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Rules of Making Successful YouTube How-To Videos

Rules of Making Successful YouTube How-To Videos

WRITTEN BY : Paul Keane

How-to videos are extremely popular now. Before doing anything new, every Internet user is likely to search for a video explaining the process. The share of requests connected with “how to” increases every year.


Video tutorials are a great way to build the brand awareness and offer the value to the audience. Today we’ll dive into the rules for creating successful how-to videos for a YouTube channel.



Ideas for video content


Creating a video, including a tutorial, starts with choosing the right topic. There is an endless number of ideas for how-to videos. However, choose only the areas you’re very good at. You must be an expert in the field you are going to cover. The audience feels it.



Know your target audience


The second step is to find the audience that will follow you and watch your how-to video. To do this, you must properly optimize your videos. To be found by your potential subscribers, you must describe your videos correctly.


Come up with catchy attractive names and descriptions to make people want to watch your video. Choose titles, subheadings, and tags that your viewers can use to find you.



Write the script


Your video should catch and attract the viewer from the first minute, so before you start shooting, write a good script.


Try to get through the whole process and write down step-by-step instructions. Think like a viewer – while watching your video (or after it) one should be able to repeat the process.


After writing down the script make a storyboard to get a clear idea what the shots of each step should be. This will help you create a detailed and consistent video that will be useful for the viewers.


Write a script for the video



 Choose the format


Depending on what your video is about, you can make it many different ways.


The simplest type of a how-to video is when a person demonstrates or tells how to do something, for example, a make-up tutorial. This video can be shot alone, with just a camera on a tripod.


YouTube webinar



Plenty of how-to videos show DIY projects – drawing, handmade, repairing, and many others.


Such videos usually don’t show the “host”, the focus is on the process. The video is usually shot in "overhead style", so the viewer can only see the desktop.



A calligraphy how-to video



For a software tutorial, the best format is screen recording. You don’t even need a camera! Just choose an appropriate program, record the process of your work, and lay a voiceover.


Use this software, for example, OBS Studio for Windows, DU Recorder for Android, and the function "Record screen" for the iOS platform 11. On Mac OS screen recording is possible with QuickTimePlayer. 


To make the video shorter and not boring, use hyper-lapse – speed up a long, repetitious part to get the viewer directly to the result. Add captions to highlight the key moments and put subtitles to make your video watchable without a sound.



How to create cartoon animation - AE tutorial



Some difficult or abstract subjects, which you can’t shoot, may be explained with an animated video.


Such videos usually attract the attention and easily go viral. Make sure to make a good voiceover and add the right background music.



Lighting, stabilization, sound


When you start shooting video, make sure that the room is well lit.


It is good to have several light sources in the room: from three to eight devices. Make sure that the light falls evenly on the subject.


Ring light for vlog



The cleaner and lighter the image is, the more attention it attracts. The same goes for sound quality.


Will your video come with music, or there will be a voiceover? Think about it in advance.

If the sound is bad, the audience will not watch until the end of your video. Therefore, purchase high-quality microphones. Most modern cameras have built-in microphones, which is a big plus.


Stabilize the image with a tripod. For shooting general plans use GoPro.



Tripod for vlog shooting



Try to shoot frames at different sizes, and then use a video editor to create a diverse video. Change the angles to make your video more impressive and dynamic.



Communication with the audience


The longer the video lasts, the less effect it has. A duration of five to ten minutes will be enough to keep the audience’s attention and bring the necessary information. A how-to video should be useful and meaty.


Speak as loud and clear as you can, pronouncing every word so you can be heard and understood easily. Duplicate your words with text or subtitles. Keep in mind that videos are often watched on mute, so make sure you can deliver your message and keep the viewer without sound.


When you edit a video, carefully select the shots. Include the most significant, spectacular and interesting moments in the video.


No matter what your video is about, make it “human”. Add humor and sincerity, think of your audience’s difficulties and needs, and give the easiest answer.



Follow these simple rules to create a professional and effective how-to video.