Crochet A Trunk-Full O' Fun!

Tips for Creating Instructional Videos

I receive emails all of the  time asking advice on creating videos and a You Tube channel.  This is one message I recently got from a Raveller, bevfam. My response follows.

 

 

 I enjoy your youtube videos. I noticed you had a sizeable following and was curious about your youtube journey and experience. Do you have a post or video about that? How long did it take you to reach 100,000 views. Are you able to make an income from your videos so that your not just volunteering your time and resources? Any tips for new video makers?

Thank you in advance for your time. I look forward to hearing from you and to your next video.

 

My reply:

 

 I uploaded my first video 6 years ago. I had no intention of making money, or make videos as a career!

I had a friend who had had a stroke and she wanted to learn how to crochet a granny square. I would get her started, but by the time she got home, she would forget what I had taught her. I had read somewhere that you can put videos on You Tube for free. So I took out my little digital camera and set it on a stack of books on my dining room table and set it to macro & video mode. I filmed me creating a granny square. I thought that some other people who want to learn to crochet might see it so I went into explanation on using a smooth yarn to learn…

I didn’t finish the original series because my friend gave up on the granny square and decided to improve her knitting.

A year later, a few people had asked me for the last video, but I had given up. So I searched you Tube for someone who makes their squares the same way I do. I found Mikeyssmail. (now The Crochet Crowd) So I directed folks to his video for finishing their square.

Around that same time, I had 500 subscribers, and You Tube sent me a message asking me to become partner. I was unsure of what that meant. Teresa Richardson (TJW1963, The Crochet Geek), sent me a message giving me good advice and telling me what partnership meant. She said they would place ads on my videos and I would get paid for the ads.

I then decided to accept the partnership and I finished the series. Eventually I re-recorded the original with a newer camera.

I was thrilled to see my first deposit from Adsense. It was 69 cents!

I made more videos and started editing more and improving the videos. I knew that the more videos I post, the more ads would be placed & the more money I would make.

The first couple of years, I was only making about $30-$50 a month. Then I began using Facebook & Ravelry. My views exploded!

I still want to keep my channel personal and want to stay focused on teaching and personal interactions. I am not joining big yarn companies, or studio publishing groups to make my numbers get bigger. I make enough money to support my fiber habit and I send it to a savings account so I can go to fiber events like the crochet cruise that Mikey and the Crochet Crowd is hosting. I do not make enough to make living, but I could if I had to.

I have no idea how long it took to reach 100,000 views. I do know it took a year to reach 500 subscribers.

My video tips are:

 

  1. Keep the background plain.
  2. Have good lighting. 
  3. Try to film in as quiet a location as possible. 
  4. If you use a tri-pod, turn off anti-shake. 
  5. Use a video editing program. 
  6. Try not to ramble. (hard for me!) 
  7. Don’t go too fast! 
  8. Try to keep the video in focus and film at the best quality you can.
  9. When uploading, use the right key-words(what words would people use to search for your video), 
  10. Have a good title, (that is clear as to what the video is about) 
  11. Fill in the description with more detailed information and links to written patterns and related videos. 
  12. Use the play list feature on You Tube and create play lists of your video series.
  13. Be aware of copyright laws. I never video a pattern unless I get the designers/publishers permission… I actually decided to only use my own patterns to film a couple of years ago.
  14. Use social networking. Facebook & Ravelry are what I use. Of course there are many others out there as well.
  15. Create a website or blog. I started with Freewebs.
  16. Start crochet-alongs & challenges that feature your videos.
  17. If  you are a designer, be sure to feature your free patterns on Ravelry &  the various free pattern websites. 
  18. Be sure to link to your videos on your pattern page on your website & Ravelry and link back to them on the videos description. 

 

10/08/2013