5 tips to boost your confidence for your first Instagram Live!

I have been sharing my STEM journey and all things science on Instagram for around 4 years or so now. I’ve made videos, I talk on stories and I’ve shared hundreds of posts, but I have never done an Instagram Live!

That was until a week ago!

I was invited to be interviewed live on the STEMettes channel and I finally pushed myself outside of my comfort zone and just did it.

It was my first one so it was far from perfect. So I thought it would be best to watch it back a few times and work out how to improve for next time and share a few of my tips that helped give me and can help give you a confidence boost before your first or next IG Live!

Look at the camera

I’ve watched my first live back many times now and the first thing that bugs me is that I barely look at the camera. It’s an awkward thing to do to look at that tiny circle at the top of your phone but training yourself to do that is going to help those watching engage with you the person more. I’m very conscious that I do that. I even do it in real life. But it is something I am working on and continue to get better at. So, make a conscious effort to look in the direction of the camera.

Don’t talk over each other

This one can be a little tricky sometimes, and something that I think didn’t really happen in my first attempt, but it is good practice as an interviewer or an interviewee to give that pause after someone has finished speaking before you start to speak too. Your audience are not going to be able to follow along if you are always talking over each other. It is very easy for your Instagram audience to switch off so don’t make it hard to listen to.

Be prepared

Or as prepared as you can be for a live. Live by nature is off the cuff, but you can still be prepared. Don’t rely on people to turn up and ask questions, have some prepared in advance. Have a think about your answers to those questions before hand. Know how your live is going to pan out even before you start. Having that plan is going to help you to relax and be more confident as you hit that button to go live.

Practice, practice, practice!

You want people to see you and not you doing ‘that Instagram live voice’ or anything. So use the prep that you have done and record a few video clips on your phone and review the things you are doing. Not having to act like a presenter or anything is going to make you more relaxed and more confident. Does that sound like me? Are those over-exaggerated hand gestures something I would normally do? Get used to how you sound on video. All these things will help you become more confident on your first live.

Just do it!

I was so scared of being live. I was worried about not knowing the right answers. I was worried about looking a fool, and not knowing how to go live and leave a live. I was scared that no-one would turn up. I didn’t think I had anything good to share live. I live to be prepared and have thought everything through but I couldn’t do that on a live. BUT… I am so glad that I had the opportunity to do my first live with the STEMettes, and I am so glad that I have done it. I’ve already done one now so any future ones I know more of what to expect. I still don’t think I will be going live from Soph talks science just yet – I still don’t think I have any value to share in that way just yet – but I already have some more lives lined up and I am not as anxious or terrified this time. Plus it is another chance for me to improve on my skills. So, just do it! You will enjoy it! What is the worst that could happen?

So, those are just 5 quick tips that can help you to become more confident on IG live. I am clearly not a pro at live videos – yet! – but these are tips that helped me as a shy, introvert who loves to be prepared be confident on my first live. I’d love to hear from you too…

Have you done a live video before? What top tips would you share? What helped you?

Let me know in the comments below.

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