I just dropped the price of
the permaculture playing cards
for a wee bit.

 

 

uses include:
- infecting brains with permaculture
- convincing folks that you are not crazy
- gift giving obligations
- stocking stuffer
- gambling distraction
- an hour or two of reading
- find the needle
- find the 26 hidden names

clickity-click-click

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several more videos ready for upload  RSS feed

 
paul wheaton
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This persistent cough has made it so that I have to bail out on a lot of things. It's been about a month now.

So this leaves time for me to edit videos. And I now have several excellent videos ready for upload.

Once I get a video uploaded, I then think about how to draw attention to it. I announce it on mailing lists I'm subscribed to that would groove on it. Forums too. Then I try to think of places I have not yet been to.

So now I am spending time getting the video out there instead of cobbling together more videos. Plus, there is the question of: when do I put up the next video. I confess that lately my mindset has been: when the current video hits 10,000 views.

I thought this thread could be a place to collect ideas on how to hit 10,000 faster. Maybe some folks wanna help and would like some ideas on what they/we/I might try.

This is the hard work part. Usually boring work. The stuff that nobody wants to do. And yet, this is the part that makes the biggest difference in changing the world. I see lots of people put up videos that are now two years old and have 51 views.

So I totally understand if folks don't want to do even one tiny spec of this, but might be willing to throw some suggestions here. Some folks might be willing to do boring work, but aren't sure where to start.

So this is a great place to do some brainstorming.

What do you all think?
 
Cj Sloane
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The new video doesn't show up in the Homesteading Videos by Paul Wheaton podcast group in iTunes. Is this on purpose because those views don't show up in youtube? Just curious.

The last video uploaded there was How to render lard and that was almost exactly a year ago.
 
paul wheaton
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I think that the effort put into the kickstarter was the biggest effort to date to reach more brains.

Youtube has two worthy metrics to examine. Where the embedded video was played and where a youtube view came from. Here is a list of those sites that provided more than ten views.

Embedded:

permies.com 14,822
richsoil.com 6,733
permaculture.co.uk 1,349
good.is 613
coderanch.com 390
facebook.com 252
boatbits.blogspot.com 108
advrider.com 75
kickstarter.com 73
evohst.org 66
spokaneguntrader.com 45
zombiehunters.org 31
treehugger.com 23
thuleanperspective.com 23
silverbearcafe.com 18
homesteadingtoday.com 15
askwildehilde.blogspot.com 15
pinterest.com 12


Link:

facebook.com 1,178
permies.com 833
richsoil.com 751
homebrewtalk.com 53
stumbleupon.com 17


An interesting thing to note is that we stopped promoting this video when the kickstarter ended. And these links at these places are still building up view counts. Over the next several years they will probably more than double the current count.

 
paul wheaton
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Cj Verde wrote:The new video doesn't show up in the Homesteading Videos by Paul Wheaton podcast group in iTunes. Is this on purpose because those views don't show up in youtube? Just curious.

The last video uploaded there was How to render lard and that was almost exactly a year ago.


Josiah set up some interesting things with video and itunes. There were quite a few things that sounded interesting, but I didn't fully have my head wrapped around it. Then Josiah got freaky busy with work and so something had to go. So we haven't been updating things down that path. I think Josiah would put the video on a non-youtube host and then feed it to itunes. So I don't have the stats for that to see how well it is doing.

 
nathan luedtke
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You have over 25k subscribers on Youtube- I'm surprised that you don't hit the 10k threshold for each video within a week of posting! Do you get any analytics on view rates among subscribers?
 
paul wheaton
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I can usually count on 10% of my subscribers to actually watch a video.

For the kickstarter video, youtube has "homepage feeds and subscriptions" and it shows 5281 views.
 
paul wheaton
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In general, a fair amount of my day involves the thought "what can I do in the next hour to get 100 more views?" Sometimes it ends up being a lot more and sometimes a lot less. Usually all of these efforts will turn into thousands of extra views over the years.
 
Ben Plummer
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What did you do to promote your kickstarter video? Other than the mailing lists and forums.
 
paul wheaton
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Bill Kerans wrote:What did you do to promote your kickstarter video? Other than the mailing lists and forums.


It would take me four days to answer that completely. Adrien and Cassie put in a lot of long hours too. And Kimberly Hartkey did some stuff as well. I was interviewed about a dozen times. And I gave a lot of presentations during that time where I brought it up. I think one of the smartest things I did was to simply have jack spirko as a friend and supporter. geoff lawton and Maddy Harland helped. Ernie and Erica helped. It seems that the list of people that did a little here and there is immense.



 
Ben Plummer
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paul wheaton wrote:It would take me four days to answer that completely.


Fair enough, having all those good people help would make a difference. Plus people here were really excited and probably shared it more than they might your regular videos.
 
Ben Plummer
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Hopefully you won't get too annoyed by a random guy on the internet suggesting design changes, as it is a pretty annoying thing for me to do. I fear your wrath!

The video-focused sites I go to have their latest front and center. You do when folks get to the forums but not on the permies or richsoil home pages. Richsoil would be pretty easy to add a latest video up top and maybe one from each article next to the link/description? Maybe use javascript to open a modal window so they don't leave for youtube and away from the articles. This is quick and dirty:



A similar latest video should be able to fit above the mailing list signup at permies and still keep both above the fold at most resolutions. With the right font it shouldn't impact the design too negatively. May only glean you a few extra views but shouldn't take much time to implement.

I had to screencap Sepp from your latest, I cracked up when he chomped that dandelion with a big smile.
 
paul wheaton
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I think you are right: the richsoil page needs an overhaul. Hmmmm .... I have an idea for a short term fix ....
 
Ben Plummer
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I've not done web or print design for reals in a few years and am a bit rusty. If a volunteer for things like that would be useful let me know.
 
paul wheaton
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I was going to upload the next video this morning, but the dandelion video is at only 8,246 views.

What would be a good way to get a couple thousand more views?
 
Keith Riddle
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I work for an ad agency, and do video editing for a living. My number one suggestion on getting more views is to keep the video's short and sweet. When I read "80 minutes of a keynote address" I reflexively start yawning - no offense intended as I trust the content is captivating. For the most part though, people have very short attenti - Hey look! A squirrel!!
 
Tom OHern
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When I come across new you tube channels that I like, I tend to go and check out the rest of their videos. Do you have any idea on how many additional view your older videos get in the days following you posting a new video? I would think that if you posted two or three videos a week, that views that came to see one of the videos, would then also stick around to see your other new videos. In that way you could build views in a cascading style.

Then, when I subscribe to a channel, and I load my youtube home screen, only the most recent videos from all the channels I've subscribed to pop up. So if you are only posting a video once every few weeks your videos are getting buried from the standpoint of most of your subscribers, and then the basic promotional feature built into youtube is not being utilized. I get that you want to focus on promoting only one video at a time, but it seems that the best way to get more views is to have more content and let the passive systems in Youtube do the work.
 
Mark Lipscomb
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Keith Riddle wrote:I work for an ad agency, and do video editing for a living. My number one suggestion on getting more views is to keep the video's short and sweet. When I read "80 minutes of a keynote address" I reflexively start yawning - no offense intended as I trust the content is captivating. For the most part though, people have very short attenti - Hey look! A squirrel!!


I would think this audience would buck that trend. Speaking for myself I don;t come to permies/Paul's videos looking for russin dash cam type videos. I am looking for deep substance and content. For example Paul's Dandelion video and his Jerusalem Artichoke video strike the perfect edit between brevity and content.

 
Rachel Ward
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I'm a newbie on the actual forums, but I have been watching Paul's videos for some time and I helped fund his kickstarter campaign. (I'm not a special snowflake, just giving facts.)

I was very surprised to hear you are only getting 10% of subscribers to become viewers on YouTube. I don't know how the back end of YouTube works in depth but that number seems low to me.

One thing I know many video makers do is ask their viewers to share on FB and Twitter. I realize those lines can feel repetitive, but if you can get the 10% who are watching to be more active in helping you promote your vids, they might attract more high-quality subscribers who will also, you know, WATCH.

If you took one of the suggestions above and learned how to get YouTube to help you build views as well, then you would have the possibility of creating more high-quality viewers too.

I for one will take my own suggestion and begin helping you promote your vids on social media.

Rachel
 
Jennifer Jennings
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In addition to what Rachel and the others have mentioned, it seems the videos that have requests for feedback (not in the actual video, but requests for feedback in the notes section of the video description) get a lot more interaction. Just a thought.

As for the videos, 80 minutes is a lot for almost any internet viewer. Even if you broke the video into 25 minute segments, that may work better for audience capture. If they are interested, they will continue to watch more, and are more likely to share or FB a 25 minute segment than an 80 minute video. This has proved out for me when I write an article as well; doing a short series is almost always more attractive to readers than a single big article, and it draws readers along. I would imagine video would work the same way.
 
Nicholas Green
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I know I will watch an 80 minute vid, but I will probably only be able to convince two of my friends to take time out of their evening to watch the full video.

For the Internet culture in general, spending 80 min on YouTube is a lifetime.
 
Adam Chisholm
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My two cents...

Adding a tag requesting the videos be shared via G+, Facebook, Twitter etc. Good idea, but I'll second the reply below about length. I'll sit through four hours of video on diatomaceous earth, but my permaculture virgin friends (i.e. future proselytes not yet indoctrinated) need a gradual indoctrination - I mean introduction.

What about making a long video and short video trailer uploaded as a playlist rather than as individual videos. Then you can lure in more minions with the trailer and the ones who are going to give a care in the long run are going to keep watching the full video. You could do a comparison on this and see how many people view the trailer compared with those who follow through on the whole 80 minutes.

What about a bit of "PaulWheaton12 Branding" You've got great clipart/graphics on the main page of permies. Why not have something eye grabbing and professionally appealing that makes a viewer recognize it as one of your videos. I know that given a choice of permaculture videos to view I'm going to go with the one that looks like it has quality editing from the thumbnail rather than the one that has half a shoe and a pile of chicken manure because that is where the camera was pointed when the videographer turned off her camera (not your videos Paul ;P just an illustration of how I select my videos to watch)

What about a brief intro to each video like you have the common outro (If you like this sort of thing...). Again, its not multiplication by exposure (people still have to click the video) but it's multiplication by branding and making the product something a discriminating video viewer will be more likely to share.

Keep up the good work. I enjoy your videos and I'm so thankful you introduced my to the music of Jimmy Pardo. We literally put our house on the market and are moving to a 5 acre mini-farm in central KY because you, Geoff Lawton, Ben Falk, and a little show called Peak Moment kicked us into reading the design manual and deciding we were going to raise our three kids as permies from thenceforth. Thanks for all your work spreading the word.

As an aside, I listened to your podcast with Adrian about how you worry that when you work hard you save a life and when you screw around for an hour, someone dies. Morbid? - yes, Plausible? - meh, but you also have inspired quite a few others who are spreading the word locally (I've got five or six other families from my church who are currently discussing doing what my wife and I are doing and I feel confident I'm going to get some of them to take the leap with us). I teach third grade and this fall we're going to be planting a couple of food forest guilds in our school courtyard as a part of my "hey, I'm sneaking permaculture into how I teach science" plan. So in some ways, you can take a bit of the credit for anyone we save and buy yourself an hour or two of screw around time.

Also and on the DL I've been completely poo-less for three weeks now and the wife hasn't noticed anything so...we'll see how long I can go.
 
paul wheaton
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Video length: keep in mind that the primary mission is to bring more people to the empire (or more precisely, to talk about permaculture to more people). The secondary mission is to get more views for one video. With that said, I do agree that on youtube, a short video will get more views than a long video. Further, I have a lot of short videos. Another marketing approach is to expand into many different markets and try many different things. Diversity! So, yes, there will be some short videos and there will be some long videos.

Current Youtube subscribers: I am a bit shocked that out of 25,000 subscribers I get only about 2,500 views in the first few days.

Thumbnails: we have started trying some new thumbnail stuff with the videos.

Do you have any idea on how many additional view your older videos get in the days following you posting a new video?


Pretty much no change.

In that way you could build views in a cascading style.


I have been making use of annotations on youtube - the part where I show several videos at the end and people can click on which one they want to see. This appears to be improving the view count for some videos.

social media: I kinda hate to use video real estate to mention social media. I do know that we push the videos on the social media a lot. I think it does help some.

What about a bit of "PaulWheaton12 Branding"


Every video has stuff about permies.com.

What about a brief intro to each video


I remember when Josiah was helping me with trying to get onto more video networks, one place would only do something that looked like a tv series. It seems the only thing we were lacking was the intro and some rolling credits (even if they were made up).

///////////////////////////////////////////////

I guess I'm hoping to develop more relationships with other media. I thought this thread might lead to people posting videos to local mailing lists, meetup groups and the like. Something more networked. Or maybe somebody would say "have you looked into ______" and that would be a biggie.

But I do feel like 10,000 is the number. While the number is less than 10,000 I feel like I have more work to do.





 
Katrin Kerns
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Jennifer Jennings wrote:In addition to what Rachel and the others have mentioned, it seems the videos that have requests for feedback (not in the actual video, but requests for feedback in the notes section of the video description) get a lot more interaction. Just a thought.

As for the videos, 80 minutes is a lot for almost any internet viewer. Even if you broke the video into 25 minute segments, that may work better for audience capture. If they are interested, they will continue to watch more, and are more likely to share or FB a 25 minute segment than an 80 minute video. This has proved out for me when I write an article as well; doing a short series is almost always more attractive to readers than a single big article, and it draws readers along. I would imagine video would work the same way.


I agree with Jennifer here completely. I'm not a video editor or all that savvy with the whole structure et all but when it comes to watching videos on YouTube or here I tend to go for the shorter one's first. I get interrupted a lot and don't always have the time to watch something longer. It doesn't mean that I'm not interested, in fact I often come back late at night when I'm less likely to be interrupted in my video viewing and watch the longer one's if I'm interested in the topic. Also, even though my husband is interested as well, he has adult attention deficit disorder and Asperger's syndrome so even though he likes the topics it's much harder for him to get into or watch anything over 15 to 25 minutes long.
 
Jennifer Jennings
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Adam - it's great to have educators on board! Congrats to indoctrinating the youth into the permaculture way, you sneaky teacher. Education is the way of the future...

And Paul, I can definitely understand the frustration when the whole expansion thing seems very hit or miss. Unfortunately, permaculture is not mainstream, yet...so it begs the question (and please do NOT be hatin' on me for bringing this up)...maybe what we need is introduction to the outside non-permie world via a popular culture vehicle.

What I mean is, most of us are already aware of Mother Earth News, organic gardening, and other forms of earth-care. But if you watch TV or listen to the news, that is definitely NOT the majority of focus. By no means am I suggesting that Kim Kardashian should be the media face of permaculture, but to some degree we are preaching to the choir - what we need might be a breakout moment where a "famous and followed" non-permie implements some form of permaculture that the masses can watch as an intro to the core concepts.

That being said, there may be a few "middle-ground" media whores/famous people that would garner immediate interest and huge exposure for us like...the Duck Dynasty family. They are popular, everyone from all walks of life watch them, they are hunters and some of them environmentally aware. Get your foot in the door with their producers, offer them a redesign of one of their backyards into a permaculture food forest, and you'll have a pocketful of Neilsen ratings that you can hang your hat on. Just a thought.
 
Erica Wisner
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I don't have the magic answer for more views; I tend to come to you for that sort of thing.

I gotta agree with the shorter-gets-watched more thing. Especially with crappy download speeds, which is probably more common than not for backwoods permies like us. So shorter is likely to work better for both extremes - dedicated followers living the dream, and mainstream folks who have good connection but short attention span.

That said, I also love the depth of longer videos. You linked to one of an entire toby hemenway presentation a while back, which was over an hour, and wonderful. It took several sessions to watch it due to download speeds. I'm likely to watch the Mark Vandermeer one, and probably your keynote too, because of how excited you have been in private conversations about both.

I like the idea of cutting longer things up into 'part 1, part 2' if possible. Start each one at an interesting topic point, like where you introduce a new project. That might help with referrals too - someone can point their friend toward the relevant part, and then they might watch all of the segments.

I do hear a lot about teachers organizing garden projects. The normal class limit is 45 minutes, so 10- to 15-minute videos might get used in classrooms, or even assigned as homework. If you put out a particularly 'family friendly' video (one in which, accidentally, nobody swears; and the projects described could be fun to do with a class garden project), you might mention it specifically in your email about the release. You could also do a video specifically about a garden project, and encourage the teacher(s) to provide sample lessons. (This sounds like a lot of work... but if the kids watch the videos as homework, one class could rival all but your top 5 sites for pageviews on that particular video / series.)

I like having the latest stuff on the top of the Permies page. Cute kids beaming at me reminds me I want to watch it, even if I don't have time now. Boobs, fire, funny animal faces, may do the same thing. The thumbnail stuff definitely helps.

I might see a video listing in 3 or 4 places before I finally commit the time to watch it. Marketing often tracks these 'impressions' because more of them lead to more clicks / sales.
You said you're not interested in devoting video time or comment space to social media sites, but would you consider having someone upload the videos to FB pages as they come out? A single 'wall' where any of your followers can post and comment might create some buzz with minimal Paul-and-adrien work.
If someone's on your YouTube channel, and also on FB, and also on Permies, they might see the same new video 3 times in one day and be more inclined to click it sometime that week. I'm not a big FB person but I know people who spend most of their internet time there. Might catch a more mainstream audience and make it easier for people to refer friends and family. Family referrals are more trusted, and more tempting to pass on.

Funny stuff also is fun to pass on. The kid failing to blow the dandelion head made a nice running gag, and he's also on the thumbnail. This is good.

I enjoy your crappy animation, and funny / ironic commentary on common situations. Maybe something to consider for the queue.
A set of short, 'quotable quotes' from you recent presenters that make a funny or pithy 1-minute video? With links so people can watch the whole thing?
I would enjoy doing my 'concrete rant' on camera next time we get together - the one that starts with how traditional brick masonry works, and ends by describing curtain walls as 'really heavy shingles.' Downtown Missoula next time we visit, so we can include some gorgeous older brick buildings, and ugly modern ones?

-Erica W
 
Lew Wallace
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I'm with Erica. Thumbnails that draw my attention, or at least make it easier to recognize what I've seen before, help my muddled brain (no Erica, I'm not implying your brain is muddled). ;o) I second (or third, or fifth) that "New up top" is awesome!!! My internet connection doesn't like it when I scroll through a bunch of vids trying to fine the one or two new ones. Also along the internet connection lines... shorter videos load much faster, and therefore get watched sooner. I like long in-depth subjects/presentations, but they are generally easier to watch (connection wise as well as personal free time), and sometimes digest, if they are split up into sections. Your commentary and personality are what drew me to Permies in the first place... so keep it up!
 
paul wheaton
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Jennifer Jennings wrote: what we need is introduction to the outside non-permie world via a popular culture vehicle.


THAT is what I think this thread is about.

Yes, I think it would be great if more people posted videos on their social media stuff. Plus mailing lists and blogs, etc. AND we need some serious brainstorming about avenues that have not yet been pursued.


 
paul wheaton
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The thumbnail stuff definitely helps.


I agree. Maybe the thing to do is to get a thread going about thumbnails. Maybe folks with some skills in that space can cobble some things together and we can try stuff and see how it does.

I do think that good thumbnails could double traffic to the whole empire.

I enjoy your crappy animation, and funny / ironic commentary on common situations.


Really? Hmmmm .... maybe I should do more of those. They are pretty easy to whip up.



 
Jennifer Jennings
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I must say, I was surprised that Erica listed boobs before fire.
 
Katrin Kerns
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Funny, this thread got me going back through your youtube channel and watching more of the videos that I haven't actually seen. Maybe dropping a thread like this once in a while will keep things in the public mind a bit more often and if you ask us all (those of us who use twitter and facebook) to maybe post links to our social media when you do a reminder it will get more of a response. Well, just a thought anyway. I know with me that anything out of sight is out of mind and I'm less likely to remember to do it. But I certainly understand if you don't want to be everyone's baby sitter reminding us constantly to watch and share videos.
 
Adam Chisholm
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So I admit this at the risk of seeming an idiot...I googled "social media for video". I know not the brainiest of options but certainly a simple one. In addition to several listings of video hosting sites (yahoovideo and youtube topping the list along with a slew of others I never heard of) I also stumbled upon a site (linked below) specifically addressing your original question.

Again, I know this is basic and you've probably already done a search of hosting sites like this before, but in the interest of brainstorming I figured I'd throw it your way. I watched the clip and read the article, and I think you are already doing much of what this guy suggests for bringing about more views, but it might be worth checking out. I've not been a huge social media user up til this point, but seconding the previous permie, I know I can do a better job of sharing a video when it's posted.

http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/5-ways-your-old-youtube-videos-can-triple-their-visibility/
 
Gravity is a harsh mistress. But this tiny ad is pretty easy to deal with:
The Earth Sheltered Solar Greenhouse Book by Mike Oehler - digital download
https://permies.com/wiki/23444/digital-market/digital-market/Earth-Sheltered-Solar-Greenhouse-Book
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