10/06/2014 12:53 EDT | Updated 12/06/2014 05:59 EST

Four Ways to Look (and Sound) Good on Camera

Chris Whitehead via Getty Images

You've finally decided to hire a production company, or to film your own video blogs to market your business.

The idea of putting yourself "out there" might be terrifying, but it doesn't have to be. Working with the right crew or doing some trial runs on your own can make all the difference.

Here are four tips to ensure you look your best when in the spotlight.

1. Delivery.

When speaking on camera, your job is to keep the viewer engaged. If you're working with a production company, much of the storyline's pacing depends on editing. But if you're doing straight-to-camera video blogs on your own, timing is entirely up to you.

Keep your verbal delivery consistent -- not too fast, not too slow -- and avoid long pauses, keeping in mind that too many "um's and ah's" can affect your credibility. Also, to let your personality shine, refrain from a monotone speech pattern. You want to come across as appealing, welcoming and trustworthy to your viewers, and much of that is expressed via your tone.

2. Body language.

As you well know, body language and facial expression play an incredibly important part in how others perceive you. Your goal should be to appear as natural as possible; relaxed yet professional. If you have a tendency to fidget, keep it under control once the record button has been hit. If you're being interviewed, maintain eye contact with the interviewer. If you're going for straight-to-camera delivery, eye contact with the camera means eye contact with the viewer -- so don't let your eyes jump all over the place. In a sit-down interview, stay away from chairs that swivel or rock.

Remember: Shoulders back, chin up and, of course, remember to speak with a smile! Doing these three things will differently affect the energy of your delivery, enhance your posture and overall flow.

3. Wardrobe.

Looking your best is often the key to feeling more confident in front of the camera. And when you're confident, your delivery and final video product will be optimal.

Choosing appropriate clothing sets the visual stage for your production. Business casual works best in most cases, but it depends on what type of industry you're in. Wear something you'd wear when working with a client or customer. A realtor would dress differently than a personal trainer, for example.

Before your shoot, experiment with a variety of outfits and colours to determine what makes you feel your best. It's best to avoid shiny, reflective materials, bright colors, bold patterns and thin stripes. Also take into consideration the background to ensure there's enough contrast with your wardrobe. Of course, make sure your clothes are clean, lint- and wrinkle-free.

4. Hair, makeup and accessories.

When styling your hair before your video shoot, style as you normally would in a professional setting. Ensure your hair isn't covering or likely to fall over your face during the shoot by using a bit of extra hair product, as necessary.

If you wear makeup, it should be applied slightly thicker than everyday wear. But be careful: but too much will make you look over done, which you want to avoid. Stick with a natural, yet defined look. Powder is a must, and keeping it or blot papers handy during your shoot will be a blessing if working under professional lighting.

Jewelry should be kept minimal and professional -- again, whatever you might normally wear when working or meeting with a client or customer. If you wear glasses, it's best if they are coated to reduce the reflections of video lights. And don't forget to to a final mirror or camera test immediately before recording.

If you're ever in doubt about any of these steps, just ask. If you're doing the shooting yourself, ask a few of your closest colleagues, friends or family members if what you have planned best expresses who you are and what your business wants to express visually.

Most of all, have fun! Video offers tremendous potential for all businesses, and when you're having a good time, it shows.


Photo galleryActors Who Have Gone Behind The Camera See Gallery