Top 10 tips for delivering an internal video communication
As people settle into working from home, virtual technologies, which only a few weeks ago seemed unfamiliar and somewhat daunting for many, have now become the new norm for communicating with colleagues. For employers and employees, this period of time will undoubtedly establish new working practices that will continue well beyond any enforced ‘lockdown’.
Good, strong internal communications have never been more critical than they are right now; senior leaders should be visible during times of uncertainty to provide reassurance and maintain a steady ship. Keeping isolated employees motivated, informed and healthy can be a challenge, so implementing new, creative methods to stay in touch and communicate key messages is core to employee engagement.
Delivering a video message ticks all the boxes in terms of visibility and ensures that the same information is received by everyone – a common issue when working remotely.
Here are our top 10 tips for creating and delivering a great video message for your employees.
- Plan ahead so you can tell a story
We all grow up listening to stories – our brains are wired to listen to the flow of a communication, but we need a beginning, middle and end to keep engaged. Prepare your listener “What I’m going to talk about today is…” so they know what’s coming and they’re ready. Talk and then wrap up with a summary or conclusion and call to action. Your viewer will remain engaged, receive the messages clearly and understand what they need to think, feel or do as a result of your communication.
- Take a look at yourself!
If we’re communicating internally, we can ‘appear’ more relaxed on-screen – less formal attire, for example. However, internal communications often receive the most scrutiny from employees, so this is the time to add the professional touch. Smart casual attire, with a more relaxed seating position is appropriate. Make sure your hair and clothes are neat and remember to smile!
- Take a look at your environment!
Make your background as neutral as possible. A plain background is best, so you are centre of the focus. If you are at home, then a home office environment or seated in front of a plain wall or closed curtains both work. Remove any items that disturb the frame of the picture (e.g. a pen pot or coffee mug) so we have a clean, smart environment to communicate from.
- Keep the camera steady
This should be easy if you are using a laptop to record your communication. However, if you are using a cell phone or tablet, ensure that it is mounted steadily. A moving screen is incredibly distracting and will spoil your talk.
- Ensure your audio is recording well
While the visual impact is important, the audio recording makes the difference. Make sure you speak at normal meeting pace and volume and that your video is recording well before completing the full piece. Use an external mic if needed.
- Don’t use digital zoom
Though it sounds like a good idea in theory, when you use digital zoom on your smart device, it can make for a very blurry video. Until technologies evolve, avoid the zoom and just move closer to the lens or object you’re trying to capture.
- Lighting is key
Make sure you have enough lighting in the room to make the picture bright, but not overly so. Avoid direct sunlight but do use natural day light, if at all possible. The lighting ‘tone’ affects the perception of the video – dark and dull suggests a dull subject, bright and cheery creates excitement. Artificial lighting can have a yellowing effect, so best to use natural daylight wherever possible.
- Use an editing app –
If your editing needs are not too complex—maybe you just want to compile a few clips together or add some titles—iMovie, Windows Movie Maker, or the YouTube video editor will do the trick (your kids can do it, so can you!)
- Aim to capture attention quickly & end on a positive note
A question, a quote or a ‘did you know’ are great ways to capture attention from the outset and start your communication off well. Even if your subject is difficult, always try to end on a positive and proactive note providing a ‘call to action’ for the viewer. For example, please find out more at xx, please take care etc.
10. Finally, keep it short!
The attention span of the viewer is VERY short where video is concerned. Please keep your video as short as possible OR if it needs to be longer, ask for help in including slides or graphics to break up the flow.