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What am I doing wrong? How can I get people interested?  RSS feed

 
Posts: 34
Location: St. Andrews West, Ontario, Canada (Zone 5b)
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Hi everyone,

Thanks again for welcoming me to the forums! It has been a real pleasure discovering this site and reading all the amazing stories that people post on here. I find it highly encouraging!
Now, on to the grass-fed meat of the matter 😉. I'm not sure if this is the best place to post this sort of topic or if it has already been discussed before. I searched briefly but didn't see anything related to this topic exactly, so here goes...

For the past couple years, I've been working really hard to establish a small permaculture farm for my family and I. You can read more about that on my bio if you're curious to know more. It should be noted that I'm not looking to change the world or anything like that (not yet anyway, I still have a lot to learn ;) ). I simply want to grow good, organic food for my family using ethical and regenerative farming and gardening principles where possible. My goal at first is to offset our grocery bills a bit, but I don't want to just stop there. I’m trying to turn it into a lifestyle that can support us with food and income well into our retirement. I would love for my kids and grand-kids to take over the farm some day. It's my legacy to them, so it's kind of a big deal! I'm quite passionate about permaculture and I now see it as fundamental to what I want to do. The problem is I can't seem to get anyone to take interest in anything I do. As a result, I've encountered a kind of motivational dilemma.



Let me clarify here again that I'm not an expert on any of this stuff nor do I expect to have a huge impact on any community. My work is more of a vlog than anything. But I do feel like what I've been doing is interesting and demonstrates a highly beneficial model for my social network. I basically just want to share what I'm doing with the people I know, not for praise, but rather to show that anyone can do what I’m doing, and they really should do it. After all, creations are most meaningful when shared with others. I learned that the hard way playing Minecraft for years, creating all sorts of epic cities and buildings. The problem was always the same: without a friend's encouragement or, at the very least, acknowledgment, it all seemed rather pointless. Somewhat akin to a Zen garden that gets cleared and sent back to the ages after hours of concentrated efforts. Maybe I just need to let go and accept my work’s impermanence. Although that seems to contradict the whole 'permanent' aspect of permaculture.



Anyway, again, I'm trying to be realistic about all this and tell myself not everyone will bite on these ideas. Before I started taking on these projects, I would have thought there would be more people like me in my immediate circle. Sadly, that is not the case. I'm not big on social media but I have almost 100 “friends” on Facebook, mostly close friends and family yet it’s anything I can do to get a single Like! Only 1 of my friends shows any interest in my posts and even he is inconsistent about it. I feel like I'm the only one reading other peoples’ posts and liking their pics when no one gives a crap about mine. :( They all seem more interested in ridiculous BS that doesn't matter in the greater scheme of things (celeb posts, memes, the latest fashion trends, re-posting everything under the sun basically). I feel like my work goes beyond that and is significantly more meaningful and impactful than the latest celeb tweet. YouTube is the same. Considering the state of the world and the impending food scarcity that will affect us all, it’s a wonder more people aren’t interested. I just don’t get it.



I realize that these things take time and I'm certain that some of you guys actively struggle with many of the same things. That's why I'm hoping that folks here have some helpful advice for me at this juncture of my little permaculture farm's evolution.

What do you think? Am I over-complicating this and overthinking it? Are there better ways to get people interested in what I'm doing and actually get them to participate in it somehow? Or should I just do this thing solo, forget what other people think and reevaluate my expectations? How can I get the support I need? Any and all advice in this matter is very much appreciated!



If anyone is interested in having a closer look at my projects and offering up some advice in that regard, check out my YouTube or hit me up on Facebook.

Many thanks and much love,

Matt Leger
Maple Grove Productions
 
pollinator
Posts: 10183
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People are very supportive here on permies, so post here!  If your goal is to grow food for your family, that is an admirable goal.  I'm not sure how to motivate family or others to take an active interest.  I don't think a single person I have mentioned my permaculture to has gone on to research it on their own.  My husband is supportive of my work, but does not independently study permaculture.  He helps me with some tasks, but the food-growing aspect is all my own project.  He is interested in wildlife management (Zone 4-5) but not participating in food growing.  He likes food eating!

Have you tried reaching out to any permies in your locale or region?  You might find more support there.  I was very inspired by a visit to a permaculture farm near us that we only found out about as it was closing.  We attended their last tour!  Even though it was closing and rather rudimentary, just getting to go to an actual permaculture location meant a great deal to me.  Have you considered giving tours of your farm?

 
pollinator
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Not sure that 4 months is enough time. I think of  the youtubes i have subscribed to. First they had to come up on my search.  Second,  i had to like them and their other content enough to continue. Learning how to change a lawnmower blade on a bad boy 42" zero turn is one and done. Searching how to force vomit a chicken, and their other offerings are homestead related, may cause me to subscribe, assuming their format appealed to me. So the more variety offered, the better chance i find you. Here are some searches i have done.

Canning (use YouTube for instructions on what pressure and how long)
Steamjuicer
Chicken vomit (forcing)
Feedplots for deer
Finishing cattle for slaughter
Tanning hides
Make a solar dehydrater
A boat from barrels
When is okra ripe?
Sealing a pond.
Stretch a fence
Make wine

I guess variety from the channel within my interest range is what i am looking for.
 
Posts: 26
Location: Western central Illinois
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Matt,
Your post has a lot to discuss, but I want to hit just a couple things while I'm on break at work.
First, I think what you are feeling is normal. Of those on my own friends lists of social media I have very few who would take a real interest in what I do in this regard. To get the feedback I think you are looking for you will need new friends, or more friends with similar interests. This is a great site to begin cultivating those interests.

The second thing is I wanted to hit on is your FB and YT impact. It's a marathon, not a sprint. Your videos are only 6 months old, and the oldest post I saw on FB was from July. I know other YT creators who worked at it HARD for years before they really started getting the view count. If you were 6 years into this and getting this kind of traffic it would be a different story. I only watched a couple minutes of a few of your videos, but I have a few suggestions that I think might help.
1) Get out from behind the camera. One of the channels I follow is NYCCNC. I met John and have talked with him periodically over the years. Great guy with a passion for machining and education. One of his older videos he talks about what he feels was the "turning point" for his channel taking off and it was when he got in front of the camera and let people get to know him and his story instead of being a voice narrating what he is looking at. If you don't have a tripod, get one. A good one. Talk to the camera like it's the person you are trying to convert.
2) Another take away from John at NYCCNC, get the microphone on the talent. The mic on most cameras is completely inadequate for quality audio in the level of videography it looks like you can produce. There are a lot of budget friendly options available from wired to wireless to shotgun style mic's.

It looks like you are off to a really great start. Don't get discouraged by a general lack of views. YouTube uses algorithms that are geared towards the sensational/click-bait titles. If people aren't finding your stuff right away give it time. The ones that want it will find it. I would liken social media impact to growing an apple tree or radishes. It takes a lot of work and can take years to see fruit, but it is worth it if you like apples and something that will bear fruit for years to come. If you want quick results like radishes, water regularly, and replant often. You will get shallow interest that doesn't continue to produce.

Just my thoughts, salt to taste.
 
pioneer
gardener
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In terms of creating a popular YouTube channel, there are two entirely separate jobs:

1. Creating content people will enjoy
2. Getting people to see that content (Marketing)

Number one feels like the hard work, but number two is the vast majority of the work in today's world. It used to be that you posted something to your timeline and your friends would see it. You'd create good stuff, people would see it, and the better your stuff, the more popular it got. Those days are long dead, shot in the head and left on the side of the road to rot. There's a tremendous set of skills you need to master to get people to see content now. Part of it is behavioral psychology (ex: choosing the right titles/thumbnails), part of it is algorithmic/platform awareness (ex: what titles/keywords will get you in the right recommended lists this week), part of it is old school marketing (timing, marketing channels, branding), part of it is networking (getting the right content creators to link to your stuff), part of it is straight up luck that YouTube/Facebook/Twitter believe your content is offensive enough to show in the timeline. It's going to take a really long time to figure this stuff out.

My point is — you're over here thinking no one cares, but the "people" who don't care are most likely YouTube/Facebook's algorithms. Content marketing in 2018 is a shitshow. Don't be so hard yourself.
 
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Years of experience have helped me generate a strict, but efficient social policy:

Either you compliment my garden or I deny your existence.

-

Some might say its a tad harsh, but it really helped me narrow down and focus on what/who I care about.

As far as engaging with YT (I believe FB is quite vacuous) I'd encourage you to post interesting/relevant comments on videos from other channels about gardening/permaculture.
But don't make it obvious and directly say 'Check out my channel'.
A lot of channels I follow are the result of "Interesting/intelligent comment, you seem cool, lets check out your profile, lets look at your video".

-

You can spend a lifetime being disappointed with others, instead I recommend making a strident effort to feel pleased with yourself.
If you are here, you almost certainly deserve it.
 
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Attracting interest is a matter of presentation and tactics. My plants are arranged in such a way as to showcase and highlight their forms against one another (i.e. my yard is beautiful in addition to being functional). When I host an event, that event takes place outside amongst my plants. I serve food made from the fruits and vegetables I have produced. Tea from my herbs. I've got statues and fountains and wind chimes and reading nooks. I'm even building an outdoor bath/hot spring which will drain away into my trees after each use. My little forest sucks people right in. They inevitably want to know how I do it (especially because like much of my community, I am dirt poor-- no pun intended). So I tell them.

If I were to actively work towards some kind of permaculture program in the community, a nice/catchy/attractive logo is a must. Perhaps I'd go around to local restaurants and make arrangements (inexpensive, seasonal, high quality produce in exchange for advertising). I could start a backyard farmer's guild on Facebook or some such so people could trade produce/dairy/etc. and tips. Another option is to provide garden services/consultations at a modest cost, should someone be interested in my gardening style (growing things is an art, after all, and I am first and foremost and artist). There's lots of different angles and avenues to success one could take.
 
Matt Leger
Posts: 34
Location: St. Andrews West, Ontario, Canada (Zone 5b)
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Thanks so much for replying, guys! I really appreciate your feedback! I'm still absorbing and digesting it all but I wanted to reply while it's still fresh.

@Tyler, It's somehow comforting to know that I'm not the only one experiencing a general lack of interest within their social circle. I suppose I should count myself lucky that I have a wife and 2 kids that are willing to help out most of the time. But like you, it's mainly my project and my responsibilities. Sounds like your hubby pulls his share in other areas though at least, so that's good. And who doesn't like the eating part, right? :) To answer your questions, yes, I have been to a few local events and I try to visit and support the local farmer's market when I can. I'm just not sure that my farm, or "business idea" if you want to call it that, is developed enough to really explain to people what I'm doing in order to get their support. Should I think of this more like a conventional business and print some business cards or something? I would LOVE to give tours at my farm, especially during maple syrup season.

@Wayne, Thanks so much for that feedback. You made me realize that thinking of things through the viewers perspective is not something I do often enough. I'm usually too caught up in trying to create a good production and ad-libbing, since I don't usually make scripts. Maybe I should, IDK. Your search history will help me fine tune my tags and considerations for future topics though and you bring up a really good point about variety. Many thanks!!

@Caleb, It is a lot, I realize that now lol so thanks a lot for taking the time to respond during your lunch! Really appreciate that man! New friends are indeed what I need, both in and outside of permaculture. So you're absolutely right there. The permies forums will definitely help I think. Your point about it being a marathon and not a sprint is also true. I think the reason my expectations are high is that I have few other channels on YouTube that have seen moderate success. My gaming channel, while not huge, has about 1200 subscribers, but it took me almost 10 years to get to that far. In my prime, I made about 10 bucks a month on Adsense. Now I'm down to $3. It's chump change and hardly worth all the work I put in. Not exactly motivating to want to replicate that, and if I'm honest, makes me really consider other avenues. You make some good points about spending more time in front of the camera and improving audio. I wasn't sure at first if I really wanted to spend money to improve the production quality since my views were low, but thinking in terms of capturing the best vlogs possible, I should probably do that anyway. In my latest video (Working with Hugelkultur [Part 3] Planting Fruit & Nut Trees) I do in fact spend a lot more time talking to the camera than I normally do. I also added some music, voice-overs and cutaways which I normally don't do. I guess it comes down to how much time I want to invest vs. what I'll get back out of it. In any case, thank you very much for your tips! I will seriously look at implementing those for my next video.
 
Matt Leger
Posts: 34
Location: St. Andrews West, Ontario, Canada (Zone 5b)
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@Kyle, Yikes! I find that both insightful and depressing. Moreso the latter... That could very well explain my lack of traction on YouTube but not on Facebook. I'm starting to think my social circle is just not composed of the type of people that are into permaculture or really anything I deeply care about, like other people have already said. Your point makes me rethink what my intentions are with all this and that's probably a good thing. Thank you!!

@Jondo, lol I love your social policy! I wish I had the back bone to stand by my convictions like you do. For some reason I always end up back on social media giving a f*** when I really shouldn't. Not about anything related to that anyway. Thanks for the pointer about commenting. That is something I could stand to do more. I do comment a lot but maybe not on the right type of videos, or those that are too old and not getting as many views anymore as the new stuff. I'll give that a shot! It certainly couldn't hurt. Somehow I knew I'd find voices of reason here. Thanks!

@Jincy, That is truly motivational! After a few more years working on it, I would be so thrilled if my Food Forest were a gathering place for my family and friends and could evoke such inspiration as yours does, where I could serve them delicious foods that I have grown myself. I don't know that that would encourage them to do it themselves but they would definitely be wooed by the novelty of it for a day, and that's a start I guess. Better than nothing! Your yard sounds absolutely amazing, Jincy! It seems easier to me to get people interested if you're doing urban permaculture than rural. With rural I find people think "I'll never be able to afford a place like that" yet my place is very modest. Or they just flat out don't want to live in the country, whereas urban food forests are a way easier sell. Everybody wants it because it's within their means. I could be wrong but that's my take on it. I like those angles and avenues you suggested. Once I get a bit more educated and confident, that would be the next logical step. Brilliant ideas! They almost seem obvious to me now but I easily lose perspective on these type of things.

Wow, you guys have given me a lot to think about. And that's most definitely a good thing. Keep 'em coming if you have more. I'm soaking it all in like a sponge right now. You all got me so excited I may go do some moonlit gardening and future planning tonight! :)
 
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I'm not going to shower with my opinion, you have enough of that above.  I will simply quote a movie, and it goes further back than that.

"Build it and they will come."

You're on your way.
 
Matt Leger
Posts: 34
Location: St. Andrews West, Ontario, Canada (Zone 5b)
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Ed Belote wrote:I'm not going to shower with my opinion, you have enough of that above.  I will simply quote a movie, and it goes further back than that.

"Build it and they will come."

You're on your way.



A classic quote for sure, Ed. Great movie! Thanks for the encouragement!
 
pioneer
garden master
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Tyler Ludens wrote:People are very supportive here on permies, so post here!  If your goal is to grow food for your family, that is an admirable goal.  I'm not sure how to motivate family or others to take an active interest.  I don't think a single person I have mentioned my permaculture to has gone on to research it on their own.  ... Have you considered giving tours of your farm? 



I agree with what Tyler says.  Post here on permies.  Tell us about the things that you are doing.  Post pictures as we like pictures of what people are doing.

I really like her farm tour idea.

Best wishes for your future.
 
Matt Leger
Posts: 34
Location: St. Andrews West, Ontario, Canada (Zone 5b)
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Anne Miller wrote:

Tyler Ludens wrote:People are very supportive here on permies, so post here!  If your goal is to grow food for your family, that is an admirable goal.  I'm not sure how to motivate family or others to take an active interest.  I don't think a single person I have mentioned my permaculture to has gone on to research it on their own.  ... Have you considered giving tours of your farm? 



I agree with what Tyler says.  Post here on permies.  Tell us about the things that you are doing.  Post pictures as we like pictures of what people are doing.

I really like her farm tour idea.

Best wishes for your future.



Hi Anne. Thanks for your reply! After the warm reception I received, I will definitely be posting here more. I love Tyler's suggestions too, I love all the suggestions made so far really and I plan to implement most, if not all of them, at some point.

Have a great day! :)
 
wayne fajkus
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Abc acres had a running thread here, making a post announcing every  new video with a link. That is serious marketing when you consider the number of people here. Keeping up with the thread by responding helps a lot.
 
gardener
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hau Matt, The others have given you great ideas to run with, marketing is key to becoming one of the online celebs, if that is what your aiming for.

Long ago I took the approach of, I will do my thing and if people ask, I will share my knowledge and views, if they like that, super, if they don't like that, it is their problem not mine.

To get your kids involved, you might find some science might be a good way to get them really interested.
I have grandchildren that love to look through the microscope and see all the things that live in soil and water and on leaves.
The love to watch me do soil tests too, why I have not one clue but hey if it turns them onto helping heal the earth mother who am I to deny them that fun.

I have a couple of friends that do youtube, it took them around one year to start getting a following.

Facebook is something I rarely go to, even for friends, the family uses it to stay up to date on each other, wolf takes care of most of that for us both.

Redhawk
 
Matt Leger
Posts: 34
Location: St. Andrews West, Ontario, Canada (Zone 5b)
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wayne fajkus wrote:Abc acres had a running thread here, making a post announcing every  new video with a link. That is serious marketing when you consider the number of people here. Keeping up with the thread by responding helps a lot.



I wasn't sure if that would be coinsidered spammy or not, but it looks like if it's done with taste, it's acceptable. I try to reply to every comment and every post I receive. The way I figure it, folks took the time out of their day to share their thoughts and the least I can do is respond or at least acknowledge them. And yes, that is killer marketing for sure! Thanks, Wayne! :)

Bryant RedHawk wrote:hau Matt, The others have given you great ideas to run with, marketing is key to becoming one of the online celebs, if that is what your aiming for.

Long ago I took the approach of, I will do my thing and if people ask, I will share my knowledge and views, if they like that, super, if they don't like that, it is their problem not mine.

To get your kids involved, you might find some science might be a good way to get them really interested.
I have grandchildren that love to look through the microscope and see all the things that live in soil and water and on leaves.
The love to watch me do soil tests too, why I have not one clue but hey if it turns them onto helping heal the earth mother who am I to deny them that fun.

I have a couple of friends that do youtube, it took them around one year to start getting a following.

Facebook is something I rarely go to, even for friends, the family uses it to stay up to date on each other, wolf takes care of most of that for us both.

Redhawk



To be honest, I don't usually have trouble getting my kids involved. They are pretty good about helping out, so long as I position it in a way where it's fun and not a chore. I really like the microscope idea and I've been wanting to get one for a while now. This may be just the push I needed to finally dish out the cash and buy it. So many applications for that type of research! Why not?

I like your approach. Re: YouTube, I suppose my expectations are a little out of wack. Like others mentioned, I haven't had this channel up for very long. If it takes a year or so to gather up a following, I'm perfectly OK with that, despite the fact that I'm a pretty impatient person in general. Good things come to those who wait, as they say. But honestly, for Facebook, it's so toxic that I think I'll just keep doing what I've been doing and not give a crap who supports me and who doesn't on there. The permies forums have clearly shown me that there are tons of like-minded people out there to share my experience with and to learn from. The likes of which I would NEVER find on FB. My efforts have been misplaced. Thanks Redhawk!

P.S. I have a video on my channel on the topic of Gaia (Mother Earth). Just FYI, it's a low quality video of me just walking around talking to the camera and the sound level sucks. But the topics are pretty heavy.  I'd be very curious to hear your thoughts on the subject if you have to time to check it out sometime. Cheers!
 
wayne fajkus
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Hugel part 3 is a great video about how to go to home depot and buy bagged manures, plastic tree supports, and spirally plastic covers. i have no idea why those trees needed any of them. Im not sure you gave reasonings for them.

I would challenge you to embrace the word you used (permaculture) and transition to it. I would love to see a year to year update of those trees you planted with the same number planted without the add ons. Something like a permaculture vs consumerism update. I would subscribe just to see the updates.

I also saw a couple of opportunities to create shorter clips to stand on their own that might draw traffic. How to preprep trees for planting (the bucket soaking). How to sift compost. Quick and easy informative stuff.

I hope this doesnt discourage you. I hope you stick around and see that good stuff can happen without the store bought crap encased in plastic. A vid of you doing a fieldtrip to a horsebarn to collect some manure might be worthwhile. Show how the natural leaf mold under your trees will make a great seed starting soil mix.
 
Matt Leger
Posts: 34
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wayne fajkus wrote:Hugel part 3 is a great video about how to go to home depot and buy bagged manures, plastic tree supports, and spirally plastic covers. i have no idea why those trees needed any of them. Im not sure you gave reasonings for them.

I would challenge you to embrace the word you used (permaculture) and transition to it. I would love to see a year to year update of those trees you planted with the same number planted without the add ons. Something like a permaculture vs consumerism update. I would subscribe just to see the updates.

I also saw a couple of opportunities to create shorter clips to stand on their own that might draw traffic. How to preprep trees for planting (the bucket soaking). How to sift compost. Quick and easy informative stuff.

I hope this doesnt discourage you. I hope you stick around and see that good stuff can happen without the store bought crap encased in plastic. A vid of you doing a fieldtrip to a horsebarn to collect some manure might be worthwhile. Show how the natural leaf mold under your trees will make a great seed starting soil mix.



You're absolutely right! I had many of the same thoughts when I first considered doing this stuff. This is our first time ever planting fruit and nut trees. The bagged manure was probably not necessary but we did not have enough in our compost bin to use exclusively. For our raised garden beds, we didn't use any compost and our plants were badly stunted so I wasn't about to take any chances with my trees. We spent a lot of money on them (over $500 on both orders, which is a lot for us!) so I wanted to give them the best possible chance to survive and even thrive. Then there's matter of time and trying to do this all while working a full time job. By the time I get off work, it's 6pm and the sun is already going down. So, regrettably, I had to cut corners in certain areas.

Don't get me wrong, I would much rather do it completely organic/natural with 100% permaculture methods but that just wasn't in the cards for us this year. Striving to find applications where we could though was feasible. I'm not trying to make excuses here. This is just the reality of the matter for us in our 2nd year on this property. As for the stakes and tree protectors, the stakes came highly recommended by the tree vendor and many videos I saw and the tree protectors came with the trees and were also highly recommended by the tree vendor to protect against rodents. I believe I mentioned that in the video but I did lose some footage when I ran out of hard drive space so it's possible it wasn't mentioned.

Challenge accepted! Next year I will try my best to do it all with 100% permaculture and we'll compare progress from year to year. So long as it doesn't hinder my trees in any way, I believe it would be an interesting experiment and worth the risks. You make all completely valid points.

I like your ideas for shorter "snippet" type videos. I'm adding that to my list of To-Do's. And no, I was not discouraged by your thoughts. I'm not easily offended or discouraged so no worries there. If anything I'm too headstrong and stubborn for my own good. So please don't worry about that. I'd rather someone be honest and upfront with me than worry about being offensive or how they come across.
 
wayne fajkus
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Cool and thanks.

Watching people dig and plant is one thing. Thinking about "what did I learn" is another more valuable thing. I want to learn. I wanted to know why you used those tree stakes

Amending soil in the hole is good or bad, probably edging to the bad side. You give them that happy home full of nutrients they dont want to leave in search of the deep moisture and minerals.

First year stunting is not abnormal. Look at what you did. You uprooted it from its home.  Its rebuilding its roots. Until the roots are good,  the top wont do much. I think you have a better chance of killing a tree from overfertilzing vs using none.

 
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Everyone and their brother is trying to create a "popular" youtube channel these days.  It is very difficult to do seeing as there is a lot of competition and the algorithms favor certain criteria (monetization supposedly being one of them).

Since I get a whole lot of information from various individuals on the interwebs (often only viewing their content once) I occasionally turn out videos as a way of repaying all that I have learned. For instance I often watch product review videos if I am thinking about buying something, and I occasionally make a product review video to put info out there for others that search for it. Not to be popular or grow a large following, but to add to the information base that I benefit from.

If you view it as a global information depository instead of a popularity contest (aka a cult of personality) you won't be disappointed by the lack of views, but you will occasionally be pleasantly surprised by the number of views.
 
pollinator
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I've heard a couple people now who have successful YT channels talk about search engine optimization (SEO) like making sure to use as many of the 500 tags per video as you can to improve search results as an example. Maybe you come up with a list that describes your channel in general, and then add some more that are specific to each video? I don't know though, I'm not familiar with content creation. Paul permits putting a link in your signature so the more you post, the more links to your YT channel which also improves your search result placement.
 
Matt Leger
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wayne fajkus wrote:Cool and thanks.

Watching people dig and plant is one thing. Thinking about "what did I learn" is another more valuable thing. I want to learn. I wanted to know why you used those tree stakes

Amending soil in the hole is good or bad, probably edging to the bad side. You give them that happy home full of nutrients they dont want to leave in search of the deep moisture and minerals.

First year stunting is not abnormal. Look at what you did. You uprooted it from its home.  Its rebuilding its roots. Until the roots are good,  the top wont do much. I think you have a better chance of killing a tree from overfertilzing vs using none.



I'm hesitant to teach anything because I'm still very much a noob. The whole blind leading the blind thing... That's why I keep stating in the videos that I'm not an expert and I'm still learning. It's more of a documentation process at this point than anything. But I'm aware my showman/teacher side often comes through anyway. I just can't help it! It's in my nature to want to help others, even if I don't know what I'm talking about. I see your point though - that learning is much more valuable than observing. I agree that learning really should be the primary goal. Observing is something most people can do on their own anyway. They don't need me for that.

To clarify, the only thing I added to the holes was a mycorrhizal solution. We did not put any compost in the holes. The tree vendor was clear not to do that or it would burn the roots. As I write this, I feel more and more like this should all be properly explained in a video. Good opportunity to put what I've learned here to practice! ;) Those are all great considerations you mentioned and all things I need to further consider moving forward.

The stunting we experience was only in our vegetables, and not all of them were affected. Towards mid season, we added compost as a dressing, beneath the wood chips, and the plants suddenly came alive! So it seems obvious to me that they were missing something, although some plants never recovered completely. I dread the thought of something similar happening to my trees, which is why I went a little crazy on the compost and erring on the side of caution.
 
Matt Leger
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Lucrecia Anderson wrote:Everyone and their brother is trying to create a "popular" youtube channel these days.  It is very difficult to do seeing as there is a lot of competition and the algorithms favor certain criteria (monetization supposedly being one of them).

Since I get a whole lot of information from various individuals on the interwebs (often only viewing their content once) I occasionally turn out videos as a way of repaying all that I have learned. For instance I often watch product review videos if I am thinking about buying something, and I occasionally make a product review video to put info out there for others that search for it. Not to be popular or grow a large following, but to add to the information base that I benefit from.

If you view it as a global information depository instead of a popularity contest (aka a cult of personality) you won't be disappointed by the lack of views, but you will occasionally be pleasantly surprised by the number of views.



I love your perspective on information, Lucrecia! I may very well adopt a similar approach. I don't really care how popular my channels are but I want to know that at least someone out there was entertained, or better yet educated, by one of my videos. A summary of what you have learned seems like a brilliant idea to me! Thanks for sharing that! :) I would be delighted to have even a small part in the global information depository. Also, I get a real kick out of watching my old videos, years later, and seeing how much I've grown. It find it highly encouraging! My biggest beef is not getting support from family and friends. Stupid FB BS again basically. It just pisses me off because they support such ridiculous things. I forget where I first read this and connected with it but this picture explains the idea well.



Mark Tudor wrote:I've heard a couple people now who have successful YT channels talk about search engine optimization (SEO) like making sure to use as many of the 500 tags per video as you can to improve search results as an example. Maybe you come up with a list that describes your channel in general, and then add some more that are specific to each video? I don't know though, I'm not familiar with content creation. Paul permits putting a link in your signature so the more you post, the more links to your YT channel which also improves your search result placement.



Believe it or not, I max out my tags on every video and my upload defaults contain all words that relate back to my channel. Things like hugelkultur, stacking functions, permaculture garden, food forest, just to name a few. The keywords I chose for my titles and descriptions could definitely stand to be optimized though. I don't know much about SEO either but I'm willing to learn. I'm willing to do anything it takes to be successful and maybe even some day be able to do this full time. There's a lot of competition out there but a lot of it is in the way you look at it, like Lucrecia said. But my primary goal will always be to provide a regenerative food source for my family. Everything else comes second.
 
Lucrecia Anderson
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Matt Leger wrote:Stupid FB BS again basically. It just pisses me off because they support such ridiculous things. I forget where I first read this and connected with it but this picture explains the idea well.



Consider closing your facebook account. It is supposed to be fun and entertaining, if it isn't do away with it and forget about it.  Seriously. Most of humanity isn't participating in that facebook silliness and we are happier as a result. :)

Life is short -- don't make yourself suffer unnecessarily.
 
Matt Leger
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Lucrecia Anderson wrote:

Matt Leger wrote:Consider closing your facebook account. It is supposed to be fun and entertaining, if it isn't do away with it and forget about it.  Seriously. Most of humanity isn't participating in that facebook silliness and we are happier as a result. :)

Life is short -- don't make yourself suffer unnecessarily.



Sound logic. Hard to argue with any of that. I've been down that road many times and foolishly return to it like the bad habit that it is. Like a lot of people, I rationalize it and tell mysekf that I'm on there to stay in contact with friends and family. But truth is, I'm always way more interested in what they have going on than they are in anything I do. Besides, if they really wanted to get a hold of me, they could pick up a phone! Nobody even does that anymore...

 
pollinator
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Hi Matt, I'm not sure if you have access to a social media site called "Nextdoor.com"  but if you do, you might be able to find more people local to you that are interested in what you are doing. My neighborhood is pretty active on that site, and it has been a valuable tool in combating stray/lost animals (a big cause for me). Basically, it is a site that is tailored to your locale, and only local people can see or respond to your posts. FB puts info out to anyone you are connected with, but if they aren't interested or don't comment or repost, those posts can get buried and lost. YouTube is almost worse, there is so much content on there, and until you get a following, it can be hard to find and promote. Good Luck!
 
Mark Tudor
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Matt Leger wrote:

Lucrecia Anderson wrote:Consider closing your facebook account. It is supposed to be fun and entertaining, if it isn't do away with it and forget about it.  Seriously. Most of humanity isn't participating in that facebook silliness and we are happier as a result. :)

Life is short -- don't make yourself suffer unnecessarily.



Sound logic. Hard to argue with any of that. I've been down that road many times and foolishly return to it like the bad habit that it is. Like a lot of people, I rationalize it and tell mysekf that I'm on there to stay in contact with friends and family. But truth is, I'm always way more interested in what they have going on than they are in anything I do. Besides, if they really wanted to get a hold of me, they could pick up a phone! Nobody even does that anymore...



I don't have the research references saved, but legit folks have studied the effects Facebook has on individual self worth and self esteem, and it has a negative relationship to the time spent. The more you browse FB, the more you see the hand-picked/filtered reality others present and compare it to your unfiltered life, and feel inadequate. I used to be more involved and then got rid of it for a few years, I now have an account so a few old friends can still reach me, as they keep losing my phone number and email address. I maybe log in every 2-3 months, and if I don't see a PM I'm done.
 
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Welcome aboard S.S Permie: an ark of ideas, knowledge and opinions!

Here are some comments that may assist you:

Coming from a generation that sought information from books, I'm not a fan of web videos and would rather seek gardening data via written web based sites.

I find most web videos contain 70% waffle nonsense, 15% trying to sell or promote something, and 15% resembling useful information. But, need to watch the whole thing to sieve the 'chaff from the grain' = amateur infomercials.

I've neither the time nor patience for that.

It's rare to find short, sharp, concise web videos that get straight to the point and use the STAR interview process: Situation, Task, Action, Result; and, have it rehearsed to cut down on useless and frustrating drivel.

If you want to reach out to a broader range of people, you may consider having video and written versions available on your site/s. Videos with subtitles would assist the hearing impaired community too.

In regards to Facebook peer pressure - if it brings you disappointment and sadness, give it the flick and put the time into something more productive that makes you happy. If the 'Facebook friends' don't contact you by other means after a while, then they're not real friends.

Not all friendships last a lifetime, people grow and change, people come and go. Only a select and rare few continue and they're the ones who accept and support you regardless. Like the saying: 'A friend will help you move, a real friend will help you move a body'!

To broaden your knowledge and meet likeminded people I suggest you search out local gardening/horticulture clubs = prospective new friends with common interests, huge hands-on local knowledge, guest speakers, social events and, in time, maybe interest in your blogs and marketing ideas. Be careful not to rush things, otherwise you could become very unpopular very quickly.

Good luck with it.
 
pollinator
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I agree with many other comments here. I don't like videos, I don't have the patience. I prefer blogs, that I can skim, and podcasts, that I listen to while doing other things, but even there, I'm looking for short, concise things that teach me something new. I have facebook, but use it only for following specific pages and groups, nothing personal. I don't find it a very good platform.

Good luck with your endeavors.
 
Lucrecia Anderson
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Matt one popular type of youtube channel that seems to grow subscribers fast is news based channels. They usually focus on specific topics such as politics or crime and then they turn out videos covering the hottest topics of that day/week.  Those channels tend to quickly grow a subscriber base since they keep their subscribers up to date on news stories that they might otherwise have missed.

Perhaps something like that geared towards homesteaders/organic gardeners would be popular. I could see that format turning out short videos 2-5 minutes in length covering interesting news stories such as organic food recalls, lawsuits against corporate farms or pesticide manufacturers etc...

If you do some research you could easily compile a list of sites and search terms that help you find interesting  topics to cover such as "Monsanto pays 78 million in Roundup Lawsuit" etc... Create an eye catching thumbnail template so all of your videos have a similar attractive look and use short titles that will spark curiosity about the story.

If you want to try that format I would suggest that your videos be short, to the point, and that they immediately jump right into the story content without a long rambling intro. Assume your subscriber base is very well read and they don't need to be told the obvious.
 
Matt Leger
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@Denise, thanks so much for your suggestions! I've never heard of that site but will be sure to check it out. Sounds like exactly what I've been looking for.

@Mark, I would not be the least bit surprised about that. I like your approach to it and I was doing something similar until recently when I got sucked back in. It most certainly skews your view of reality. It's poison, plain and simple. No other way to explain it. I may very well take yours and others' advice and check it much more infrequently or delete it altogether. I was, without a doubt, a happier person when I wasn't as heavy into social media, so you're on to something there.

@F, Thank you for the warm welcome!! :) "short, sharp, concise web videos" something to aim for! "Situation, Task, Action, Result" how it should be done. "cut down on useless and frustrating drivel" have you been watching my videos?! lol I'm guilty of that. Duly noted. Regarding FB, the only reason I haven't done that is because of the old fear of missing out (FOMO as the kids are calling it these days). Don't want to miss out on something a friend or family member posted. Could I live without seeing it? Yes. And honestly, it bothers me immensely that if I want to see pictures of my nieces and nephews, I'm forced to log on. I'd so much rather send an email or an online photo album or hell even a REAL photo album. Imagine that? The over 40 people I know are the only ones who still print photos anymore. It's sad. On one hand I want to keep up with the times but on the other my instinct is telling me that it's so artificial. I find it sickening a lot of the time. So why am I even on there? That's a good question and one that I'll have to really ponder again. I'm 99% sure I would not hear from anyone if I shut down my account. I barely hear from them as it is even on FB. 'A friend will help you move, a real friend will help you move a body'! Love that expression! I'm totally stealing that. Sound advice for finding local like-minded people too. Much appreciated!

@Stacy, I tend to favor written material too but my talent is in video editing and productions (hence the name of my farm ;) ) so I wouldn't want to drop it altogether, although I often feel like doing so. Short and concise seems to be a recurring theme here in the responses I've read. So whether it's on a blog or a video, I need to cut down on the time I spend blabbing and concentrate on the most valuable content I have to offer. Maybe even put my teacher hat on and help people learn things. And you're absolutely right - FB is a horrible platform for anything other than interacting with groups and pages. The personal side to it is disturbing and a little scary. OK, a lot scary!

@Lucrecia, that is a great idea! Great suggestions there too, especially with the shorter titles. Less is more! I keep forgetting that. Truncated titles actually give you less character space and do not look as appealing. You guys are making me realize what other people want to watch, and for the most part, it's the same as what I want to watch. That being short, concise, informative videos, saturated with useful information. So yeah, there's a mismatch there. Thanks for helping me see that!!

FYI, I gave you all shoutouts in my next video! Hope you don't mind. It's my way of saying thank you for all the well thought-out responses. You've all given me a lot to think about! I may take up meditation again as a result haha. I feel very fortunate to have found this site and that I took a chance in posting my worries and concerns. The time spent so far has paid off tenfold. All the best to you and good luck in your own projects!
 
pollinator
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Kyle Neath wrote:In terms of creating a popular YouTube channel, there are two entirely separate jobs:

1. Creating content people will enjoy
2. Getting people to see that content (Marketing)

Number one feels like the hard work, but number two is the vast majority of the work in today's world. It used to be that you posted something to your timeline and your friends would see it. You'd create good stuff, people would see it, and the better your stuff, the more popular it got. Those days are long dead, shot in the head and left on the side of the road to rot. There's a tremendous set of skills you need to master to get people to see content now. Part of it is behavioral psychology (ex: choosing the right titles/thumbnails), part of it is algorithmic/platform awareness (ex: what titles/keywords will get you in the right recommended lists this week), part of it is old school marketing (timing, marketing channels, branding), part of it is networking (getting the right content creators to link to your stuff), part of it is straight up luck that YouTube/Facebook/Twitter believe your content is offensive enough to show in the timeline. It's going to take a really long time to figure this stuff out.

My point is — you're over here thinking no one cares, but the "people" who don't care are most likely YouTube/Facebook's algorithms. Content marketing in 2018 is a shitshow. Don't be so hard yourself.



...
I think Kyle hit the nail on the head.  If you are doing a facebook ad for e-commerce or anything else you want to bring attention to online you have to do a ton of market research.  Once you find your market experiment with the copy, picture, videos and etc.  Build funnels give valuable content blah, blah, blah.  Marketing is so much of selling online it's hard to be a maker.    You have to drill down to find your audience.   People like shiny objects now.  There is so much information coming at us the only way to get results is to find the audience and then test, test, test your marketing and you products.
 
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Tyler Ludens wrote:I don't think a single person I have mentioned my permaculture to has gone on to research it on their own.  My husband is supportive of my work, but does not independently study permaculture.  He helps me with some tasks, but the food-growing aspect is all my own project.  He is interested in wildlife management (Zone 4-5) but not participating in food growing.


Tyler, I know that virtually all homesteads share many particulars besides food raising.  If you don't mind my asking, what aspects of homestead life does your husband take care of? 

And I'd offer that the relevance of this sub-topic is that Matt may find interest and support for some things via these other commonalities.  And once personal contacts are made, even non-Permie neighbors might gradually take an interest in what he's doing and why he's doing it.  Most of the friends I knew in my small-city & big-city days, before I moved onto land in this mountain valley, were only mildly interested (at most) in my new lifestyle and its details (basically uninterested in it at any real level of depth).  But I made new social contacts and established relationships of mutual aid and mutual learning/teaching.
 
pollinator
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Just a couple of thoughts.

1.  Social media is the cancer of our era.  For the little good that is does, it has infected an entire generation with heightened levels of anxiety, social incompetence, and depression.  Every longitudinal study out there shows that Facebook and all the other platforms are decreasing the capacity for empathy and action, critical thinking, and resilience.  So perhaps the number of hits or likes you get on social media is exactly the wrong measure of interest or social change.

2.  People will notice . . . eventually.  When they come over to your place and go home with a big basket of fruit, fresh eggs, and a jar of fresh honey, they'll think, "Hey -- he's onto something there."

3.  Who are you doing it for?  Enjoy your garden and your projects.  If someone else notices, great, but if not, you'll have a better lifestyle and more healthy future. 

4.  BUT . . . if you must persist in Youtubing your adventure . . .  go with much shorter videos -- perhaps 4 to 5 minutes max.  EDIT, edit, edit, edit, edit.  People don't want to sit there for 2 minutes watching you backfill a hole.

 
Matt Leger
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Q&A + Shoutouts

Thanks again to everyone who replied to this thread. Your input is truly invaluable to me!

Have a great week! :)

Matt

 
wayne fajkus
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You nailed it with "maybe the answer is nothing". That one sentence is always in the back of my head. It seems humans want to get more, more, more and all these new industries are created. Whether it's to make a car faster or more mpg, or growing hair, removing wrinkles. In any of these industries the net gain is minimal, possibly with negative effects. The gardening/permaculture arena is not exempt from promoting stuff that "dont do nothing".

I planted a dozen peach trees back in the 1980s then moved away a year or 2 later. It was family owned land. Noone cared for them. One Christmas over the last 10 years i heard a couple of nephews talking about eating peaches and the "peach pit wars" that ensued afterwards. That planting, without swales, fertlizers, yada, yada was the source of innocent childhood memories for them. Everyone has a similar story. It may be a 100 year old apple tree in a field. A fig tree next to a creek. The point is these trees survived and thrived. If you want bigger fruit, thin them when small. The only thing we need to do is keep them alive for 3 years. In my area that means water.

So the base is " nothing" and you think your way through the rest. Nature has proved to us over and over again that nothing is needed.

Theres deer- they'll girdle the trees, let me drive 3 stakes into the ground so the antlers dont get to the trunk.

Cows are in the pasture- let me fence the tree.

I get 4 months in summer without rain. I'll water it, but ill also mulch it so water will stay longer. Ill also keep the mulch off the trunk cause that could go bad.

All the other stuff is already there. If its not there, it will show up once chemicals, pesticides, herbicides are not used.



 
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I am the only one in my family who cares about agriculture in any form.

This is life.

As much as I would love to share this with those that I love, their interest begins and ends with a good meal. And if I am not there to provide them with berry pie from my own land then they will eat ice cream with chocolate syrup and enjoy it just as well.

My joy in my land has to be enough for me. And, when I die, my home and land will be sold because nobody will want to care for an acre of land, and my family will use their inheritance to fund their OWN dreams
 
pollinator
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Haven't been able to read all the comments just yet but here's my $.02

From an online entrepreneur/marketer's perspective regarding Youtube specifically, I've been learning a lot about how to grow my channel and one of the big keys is understanding WHERE your viewers will come from. 90% of the time, they will come from search. So, you need to have searchable topics and titles for your videos. Once channels grow pretty big, they can afford to have more generic "here's what I did today" or non-searchable titles because they already have an audience waiting for their next video, but for us newbies we have to focus on creating quality content that is easy to find in the search, preferably for keywords people are already searching for. I highly, highly suggest spending some time learning about how to grow your channel, how to get found on youtube, etc.

I haven't had a chance to watch any of your videos but just a quick glance shows me that you look like you have pretty interesting content but not much in terms of searchable titles. Like "how to build a hugelkultur bed" or "how to X" or whatnot. VidIQ, Tubebuddy, Nick Nimmin, and Video Influencers are all wonderful channels that will really help you learn that stuff. Tubebuddy is a plugin/tool you can use to identify what video ideas might be good for your channel and help you identify what keywords/phrases to use that might be easiest for your videos to rank in search for.

And yes I would say... you might want to adjust your expectations. The truth is, while many people might have a passing or observer-level interest in Permaculture, most people in any given person's immediate circle of influence (family/friends/etc) aren't going to have the same passion level. I hate to say it, but most people love the theories of it but aren't really as interested in putting in the work and participating. I could probably count on one hand the number of people in my immediate circle who have an interest in this stuff, and none of them on the same level as me.

So I personally don't expect my immediate circle of friends & family to be interested in my projects... I'll post about it if I put out a new video etc but I put my efforts for my youtube channel & Instagram (and this goes for my business as well which is totally unrelated) into reaching the people who are MOST likely to be interested in what I have to offer. Not necessarily people I actually know in real life.

- BUT -

as you go on, and time passes, you will find that you gravitate towards people (and they to you) who are likeminded. You'll meet people locally who are into the same stuff. I started a local homesteading group on FB for the same reason and was surprised at how many people who lived within 5-10 minutes of me and were into permaculture and I didn't even know them! And also, for some people, interest grows over time. It starts with a fresh tomato from your garden and the amazing flavor experience that is. And then they decide to try and grow some of their own. And then they might learn about deep mulch along the line. And it snowballs from there.

So just understand it is a marathon, not a sprint. Especially when it comes to Youtube... Youtube is a search engine, not social media, so any content you put out there will still be getting attention years down the road as long as it is relevant content that is optimized (titles, tags, etc) to be found in search. The key is to go where your "people" are. Don't try to convert people, just be there doing your thing and try to reach people who already have an interest in what you're doing.
 
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Matt Leger wrote: Are there better ways to get people interested in what I'm doing and actually get them to participate in it somehow? Or should I just do this thing solo, forget what other people think and reevaluate my expectations?



I do things for their own sake. While I'm happy to be helpful by sharing my experience with others, that's totally optional. 

 
pollinator
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The question is why you want to do this. First it is a lot of work and second the net is full of similar stories. If you want to gain local interest and get people to do permaculture in your local area then use facebook groups in your area and link to your videos. I myself dislike videos and prefer reading.
 
We should throw him a surprise party. It will cheer him up. We can use this tiny ad:
Food Forest Card Game - Game Forum
https://permies.com/t/61704/Food-Forest-Card-Game-Game
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