How to Look Great on Zoom Calls: 5 Tips to Enhance Your Zoom Calls
Here at Nomadic Creatives Ltd. we know the importance of looking good on camera. From helping run online conferences to offering tips to celebrities such as Heston Blumenthal during the IAB UK Podcast Upfronts project, we know what it takes to enhance your video calls.
We are recording lots of Zoom calls for webinars, business launches and AGMs at the moment. As a result, we have received lots of requests from clients looking for help on how to look their best on an online call. This is why we have put together this useful guide with a few minor details that you might not know about.
Read on to get our top tips for making yourself look great on your next video call.
Example from our edit for IAB UK Podcast Upfronts with Rak Patel, Head of Sales UK & PAN-EMEA for Spotify.
Audio is just as important as the visuals
We often argue that audio is more important than visuals. That’s why we take great care to capture the best audio possible whenever we film anything. The audience needs to hear the message being told. You are somewhat limited on Zoom calls in terms of the quality of the audio because it is compressed however some small tweaks will make a big difference.
Over the last few years, we have experienced everything from hearing the sounds of cups of tea being made in the background (noisy kettle!) to the sound of wind howling. Here are a few tips to fix this. Firstly, take control of your environment. Make sure you are somewhere quiet and let people in your house know that you are going on a Zoom call, so that they don’t interrupt and can be considerate as they go about their day.
After that, think about how your voice is getting to your mic. On some video projects, we can have very limited options in terms of microphones. However, that doesn’t mean that your audio needs to be poor. Simply getting closer to the in-built mic on your laptop drastically improves your audio by reducing echo.
Alternatively, you could use your Smartphone or an iPad for your call as these have better microphones and cameras than some laptops, so they often sound clearer.
Another great and very easy way to improve your audio is to use headphones with a built-in mic (such as Apple headphones). Finally, if you have access to an Apple laptop, try to borrow one for the call because they have really high-quality microphones.
2. Light it up!
Great filming is all about great lighting. Flooding your face with light makes a huge difference. One of the easiest ways to do that is to position your laptop with the window behind it. That way the natural sunlight will fall on to your face through the window creating the perfect natural lighting. Overhead lighting, such as from a ceiling light, is often not the most flattering option. We recommend, creating your own lighting by putting desk lamps behind your laptop or home computer, so that the light shines on to your face. Look at the difference adjusting your lighting makes.
3. Avoid low angles
Low angles are unflattering. Seriously, no one wants to look like they have ten double chins. To avoid giving yourself - or your colleagues - a view straight up your nose, position your camera to look at your face straight-on or slightly above it (use a stack of books to do this) to make sure you look your best.
4. Think about your framing
Once you have sorted out the lighting and your angle, you need to position yourself correctly. Our top tip here is that your face needs to be the main focus on the screen. This means that you are only visible from your shoulders up. It will help the person you are speaking with to concentrate on your conversation. It will also make the call feel more personal and look more professional. Our example below shows you what you should aim to recreate on your camera.
Our final top tip on framing is to never conduct a Zoom call with your laptop on your knees. Without realising you might be making minor movements, which will jeopardise the quality of your video and regardless of the purpose of your call, this is very distracting for people.
5. De-clutter your background
It is very off-putting, as well as unprofessional, to display a huge pile of washing-up or simply the debris of your day-to-day life strewn around your home. If possible, use a clean, quiet and tidy room for your video calls. However, if this is not possible (lots of us are home-schooling after all) then we recommend having a quick tidy up before your call. Worst case scenario where there’s nothing you can do to improve your background, you can always choose a fake background and set your meeting in the Caribbean, or even outer space.
We hope you find our top tips useful. In this increasingly digital age, a lot of our filming events are moving online. This was happening even before Covid-19 came along, and since then the need for great online content has only intensified. We are meeting this demand by continually coming up with new and creative ways to work with companies to produce engaging and fresh video content.
Filming has been deemed as an essential service, so we are still rolling but in a Covid-secure, socially distant compliant manner in order to protect our staff and our clients.
Check out our latest Instagram post to see what we are working on this week.
Get in touch with Nomadic Creatives to book us for your next event.