33 | How Much Time It Takes To Make Videos
This week, I released a video 🎬 about A Caribbean Island Like No Other 🚀. This video is about a dual nation island called St Martin. In case you don't get the notification, every time I post a new video, you can get an alert by clicking here. 🎞️
I've been asked few times how much time it takes to make one of these videos. I'll tell you in a moment but before continuing any further, please guess: few hours, a day, a week? OK, send me an Instagram message here, Tweet me here or just hit “reply” to this email. I'm curious to know what your guess is.
I can tell you that when I started YouTube I had no clue about how long it would take so I thought few hours per week would be reasonable. Let me tell you the truth and the best way is to break it down. Let's assume that the video duration is 8-10 minutes (most of my videos). Currently this is how I'd divide my tasks:
🧠 IDEA. I have a Notion page with ideas already (we'll leave for another day how I brainstorm) but typically I adjust a bit, so 1 hour is generally OK to have an initial idea.
✍️ WRITE. This is anywhere from 3 to 6 hours. This is literally the most important thing to have a decent video. The story needs to be clear and to come up with a 3-part-structure it can take time. Some people do bullet points and start talking (I used to do that but then I needed to correct a lot of stuff in Post Processing) or alternatively script every word (or the majority)… and this is my preferred choice as it saves me a lot of time when I edit.
🎬 FILM. When I do A-Roll (me talking to the camera) I'd spend 1 hour talking maximum as there's a lot going on such as sometimes changing layouts, adjusting gear, re-filming due to certain times being better, etc… so easily an extra 1 hour. When it comes to B-roll (supplemental footage to support what I say) this depends on what type of video but if all I need to shoot is at home, it's another 1 hour. If I need to shoot a travel, this increases exponentially, it can easily become days.
💻 EDIT. This is anywhere from 10 to 20 hours. We're still assuming that the final video will be 8-10 minutes duration. There's a lot of things involved here as it's not just dragging and dropping clips. There's cutting in/out points, assembling A-Roll & B-Roll, tightening the cuts, markers, titles, transitions, images, effects, music, sound effects, timing the music, limiter and EQ, colour grading and exporting… among other things. If you compare my first video with my latest video, I hope you can see my progress… and some of the elements I mentioned before.
📤 PUBLISH. This is one of the most rewarding moments. Uploading the mp4/mov file to YouTube. It will take up to 30 mins to upload and then YouTube will process SD, HD and 4K versions in hours. So it's important to schedule the video, otherwise it will be in SD quality (480p resolution, like an old DVD). What I also do is to upload the file to REV for translation in other languages. You might have noticed that in every video, I put Spanish and English subtitles that you can easily activate. At the same time, Title and Thumbnails are even more important than the video itself. Creators always say “Earn the Click” (Title/Thumbnail) and “Make Them Stay” (Great Content). It feels like a simple 2-step-process but not so simple to execute. Overall, I'd say this can take up to 1 hour if we already have the title in mind, description, tags and a bunch of other things we do when uploading as well as the thumbnail ready. If thumbnail is not ready, then we need to go to Lightroom or Photoshop and this can take up a bit longer. So, I'd say 1 to 2 hours here.
🎞️ REPURPOSE. This is about using the video and chopping it in multiple clips to be used in other social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Tik Tok. In my case I typically drop 1-2 short videos during the week to promote my videos in a more digestible way. This involves some extra Editing in addition to being active on the platforms in those moments, so I'd say up to 2-3 hours (and I do very little here).
⚙️ ANALYTICS. When there's growth people start looking more and more at analytics to understand what they can improve on each video. YouTube Studio has a lot of metrics to understand more about our channel, audience, reach and engagement. I check everyday for informational purposes but I don't really do a lot of analysis yet. So I'd say 0 hours here… but at some point I'll use it.
🤯 TOTAL = 20 to 35 hours (per week for one video)
Yes. Each video that is 8-10 minutes requires 20-35 hours of work during the week. It's a proper part-time job (nights and weekends).
Hopefully I addressed the question and if you want to start your YouTube channel, don't get discouraged by the amount of time. Some people do faster, some people outsource many of those steps and some people like me try to do everything to learn and enjoy the process.
I don't have any goals in terms of subscribers, views and likes. Of course, I appreciate those goodies that can help with the algorithm so my videos can be recommended and reach more people… but my only real goal is to make 1 new video every week for 2 years, so 100 videos. After that, we can talk about goals.
Have a great week and enjoy the content below!
PS: if you gained value, please share this post with your friends 💌
🎯 This Week’s Quote
“You should be far more concerned with your current trajectory than with your current results.”
Atomic Habits by James Clear
📝 This Week's Blog Post
When we think about a dual nation, I’m sure we’re thinking of 2 different countries and far away from each other. Well, this Caribbean island has 2 European countries in one very tiny piece of land. Let’s talk about St Maarten / St Martin.
Read more: A Caribbean Island Like No Other
🎥 This Week's Video
A dual nation in one tiny island. The world's steepest zip line. Stunning beaches. But more importantly, the comeback story of a Caribbean island like no other. Welcome to St Maarten and St Martin! Here's the video.
Have you enjoyed the recent videos? Then please feel free to hit the button below to subscribe to the channel so I can keep making more free videos every week. 🚀