It’s undeniably exciting when you start a Cam Chat session with someone new. The excitement and anticipation as you connect is really something. However, it can be a bit of a let down if what you see on your screen doesn’t match the image in your head.
As in the rest of life, first impressions are important. If you’ve taken the plunge to video chat with someone, it’s worth a little effort to make sure you pop when on screen. Follow these simple tips, and you’ll always make a great first impression when starting cam chat sessions. The rest is up to you.
It’s worth doing a quick test with a close friend or family member to check both sound and video quality. Tell them you have a Skype job interview coming up, and you want to look your best. A laggy connection, grainy video or muffled audio will lower initial impact, so make sure your setup is working.
Ensure you have several light sources and that they are all indirect to avoid dark shadows or a shiny-face effect. If you are not going to be showing your face, make sure that the part you want to be seen looks good under the light sources you have. If you are chatting in the daytime, natural light works well. Face a window and have your camera pointing into the space where you are video chatting.
If your face is shown prominently, look into the webcam - and not at the screen. It’s easy to be distracted by the personal video preview (the little box that shows how the other person sees you), but this can lead to unflattering postures on camera and a lack of eye contact with the other caller. Build a connection by looking into that little black lens.
Yeah, it’s cool to express your own style, but keep in mind that bold patterns can look messy on the viewer's screen. If you’re planning to wear jewelry, make sure they don’t reflect light in a way that distracts the viewer or washes out the image. Less is more. If you do decide to wear a pattern, sit in front of a solid color that doesn't clash with your clothes. The best backgrounds are dark, solid colors, with no patterns.
Don’t be a slouch! Present yourself in a way that subtly accentuates your best features. Good posture is a simple yet great way to show off your best look in cam chat sessions. Keep in mind you want to be making a good impression at all times, but also don’t overdo it -- subtlety is much better than being over the top. A good posture is not necessarily a stiff one.
We’ve all seen those unflattering pictures online taken from under someone’s chin. Looking down at the camera often makes your face seem wider, and can give you an extra chin. A good tip is to place the camera on a surface that's directly in line with your forehead. If you're on a laptop with a built-in camera, don't tilt the screen up, but place it on a higher surface and tip it down towards you. This can be difficult if you're typing messages with that laptop, so your best bet is to get an external camera so you can position it in the most flattering way possible.
Whether it’s makeup, the way you talk, or the gestures you make, try not to go over the top. A cam chat with a natural feel comes across as more genuine. Of course you want to have some fun, but don’t turn your chat session into a clown’s performance. This advice is for casual cam chatting and making a good impression. Performers, on the other hand, might wish to be more exaggerated.
And there you have it: Time to have some fun. Follow these tips, visit one of our cam chat rooms, and make a big splash!