Are you looking for a way to make money with your blog?
Have you thought about making video tutorials?
Did you know that you can create free video tutorials that can make you money?
In this post, I will show you the exact steps I take to accomplish this.
My Best-Performing Tutorials
I had an interesting idea two years ago. Affiliate marketing is something I’ve been doing since 2008.
But I wanted to take it to the next level.
Yes, it’s nice to have a bunch of smaller commissions coming from multiple directions. But what if I were to go deeper with fewer products/services?
What if I created a bunch of tutorials for one specific company and go all in?
What was the result?
In the last 6 months, they’ve sent me a minimum of $1,083.11 and a maximum of $1,738.05 in affiliate commissions each month.
This has shown me the power of creating video tutorials to increase your blogging income.
I’ve done an episode on how to create resource centers before, but I wanted to go more in depth in this post on everything that goes into creating free video tutorials that make money.
So how do you do this well? Continue reading…
Ask These Preliminary Questions
There are a few questions you should ask yourself before creating one video for the purpose of making money.
If you’ve been following me for a while, some of these questions will be no surprise to you.
Question 1: Who is your target audience?
This is such an important question to ask with every piece of content you create. It’s even important to ask before you start a blog.
Understanding who your target audience is will help you determine the best content to create for them.
In my example, my target audience consists of people who are interested in building a business with a blog. They want to take their passion and turn it into a business.
They have knowledge to share with the world and know that that by doing so, they will make the world a better place.
You should know that from my tagline: Changing the world one blog at a time.
Question 2: What are their goals?
What exactly is your target audience trying to accomplish? Are they trying to build a business with a blog?
Are they trying to pass their biology class? Are they trying to find a work-life balance?
Understanding what their goals are will help you determine how to best help them.
Question 3: What tools and resources will they need to help them accomplish their goals?
To accomplish any goal in life, you will need certain tools and resources. This is the same for the people who come to your blog.
What will they need?
In my case, I know that my audience will need to get a domain name and hosting account. They will need to install WordPress. They will need an email marketing service. The list goes on and on.
Knowing this will give me an understanding of what video tutorials I can make to help them.
Question 4: Do those tools and resources have affiliate programs?
If you’re creating free video tutorials in order to make money, you will have to promote something that makes you money. Affiliate programs are great for this.
Make sure you are able to sign up as an affiliate. If the company you are thinking about promoting doesn’t have an affiliate program, reach out to them and see if they are willing to do something special for you (but this will most likely only work if you have a decent sized audience).
Planning Your Video Tutorials
It’s time to get to planning out your free video tutorials. It’s important to plan because you are able to think about the big picture and create tutorials that accomplish your goal – to make money. Here are my thoughts on how to do this:
Choose one tool to start
It would be great to have a wide range of video tutorials on many topics. However, in order to have the biggest effect (and greatest income), I highly recommend that you FOCUS on one tool.
If you’re just getting started, I highly recommend for you to choose something with a strong affiliate program. How do you choose?
Start by looking at what you use to accomplish what your audience is trying to accomplish. If it has been useful to you, it will probably be useful to your audience as well.
Ask: What will they need to know to use that tool?
In order for them to use the tool, they will need to know how to use it. I know – that was redundant.
But I said it that way because I want you to think about the things that you think are obvious. Assume that they don’t know ANYTHING.
Ask: What questions will they have when using the tool?
This sounds like like I’m repeating the previous question. However, I’m not. The first question deals with the “how to”. This question deals with the “what is” or “why”.
When doing the “how to”, they will have questions. If you can answer those questions, they will be more likely to take the action you want them to take.
Create an outline of all the necessary videos
This is a step many tutorial makers omit, and it is usually very obvious when that’s the case.
I’ve seen so many tutorial videos where the creator figured something out during the tutorial. In fact, I’ve probably done a few of those.
But I’ve come to realize that proper planning can really help your content stand out from the crowd.
There are a few different choices for the types of video you can create:
- Screen recording: With this type of video, you are recording your screen and guiding the viewer through how to perform certain actions. For example, I might be showing how to install WordPress. Some of the options for programs you can use are Screenflow (Mac only),Camtasia (Mac or PC) and Camstudio (PC only, Free).
- You on camera: This is where you are in front of a camera showing them how to do a specific task. Some options are using your smartphone, a camcorder or even a DSLR. Once you’ve recorded your videos, you need to edit and publish your videos. The program I use for editing is Adobe Premiere (Mac or PC), but some free options are iMovie (Mac only) and Windows Movie Maker (PC only).
- Slide Show: Many of the video tutorials I’ve created are done with a screen recording of a slide presentation. This works very well for teaching, as long as your slides are well done. Software options for creating slides are Keynote (Mac only), Microsoft Word (Mac or PC) and Google Slides (Mac or PC, browser-based).
- A Combination: Lastly, you can choose to do a combination of slides, recording your screen and you on camera.
This is the structure that I’ve found works very well for creating video tutorials:
- First you tell them what you’re going to tell them. This is where I usually say something like “in this video, I’m going to show you how to . . . “
- Then you tell (show) them. This is where you guide them through the steps of the process you are teaching.
- Then you tell them what you told (showed) them. This is where you review what has been taught. This really helps to solidify that they learned what they were supposed to learn.
Create a Pretty Link for the Affiliate Program
This is a very simple step that makes your affiliate links easier to remember. My affiliate link for HostGator hosting is
Trying to remember that can be a huge task. However, you can easily remember. The Pretty Link plugin allows you to easily create these links.
Creating Your Videos
Now that you planned out the content that will go into your videos, it’s time to create your videos. There are three steps in this process:
- Record the videos. We already went through the different types of videos you can create. The number of tutorials will vary depending on the nature of the tutorial you are creating. If it’s a very simple tool, it might be just one video. However, it can be a set of tutorials for one tool. Start creating.
- Edit the videos. There is so much value that can be added to your tutorials with some quality editing. You can highlight certain features, add text to make your content easier to follow and even remove any mistakes to make your videos tighter.
- Export the videos. Before you can upload the videos, you will need to export them from your editing format into a format that’s easy to upload to a video streaming platform like YouTube.
Publishing your Videos
Your videos are recorded, edited and exported. It’s time to publish them. Here’s the process I recommend for doing that:
Upload your Videos to YouTube
YouTube is the second most popular search engine on the internet. People go directly to YouTube to search for “How to” content. Not putting your tutorials on YouTube is doing yourself a disservice.
When uploading your videos to YouTube, there are a few things to keep in mind to give you the biggest bang for your buck:
- Use clear titles and descriptions. Let people know exactly what they will find in the content of your videos. This helps your viewing audience as well as optimizes your videos for YouTube’s amazing search engine.
- Create a custom thumbnail for each video. One of the things that increases the chances that people will click through to watch your videos is how compelling your thumbnail is. Create something unique for each video that stands out.
- Use clickable annotations. When you mention the resource you are promoting, you want to make it as easy as possible for people to visit the site via your affiliate link. By using clickable annotations, the viewer can simply click on a section of your video to get to the product or service you are promoting.
- Use YouTube cards. The problem with annotations is that they only work on desktop browsers and not on mobile devices. That’s where YouTube cards come in. They show up ever so slightly on mobile devices in a way that’s clickable.
Blog Option One: Add individual videos to individual posts
This is what I refer to as a resource center. Creating individual posts for each tutorial has multiple benefits:
- You have multiple posts that can be optimized for the search engines, ultimately increasing your chances of being ranked in the search engines for multiple keyword phrases.
- You are able to include multiple calls to actions throughout your content. You can include calls to action in each of the videos as well in the post for each video.
- You have multiple posts to promote for different purposes.
When creating a resource center with multiple posts, the rules for titles and descriptions are similar to posting on YouTube. Make sure to be clear about the content (and value) in each tutorial.
Lastly, when adding posts to your blog, it’s a good idea to include as much relevant written content as possible. Remember – Google can’t index the words you say in your videos. It relies on the written content you provide.
Blog Option Two: Add videos to one comprehensive post
The benefit of adding your videos to one post is that you are able to create a really epic post. Epic posts are usually seen as posts with more value (both by your audience and the search engines).
Also, you can combine all of your promotional efforts into one post. That can simplify the process significantly.
The downside is that you will probably rank for fewer search phrases in Google (and other search engines).
Interlink all of the posts
This works very well if you’re creating multiple posts. You want your audience to be able to easily move from one post to the next. There are two ways to accomplish this:
- Use a custom sidebar plugin. By doing this, you are able to customize the sidebar that appears on all of the tutorial pages. You can add links to all of the tutorials in a series.
- Within the content of each post. Because you are posting written content in each post, you’re able to naturally link from one post to the next.
Promoting Your Video Tutorials
Woohoo, you have your awesome tutorials created, edited and published. It’s time to get the word out. Here are some ways of doing that:
Send to your email list
This should be the first thing that comes to mind. Your email list is the most targeted audience you have. As soon as your tutorials go live, let them know about it.
Promote your Tutorials on your blog
This is another natural way of promoting your content. You spent all this time creating awesome tutorials. Use your blog’s features to help you promote them. You can promote your tutorials in your navigation or sidebar. However, only do this if it makes sense for you audience.
Promote your tutorials on social media
Once your tutorials go live, share them on all of the social networks you use to market your blog. Your followers need to see the awesomeness you just created.
In addition to this, you can add them to your queue for ongoing social media promotion.
Reach out to the companies
When I published my GetResponse resource center, I tweeted about it to GetResponse. The result – the shared it with their audience, brought me on to do webinars for them, hired me as a consultant, and work with me closely to make their product better.
Don’t underestimate what can happen as a result of reaching out to companies and showing them the high-quality tutorials you created to promote them. Every company loves to be promoted.
Reach out to your network
Do you know other bloggers whose audiences would benefit substantially from your tutorials? Share it with them.
This works very well if you’ve established relationships with these bloggers in the past. If you haven’t already started doing this, start now 🙂
Have you created tutorials?
Wow, that was a lot of content. I will end with a question for you. Have you created video tutorials to promote affiliate products? If so, leave a link in the comments area below.
- GetResponse Resource center – I created this as a resource for GetResponse subscribers
- How To Create Resource Centers That Increase Your Income – a post on how to create resource centers
- Screen Recording Apps:
- Slide Presentation software:
- Pretty Link Plugin – a useful plugin for easily creating shorter links.
- YouTube – video streaming platform
- Customer Sidebar plugin – allows for one to customize the sidebar that appears on all of the tutorial pages