04 Oct How To Deal With Camera-Shy Executives
Video tends to perform better on social media compared to other post formats. For marketers strategically positioning their company’s CEO or other leaders online, how do you deal with a camera-shy executive?
In this article, we share tips on how to bring up the topic of creating videos with your executive and how to get started with making them.
Why Video Content Matters on Social Media
Social media users expect to see a variety of different types of post formats, and this includes video. Compared to text-based posts, posts with a video are more engaging and can be a more interesting way to tell a specific story. In one study, 70% of consumers said that short-form videos are the most engaging type of social media content.
Videos featuring an executive can also help them come across as more authentic and relatable, both of which are important factors in creating a strong social media presence. It helps solidify the executive’s online personal branding.
When it comes to executive social media, many executives may create or share videos for different reasons. For the purposes of this article, we’ll focus on videos that feature the executive, rather than a general video created for the brand’s social media account. We also want to focus on videos that are about the executive themselves or their brand. For example:
- Thought leadership: Video clips where an executive shares their insights, experience, or predictions about major trends and opportunities within their industry
- Company milestones: Videos featuring the executive speaking about significant milestones, achievements, or awards
- Interview: Videos featuring the executive as they answer questions
How to Get the Conversation Started With Your Executive
Some executives love the idea of creating engaging video content for their personal LinkedIn feed. Other executives don’t want to touch the topic of “videos” with a 10-foot pole — at least, that’s how they may feel right now.
For many marketers who want to incorporate video content into their executive social media program, it’s important to have an honest discussion with the executive so that both of your goals and expectations are clear.
Here are some of our tips:
Provide examples of videos from other thought leaders in the same industry. Examples can help illustrate the types of videos you want your executive to create. These days, video-dominant social media platforms, like TikTok, tend to be what most people think about when marketers mention “engaging videos.” Your executive may have some preconceived ideas about video that marketers will want to talk through.
Communicate the benefits of creating videos and link actions to results. Videos often perform better than text-based posts. Look into stats, whether it’s industry-wide stats or even stats from the company side of your marketing program. For example, if you find that videos perform better than other posts on your company’s Instagram page, then share these stats with your executive.
Have a plan ready — but don’t overdo it! While social media marketers can get quite excited about positioning their executives online, don’t get ahead of yourselves just yet. Executives who are still on the edge about creating video content don’t need to see a 20-step video production program. Instead, start small and slow. It might be tempting to schedule a video on their LinkedIn feed every week, but that cadence may cause executives to be hesitant about shooting a video in the first place. Consider pitching one video a month or even every two months.
Tips on Dealing With an Executive Who is Camera-Shy
- Start with audio-only content: Videos tend to perform better when they feature your company’s executive, but here’s a good starting point: have them record their audio and get your designers to overlay that file on top of a separate video. The video itself could be stock footage, infographics, and so on. This is a great way to have your executive speaking about topics in your industry and sharing their insights but without having the camera focused on their face.
- Consider using a more approachable way to shoot videos: Some executives may not be 100% sure about what to say when a camera is pointed right at them. Instead, leverage a different format, such as having your CEO being interviewed by someone. They may feel more comfortable if they’re not the only one on camera and an interview-style format can help them collect their thoughts.
- Don’t focus on production value: Social media users want to hear directly from company executives. Being authentic is key! The video might not be professionally produced, but it can still be valuable (as long as the image quality isn’t too blurry or low-quality). We’ve seen videos shot on smartphone cameras that work just fine as executive social media content.
- Boost your executive’s confidence: It’s important to get your executive comfortable before even turning on the camera. This might even start at the scripting phase. Consider involving your executive in the writing. After all, you want the video to come across as authentic and your executive may have certain words or phrases they use often. Also, help your executive practice beforehand and provide constructive feedback, such as not speaking too fast or where they should look.
As the saying goes, practice makes perfect — but when it comes to social media, marketers and executives don’t have to be perfect. There’s a learning curve to creating video content, so the focus should be more on ensuring your executive is comfortable with being in front of the camera.
If you’re still stuck or want to learn more about alternatives to video creation, book a complimentary consultation with one of our executive social media experts!
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