This is going to be a shout out to the Video tutorial makers of the web… before I start just let me go ahead and say that I don’t want to hear any “if you think you can do it better, then make videos yourself” business in response to this post. I teach makeup for a living, what you see in these videos, I’m doing live every day.

Moving on… Something I’ve learned over the years is that teaching isn’t about showing off, it’s about making what you know understandable to your audience, and adapting your language, and your technique to fit those who are learning from you.

I recently had a client to whom I was teaching a “smokey eye” and we got to discussing youtube tutorials and one of her complaints, as a beginner, was that many videos move too quickly, use terms she’s not familiar with, and frustrate her more than teach her anything. After thinking about that some, I did start to notice that there are fewer videos tailored to teach the beginner.

I urge those of you who hope to be successful tutorial makers not to leave beginners out, beginners will be your bread and butter if you learn to include them, and when you do, be careful to adapt your teaching style to be understandable to those who may not be familiar with even the basics.

Don’t get me wrong, there’s a time, a place, and an audience for teaching advanced technique, but beginners are the most eager students and truly the bigger audience. Those of us who know how to do makeup aren’t nearly as likely to be roaming youtube for educational videos. Trust me, I know that it can be difficult to adjust things, especially language, for those who may not know terms like blend, stipple, or contour, but if you can find a way to teach the terms while demonstrating the technique (and that means taking more time then telling your watchers to stipple and then speeding through actually doing it), you will have a loyal following.

Also, if you’re going to label your video a tutorial, take the time to actually teach and not just show off so that the beginners and intermediate learners may still be able to follow along even if they may not be completely familiar with all of the terms and techniques. If you don’t want to take the time to really teach, don’t label your video a tutorial.

Last, label your videos “beginner” or “advanced” so that people seeking to learn get more out of their search and know what they’re getting themselves into when they start watching.

Classic example of more show off than teaching:

– For beginners, I’m going to make a post later about how to dissect video tutorials and I may even create a glossary of terms to be referred to. =)