Why Not Just Put My Video Content Straight On Udemy Or Skillshare?
If I can create a video and make immediate money from it, why not just create mini courses and put it straight up on Skillshare or Udemy for instance?
I can earn money using the same time investment I would previously have used to build my free content.
And I can still market my business offerings through premium content...
But There Is A Reason I Create Free Content
But then I would lose the advantage of building my long term social presence on YouTube with the free content...
Long term, I need to give free content away on YouTube, as it is the single best source for creating customers for my digital products online, people on there are actually searching for the answers to the problems I solve with my premium paid content, so I need to extract them from that platform and drive them to my core content.
YouTube is also a primary source of email sign ups, which is my long term security net and allows me to earn an income on third party platforms like Udemy, but still have an escape plan if something goes wrong there...
So if I stop producing that content, I am essentially removing my marketing content and my safety net!
Getting The Free Content Production Cost Down
All content has a cost, a production cost, so the solution then would require getting the production cost down for the free content, how can I do it quicker and smarter yet still deliver value?
How can I differentiate my free marketing content and also reduce the production cost with that content, whilst still retaining enough interest in the subject matter itself?
Finding The Run And Gun Video Marketing Style
After watching some vlogging videos, I looked at the style and realised it can be very casual, very off the cuff and I thought I would run an experiment.
Enter The Vlog
Using a vlog style, I created this piece of marketing content:
Please note, this is not strictly a vlog, but rather a video in a vlog style with a storytelling element running in the background.
The vlog style creates a deeper connection with your audience as you are sharing more personal aspects of your life, which they will respond to (puts the 'social' back into social media marketing).
I was however more focused on borrowing the style and the low production costs than creating a daily vlog.
7 Tips For Producing Vlog Style Videos:
- Always film your b-roll (your background video stuff where you are not in it) by stabilizing the camera, on some type of tripod device as this will save time later in editing.
- Try to film the audio in one location and then you can edit the b-roll over the top to create the storytelling aspect.
- Choose a location where the public is not that close for your first video, as people are noisy!
- A vlog does not need to be somewhere dramatic, it can be in your own home if you can create some interesting b-roll (making cups of tea - taking the dog for a walk etc).
- Jot down your key points as notes (instead of a script) and have an opening observation / question, core discussion in the middle and end with a conclusion and a question for your audience.
- Don't be afraid to use hard cuts between sentences, you don't need it to look professional, it is supposed to look casual, that is the vlog style.
- Find some vloggers on YouTube and carefully watch their production styles, you can learn a lot by watching some of the top vloggers.
Low Production Costs
I was able to film the Donald Trump - Marketing Genius Video, during my normal routine (I was doing the shopping), so its time cost was not huge in terms of content capture, much lower than my normal premium video content, which has planning and slide preparation and can take a week in terms of producing an end product (the Trump video can be produced in a single day).
Editing didn't take too long either, but then again I am pretty quick anyway (I have edited a video or two in my time), so was able to pump this out pretty quickly.
Still need to work on the storytelling aspect, as this was an initial test of the idea and I need to improve a couple of the elements in terms of production quality which I addressed in my second video (see below) and will keep on improving as I move forward with this type of video production.
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All I used for this was a Panasonic Lumix FZ300 (FZ330 in Europe) bridge camera (which shoots 4k), which only costs about £450 (amazing price for the quality you get and perfecting for the vlogging style as it is packed with functionality and is lighter than a dslr), but any decent smartphone, a selfie stick and a lavalier mic will do to get you started.
I also used a cheap wired lavalier mic on this shoot which cost about £15 on Amazon (a bit of background music will help cover up any this microphones failings).
And I used a Gorillapod (bendy mini tripod) to attach the camera to the car seat and also to film my talking heads section (you just hold it out in front of you using the Gorillapod as an 'arm extension' and film).
That was it...
You could even use a smartphone with lav mic and a selfie stick to carry this off, but the Gorillapod allowed me to place this camera pretty much anywhere and gives me scope for static shots and lots of different types of b-roll, so would recommend a Gorillapod over a selfie stick for its versatility if you have the budget.
My Second Video
So in my second video, Philomena was there as the cameraman and the quality lifted quite a bit.
Now I could focus on delivering my content (this was completely unscripted by the way - but if you don't have much experience, at least have some bullet points to hand).
We basically had a day out and filmed the second video, which had a much stronger storytelling element which we planned a little bit more.
So this will be better quality and a little bit easier, but if you are a one man band, then do not worry too much, the professional vloggers are all one man bands and there quality is very very good.
One of the things we will be doing, is add a wireless lavalier microphone to this setup, which will create a lot more flexibility with shots, like allowing more distance from the camera, and I will also think much more about having a script outline jotted down for the storyboard (in both these videos I pretty much shot them straight off of the cuff).
We will be doing a lot more videos in this style as the reaction to them from regular viewers was very positive and at the end of the day, if your videos are visually interesting as well as mentally stimulating for your audience then engagement will increase.
You will also get a lot more interaction from your audience and ultimately that will generate more views and better ranking on YouTube (length of view is a key metric on YouTube, the more of your video someone watches on average, the better it will rank).
So if you are wondering how you can create video content quickly and easily, this style of video may very well be a solution for you...
So How About You?
So for those of you creating free and premium content, how are you reconciling giving away free content, that could for all intents and purposes be premium content on a site like Skillshare or Udemy?
Have you stopped producing free content, or are you solving it in a different way?
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