If you’re used to lighting up a room with your charisma and getting people’s attention, you might have noticed the playing field has changed.  Your energy, the way you stand, your choice in clothes, and what you say are all construed differently now that we’re in Zoom mode. 

So, how do you boost your charisma to charm your audience when you can’t be in person?

7 Marketing Tips to Boost Your E-Charisma 

  1. Up your stage presence.  If you’re not able to meet in person, showcase your personality on screen. Position yourself so that your face takes up at least one-third of the screen and allow for enough headroom. Add a ring light or desk lamp in front of you to avoid shadows. Your audience can’t see you if you’re in the dark.
  2. Light up the room with your smile. It’s hard to gauge people’s mood on video, especially with multiple participants on a call. To show you’re engaged and not zoning out, light up the room with a warm smile and nod more often to show that you’re listening – one of the key characteristics of a charismatic leader. Being more animated helps too, using positive body language from the chest up.  
  3. Make intentional eye contact. Instead of wondering who to look at when you speak, practice looking at the camera. Some laptops have a camera at the bottom, others are at the top of the screen. I use a Logitech HD 1080 webcam that sits on top of my computer. It has a built-in microphone which also has excellent sound quality for recording webinars and other meetings. 
  4. Master the art of your voice. Your voice isn’t perceived the same way in person as it is online, so it’s important to compensate for the loss of speed, rhythm and nuances. To come across clear, confident and charismatic, articulate your message and take your time talking. Pause more often giving others an opportunity to speak. As with any public speaking, vary your pitch, tone and speech patterns.
  5. Create a cheat sheet. Have a ton of information you have to present? Keep a handy cheat sheet or outline nearby that you can refer to. Not a novel, just a few keywords or points you don’t want to forget. Write your list and scan it a couple of times before your meeting to improve recall and make your points more naturally. You want to connect with your audience in ways they understand. 
  6. Share the spotlight. In person, you’re able to use hand gestures to cue others who want to speak. That always isn’t possible on video. Use the rule of three of summarizing someone else’s points, speak for short periods of time, pausing often, or ask a question to a particular person, then wait for their response. 
  7. Be sensitive to time. Don’t let any one person hog the virtual stage. It’s not just boring, it’s rude, and as a moderator (of sorts) your job is to make sure the meeting is successful. Depending on the size of the group, give everyone an opportunity to speak, including those hiding in the background. To keep time, I use a small travel clock. Mobile phones and stopwatches are distracting.

A while back, I wrote an article about charisma, working a room and exuding confidence. It still holds true to build likeability and leadership, only now, like all else, you need to adapt to fit the times. 

Here’s another tip that will help you boost your E-charisma

Create videos. It’s here where many of your communication skills come together; 

  • eye contact and speaking to your audience
  • commanding a room with stage presence
  • understanding and using the nuances of face and body language effectively
  • storytelling in sound bites
  • the art of voice control
  • and of course, clear and concise messaging

I hope these six marketing tips help you become a more powerful speaker on video. The beauty is, they work in-person too. 

PS: Special thanks to Ray A. Smith, from the Wall Street Journal. His article about online charisma inspired my writing.

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