Kerry Barrett Quotable Podcast


Be a Pro On-Screen with Emmy Winner Kerry Barrett


Join us in this episode as we learn from one of the best when it comes to on-camera success. Have you ever wished you could show up on camera more for your business, but you just feel uncomfortable, don’t like it how it looks, or simply don’t know where to really start? Kerry Barrett’s two-decade Emmy Award-winning career as a television news anchor and host in the apex market of New York City on NBC, ABC, Fox, and Weather Channel, provided her with tons of experience on screen, and the unique ability to translate that into helping others find their success on camera too. She is now the founder of Kerry Barrett Inc., a coaching business where she teaches solopreneurs, entrepreneurs, corporations, business executives, and teams, including top Fortune 100 companies who are struggling to grow on social media to create engaging content that attracts followers, leads, & revenue. Tune into this episode to unlock all of Kerry’s best coaching secrets and her dos and don’ts of maintaining a good on-camera presence.

In this episode, we will:
  • Unlock the secrets to the ‘relatability index’. Identify the key qualities that make someone relatable and how they contribute to leadership success.
  • Overcome on-camera visibility hurdles.
  • Delve into the importance of creating impactful business videos to become your own media outlet. 
  • Master the art of an authentic on-camera presence, learning how to remain cool, confident, and compelling all while emanating good energy on-camera. 
  • Discuss the power of edutainment: turning a presentation into a conversation by meshing important content with entertaining aspects of your authentic personality.

The resources mentioned in this episode are:
  • Check out the free resources, checklists, and guides available on Kerry’s website to kickstart your video and on-camera communication journey.
  • Subscribe to Kerry Barrett’s YouTube channel for valuable tips and tricks on improving on-camera presence and communication skills.
  • Listen to Kerry’s podcast, The Kerry Barrett Show for lots more tips and tricks.
  • Find Kerry on Instagram @kerrbarrett
  • Find Kerry on LinkedIn @kerrybarrett
  • Join the Visibility Bootcamp Membership for six months for $388 per month. This program provides accountability, live calls, and guidance on executing your visibility plan. Limited spots! Sign-up here.

The key moments in this episode are:

00:00:00 – Introduction to Quotable Podcast

00:03:04 – Starting a Business Journey

00:08:50 – Navigating Live Video Challenges

00:11:54 – Transition to Business Coaching

00:13:20 – Importance of Compelling Delivery

00:14:07 – Taking the Leap into Entrepreneurship

00:15:16 – Impact of Storytelling in Business

00:19:32 – Importance of Video in Modern Workforce

00:21:41 – The Essence of Authenticity and Relatability

00:22:57 – Common Mistakes in On-Camera Communication

00:28:25 – The Importance of Energy in Video Content

00:29:47 – Avoiding Overloading Content with Statistics

00:32:23 – The Challenge of Solo Video Recording

00:35:33 – Just Get Started

00:38:20 – Dealing with Trolls and Critics

Timestamped summary of this episode:

00:00:00 – Introduction to Quotable Podcast
Alessandra Pollina introduces the Quotable podcast, and discusses the focus on female entrepreneurs and their journeys in building successful businesses while living life to the fullest.

00:03:04 – Starting a Business Journey
Kerry Barrett shares her transition from a 20-year career in broadcast news to starting her own business as an on-camera coach. She discusses the challenges, learning curves, and the iterative process of finding her ideal audience.

00:08:50 – Navigating Live Video Challenges
Kerry Barrett highlights the importance of live video experience and its correlation to confidence, problem-solving skills, and the ability to navigate through challenges in real-time. She emphasizes the impact of live video experience on recorded content creation.

00:11:54 – Transition to Business Coaching
Kerry Barrett shares her organic transition to business coaching after networking and receiving advice from a PR professional. She discusses the shift in the use of video for sales, recruiting, virtual events, and the growing importance of effective on-camera delivery.

00:13:20 – Importance of Compelling Delivery
Kerry Barrett emphasizes the significance of compelling on-camera delivery in engaging an audience and standing out in virtual town halls and social media posts. She highlights the increased awareness of the importance of delivering engaging content due to the pandemic’s impact.

00:14:07 – Taking the Leap into Entrepreneurship
Kerry Barrett recounts the spontaneous decision to start her own business, highlighting the minimal thought and preparation that initially went into the venture.

00:15:16 – Impact of Storytelling in Business
Kerry discusses the significant impact of storytelling and building confidence in individuals through her work, emphasizing the transformative nature of effective communication.

00:19:32 – Importance of Video in Modern Workforce
The conversation delves into the evolving expectations of the younger workforce and the necessity for companies to adapt to video communication for engagement, recruitment, and retention.

00:21:41 – The Essence of Authenticity and Relatability
The discussion unpacks the true meaning of authenticity, emphasizing the importance of creating connection and relatability through genuine, engaging, and educational content.

00:22:57 – Common Mistakes in On-Camera Communication
Kerry highlights the pitfalls of inadequate eye contact and low energy in on-camera communication, offering practical solutions and a 30-day challenge to enhance presence and engagement.

00:28:25 – The Importance of Energy in Video Content
Kerry emphasizes the need to bring high energy when creating video content. Viewers engage more when the presenter is energetic, and it helps to keep their attention.

00:29:47 – Avoiding Overloading Content with Statistics
Kerry advises against overwhelming viewers with too many statistics on video content. She suggests using analogies to explain complex information and providing additional material like worksheets and PDFs for in-depth understanding.

00:32:23 – The Challenge of Solo Video Recording
Kerry discusses the difficulty of maintaining energy and engagement when recording solo videos. She shares her experience from the news industry and offers tips for enhancing performance in front of the camera.

00:35:33 – Just Get Started
Kerry emphasizes the importance of taking action and getting started with creating video content. She highlights the need for practice and experience to develop on-camera communication skills.

00:38:20 – Dealing with Trolls and Critics
Kerry provides insights on handling criticism and negative feedback, particularly from online trolls. She encourages creators not to let such opinions hold them back and to maintain confidence in their work.
We’d love to hear from you. Comment on this week’s episode’s Instagram post with how this has inspired you. If you have any other tips or ideas leave a comment under the post for this episode on our Instagram page @quotablemediaco or shoot me a DM. You can also connect with us at our Quotable Magazine Instagram account @quotablemagazine For any show ideas, to submit a guest to the podcast, or if you have any questions, please visit Did you love this week’s episode? Leave us a review!


00:00:35 – Alessandra Pollina
I’m so excited to be here with Kerry Barrett of Kerry Barrett, Inc. She’s an Emmy winning on camera coach, and I’m so excited about the things we’re going to get to talk about today. Thanks so much for coming on, Barrett.
00:00:48 – Kerry Barrett
Oh, my goodness. My pleasure. We’re going to have a lot of fun. There’s a lot to talk about. We’re all our own media hubs these days.
00:00:55 – Alessandra Pollina
Yes. And for people who listen to this podcast, that’s a lot of what I talk about, too. I’m on the PR side, so I’m always talking to people about how can you be putting your best foot forward and making sure that when you’re doing some of this stuff yourself on behalf of your business, it’s going to work as well as it possibly can. I want to start with kind of hearing about what your background is, how you actually started doing this, how you’ve turned it into a business. Let’s start there and then. I do want to dive into all the things we’re probably doing wrong on camera, but let’s start with your journey.
00:01:28 – Kerry Barrett
Yeah. Well, I appreciate that. Thanks again for the opportunity to be here. I started my business as of this recording about four years ago. My background prior to that was in broadcast news. I was an anchor, a reporter producer for a little while, for 20 years. That’s where I got my Emmy. There’s a couple of them, but for my on air work. And I was in that business for two decades, wrapped up at NBC in New York City, and left without much of a Runway, meaning I hadn’t really given a lot of thought to what would come after. I thought it might be PR. Right. You know, there’s a lot of former newsies who move into that space. But what I ultimately decided to do was something I never planned on doing for as long as I lived, which was starting a business. I realized in the course of networking and figuring out what was coming next, that there was this skill set that I had sort of developed and created, or curated maybe is the right word, while I was in broadcast. And sure, some of it’s video production and we do that sort of stuff as well, but really the biggest element is media training is what it is. In a nutshell, it’s communicating effectively on video and camera. Now, post pandemic, the meaning of that has entirely expanded. But to get back to when I was starting, which was really right before the pandemic, I had no idea, honestly, what this business was going to be. And I had no idea how little I knew about business, which in hindsight was I’m glad, because I’d never read a business book because I was not interested. I never reported on business outside of know, here’s the opening bell, or closing, whatever. And I never took a business class. I’d go to a networking meeting and someone would ask me, I thought I was going to do just public speaking, coaching. Someone would ask me how I was going to scale, and I would literally be like, stand by Google. What does scale mean? I can emphasize how little I knew. There’s no possible way to overstate how dumb I was when it came to business stuff.
00:03:42 – Alessandra Pollina
We call it naive, the naivety that makes you take the leap. Oh, gosh.
00:03:46 – Kerry Barrett
Yeah. And so it’s been a pretty steep climb over the past, whatever it is now, three and a half or so years, and it’s taken a lot of iterations. I’ve changed marketing strategies. I have finally found where I think my ideal audience is. Although I do work with all sorts of different people and business owners, what I offer is based on their budget and their resources. And I have a different way of delivering impactful training depending on what your needs are. But I’m finally getting it, I think, sort of figured out. I take two steps forward and every now and then I get sucker punch and it throws me back three. But I have been steadily moving in the right direction now for a while, which is a really nice feeling.
00:04:32 – Alessandra Pollina
Yeah, that’s all we can ask for, right? I think there’s always the setbacks. That’s what it is, right? I mean, I feel like that’s when people are like, what makes someone successful? It’s really just that you don’t stop at the times that you feel like you’re taking a step back. You keep going because that’s all it is, 100%.
00:04:51 – Kerry Barrett
It’s like grit and perseverance, recognizing when what you’re doing is in fact the wrong thing. And maybe quitting trying to make it work in that particular way, but not giving up on the overall dream. And I think my grit and perseverance was developed in large part during my tenure in the news industry because that’s a tough industry to play in, especially for as long as I did. So you take a lot of kicks from both reviewers and your bosses.
00:05:19 – Alessandra Pollina
Oh, my God.
00:05:19 – Kerry Barrett
00:05:20 – Alessandra Pollina
I personally have a lot of questions just around that part of it, but that’s not necessarily where we’re going to focus today. But maybe there’s some way I can kind of relate some of that. I’m just curious. I always feel like on that other side of the news, seems like things move so fast. Is there any part of just kind of like, being in the newsroom and having to kind of roll with things as quickly as they’re coming and make sure you’re doing it right? To me, it seems so stressful, because what if you say the wrong thing when you’re reporting the actual news that terrifying and you don’t tend to prep much in it. Sometimes it’s just like, hey, read it as it comes.
00:06:00 – Kerry Barrett
Well, and sometimes you’re not even reading it. When you’re in breaking news, there’s no reading. It’s all like, hey, in your earpiece and you’re on tv as this is happening and you’re talking about something or you’re interviewing somebody else live, real time, and the producer is saying in your ear after this guest, we have this guest. This is the guest name, and this is his or her title. And when you’re done with this guy, you’ve got, whatever, two more minutes, toss. And you’re doing all of these things, and the viewer doesn’t know that this is going on. But the idea of not having any mistakes is, I mean, I’ve never had, I don’t think anybody’s ever had a perfect show. Six years of live tv, every day for 20 years, you’re bound to say some really dumb stuff. And I sure as heck did. What I think is that, and this applies to business owners as well. Unless you are egregiously and intentionally cruel or offensive. And I don’t mean like, the sort of cancel culture that we’re in right now, there is very little that you can’t fix. So you say the wrong address of a home because you’re sort of in the fog of breaking news. Well, then you go back and you say, no, we got some misinformation. I apologize. Reports were coming in from blah blah, blah, blah blah, and instead it’s actually taking place one block down. So be aware that these are the roads that are whatever it is. You don’t have to stumble all over yourself to apologize, but just make the correction and move on. And I think the longest I was ever on tv live was probably 14 hours straight. And that’s when Hurricane Sandy hit. I was in Philadelphia at the time, and things are going to happen. The show must go on. There is no stopping. So you dig yourself out of whatever hole you’re in because the live shot went down or the prompter went down, or you have literally three words of information and no pictures, and you have to stretch for half an hour till the reporter gets to the scene. I mean, you just have to figure it out. That’s why I always say, like, live video, if I have a client who wants to get really good on video really fast, we’re going to go over some of the basic skills and then we’re going to go on a live stream together because you have to figure it out real time. And once you realize that you can navigate through whatever is coming your way, whatever challenge has plopped itself in front of you and you’ve got to figure out how to deal with. Once you figure that out, it’s game changing because you know you can handle it and you know how to roll with the mistakes and you know how to get back on track. And it makes the recorded stuff easier as well because you don’t overthink it any longer. You trust your skills and your abilities enough to just go with it. And so instead of 15 takes, it takes you one or two. It is a game changer, both in confidence for life and in business. At least it was for me.
00:08:59 – Alessandra Pollina
Yeah. And that’s actually a great segue or a way to kind of go back to, like, I’m so curious. Obviously, you have that experience that you can now share with people because it is something a lot of us need or at least can use a lot in our business and don’t have that experience. How did you actually start being like, oh, this is actually something I could teach people or coach people through, or where did the first client come from? Since you said you had no idea of starting a business, how did that actually happen?
00:09:30 – Kerry Barrett
Well, I had zero strategy, so let me be very clear about that, which is probably already plenty clear. But just to underscore it, no idea what I was doing. The one thing I did know how to do was get on camera and talk. And so I started a LinkedIn account and I would just put a video up each day nothing fancy. I’d record whatever it was anywhere from 30. Now, this is a while ago, so TikTok style videos hadn’t really occurred on LinkedIn yet. So it was like your standard horizontal 30 to, I don’t know, 120 seconds, two minutes, and I would just talk. It might be a tip or a trick. It might be a story. From my news experience, it might be I’m speaking at this event. Some of them were promotional, which didn’t work well on LinkedIn, but I knew how to do that, so that’s what I did, and that’s where things started to trickle in. A small client who was a solopreneur, a solo practitioner, rather, of his law firm. He owned a law firm. He wanted to create a YouTube series guiding other new attorneys about how to grow their own solo practice. But he was sort of stiff on camera and not very conversational, even though in real life he’s quite a pleasure to be around. And so we had to take what he had cultivated as a lawyer in the courtroom and turn it into a delivery that’s appropriate for education and creating connection, which is quite different. You’re not yelling at the people or trying to fight the people who are watching you. You have to have a more approachable, likable disposition. And that’s often the challenge with business video and business executives is they are used to delivering very sort of professional. And you can read that as buttoned up and sometimes, unfortunately, pretty boring, virtual white papers, as I like to call them. It’s not what video is good for. It’s not how you should deliver on a town hall or in a client pitch or in a media opportunity on broadcast or cable news. And it’s sort of unlearning some of those old bad habits. But eventually, to get back to your question, what I did was, as I was networking, I met a woman who did pr and communications for a law firm in New York City. And I was talking to her about going back into the corporate world on the pr side. And she’s like, you’re nuts. You have all these skills that so many people need to learn, and you can go in and you can fix their problems, and then you can leave and you don’t have to deal with all of the other BS, if you will. Now, this was before the pandemic. So after the pandemics started, and it was no longer just about delivering on CNBC or Fox Business or whatever it was, it was about having video sales and making, creating video sales calls and using video for recruiting and using video for global town halls and client pitches and virtual events. That has opened up a whole new world. And I think it’s changed the way, too, that executives and business owners look at video, which is no longer a nice to have, it’s a need to have. But if you can create video, you essentially become your own media outlet, but without the gatekeepers. So you have an opportunity to increase your impact, close more sales, curate a more engaged workforce, a greater efficacy as a leader. There’s so many different ways that you can use this. And the pandemic has really exploded people’s knowledge of why delivering on camera is important. It’s not just about audio and lighting, although those things are important. It’s certainly about messaging as well. But there’s so much stuff out there that if you can’t keep people engaged because your delivery is compelling and interesting, you’ve lost them. So you could create 100 different virtual town halls or social media posts, but if they don’t stand out, it’s a waste of your time.
00:13:46 – Alessandra Pollina
Yeah, for sure. And people totally get that now. It probably was really the best time starting a business, and I think that because people started being on camera all the time, or even just the rise of TikTok and stuff, it’s like you see people on camera all the time, and sometimes you think it should be easier than it is, but you try to do it, you’re like, wait a minute. Oh, now I need to do something about that. Got to figure it out. I love the story where it’s like, somebody told me I needed to start doing business.
00:14:15 – Kerry Barrett
Well, it’s so funny. We were having coffee in midtown Manhattan, and that’s literally what she said to me. Like, you’re nuts. And I was like, okay, I think I am. I went home to my husband. I’m like, I’m going to start a business. That’s literally how much thought that went into it. I’m like, let’s tap into some of the family savings. I need a little seed money. And I was like, I’ll pay you back in four months when the money starts coming in. Just ridiculous things. I can’t believe people aren’t showing up in my front door with suitcases full of cash. But, yeah, I love it. I still love it. I feel like I’ve had a much greater impact almost doing what I’m doing now than I did while I was working in the news industry and the opportunity for the things that I still love doing, storytelling and bringing people out of their shell and letting them see what’s possible and how this skill improves not just their business, but their own personal confidence as well. It’s life changing. It was, for me, anyway, game changing in so many different ways.
00:15:22 – Alessandra Pollina
Yeah. And now you get to do it with a lot more flexibility, probably from the comfort of your own home or wherever you want to be. I feel like that’s a good kind of place to kind of go into what you were just saying, like, in terms of what people get from it. I know that, first of all, you talk about the relatability index. Can we talk about that for a second? I guess, and just dive into what people should. Like some tips for being on camera, maybe what we’re doing wrong if we haven’t thought about it too much.
00:15:47 – Kerry Barrett
Absolutely. So the relatability index is just to give listeners rather a quick idea of what it is, was a study that I commissioned a couple of years ago that looked into why relatability? Well, first of all, is relatability important in leadership? Yes, it is. And what are the characteristics? Why? And then what are the characteristics that make somebody relatable? Empathy, vulnerability, honesty, pleasure, pain. Those are things that you might not automatically associate with being relatable, but it has more to do with sharing them. And then likability. Likability is an obvious one, I would say we always want to be respected, but likability is a big part of that as well. If your team wants to run in the opposite direction when they see you, then you’re not going to have much success with them. It doesn’t mean that you have to have dinner together every night in one of your homes, but it does mean that if people like you and enjoy being around you, they’re much more likely to spend time with you. They’re much more likely to come to you when they have questions. They’re much more likely to trust you to be honest with them, even if it’s in a very sort of gentle and positive way for critique and feedback. So those are the six characteristics. And when it comes to displaying them in your communications, one of the places that executives, anyway, especially high level executives, get stuck is that they oftentimes, and it’s not necessarily articulated this way, at least explicitly, but they’re stuck in certain way of doing things and a certain way of communicating that we’ve always adhered to. And there are some industries that are much more stoic. I find that this is much more applicable in finance, for example, insurance, sometimes healthcare as well. And they get tied into a certain way of showing up on camera, which is, I’m giving a presentation, really, you’re talking, you’re having a conversation, and it’s switching that mindset first. This is not a presentation, it’s a conversation. You are talking, and that’s how you start building relatability through the lens, which is especially important. You’re going to have nowadays team members who you might never see in person. They were hired with a virtual interview. They might not even work on the same continent that you’re headquartered in, and you have to somehow bring them into the fold. You have to continue to create an engaged workforce, because especially the younger generation, maybe millennials, but certainly Gen Z, they want the flexibility that remote work provides, and there’s enough opportunity out there for them that they’re not going to go to a place that requires them to be in the office five days a week. So if companies don’t adjust their expectations, they’re going to find in fairly short order that they’re going to be out of a skilled, reliable workforce that has institutional knowledge, because they’ve been there for a while, and that’s part of what they need to create as well. So acknowledging that your younger workforce has different expectations that are not going to change, and you’re going to have to work with them and understand how they consume information and what they find most helpful, all of that points back to video, whether it’s live, whether it’s recorded, whether it’s sales and marketing, video, social media opportunities, recruiting, et cetera. The list goes on.
00:19:34 – Alessandra Pollina
Yeah, I think that also when you talk about just like, relatability, I feel like what that brings up for me, too, is how I feel like people overuse the term authenticity now. And I feel like it’s sort of like going much deeper into what people kind of mean when they say, you have to be authentic when you’re talking to people or portraying yourself or being on camera and things like that, this actually makes a lot more sense to me, because that’s what it really is. That’s what people are really trying for when they say that, I think is that that’s what they think is going to help them relate to others.
00:20:06 – Kerry Barrett
Yeah, 100%. And I agree with you. Oh, my gosh. Authenticity is like, it’s been a buzzword now along with pivot for the last four or five years, and it has diluted in its meaning, and it serves sort of as a catch all phrase or word for any number of things. But at the end of the day, it’s about creating connection. And sometimes people think authenticity means I’m like crazy in real life, and I do all this crazy stuff. That’s not what it means. What it means is having a conversation and not a presentation. It’s not unidirectional, right. Even if it is kind of. And making it seem spontaneous, it doesn’t mean rattling on and going off on a tangent. You still have sort of talking points and messaging and things that you need to relay to your team or the audience or whatever, but it’s doing it in a way that makes you memorable, makes the conversation engaging and interesting. And edutainment is a word that’s also used in terms of creating video and video content, really, it just means that you’re taking elements of yourself, humor, personality, things that are entertaining, and you’re meshing them with education. And so you’re creating content that’s important and useful, but you’re also delivering it. This is the tainment part, the entertainment part, in a way that your audience is going to stick around and listen to, and that’s authenticity, I. E. Relatability as well.
00:21:41 – Alessandra Pollina
Yeah. I mean, it’s so important just to get people to watch it. There’s just so much content out there. People are seeing stuff all the time. So half the battle is getting someone to actually want to watch your whole thing.
00:21:50 – Kerry Barrett
And that’s scary too. And I don’t mean to cut you off, but I want to underscore something you just said that’s so important. And I sometimes still feel this myself. I’ll put a post out there that maybe doesn’t land the way that I hoped it would, or it doesn’t get as much engagement as I would have liked it to, or maybe the post before did. And it’s easy to feel like you’re sort of screaming into the void and no one’s listening, and that’s. I’m hosting a live stream. Oh, look at two people showed up. That sort of stuff. But don’t let that discourage you. I sort of liken that to being a new reporter in a small market. You make your mistakes in front of a smaller audience and then you figure them out, and that’s how you grow your audience into a larger one. Be happy that not a lot of people show up and watch your first video content because that’s where you’re cutting your teeth.
00:22:42 – Alessandra Pollina
Yeah, that’s a great point. You’ve been saying so many useful and helpful kind of things and tips of things to keep in mind, but do you think it’s easier to frame things as like, here’s what not to do on camera or is it better to be like, here are the top three things you should make sure you’re doing.
00:22:57 – Kerry Barrett
We do have a negativity bias, which means we like to hear the mistakes that we’re making so that we don’t look like fools.
00:23:03 – Alessandra Pollina
I could be not the best person, but as long as I’m not doing the worst thing.
00:23:08 – Kerry Barrett
Exactly. So I would say there’s three big mistakes that I see people make on the regular, and I will tell you.
00:23:16 – Alessandra Pollina
How to fix them.
00:23:17 – Kerry Barrett
The first one is very easy. It is eye contact. And I know it sounds super basic and it’s not as important when you’re on a Zoom call with like five people that you know. But if you’re doing a live stream or you are on a global town hall because you have employees all over the place, or it’s a video podcast or whatever, recognize that your audience isn’t the person staring back at you on the monitor. The audience is the end user of this content, which they’re going to be viewing, who knows? On LinkedIn or YouTube or whatever. That is the audience that you need to be looking at. And you look at that audience by looking into the lens. I know it’s distracting, and I know it’s hard to remember. And you don’t have to stare at them and have a staring contest. You can break gaze every now and then. But my point is, if they’re watching you and you are constantly looking from their perspective, down or away, and you’re not meeting them where their gaze is, it’s the same thing in person conversation. We begin to wonder, why is this person so shifty? They won’t look me in the eye. That’s weird. Are they scared? Are they awkward? Are they lying? Are they timid? None of those things are good selling points. So remember that the end user of whatever video content you’re creating, they are watching you through the lens of your phone, webcam, whatever it is, you need to be looking there. The second big mistake that people make is not having enough energy. And it’s for a couple of reasons. Number one, people get scared, whether it’s, again, live or recorded. And it goes back to the same fear. It ties into the same fear that we have of public speaking. We see the audience as a predator, and so we shrink. Our vocal variety gets smaller and reduced. We sound more monotone. We don’t use body language or facial expressions. And that’s one element. The other two are the logistics of talking on a camera. So, for example, recognizing that the hardware of the lens and the microphone and wherever it is that you’re recording it, those will reduce the quality of the video, recognizing that the Internet connection plays a role in that very often as well. The lack of context. If you’re watching a video, you only see what’s in that little square. You don’t know what’s going on as the presenter, quote, unquote. You can’t see what your audience is doing either, right? There’s no context there. Are they listening to me? Are they paying attention? Are they twiddling their thumbs? Are they scrolling on Instagram or TikTok? It’s very easy to get in your head with that. And so all of that creates this sort of, like, we shrink. We’re also no longer a 3d person. We’re 2d on a screen. And so what I suggest is this sort of like 30 day challenge and you’re creating video just for yourself. Open up your phone. Talk into, not the screen, talk into the back camera. Right? What you would consider the back of your phone so you can’t get distracted by your face and talk for 30 seconds. It doesn’t have to be about business or work. It could be about anything. And really amp up your energy and then go back and look and first look at your energy and then pick one other thing that you want to work on. Work on that one thing each day for 30 seconds, and when you feel like you have your arms around it, then move on to the next thing. When it comes to the energy components, think about it like this. If you’re at a noisy restaurant and you’re at a table of, let’s say, eight, there’s four on each side. Let’s create this mental picture. And you’re at one end of the table and you want to talk to someone who, on the other side, clear down on the other end, and it’s loud, what do you do? You probably project more. You’re using your body language, right? Vocals. You’re also leaning in. Maybe when something is exciting and you want to really get their attention, you are amplifying your facial expressions. You are using hand gestures. There’s three things I need to tell you. You may say, one, two, three, and hold up your fingers, one finger, two finger, three fingers. And you use all of those different components to communicate what it is that you want to communicate over the din of everything that’s going on around you. Speaking on camera is the exact same concept. You want to sort of take what you would do in that situation and replicate it on camera. For most people, it’s about a 25% increase in energy. And I know that sounds very specific, but try it and then go back and look at whether you do seem in fact over the top, because it’s going to feel weird. Promise you that nine times out of ten you need to go a little bit further. So recognize that. And I think the other element that people do incorrectly on video, and this is not so much social, but usually more longer form content, if they are doing a town hall, livestream, a podcast, whatever, is that they get too into the wheeze, meaning they like to talk a lot of statistics and things that make people’s eyes glaze over on video. Video is not for statistics. You can highlight a few key elements if you want to, but anything more than that and people aren’t going to be able to follow it and their eyes are going to glaze over and then they are out. If you have something complicated to explain, use an analogy similar to the one that I just used about the table, right. So people can paint a visual picture for themselves in their minds and actually put themselves in that situation and think about what they would do. And then if there are real specifics that they do need to have. But video is not the right place to communicate them. Give them a worksheet or a PDF or a handout or something and give it to them before you create the video or after, and they can use that to dive deeper into the material. That’s not a good fit for a visual medium. Those are the three big mistakes people make on the regular.
00:29:47 – Alessandra Pollina
I love that. I think that that’s so good because that’s not like what I thought you were going to say. I hadn’t thought about it, but I feel like that’s not obvious. Those aren’t things that I would have been like, oh, yeah, totally does make sense, but it’s not like where I would have been like, oh, yeah, I would have thought that would have been one of the top three things. I think what you said, the energy piece does make sense, but I don’t think about that. And I’m relating it to. I don’t do as much on video, mostly because whenever I try, I like, hate it and I’m like, get too.
00:30:13 – Kerry Barrett
Distracted by it during the club and.
00:30:16 – Alessandra Pollina
I want to try. I actually keep saying I’m just recording the podcast, like, even when I do solo episodes and putting on YouTube, because people are saying that’s the best way to get it out there these days. I’m thinking even when I just record a podcast episode, when I do a solo episode, by myself. Sometimes I listen back to them and I’m like, oh, sounded like really low energy. But in doing it, it didn’t seem like it didn’t feel like that when I went to record it, because when you feel like you’re kind of talking to yourself, I guess it’s like if you’re talking to people, you do use a little more energy, and I think whether you’re on video or not. But keeping that in mind, even for my totally audio only episodes, I feel like will be so helpful.
00:30:56 – Kerry Barrett
It’s interesting. I picked up on my own issues with energy way back when I was in the news industry. Like, early on in my career, I thought I would be delivering a news story in a way that felt very energetic. I was super connected to it. It was an important story. I was really leaning into delivering it that way. And I’d go back and watch, and I would think, like, really? It didn’t come across the way that I thought it did. I looked sort of removed and maybe a little bit tired. And so that’s when I realized I really had to bump things up. And it doesn’t mean that you have to go down a gallon of coffee or whatever before you go on video. What it does mean is you just have to have a couple of skills in your back pocket that you can deploy when you’re tired. Recognize that you might not be aware that you are speaking more slowly or more quietly. And so throwing in an extra hand gesture or just creating a little bit of dynamic movement in the shot, like leaning in or whatever, those small things increase your energy to the viewer. It doesn’t mean that you have to go crazy. You just have to find the right spot. But you are 100% accurate. And I would say also to underscore the importance of what you said. When you’re recording by yourself, it’s very hard to have that energy. You’re looking into a lens. You’re talking to yourself, basically. I got very used to doing that because I did it for so long on the news, and I started to view the camera as a person, but I also had people around me that I could play off of, and so that helped. It helped create that exchange. When you’re speaking to a lens by yourself, it’s very easy to get into your head and start thinking about the things that you messed up. And then you sort of wonder if anybody’s listening, and then you sort of spiral into this direction. That’s not at all helpful for what you’re trying to do. People often think that they’re good on a stage, so in front of a live audience, so they’re going to be good talking on a camera by themselves. And the two things are not at all the same.
00:33:08 – Alessandra Pollina
That’s interesting. Yeah, I would probably kind of think that, too. Yeah, it’s just really so much of it is about the energy of who you’re talking to or imagining you’re talking to or not talking to. But I feel like that’s my main takeaway. I’m going to definitely try that challenge that you said. So if anybody here go for it is listening to this and wants to do that with me, we could do 30 days. And especially, I like your trick of turn it away from you so you’re not getting distracted by yourself and truly see what it looks like afterwards without playing around with it while you’re doing it. So doing that for sure. Any other tip, any other thing to keep in mind? I feel like you just gave us so much.
00:33:43 – Kerry Barrett
Well, my gosh, my pleasure. I guess I would just say that it really is just doing it. You cannot intellectualize your way into getting good on camera or building those skills. You could read all the on camera communication books that you want. I have some. You only get there by doing it. And so my suggestion would be, do not overthink it. Just start. You’ll start. And you can’t figure it out on your own. It might take you a little bit longer. Like when I was in the news industry, we had coaches and we had consultants, we had media trainers that taught us how to communicate well, and it still took a while. So you can figure it out on your own, but if you want to get good very quickly, have somebody help you with it, have somebody give you feedback, give you ideas for practice, et cetera, and then just start. Because if you don’t do, you’ll never actually learn how to execute or use any of the skills that you picked up as you were reading a book. And that’s where you find the challenges. Oh, this made sense when I read it, but I actually don’t know how to deploy it when I’m sitting in front of the lens. Once you build the skills, then the confidence comes. And then once the confidence comes, you can sort of put the very intentional skills that you’ve created. You can run them on autopilot. You now know how to do the thing, and then you can start exploring the space of being authentic or relatable, which means using the skills to then amplify who you are as a person and how you connect with your audience. And then it’s that sort of stage of progression. So to answer your question, just get started. Even if you don’t publish the first thing that you do and recognize that everybody hates what they look like and everybody hates what they sound like, but your audience already knows what you look and sound like, and so they don’t have that disconnect that we have in our own brains about what we sound like. And they’re not looking at you with the fine tooth comb that you are looking at yourself. And so if I could underscore one thing, it’s just get started. I know that’s trite and everybody says it, but it really is the truth.
00:36:05 – Alessandra Pollina
Yeah, totally makes sense. Love it. I have one other thing I always ask people that I want to ask you, but just real quick, while we’re kind of still here, can you just quickly tell people how they can work with you? Because I feel like we have to say, if they do want this kind of help, what does that look like?
00:36:22 – Kerry Barrett
Absolutely. So there’s a number of different ways that you can work with me. Again, depending on your price point, your resources. I have digital programs. I have group coaching. I have one on one VAP days intensives. If you need to prep for a specific live stream or media opportunity or podcast, you can find all of that information on my website, which is And there’s a bunch of free resources there as well, checklists and guides and things that will help get you started with your video and on camera communication journey. And then I also publish a lot of tricks on my YouTube channel. You can find me on any of the socials at I am Kerry Barrett.
00:37:04 – Alessandra Pollina
Okay. Amazing. I love it. Yeah, of course. We should just watch your videos. And I love that you have so many options, so many different ways people can work with you. I do always ask, if there’s one thing you wish you knew about when you were first starting your business, what would be that one thing that you wish you knew?
00:37:17 – Kerry Barrett
I would say it comes down to knowing your audience. And I actually do know that because I knew that from my newsroom experience. When we were writing a story or crafting a story, we would think about our audience, like who the viewers actually were at home and what would make this particular story important to them. And that’s how we crafted. I crafted for all sorts of randos that were never going to be somebody that I could help or have impact with. And had I done audience research at the outset, I would have been able to tailor my offers talk about their problems and potential ways to help. I could have created more value and impact through any of the content that I put out there and I would have saved myself a lot of money and a lot of time. So know your audience.
00:38:11 – Alessandra Pollina
Love it. Great. Anything else? Any last word of advice?
00:38:14 – Kerry Barrett
The last word of advice, I would say, let me talk about trolls for just a quick second. That’s another thing that people get in their heads about. And I will say this, trust me, I read plenty of mean tweets that were directed at me over the course of 20 years in the news industry. And I will say this. I’ve never met a person who is happy with themselves and happy in their life who has time to get on the Internet and troll people that they don’t know. However, there are people who will do it. Most of them are miserable. And also recognize this, at the end of the day, they know who you are and you have no idea who they are. So keep that power balance in your mind. They’re sitting in the stands watching you in the ring with the blood, sweat and tears. They don’t get a say in what you do or how you do it.
00:39:09 – Alessandra Pollina
But don’t let that hold you back. Not matter what someone’s going to say. I love it. So good. Thank you so much. This was really great.
00:39:18 – Kerry Barrett
My pleasure. Thank you for having me.
00:39:19 – Alessandra Pollina
Yeah, I’m going to link to some of your free resources that you mentioned and obviously your website and everything too, so people can find you. Hopefully people will go check you out and we’ll make some new friends. And I just really appreciate you sharing all of this with us today.
00:39:32 – Kerry Barrett
My pleasure. Thanks for having me on.

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