Marketing can be all about trends. And for many of us, trends came be intimidating. They can make us uneasy or downright terrified. Understanding when trends are fads and when they represent a real change in the way things are done takes a good partner, a crystal ball or sometimes both. But the one thing I know for sure is as an entrepreneur you can’t let your discomfort stand in the way of trying new things.

One new thing that isn’t so new is video. There has been more and more discussion about videos and the role they should play in your online presence. Videos aren’t a trend, they aren’t a fad, they are a dynamic tool. And we all recognize that they are a powerful tool but often people get hung up on how to incorporate them into their marketing mix. We are faced with lots of questions that can leave our heads spinning.

Where should they go? Okay, so we all know YouTube but do we then just put them on our site. Post them on social media? Or both? Many entrepreneurs get caught in finding the perfect place for them. We have to get away from the finding perfection and focus on finding the best fit for our business.

What should the video talk about? This question can send a lot of entrepreneurs running. How do we decide what we are going to cover in the video? There are lots of ways to go with videos. Again you should experiment and see what works best for you and what you customers seem the most drawn to.

How long should they be? Then we go crazy reading articles, taking online courses, listening to podcasts, and watching other videos trying to decide the perfect length video. Again, try different lengths until you land on what works. Videos aren’t meant to last forever so if yours evolve over time that is okay.

What equipment do I need? Also, in the mix is what do I need to shoot my videos. Do I have to buy a bunch of stuff or can I just use my cell phone to shoot videos? Most of us aren’t experts on video production and this leaves us weary of all the details. But I say go with what you have for now and sort out what’s next later.

Once I shoot it then what? Everyone says the editing is the hardest. So most of us go down the path of “oh no once I shoot my video how will I know what to do next?” there are so many articles to read, podcasts listen to, and videos to watch your head will be spinning again. But this is where trial and error come in. Remember you most likely didn’t ride a bike on the first try.

And even if you can quickly find the answers to all these questions for yourself many of us are left still frozen by one simple fact. If we put ourselves out there on video, there is nowhere to hide. What will others think? And for those of us that are recovering perfectionists how will we deal with the video evidence of our less than perfect selves?

If you look around my site as of the date this blog is first being published, you will see there are no videos. And the reason is as a recovering perfectionist I can’t get out of my own way about it. I don’t mind being on camera, I don’t mind talking in front of people. But I have this deep need for everything to be just so. And I don’t have a “perfect” video set up for myself. So, I haven’t done one.

But it is time to stop trying to decode the perfect formula for videos. It is time to take a leap and put a few out there that will work for now. And then have a plan for what is next. So here is how I plan to get past the need for “perfect” and get videos on my site sooner rather than later.

  • Find a good enough solution for now. Use the cameras you have access to now and find a spot to shoot and go for it –
  • Be you – In the beginning you will feel more comfortable if you stick to being “real”. If you aren’t playing a part, you don’t have to remember who your character is.
  • Have a topic but not a script – most of us aren’t trained in delivering memorized speeches so don’t try. You will come off as more authentic if you just speak about a topic that you are comfortable with.
  • Shoot some videos – maybe start with vlogs and get them out there. These tend to be less polished so the fit our Just do it take. We must let go of the need for “perfect”. Yes, I’m talking to myself here.
  • Have a future plan – just because you start out basic doesn’t mean you can’t have a plan for leveling up. Ask yourself these questions and put a plan in place.
    •    Do you have a better location you can use?
    •    What equipment would make it easier and better?
    •    What kind if budget do you need?
    •    Should you get professional help?

Once you have tackled these steps you should have a plan on how to incorporate videos into your business in meaningful ways. And we must all remember that how you use them today won’t necessarily be how you use them tomorrow. But we can’t let the need for perfection or the uncertainty of the process stop us from using video or anything else for that matter.

By: Amy Matthews, CEO, AMI LC