Video is all around us — from social video platforms to a variety of streaming services, video content has taken the world by storm. Video has become so popular that 85% of internet users in the U.S. alone watch videos monthly, according to Oberlo. With such a massive demand for video content, it’s no wonder why both marketers and content creators worldwide have begun considering trying their hand at it. However, many people suffer from camera shyness, which makes them reluctant to give it a go…
Whether you’re an up-and-coming video marketer or a video content creator, the first few times in front of the camera are likely going to be a living hell. Whether you’re naturally introverted or just get anxious once that red light turns on, don’t worry — you’re not a lost cause. Just because you suffer from a bit of camera shyness doesn’t mean you should give up on telling your brand’s story through videos or pursuing a career as a YouTuber. We have prepared a few tips for you on how to get over camera shyness!
Here’s our advice on how to get over camera shyness:
Now let’s jump right in!
First things first, you should be aware that being camera shy is normal! Also, you’re not alone. Countless people have felt the same before you. Hell, even all the Hollywood stars you’re so used to seeing on the silver screen have had this problem at one point or another! The crucial take from all of this is that if all those people could overcome this anxiety, so can you!
But why are so many people camera shy in the first place? Firstly, many folks suffer from public speaking anxiety, which is part of the reason. The fear of speaking in front of an audience (despite it being virtual in our case) can be crippling, and more people have an issue with it than you might think. A study found that as many as 74% of people have difficulties speaking in public. And that translates to videos too.
The second part of the reason so many people are camera shy is stage fright. In other words, the fear of not living up to the audience’s expectations. Whenever we are under pressure to perform, we dread failure. That puts a lot of strain on us, which often just ends up being counterproductive. That’s why it’s essential to combat this irrational fear as soon as possible.
The first step toward solving any problem is identifying and coming to terms with it. That is why coming to terms with your camera shyness is essential on your journey toward getting over it.
You know what they say — practice makes perfect! As cheesy as that may sound, it is true. That’s why rehearsing before you begin filming will make it that much easier for you.
You should begin by memorizing what you’re going to say and then practicing it in front of a mirror. You should mainly focus on improving a few things:
Don’t overlook this crucial step, even when you get more comfortable with filming your videos. By practicing before recording, you can catch any flaws in your delivery and correct them before sitting in front of the camera to avoid embarrassing yourself.
This point is as essential as practice! Every successful video begins with a plan (unless you are an improv genius). That is why you should write a video script and rehearse it before sitting in front of the camera. By doing that, your delivery will be more cohesive and overall better organized.
Reading from a script on-camera, though, is not such a smart idea. You can do it; don’t get us wrong. It’s just that you’d come off more naturally if you weren’t reading from an off-screen script. Trust us — your viewers will know!
Just because you have a script ready doesn’t mean you have to learn it by heart! Quite the contrary — regardless of how long it is, you shouldn’t try to memorize it word for word. Instead, focus on learning the gist of it or remember just the essential bullet points.
Not having to worry whether you’ve said something different from what’s written in the script will be a huge stress relief. With that in mind, it will help you get over camera shyness! Also, not sticking to the letter of the script will make it easier to improvise if you stumble at any point. Oh, and it will also let your enthusiasm and emotions run more freely, which your audience will love!
Are you running a marathon? No. So slow down!
Whether you are making a video ad or a YouTube video, you must remember you’re not talking to your high-school buddy Jeff here. He might be used to your speaking speed, but not everyone is.
So don’t spew out words like a machine gun, but take it slow and steady. That will help calm your nerves and make your videos more comprehensible. On top of that, it will signal to your users that you’re confident in what you’re saying.
So don’t underestimate the power of taking it nice and steady!
Dry mouth frequently occurs when we speak. That is particularly true for when we’re under a lot of stress or are feeling anxious. So when you’re camera shy and are about to sit in front of a camera, always have a bottle of water at hand.
A quick sip when you feel your mouth going dry can do wonders for your nerves and instantly make you feel more comfortable.
Just like in public speaking, body language plays a vital role when making videos. Body language can help you overcome camera shyness the same way it can entirely transform your videos. But how? It’s quite simple.
Body language is not only an indicator of what a person is feeling on the inside, but it also works the other way. That’s right — actions like opening up your body language, using expansive hand gestures while presenting, and smiling can influence your inner state for the better. In other words, doing that can help you overcome camera shyness.
It’s truly a wonder what conditioning can do, isn’t it?
We understand that the majority of you likely feel most comfortable in your PJs, but that’s why we put in the disclaimer of “dress for the occasion.” With that in mind, it’s still essential to wear something you enjoy. When deciding on your video attire, ask yourself the following questions:
Making yourself comfortable will make getting over camera shyness a lot easier. So by dressing confidently and comfortably, you can indeed feel more up to the task!
Nobody enjoys artificial or soulless content. Not being yourself in your videos is a surefire way to destroy your prospects for a career in the video content industry. Luckily for you, being yourself is also one of the easiest ways to get over camera shyness!
OK, but why is being authentic so vital? It’s simple — nowadays, there is so much online content out there that generic and soulless content doesn’t appeal to anybody anymore. Also, consumers are more interested in hearing your story than about your products. That is why you should cater to those needs! And what better way is there to do that than by being yourself?
Trust us — you don’t! It will take time to get used to watching yourself on a screen, but don’t get stuck in the vicious circle of negative thoughts every time you record yourself — thoughts such as “Oh, my God. Look at my forehead; it’s huge.” or “Holy smokes, I sound like I’m recording in a bathroom.” are understandable, but they’re probably not true. The best way to help yourself let go of these ideas is to ask a friend or a family member to give you an opinion. Our perception of ourselves on video is often twisted and far from reality, so getting a second opinion is always better than trusting your gut.
Similarly, avoid falling into the trap of reshooting dozens of times! The sooner you make peace with the fact that not every video is going to be perfect, the sooner you’ll be able to relax and get comfortable on camera. Oh, and don’t spend too much time on video production also (don’t over-edit!).
Don’t forget to be persistent! Nobody has beaten camera shyness overnight, so expect it to take some time. But as long as you don’t give up, you’re bound to get comfortable in front of the camera sooner rather than later. So good luck on your journey!
Until next time!