My worst fears were coming true. If I want to be relevant, engage, and develop relationships with the peeps who are my ideal clients, I can’t keep hiding. Guess what – that means video (shudder) of ME!
Can any of you identify? For as long as I can remember, I HATED having my picture taken! It showed in the photos, so it became a self-perpetuating thing. The photos are awkward, I look at them and see every flaw of complexion and character, and dread the next time the camera catches me. So, really, why wouldn’t video be the worst thing EVER?
It’s not just the fact that my image is out there. I struggled forever with shyness. I didn’t even want to call out for pizza because I was afraid that the person on the other end of the phone would judge me and find me unworthy. OK, so I realized that the world doesn’t revolve around me – that the person who answers the phone at the pizza joint could give a crap about me – but that only helped with the take-out calls. So, I forced myself to take two public speaking classes in college. What a nightmare! Though I did learn that it helps to prepare and practice.
So practice I did – socially, at least. I made myself talk to people at parties, at the grocery store and the gas station, at work. I learned how to ask questions and listen to the answers – then ask more questions based on those answers. I realized that most people aren’t laughing at me (ok, some are, but I don’t care anymore). Most people appreciate a kind word, a compliment, knowing that you care. People are just people, and a conversation is an opportunity to learn something or make a friend.
Starting a business took things to a whole new level – or so I thought. My business is me, and I don’t have the option to practice on people just when I want. If I expect people to believe in me, connect with me, there’s no hiding. I started with photos for my website. My husband, my dog, and I ran around town, and my husband took pictures. I had fun, and the photos worked! As long as my husband is behind the camera, I can actually have fun in a photo session – what a revelation!
Video was the next challenge – and you know what really helped? Zoom calls with potential clients, friends, family, people in my mastermind, and my coach all got me more comfortable with seeing myself on video. I also figured out some things about lighting and angles – and how to cut down the glare on my geek glasses. I felt like I was ready to try – gulp – going live!
The new year and the launch of my new website and blog gave me an opening – and I dove in. I did my first Facebook Live on New Year’s Day – and I didn’t even practice! I decided I just was going to have a conversation with whomever was watching, and you can’t really practice a conversation! And people liked it – wow.
So, what’s my point? First, if I can go live, anyone can – seriously! You can always delete it if is sucks – but chances are it won’t suck. Second, it’s no secret that video gets higher engagement. Algorithms are going to change, but for now you can count on video making a difference in your visibility. Third, your clients and your potential clients want to get to know YOU. You have a leg up in the know, like, trust challenge if you will put yourself out there. Who knows – it might even be fun!
I’d love to hear how you feel about visibility and video – whether you love it or struggle with it. If you want to practice going live, set up a private Facebook group and invite me – I’m happy to help!