera sitting on the tripod. So this is a fantastic tool, I’ve used it a lot and I’ve heard of a lot of other people using it as well, it is really my number one tip for delivering great presentations to camera. Alright so short and easy and it works, so that’s tip number one.
  2.  Tip number two. Okay we’re going to get into a little bit more detail here. Tip number two is it’s okay to make mistakes. So the thing there is that whenever we get up and do a presentation to camera, we often make mistakes, we sometimes forget what we’re going to say, we stumble over words, we don’t deliver with the same energy that we’re planning to, whatever it is we make mistakes, its human nature.

When we’re actually filming clients presenting to camera, it’ll actually be the third or fourth take quite typically that is the one that we use, the first two or three are actually just warm-ups, we film them anyway to make them real but the best take usually comes after a few practice runs, so it’s quite normal. Don’t get hung up, don’t beat yourself up about not being able to present on demand without any errors because there are very, very few people that can do that.

Now just leading onto that in terms of making mistakes, one way to build up some confidence in yourself to help minimise those mistakes is to practice. Quite often we actually know what we’ll be asked to talk about, whether we’ve seen some questions already or we’ve got a script prepared, we actually know what we’re going to be talking about, so practice okay, it’s a great opportunity to warm up and feel more confident about what you’re going to be presenting to camera about, so you’re less inclined to think about the words and rather just deliver them, and that all helps for you to be able to present well.

There’s two ways that you can practice, one is just in front of a mirror so you can actually just look at yourself, see what your hands are doing, what your face is doing, how you’re standing, you’re still listening to your own voice through your own ears which is different to how someone else will hear you, but nevertheless a mirror is a fantastic way to practice and get that instant feedback.

And the other way is to actually record yourself, typically a smartphone will do this for you quite well and enables you to just review without being tied up in the moment – as you would be in a mirror – and review your delivery and find out little ways that you can actually improve, maybe it’s facial expressions or hand gestures for example. Now keep in mind when you do this with the video camera, your smartphone or when indeed you see yourself on screen after presenting to camera, you initially when you first see yourself think “wow, that doesn’t look like me, I don’t think of myself as looking that way”, and the reason for that is that we typically are used to seeing ourselves in a mirror and of course a mirror actually flips everything around, it’s a mirror so everything that we see on the right is actually on the left and vice versa so our brain is confused when we actually see ourselves on the screen for the first time because it’s the reversal of how we’re normally seeing ourselves in the mirror.

So don’t worry about that, again it’s completely normal, just move on, just realise that your brain’s just playing tricks and don’t worry about it.  In fact when you actually see yourself more often on screen you will just get used to it anyway.  Alright so there’s tip number two, it was quite a big one, it’s okay to make mistakes and practice is a great tool to minimise those mistakes, but that’s not going to happen anyway so don’t worry.

  1. Alright, tip number three. Now online and in video it’s very easy to spot a fake, isn’t it? You know, you see somebody who is trying to be something that they’re not or pretending to be this or that, transparency it’s very easy to see through that person. So the tip here is just to be yourself, okay. Don’t pretend to be something that you’re not. In fact it takes a lot more energy to pretend that you’re somebody that you’re not, so just be yourself, okay. And that will work really effectively for you, you’ll feel more comfortable in who you are and to deliver to camera, and you’re not thinking about “oh I must be more serious or I must be more humorous or I must be whatever it is”, no, you just have to be yourself, and that’s the easiest thing for you to be, it’s what we are every day. So just because there’s a camera in front of us doesn’t mean we need to suddenly switch into a different personality, we can just be ourselves and that is a really good tip for just keeping everything as natural as possible, and you will find that your presentations are more effective because of that.
  2. Alright, so tip number four, here we go we’re really flying through them now. Have you ever noticed that when you sometimes see a presenter that they seem flat or two dimensional, and you wonder why, particularly if you know that person and you’ve seen them before and you go “they’re not really like that, what’s going on?” And look it could be that they’re nervous but more often than not it’s the fact that the camera will actually psych the personality out of a presenter, and that might seem a bit weird, but basically you’ve got a live human person and the camera is using, like it’s a digital replication of that person and when the camera does that there’s a certain amount of that humanity that is, what I call, sucked out of them, so the lens just kind of narrows that down.

So by being aware of that, we’re able to be conscious and just to lift our energy levels just that little bit more than we usually do in an everyday situation and that allows the camera then to actually reflect more accurately how we are, because if we’re at this level normally, we amp it up a bit for the camera, and the camera will just bring it back to that normal level that we’re at when we’re just chatting to people normally. So it’s something you need to be aware of, certainly don’t go over the top as there’s no need to do that. One way you can find where that sweet spot is for you where you are just delivering a little bit more amped up and the cameras just seeing you as normal, to find that level, again practice, and the recording on the smartphone for example to actually watch yourself back is the best way to find that sweet spot level.

  1. Alright so moving right along, we have tip number five. Now before I get into tip number five I’m just going to let you know a little bit of back story with me and it’s a bit of a confession really. So after like nine years of coaching and filming my clients in front of camera to get the best out of them so they can deliver their message clearly to their customers, I have recently, just in the last three months decided it’s about time that I turn the camera around and I’m in front of it. So I have been using the coaching skills that I’ve been teaching other people with myself, and it’s been a huge learning experience.  And that first video that I did, it was just, I found it really difficult, but I knew I had to do this, I knew I had to get in front of the camera to help myself and to help my business, and that’s what I’ve been doing almost every week or sometimes even twice a week. So the practice is definitely helping.

So what I’m getting at here is that everyone’s going to be a bit scared about getting in front of the camera, or virtually everybody, so don’t worry, just accept that and do it anyway. Okay, so we need to take that first step, we need to take a massive action to get over that uncomfortable feeling of being in front of the camera, and once we’ve done it, hey you know, the second time it’s not so bad.  The third, fourth, fifth, you know what I mean, it just gets easier and easier every time you actually get in front of the camera, you’ll have more confidence and you’ll be able to deliver, it’s just that first few that you’ll be particularly a bit unsettled, but if you use these tips that we’ve gone through today it’s really going to help you.

So moving right along, that was just a train that went by if you heard that in the background. That’s my top five tips but hey, you know, I always like to deliver a bit extra and I’ve got two fantastic bonus tips for you here today that is really going to help.

  1. Now the first bonus tip is just smile, that sounds basic but hey, you know what? People like to do business with other people, right? They don’t do business with businesses. So video, one of the reasons why it works so incredibly well is that you’re able to engage your audience and they can see you as a person, they get to know, like and trust you, okay. So by smiling, you’re going to be a lot more engaging and interactive with the audience okay, you don’t have to talk like this with a constant smile on your face, no I’m not talking about that, I’m just talking about bringing a bit of sparkle, a bit of energy, a bit of smile to your presentation, particularly the beginning and the end of when you’re talking. If you’re seeing a presentation and they’re just delivering like this, then you’re going to not really connect with them in any way. Alright so it’s quite an obvious thing there, just add a bit of smile, don’t get too uptight about being in front of the camera, just relax a bit more and let’s see some teeth okay. So that’s bonus tip number one.
  2. Bonus tip number two is in fact to warm up before actually going on camera and you can do this through some tongue twisters, okay, the tongue can get a little bit flustered sometimes when it’s speaking words, so some basic tongue twisters can really help and I’ve got three examples here for you.

The first one is “tip of the tongue, tip of the teeth, tip of the tongue, tip of the teeth”, it just gets the tongue working around the mouth.

Second one, “red leather, yellow leather, red leather, yellow leather”, I love that one, okay just give it a try.

And the last one is the classic “Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppercorns”, try that. Obviously the faster you go the harder you’re working and the more warmed up you will be when you actually get in front of that camera. Alright, and it just kind of puts me, when I do them, it puts me in that zone where I’m like “okay, I’m going to be presenting on camera in a few minutes, this is my warm up routine”, so it just becomes part of that.

So hey guys, thank you very much for sticking with me with that, I’m going to just quickly, briefly give us an overview of what we’ve covered today. So the first thing is how do you deliver a knockout presentation on camera and the fact is that most of us are a little bit concerned about doing this and often need a bit of help, so five basic tips.

Number one is just imagine that you’re talking to your best friend, get the camera out of the equation and just talk naturally, candidly, comfortably to your best friend.

Number two, it’s okay to make mistakes, we all do it, in fact we often warm up and the third and fourth take is the one that actually works, sometimes more by the way, and you can actually practise before you get on camera either in front of a mirror or by recording on a smartphone and reviewing your presentation.

Tip number three, just be authentic, be yourself, don’t pretend to be somebody else. People will be able to see through it, it will take more energy and you won’t be able to deliver as effectively as if you’re just being yourself.

Number four, the camera will suck some of your personality out of it despite the very nature of the technology, so just amp it up a little bit, give it a little bit more pizazz than you normally would and then the camera will just reflect that as you normally are, no need to go too over the top.

Number five, you know, take massive action if this is the first time you’re considering making video or being in front of the camera, just do it, you know. It’s like the first one, that first step, we’ve got to crawl before we can walk, walk before we can run, just give it a go, just try it, overcome those initial barriers and you will find it so much easier going forward with your third, fourth, fifth, 10th, 100th video down the track.

Two bonus tips, smile, it just means that people do business with people, it helps you to be more engaging and more human. And number two, just do some tongue twisters to warm up your voice and your face and your tongue before actually presenting, it’ll just give you that extra edge.

So there we go guys, I really hope that has helped you, it certainly has helped me turn that camera around and after nine years of being on the other side to now being more comfortable in front of the camera, and the more I do it the more enjoy it, so I hope that works for you too.

So that brings us to the end of Q&A Monday. I do encourage you to tune in every Monday at 12.00 noon AEST, we have great questions here that I really enjoy answering for you, and if you found this to be useful and informative information, I’d like you to do two things for me if that’s possible. The first one is actually to find somebody that you can share this with, so maybe there’s someone who’s got a presentation coming up on camera for the first time, just send them the link with the video and they will really appreciate that and I will appreciate you as well for sharing that information.

The second one is just to pop in your details on the free updates tab on, just so we can keep in touch, I would love to be able to just provide you with some extra information about what we’re doing here and to help you understand how your business can benefit from video marketing.

So that’s it guys we’re wrapping it up, thank you once again for joining me, I really do appreciate it, we’ve got another Q&A of course next Monday at 12.00 noon AEST and then we’ve got a break for the Easter Monday the following week. So I look forward to you joining me and enjoy the rest of the week and have a fantastic day.

Thanks very much, bye for now!

[End of transcript]

So there you have it – five plus two bonus tips on how to deliver knockout presentations to camera regardless if you are doing your first one or have done many. Marcus has invested in public speaking coaching from Phil Schebeci Seminars.

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