Amy's Authority Video Formula
Okay, so this is something I call the Authority Video Formula. I talk about it in the book, but really the visual helps you get it figured out. Because if anything, you could just take a photo of this or print it out and hang it right there next to your camera and have it guide you through the process. And so I'm gonna walk through each and every one of these, and I'll take it section by section 'cause there's a whole lot goin' on here. But, let's start from the very beginning, this is meant to be the timeline of your video. Let's say it's an Instagram story. This might be lots of little stories within it, but what's the starting point and what's the ending point? That's what this is, does that make sense? This timeline here, okay, great. So let's go to the first item on this timeline, and that is Subject First. So, someone's watching your video, right? They click play, and they need to relate very quickly. So, most of the time, the subject of your video, much like with Jody's example,...
it's gonna be a person on camera, which is great, because that is the subject of this video. And the person watching this video has a face, and so seeing a face is very relatable, right off the bat, right? And we want that to happen (snapping). So Subject First. Don't waste any time getting that face or the main subject of the video in frame upon pressing play because what that does is it says you're not messin' around, you're gettin' to the point, and you are ready to set this thing in motion. And I'll talk about what the alternatives of this would be in these coming points, but really, do not delay that relatability. Introducing that face or person in the first seconds of the video is extremely important. It may seem like, if we add some things to the beginning, it'll feel better when our face finally shows up, but it's actually taking away from the experience of the viewer. Does that make sense? Cool, next piece, Loyalty Treatment. So with Loyalty Treatment, this one throws people for a loop 'cause I really like the name, but you've gotta really wrap your mind around what it means. The zhushi way of saying it is, treat every viewer like they are the most loyal viewer you've ever had. They've been watching your videos for years, even if today is day one, right? Loyal, all of them, because if you do that, they will soon become very, very loyal to you. And what does that actually really mean? Well, it's the anti-elevator pitch. We kinda get into this uncomfortable space when we start filming of, "Okay, well, what's the first thing I'm gonna say? "Well, I guess we should say why I'm here and why I matter." And what were the key words there, I. This isn't about you, is it? It's about them. So we don't need all of that right off the bat. We really need them to feel like they've been watching you for years so that they will want to. And we want to avoid that awkward introduction. When you do that, you're essentially calling action. Does anyone remember when Yarbi talked about calling action? Which point number was it?
At the end. 3A (laughing) it was like 3, right, it was the end. If you deliver on what you've said you're going to in the title of this story, in the headline of the YouTube video, in the bio of your Instagram profile, wherever it is you're taking place, if you deliver on that, they will want to know who you are, I promise. But do not set it up that way 'cause remember that first example of the video? And it was like "mmmmm, hi, welcome, this is me, ahhh." That's not the way to set the tone. And we just have a natural instinct to go there because we don't know what else to say so we just start saying things that we know, like who we are and what our website is. 'Cause we pretty much got that part nailed down. Everything else is up for grabs. Don't do that. Start with what they care about. Does that make sense, Loyalty Treatment. Think about Charlotte or Alice or Lacey and why they're loyal. Not because you showed up to your fiftieth coffee appointment, and reintroduced yourself, and shook their hand, and told them your website, right? That would be weird. Okay, Loyalty Treatment. The reason for these two pieces here at the begininng is the Eight Second Rule. The Eight Second Rule is this, the average amount of time that a viewer decides to stay or leave a YouTube video. And it is definitely less generous on Facebook and everywhere else (laughing). The one thing I'm really not liking about the way this Instagram update is that it says how many people swiped away from your story. And it's like, "Oh, that hurt." That's like they biggest thing that's, you could've just psychoanalyzed what your audience retention number is. But it's literally telling you this many people don't care about your story anymore. And so they didn't get to these last pieces. It's great for measuring but not fun. Eight seconds on YouTube. They press play. And guess what happens on YouTube when they press play? Audio and video, novel, right? A lot of social networks it's just video, and you can't hear anything. So, with this being the amount of time that they're deciding to stay or leave, what are you doing to keep them there? Subject first, bring 'em in. "Hey, good to see you again. "Here's what's happening, let's go." We're not walking through that elevator pitch, and we're certainly not going to do other things to distract them. So, we also need to keep in mind that, "Are they going to be excited or bored?" What I liked that Yarbi mentioned was the over tell. You will know when you've done this, especially if you edit your own content. Because if you fall asleep while you're editing your video, (audience chuckling) someone else fell asleep sooner after you posted it. Does that make sense? The over tell is a really good example of if you're bored so is everyone else. Take yourself out of the equation and say, "What did we do to keep this interesting?" So, a lot of this speed at the beginning is going to be helpful with that. I'll pause on this for just a second if anyone wanted to take a picture. But, Minimal Branding is the next piece because what we have a thought process around in terms of making the beginning feel a little bit easier to ease ourselves into is getting that title sequence made. Like I'm gonna send my logo out to this company, and they're gonna like put it in this fun montage. And I'll have like my own theme song, and like my headshot will be like floating on a beach somewhere or something. It'll be great. But that is too much. I don't know if anyone watches TV in here. Other than like House of Cards and Game of Thrones, the opening title sequence for TV even is significantly less. You watch a lot of drama television now, and the credits are rolling while you're watching the episode for like 20 minutes. But you're so enraptured in the story, that you're not paying attention to that. But they're getting their credits in, right? But they're not forcing you to watch this long branding sequence. That's what we're trying to talk about here. If you're gonna do it, and for probably 300 episodes of Savvy Sexual Social, I did have a branding sequence. But it was the name of the show and the subject for the day and like three bells. It couldn't have been longer than three seconds. So, minimal is what I recommend. If you wanna do like a little, "Yep, you're back. "This is what it looks like" kind of sequence, subject first and then do that. Or, take that out completely and have a lower third with your website. Wear a T-shirt with your logo. I mean there's so many ways to integrate branding and all of it. Because that's what we're trying to do with things anyway is add context to who we are and what we do and why it matters. 'Cause if you're delivering on all of this, they'll be paying attention to those things. They'll wanna know what the next step is. And we'll get to that. So, minimal, minimal branding. Avoid the typical title sequences that interfere with the Eight Second Rule. And integrate that branding within the content instead of commercially. Does that make sense?
Okay, great. So, this next piece has a lot to do with where Yarbi just set the stage storytelling, but most importantly, what did you say you were gonna do? Why are people going to end up here? With YouTube content, they have made a decision to watch the video for some reason. So, we need to be generous with that content. Storytelling is a great way to keep them retained for the duration of the video, but being generous with what the content is throughout is extremely important. Deliver on your promise. There was a time when you could upload videos to YouTube and say that it was the Justin Bieber leak tape and people would click on it. And you'd get lots of views, and they'd be so disappointed and leave. Now, we have algorithms in place that tell the platforms that you didn't do your job. So, deliver on your promise. At the beginning, pacing is gonna be helpful for that, but once you get into it, really be generous with the content. You could say, "I don't wanna say that. "I'm educating my competitors." Or I wanna say a lot because I'm educating my customers. There's always gonna be somebody that takes your idea 'cause they're just ideas. But if you share what you know with the people who are actually going to take your brand to the next level, take you to that call to action and make it happen, that's what being generous means. So, do not hesitate to do that, and leverage those storytelling opportunities to make it more interesting. Stay focused but don't be afraid to share insider information. So, everything I just said about sharing that information, but you're not going to see a video from me called, "How to Use Social Media." 'Cause that would be really, really long, right? Unless I made it a joke or something. Then it might be a title. I guess I don't want to take the opportunity away from myself that I might. But it's not going to be a tutorial on the whole thing, right? Because that's a lot. That's a lot to take in. Someone who's actually looking for that information is probably saying something more along the lines of, "How to Use Instagram for Business," "How to Use YouTube for Vlogging." It's more specific so the focus is important. The generosity is allowing the insider and the expert in you to shine. Does that make sense? Do you see the difference there? Great, build trust because that is what you're doing with that information. Now, we're coming to the end of this video, point number three, factor that time in for the close. Was your video only two minutes of content? Then you're probably not going to spend another five minutes on the close. Why? Because if it's actually interesting, let's say it's very search-friendly content, and lots of people are gonna find it. You don't want to be listed as a seven minute video if you got the job done in just a couple. Because what if somebody else did it in a shorter amount of time and gets picked before you? That's really how I hacked my beginnings. There were lots of other people who were doing what I did. I did it faster. Today, long-form content matters in a big way because watch time is what these platforms want. But if nobody's watching your stuff, who cares how long it is? 18 minutes is gonna get you lots of watch time, but if it's only one person it's 18 minutes. If you have a five minute video, and you have a hundred people watch it, what's the difference, right? Does that make sense? So, what is this number here? Two to five minutes max is what I recommend (snapping) when you're just like, "We gotta show up, "we gotta be consistent, let's get the videos out, "let's get it done quickly, let's show people "I know what I'm talking about, "and I'm not just screwin' around." But factor that time in for the close because if the tutorial's gonna take you three minutes, alright, cool, 30 second call to action. What is it? Stay focused. Audible and Clear. I'm sorry, I like to skip around all this stuff 'cause they fit together so well. But factor that time in because you have to end the video with great intention. It's so easy to forget that this is your job at this point 'cause you did a great job dressing up what you do to be all fancy and storytellingy and all that kind of fun stuff, but you do have an intention here. Time your ending based on the length of that video, and, like I said, three minutes, 30 second close. The Audible and Clear piece here is very important because a lot of us will just put something onscreen and go, "Okay, great, we put the magic words onscreen. "They're probably gonna see it, "and they'll definitely do it if they see it," right? You have to say it. If they've gotten to this point in the video, oh my gosh, you're their thought leader. You're the expert. They've listened to you to this point. So, now they need to know what to do next. That's why you have to say it. It then feels a part of the content. So, even if it is like, "Here's a discount for my product" or it's just a close to the story, it's all gotta be said. It's all gotta be packaged together. So, if you don't say it and it's simply onscreen, that's not enough for action to be taken. So, keep that call to action there but very focused. You could say, "So glad you came. "Like this video, comment, subscribe, join my email list. "Also, I'll be down the street in five minutes "if you wanna meet up for a coffee or something. "And also, awww, I hope you come back again. "It would really mean a lot to me if you subscribe. "Oh, did I say that already, oh yeah." If you say too many things, what happens? They don't do anything. I don't know if you're familiar with graphic design, but there's a reason why websites are getting a lot more minimal. Because if you put too many things there, they don't do any of it. It's the same here, and you're gonna sound crazy 'cause you have to say it so you need to just pick a couple. Right, what are the main things they should do? First of all, it should be totally in the context of what you just taught but clear. What is the step? Say it, and make it clear. It could be as simple as, "Subscribe to this channel." It could be, "Go sign up for this email download." Whatever it is, be very clear about it. Too many things, nothing gets done. And again we talked about this Timestamp. Scope out the competition a little bit. Get a feel for what it looks like. They're not really you're competition. What I love about video is that we can all really work together and collaborate. That's what's so awesome about it. I know so many people that are creating on YouTube, and they do the exact same videos. Tech review is a great example of this 'cause I have friends in that arena. And they all get called by the same companies to review the same devices at the same events. So, they could be competition, but they work together. But you still wanna scope out what is the landscape look like. How do you fit into that equation so you would be fun to be a collaborative partner with? But that's gonna help you a lot with figuring out where you should be in Timestamp. Does that make sense? Very, very, very, very, very important, and reiterating an earlier point, the camera is one person, one. Do you know what's extremely unnatural? Talking to 30 people. This is weird, (audience laughing) okay, right? Or like thousands of people, right? That's weird so when you are talking to a camera thinking, "I'm talking to like 40 million people right now. "That not weird, yeah, I'm fine. "I'm just gonna share my message." You're not going to be thinking where you need to be. You're not going to be wrapping your mind around the content and customizing it for one person. You're thinking about 40 million or 30 or a thousand. That is not where you are. It's also highly unnatural to talk to no people. I still do it all the time. (audience laughing) I like to talk to myself, but right? If you sit there and you go, "No one's watching this. "This is ridiculous. "I hope nobody walks into this room right now "and sees me talking to myself 'cause this is awful." Not a good place to be. The camera is one person, not zero, not two, one. Make sense? That's literally the only part of the formula you would have to do to be better leaving here. Most people don't get to that point. TV anchors don't get to that point. They're just doing a job. They're not thinking about the person. They think about lots of people. They're thinking about ratings and quotas and everything. If you wanna change the game, if you wanna be better than everyone before you, do this really well. Everything else, again, totally gravy.
If you're content, my content, a lot of it is hands down. It's tutorials where they see my hands. Do you recommend at the beginning showing the face for a few seconds?
To say what you're about to do.
Then go into the hands. It's so much more work.
Okay. (audience laughing)
I know, I totally get it. I remember the first time I got this conversation. It was a manicurist, I believe. And, yes, that is the subject, but let me give you a good example. In beauty, that's beauty, I think yours is craft,
[Woman In Audience] Lettering.
I'm sorry, lettering. So, something very artsy and awesome. You wanna see the end result, right? So, what beauty does really well on YouTube is if you want someone to watch your video about your lettering, right? Or your fishtail braid, show the fishtail braid, right? And then I'll watch your tutorial. Because I wanna see that you actually know what you're doing first, right? That's why the thumbnail looks like that and that's why we see it at the beginning. You're, she films it at the end because she's gotta show you how to get there, but you clip back to that beginning piece after that of actually creating the effect. So, in your example, I'm so glad you asked that because the subject a lot of the time for people in this room will be a person. But if it is an end result, if it is a lettering example or it is a fishtail braid, or it's I made something out of clay, or it's a tech device that I'm reviewing, the face who walks us through this process needs to be there and so does the end result. Here's what we're doing, here's how we're gonna get there.