Creating great videos may not be easy, but Amy Schmittauer makes it look easy. President of Vlog Boss Studios, an agency specializing in video content marketing, Amy has also created a following on YouTube where she talks about social media, marketing and more.
What advice would you to give to someone starting video, and getting over the fear of being on camera?
It’s so much easier to talk to people directly right? Stop thinking about the lens, and start thinking about your audience. Picture one person that you would be sharing this information with, and speak to them. It’s a completely different feeling when you have the mindset that you’re helping someone with your content versus just being another recording on the Internet.
Your videos on Savvy Sexy Social are very entertaining. How do you keep people’s attention in an age when attention spans are spread so thin?
I inject a lot of personality in my videos. That’s the best way to start. If you think you can grow in this medium by being just another talking head, you have another thing coming. So people know exactly what I’m like in the real world because I’m not putting up a rouse for my videos. I also pay a lot of attention to my analytics, and my audience retention. Anything I can do to keep my video flowing quickly with non-stop information, and entertainment so they are only watching as long as they need to, increases my ability to build a relationship with them. You’ll rarely hear a pause or an “umm” because I do a lot of cutting, so we’re constantly going from point to point. There is no downtime in my videos.
What planning, and structure goes into your videos? Are there some best practices to follow?
The best thing I did to get to a place where regular videos were not difficult for me to justify, and execute, was to come up with a theme for each new video. Savvy Tuesday, Sexy Wednesday and Social Thursday. This helped me incorporate the blog name, define my schedule that my audience can depend on and give me some direction for the kind of video I should do on each of those days. We always want to say we don’t know what to blog about but by having my own outline of what “savvy”, “sexy” and “social” means it helps me narrow down the topic that I can approach for those particular videos each week. The more you can structure your approach, the less likely you’ll get writers block to get the content created.
While I don’t believe anyone HAS to do video, I think it can be particularly useful for bloggers to break up the monotony. What do you feel is so appealing about video? After all, YouTube has over one billion monthly unique visitors.
That’s exactly it. The audience on YouTube is enormous, and more loyal than anyone I’ve ever encountered in the digital content creation world. People want to see HOW to do something. They want to witness it with their own eyes. So if something isn’t being “Googled,” it’s being “YouTubed”. Actually, the YouTube results show up in Google, and that’s an amazing way to optimize the content.
You don’t have to create video, but you don’t have to do anything else you’re not going to do well, either. You have to have the patience, and the formula to make it work for you.
Out of all the mistakes people make when creating videos, can you maybe name the top five?
- Mistaking authenticity for an unedited video. You may think rambling on for as long as you want and posting as is is the best way to show your true personality, but you’re losing people from the very distracting Internet.
- Really long intros/theme songs. The longer you take to get to the content, the more likely no one is watching long enough to get to it.
- Waiting too long to post from being too critical of your first videos. If you’re new to vlogging, you may not love the first ones you post, but it’s the only way to get better. Do some practice runs, and then commit to it. The best way to not be embarrassed by old videos is to post new, and better ones to push them into your archives.
- Loud music throughout the video. It’s not background music if I can’t hear what you’re saying. This takes some practice. I had to work on this as well.
- Not taking advantage of all the tools that YouTube has to offer that will optimize your presence. Change isn’t always bad. If not for the new features like In Video Programming, Associated Website Annotations and Playlists, I wouldn’t have the regular growth of my channel that I do today, and I definitely wouldn’t have as many conversions to the most important call-to-action: getting YouTube viewers to go to my website. As of this year, YouTube is the #1 referral source to SavvySexySocial.com because of these features, beating both Facebook and Twitter.
Where can people learn more about you, and check out your stuff?
Visit SavvySexySocial.com for all of my content. I make videos regularly as stated above, but I also do the occasional written post and podcast. I also love to tweet: @Schmittastic is my personal account, and @SavvySexySocial is where you can follow along with the blog updates.
Mike Stenger is a writer with a love of all things technology.