YOUTUBER LIFE

How To Become A Youtuber | Agile Tips, Tricks & Tools

One Year Anniversary of Agile State of Mind

Today I am celebrating the first anniversary of my channel! Join me in the celebration! Agile State of Mind is officially one! And today I will tell you a story of an Agile making-of the Agile State of Mind.

During the past year I was asked by many people how I do it, how did I start, what tools I use, etc. It’s one of these things where it’s hard to start and then it goes. And you can feel overwhelmed at the beginning. So I would like to ease this feeling for you and make things simple. I’ll share a lot of tips, tricks, and tools to start recording your first videos.

Agile Beginnings

I will tell you how you can start doing something new in an Agile way. It means doing it iteratively and incrementally and incorporating feedback in each step.

I will also briefly explain lean Startup, do a story mapping and let you know what tools I use to make the videos. It’s going to be dense today, so hold on tight and let’s start!

Toss Perfection

When you start thinking about recording videos you probably have this imagine in mind, right?

You may think go full in or don’t start at all. This couldn’t be further from reality. Well, unless you want to shoot movies. Maybe it is a good moment to add a disclamer: I am no professional camera operator or producer, and my tips come purely from my experinece with my channel and are based on trial and error.

I invented this 3-start approach:

  • Start small
  • Start simple
  • Just start

The best way to get rid of a fear is to face it. And that’s true for anything new you want to try.

Let’s Start — Story Mapping

Mike Cohn, the author of User Stories Applied, reiterates that the most important starting point is to have a meaningful objective. Mine was to create a YouTube channel to share my Agile knowledge in a concise and interesting way.

Once we have that covered, we are ready to start with a brainstorming of anything we might need to achieve the objective. We dump all ideas on post-its and put them on a wall one next to each other. For now the order is irrelevant.

Iteration 1 — Minimum Viable Product

This step serves to narrow our list down to maximize the work not done.

I had a lot of questions at the beginning. Will I even be able to talk in front of the camera and feel OK jsut talking to myself? Or will it make me uneasy? What about the edition, is it difficult and time-consuming?

So I decided to check what it will take to make the first video and validate if I can feel comfortable talking to myself. This is how my MVP came along.

From all the fancy things I wrote on the post-its I just collected these:

  • iPhone
  • Boxes and books to supoprt the iPhone
  • iMovie — to edit the video
  • Silent room
  • Topic

Above all the other postits I added “Next”, as they

Feedback Loop — Lean Startup

After each iteration we need to collect feedback as per The Lean Startup.

We have an idea, we put it into practice (build), then we collect feedback (measure), learn what to improve, and start over.

For the first iteration, I decided to give myself feedback. I noticed that sometimes I lacked words, English after all is not my native language — or didn’t know what to say next. I realized I needed some bullet points to follow and have a structure to the video.

So I trashed the first video and, enriched with the first experience, started writing a skeleton of a script, to have a list of points to follow.

Iteration 2 — Editing

I wrote a few bullet points and went to the room again to itearate on the first video. Then I opened the editing tool and started cutting the video into pieces, removing the unnecessary parts. And exported the video. The final effect was convincing enough to share with family and friends for feedback.

Again, there was no invemestment done whatsoever, well, apart from my time, because I wanted to get a proof that it makes sense for me to even consider becoming a “youtuber”.

There was some interesting feedback:

  • Decrease echo (reverb) — I decided to put some blankets on the floor and… best idea ever open all the cupboards
  • More light to my face
  • Text would help to get familiar with the concepts I’m explaining — used iMovie for that

Iteration 3 — Potentially Releaseable Increment

With the feedback I went in again and started iteration numebr three. This is how iterative and incremental delivery works. You start with a concept and iterate over it with each “release”.

You don’t always release your MVP to your customers. In Scrum we call it potentially releaseable increment — it means it is “done” and theoretically could be released but it is you or the product people in your company who decides what we want to show to our customers. I knew that I wasn’t there yet. I was only trying out new things and learning the tools.

After I recorded my third video I sent it again to friends and family and some more friends. I wanted feedback about the “production” of the video but also about the content: am I clear enough? Does it make sense what I say? Is it understandable for someone who is not a Scrum Pro?

I got more feedback and some help to upgrade from iMovie to Premiere Pro.

  • Tripod — little investment and a big help
  • Intro and Outro — for quality upgrade
  • Music, Sounds — presets
  • AirDrop — for sharing files between your iPhone and MacBook
  • Pick a name — create a YouTube channel
  • Script — full on script and as a side effect I started posting articles here on Medium

Iteration 4 — Getting To The Final Video

I got a lot of help with the Intro and Outro and getting to a point that the video got certain quality to it. iMovie is great for quick edits, especially cutting all the unnecesary parts but for the post-production I needed a more professional tool and Premiere Pro seemed to be perfect. It is very powerful and has many different possibilities but you can easily tame it and just use some basic stuff like I do.

All in all, for me, the must-haves are:

  • Tripod
  • Lights
  • Iphone + MacBook + AirDrop
  • iMovie for editing
  • Premiere Pro + Presets for effects

I would like to give thanks to everyone who helped and encouraged me on this new adventure. It feels great to learn new things and challenge yourself. Just for this I recommend to everyone starting something new!

Special thanks to everyone who watched, liked and subscribed to my channel! Thanks for keeping me going! I’d love to hear your stories of how you faced your fear and started doing something new! Please comment below!

Agile Coach and Content Creator at Agile State of Mind https://www.youtube.com/c/AgileStateofMind and RTE in OutSystems