If I were starting my business all over again the very first thing I would do is start a YouTube channel.
Yes, it is that important.
YouTube is hands-down the most effective vehicle that I’ve ever discovered for getting my name and my content and my message in front of my ideal customer avatar.
But early on, I got bogged down in content creation. I was filming everything a week at a time and I would get very busy with clients and then suddenly a week had gone by and I hadn’t filmed a video. And then it’s so easy for one week to turn into two which turns into four and the next thing you know 3 months have gone by and you haven’t made a video.
But now, I have a system that is so simple and easy. It saves me a ton of time and makes content creation so much easier. And the best part? I can do it all in about 30 minutes or less. So, want to come join me and see what I do? Let’s do this.
Let’s start with phase one. Phase one is the planning phase.
Once a month, I set a time block for half an hour on my calendar. And this is key. We are time blocking this as a monthly recurring appointment. During this time block, we must turn off notifications. No email, no phone, no Slack, no social media. We are giving this 100% of our undivided attention for 30 minutes. You can do that for 30 minutes, right?
As I start to make a YouTube channel and create these videos, I like to keep a running list of video topic ideas. So, if I’m standing in line at the grocery store and I see a newspaper headline and I’m like, “That would make a really good video topic“, I can quickly add it to my list.
I like to use Trello, which is a free project management tool, but you could also use a Google sheet, an Excel spreadsheet, you could use the notes app on your phone. It doesn’t really matter what it is, but it’s ideal if you can access it from both your computer and your phone. And that way, you can access this list wherever you are in the world.
We’re not coming up with titles yet, these are just the topics of the videos. What will the video be about? What is the overarching theme? And if you have a few ideas of what you would talk about in that video, you can jot them down as well. But in order to know what a good video topic for your ideal customer avatar is, you need to have a niche and you need to know that niche like the back of your hand.
If you are not convinced that having a niche is the way to go, I recommend that you watch this video where I talk about why having a defined niche is so important because the riches are in the niches, that’s why. And as my idol Alex Heros says, “Don’t make me niche slap you.“
You’re going to come up with some ideas that are relevant, that are interesting, that you would feel comfortable talking about without having to do a ton of research. The more you know your topic inside and out, the easier it’s going to be for you to film this. And I don’t want you to have to spend 3 hours doing research in order to record a 10-minute long video.
During this first phase, I also like to do a little bit of research.
What are people actually Googling? I want to come up with a topic that is googleable. Yes, that is a word. I just made it up, but you know where I’m going with this.
Google owns YouTube, and so if they search for it on Google, I want my YouTube video to show up organically in the search results, meaning I did not pay for any pay-per-click ads, it just showed up all by itself. And people would so much rather watch your video than read a 3 or 4,000-word blog post. So I want to know that that topic is googleable because if there is no demand for the topic, then it’s probably not going to get a lot of views because nobody cares.
So I want to know that there’s demand for the topic before I film the video because nobody wants to make a video that’s not going to get any views, right? Now we’re going to start thinking of a really great title. I want to use the phrase that they are probably searching, but then I’ve got to add all of this emotional language in there.
What do I want the viewer to feel when they see the title of this video? Do I want them to feel empowered, excited, motivated? Do I want them to feel shocked, worried, fear? I’m trying to elicit some sort of emotional response when they see the title of this video because the emotion that they feel is what’s going to drive them to click on that video and watch it.
I could make a video called “How to jump higher” or I could make a video called “How to jump 2 feet higher even when you’re only 5’6.” That elicits much more of an emotional response than simply “How to jump higher.” So now that 30-minute timer has gone off, you’ve come up with four ideas for future videos, you’ve figured out what it is that they are searching for online, and you’ve given them a really good title, at least a working title. We can always tweak it as time goes by, but let’s start with the title in mind.
Now we move on to phase two, which is the scripting phase.
For me, it typically takes me about 20 to 30 minutes to script a video. My favorite timesaver when it comes to writing a script is to dictate. So because I’m using Trello, I go to my Trello board, I click on the card that has the name of the video that I’m planning to do, I put my cursor in there, I hit dictate, and then I just say my entire script.
For me, this is a million times faster than typing because if I were to type it out, it usually sounds much more formal. The way that I write is not the way that I speak, and if I want my script to not sound like I’m reading a script, then I dictate it. Not only is it faster, but it sounds better in the end.
Now when I’m ready to film, if I do want to read my script from a teleprompter, whether it’s a physical teleprompter or a teleprompter app, but if I want to read it from the teleprompter, I have my entire script written.
All I have to do is copy and paste it into the app. And bonus, since I have it all written down, I can also turn that into a blog post, I can turn that into copy for social media posts, I can do all kinds of stuff, I can send it in a newsletter to everybody on my email list.
Now we move on to phase three, which is the filming days.
This usually takes me about 30 minutes per video. I like to batch film, so I will block out a 2-hour time slot where I can film four videos back to back. No, I don’t change clothes, people ask me that all the time. Most people are not watching your videos consecutively, and even if they did, they would see that your hair and your clothes are the exact same in each video.
I don’t think they think that you never shower and you wear the same clothes every day. I think they’re smart enough to say, “Oh, she filmed all these videos at the same time.” Do they care? I highly doubt it. I haven’t polled my audience to ask, but no one has ever said that that was a problem. If you want to change your shirt between videos, you certainly can, but I don’t think anyone cares, so why worry about it?
Now, at the beginning, when you’re not used to making a lot of videos, it might take you longer than 30 minutes.
You might want to time block 45 minutes to an hour. The first many videos that you make until it gets so comfortable for you that it’s no longer a big deal and you can do it much faster. If I’m reading from a script, I can sometimes film my video in 10 or 15 minutes. It really all depends on how many mistakes I make.
But if I’m winging it or I’m trying to read my script but then look back at the computer, I read my lines then I look at the camera and I say my line. I make a lot of mistakes because I’m trying to do it from memory. So it will typically take me about half an hour per video.
When it comes to filming, again, turn off all notifications.
There is nothing worse than filming on your phone and having it ring right in the middle of your video. Ask me how I know. You’re going to want to put it on do not disturb. You’re going to make it so that it will not ring, you will not get text messages, nothing. We don’t want Facebook notifications flying in in the middle of you trying to record your video.
If I’m recording on my webcam, I close down mail, I close down social media, I turn off the notifications for Slack. I want to give it my undivided attention because the more times I’m distracted with notifications, the more mistakes I’m going to make, the longer it’s going to take this whole process.
But whatever you do, if you are reading from a script on a teleprompter app, make sure you are looking at the camera lens.
If your script is somewhere beside the camera and you’re reading this amazing script and you never make any mistakes at all because you’re reading from the script, it looks weird, because you’ve got to be making eye contact with the camera lens. It’s very off-putting for the viewer if you don’t. Practice this. It is a skill that you need to master in order to have a good kickoff when you start a YouTube channel.
When I started batch filming, that was the biggest time-saving device ever. I figure if I’m going to get camera ready and I’m going to do my hair and do my makeup and decide what I’m going to wear and put up the lights and the camera and the microphone, it’s a total waste to do this every single week. Just at least film two or three videos back to back, if not four. If you do four, you only have to do it once a month. So much easier than doing this weekly. Trust me.
Now we move into post-production phase or as the cool kids call it, POST.
I’m not cool, so I just call it editing. You can take the time to learn the basics of editing.
When I first started my channel, I had iMovie. It came free on my computer. I had no idea how to use it, so I went to the University of YouTube and I typed in something like “Basics of iMovie”, “iMovie for Beginners”. I taught myself the bare minimum just to make my videos presentable. I was not trying to win an Oscar, I just wanted them to not totally suck.
I am a big fan of Marie Forleo’s concept of B-minus work. Everything that you do does not need to be an A+. A B-minus is good enough to make your video watchable and bring you new clients. But if you are a perfectionist, and I know you’re out there because I hear this all day every day, so many people who say I am a perfectionist, then you’re going to outsource the editing of that video to a professional.
Hire somebody who will do a far better job than you because this is what they do for a living. Just find someone on Fiverr or Upwork, find a virtual assistant, go to one of these websites where there’s a flat fee per month and you can just upload your video. They will edit it for you and it will look way better than anything you could do yourself.
Once your video is back from editing, now it is ready to upload. That’s the fifth and last phase.
You’re going to need an eye-catching thumbnail and chances are the video editor can make this for you as well. You’re going to upload the video, the thumbnail, you’re going to give it that amazing title that you thought of once before, you’re going to write a helpful description in the box below the video, add your custom tags, add some links, link back to your website, link to a lead magnet or a landing page, link to where they can follow you on other social media platforms.
Now, why would you want to go through all of this effort just to make YouTube videos?
Well, because this is how you start building your email list of potential clients who have already raised their hands and identified themselves as someone who is in need of a coach like you and wants the program that you have to offer. If they didn’t, they wouldn’t be watching your videos.
Having to start a YouTube channel can take you from being a struggling coach barely making ends meet to having a six or seven-figure a year business just based off of this one platform alone. But how do you convert YouTube viewers into people that give you their contact information and go into your database so that you can follow up with them?
It’s called a lead magnet.
And right here, I have the ultimate lead magnet creation cheat sheet. This is my secret weapon for creating an irresistible lead magnet that makes people voluntarily join your email list because they want it so badly. It is totally free. Go get your lead magnet creation cheat sheet, start making some lead magnets, drive that traffic from YouTube to your website, and start building your coaching practice faster than you ever thought possible.
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