Video and Content Updated October 2nd, 2017.
Even the best of us trip over our words when recording a video because there’s no feedback to keep us on track: no facial expressions, no body language, no questions, and no comments.
We waste time doing multiple takes only to become more frustrated.
Teleprompters were invented to ease this situation. However, it takes a high degree of skill to read from a teleprompter without sounding like a robot. Teleprompters slow down the production process as well.
Fortunately, there’s an easy fix, an outlining technique called Scriptless Scripting™. The technique plays to your strength of talking off-the-cuff, giving you scaffolding to wrap your words around.
The first step is to forget about everything you want to say because the recipient is doesn't care. They're listening to WIIFM (What’s In It For Them). Tune out your radio station and tune into theirs.
Visualize the recipient. Ask yourself the following questions: What's their day like? What’s their job like? What’s their life like? How are they feeling right now? What are they concerned about? What are they excited about?
Once you're walking in their shoes, proceed to Step 2.
An effective video has four parts (these four parts are outlined below).
Intro (formerly "Snap")
Why should they watch your video?
What are the talking points?
Jot down one or two words only per talking points and use them like scaffolding to wrap your words around.
What’s the overarching takeaway?
What’s the next step?
By the way your scriptless scripting system helped me so much! That's how I found your website, I was struggling recording a video and memorizing a script but banged it in 5 minutes using your formula.
The best order to complete the outline is as follows:
Resist the urge to take detailed notes. The less you write, the better your video will be. You only need a few talking points because the reality is, you know what to say. You talk every day, on the telephone and in meetings. Talking is natural when it's part of a conversation. Use the talking points like scaffolding to wrap your words around.
Here’s a helpful opening line to get you going:
I've just started using video, so go easy me and let me know if you find it helpful. Also, I respect and value your time. So if you see me looking down, I'm referring to my notes because I want to stay on track.
And last but not least, phone's ring, car horns beep, dogs bark, and co-workers are noisy. Distractions are unavoidable and as they say, “The show must go on!”
Resist the urge to go back and do another take; unless it’s absolutely necessary. Instead, roll with it like you would in a live situation—distractions are opportunities to demonstrate your ability to regain your composure. Recording a video in one take is faster and comes through more naturally.
It’s important to decompress before you make a video.
Turn side-to-side in your chair. I like to say “If it swivels wiggle!” Then close your eyes, take several deep belly breaths. Squeeze your shoulder up and release. Get the tension out.
Energy levels up. Big smile. Now record.
Or, if you prefer acronyms, take a VOW before you make a video:
VISUALIZE the recipient and tune into their radio station, OUTLINE the video by jotting down the talking points, then WIGGLE to get the tension out and your energy levels up, before recording.
"One video. One take." Pretend the show is live.