I’m a shy guy.
I don’t like to get too much attention.
And I don’t really enjoy being on camera that much.
If you’re just like me, but you still need to put out video content, you are on the right page.
In this post, I am going to share with you 15 different ways in which you can create videos without being on camera.
I got the idea for this post after I had several clients that are using our video editing services, but they did not want to be on camera.
When I first started I didn’t even know you can do that. But there are countless ways around it.
How cool is that?
So regardless if you’re doing this for an established business, a start-up, just for your personal brand or maybe as a hobby, you will be very likely to find down below at least one idea which you can take and implement right away.
As you may know, there’s a big hype around videos, and if you don’t start putting out video content right now you will be missing out on tons of opportunities.
You don’t need to take my word for it. Just check out these video marketing statistics posted by Forbes.
Alright, let’s get to it. Here are my top ways of creating videos without being on camera.
#1 Customer testimonials
If you already have a solid customer base and your clients are happy with what you are providing it’s a good idea to put together a customer testimonial video.
Make a small list of just 2-3 questions, put it in an email and ask your top-tier customers if they want to answer them and be featured in your upcoming video.
Everybody is busy, so it is very likely that your response rate will be low.
People don’t have time to read a half a page email. That’s why it is extremely important to send really short emails and to the point emails. No fluff.
Adding incentives such as discounts, free stuff or free publicity for those who join will increase your response rate. So definitely reward your customers in a way.
Here’s a really good example of a customer testimonial video made by the guys over at Slack:
#2 Screen share videos
If your videos are teaching people how to use a software, an app or how to do stuff on their computer you don’t really need to show your face at all.
Heck, you don’t even need a camera.
You can record your voice at the same time with the screen recording, and verbally explain to people what you are doing as you go, or you can record it a later stage and put in on top of your screen share video.
Adding text overlays, arrows, drawing boxes or highlighting stuff on your original screen share video will make it much easier to follow and more engaging.
On top of that, it will also make it look much more professional. So definitely take care of that when you edit the video. Pretty much any video editing software will do the job.
They are pretty similar to the screen share videos, but with these, you will have a more coherent script as you will be browsing to pre-written slides on whatever your topic is that you are touching.
Most of the times you will actually spend more time in putting together the slides than on creating the video itself.
If you want to get creative with it and you are good at drawing, instead of doing PowerPoint slides, you can make your own hand-written, or hand-designed slides and simply lay those out on a table as you film them. For best results, you can also try out various Powerpoint alternatives available in the market.
Slideshow videos usually work great for webinars.
#4 Point of view videos (GoPro)
With GoPros, and action cameras in general, becoming increasingly popular, point of view (POV) videos have exploded.
So if a POV video makes sense for the type of content you are after, give it a try. Simply attach your camera to any part of your body or maybe to your bike, car or whatever and start rolling.
Obviously, these type of videos will work if you are into action sports, if you vlog or if you travel a lot.
Heck, they even made an entire Hollywood movie out of POV shots. Here’s the trailer.
If you want to learn more about creating awesome POV videos, check out this article from Premium Beat.
And if you are new to using a GoPro camera, here’s a super long list of GoPro tips that will get you started in no time.
#5 Product reviews
Next, we have product review videos.
With these videos, all you need to do is take some good shots of your product and build your video based on that.
Focus on the product rather than on anything else. Show its features and get a variety of different shots. You want to have wide, medium and narrow shoots and combine the best of those in a really creative way.
Chose a background which is not distracting or use a green screen background and replace that with a subtle backdrop in the video editing stage. Here’s a quick guide on how to get started with creating green screen videos.
Keep your product review videos to 2 minutes for maximising engagement and make the very beginning of the video really catchy. User attention rates when watching videos online are down to 3 seconds or something around that incredibly low number.
#6 How to videos
How to videos are another huge category which works really, really good if don’t want to be on camera.
These type of video will work great for YouTube, but they will not perform so well on Facebook or Instagram for example. Check out this article for more info about what type of video content works best for which platform and how you can actually optimize your video content for a specific platform.
Depending on what your how-to video is about you can decide what kind of footage works best. If it’s making origami you could film your hands as you do the origami. If it’s about video editing, you could capture your screen as you do the edits or you can showcase your final edit.
Here’s an example.
There are literally tens of different ways you can do how to videos.
Obviously, depending on your particular subject, on some of them, you might actually need to show your face. How to shave is one random example that comes to my mind.
#7 Animated videos
There will probably fairly more difficult and time-consuming to put together than any other kind of video.
But they are highly engaging, shareable and you don’t need to be on camera. Actually, you may not need a camera at all.
You will need to be a talented designer though, or you will have to hire someone that is.
Animated videos work pretty much for any kind of topic and niche and you can get really creative with them. There literally are no boundaries to what you can create with them.
#8 Explainer videos
These will fall under the broader category of animated videos, but I felt that they deserve their own little section in this post, because they are so popular right now.
Explainer videos work great for corporate videos. They allow for an easy to follow, fun and engaging way of explaining what something is about.
They work particularly well when you need to explain a concept or something which is fairly complex and needs visuals to make it easier to be understood.
Take this video for example.
That’s a really cool explanation of a concept which is not that easy to explain using just words.
So whenever you need to explain something complicated to your audience, explainer videos are great.
#9 Kinetic typography
I guess these could be looked at as another category which falls under the animated vides umbrella.
The main characteristic of these videos is that they rely solely on using animated text. I’m sure you’ve seen them before. Here’s how they look.
So you are basically using funny, animated text overlays to get your message across.
Sometimes there’s also a voice over and the animated text is used only to emphasize some keywords.
Most of the times there are done using Adobe After Effects templates, so if you are into video editing you can give that a try.
#10 Stock footage videos
Using stock footage, free or paid, is another cool way or putting together videos.
Most of the times you will need to have a voice-over which tells the story of your video too. Then you simply find stock footage that works great with your topic and add that in.
You will probably need to do a ton of research` to gather all the right footage and then cut the right parts, but it’s well worth the effort.
Here’s an awesome video made out of 100% stock footage.
Taking it one step further, you can start shooting your own B-roll. Shoot anything that looks good on camera. Build yourself a personal library of stock footage which you can later use in your videos.
#11 Photo to video
Building your videos out of static images is another way of getting away with it without being on camera.
If you are not familiar with the Ken Burns effect check out this video of Mr. Ken Burns himself talking about how the effect was born.
In short, it’s that effect when you slowly zoom in or out of photo really, really slowly, or maybe you pan from one side of the photo to the other.
It basically gives a little bit of movement to static images.
#12 Mashup videos
Mashup videos are videos which are made out of small bits and pieces taken from other people’s videos.
I guess this might be a little bit on the grey side of copyright unless you can get everybody’s permission to use their bit of video, but I’ve seen a lot of them on YouTube lately.
So with mashup videos, you basically cut and stitch together the bits and pieces of 10,20 or 100 videos and put them together in a new video, in a creative way that doesn’t just copy the message of the original videos, but creates a new message and adds more value.
#13 Movie reviews
The naming is pretty self-explanatory.
There are pretty big YouTube channels out there which solely focus on doing movie reviews, talking about what movies are coming up next, or what the Hollywood actors have been up to.
So you basically use stills and footage from the movies, add your commentary on top of that and you’re done.
Obviously, this would work well if you like movies.
Here’s an example from Screen Junkies.
#14 Roundup videos
With roundup videos, you take what’s hot at the moment in a given industry or niche and you put together a video based on that.
So for example, if you are talking about mobile phones, your roundup video could feature the latest mobile phone releases, events, news and apps from the last week.
Roundup videos are great because there’s always going to will be tons of content you can cover at any time. Additionally, you can pick the bits and pieces of content that are more likely to go viral.
#15 Top 10 videos
People love top 10 videos. They tend to get a ton of traction on YouTube and they are a great way of getting viewers without being on camera.
You can make top 10 videos on pretty much any topic you can think of. There are top 10 history lesson, top 10 guitar players in the world, top 10 best athletes, top 10 fastest cars, top 10 travel destinations. It can be literally anything.
Here’s a good example of a top 10 video done by WatchMojo.
So there you have it – 15 different ways to create videos without being on camera.
Customer testimonials. product reviews, explainer videos, SlideShare and screen share videos work great for business.
While PoV, mashup, roundup and top 10 videos will work better for individuals or small start-ups.
Pick the one which suits your vertical best, and get started with video production right now.
Cristian Stanciu is a freelance video editor, owner, and post-production coordinator of Veedyou Media – a company offering video editing services to videographers, marketing agencies, video production studios, or brands all over the globe.