Instructional videos are extremely effective ways to validate your expertise and increase your following. For some though, creating these videos can be a challenge. How do you make an instructional video? Where do you start? Do you want to be more informational or creative? How do you make it the best, easiest-to-follow video?
Most people prefer to watch a video giving instructions than read about it, which can be a stressor for creators. Do not worry though, you have come to the right place. After reading these steps, you will become a professional in instructional videos. So sit back, relax, and take some notes on getting the most out of your future virtual expertise.
What’s Your Niche?
This first step is the most important- what are you trying to instruct? What is your video about? Whether it is baking a cake or how to create your own business, figure out what you want to instruct your audience on. Having knowledge in your area of instruction will help you narrow down your options and the road you want your video to take.
Pick an Instructional Video Route
Are you making a tutorial? Maybe a training video? Or even an explainer video? Choosing which video route you want to go down will help make this process easier.
To help you out, here is an explanation of each type of video:
Tutorials: Tutorials videos are more of a step-by-step process, and are also known as a “how-to”. An example of a tutorial can be, “How-to french braid your hair”, or “How-to change a car tire while on the road”.
Training: Training videos are used more in a professional setting, such as training someone on completing a job task, or pre-work training on harassment and proper workplace conduct.
These instructional videos are used more in a work or school setting.
The three of these routes are just examples of the popular types of instructional videos a creator makes. More types of instructional videos are listed here.
If using animation for your video, decide what video animation platform would fit best with your topic. Softwares such as Animaker, Blender, and K-3D are just a few great starters for making animated video content.
Sticking to one type of video will also make the video smoother. Having a little bit of everything compiled into one video can become confusing, messy, and may make audiences click away.
Who Is Your Audience?
Your target audience is vital and is the ones who will benefit most from your video. Do a bit of research on your targeted audience.
What do they need to learn from me? How can I satisfy their needs? Why do they need to watch my video?
Ask yourself these questions when planning out your instructional video. One tip is to find some members of your audience and ask them what they look for in your area of expertise. If you are instructing them on how to change a car tire, for example, ask them what they are searching for if they were to find your instructional video. Your audience is relying on you to help them, so do not rush this step.
Listing Your Steps
In this part, figure out how you want to tell this story and in what order to do so. Pretend your audience has no idea what to do. Make sure you are being very precise and detailed in listing your steps.
If you are instructing how to change a car tire while on the road, start with the easy, simple basics. Make sure you have a spare tire, get yourself in a spacious area, put your hazards on, always have the correct materials, etc.
Listing your steps and/or objectives in an organized and simple way will create a better understanding for your audience.
Create a Storyboard
This is where your director’s fantasy comes into play. This is your video, and you get to create it however you would like.
Get a piece of paper and draw boxes, which can be each “scene” (or, use Google Slides or PowerPoint if you want to keep it virtual! Each slide is its own “scene”). Draw or write your ideas per box and what you want the scene to look like. Nothing too crazy, this is an area for brainstorming and getting your thoughts down on a piece of paper (or on a slide).
If you need props or something to explain your video in better detail, this could be the place where you figure out what is needed, where it is needed, and for how long.
Film Your Instructional Video
Now that you got your storyboard done, it is finally time to film/create your instructional video.
If you are filming yourself or other people: Before you even begin filming, you need the proper equipment. You most definitely need a camera, and if needed, lights, microphones, props, and other people to help you out. If you feel nervous or anxious about filming or creating your video, practice what you are going to do before filming. It is normal to feel weird talking in front of a camera.
If you are using animation: Decide which software would be most beneficial and effective to your audiences. Take your time creating it, and make sure every point is made clear for both yourself and your audience.
Both videos: Are you planning on doing a voiceover? Create bullet points or a script of what you want to say. The more comfortable you are reading and talking about your steps, the better your voiceover and video will come out. A few voiceover systems that work great are Murf, Wingman, and Fiverr.
Most importantly, have fun creating your instructional video! The more fun you have in creating the video, the more fun your audience will have watching it. Maybe add in some puns or jokes, and do not feel like it is a chore watching this video. It is your creation, and have the power to make it as fun as possible.
You know what they say, practice makes perfect!
Choose Your Video Editing Platform
After you have filmed your instructional video, where do you want to edit and upload it? The best software to use for editing videos in Adobe Premiere Pro. This software is a tad expensive, but you will get the best results using this software. It can be used on any type of computer. If you are looking for something simple and free, then your best options are DaVinci Resolve and iMovie. DaVinci has a free version that can be downloaded on any computer device. iMovie is free for all Apple users and comes with your Apple computer.
After you have finished editing your instructional video, where would you like your audience to find it? Now more than ever, there are multiple media platforms where your video can be watched. YouTube, Vimeo, and Dailymotion are three popular video services where users can upload their content. If your route is more social, then social media platforms like Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, Facebook, and TikTok may be your best choices. Or do you have your own website? Post it there, and you can also gain audience traction, which is a win-win for you.
Wherever you believe your audience can easily access your content is the right platform for your instructional video.
Market Your Instructional Video on Social Media
Marketing your instructional video after it is complete is vital. If you do not market it, then no one will know about it, and all your hard work would go to waste. A free and easy way to market your instructional video is to promote them on social media. Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and TikTok are the most popular social media platforms currently, and have a wide variety of users. What is great about social media is the diverse community that uses each platform. You will definitely reach your targeted audience, but what about the people who are not in your primary audience?
These individuals could see your video, and then become interested and be a part of your audience. You may not think of it now, but some people could benefit from your instructional video and may not realize it until they see it.
This group of people could save it for the future, share it with their friends and family, and repost it on social media. A similar occurrence may happen with your target audience, but you will never know if you do not market your video. Social media reaches every inch of the world, and millions of people could see it!
Watch Your Views Skyrocket!
After promoting your great video on social media (and other platforms of your preference), and following these simple steps, tips, and tricks, now you can sit back and enjoy the amount of traction your instructional video will receive. Watch your audience benefit from your video and the information you provided in it. Pat yourself on the back, you have earned the praise for your hard work.
At the end of the day, you are an expert in whatever field you are instructing. Whether it is as simple as tying your shoelace, to as hard as creating your own business from scratch, take these tips, apply them to your expertise, and you will be able to create the best instructional video in your field.