Have you ever studied a TV news program? They really know how to present information persuasively so we can learn from what they do. Let’s watch one together now, shall we? OK, here’s the flashy opening sequence and we’re listening to the bombastic martial music, then the camera settles onto a PowerPoint graphic that summarizes what we’ll be covering in the next 24 minutes.

Oh, wait.

There is no PowerPoint graphic, is there? There is no table of contents. What is there, though? There’s a news anchor. There’s a person. Why? What’s the purpose of that person sitting at that desk? He or she does two important things.

They provide context for the stories. Without context, the news is not relatable. It’s just facts with no interpretation. The anchor provides interpretation, even if all they do is report the facts. The way they speak, their facial expressions and body language all communicate what they believe the truth of those facts to be. And the human form provides inherent interest. Without the anchor, you would tune out very quickly.

They provide connections between the stories. An abrupt transition between stories can confuse the viewer. Without a proper transition, a pause between stories to let the impact sink in, the news becomes all bombast and no substance. Yes, we live in an age of instant everything, but the human mind can only take in so much at a time. So the transitional moments are just as important as the news itself.
But what if the program was just the anchor talking all the time? That’s a problem too. Because the anchor’s job is to introduce ideas and then let the ideas have their impact. If the anchor interprets all the ideas before they are presented, the viewer is left poorer and the ideas die on the vine.

So why do I say you should be on camera about 30% of the time? Simply because if you have something to offer, it should be able to stand on its own as an idea. You go on camera to provide context and transitions between the various angles of your idea. If you have a 4 minute video that means you’ll be on camera for a little over a minute.

In addition to providing context and transitions, this will do a number of critically important things for you.

  1. It will show the investment you have in your ideas.
  2. It will provide a non-duplicable example of your value.
  3. It will be your guide to making a great video out of a good idea.
  4. It will leave your audience wanting more.

Moving from 30% to 100%
With more experience and training, you may learn to illustrate your points and still be on camera 100% of the time. This will drastically cut down the time it takes to make a video, but when you’re starting out, the 30% figure is more realistic, easier to manage, and better for your audience.

And since you don’t need to attract 10,000,000 viewers at a time, the best part is that you can do it without the martial music, unless you like that sort of thing. 🙂


Do you have “Sale Exhaustion”?
You’re got to love those post-Thanksgiving sales in our country that spread like a virus to the entire planet; Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, Lavender Sunday, Cyber Monday. I didn’t count, but I may have deleted 50 emails on this subject alone. I just wish I had seen one that related to me. I got mostly door-crashing deals on fabulous, one-of-a-kind-as-seen-on-TV Santa figurine/soap holder/mp3 players.

Well, I hope this pre-sale announcement will be about something more useful to your business than singing soap holders.

We’re going to get you using video in January. No kidding. We’re launching a new version of SellOnSite, our complete video salesletter course.

It’s designed to get you to working competence faster than ever before. Included in the new class will be more granular instruction; for example, daily rather than weekly assignments. There’s a new done-for-you component. We’re cutting back on the modules that didn’t relate directly to video. The whole course is more focused, more powerful and better for your bottom line than ever.

You’ll see all the details about it next week.

Video marketing is so exciting, so fresh and so potentially profitable for your business that you just can’t afford to be without it any longer. I want to get you to that point. SellOnSite is a blast of cool fresh air blowing into a hot, stuffy me-too marketing universe.

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