Making video is hard. If you are reading a blog post about the 10 Myths of DIY (Training) Learning Video then you probably think making video is hard. Things are “hard” when we don’t know how to do them or we haven’t mastered the skills required to make things easy.
I used to think my Bubba (Slovak for Grandma) and my mom were magicians in the kitchen. I thought the cooking they did looked so hard. For example, the first time I made an egg casserole (as a youth) I was enthralled by the way the salt disappeared into the creamy mixture. The result was an overly salty, inedible mass of egginess. I thought, “Damn! Cooking is hard!.” My mom was like, “Follow the recipe next time. Read the recipe top to bottom. Measure the ingredients. Move to the next step. You can do it!”
Hard became easier! Process plus praise made things easier.
Learning how to make video is a set of skills akin to making food. You need process and affirmation and you will make the “hard” into “easy”. You can do it! Learning Carton is here to help make that happen.
Let’s look at 10 Myths about DIY (Training) Learning Video so you can see where process will help you make video!
1. It’s expensive
To determine how much video costs to make should start with the business purpose. Heck, every thought around video production should start with the business purpose. If you can’t answer the question, “Why does the business need this video?” then you should make something else.
Video requires two things: Skills and Tools. Skills are harder and more expensive to obtain than the tools. How much time have you devoted to learning a skill that makes you money? Making a video is a set of processes along with applied skills. You can learn them. They are not difficult, they require practice. The tools, well, this may surprise you, but all you need is your smartphone and a computer.
Suggestion: Find a DIY (training) or certification program that teaches you how to make DIY (training) learning video. Practice making videos with your phone.
2. It’s too complicated
This myth, “It’s too complicated” is what people say when they don’t understand the curricular structure that leads to knowledge. Think back to your elementary school days. At one point, you were presented with concepts like geography, biology, reading, math, or even a foreign language. I know you found these topics complicated at first. I also know (former teacher here by the way) that you were made aware of knowledge, a process was applied to learn said knowledge, and over time you developed skills and a mastery of the discipline.
Video is a school subject.
There is vocabulary, step-by-step formulas, practical demonstrations, and finished products. Jump into a course and start learning. Learning how to make your own videos will not only help teach your people, but you will also develop a skill that will improve your communication with your family and friends.
3. It takes a long time to make
This is true if you have no idea what you are doing, but think you are an expert. A skilled video production expert can make a DIY (training) learning video in a few hours, depending on the type of video. Screencasts, animated explainers (using rapid online tools), lectures, and how-to videos can be created in less than a day. Scenarios/simulations, micro, live-action explainers, and complex how-to videos can take days and/or weeks to complete.
If you master the processes, you can make videos super fast. The key is to own the knowledge and skills needed to make a video. Then, you will have the behaviors needed to make videos quickly and expertly so that you can deliver instruction through video.
You can do it! Learn the skills. Seek the affirmation. Do it!
4. It’s hard to make it look professional
Professional video has three things in common. The audio quality is excellent. The image is well lit, in focus, and easy to tell what’s going on. And finally, the editing is minimal so that you can’t tell it’s been edited. If editing is hard for you at the beginning, then focus on excellent audio quality and a stable well-lit image. It really is that simple.
5. You need a lot of special gear
False. All you need is your phone and a microphone. As you get started you can use online editing tools. As you level up your skills you can decide what’s most important to the type of videos you are making. When you get started, don’t buy a bunch of gear. Focus on writing solid scripts that meet the business need. Learning video is all about improving the KSB (Knowledge, Skills, Behavior) of your learning audience. Fancy camera gear and expensive lights do not make people smarter.
The Camera Gear You Need to Make DIY (training) Videos
The Lighting Gear You Need for Learning Videos
The Audio Gear You Need to Make Learning Videos
The Computer Gear You Need to Make Learning Videos
6. People will think it’s boring
The only way this myth becomes a reality is if you lose touch with your purpose. If you are using video to improve the knowledge, skills, and behaviors of your learners then you can create it so that it’s not boring. How you might ask?
- Keep the length snackable. Short chunks are more interesting than long chunks.
- Hook them in the beginning.
- Change the visuals often and time those changes to the narration or the music.
- Make it colorful.
- Use subtitles to engage the viewer.
- Have someone (person or animated character) talk directly to the camera.
- If you have the power, use comedy.
7. I look terrible on camera
Bullshit! You just need to glow up and own that performance. Self-doubt is real and I’m not trying to discount your anxiety or fear. However, the best way to overcome anxious or fearful emotions is to offer yourself an opportunity to practice in a safe space. I suggest making selfie videos and sharing them with a supportive friend. Get yourself looking “going out” ready and then make some short videos where you talk right to the camera. Do multiple takes until you get one that makes you say, “Damn! That’s really good!” Then, send it to someone who will give you honest yet supportive feedback about your tone of voice, eye contact, and body language. You can look great on camera. You have to own it! Be the boss on camera! Anyone can make this happen with commitment and confidence! Eff the haters! You are improving their knowledge, skills, and behaviors. Haters gonna hate. Let them! You go on camera and help people learn!
8. It has to be entertaining
Entertaining is a subjective term. I suggest you think about your DIY (training) learning videos as having to be ENGAGING. Yes, you are competing with streaming services with Hollywood talent in front of and behind the camera. Yes, you are making videos for an audience that watches more videos in a day than they read. Remember this: most YouTubers and Tik Tokers were not professional video production professionals. They found a way to entertain their audience with good content that ENGAGES their audience. Your job as a DIY (training) learning video maker is to ENGAGE your learners with content that makes them interested in the topic you are trying to teach. How do you engage your audience? See myth 6 for a list.
9. No one will watch what I make.
I worked for the oldest training video production company in the United States. One of their founders was famous for saying something like: we don’t have to entertain them because we have a captive training audience. I love and hate this statement. He’s right. Your audience will watch your videos because you are providing the instruction they need. However, it’s up to you to make the video engaging so that they want to come back and watch it again. See myth 6 for a list of ways to improve engagement. I dislike the “captive audience” statement because it lets (training) learning video creators make bad, boring, bleach my eyes, videos that no one wants to watch. Know that your videos will be watched! The question is, what will you do with the audience once you have them?
10 Editing video is too hard
Editing is like cooking. Yes, we’ve come full circle. If you never made an egg casserole, you are a kid, and you are fascinated by salt disappearing into the eggy glop, you will fail. However, if you are editing video and you seek the process and practice you can master editing pretty quickly. DIY (training) learning video editing is fairly easy to execute. It takes time to master this skill, and I’ll agree with the kernel of truth in this myth. It is hard to edit a video if you want to make a video that looks like it was made by someone who has been editing videos for years. If you want to make basic cuts, put several clips of video together, balance the audio, and add the titles, well, you can learn that in an hour or so! Then, you’ll be able to practice the skill and improve your edits. Follow the processes listed in the links below, and focus on volume at the beginning.
Done is better than perfect. Your job is the improve knowledge, skills, and behaviors. Five years from now, you can chase that academy award.
Making a video is a set of processes. Video production is a field of study. Myths disappear as you improve your knowledge and skills within the field of study by mastering the processes. How do you bust these myths? Make video! Start making videos and forget about how great the quality is. Forget about trying to make it perfect. Focus on what you need to teach or train, and create a video that improves your learner’s knowledge so that they can improve their skills. As you focus on the KSB, you will get better at the processes required to make professional videos. Find a mentor, take a certification course, get feedback, and keep making videos. Visual quality is less important than the content and message. You can do it! Make a video and send it to me! I’ll give you feedback and help you grow!
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