Did you know that the average person spend 3.7 hours a day on their mobile device, mainly watching video content? That YouTube is the 2nd largest search engine in the world? And with people increasingly using mobile to watch video, those statistics are just going to keep climbing. Video is one of the best ways to get your fans to feel like they know you without actually meeting you in person.
A couple weeks ago we held a scholarship contest that asked participants to submit a video to be considered. It reminded me how simple and powerful just talking to the camera can be – but it also made me think of a few mistakes and things to improve on when shooting your own film!
1. Practice, practice, practice!
Talking on camera is just like anything else – it takes a while to get comfortable and good at it! You get better as you do it more! The trick is to let your personality shine through and not be too scripted, formal or try too hard. If your best friend would say “Why are you talking like that?” when they watch your video, you’ve got some practicing to do.
2. Wing it! (Sort of…)
Yes, you need to know what you’re going to say (and I suggest thinking about your talking points beforehand) – but some of the best moments are the ones that are unplanned. You want to be real, approachable and charming. It can be hard to do that off a teleprompter. So before you start filming get clear about the purpose of your video and what you want to say, but allow yourself to go off script too. There are no awards for getting it perfectly on the first try – and often enough, you’ll have to record several times (or 100 times!) to get it right!
3. Learn Basic Editing
Your best bet for this is going to be iMovie if you’re just doing a simple video for your fans. You turn on the built-in camera and go. Watch some tutorials online (this is a good place to start) or do some experimenting yourself with titles and transitions. Don’t overblow us with your audio (or be too quiet!). Audio is so important to get right and totally adjustable via iMovie. You can turn the mic on your computer up or down and you can also raise or lower the audio of your clip once it’s in your project by going to “Audio Adjustments.” Little things like “ducking the audio” of the other tracks (if you have one of your music tracks playing behind you) makes your video sound more professional. Keep it clean and simple and then make it easy for yourself by attaching your Youtube account to your iMovie and uploading from the “Share” navigation menu. Don’t forget to use the appropriate tags so people searching for music similar to yours can find you!
4. Be a Role Model.
I don’t mean you have to be a goody-two-shoes here – not at all! But if you’re talking about struggles or setbacks, you should be talking about things you’ve already overcome. If you end up complaining or being negative people will turn away from you. They may try to comfort you at first to make you feel better, but in the end, it will only make them think of you in terms of that failure. People want to be around the energy of success or listen to stories of overcoming something difficult. If you are telling a story about something terrible that happened be sure to tell us how you worked your way around it. Maybe you ended up having a kickass show in spite of the setback! Just be sure to share it – it’ll make you seem like the music superhero you already are.
5. Dig Deep and SHARE
Don’t be afraid to share deeper parts of yourself. People look up to artists because they are brave and able to turn their feelings and setbacks into art. Stand up for what you believe in and show the world where your heart really is!
There are about a million reasons you might be doing this. Whether you’re setting up a crowdfunding campaign, doing a monthly update video for your fans, answering fan questions, entering a contest, or doing a special video for a fan’s birthday (or other occasion), etc., etc. – you want to use video to your advantage. Get creative and find something that matches your own brand and see what you can do!
And don’t forget, only 1 week left to join my 6 Month Online Signature Songwriting Circle and get private A & R Direction + Access to our hit-making CCVM Songwriting Team. This program has helped hundreds of artists refind their message, sounds, and direction. I want you to be next.