Webshotz Part 1
A Webshotz is a 60-90 second piece to camera delivered by one person in front of a green screen in our TV studio here at Media House in High Wycombe.
The video, produced for web use, is an opportunity for you to introduce yourself, your products or your services personally to potential customers. Here are a few tips to help you prepare for appearing on camera.
When considering your approach for the webshotz it’s a good idea to give thought as to your prospective client persona. In other words, what is their pain point? What benefit or solution do you offer that will make them break open their virtual chequebook?
Presumably, they will be online when they look for your service, however, what specific platforms do you feel they are likely to use? For instance, are they Facebook users or LinkedIn users or just likely to be on a Google search? Or maybe all three, but one is likely to be the most obvious and with that in mind you can hone your piece to be as informal or formal as appropriate.
Facebook would be informal; LinkedIn still informal but more business focussed, and with a Google search you’re usually looking at a stronger business profile for professional services.
However, what matters is what is comfortable for you too, so plan to speak as you would naturally to someone who was in front of you, face to face.
So if you are going to do a Piece to Camera, what will happen during filming?
You will be asked to look down the camera lens; this gives your audience the impression that you are talking to them one to one and encourages personal engagement. The autocue machine is also attached in front of the camera lens so that you can read your words directly and keep a strong eyeline with the viewer. Avoid looking off camera to other members of the crew and concentrate on an imaginary person behind the lens; someone you know and would be comfortable having a conversation with. Don’t be afraid to take a pause for breath or leave some time spaces for the viewer to take on board your message. People often feel a need to fill every moment with words and noise, it’s not necessary and can make the viewer feel stressed so leave breathing spaces. Avoid starting paragraphs with “as I said earlier” or “so” as these comments can make continuity difficult. If, for any reason, you are not happy with your delivery, ask to record again – it’s quite normal to do several takes. However, do be aware that you need to complete the piece to camera in one continuous shot. We will usually do your piece 2 or 3 times using different focal lengths to allow for creativity in post-production.
One of the strange things about filming is that as soon as the director calls ‘Action’ everyone in the room, other than the presenter, goes quiet; this can feel peculiar as all of a sudden 2 or 3 people are there but almost completely ignoring you because they are concentrating on the equipment and watching the filmed output to make sure you are coming across well.
It’s a good idea to practise speaking whilst looking at yourself in a mirror; practice smiling at yourself so that your facial muscles get used to how that feels – then you’ll more easily be able to smile down the camera lens and know that it looks right.
Finally, keep looking down the camera lens until the director calls ‘Cut’ – the editor often needs a little extra footage at the beginning and end of a piece to allow for a transition to a graphic or the next shot and if you look away too soon it can spoil that effect and make you look uncomfortable.
Thank you for reading this blog, we will be uploading part 2 next week. If you have any questions please feel free to get in touch. Call +44 1494 898 919