We all know the importance of content marketing in this digital era. Through creating and sharing material that shows your enthusiasm and expertise, you can get people talking about you and win the support of your target audience. But there’s a lot of competition out there, so there are questions you need to answer. What should you focus on? How should you work?

Well, the answer to the first question is easy: video. Video content is attention-grabbing, vibrant, incredibly popular, and perfect for carrying everything from creative storytelling to step-by-step instructions. The answer to the second question is tougher, because there’s a lot that goes into making videos. One thing is sure, though: you need to get in front of the camera.

It may sound daunting, or even embarrassing. Not everyone likes that kind of exposure. But if you want to grow your personal brand and pursue your grandest ambitions, it’s vital that you push past that reluctance. Here’s why:

Your personality is key to getting support

Think about the brands — and brand representatives — that you like. What draws you to them? Is it the quality of their content, or the value they bring to the table? To some extent, absolutely, but personality will also play a huge role. By appearing on camera, you can communicate your personality much more powerfully than you ever could through text content alone.

Everything from your body language to your tone of voice will affect how you’re viewed. As Orion Talmay puts it in her tips for women appearing on camera, it doesn’t matter as much as you might think that you’re not face-to-face with the viewers: “they’ll still be able to feel your energy through the screen”. Exude enthusiasm for what you do, and it’ll shine through.

It’ll help you greatly with networking

Like it or not, networking is a big part of getting ahead as an entrepreneur. Attending events, meeting people in relevant fields, introducing them to what you do — building up connections that will prove both personally and professionally useful in the long term. This is particularly important for women still facing major institutional obstacles.

What does this have to do with video? It’s simple: appearing on even modestly-popular videos will seriously improve your recognizability, helping you get noticed at networking events and giving you something to talk about. If you happen upon someone who likes your videos, they’ll be far more likely to be interested in listening to your overall story. They’ll also have an easy way to support you (sharing your videos on social media).

Your sales pitches will improve dramatically

Being proactive is central to the entrepreneurial life. Barring exceptional circumstances, prospective clients won’t chase you to offer you deals, so you need to get out there and earn those deals by convincing people that you’re worthy of investment. It’s something that plenty of seasoned entrepreneurs struggle with — how do you straddle the line between getting overly pushy and staying too quiet for anyone to take notice?

Real-world practice will definitely help, of course (every time you pitch to someone, you’ll get a better understanding of what works and what doesn’t), but getting in front of the camera will also make a big difference through honing your articulation. Think about all the component parts of a great pitch: the confidence, the timing, the clear speech, the attentive expression. They’re all vital elements of a great talking-head video. Improve one, and you’ll improve the other.

Creating video content is an exceptional way to further your entrepreneurial ambitions, but don’t settle for featuring others. By appearing in your videos, you can show your personality, boost your networking efforts, and help you become better at pitching.

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