by Monique Meseh
The whole “introverted writer” thing is so cliché. But hey, some clichés are true—and this is one of them. Many writers are introverts, preferring to keep to themselves, only entertaining the ideas and characters roaming in their brains. So the thought of broadcasting videos of yourself on social media may seem like a threat on your sanity—but it doesn’t need to be.
Truth is, video posts on social media can be unnerving for anyone, not just introverted writers, because it means showing up, showing out, and making yourself vulnerable in a way that stagnant posts don’t. It means no longer hiding behind a pretty, filtered picture, a funny meme, or inspirational quote. It’s raw and uncut. It’s full-on you!
And that’s what makes it so effective—your social media followers want more of you. While making video posts may seem terrifying at first, I promise, it gets easier with time and practice, and once you realize the positive reaction you get from your followers, you may even learn to love it.
Video posts are attention grabbers. When scrolling the timeline, Instagrammers and Facebookers are much more likely to stop and watch a video (at least partially) than they are to stop for a photo or text image. It’s a great way to get personal with your followers and make them feel more connected to you. They get to see your personality in action, which gives them more of an opportunity to like you. People buy people, and as a self-published author, the goal is to get people to like you and buy into you—and eventually buy your books.
Videos make it easier to close the gap between social media followers and loyal readers. The possibilities are endless when it comes to video creation. It doesn’t take a big production with a crew and expensive equipment. With just your smart phone and your personality, you can be on your way to becoming a social media phenomenon.
Clarity, proper lighting, and good sound quality are imperative when recording your videos. Nowadays, smart phones have pretty good image quality, so it’s perfectly okay to record right from your phone. To make things easier, and so your arm won’t fall off, you may choose to purchase a phone stand that will hold your device. Many of the phone stands come equipped with a ring light to provide perfect lighting. Some are relatively inexpensive and can sit right on top of your table or desk. If it’s in the budget, you may want to invest in a noise-cancelling mic that will block out any background noise. These, too, can sit right on top of your desk or table.
But even without a mic, stand, or ring light, you can make it happen. Just be sure to record in a quiet room with no distractions and set up good lighting. Natural light can work wonders, but make sure the light is in front of you, not behind. Be sure your background is clean and free of clutter.
Download a video editing app on your smart phone, which are often free. With a free video editor app, you can cut and splice your videos together, edit with text, filters, voice overs, and more to make your video more engaging.
Just as with any content on your social media page, it’s important to offer value with your video posts. By offering valuable content, you are establishing authority, building trust, encouraging engagement (likes, shares, and bookmarks), and eventually converting your followers into book buyers.
Value can come in different forms. My favorite value categories are entertainment, education, conversation, connection, promotion, and inspiration. Make sure your video content offers value in one or more of those categories as it relates to your target audience and your brand.
Try these ideas for video content that will encourage your followers to connect with you and engage:
- Tips and tricks
- Behind the scenes
- Live readings
- Book reviews
- Opinion pieces
- Character assessments
- A day in the life
- Current events
- Personal experiences
- Promotions and contests
- Regular scheduled installment
When recording and posting video content, it is more important than ever to be yourself. Relax, and let your personality shine. Whatever it is about your personality that stands out, make it larger than life, exaggerate it to make it more entertaining.
What makes you uniquely you? Do you have a distinctive look, an intriguing hobby, or an interesting quirk? Use it to help bring out your unique personality. You are the secret sauce, the X-factor that brings originality to your posts. No one can do you like you!
Don’t obsess over how you look. It doesn’t matter. If you’re delivering valuable content, your followers won’t care that your makeup isn’t done or your hair is out of place. Besides, letting people see you in your natural element makes them feel more comfortable with you. You come off as authentic and confident. Trying to be something you’re not is the best way to turn your viewers off. So get comfortable and show up as your authentic self.
Whatever you choose to do for your video posts on social media, keep it up! You must be consistent, even when you think no one is watching. Here’s the secret—someone is almost always watching.
Consistency, like authenticity, builds trust, and it builds a platform. Come up with a strategy and execute consistently, and watch your online community grow. So, break out of that shell and show your social media followers that you’re relatable, valuable, and unique.