How to Speak Confidently on Camera & Look Like a Natural
Online video content is more important than ever. Between the numerous platforms available such as Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, YouTube, and more, video content is growing in popularity. And it’s showing no sign of slowing down. This is partly because people crave authenticity. Today most businesses, entrepreneurs, and politicians, need video marketing to reach and connect with audiences.
While this may be great news for many, not all of us can speak confidently and naturally on camera. Being on camera can be a daunting and often overwhelming task. At Helium, we understand this well. That’s why we’ve put together a video mini-series featuring Ann Lang that can help anyone start feeling natural and confident on camera. You’ll also find that link below this article.
Video can help you connect with your target audience more effectively to increase conversion rates and sales. Video is a great way for organizations to stand out because it’s authentic and humanizes the brand, which strengthens consumer trust.
Let’s take a look at some tips that can help you start feeling more confident and natural on camera.
1. Practice, Practice, Practice
You’ve probably heard the old adage, “practice makes perfect”. This statement couldn’t ring truer. You’ll quickly learn that being on camera isn’t that different from speaking to a friend. However, it takes practice to become confident speaking in front of a camera. The best way to practice is to simply begin.
Try recording and watching yourself speaking on video. Pay attention to how watching yourself on camera makes you feel, but don’t be too hard on yourself. Notice the things you do often and decide whether to change or keep them. For example, if you use a lot of verbal fillers such as “um” or “ah”, work to slowly reduce or stop using them entirely.
Remember that you can keep recording yourself until you begin to naturally speak with more confidence. Consider chunking some time every day, week, or month to practice speaking on camera.
2. Conversate With Yourself
This may sound silly to some but talking to yourself is a good way to learn confident speaking skills. Try picking a topic and speaking to yourself about it while in the shower, walking, or in front of a mirror.
The goal of this exercise is to become used to hearing yourself speak aloud, and adjust your mannerisms to appear more natural. Your topic of choice doesn’t even have to be clever or smart, it can be utter nonsense. Speak aloud to yourself for several minutes a day and develop a routine of language checks.
This can also be done before a video shoot. After this, you may find that you feel more natural and confident once the camera rolls.
3. The Script is Only a Guide
A video script is useful for organizing your thoughts ,but treat it as a guide, not the “be all and end all”. Know that it’s okay to cover the topic naturally, not word for word as per your script. However, you must know your topic well for this to work.
Also, a good understanding of what you’re talking about will make you feel and sound more confident. Just let your words flow naturally and have fun.
4. Mistakes Are Fine
You don’t have to be perfect and frankly, most audiences don’t expect you to be. Even the greatest actors make mistakes regularly. So maybe you won’t get it right all of the time and that’s fine. Also, mistakes often make your video more authentic and human, which can improve the perception of your audience.
5. Dress Comfortably, but Professionally
Here’s the thing; the outfit you choose to wear will most likely impact your comfort level while on camera. So pick an outfit that you feel good and comfortable in. Whatever it is, just make sure it’s professional and you feel great. This way, you’ll naturally sound like a million bucks.
6. Pick the Right Environment or Adjust it a Little
Your environment matters because it can impact the way you feel. You should shoot your video in a comfortable and familiar environment. Pick a place where you spend plenty of time in, have been to before or will like. Also, you can make adjustments to the video shooting spot if it happens to be your only option.
7. Insecure? Then Know Where They’re Coming From
The worry of feeling that we’re not enough – not as intelligent, popular, informed, and so on, can prevent us from being on camera. Insecurities make it near impossible to voice our opinions, thoughts, beliefs, and in general, be our true selves.
However, if you know where your insecurities stem from, you can begin to tackle them. Think about the things you’re insecure about and write them down on a piece of paper or something equivalent. Then take an honest and realistic look at each one.
You’ll likely find that most of your insecurities are needless worries. There isn’t a person on the planet that doesn’t have insecurities. Some are simply better at hiding or dealing with them than others.
8. Remember It’s About the Audience
The audience cares more about the value than you. They want to hear what you have to offer or say and their number one concern is usually what’s in it for them. So if you focus on the value, everyone else will do the same.
Create videos from a place of service. That means adopting the mindset of helping others instead of worrying about their judgment. What we’ve found is that when our clients adopt this mindset, they become more confident and appear natural on camera.
9. Be Proud of Who You Are
No one is perfect, regardless of what they may want you to believe. While it may take time, start learning to love your imperfections and perfections equally. We all have both and they’re part of being human. So don’t expect everything to be perfect because, in truth, it shouldn’t be.
Your imperfections make you authentic. They’re what draws people to you and while it takes personal work, you can learn to love yourself.
Confidence Starts from Within
Whether building a successful business, getting into politics, or entrepreneurship, you need confidence and what better way to build it than by video. Take charge of building up yourself through personal development. A great start is our 4-part mini video series on how to feel more confident and natural on camera.
Free 3-Part Video Series: Learn How to Be Natural on Camera
Ann is a freelance radio, TV, and podcast producer. Her work has been featured on CBC, The Globe and Mail, OWN Canada, Investigation Discovery, and The Cable Public Affairs Channel.