The last post in our series of in depth guides to social media sites is about YouTube. Probably the hardest of the top three social media sites for authors to see as necessary. After all, you are a writer not a director or an actor. The truth is everyone who has a brand and wants to sell it needs a YouTube channel. Pictures and video speak more to consumers than words do. I know, I know, as a wordsmith this might break your heart just a little bit, but think about it; a video is much easier to remember than a quote. People will be intrigued and drawn in by your memorable videos.
You might be thinking, “But how do I even start making videos? I don't have the knowledge or equipment for that.” Fear not. As always we are here to guide you. First, you need a YouTube channel.
Go to YouTube’s website and click “my channel” in the tool bar on the left side. You will have the option to set up a channel through your Gmail if you have one, or use a different username and password. You want your channel to be under your name so that your audience can easily find you. There will be a drop down menu to choose what this channel is for; you can choose “art, etc.” Now you have a channel. Add a picture, the same picture you have been using on other social media sites, where it says “add channel art,” and upload videos by clicking “videos” and then “upload a video.”
Types of videos to upload to your channel:
- Welcome Video. This would introduce yourself and your brand. Let people know why they should take interest in you as an author and problem solver. Remember your value statements.
- Testimonials. These videos are of fans or well known individuals who can vouch for your work and how it helped/inspired/entertained them.
- Interviews. Do an interview with someone that you like or that relates to your field. This is a good way to offer your audience helpful information that will grow their trust in you.
- Book Trailers. These are very important. A movie trailer gets audiences interested in upcoming movies, and a book trailer does the same. Michael Hyatt explains how publishers are using book trailers to sell books.
- Tutorials. Show your audience why you are an expert in your field.
- Call to Action. You want your audience to be inspired and motivated to take what they learn from you and do something with it. So, inspire and motivate them.
You might still be skeptical about whether or not you need to make videos for a YouTube channel, but trust me they work. Videos can help to build your brand by offering memorable visual material, like commercials, to your target audience. They can spread your reach by building your fan base and help promote your books. Michael Hyatt speaks to the importance of video in brand promotion.
But, you’re not a professional videographer right? That’s ok, you don't have to be.
How to create videos:
- Record your own. You don't have to be an Academy Award nominated director to make a video of yourself talking. Just make sure the quality of video is good.
- Animate it. Get animation.com offers drag and drop animations for free.
- Stock video. You can find stock video footage from sites like shutterstock.com. You will have to pay for this. There are also some free sites as well.
- Hire a professional. If you really don't feel comfortable making videos yourself at this point, then look into professional services that have discounted prices for simple videos like SimplyVideo.
Whichever route you take, know that video will help promote your author brand. And don't forget to provide links to your YouTube channel on your website, as well as promote your videos on your other social media sites.
What is your favorite book trailer? Share it with us in the comments section below.
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