I spent my childhood acting as a human shield for my mum every time a family photo was taken. I think this was payback for being the cause of the ‘baby weight’ that she gained from having each of us. We were then positioned strategically in front of her to cover up the lumps and bumps that she found so unsightly!
A couple of years ago I noticed that I was starting to use my children in the same way. “Just stand in front of Mummy, sweetheart”!
So you can imagine my horror as it became increasingly clear that video was becoming prevalent in marketing. Having just got over putting some photos of myself on my website (shot by a sympathetic photographer who knew how to make the lumps and bumps look the best they could) I was now going to have to (oh horror of horrors) reveal my true self on video.
If I am completely honest I procrastinated for two years about video. I made every excuse under the sun!
I knew that it would be a great way for me to connect with my audience and for my potential customers to get to know, like and trust me. And I knew that if they knew, liked and trusted me they would be much more likely to buy from me.
Yet, I still had that nagging little voice in my head ‘you can’t make videos – you’ll look awful, you’ll sound awful, who on earth would want to watch you anyway?’.
And I let that nagging little voice in my head take over until one day at the start of 2016 I realised that I wanted to grow my community and help women grow their own business WAY MORE than I DIDN’T WANT to make videos.
And so I just started. If I’m honest, the first few videos were pretty rubbish but as I became more experienced and my confidence grew I became much more comfortable sharing my message on camera.
A few weeks ago I did a live stream at a networking event. One of the participants remarked ‘wow you are so much more confident on camera than you used to be’.
Immediately my inner critic kicked in. Rather than accepting the compliment I immediately latched onto the idea that previously I really wasn’t very good at making videos! It’s crazy how we struggle to take our own advice. I constantly share the Ernest Hemmingway quote ‘The first draft of everything is sh#t’ with my clients.
We need to accept that the first time we do things they probably won’t be very good. But unless we make that start we are never going to get any better.
I do still find it a bit odd talking to a camera but I’ve really started to enjoy it, and with live video on platforms such as Facebook Live and Periscope I am genuinely enjoying having the opportunity to have real-time conversations with my audience.
So I challenge you, if you haven’t already, make a video about your business. Keep it simple, 1-2 minutes max explaining who you are and the benefits of your product or service.
Nicola Semple is a small business mentor and mindfulness practitioner. Nicola passionately believes that even the smallest business can harness the power of online marketing to help them punch above their weight and be a little business with a big voice. You can find her on Facebook here.Nicola Semple, NicolaSemple.com