Noah Mittman tells us how to make videos that yield results. No nonsense, to the point, videos that you can produce today! Noah schools us on how to get it done and make it work!
– the video 80/20 rule and why it matters
-how to be clear in your message
-how to work with what you have and make it impressive!
Noah Mittman is the Founder & CEO of Snowman Films. He’s a full-time filmmaker, video coach, family man, and entrepreneur. He’s been a filmmaker for 14 years now, and an entrepreneur for 8 years.
He helps course creators STOP Waiting and START Creating their video courses. While most course creators struggle with communicating their message successfully, he helps them make their message into video so they can create the course that will change the world.
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Noah Mittman Podcast Transcription
[00:13:42] Kris Ward: Hey everyone. It’s Chris ward and welcome to win the hour. When the day today we have Noah Mittman on the show and he is the guy that’s going to help us get out of our own way. When it comes to videos. I can’t even wait to dive into this conversation. There’s so much happening as far as social media and how you have to have videos out all the time and all this other stuff.
[00:14:04] So Noah’s going to talk to us about how we can make our videos look more polished and professional without spending a bunch of money. Welcome to the show, Noah,
[00:14:13] Noah Mittman: thank you so much for having me.
[00:14:15] Kris Ward: Okay, Noah, let’s just dive right in. Okay. First of all, let’s start with the obvious we need to be using videos.
[00:14:22] Is that correct?
[00:14:23] Noah Mittman: Yeah. Video, I think is just what people expect at this point with content. And it’s it’s video with video is in King context is King, but videos right there as well.
[00:14:36] Kris Ward: Okay. So we need to be using video. We need to be using it often. And also really I think to the old style of having it all polished and highly produced and stuff, budget aside, that’s not the way it’s, that’s not where the action’s at.
[00:14:51] Is that correct?
[00:14:52] Noah Mittman: Yeah. I mean, you don’t need to feel scared because you don’t have the best equipment and you don’t have, you know, $10,000 in gear. Uh, you have a fantastic camera in your pocket right now called your phone. Okay.
[00:15:07] Kris Ward: Okay. So we’ve got the phone. Now I know this one, I’m looking at other people and you’re scrolling and I see people all the time.
[00:15:13] You’re like, Oh my gosh. So doing videos of things that like in the middle of the grocery aisle, if they’re like somebody that focused on your, on nutrition or something, I think, Oh, I haven’t, I would never think to do that. Right. So I think. What the key thing is, is to stop thinking so much and to just to sharp start shooting videos.
[00:15:30] Is that correct?
[00:15:31] Noah Mittman: That’s exactly right. Yeah. So kind of my mantra and actually the title of my Facebook group as well is to stop waiting and start creating. It is less about perfectionism. This is actually, it kind of goes di dive right into, I have kind of three secrets or tips that I give to kind of make your videos look more professional without spending a bunch of money.
[00:15:53] And actually the first one, is that getting out of your own head in your own way on what you think things should look like is really important because, uh, especially right now, uh, we’re in the middle of this global pandemic for context. And, uh, Jimmy Fallon has been recording night show from his house on his phone.
[00:16:16] And did you care?
[00:16:17] Kris Ward: I didn’t like it. That’s fine.
[00:16:21] Noah Mittman: I
[00:16:21] Kris Ward: learned so many lessons from that. I got to jump in. I tell you the first time I saw, and I think he was the first one of the big league players to do that. And then he does it and then he’s got his kids drawing cartoons and holding it up. And suddenly now here’s my thinking.
[00:16:36] It’s like, Oh, well now. Now that looks too cute. Like now it’s like, Oh, why didn’t I think of that? Why don’t I have a toddler drawing pictures to me like, Oh, that’s the way to go. So it’s like the new model, but it really was eye-opening to me that, you know, he didn’t have good lighting. He didn’t, and we all went through the hair pandemic.
[00:16:52] Didn’t have good hair. And then he’s got kids interrupting him, which actually just exposed again, that he’s the gentle guy behind the scenes that you see in front of the camera. So it really that’s what, I didn’t hear a thing. He said, I just kept looking at all the, you know, and then I think he was in a cabin somewhere where I would have been like, Oh, there’s clutter behind me, or I need a nicer place or a better background.
[00:17:11] Like I would’ve over-thought that seven ways to Sunday.
[00:17:15] Noah Mittman: Right. But he just put it out and he just kind of moved forward. And that’s, you know, I think that’s really the key to like getting going is, uh, there are things you can control, but there’s also just stuff that you can’t control and you don’t need to worry about because people care less about it than you think.
[00:17:32] Uh, I think a good rule for that is like, if you’re 80% happy with. You know what you’ve set up and how it’s looking and all that. Don’t worry about that extra 20%. Cause it’s just going to, it’s going to take a ton of time to do a headache and you, you really just need to get going on it. You really need to start.
[00:17:50] Um, so that’s, I think that’s the main thing is, you know, use your. Phone, uh, the other thing on this is that, uh, for gears, especially if you are thinking about a camera, honestly, unless you’re going to spend over a thousand dollars on a camera, your phone is just fine. Uh, because most of us, maybe we’re on a payment plan and stuff, but we’ve invested close to a thousand dollars in our phone.
[00:18:13] So. They really worked a lot on the technology of the cameras. And, uh, it’s, it’s just, it’s really solid place to start. Uh, and again, even if it’s a little bit, you know, Jakey or there’s, you know, whatever going on, uh, quality-wise Jimmy, Jimmy Fallon has led the way and just, you know, trust that. I know that it’s fine.
[00:18:35] Kris Ward: And I think most of us by now know the power of the iPhone. I think when we look for excuses is, Oh, I need better audio or I need better lighting, or I need a better self-esteem. And, and then this is just permission for distraction is, Oh, okay. I’ll order that when that comes in and I’ll make a plan. So that buys me another two weeks to do whatever.
[00:18:53] And then I even saw speaking of Jimmy Fallon, Hey Jimmy, are you listening? We can have you on the show. Then it’s beginning the one day they just walking down the street with his wife, talking about how they met and it’s just a selfie stick in him. So I think it really is again, talking about overthinking it.
[00:19:11] And I know it, and I’ve seen people one time. I saw one of my, uh, For lack of better word. She was like a mentor to me and she did this little thing while she was driving through McDonald’s. Cause she had this big event that day and she was making a joke of saying, okay, this is my, this is how I prepare for big events.
[00:19:29] And she’s getting some awful with Donald’s breakfast. So I, and she was very humorous and very funny. And like, I would have been like, Oh my gosh, like I would’ve over-thought. Where’s the background. What will I say? Like I just wouldn’t I get the camera part, but I would over-thought the content and the visuals and unless I’m somewhere really good, you know, I just would’ve over-thought it.
[00:20:59] Noah Mittman: So actually that’s perfect. That leads me into, uh, another kind of tip on how to easily make your stuff more professional looking without really doing much of anything.
[00:21:09] And that is to have, and you got this down with your background, um, is to really just ask yourself a question on what with what you’re recording is, does your background represent you and your business and the way that you want it to. And if it does then awesome, like yours, I get it. That’s you got your book, you got, you know, real simple white.
[00:21:31] It’s fantastic. And if it doesn’t then what can you bring or put on the wall or like move to a different room to make it actually, you know, put some art up, make it express who you are and what you, what you care about a little bit more.
[00:21:47] Kris Ward: Okay, so that’s a good, that’s a really good point. Let me jump in there.
[00:21:49] So what happened was I’ve just recently moved and I mean, new location, I’ve got this great office, so painted the worldwide and there was a listing, an auto, and I’m just going to this little black cube thing, like a shelf. And in there I have my book and the outsourcing playbook for busy entrepreneurs, mugs and swag and stuff like that.
[00:22:05] Very simple. And now I appreciate your compliment Noah, but at the same time, I sometimes get jealous when I look at other people and they’ve got a whole room and bookshelves and I think, Oh, okay. I love my office then I think, Oh, is there, is there enough fabric and texture and interests behind me where other people have more interesting things.
[00:22:23] So you’re complimenting me on the simplicity and I’m thinking, ah, you know, is there lights I can have or whatever. So I think, I think how many times can I see this? I keep thinking we just overthink everything. So that’s for like, for the podcast, I have this, but back to, you know, my friend in McDonald’s, so she just shot a video anywhere.
[00:22:44] Right. In fact, then it makes it more interesting because you’re trying to figure out where is she and there’s different locations. So that’s another thing is sometimes I get over organized and then I just shoot them the same location all the time,
[00:22:55] Noah Mittman: which is fine because the other thing I’ll say on that is, you know, she’s at McDonald’s and she’s somewhere else.
[00:23:00] It depends on the style of video that you’re doing. Like if you’re broadening and just bringing somebody along for your day, Great. If you’re trying to deliver information and really teach something, which a lot of my audience is course creators. You’re trying to actually like educate people with your content.
[00:23:17] You don’t actually want too much in the back. You can have a bad, like, my background has a lot going on. I’m actually at my mom’s house right now and she’s watching the kids. And, um, that’s fine, but like having minimal distractions, having really being able to focus on your message is the main thing. So it’s good to like change up locations, but.
[00:23:38] Again, you have that simple background that kind of vague that it’s like home base that they know with your content. They know they’re coming to see this. They know that, you know, it’s like, uh, any of the, you know, take Philip de Franco on YouTube. He has a studio. He has his place where he kind of does your show and we all are comfortable with that.
[00:23:55] So the main thing again is yes. Make it interesting, but don’t make it so crazy. That is taking away from your message. Your message is really what you need.
[00:24:05] Kris Ward: Yeah. And I guess at the end of the day, If your contents good. Right. Then your contents. Good. Right. And so then we always make excuses. I do anyhow, I’ll say, Oh, well, that’s Jimmy Fallon.
[00:24:20] So everybody’s going to watch him because he’s funny. And his content is good or, Oh, that’s this big influencer. So it’s okay that he does his podcast in his car, which I would never in a million years and have no interest in doing right. But I guess that’s it. We’re always making sure. Excuses why we’re just looking at shiny, not shiny object syndrome, but I call it shiny distraction.
[00:24:41] Noah Mittman: Yeah.
[00:24:42] Kris Ward: Yeah. Just like, Oh, well he gets a free pass because of whatever. So, okay. If the content is good, then the content is good and people will forgive everything else and just get it done and get it right.
[00:24:54] Noah Mittman: That’s the main thing I think is, you know, all of this stuff is extra. Like really you can set up.
[00:24:59] Anywhere that you want. And if you’re feeling good and professional about it, and you’re like, your energy’s there and your, your messages there, then you’re going to be able to build an audience. All that really all the other stuff is extras. But the main thing to think about again with your background is like, Is there is anything distracting.
[00:25:15] And does it represent me in a way that I want, like, if you have your garage behind you, it’s probably not going to be the best
[00:25:20] Kris Ward: setup. Yeah. And you know what, w I w I was in this little cottage for a couple of years cause I was in transition and it was cute, cute little place, but let’s emphasize the word little.
[00:25:30] So I did not have a lot of time. And so when I was at say pitching somebody to be on their podcast, cause I do a lot of podcasts. What I did is I stood in front of my computer and I actually use their website or podcast as my screen is on my screen. It filled my screen and had them over my shoulder showing like lay, I was just looking at your stuff.
[00:25:48] So when I was lacking space and room, I just put whatever I wanted on my computer and stood in
[00:25:53] Noah Mittman: front of it. Yeah. Exactly
[00:25:55] Kris Ward: right.
[00:25:56] Noah Mittman: Just to get a little bit creative. That’s all it is. I mean, that’s all, anything is that that’s what Jimmy Fallon was doing. He was just getting through with his situation and that’s always, I think, appreciated by an audience and that’s like them, you know, they can be impressed with your ability to kind of think on the fly.
[00:26:11] Kris Ward: Fabulous. Okay. Tell us some other things that you see out there that we’re either doing wrong or overthinking, or we could do better.
[00:26:18] Noah Mittman: So this is the third and final tip to kind of. easily make your videos a little bit better without spending money. And that is to focus on your lighting. So a lot of times I see people in less lit situations or the kind of blend in with their background.
[00:26:36] Um, the, the way that you can fix it, even just at home is take a lamp from your house and put it behind and above where your cameras set up. Uh, when you’re filming and that just kind of puts a little bit of light on your face and that helps you pop out from the background. And that does a world of difference, especially starting
[00:26:57] Kris Ward: out.
[00:26:58] I think that’s really important. We don’t have to be, you know, expert in lighting because I know for me, I am passionate about my standing desk. Love it for so many reasons. So what happens is I have my standing desk here and then I have a couple of lights and stuff for different purposes. And because of my style, I’m used to using my standing desk and I’m standing tall and my lights had to be teller and tell her that it wasn’t working out.
[00:27:19] And I was buying, I was starting to buy more and lot more lights and trying to figure it out. And then I just realized, Oh my heavens, I had one on behind my. Desk might be behind my computer where you’re right behind the camera and it just leans over and shines down on me. So I went from three lights to one and it was far more flattering.
[00:27:38] I’m here to tell you it would reverse time, about 12 years. Cause there was some days I was like,
[00:27:42] Noah Mittman: that’s what a good light does.
[00:27:45] Kris Ward: Is it me? And my age, you’re magically what’s happening here. I looked like one of those characters on Walt Disney where like things go bad for them. And they started at me.
[00:27:56] Lighting is if it goes the wrong way, it is not your friend. So what I’m here to tell you is buying more lighting is not the answer. Just play with it, move it around
[00:28:04] Noah Mittman: and, and even simpler than that too. Like if you have a situation or a setup where you can be kind of next to a window, window is awesome.
[00:28:12] Source of light and kind of a hint, a little tip to like, make that even softer because sometimes when the light, if it’s 2%, he’s like really harsh. Um, so if you have a white bed sheet or even like a poster presentation poster board that has like the tape on the sticky part on top, put that over your window and it diffuses the light a little bit and just makes it really pretty and easy and not hard to look at.
[00:28:38] Kris Ward: Right. Okay. So we are getting caught up in our own vanity, but we are human. So such as life, right? Like, yeah. So that’s fine. Okay. What tell us, so those are really important tips now, but I’m sure you see stuff. And those are three great, big, broad strokes, but I’m sure you see more done wrong than done correctly.
[00:29:00] So just keep going, because this is, this is really helpful stuff. Throw us
[00:29:03] Noah Mittman: another one. Um, let’s see. Let’s go a little bit to, uh, the actual like performance side of it. So the camera confidence, cause that’s a big problem that I see is people kind of, not only are they afraid of like the perfectionism, but like once that record button gets hit, everybody like freaks out.
[00:29:21] Um, so there’s a couple of things you can do to kind of help yourself be more confident and comfortable on camera. Um, and actually have a, a freebie that I give out as a guide on this as well. Um, but the first one is. To instead of like, thinking about while you’re filming, instead of thinking about like the entire audience of like faceless people that this could possibly go to just focus on one person that you’re trying to help.
[00:29:47] And, uh, ideally one person that, you know, like a family member or friend, somebody that you can really help with your stuff. I really like your favorite client, whatever it is. That’s perfect. I love that. Take have a photo of them even, and print it out and put it next to your camera while you’re filming.
[00:30:06] Cause then you can literally just talk to them. And energy that you’re putting off to your audience will be like, you’re talking to a friend, which is exactly
[00:30:13] Kris Ward: what it should be. And you’re so right, because I think what happened is too, I did this a lot in the beginning is then you go into presentation mode because you’re trying to, and you’ll say things, you sort of saying global things like, you know, you and your team and everyone, and then you start and try this.
[00:30:27] Speak broader and broader because now you realize, Oh, you may be doing this. Maybe you do that. And you’re, you’re just keeping, expanding the audience, but you’re not in front of a thousand people. You’re, you know, you were talking to one person at a time.
[00:30:38] Noah Mittman: That’s the hard thing is you really are talking to, even if you have a, you know, a hundred thousand person audience you are at when, when they watch it, you’re talking to one person.
[00:30:48] Kris Ward: Yeah, absolutely. Okay. That will help a lot with camera confidence. Continue.
[00:30:54] Noah Mittman: Yeah. So I’ll kind of keep diving into camera confidence actually. Um, and another thing that can help with, uh, the vibe and kind of the feeling, uh, is in your preparation. So not just like when you hit record, but before you hit record.
[00:31:09] So if you want to play music that you like, or you don’t like, you’re staying at your favorite stand-up comedian, so you kind of get into the vibe and like they get, you know, that little dance party going. Instead of the deafening, silence me, whatever up you’re sweating. You’re freaking out like have fun with it.
[00:31:25] Have, you know, put on what’s your what’s like, what’s your favorite? Go-to like pump up song.
[00:31:30] Kris Ward: Me, uh, I, my dark secret, I’m a Rocky girl. I’m all over Rocky that changes anything in any day. Don’t even get me started.
[00:31:41] Noah Mittman: Yeah. But again, you put that on and you’re going to be in a good mood and you’re going to kind of have that fun time.
[00:31:46] And then as soon, you know, just stop it and hit record and you carry that energy over into what you’re doing, which is huge. It’s really. It’s really about mindset and kind of the head space that you’re in while you’re recording,
[00:31:57] Kris Ward: which is super important, good point, because I don’t do that. I do believe in energy and I do believe in making sure, like, I, I try to be positive and in the right frame, Ryan, and we’re going to have some fun and just talk to people.
[00:32:09] Um, but I am racing in my head trying to figure out how am I going to say this in the shortest time possible and be effective. So now I’m in thinking mode, which is, you know, not fun, Chris, it’s intellectual get in your own way, Chris. Right? So that’s a really. Super important point because it just never occurred to me to do that.
[00:32:25] I’ve used that, like I’ve been in meetings where let’s say something like I was in a meeting not too long ago and something was going off the tracks and it, and the interview was, and I said, we need to take a break. I’m going to come back in five minutes. And I did listen to music and I listen to a comedian for a few minutes and came back and said, okay, because there was a frustration and I needed to move on.
[00:32:44] Bored with this and it needed to be fun and I needed to change my energy. So I believe in that power, but I wasn’t tapping into that before I did a video. I mean, I think I’m high energy and people tell me all the time and fun, but I could still have more fun. You can always have more fun. Right.
[00:33:00] Noah Mittman: And it should be fun.
[00:33:01] Like, I need that. Like, this is my passion and this is what I’ve been doing since high school. But like, it that I like everybody should have that like fun feeling, making movies or. Whatever it is to get excited about. Uh, it’s just, it’s a good time. It’s why we all go to the movies just to have fun. So you’re kind of creating your own little movie in your house and, you know, they have fun on set and you should have fun on your set.
[00:33:24] Kris Ward: it doesn’t translate. And you know what, this, I don’t know if this is random, but I’m going to share it with you. Cause it’s on my mind. I remember a while back, I watched a documentary, it was horrifying to me. I watch a documentary and it was about, uh, the porn industry and what was happening. God, I could not imagine this.
[00:33:40] What was happening is they made so many billions and billions of dollars off video. And now with the whole. The YouTube invention, everything what’s happening. And this just boggles my mind. Like no business. What was happening is people were recording camera confidence. People were recording their own porn and uploading it.
[00:33:59] So it was cutting into the porn industry and they lost like 80% of their marketplace because now there’s homemade porn that everyone was posting and could watch. And when people say camera competence to me, I think my God. And alcohol
[00:34:14] Noah Mittman: as well. That’s going to be, that’s going to be my new hook for my product is, Hey, be like a homemade porn star with hammer
[00:34:20] Kris Ward: confidence, but it almost cripples the porn industry.
[00:34:24] They had to start doing it differently because everybody just uploading their own stuff. And I thought in a million years on it, 10 planets would I have never thought, Oh, that will be a problem. Yeah. So there’s lots of people out there with the camera confidence and I will ever. Ever possess.
[00:34:42] Noah Mittman: That’s okay.
[00:34:43] This is funny because this is actually a perfect lead into the next tip for camera confidence, which is if you absolutely cannot chill out and like have fun with it. Um, have a, just the first time, I’m not saying every time and this may be your thing, or it may not be, I will say that, uh, take a shot or have a gear or have a glass of wine to kind of loosen you up a little bit.
[00:35:05] I’m not saying do it every time you record, but that, you know, having some sort of drink. Kind of gets you
[00:35:12] Kris Ward: do what you gotta do to get
[00:35:14] Noah Mittman: through that the first wall. Yeah. It kind of gets you gets you going in that first time,
[00:35:19] Kris Ward: you got to shoot at eight 30 in the morning and try to control that wall because we don’t want to hear you.
[00:35:24] And another thing I said. Yes,
[00:35:28] Noah Mittman: definitely. You know, don’t, don’t let it get out of hand, but, you know, Hey, if that’s what starts you actually recording and creating then cheers from Noah.
[00:35:36] Kris Ward: Gotcha. Okay.
[00:35:38] Noah Mittman: I think the last thing that kind of plays into both of them, uh, with both making it look professional and making you more confident about it is if you have, especially for courses, if you have a content, like pre-written out, that, you know, you want to talk about, um, You need the thing that’s helped me a ton with both time efficiency and confidence is using a teleprompter.
[00:36:03] Um, you can actually download a teleprompter app to your phone, and I write everything, you know, for my content. I really scripted out other than like, you know, the podcasts and stuff. So I really, uh, go deep and detailed with. What I’m saying. So I literally just read it off of my teleprompter. And I looked at like this well-spoken amazing, you know, efficient and you know, professional guy.
[00:36:27] And I’m really just reading it with a little bit more energy. It’s a huge time saver. I would also
[00:36:32] Kris Ward: add to that. Cause you know, sometimes you get caught up in the reading as well, or sometimes it’s hard to write it, like you’re talking. And one of the other things too, more and more people want really bite-sized pieces of information.
[00:36:43] So when we do our outsourcing playbook for busy entrepreneurs and guys, you can get on the waiting list now because we’re launching that and there’s gonna be crazy giveaways. And what I do is I shoot the segments in like 10 minutes segments. So micro-learning, it’s really good for the consumer. The one that’s consuming it, the consumption.
[00:36:59] But for me then it’s like, then you don’t go off on a tangent saying, you know, you start sidebar information. And then you’re like, did I already say that? Or whatever. So keeps it tighter when it’s shorter. And that way you can just have some bullet points and if you do digress and go off the rails, you’re going off the rails for like two minutes, not, you know, not whatever.
[00:37:18] Noah Mittman: Exactly. And I mean, that really helps even for, you know, for say like social media posting, like Instagram, where, or take talk where you have to do 60 seconds or less. I’ve literally written a script and it’s like, you know, a minute and 10 seconds and I’m like, okay, I got to cut 10 seconds out of this.
[00:37:34] Uh, and that really gets you to be a more effective creator with the, you know, having a plan.
[00:37:39] Kris Ward: Yeah, that’s a great point. And again, if I can add to that, what I would say is I’m comfortable speaking off the fly. Once I knew my main points and what we do is when I shoot my video, then we get that transcribed and we turn that into a post.
[00:37:53] Noah Mittman: See, that’s a good point. That’s a good tip is, is, you know, using, using the tools to kind of make different styles of content off of what you’re doing. I love that.
[00:38:04] Kris Ward: Yes. Yeah. Awesome. Cool. Noah, it’s been a pleasure talking to you. We could, uh, we could have you call me back on Thursdays, you know? All right.
[00:38:13] So we can find you.
[00:38:16] Noah Mittman: Totally, totally. So, uh, I, uh, my big, uh, kind of cushion and presence right now is on Facebook. Um, my, I have a group there that kind of gets you into my world. He didn’t get you on my email list if you want. Uh, it’s called stop waiting and start creating video content. Great
[00:38:32] Kris Ward: name, great name.
[00:38:34] Noah Mittman: And that’s. I mean, that’s another thing having kind of a, when you do make stuff for social, having kind of a call to action, or like the result that people are wanting is a really great way to start.
[00:38:47] Kris Ward: Yeah,
[00:38:47] Noah Mittman: fabulous.
[00:38:48] Kris Ward: No, it’s been a pleasure. These were very valid points and, uh, and I enjoyed it very much, everyone else until the next episode.
[00:38:55] Thank you very much. Thanks again, Noah.
[00:38:57] Noah Mittman: Thank you so much.