The 5 biggest mistakes I see in online video

Every once in a while I still pinch myself. I feel so incredibly lucky to be spending my time helping become become phenomenal storytellers and to speak on camera without any fear. I feel like I’m right where I’m meant to be, teaching something natural and helping people blossom in the process. Apparently, CNBC agrees (squee!). They asked for my insights on the biggest mistakes I see in online videos and how people can rock out on camera instead. Here’s the full article… and here’s a taste:

Anyone with a smartphone and a few minutes can make a video. Add an internet connection, and you can share it with the world.

And that’s not always a good thing.

You can do harm to your brand by creating videos that turn people off, instead of making them more curious. Video is a powerful medium, but there’s no point in using video unless you know what to say, and how to present it to your audience. Period.

I don’t believe that anyone is inherently bad on camera. But it doesn’t hurt to have the right tools to feel confident and poised while sharing. With the right preparation, anyone can speak with purpose and passion.

Here are five of the most common mistakes I see when watching online videos, with suggestions for improvement.

1. The video is too long. One of the biggest turn-offs for customers is that a video is just too darn long. Too often, people try to pack more information into one video than is necessary to make their point. People have short attention spans, especially when they’re online.

Solution: read it here.

2. The video has no clear purpose. If you don’t have a clear understanding of what the purpose of each and every video you post is, how will your viewers understand it? There are so many videos that ramble and never really offer great value for the viewer. Don’t be one of those.

Solution: read it here.

3. The video can’t be deciphered because of bad audio. I’m a huge fan of DIY videos, but it does require a bit of thought when it comes to choosing the right setting. It’ll drive your viewers insane if they can’t hear what you’re saying.

Solution: read it here.

4. You’re not giving viewers what they want. If you want to create a loyal following, you have to give people information that’s valuable to them. It’s that simple. What are the most common questions you get asked by readers or potential clients? Focus on those. Think about where your real knowledge is and make the point of allowing your audience to see a different side of you and your brand on camera. People want something with huge value, and they want to get it from someone they can relate to and believe in. Make it your goal to become that spokesperson and offer huge value on a regular basis.

Solution: read it here.

5. You’re trying way too hard to be perfect. I always have people asking me about how to change this or that about how they talk, how they move and how they look. Sometimes, changes are totally necessary, but most of the time our natural inclination is to focus on the small things about ourselves that tend to drive us completely mad, like an inability to say a strong R or the way our hands move when we talk. Sure, we could spend hours doing exercises to make ourselves “perfect,” but is that what people really want? No. They want a human being.

Solution: read it here.




  1. Alejandra said:

    Hi Ellie! What a VIDEO genius you are! I’m addicted to your blog posts! This is my favourite one.

    I live in London (UK), just enrolled to B-School and started looking for Media experts right away – you are the ONLY ONE that stood out in the crowd. So here I am!

    Producing some serious short videos has always been part of my business plan (info products, weight loss for busy stressed-out professional women and new moms).

    When you said “imperfection” is endearing, I felt a huge relief. I am articulate, not shy (the opposite), but do have a Latin accent!

    What’s been holding me back is: Can this accent really break into English speaking markets?

    On one hand, 50% of London city workers are NOT from the UK. London is a very diverse, multi-talented environment. And almost everyone has an accent including people from other parts of the UK, like Wales, Scottland, Ireland and North England.

    However, I am yet to find a popular female v-logger around with ANY accent that succeeded in the UK and/or US.

    What are your thoughts on this? Do you think that people with an accent may need voice coaching?

    Also, should I use a professional studio for the more important (paid) content so the voice comes out clearer?

    Thank you!!



    • Ellie said:

      Hi Alejandra!

      Thanks so much for your sweet words. First of all, good for you for making video part of your business strategy! I love that you understand the huge value video can add & that you’re connecting with your audience in this way.

      As for an accent, it’s typically an advantage because it can make you stand out and instantly shares a bit of your story through how you speak. The only time I think it could get in the way is if people have a hard time understanding what you’re saying. So, I’d definitely flaunt your accent unless it’s actually taking away from your message by making it less clear.

      And, whether or not you should hire a professional crew totally depends on your unique situation. Connect with me through my contact page & give me the scoop on your next paid content you’d be shooting and I’d be happy to give you my two cents.



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