How to Incorporate Video Feedback with Clients (and make it a win/win)

Everything you need to know to deliver feedback via video — without the sweaty palms, awkward silences, and scheduling conflicts.

by Kat Boogaard
Updated Aug 18, 2022

Feedback. You know it comes with the territory of working with clients. 

But let's face it: Even when you see the value in it, feedback can inspire some cringes, groans, and shaky knees — for a slew of different reasons. 

For starters, it's tough to offer it in a way that makes people feel supported rather than criticized.

And rather than walk that tricky tightrope – you might skip written communication altogether.

Instead, you’re jamming your schedule with back-to-back Zoom sessions. All in the name of offering the direct face-time and encouragement you think your clients need.

But here's a question to step back and ask yourself: 

Is that approach working for you?

If you feel like you're barely surviving your overstuffed calendar – and those taxing one-on-one conversations are taking their toll – incorporating more video feedback might be the solution that saves your sanity.

With an async-first communication approach, you can still provide clients the guidance and fortitude they're paying you for without completely draining your time and energy. 

Here’s what we’ll cover:

  1. What exactly is video feedback?
    Video feedback, explained.
  2. Async-first: 5 significant benefits for using video feedback to communicate with clients
    We dig into why async video is the key to maximizing your time, refining your services, and, ultimately helping your clients thrive.
  3. Giving Feedback Using Video: 7 tried and tested tips for doing it right
    Our top tips for hitting "record" and giving your clients the feedback, encouragement, and "aha!" moments they hired you for.
  4. Ready to incorporate video feedback in your business?
    How to incorporate asynchronous video feedback in a way that works for you

What exactly is video feedback?

No, we're not talking about the technical glitch involving an obnoxious echo or high-pitched squealing.

Video feedback is precisely what it sounds like: 

It's when you deliver your reactions, insights, and comments to someone else using a video (preferably asynchronously.)

You're likely no stranger to using video in your own client-facing business. Especially if you're a coach.

It's one of the main tools of the trade, and data from the International Coaching Federation found that coaches increased their use of audio-video platforms by a whopping 83% between the middle of 2020 and the middle of 2021. 

But in this guide, we're not going to focus on delivering video feedback using Zoom, Google Meets, or other live video conferencing platforms.

Instead, we want to talk specifically about asynchronous video feedback; when you deliver your assessments and evaluations to your clients (or teammates!) via a recorded video rather than a live, real-time conversation. 

Async-first: 5 significant benefits for using video feedback to communicate with clients

Asynchronous video feedback might sound like it could potentially be cold and impersonal, particularly if you're used to live, one-on-one interactions. 

But video feedback with your clients isn't a way to shirk your responsibilities and keep people off your schedule.

When it's done right, it can be the key to: 

  • maximizing your time, 
  • refining your services, and, 
  • ultimately helping your clients thrive.

Still not convinced? Check out some of the compelling video feedback benefits for you and your clients: 

1. Ease your own time and schedule demands

You're committed to helping your clients succeed. But having to hop on a call every time they have a question, feel a shred of doubt, or need a piece of guidance – can quickly clog up your calendar. 

Even worse, it can zap your mental energy, which makes it all the more challenging to be the dedicated and energized professional you want to be.

Video feedback offers flexibility and freedom – allowing you to deliver your thoughts and advice when you have adequate time, focus, and mental bandwidth. 

Plus, it means more calendar availability for the client questions and conundrums that actually require a live call. 

2. Convey nonverbal cues

Written remarks and assessments certainly have their time and place. 

But, they often lack the context of nonverbal communication, which can further amp up your clients' nerves. 

One study found that recipients of a two-word email (like “good job”) interpreted it as sarcastic 60% of the time, even when that wasn’t the author’s intent. 

Including facial expressions, gestures, and voice inflection in your feedback messages will boost clarity and prevent crossed wires (and hurt feelings).

3. Give clients a living resource

Have you noticed that your coaching clients are feverishly scribbling notes during live feedback sessions? 

Not only is that giving them a hand cramp, but it's also making it increasingly tough for them to focus on the actual content and substance of your feedback. 

Recorded videos give them a resource they can pause, rewind, and even revisit to soak in all the suggestions and nuggets of wisdom you offer.

4. Limit nerves and anxiety

Even when you have clients who are literally paying for your criticism (we see you, coaches!), it's still a little panic-inducing to actually hear it. 

Some people might not be comfortable facing you directly to receive your live advice. 

Recorded video feedback gives them time and space to hear and digest your comments — without the added pressure of trying to manage and limit their own reactions in front of you.

5. Refine your message

Offering feedback can be such a delicate dance. 

You want to ensure you're getting your point across in a clear and helpful way without coming off as judgy or accusatory. And we all know we don’t always get it right on the first try (hey, you're a pro, but you're not perfect). 

Recorded video feedback lets you quickly discard your message and redo it until you're happy with the result. 

Giving Feedback Using Video: 7 tried and tested tips for doing it right

Alright, you're convinced that video feedback is a fitting addition to your service business. Now for the hard part: 

How do you actually offer your responses and advice on camera? 

Here are some tips for hitting "record" and giving your clients the feedback, encouragement, and "aha!" moments they hired you for. 

1. Organize your talking points

Of course, no one wants to sound like an overly-rehearsed robot. But rambling through your feedback will leave your clients feeling confused and lost. 

They deserve clear direction and thoughtful action items. 

It's helpful to pull together your talking points before you start recording to make sure they walk away with what they need.

This doesn't need to be a detailed script. Even a quick bulleted list of the main feedback points you want to hit – and the next steps you need your clients to take – will keep you on track. 

2. Prepare your recording space

Can you record your feedback videos anywhere? Sure. 

But should you? Well…probably not.

To get your clients to focus on the content of your message, you first need to set yourself up in the right recording environment. 

Here are a few steps to take before recording your feedback video:

  • Find a quiet, non-echoey space where you won't be interrupted
  • Ensure you have good lighting so that clients can see your facial expressions
  • Aim your camera directly at your face 
  • Clean up your background a little bit (goodbye, laundry basket) so there aren't distracting items behind you.

Not sure if your recording environment is in tip-top shape from your client's view? Don't worry — ZipMessage will show you a preview of your appearance before you start recording. 

3. Clean up your digital space too

Your physical environment matters. But if you're planning to share your screen during your feedback video, your digital space is important too. 

It's time to close out all of those apps and browser tabs you have open (yep, we know you do it) and focus only on the windows that are pertinent to your feedback.

For example, are you recording a video to talk through your client's latest progress report? You can have their report or evaluation on the screen so they can see the specific sections you're talking about. 

Oh, and while you're at it, make sure you remove any personal files from your desktop and turn your phone on "do not disturb" while you're recording. 

You don't want your video to be sidetracked by a random text message that pops up. 

4. Share an outline (and stay focused)

Another thing you might want to share on your screen during your feedback video is a brief outline of what you'll cover. It could even be the talking points you identified during your prep.

Think of this as a table of contents for your video message. 

Not only will it bring some structure to your feedback and help you stay on track, but it will also give your coaching clients an idea of what to expect upfront (which can help squash uncertainty and manage their nerves).

A few tips on crafting an outline: 

  • Number your talking points so clients can easily respond in an orderly way. That's especially important if you're asking questions — assign them numbers so your clients can reply directly. 
  • Before you hit record, take a quick look at your outline and ensure they're focused exclusively on providing feedback (and not walking through something they can quickly review themselves). 
  • Keep conversations narrow – it makes things straightforward for everyone. You can always create a separate conversation for any other projects or critical points you want to discuss further. 
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5. Pay attention to your nonverbal cues

Remember when we mentioned how important nonverbal communication is? 

If you aren't mindful of it when recording video feedback, you risk causing confusion. Here are a few things to pay attention to: 

  • Roll your shoulders back and pick your chin up. Slouching can make you look sloppy or disinterested.

  • Use positive facial expressions like smiles and raised eyebrows to demonstrate engagement and encouragement. Use a neutral facial expression to deliver harder-to-hear messages.

  • Maintain eye contact by looking directly at your camera.Research shows that eye contact makes you more memorable, but that doesn't mean you must have a staring contest with your webcam. Aim for three seconds of eye contact before briefly looking away.

  • Watch out for conversational fillers like "uhh" and "umm." Some will naturally creep in, but too many will undermine your confidence and cloud your message.

Listen, your clients probably don't expect you to look and act like you're delivering the State of the Union Address. But, putting some extra thought into how you present yourself never hurts. 

6. Share resources

One of the best parts about providing feedback via video is that you can easily share supplemental resources to drive your point home.

Talking to your business coaching client about some improvements you'd suggest for their website? 

In your video, share an example or two of a website that you think is effective. 

Did you mention a product you think would help your wellness client prioritize their nutrition? 

Show them the product page.

While you don't want to crowd your screen with too many apps and windows, even briefly walking them through any other tools or pages you mention in your feedback can help offer extra clarity and support.

7. Let go of perfection

It's easy to put a lot of pressure on yourself as a service provider. 

Your clients are paying not just for your time but for your expertise, knowledge, and experiences. And, knowing that they value your guidance so highly means you set a spectacularly high bar for what you need to deliver.

That's a positive quality. 

But it's also important to realize that, while your clients trust you and value your know-how, they certainly don't expect perfection. 

Don't get so hung up on production quality or tripping over a single word that you lose sight of the most crucial part of your message: the feedback itself.

If you do get lost or mess up your feedback video? ZipMessage makes it super easy to discard your recording and start over. No sweat.

ZipMessage Threaded Converstion

Ready to incorporate video feedback in your business?

When you have clients, a good chunk of your job is offering feedback. But that doesn't mean you should stuff your calendar full with one-on-one calls and live sessions.

Instead, you can incorporate asynchronous video feedback in a bunch of different ways, including:

  • Explaining your services, packages, and offerings
  • Walking through the sections of your clients' initial assessments
  • Mapping out projects, milestones, and action items
  • Delivering progress reports and updates
  • Providing thorough answers to client questions
  • Offering resources and advice to help clients on their journey

So, if you're tired of a clogged calendar and feedback conversations that feel like they're high on stress but low on value, video feedback might be just what you need to level up your clients — and your own business too. 

Want to give clients more face time without more live calls? Create and share your video feedback seamlessly with ZipMessage. Grab your free account here.


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