message to a new audience

What a wonderful age to live in where your message can be broadcast through so many channels … Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, and your personal website. Many of you are already using these platforms.

Take your message to the big screen

I want to encourage you to take your message to the Big Screen! Okay, well not THAT big screen, maybe just the little one on your computer or phone. I’m talking about video! YouTube makes it easy to have your own channel. You can upload your video on Facebook and Instagram. Now with the introduction of Facebook Live you can connect with your audience in real time.

A new devotional app 

I want to introduce you to a just-launched video devotional app called Refocus. This is an app that where daily, short video devotionals are grouped according to plans. Anyone can subscribe to the plan, get a daily notification to watch and then comment if they choose. (This app also has a church component where church leadership can post videos daily. Keeping their congregations connected between Sundays.) I’m excited about this new technology for many reasons.

First, the videos are short (two to five minutes), they don’t have to read anything so they can listen/watch on the go, they get to see the author ‘live’ which they cannot do when reading a written piece. In fact, you d not even have to be a reader at all!  And it can be accessed globally in minutes! I can’t help but think of what Jesus said in Mark 16:15, “Go in to all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.” This gives us a tool to actually do that!

How it helps you hone your public speaking craft

For the contributor, a video devotion is a great way to hone your craft of public speaking and on-stage presence. The first time I videoed myself I felt awkward and self-conscience. It’s hard to be animated when you don’t have an audience! But the instant feedback in re-watching my videos helped me to develop my comfortability, style and rhythm.  And I could always re-record if I didn’t like the first take!

I use a sturdy tripod and record right from my iPhone, which has amazing quality. But what has been a miracle tool for me is the Video Teleprompter App. I write my script in Evernote, copy and paste it in the Teleprompter App, secure my phone in the tripod, set up my place and then press record. The app scrolls my script (I can set the pace that best matches how fast I want to talk) on the left side, where the camera is, and I can see myself on the right side of the screen.

As I’m looking directly as the camera you can’t even tell I am reading!! This is genius! I don’t have to memorize my piece and get flustered when I forget. It’s all there written for me!

Some people can do their recording in just one take. I cannot. But I can edit video, so if I goof up, I scroll back to the place where it all went wrong, step back in place and keep recording. I then Airdrop the video I captured onto my computer and into iMovie  where I splice and dice, adding opening and closing text, always including a link to my website.

Take your message to a new audience

Not only does this open up new audiences for you, it helps those who want to hire you to speak to see you in action.  Although it’s only a snippet, it’s enough for them to get a feel of your communication style. I have also found that I get more comments on a post that has a video in it. It lets my reader to get to know me better when they see me ‘live’ on screen.

Another benefit in being a video devotional creator is how it’s helped me become a better editor of my work. When I only have a few minutes to get my point across, I learn to be succinct and stick to only one point, instead of cramming in too much information. And when you deliver only one point it’s easier for your audience to remember it and put it into practice.

message to a new audience

So next time you have something to say, consider making it a video!

For more information about Refocus and how you can be a contributor, contact Emily at

Emily Nelson lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband, Gregg. They have launched three boys out of the nest so Emily has more time to write, speak and serve. She contributes to Refocus, a video devotional app, is a blogger at Beyond the Red Chair and loves to emcee events.

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