online education platform, and nearly three-quarters of respondents reported taking a YouTube education course over the past year.
Another benefit: There isn’t as much competition for nail techs to get noticed on YouTube as there is on Instagram, says Celina Rydén, Light Elegance international educator and ambassador, who has nearly 80,000 YouTube subscribers. “Being on YouTube forces you to invest in equipment and the time it takes to record and edit the videos,” she says. “That’s why your chances to be seen are vastly greater.” Ready to make your mark on YouTube? Here’s what you need to know to get started.
Invest in Equipment
“A lot of people think that if they just have the best, most expensive gear, then they’ll automatically get fantastic professional videos, but it doesn’t work like that,” cautions Rydén. “Learn the basics first and then upgrade your equipment.” Nail Career Education’s Suzie Moskal, better known simply as Suzie, who has nearly 2 million YouTube subscribers, agrees. “Phones have such excellent- quality cameras, you most certainly can shoot with a phone at first,” she says. Investing upfront in good- quality lighting, however, like a soft box, is a must. “Diffused light is your friend,” says Suzie. “It’s good for skin tone, too.”
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You should also consider purchasing a mount to securely hold your phone while recording. “It can greatly improve the overall quality of your videos, as well as enhance the viewer experience, which can in turn increase the number of views you receive,” says Aaron Roth, vice president of sales and marketing at Arkon Mounts, which offers the Live Streaming Essentials Bundle that includes a tripod phone mount, clip-on ring light and remote control. “Having your device mounted also means that your hands are free to create nail art rather than have to worry about the device during a live video demonstration.” Down the line, consider purchasing a small digital SLR camera and, eventually, a more expensive camera and a macro zoom lens, recommends Rydén.
Choose Your Topic
When deciding what technique to film, Rydén advises searching for nail education videos with the most views. “Then, create your own version of it, but make sure that it’s not copied; make it you,” she says. After you build an audience, determine what topics resonate with them most. “Listen to your audience,” says Suzie. “After all, they’re who you’re doing it for. Even if you have one video with one comment, that’s a good start.”
When you’re ready to shoot, make sure your workspace is tidy, the products you need are at hand and the background is uncluttered. “Always make sure to have clean equipment and containers, and if your own nails aren’t perfect, wear gloves,” recommends Rydén. Another tip: Don’t bother filming every step of your technique. “Cut out boring stuff like waiting for gel polish to cure,” says Suzie.
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Edit Your Footage
Rydén recommends Apple iMovie for basic editing; you can always upgrade later to Final Cut Pro if you need more features. Rydén keeps most of her videos 5 to 10 minutes long to hold viewers’ attention, but occasionally posts longer videos. Create shorter versions as well (60 seconds) to post on Instagram to encourage interaction and increase the reach, she advises.
Adding extras like music and voiceovers can give your videos a more sophisticated feel. Rydén sources music through a subscription to music library Epidemic Sound, and she uses a separate microphone for voiceovers. “You can definitely start with your iPhone headphones and the voice recorder app though,” she says. Finally, Rydén advises watermarking every video. “If you have a video on Instagram, your intention is to draw people over to your YouTube video, so the address needs to be clear and visible during the entire video,” she says.
Promote Your Video
There’s no point spending the time and money creating an education video if no one sees it. “Promote it everywhere—on your Instagram feed and stories, your Facebook business and personal pages, Facebook nail groups and a newsletter if you have one,” says Rydén. Another strategy: Utilize both popular hashtags (used more than 100,000 times) and niche hashtags (used less than 10,000 times). Above all, don’t be discouraged if your first video doesn’t immediately generate thousands of YouTube subscribers. “Everything I know when it comes to video work is self-taught,” reassures Rydén. “I’m still learning and developing my skills with every video I create.”
–by Lotus Abrams
This story first appeared in the May issue of Nailpro magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.
[Images: Courtesy of Arkon Mounts]