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A Speaker’s Guide to Virtual Events

Like it or not, it appears virtual events aren’t going anywhere any time soon.

Instead of lamenting about it, we might as well embrace the idea of appearing on camera in order to connect with our customers and clients.

Keep this checklist nearby as you prep for next virtual event.

TECHNOLOGY
Yes, we all can easily log onto our mobile devices for a virtual event, but using a laptop or desktop computer is ideal. They already have built-in webcams and microphones, so you don’t need to worry about getting overwhelmed with connecting additional devices. If possible, connecting directly to your internet router through an ethernet cable or setting up as close to your router as possible will provide a more solid connection. If a laptop or desktop computer is not an option, make sure your mobile device is fully charged with the latest updates installed.

VIDEO
In terms of video, make sure your laptop or mobile is eye-level. Prop your laptop on a box or a stack of books if you don’t have the ability to raise it up any other way. If you’re using a mobile device, a tripod would be ideal. Give yourself enough headroom that you end up in the middle of the frame. Also make sure your background is appropriate. Don’t set up in a cluttered area that would make the viewer divert their attention from you. If you decide to use a digital background, double-check it works for the event.

LIGHTING
Natural lighting can be achieved by setting up with a window in front of you, if your virtual event takes place during the day. Otherwise, you could always invest in a ring light which could be set up in front of your laptop or mobile device. Never set up a light behind you.

ATTIRE
Wear what makes you comfortable and will not constrict your movement. Solid colors are always best! Make sure your hair doesn’t cover your eyes. If you choose to wear makeup, use just enough so the lighting doesn’t wash out your face. If you normally wear makeup, do your makeup as you normally would. You want to look polished and natural like how people are used to seeing you on a daily basis. If you appear shiny (whether you’re wearing makeup or not), dab on some translucent powder to add a matte effect.

PRACTICE YOUR SCRIPT
Set aside time to run through the program before the actual run-through. Practice in front of a mirror so you are aware of any mannerisms that could be distracting to viewers. Speak clearly, project your voice and use your diaphragm (not your lungs) to project. Then, record yourself so you can see and hear how you sound. It’s alright to have notes and naturally look down at them, but you also want to be aware of the audience watching you. Talk to the camera because you are talking to them. Mistakes and fumbles happen, but the show must go on—give yourself grace! If you have to restart the sentence, go ahead and do it.

Finally, always remember to thank your audience for watching.

JenniferPascua HeadshotWritten by Jennifer A. Pascua, Content Engagement Manager, Serendipity Media.

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