Make your online video more compelling with Winning Body Language


As we continue to move into a world where the capability to shoot video is placed into the hands of us “common folk”, understanding how to present to an audience has become more important than ever.  As you’ve likely heard and forgot a hundred times before, your body language alone accounts for 55 percent of how your audience understands your message.  The next 38 percent is accounted for by the tone of your voice, and a measly 7 percent can be attributed to the words you choose. In other words, communication is not about what’s been said, it’s about what’s been received. Here are the top 3 things you can learn about creating compelling online video from Mark Bowden’s Winning Body Language (PS - the video above is a preview of what’s in the book).

1. Breathe, dammit!.

Your breath is one of the most important things to take care of if you are going to create a compelling presence. Being on the “in-breath” is key. Here’s how to do it. Stand up and begin expanding yourself upwards, gently straightening out your spine. Act like somebody is pulling a string attached to the top of your head. At the same time, don’t let you heels come off the ground. Just notice how you feel when you do this. You’ll probably feel like your lungs are more full of air than they usually are, and also tend to feel lighter and more energetic than a couple of seconds ago. Now for the interesting part - start talking to somebody who is sitting next to you in this stage. After about 30 seconds, switch back to your normal state where you are a little more hunched over and breathing less deeply. If you are like most people you’ll actually find that it’s harder to think and form sentences in your original state than it was on the in-breath.

2. How to instantly create trust.

Building trust is one of the building blocks of a successful social media presence. Chris Brogan and Julien Smith wrote a fantastic book about the topic called Trust Agents. Most theories of trust state that it’s something that’s built up slowly over time. But what if you could instantly be perceived as somebody who was trustworthy? As it turns out, there’s a little known secret to this, and it starts with having your hands in what Bowden calls the “TruthPlane”.

3. You can manufacture passion

That’s right, passion can be manufactured.  Although we’ve been taught that it’s the other way around, there are things that you can do with your body that will make you seem more enthusiastic about what you are presenting, and thus more likely to inspire with your message.  Watch a few minutes of this video of Gary Vaynerchuk and pay attention to what he’s doing with his body.

Pay particular attention to where Gary’s hands are for the majority of time while he’s speaking. He’s gesturing in what Mark Bowden would call the PassionPlane - the area at and around chest height. If you’ve watched any of Gary’s Wine Library TV videos you’ll know that he’s a pretty passionate and enthusiastic guy, and he’d probably also tell you that the passion comes first and then naturally uses that body language when he gets passionate. But with all people who have been doing things for such a long time that it becomes a habit, they don’t know exactly how they are doing it. So try this on for size - have your hands in the PassionPlane the next time you are speaking to somebody - see if you notice a difference in your energy level.

What are your tips for making more compelling online video?

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