Monday 26 November 2018

Authortube: Mistakes To Avoid


I did a piece a few weeks back about what it was like being on Authortube. I wanted to touch on a few bits and pieces about what to avoid when starting out. I feel like a lot of it can be applied to both youtube and generally when starting out on any platform. For some great bootcamp videos, check out Alexa Donne's channel here.

When I talk about authortube and the time I've been on there, I realise that I've made my own mistakes and in doing that have kinda shot myself in the foot. For the first year or so of me being on youtube I made a number of mistakes. What I'm trying to do now is tell you what *not* to do so that you don't end up like me. I want you to learn from my errors and go into it more confident about what you're doing. So here we go.

This was my biggest mistake. I would put my videos up, and interact with those who commented, would watch other channels and say nothing. How is the word supposed to spread when you won't say anything on other people's videos? You need to engage and that means commenting and liking and having discussions with other people in the AT community. It was only when I started to comment and actually get to know people that I got more engagement back. So this is a big thing that you need to do.

When I first started, I didn't have an upload schedule. I would simply plan to do one video a month, then about a month into it, four videos a month. From there it went to a post on the 7th, 14th, 21st and 28th of the month and then finally I worked out that that didn't really work and started to post every Thursday with bonus content on Sundays. Once I got into this schedule, I did so much better, so even if you're plan isn't a set day of the week, go for how many times a week and stick to it as much as you are able.


This is something I did right, in that I planned what I was going to film and when. I pretty much had the whole year planned and while I wouldn't say you have to do that, it's a good idea to know in advance what you're going to record and when. It also means you can leave gaps for seasonal content or for something that needs to be said should the need arise. I did pretty well with this in deciding that my second video of every month would be the Life Of Joey video. It gave a personal touch, some background on what I did every month and also allowed for me to give a little part of myself.

I didn't do this. In fact I barely got any help with editing either, which is something you should learn how to do. Because I didn't do my research, my first year of videos had cringe worthy graphics. So much so that I have since deleted them all because I didn't want people to look at those and think that was the kind of thing I put out now. I always planned to use my webcam and so I take a thumbnail before I shoot the video and then add my own touch to it. If you're unable to do this, then a picture of you, either your author photo or something similar and basic text is more than fine.

I also didn't script for my first few videos and they sucked! Like seriously, it showed so much that because I didn't script, I wasn't confident and it sounded like I had no idea what I was talking about. That is a bad look on any level, but especially because I was giving writing advice! On the same topic, if you don't feel confident about tackling a certain subject, don't! The worst thing you can do is give advice on something you either don't know much about or don't do yourself. That sounds fake, and it cane lead people away from you.

There are other things to decide, like whether to caption or not. I personally do because I feel like it's more inclusive, but not everyone knows how or has the time. In which case it can be something you can open up to the community. I feel like the majority of channels rely on craptions and because of that, they exclude people like me who have hearing issues. There's things like working on the right setup as well, but I'll cover that in another piece. Check out Alexa's channel because she's really good at giving the bootcamp advice and have a good time getting yourself started!

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