As an entrepreneur in the ever-changing world of technology and social media platforms, I’m consistently assessing and reassessing what I do, where I share, how I share, what I spend my time on, etc. Pinterest and Instagram weren’t even around when my blog launched! And I shared on YouTube and Facebook in the pre-algorithm world. Let me just take a minute to remember the good-ole-days when I just had to post in one place…
The good news of all of this change is there are more ways to reach a wide audience. The bad news is you have to pick and choose which platforms you’re going to focus on and how you’re best going to use them. Unless you have a large team of people, you just can’t do them all and do them all well. So, my focus over the past few years has been my blog, Pinterest, Facebook, and Instagram. My poor Twitter and YouTube accounts have pretty much been left to be raised by wolves.
Twitter can fend for itself until I figure out how/if I want to use it (and to what end.) But, YouTube…I’ve been thinking a lot about YouTube. Here are the reasons I think my YouTube channel deserves a little attention… (I’m letting you into my business brain here.)
- YouTube is owned by Google (and Google basically runs the world.) When people search for things on Google, guess what comes up at the top of the search? Whoever is paying Google, first and foremost, and then videos. Videos on YouTube. When you make videos and share them on YouTube, your chance of coming up at the top of the first page on Google increases.
- YouTube is a monetized platform. You can earn money just by posting content there. Facebook and Instagram have added ways to make money directly on their platform (as opposed to indirectly by sending traffic to your site, selling a product or service, marketing, working with sponsors, promoting products, etc.), but they aren’t quite as obvious as YouTube.
- Video is a fun medium that can do some things better than words and pictures. That’s why I’ve used it for tutorials over the years. I could write paragraphs on making a slipcover (and I have), but it’s so much easier to tell you and show you.
So, my business and creative brains have both been thinking about my YouTube channel and how to invite it back into my work routine. After doing some research and thinking through my own passions, a few clear subjects emerged that make a lot of sense to share on video. Book reviews, art supply reviews, tours, and, of course, my old standby – tutorials.
Book reviews were the most obvious to me. I’ve always felt a little bound when I’m sharing my book recommendations here. I can share a few pictures and say a few things, but that’s not always enough to really give someone a good feel for the book. When I shop for books to add to my library, it can be hard to find interior images, especially for books that are old or out of print. What if an art book is full of black and white photos, the paper is poor quality, or there are only five plates? That is not the kind of book I’m looking for and I’d like to know that before it gets delivered to my door.
Here is my first book review. It’s a book I shared on here recently, Nature’s Palette, but it was fresh and I was excited about it. You get to see all through the book and I share what I like about the book, so you can decide if it’s something you want to buy or add to your wish list.
I filmed a couple of reviews last Friday and I already made some notes for how I can make them better in the future. I know these aren’t “viral video” material, but that’s not really my goal. I want these videos to be a good resource.
art supply reviews
I know that not all of my followers here are artists, so I try to temper my enthusiasm about art supplies and only share about them here and there. But, YouTube is a perfect place to branch out and share about all of my favorites as well as things I’m testing out. Again, I hope it will be a good resource and it gives me an opportunity to share what I’ve learned over the years of buying and testing out supplies to find my own favorites. I can even include reviews on sewing/knitting/crochet supplies and DIY/woodworking tools.
I don’t know why I haven’t done more of this in the past! Tours don’t have to be of a whole house or an entire room (although they could be), but they can be of a drawer, a workspace, a collection, a stash, a sketchbook an inspiration board. I’d love to do more tours to give my readers a better, more interactive look at my spaces and things, how they are organized, and why I love them.
Of course, these have been mostly what I’ve posted on YouTube over the years, but I have learned a lot from the feedback I’ve received on those videos. Some of the comments were brutal, but what I heard over and over again is “stop talking and just show us how to do XYZ.” A part of the way I teach is to reassure and encourage, which involves a lot of talking. And, I’m also just a talker. I didn’t earn the name Marian Motor Mouth in third grade for holding my tongue.
But, tutorials generally aren’t about chit-chat and people aren’t watching the video because they follow my blog. They are watching it because it came upon it in a search and they want to know how to do something. So, I’m going to make (and remake) tutorials with that in mind. Short, informative, to the point, done.
For those who are video-watchers, what kind of videos would you like to see from me? Are there any book review requests? Anything you’d like a tour of? You are my best resource for content and ideas. When I’m mentoring other bloggers or content creators, even retailers, I say, “Questions are a compass.” When people ask you, “How did you do that…” or “Where did you get that…”, those are pointing in a direction to new content you can create. My dear blog readers, you have no idea how many great ideas you’ve given me over the years in your questions and comments. Thank you for that!
Of course, I’m getting all of this renewed excitement for YouTube as I have a lot of work on my plate – recording the Feels Like You audiobook (Eep!), pre-book-launch stuff, taking on a batch of freelance articles, completing commissioned paintings, doing some freelance product design work, taking time for some of my own pet projects, finishing my basement, plus writing here on the blog! Oh, and I’m getting ready for my next art sale! It is set for Thursday, July 29, 2021, at 10:00 am EST. I’ll be posting a preview soon and it will be including all of the paintings I did on my trip to Isle of Palms and Charleston.
Well, it all keeps me out of trouble…