Note from Laura Christianson: I connected with Laura Frantz several years ago, when I noticed she was doing amazing things on Pinterest. I interviewed her and used her success story as a case study during my Pinterest workshops.
Last week, Laura told me she’s been following my posts about the exploding popularity of social video and live video streaming. She had created her first video but was having trouble uploading it to her Facebook Page. I helped her upload and publish her video.
Within three days, it had been viewed over 1,000 times, reached more than 3,400 Facebook users, received more than 100 reactions and over 40 comments. Not bad for a 51-second video!
Many of you have told me that you struggle with video, so I asked Laura to share candidly about her first experience with video. I know her words will encourage you.
My First Facebook Video Experience
By Laura Frantz
I well remember the day my publisher’s email came round that invited us authors to try video as a way of making a fresh connection with readers. I’ve never pressed DELETE so fast in my life.
Since I’ve spent the last three decades cropping myself out of countless photos, the prospect of video is especially scary, a living, breathing entity that is simply not croppable or even editable, at least for amateur me. There you are, exposed, staring at the unseen few who are gracious enough to watch as you stumble through a few forced lines and hope you don’t hyperventilate so loudly that it’s audible.
Being cyber-unsavvy, I even lack the skills or devices to do it properly. My phone is not particularly smart, certainly not the professional quality I long for and Charles Martin seems to have perfected (a favorite author who is as compelling in video format as he is on paper).
Besides, I like being someone who remains rather anonymous and no one has seen outside a carefully posed author photo.
But social media is ever changing and I must change with it.
So one afternoon after several hours spent getting the car serviced and then shopping at Costco, I suddenly, inexplicably, decided today was the day! I ran upstairs to the cabin loft, sat down at my desk, angled my phone just so, and pressed RECORD.
I didn’t have any clue what to say, not even the slightest dress rehearsal. For 51 seconds I rolled my eyes and talked rather redundantly about books, hoping my few viewers (victims) would focus on the artful quilt on the wall behind me and the picture of my latest hero crowning my office bookshelf. I hadn’t even washed and styled my hair!
The next hurdle was watching it without wincing. And weighing whether or not I could actually gather the gumption to post it – or in my case, figure out how to post it.
I mentally calculated all that was terribly wrong with this video debut – my hair was lopsided and my bangs were windblown.
I had an annoying habit of looking off camera.
Why had I never noticed my teeth were so crooked?
Would anyone understand my southern speech?
When I set down the pen I was holding at 15 seconds, it sounded loud as a gunshot! Why was that? Video seemed to magnify the slightest sound, even a growling stomach.
Last but not least, I kept mentioning the day, the time, etc. Mercy, I was NOT made for video!
So I shared it as soon as I figured out how to post it (hours later) but it was eventually seen and I survived.
Now I’m faced with doing video 2. And I’ve learned something. Viewers (or in my case, readers) are often made happy seeing you unvarnished, a bit nervous, stepping out of your comfort zone to try to connect with them, even if it’s not worthy of a Pulitzer Prize.
I’ve decided I just need to get over myself and do it. It’s not hard, it’s even a bit fun, and it requires more courage than anything. So try it. Connect. Be real. I’ll be watching.
About the Author
Laura Frantz is the bestselling, award-winning author of eight historical novels with Revell Books. Her current release, A Moonbow Night, is set in her beloved home state and incorporates a little known incident in the life of Daniel Boone. She lives and writes in a log cabin in the heart of Kentucky.
Learn more about Laura and her books at LauraFrantz.net.
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