My video-blog strategy

Over the last several months, I’ve documented much of my work via video. Most of these videos get archived in the cloud in case I need to refer to them.

Creating videos is now essential to my mapping and learning process. Videos help clarify my thinking as I reflect on how I perform tasks.

In September of 2017, I made videos about using QGIS. By December, I had come up with a better process. Videos played a big part in this, and they also help me share what I know with others.

Does anyone really want to watch a 30–45 minute video? Well, yes. Some students in my class wanted to watch an unedited video so that they wouldn’t miss a step.

And does it make sense that I’ve created a video about my blogging process? Definitely. Verbalizing a process helps me own it and reminds me of details that I might not want to write about.

Creating videos takes my focus away from the end goal, which may be weeks or months away, and helps focus on what I’m doing now.

Here’s the checklist (copied from my Evernote file)

  1. Make videos using Camtasia to work through process
  2. Create a draft post folder
  3. Compile notes for post in Evernote
  4. Add images to draft folder
  5. Write post in Byword
  6. Add images to draft post folder
  7. Add any reference materials to draft post folder in zipped format
  8. Drag images to Byword, and title
  9. Review draft in Hemingway App and edit in Byword
  10. Print hard copy draft for review
  11. Save Byword to
    • Add Tags
    • Add Category called Mapping Notes
    • Make Private
    • Set Name
  12. View online
  13. Create video
    • Record
    • Edit
    • Annotate with captions
    • Create video script
  14. Create a shorter video that is more polished.
    • Record
    • Edit
    • Annotate
    • Add Intro/Outro
    • Save MP4 to dropbox
    • Set up Vimeo
    • Add video to post
  15. Save again to
  16. Make sure links work and that I’ve credited sources I learned from or that inspired me
  17. Review page links.
  18. Set Publish date
  19. Make Public
  20. Send an email about the new post

Here’s how I can set priorities

I want posts to go out once a week. Sometimes I will be making posts about concepts I know a lot about. Other times I’ll be working through my own learning challenges. It’s likely that I may create multiple posts only to find them irrelevant to me or my audience.

Topics need to relate to one of these categories:
* My cartography projects
* Learning something new
* Admin needs
* Problems students in my class face
* Coding and systems management

So, if I create 4 video/blog posts, I can still choose to select one that I think will be meaningful.

Before starting on a post

If I’m posting about a problem, then I’ve probably taken steps to define, research and solve the problem.  I should document resources and sources of inspirations.

Final thought

Having a blog doesn’t work without a strategy and people who I can learn from. I want to give a shout out to Nathan Barry, who encouraged me to teach what I know.  I integrated his service, ConvertKit, into my Cartography Class at Temple, and my students appreciated this.   I’ve learned a lot from Pat Flynn too.  Ironically, I met them both the same week a couple of years ago.