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How to Film & Edit Video for IGTV

How to Film & Edit Video for IGTV

IGTV is the latest long-form video platform to come out. IGTV or Instagram TV allows users to upload 15 seconds to 10 minute long videos, in Portrait Crop. That means that video is vertical rather than landscape which has been the standard for video. Instagrammers are complaining about having to film extra video just to make content for IGTV but I am here to say that it’s not really that hard.

I have a simple way to edit your videos for IGTV that DOES NOT require you to shoot two versions of your footage. Check out my tutorial on how to film and edit video for IGTV using Adobe Premiere Pro CC and make sure to head over to Instagram and follow me to see more IGTV content.

Gear I Used to Make This Video:
My Vlog Camera – http://amzn.to/2FEchU5
Main Camera – http://amzn.to/2GELnNb
Main Cam Lens – http://amzn.to/2EucObH
Vlog Cam Lens – http://amzn.to/2E8fAFW
4K Digital Recorder – http://amzn.to/2DX5gNS
Mic – http://amzn.to/2GBAgoa
Camera Backpack – http://amzn.to/2EAoUQQ
Action Camera – http://amzn.to/2EyWA18

Video Transcription:

Hey, what’s up? It’s Jerad, and I wanted to talk today about how to shoot and edit video for IGTV. That’s Instagram’s new, longer form video platform that allows most of us to upload between 15 second and 10 or 15-minute videos, depending on who you ask, and whose account you’re looking at. And then for those with more popular accounts, they can get up to 60 minute long videos.

So a lot of people have been talking about how to shoot for that, or whatnot. But for me, I do a lot of stuff on YouTube, and I wanna do a lot of stuff on Instagram TV, and sometimes it just doesn’t make sense to go and shoot two whole versions of a video. I’ve definitely tried that, and it makes for a lot longer editing process. Sometimes videos need to be longer than 10 minutes or 15 minutes. If I had one of those accounts that was accepting up to 60-minute videos, that might be cool, because then I wouldn’t have to worry about shooting different versions. But I think what’s important is that on IGTV, we’re used to … Well, on Instagram in general, we’re used to moving a little bit faster through content, and so maybe shorter form content that is 10 to 15 minutes or less is good, because of the attention span, and how fast we wanna move through Instagram. Do you really picture yourself watching an hour long video on Instagram? I think it would have to be from somebody who was a more popular influencer or at least, maybe a celebrity or something like that to make you wanna watch through that long a video.

So I wanted to talk, anyways, about how to shoot and edit video for that platform. Now, I’ve been kinda playin’ around with different camera setups. This is a Sony a7 III here, and I have it kind of set up for vertical shooting. This isn’t the best handle for it. I just kinda did this temporarily. I’ve messed around with the a6500. I’m kinda showing you a couple of photos here of some vertical video formats that I’ve kinda been messing with. But I’ve decided I don’t necessarily think it’s the best option to shoot vertically like this, to shoot everything vertical. IGTV, the quality of the video that they’re wanting you to upload is not 4K, it’s actually pretty close to HD. And so, considering the actual size of the image that they’re wanting you to upload, you might as well shoot 4K and then just crop in and get tighter in on your shot.

That’s essentially what I’ve been doing so far. I’m filming this in the standard format, 4K. Camera isn’t flipped or anything like that. So I’ve got all this extra room out here on the sides and so the only thing I have to focus on is just making sure that either the main action stays centered, or that I’m find with doing a little bit of post-production editing. So now, when I’m deciding whether or not I wanna shoot something and then put it up on YouTube, and then maybe put some of it over on IGTV or maybe a version of both, I’m essentially going to shoot like I’m gonna be shooting for YouTube. I’m just going to try to keep the action centered in the frame so that way, I can crop.

So to get the action in the center of the screen, you can also do some key framing and kinda move the video around within the constraints of the portrait view. And I did that in the first video that I uploaded to my personal IGTV. I did kind of this Father’s Day weekend recap, because we did a bunch of stuff on Father’s Day, and I had a couple of proud dad moments that weekend.

The first video that I uploaded, there has some shots from an obstacle course run that my kids did, and I had to kinda key frame a little bit and move that video around. You almost can’t even tell that I did it, because there was so much camera movement to begin with. So that’s essentially what I did there to get the action centered into that smaller, just that portrait. Because essentially, if any action was happening on the outer sides of the screen, you wouldn’t be able to see it. So just like I’m doing here, I’m filming, I’m in the center of the screen. I’m looking directly into the camera, which is what I would be doing if I was wanting to do a IGTV video. I typically would be talking to the person that is holding their phone. And so in that instance, it’s gonna be easy for me to edit that down.

So when I’m shooting B roll, any shots that I’m gonna shoot to kind of add to this video to make it more interesting that I’m gonna edit into the shot, I might consider keeping that action in one side of the camera frame. So whether I center that, which means I’m not gonna have to do anything other than just drop the video in, or if I keep it over maybe on the right third or the left third, then all I have to do is slide the video over, and I’m gonna show you exactly how I do that in post production. And you can film in 4K. This camera, most of the cameras, actually all the cameras that I use film in 4K and I’ll make sure to list those down in the description below on YouTube and if you’re watching this on IGTV, there’s a short link down below that you can go to to see my list of stuff. This is the equipment that I use, and I haven’t had to change a thing. I’ve just had to change my mindset in how I actually film, keeping in mind that now I’m not just trying to make it look good in a standard kind of landscape wider view, I also have to think about how that’s gonna look in portrait view, when somebody’s watching it on IGTV.

So let’s jump over to Premiere Pro. I’m gonna show you how my I have my video set up. We’re actually gonna be editing this video that we’re talking about. So the first half of the video you’re gonna get to see how I edited that and Premiere Pro so that I can have my YouTube version and my IGTV version, and that means doing all the edits only once. I’m not creating two separate timelines. Essentially, I am, but I’m not editing everything into two separate timelines. I’m only having to do any titles or any text onto screen once. I just have it all set up so that we only have to do the work once, yet we’re getting a landscape version of the video and a portrait version of the video. So let’s head over to Premiere Pro and take a look at how that’s done.

All right, so we have our project here, and I’ve basically gotten as much done as I can editing for YouTube. So you can see here, we’ve got our video. I’ve got some images that I’ve kinda put in here. I’ve got a couple of titles that I’ve put in. And so the video’s pretty much done. This section here in the middle is where we’re gonna put what you’re watching right now. And it’s gonna require a little bit of trickery to get all of the footage that you’re looking at now to actually look good on IGTV, but the main thing here is to show you how this footage that you’re looking at now can be cropped in easily.

So we have our sequence that you’re looking at right now. We’re gonna go head and create a second sequence by just going to sequence, and you can see I already have a preset here, called Portrait 4K UHD, but I can go into settings and show you exactly what I’m going to need to create. We’re gonna wanna choose custom. We’re going to want our vertical to be 2160. So this is if you’re shooting 4K, of course. If you’re not shooting 4K, you’re gonna need to figure out how to get to whatever your resolution is, just crop down. So I’m gonna type in 1215, and you can see that instead of having 16 by 9, I now have 9 by 16 footage. So essentially, this is the same. It’s gonna be the same height as the 4K footage originally was, it’s just gonna be a lot narrower, of course. We wanna make sure we choose square pixels. If you don’t have square pixels chosen, your ratio here isn’t gonna look right. And then everything else, you can just kinda leave default. And like I said at the beginning, saving it as a preset’s gonna save you a little bit of time. So I’ll go ahead and title this How to Film Edit for IGTV Portrait. Hit OK, and you can see here, now we have this portrait mode, black sequence ready to go.

Now the beautiful thing about this editor, is I can simply drag the sequence … This is the other sequence that we’ve already edited. I’ll just drag it and drop it right here onto the timeline. I’m gonna go ahead and keep existing settings. I don’t wanna change them. And so now I have basically a whole video ready to go. The only thing is you can see a few things are a little wider than they need to be, as far as the text goes. That’s something that I can adjust later. And then, let’s scroll to … Oh, here’s where we have the images. Those images, because of how I dropped them in, those images look perfect. Remember here, I basically cropped them center and then put a blurry version, so the images stacked. So let me show you exactly what this looks like. I’ll turn this off. So you can see, this is just a blurry version of the image maxed out at 250% exactly. And then on top of that, I put another version of the image. And you could even get creative here and actually edit this in Photoshop and drag it in if you wanted to. There’s a lot of cool ways that you can make that look even better. I just did it pretty quick, just so that we can see those images in there quickly. Obviously this is something I’m gonna have to resize, but …

And doing it this way, let’s go to this link. That’s a prime example. Let’s go to that link that I wanted to display there. So here’s that link. Obviously, this is too wide. It’s cut off, nobody’s gonna be able to see that link. I can resize this. So let’s just go ahead and let’s take that down to say, 80%, and then we’ll go and view it here. Look, it automatically adjusted it here. So the reason that that happened is because this timeline here, essentially was just put right here. So that’s great. That timeline is right there, and I have the ability to edit it in one place, and have it automatically update in the other location. So when I go and resize the titles at the beginning … So this title obviously is a little too wide for the IGTV version, or the portrait version, as we can see here, it’s a little bit cut off. This one’s gonna be a little wide, as well. I can just resize those and make them fit. Now, that’s gonna make the text a little small, maybe for the YouTube crop, or the landscape crop, but that’s okay. We’re just focusing here on making this as simple as possible.

Another thing that you can do is, we’ll just go ahead and create another version of the sequence that we already had. So I’m gonna go ahead and make that 2160 by 1215. Make sure that’s 9 by 16. Hit OK. So we have that new sequence. I can also just copy and paste everything, so I’m gonna hit command or control A, and then command or control C to copy it to my clipboard. And then I can come over here and paste it all in and everything is right in, and I have a duplicate of my timeline. So the only problem here … And see, it even actually resized it. So maybe this is a better option. The only problem is that this is not dynamically linked, so if I need to go back and make some changes to my original version, I’m now gonna have to go back and make those same changes here.

So this is just another way of doing it. You can either do it the dynamically linked way, and then maybe change your assets, the additional assets that need to be sized appropriately. Or, you can just copy and paste it into a whole nother … And you see the images look good, actually. This source URL is gonna be really tiny, so we’re gonna need to go back to that and increase its size to fit. So definitely, there’s pros and cons to both ways. But I wanted to show you that that’s a pretty simple way to do this. And then when you go to render out …

So this is another thing you gotta pay attention to. When you go to render out your IGTV version, so I’m gonna make sure that my timeline is selected. I’m gonna hit command or control M, depending on whether you’re on Mac or PC. You’re not gonna wanna go and change the render out settings to any of these presets, because it’s gonna override your portrait settings. Notice that if I go and choose YouTube 4K, it’s gonna mess things up. It’s gonna basically put my portrait video in the middle. You wouldn’t be able to upload this to Instagram, their IGTV without having issues. So you’re gonna wanna make sure and just leave it on match source high bit rate. I’ve got a 660 MB file here. I can then export this, and this’ll be ready to go. I can upload it directly to IGTV through the app, or through the web interface.

Alright, so I hope this video helped with figuring out what the best way is for you to create an edit content for both YouTube and Instagram TV, or IGTV. It is cool to build fun setups like this with cameras that are in portrait mode, and displays that are in portrait mode and all that stuff, it’s definitely impressive. But I’ve tried filming this way, and it’s very challenging, especially if you’re gonna be vlogging or something like that, to hold the camera when you don’t have that extra real estate for camera sway to film that way. So I highly recommend taking advantage of the fact that 4K video is more than enough footage, as far as the resolution goes for IGTV. So shoot all of your stuff in landscape, and then just crop for portrait. That’s the best advice I could give you.

So I’d appreciate a follow on IGTV or a subscribe on YouTube. You can check out some of my other content. My goal here is to help us all grow and get better at creating our content, at running our businesses, at optimizing our lives, and that’s kind of the variety of content that I’m putting up here on this channel. So make sure to follow along if you’d like. I look forward to seeing you in the next video, and take care.

Blog Creative Tutorials

3 Ways to Find Blog or Video Topics

Three ways to find blog or video topics

I believe that nothing is new but what can be new and unique is your take on it. Finding topics for blogging or making videos can be tough. I want my content to be fresh and relevant. I also want it to provide value. If the content I create is not providing value, I am just making noise. There is enough noise out there without my addition to it, so I do my best to find topics that I can provide value by talking about.

When I run out of ideas or can’t decide on a topic, I use tools to research topics to determine their relevancy. These tools not only help me find ideas, they help me decide how I should approach it.

BuzzSumo: http://buzzsumo.com/
Quora: https://www.quora.com/profile/Jerad-Hill-1
Answer The Public: https://answerthepublic.com/
Feedly: https://feedly.com/

Do you have any tools or ideas for finding topics? Share them in the comments section below.

I originally created this as a video, but have made some changes to my Youtube channel. This is the transcript of that video that I edited and posted here for you to read. Please let me know if you have any questions.

Hey, what’s up, its Jerad. And I have a highly requested topic. I get asked this all the time when I run into people and they’re asking me about the videos or the blogs that I post. And that is how I find topics. So, this is Three Ways To Find Video or Blog Topics. Now, I’m constantly needing to find new topics because I run out of them. I’ve talked about before that I have this, like, extreme, kind of, BS meter that I can only talk about things that don’t provide value for so long before I really start to feel like, I need to make a change. Now, that happened when I started vlogging. I felt like, you know, sometimes I might make an interesting vlog, and other times, I was just like trying to film something for the sake of filming something. And so, I feel like when I put content out there that there needs to be value, and how can you keep coming up with topics? Like, how can you find things? It requires research. I mean, you look at all the popular blogs and YouTube channels out there that talk about specific topics, and I guarantee you, they’re doing research, or they have researchers of their own that do it for them.

So, here are some things that you can definitely do to find topics. You can go to a website called BuzzSumo, and I’m linking to all these things down below for you, so, you can check them out. And then on my blog, there will be those links as well. So, you can make sure to check out the extra resources that will be available on my website. Link is down in the description below. So, BuzzSumo, you basically can ask any…you could put in any search term, or phrase, or topic, and you can see how often it’s being shared on the web, like what kind of buzz there is around this. It’s great because you can, kind of, get an idea on whether or not a topic is worth talking about or writing about because you can see what kind of buzz is happening around it. Not only that, but you can see what the titles of those articles, or those blog posts, or those social media shares, and stuff like that are, and it, kind of, gives you validation as to whether or not that idea is worth talking about.

You can see what other people are saying about it as well. So, it helps in the research process because you might start out with a topic like blogging, so, you type in blogging and you start to see all the recent buzz on blogging. And you start to see what people are writing about, maybe that, kind of, leads you down, like, well, talking about blogging is like a huge, kind of, wide range thing. Like, how do I get more specific? Well, you know, maybe you’re wondering if people are still blogging or if it still makes sense to blog. Or will blogging ever died, like is that a thing that will last forever? Will people continue to blog? So, you’re now, kind of, going down this trail of trying to find something more specific to where you can answer a specific question or talk about a specific, like, facet of a topic, instead of being extremely wide. Like, why should you blog or something like that. Like in this video, I’m talking about here’s three ways to find new topics, because that’s obviously a thing that anybody who’s blogged more than a couple of times is gonna run into. So, BuzzSumo helps you, not only find potential new ideas, but also validate ideas, or even maybe figure out a better way maybe that’s an idea, but with a little bit of research, you can find the better approach for that idea, the better way to deliver information on that idea.

Another one is Quora. Quora is, kind of, a question-and-answer website where people post a question, hoping to get an answer from somebody who has information on that topic. It’s been a lot of fun for me because I follow specific topics, I answer questions whenever I can, and then sometimes, I even ask questions of my own to, kind of, get some information out of people. Now, I typically ask questions in the form of wanting people’s opinions. So, I might already know the answer to it, but I want to know what other people think about it. Quora is a great place for that. Simply go and sign up for an account, follow a bunch of topics that are interesting to you, and you’ll start to see questions. And those are things that, you know, people need to know that they want to know. And they are topics that could be answered in a video or in a blog post, or an article, or something like that. So, you can get an idea by paying attention to and seeing what other people are asking. Questions that come up often or even questions that have a lot of different answers to are great opportunities for you to provide clarity and not…I mean, you can answer, they’re on Quora of course, but you can take that topic and you can make a video or make a blog post about it as well.

Another one is AnswerThePublic. I love AnswerThePublic because you go there, you type in maybe a topic like blogging, or something like that, or, you know, skateboarding, or anything, and you get all of these different types of questions that people are asking out there on the internet about this. And some of them are very basic and not even relevant, but there are a lot of them that… I mean, you can take the topic of skateboarding and you’ve instantly got, you know, 20 or 30 ideas right there that you can go off and, you know, produce video content, produce articles or blogs. AnswerThePublic is fantastic.

So, between these three different sites, you’re definitely not gonna run out of ideas. I mean, there’s so many ideas in just using these three different sites. But I did want to add a bonus which is Feedly. Feedly is a website that allows you to follow blogs or different websites that post articles, so that you can, kind of, follow topics. And I subscribe to a lot of different websites on Feedly. So, what that allows me to do is, kind of, instead of having to go to all these websites, one at a time and view their recent articles, their articles are pulled into Feedly. I can categorize them based on the topics, or my, you know, what I’m interested in. And then I can see all their recent articles and blog posts and whatnot right there.

I can see things that people are posting about, questions. I can go and check out those blogs. I could see the comments that are down below which typically, is also a great place to farm for topics. Because if somebody posts something like, you know, say, I did a blog post on, you know, three ways to find video or blog topics. And then somebody down…like many people down in the comment section was asking a similar comment or a similar question, I could…that’s a potential another video idea or another blog idea right there. So, you can even find ideas in the comment section of other blogs from popular websites that you follow. And Feedly makes it easy for you to follow those websites and get all of that content into one place. And Feedly has a really nice smartphone app, so, you can even just be scrolling websites and, kind of, seeing what is new out there on the fly without having to go into web browsers. And remember, you know, all your bookmarks, your bookmark bar gets out of control. Feedly is just a much easier way to, kind of, keep all that stuff together. So much so that I pay for Feedly Pro because I think it’s well worth it, to have all my stuff across multiple devices and have those extra features. Feedly Pro definitely adds value to my life.

If you like this post, consider subscribing to my newsletter. If you have a resource, share it down in the comment section below. I would love new resources, and also, just to see what some of you out there are using to find new ideas. Definitely, if you have a blog or a YouTube channel, share that down below as well. I’d love to see what you’re working on. And that’s gonna do it for today’s video. Hope to see you back next time.

Blog Creative Tutorials Passive Income

Five Reasons You Should Start Making Videos

5 Reasons Why You Should Start Making Videos

Did you know that over 300 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute? How about the fact that almost 5 billion videos are watched on Youtube every single day? Those are some crazy statistics and a very good reason why you should consider making videos. In today’s Thursday Thoughts video, I discuss five of the reasons why I think you should start making videos.

This article was originally created as a video. I have converted it to an article to share here.

Hey, what’s up? It’s Jerad and I have a Thursday thoughts video for you, and that is Five Reasons Why You Should Start Making Videos. Just like I am right now, I’m making a video. And making videos is easy. It can be scary and a lot of people don’t like the idea, and I totally get it. But making videos, here are five reasons why I think that it’s a good idea for you whether you are just starting out in maybe a new entrepreneurial venture.

You’re thinking about getting into freelancing. You’re working on trying to find an alternative income source, or you just have something interesting that’s a hobby and you want to share that with the world. Video is a great way to do that and I want to talk about five reasons why you should do that, and maybe even start today.

1. Making Videos Help Your Public Speaking Skills

The first is that it helps with your public speaking skills. Now, I may not be the most eloquent speaker ever, but definitely creating videos has helped with my public speaking skills. I tend to talk fast. Sometimes I even kind of stumble over my words and whatnot. But over the years in making videos, I’ve gotten so much better at speaking and when I have to get up in front of people and speak, I can do that so much easier because I’ve been practicing. I’m sitting here talking to a camera, which a lot of people don’t like doing. But it’s a lot easier to get used to that than it is speaking to people in person.

But now I’ve gotten to the point where I can go into any situation. And as long as I have the information that I need, I could speak to people about it and I don’t feel afraid to. So, it really helps with your public speaking skills. Especially because after you make the video, you can go back and watch it. You can learn some of the things that you do maybe that you don’t even really notice like a lot of times I say “uh” or “um”, or these little filler things that I put in place when really just stopping would be fine. But I put these words in place and it kind of makes for a poor listening experience. I just did it right there.

So, it helps with public speaking skills, and the more videos that I produce, the better I get at it. The more I watch my content, I get better at speaking and just come up with things that I can improve on overtime. And I get better at them the more that I do it. So, that’s one huge thing, I think, is that it helps you with public speaking. A lot of us have problems with that. It’s one of the number one things people are most afraid of and don’t want to do is speaking in public, so if you can even just get over that by making videos, it’s a huge win, I think.

2. Videos Are More Personal

Number two is videos are more personal. I mean, sitting here and watching me, we’re not interacting like we would be if we were face to face, but I’m looking at you. I’m trying to engage you in this conversation that we’re having. What that does is it becomes much more personal than if I just wrote out a blog or something and you’re reading my text, or you’re looking at something that I posted on social media. A video is much more personal and much more engaging.

There’s nothing wrong with blogging, writing articles and stuff. There’s definitely a place for that and for sharing information in that way, but a video is very personal and we connect with videos on a more personal level. It’s one of the reasons why TV is so popular, why it made radio … I mean, radio is still a thing, but it definitely made radio a thing of the past.

We don’t sit around listening to our radio these days, we watch TV. We typically only listen to the radio when we want to listen to music, or when we want something on in the background that we can listen to. Definitely, video changed things big time when that became something that we all had in our homes. And smartphones have smartphones, we all have video right in our hands. It definitely has even made video even more personal and more accessible.

3. It Builds Your Personal Brand

So, number three is that it brands you. Branding, or personal branding, or whatever regardless of what you are doing for a job professionally or even just in your leisure, if you want to be branded in a sense where you want people to recognize you around a certain topic, video definitely helps. It really does separate you. And I’m getting ahead of myself because one of my last topics is on how it separates you apart from others, but it really does help brand you.

I like talking about these things, because these are things that I talk about to clients of mine when I’m trying to get them into using video on their website, or more photography, or trying to get them into blogging, or whatever for content purposes, or social media. All these things, these different topics that I talk about, in one way or another I end up talking about to clients. And if I’m talking about them to my clients, and trying to get them to do them because I feel that they’re valuable because they’ve been valuable to me, why wouldn’t I just want to share that to the world? And that’s one of the reasons that I use YouTube for that, to share that information. Not only just with what I’m doing here, but with the technology that I use and enjoy. We like to review those things. We like to share that information with others, teach people how to use them, and video is just a fantastic way to do that.

For me, it’s so much easier to sit down here and talk into the camera and put a video together than it is to sit and write it out because if I write things out, I can delete and go back and do it again and delete. And oh, I want to say it in a different way and blah-blah-blah-blah. Video, I could just get it out. It’s my personality and it’s easier than me wanting to be super meticulous over my grammar and everything when I’m writing.

Video, it does brand me. It’s much faster and easier for me to get content out but it does brand me and what I’m trying to accomplish here because you’re seeing me, and that’s what I want. There are a lot of different ways to brand yourself or to get your information out there, but I think the best way to do it is to be visual about it and that’s what I’m doing here.

4. It Adds Value

Number four is that it puts value-added on steroids like I’ve always felt that there needs to be value in what I’m putting out there. If I do put stuff out there and maybe it starts out being valuable and then I start to kind of run out of ways to make it valuable, I end up stopping whatever I’m doing. And that’s why I tend to have gaps from time to time. I get busy. I don’t have the time to research and make sure that there’s enough value there and so I stop doing it.

With video, it puts value on steroids because you have an easier way to connect with people. If this was an article, it could easily be thousands of words and somebody would have to have time to sit and read that. And while it would be valuable, it’s something that would consume a lot more of a person’s time. Not that that makes the information less valuable, it’s just that it makes it less likely that they’re going to have time to get through all the content.

Instead, I could put out a video that takes 10 minutes or less. It adds all the same value and so it kind of amplifies that. You’re also getting the excitement that I have about what it is that I’m talking about and then you can also go and see all those additional resources. Being more visual about things sometimes helps especially when talking about the technical stuff that I do, the reviews and all that stuff.

I could upload photos and type-type-type, but actually showing people what it is that this product does or how to use this or whatnot in a video form adds more value. A lot of times, video puts that value on steroids because it makes it much more visual. It makes it easier for people to connect with and it makes it more personal.

5. It Differentiates You From Others

The fifth thing is that it does separate you apart from others. A lot of people can sit down and write or come up with content or even hire somebody else to write. But for you to get in front of a camera and talk about something or to share something or teach something or whatever on video, it separates you because not everybody wants to do that. Not everybody can do that.

And a lot of it is mental block. We get afraid to get up in front of a camera. We’re self-conscious. We have a lot of fears and whatnot and those go back to the first thing which is being better at public speaking and even being able to articulate thoughts into a camera. But it separates you apart and after you get a little better at it, it definitely makes you stick out from everybody else that they’re allowing the fears to keep them from doing something cool like this.

I have a couple of bonus tips that will help you get started and potentially grow faster. The first one is not to worry about your first videos being maybe lacking in quality or content. The simple fact of getting started is what matters. You definitely want to have some value to add in the videos that you put out there but when early on, don’t worry about them being topnotch production quality videos.

To me, the audio quality is most important in a video than it is the video quality. I don’t necessarily care if a video is a little dark. I can’t really see the best as to what’s going on in the video so long as the audio is good. If you’ve ever watched a video where the audio was poor quality, maybe it sounded like they were talking through an old Taco Bell drive-through menu thing or whatnot. There’re ways that audio just, it becomes … I can’t handle the audio, so I bounce and I go listen or watch something else.

As long as you can get the audio sounding good which even with smartphones these days, if you’re in a nice quiet room that has some furniture and some carpet to deaden the sound a little bit, you’re going to get decent audio quality even if you don’t have nice big lights or anything like that to make the video quality really good. Don’t worry about all of that stuff. Just focus on getting good audio. The quality of your video can improve over time.

As you get some traction, maybe you decide, okay, it’s time to get a couple of lights to make the lighting a little better and then maybe it’s time to get a microphone to get even better audio quality and then maybe it’s time to move on and get a better camera so that the overall quality of your video improves. You can improve over time. You don’t have to start out being in this perfect place where everything is right and you have all the proper equipment. If you wait for that, you’re never going to get started and other people are going to jump in and start doing what you wanted to do and that’s a bummer. You need to get started now.

That’s five reasons why I think you should start making videos. There are many reasons why even beyond this, I want to talk about live streaming and some other things like that in future articles. Consider subscribing to my newsletter to get updates when I publish new content.

Blog Business Creative Tutorials Growth Personal Development

Create Quality Content, the rest will follow

Jerad Hill Udemy Courses

One of the things that I’ve noticed over the years is that you can’t just start creating things and expect people to pay you money for them. I have worked for myself since I was a teenager and the only time that I could ever get money instantaneously out of somebody is if I had a physical product that they were interested in buying. When it comes to selling services or information you can’t just put it out there for sale and expect people to pay for it, especially if you’re wanting to charge a premium.

Jerad Hill Udemy Courses

One of the great things about the Internet is that if you provide valuable information, people will find it. That is been what I have found over the years. Every time I attempt to launch something ahead of providing value through producing information and making it available free, that product fails. This is why I produce so much content and give it away for free. I’m a firm believer in giving away 80% of what you know in order to charge a premium for that 20%.

Udemy 100,000 students - Jerad HillThis past weekend I surpassed 100,000 students on Udemy.com a platform for online education. My photography and social media courses, most of which are free, have been pretty popular. When I share statistics about how many students I have achieved on that platform, the first question I get is how much money have you made. Most people don’t understand because they are led by a different mindset than I am. My goal is to share information first and foremost. The money will always come. If revenue generation is the first thought when deciding to create content, you have already lost. There is no way that you can sell somebody on something if you are number one driver is to make money off of them.

Those who are making a lot of money from their content most likely had a sizable following from the beginning. Perhaps a small percentage of them were just in the right place at the right time. However, for most of us it is a long road of creating content, building trust and making friends along the way. After you have created enough value it makes it much easier to ask people to pay you for further instruction.

Though you can create on a minimalistic budget by opening up your laptop and using your WebCam, I didn’t feel that taking that approach would result in the type of following I was looking for. My courses are reviewed highly because of the production value put into them. My content is not groundbreaking, it is all stuff you could easily figure out on your own with enough time and patience. I do believe that there is value in getting instruction from a professional who understands what he’s talking about but if the quality of that production is low, that professionalism gets lost in the lack of production value.

Beyond simply producing high quality content you must find a way to connect with those that have consumed your content. Most platforms have this type of functionality but it is usually limited because their goal is get your students to buy more content. I have no problem with this, it is their platform we are using, but you must encourage people to keep in contact with you in some way if that platform limits you. Find a way to be able to communicate with your students or viewers outside of that platform that does not break the rules that platform has put in place.

You must also know what you are talking about. I don’t post or publish anything that I can’t back up. If somebody wants to know if I am actually a decent photographer, they can easily find that information out online. The same goes with my social media and online marketing courses. I have found that many educators who create these paid courses can’t even be found online. They then wonder why their course does not sell.

One of the reasons for adding production value to your content is that it makes your content look like it is a brand. When you position yourself as a brand, it makes people want to look for you outside of that platform to see if there is any other information out there. Take my Ditch Auto Photography course for example: The brand is “Ditch Auto.” I own and operate DitchAuto.Com. I also have a popular podcast I started a few months ago in iTunes with the same name. To top it all off, I admin a Facebook group for Ditch Auto, which has over 1300 members. During my course videos, I also encourage people to engage with me on the platform and on social media. People search for me by name and follow me.

Jerad Hill Google Search

The spelling of my name is pretty unique. Though not all of these search results are for content I have created, a large percent of them are.

Why do all of this, and do it for free?

I am in this for the long haul. Back when Myspace was the popular social network, I told everybody that they were nuts for posting all of their content in one platform. Your website should be the hub in which all of your efforts pour into. My online courses are no different. I use a couple of different online platforms for education and monetize 10% or less of the content I post to those platforms because I believe in giving first. Education is not all that I do. I own a professional photography business and an online marketing agency that keep me pretty busy. I would love to teach full time, but I only get about 4-5 hours each week to generate video content. I am lucky to have a studio that I have built from the ground up that can stay setup and ready to go whenever I am ready to film.

I never stop refining and making my content better. Even though my Introduction to Facebook Pages course is a free course, I re-filmed the entire course a few months ago because they content is out of date. That course has resulted in multiple consulting clients over the past few years. Should I have a paid followup course on Facebook Pages? Yes, totally. However, I have not yet created one.

What platforms like Udemy has done is made it way too easy for people to publish content. Everybody is a content creator, and while that is fantastic that it is that simple, not everybody should be a content creator until they get themselves into the right mindset. The best teachers do not decide to teach so they can make a ton of money. All of the teachers that have had the biggest impact in my life have not made much money in their lifetime. The most valuable knowledge I have obtained over the years, has came from books that I have read that were written by people who’s success came before they wrote the book, not the other way around. Am I doing Udemy and platforms like it any justice by putting up paid content that nobody ends up buying? I don’t believe that I would be. Though Udemy has not made much money from my courses, their numbers have increased a lot due to the people I have driven to their platform. Once I do begin releasing more paid courses, those numbers will start to level out and it will happen much faster than it would have had I started out with only paid courses.

All of my free courses are nothing groundbreaking. You could easily teach yourself what I taught in those courses if you spent some time bouncing around on Youtube. In teaching these courses, I am also getting better myself. When you teach something, you have to know enough about it to explain it well. This has helped me be a better photographer and provide better services to my clients. Beyond that, it also helps solidify the fact that I am a professional in my chosen fields. There is a lot of competition out there and you need to do whatever you can to market yourself well.

I see every student who signs up for one of my courses as a person who is interested in a subject and is eager to learn about it. Whether they are trying to learn something for business related purposes or simply for enjoyment, I am touching their lives and helping them achieve something. I spent countless hours making mistakes, so they don’t have to. The countless emails and reviews that have been written tell amazing stories of how my courses have allowed someone to start a business and allow their spouse to stay at home with their children. If I had put a pay wall in front of everything I produce, I may not have been able to have that affect on as many people as I have had. Once you generate that much change in the lives of others, you can ask them to pay for future content because they are now fans.

Now that I have reached this milestone, I plan to post more about my process of educating. I waited to do this because I felt that I needed to be at a professional level before weighing in on how to educate others. I am still far from a professional but I have had many people contact me asking how I was able to achieve 100,000 students on a single platform. More to come. Please follow me on Twitter or follow this blog to keep in touch.

Blog Creative Tutorials

New Course: 4 Steps to Starting a WordPress Blog Website

4 Steps to Starting a Wordpress Blog Website

4 Steps to Starting a WordPress Blog WebsiteOver the years I have spoken with a lot of people who just want to build a simple website to start their idea. They either do not have a budget to have a designer build them a website or they want to do it on their own. Regardless, I have created a free course that teaches just how easy it is to setup a WordPress website. In 4 steps, or about 20 minutes, you can setup a WordPress website and start posting content. Whether you are wanting to start a blog to post about something you are passionate about or you want to build a new website for your business, this course is for you. It gets you up and running in no time.

To sign up for the free course, visit this link: https://www.udemy.com/4-steps-to-starting-a-wordpress-blog-website

At the end of the course, I provide 20 minutes of bonus audio discussion on building a successful website. From there, you will need to learn how to use WordPress. Well, I have a course for that as well and it’s also free titled “Getting Started With WordPress – A Beginners Guide.”

To sign up for the free course, visit this link: https://www.udemy.com/getting-started-with-wordpress-a-beginners-guide

These courses are free to take.

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