March 17, 2021

How to Create Content: Nate and James Share Their Process


Partner at Hirewell. #3 Ranked Sarcastic Commenter on LinkedIn.

Episode Highlights

Subscribe to the Talent Insights podcast on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, (recommended for Android users), Amazon Music, or Spotify. Watch us on YouTube—and don’t forget to rate us!

Sometimes you just have to get real tactical.

James Hornick and Nate Guggia talk about content creation ad nauseum. But if you’ve never done it before, where do you start?

Episode 5 of The Employer Content Show got very granular with How to Create Content: Nate and James Share Their Process. They walk through what they do on a step-by-step basis, on both a personal and company-wide level, so have your notepad ready.

Partner at Hirewell. #3 Ranked Sarcastic Commenter on LinkedIn.

Episode Transcript

All right, everybody. Welcome to the employer. Content show part of the talent insights series brought to you by Hirewell and Careerwell, I’m your host James Hornick joining me is my cohost from job portraits, employer brand living legend Nate Guggia.

The lead up to the intro. I just started smiling. I know you’re just waiting on beta breath, what I’m going to say next. All right. So today’s a, we talked about this last week. Today we want to get real tactical and specific and talk about, I kind of titled it. You know, how to create content, Nate and James share their process.

I do get a lot of questions from, I’ve always kind of, , I don’t want to say shocked, but at Hirewell, I like to think we’re pretty good at making content. You know, don’t want a toot our horn. We’re pretty good at it. Not the best ever, but the thing like in the post I made yesterday is we don’t have any full time content marketers on staff here.

There no one here that like directs us through this stuff. it’s just all we have. We have one digital specialist who’s excellent. Who helps us out with like a lot of the production stuff.  but the rest of it, it’s all just. People doing there are domain experts kind of in the recruiting area who just decided to get involved in content creation.

So,   I think it’s important to note that you can do a lot without actually having any dedicated content people on staff. And I’ve had quite a few people that actually have legit marketing departments, like ask me, how do you make a podcast? How do you do these live videos and stuff like that? Which I always find kind of funny cause they have like a team of people who.

This is their actual job, you know, but I just think content is a different thing. you can’t really compare it to a lot of the other kind of marketing functional areas.  but,  and I know the people have asked both you and I both at like Howard. So they’re just kind of curious, like how we go about this and whatnot.

So, yeah.  I’ve actually noticed that marketing teams when they want to take what they do, but then apply it to. What you’re talking about. It’s just like, it’s just different. the messaging is different. The energy is different. It’s like, it’s hard to take like a formal, if you’re used to like formal marketing and then apply that to let’s say like LinkedIn organic content, the two aren’t the same.

\ I think it comes down to content. Marketing is really, it has to be driven by domain experts. You know what I mean? Like you can’t be your marketing team who know if you’re a software dev company, like you’re selling, if you want to talk about software, like your marketing team, literally can’t write that content.

Like your dev people have to like, or at least kind of communicate that. And then you can say about any industry, it’s the people actually doing the work have to be kind of all in the content process, which is why it’s a little different. Yeah. I wanted to break this up in a couple of things because I wanted to talk about, so I’m just going to give away the farm are the higher, well, our content kind of process.

And , I want to hear kind of your comments on stuff you’ve done with clients that might kind of add on to that. Then talk about me personally, which is really a subset of like the larger kind of the process. And then very I’m going to really rattle off like what equipment to buy, what sites we use to what tools we use and stuff like that in case people really just want me to tell them here’s what you need to buy and you can do it with you.

Okay. So,   first off, the thing that I think is hardest for everyone is what the hell do you actually want to talk about? this is the thing that I think most people I’ve talked to have asked me, like, okay, how do you decide, how do you pick what topics? And I think it’s real simple. Like you have to, first off, you have to have like a company wide brainstorm.

It’s optional, right? Anybody you have to open up to anybody who wants to be involved.   you need to make sure you have leaders involved.  so several people kind of on the leadership team have to be kind of behind this, but then open up to absolutely anybody else who wants to have a voice. It has a lot of, you’re gonna get a lot of different ideas.

Then you wouldn’t have, otherwise you’re gonna have people. , might be junior just getting their career started. They’re gonna have completely different and valuable observations that you as the experienced person may take for granted, because it’s something you haven’t thought of in a while.

So you need to get people all levels, just, you know, to kind of get involved. I would do that once a month, once a quarter, making sure you’re a brainstorming list of stuff you want to talk about.  I also think that part is important because it’s another forum for your employees to have a voice in the strategic direction of the company.

So yes, it’s a content strategy session, but it’s also just a way to let people know they’re being heard and contribute and whatnot. So that in itself, like it has tremendous value. And lastly, I think that, just in this one step alone, you and I have talked about like how hard it is to get employee driven content, how you don’t really like the idea.

It’s, it’s hard to pull off. This is a way to ease people into it. There’s gonna be a lot of people who aren’t comfortable making content being on video. We’re posting that we’ll be comfortable participating in a brainstorming session. And that’s how you kind of get people slowly kind of integrated into like the larger initiative of if your goal is to get more people kind of involved in this stuff.

This is, I get people who are maybe definitely afraid of like putting themselves out there to slowly kind of  put a toe in the water, so, Oh yeah. I like that smart. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. And I think it’s like  when we started doing that. I think that wasn’t like to have these three things in mind. He just realized after the fact, like, this is ultimately what the result is.

So yeah. So step one, trying to figure out. So what do you want to talk about though? So in these brainstorming sessions, here’s what you do. For us, I’ll put this in a phrase in terms of recruiting firms, since that’s what we are, but like, what are your clients talking about? What questions are they asking you?

What questions are candidates asking you? Like, , if you’re a software consultancy, if you were a tax consultancy, if you’re a SAS firm, if you’re whatever,  whoever’s talking to clients, what questions are they being asked? Hmm. Whatever those answers are, that’s what you need to be making your content about.

Simple as that. second thing would be trends. Like what trends are you like? Surely something is happening, especially this year of all times, but there’s always something new happening, something different in the market. What kind of variables are you seeing that maybe you didn’t see three months ago or something like that?

Like, those are all the things you need to talk about. Also like internally, I would say too. what questions do people have, maybe your more junior employees who are learning their craft and learning your field? What questions do they have for more senior people? You know what I mean about like, in our case, like recruiting business here or whatnot, but it really, I think applies anywhere.

Like what if you’re as again, a software dev firm, if what questions do your junior developers have for your senior developers about their, like, that’s another thing you should be making content about. So, those are kind of the three things you want to be kind of uncovering in your brainstorm session.

From that point on it’s just about giving up assignments and,  assignments, I’ll talk about kind of leading into this. Like,  I’m not huge on blogs as a, like, that’s not your moneymaker, but that’s like your baseline content to flush out a topic. Hmm. So I’m always big on, I think people need to be better writers, no matter what your craft is, what your skill is like, you need to get your writing skills down.

So when people have, when we have these big lists of rainstorms, do you have assignments? Okay.   someone volunteer for this blog. So in volunteer for this blog, some, a volunteer for this blog, give out writing assignments,  make sure that broken up between different people on the team.

this is stuff that’s maybe have a whole quarter planned out, so it’s not like it’s a tight deadline when you’re asking somebody, Hey, we need this done kind of immediately. But give them time  but also it’s, it’s a good way to,  have someone in charge of flushing out doing research.

Okay. What else about this topic? Did we not think of in our own heads? We can go kind of Google and see what other people kind of talk about. We can kinda include in the topic. So getting into that. so channels, blogs, newsletters, live events, , social sharing,  the whole Gary V model.

Ultimately, as we’ve said before, I’m not a huge Gary V fan, but the model he has is what you should be using. Yeah, it makes too much sense. Yeah. the money isn’t in the social sharing for most places. But back to that last, because I think that’s the thing that when people see people posting on LinkedIn or other social media, like how do we start doing that?

That’s actually the result of everything else you do with that. Part’s easy once everything else had done. So blogs already talked about team-driven content, flush out each topic. It does create evergreen content for your site does boost your SEO.  I think most importantly though, it’s signals, you’re still active.

Like whenever you see a company that has a blog, no, one’s like updated in six months. You just know they don’t give a shit, you know, just by having stuff posted recently, you know what I mean? Like you have to make sure you’re still posting somewhat regularly just to people who will like check you out as more of a venting process.

Realize . You’re still at this. newsletters, which I know is something you’re going to have some, some things to say about cause you do one yourself personally. I think they’re underrated. I think they’re very valuable. I think emails like the one thing, your list or one thing you own,  short and pithy, just keep it.

They don’t have to be terribly long. It should be something you can write in five or 10 minutes. You’re summarizing your blog post you’re summarizing what events you have coming up your backlinking events you already had. you want to make sure you’re hitting the notes. That really are kind of most relevant to whoever that core audience is.

for us it’s like hiring managers, HR people, stuff like that. So like insights we have, they’re kind of most kind of directly relevant to them. and then kind of, yeah. Getting to the really heart of it and what we’re doing right now. And probably if anyone is watching this and interest in what we’re doing, like long form events, You know, which I think are key because this is where you end up getting your social sharing and stuff from later.

But, I prefer there’s a lot of different schools of thought on this. I like doing the trifecta. You want live. You want everything to live on every channel possible. you then want to back that up with like archive video on YouTube. Then you want to turn into a podcast. So you have every channel hit you and I are going to talk for 30 minutes, 45 minutes today, and it’s going to be one thing we can kind of use from there on out, podcast strategy.

 I think that there’s really three things to this. one is, if you can, if it’s a brand new area, If you can own it, you can be the first one talking about some new subject. Great. If you can become the de facto GoTo. I know Dave, Gearhart’s talked about this a lot. I think for him it was like a product or something like that.

When you back at drift,  if there’s a category you’re related to that, no one else has talked about yet. Like you’re home free. It’s hard to do though. You know what I mean? Like there’s a million places talking about recruiting out there, then there’s inviting. So that’s one, two, an objective inviting guests onto the show.

For both one for exposure and two for sometimes. They’re your real audience. Yeah. honestly, , we used to do a lot of guests. We’ll probably start doing guest again some time.  I don’t love this. Like a lot of, I feel like everyone does it. I also feel like, the thing that’s challenging about guests is that some people are very comfortable doing live interviews.

Some people are not very comfortable and you don’t really know which way the content is going. Personally. I think what I really like is knowing that, like we put together a great show where people are going to get something out of it. There’s nothing up to chance that whoever we have kind of on as the guest may or may not hit all the notes they need to, you know what I mean?

Which is why, which is what I’m doing, what you and I are doing right now is I like having shows. So this is where kind of our focus is, is like you and I do this show. Clear content show Jeff and I do the 10 minute talent rant we’ll occasionally have job secret guests on for adventures and job seeking, but I know ahead of time exactly what we’re talking about.

We have an outline, we’re going to go through it’s stuff. We’ve kind of put some thought into, and I know that like, people who are in our audience are going to find some value out of this. Yeah. and then kind of the last part about this before I,  Kind of wrap up the rest of this kind of company strategy thing, the social sharing.

So, about this from your corporate account, not from your personal account, but from your corporate account. Okay.  you got to post every day. There’s no reason not to, you know, but  what you can do in post every day should be kind of a mixed different thing. So you’ve got the clips from these events.

You’ve got one thing works great is online reviews. Assuming you have good online reviews. Post those in a slide show, thing that’s huge that always gets the most engagement employee. Employee features anniversaries. Promotions.  anyone, someone achieves something, anytime someone is a guest somewhere.

Talk about that. new features to your product or service events you have coming up,  client profiles and partnerships. We’ll talk about our case studies. We’ve done with certain clients and stuff like that. hit all the notes and these are just some ideas I have, right. Just probably lots of other things I haven’t hit on, but hit all the notes in terms of video images, documents of slides.

You know what I mean?  you don’t really do a lot of text posts for the company. Company site, but, and also, I should say, I’m not just talking about LinkedIn, but I’m also talking about Facebook, Instagram, you know, kind of whatever else so that I just rambled through a whole bunch of stuff is high level.

What the strategy is for how we kind of go about things. And then once again, I’ll say the key to make all of this work is getting people involved and getting as many people involved in your brainstorming sessions. Nice. Thanks. Ma’am,  part one of four for today, so, okay. Alright. My part about what we do, it’s going to be much, much shorter.

it’s, surprising. Maybe not. We are a content studio that isn’t yeah, great at producing content for ourselves. Cause we’re producing it for our clients, but it’s really important that we eat our own dog food that we eat. Do the things that we’re telling clients they need to do. so if you were to go,  to the job portraits career site, you’ll see all the content that we recommend, core pieces of content that we wrote for ourselves.

But I think when it comes to the, team member side, We have this process where when you’re hired on as a new, full time team member,  a couple of things happen. One of our writers schedules an interview, and just interviews you for 45 minutes, like as a journalist, because that’s the background that they all have.

and they ask us a series of questions and they take that and they put it into just a really well written, polished blog post that lives on our career site. So you can find out if you’re interested in working for job portraits, you can find out. Like pretty deep stuff about everybody on our team.  I’ll tell you the thing that, that did was it just made me feel special when I did it.

It was like, Oh, this is super cool. You know, they’re doing something for me and it’s real and I can share it with my family or whatever, you know, and it was, and it was cool. But then another thing too is, we have a process for recording a day in the life video. so there’s a mic that everybody. Gets a budget for that.

They buy on Amazon and then we just have of everything you do and you record basically clips of yourself throughout the day, because we’re a fully remote company built remote. It’s important for, for candidates to see what it’s like during our day. So, yeah. I recorded mine, you know, starting from the beginning, when I wake up with my son, he’s crawling all over me.

And then there’s, you know, a piece where like I’m doing yoga during the middle of the day, because that’s some of the things that I do. and then one of our editors takes that and puts it together with music and stuff. And we have these like minute and a half the videos that are all over our careers, page two.

and so I think it just like comes back to like process. And if you can put a process in place creating the content, actually isn’t that hard.  but that’s where people get stuck is they’re like, Oh, I need to create stuff, but  they don’t have a framework for doing this.  that’s just us on the job portrait side.

And then, you know, I mean, as far as like activity on, who’s the most visible, that’s me, I’m the only one in the company who’s doing it right now.  I’m also the only one who really has interested in doing it. So that’s the other reason I’m doing it, but it’s, but it’s fine. so I want to get down and get kind of personal process and whatnot and kind of things down to, but just kinda dumped down.

Like if one of the things you said there it’s, it’s easier than you think to have a lot of things to post from either a company or from your personal account. Once you kind of follow this process because once you start doing live events like this and you start recording, I mean, you learn how to make clips like you and I have both been in situations where like, you want to have more videos to post than we’ll ever be able to post.

Right? Like we’ve taken more clips from some of the stuff from like, I’m just never going to get around to this. So it takes the content creation piece takes care of itself, as opposed to, I know a lot of people get burned out with trying to be active on, on social media because  it’s such a chore for them, but it’s actually easy when you kind of take this approach.

So yeah. All right. Personal. So this kind of dovetails a little bit on, it’s a riff on kind of the greater company process and whatnot. So again, what I’d like to talk about, you know, when I was talking about that from a company side, like going to brainstorm group brainstorming sessions.

When I talk about questions, I get. You know, from job seekers from clients, like anytime I get questions, that stuff that you want to make sure you’re kind of addressing in the, kind of the content you create.  ideas I get from reading other people’s stuff now, very important to say, do not steal other people’s posts, but if somebody brought up a topic you haven’t thought of before, right.

And you have that creates a new thought in your head, like your own,  take on it, your own opinion on it. Like that should be something that you should be. Comfortable kind of sharing with other people. It’s a way that you arrived at, you know, a take that maybe you wouldn’t have otherwise, this is the other thing too, is you don’t always have to reinvent the wheel, like go back and look, whatever your company, like, whatever your company’s content is or whatever you guys have talked about in the last three months, like, feel free to give your own kind of hot take on.

Maybe some of those topics. You don’t have to kind of reinvent the wheel every single time.  again, I personally don’t like just like taking something that someone else had, but like, at least in that case, like that stuff that you guys did collaborate on, you know what I mean?

So if there is kind of a hot take, you have, that’s a little bit different on something you guys were talking about on that week or whatever. Like that’s something you should also be able to go.  and once again, I’ll say hard pass on motivational posts. Hate them will never be a fan. Keep it tactical again, just my opinion.

Other things to do, always take notes and ideas you have. I’ve talked about this a lot before you want to have a library of stuff you can riff off of. You’re going to have ideas at any given day. You’re probably going to have a dozen ideas in your head to make great things to talk about. You just kind of forget to move on.

I don’t really use hoot suite as a posting platform, but I just, I downloaded it at one point in time and I just use it as we’re I upload any random idea that comes in, cause it’s both on my phone and, on my browser. So wherever I am, I can always add something to it. And then if I do want to just post there, I can,  notepad by like, I have so many ideas in the middle of the night.

Like I just wake up in the middle of night all the time and I’ll just have something kind of burning in my head. So,  I found it’s actually helped me get to sleep better by writing something down that way I can stop thinking about it. And then if I can read my chicken scratch in the morning, a lot of times we’ll have good ideas.

one thing and we’ll have to give a shout out to our boy, Chris Walker on this one is the conference call cam or the second cam. Yeah.  something that you and I do, something that I know he’s I think he invented this and I don’t know. I haven’t seen anyone else do it, but anytime I have, so if you’re on a call with somebody you’re on a zoom,  and you’re talking with them here, you shouldn’t.

Record that call without their knowledge and chances are they wouldn’t be comfortable with you recording a call, you know, just to post on social media, but having, if you have an earpiece in, and there’s no audio coming through on your computer, setting up a second separate camera that only gets you,  and it’s just a, camera of you talking and there’s no one else on the other line.

, if you’re on a guest on some other podcast, or if you’re having more of a consultative type call. Record those, and you might have some great nuggets. It’s again, it comes down to the idea of when people ask you a question, whatever your answer is, we’ll make good content. That’s typically what happens in those situations.

You’re typically answering questions. And now you have a video of you talking about whatever that topic was. That’s really easy content to have to. so those are all kind of on top of the stuff I will do from the company level, other things I kind of add. and when it just comes down to it, You just got to post it’s consistency, it’s repetition.

And it’s also skill building, the more you do it, the easier it is, the easier it is to write copy.  I think people should. If not for the sake of like raising your company’s profile, just the act of writing something every day is valuable because you just become a better writer.

And I guess the last thing I would say is I’m a big believer that you need to always be active, standing your domain knowledge, it’s domain knowledge that makes people want to follow you and hear from you. So you always have to be learning more. And you always have to be expanding your knowledge new areas, because if you just talk about, about the same five things over again, people are going to tune you out.

Yeah. And that’s the worst thing to happen if you build an audience, but half of them don’t care to listen what you have to say anymore. Cause you just keep saying the same damn thing over and over again. that’s the only way to really keep an audience going longterm is to expand your knowledge so you can help expand their knowledge.

  things I haven’t done yet, which I know are valuable. And I’d like you to talk about a little more to personal newsletters, personal websites,  And do you think you would ever write a book, Nate?  No. No, but I do, periodically have people message me and tell me that I should write a book and I just say steal all my posts and just put it into a book.

Go for it. yeah, no. okay. So my process,  You’ve been doing this longer than me, but let’s just say I’ve been doing this for 15 consecutive months or whatever it is three months older than you. Okay. All right. So you know, at the beginning it was something that I was interested in doing. So I was thinking, about slants on my industry, admittedly initial posts, now that I look back at them, we’re like, okay, Somewhat generic compared to some of the stuff I post now, but it just started me writing and you talked about the more you do it, the easier it gets.

I think like one thing that like practitioners, people who do this on a regular basis understand is that there is a way of communicating on certain platforms. So for me, it’s on LinkedIn. There’s a way to write that copy. There’s a way to design that copy that makes it just readable smooth. Whatever, it’s just like you get into that mode.

And the more I did it, the more that switch in my brain just started to like slowly turn on to the point now where it’s on all the time. And I’m basically thinking in post format most of the time, it’s like it’s running in the back of my mind. And so what I’m doing is capturing screen ideas because I know what a post can look like.

I know how many characters it should be, all that kind of stuff. And I like you. I use the notes app on my phone, and I am continually writing posts and post ideas that are anywhere from 25% to like 75% complete. and then what I do is I take whatever, like I just know what’s in that app now, like I just know what’s down that list and, and I’ll go, okay, I’m going to post about this tomorrow.

And then I’ll get excited about it because I love the creative process of it. And I’ll take like three or four of those posts out and I’ll throw them into a Google. I have a, folder in Google drive and I have two folders. One is drafted in the works and one is posted and Though drafts in the works probably has 15 in there and I’ll just pull three or four in there and I’ll just start writing off of like a couple of them and whatever one is feeling right.

And whatever, when I’m flowing with I’ll go to it and like, This is where I, like, I really geek out on this stuff because,  the writing process of it is what I truly enjoy. Like I love the writing process of it. And so I will take a lot of time to write the simplest post where, because I want to do it. I will tweak one word here, one word there, nobody cares about that stuff, but I just do it because like, it’s really important for me.

 and that’s where I’m like exercising my brain and getting, just becoming a better writer. And that’s the process that I do over and over and over again. to the point now where it’s just like, it’s, it’s basically automatic. I didn’t want to cut you off at any point there. Do you ever look at like the notes that are in your phone or wherever the stuff that’s really old, they never got around to it.

Ooh, bad. Yes, I do. I was thinking about that as I was saying. I know within that, on that list, because that list is really long. And some of that stuff at the bottom has been there for, for a long time. Yeah. It’s not going anywhere. It’s not going anywhere, but, you know, and my inspiration, the biggest source of inspiration that I get is, is it’s triggered through exercise.

I mean, I think you and I both, like we work out every day in one way or another. and so when I work out, I listen to podcasts, none of it related to my, direct industry. It’s all stuff. Everything from Rogan to a marketing podcast, whatever. And as I’m exercising, like it just frees up my mind and I’ll hear something and I’ll go, Oh, that’s it.

That’s I can relate that to my industry or that’s an interesting perspective. And I’ll just stop, like while I’m on a run and just like start typing. And , I mean, there’s some times when I do that three or four times on a run,  I’m not short on content. Like there’s just so much of it that I’ll never get to because it’s, I’m just thinking about all the time.

Yeah. I was never a big listen to podcast guy, but ever since I’m kind of in the middle of all of this, because the thing is for me, my commute was always like really short. And cause I took the tramp one stop on the train and I was at work , but, , I just have to get out and like, I walk more now I have to like make a point to get out of the house.

And so like, I’ll listen to a podcast every day and I’m always listening to business related stuff. Just for like the same thing you said, like getting different ideas and stuff. I wouldn’t have thought of otherwise. Yeah. The thing I just like, I really want to stress to people is that when you start doing it.

And you realize that it’s, that posting is it’s an exercise. It’s an exercise for you becoming a better content creator for becoming a better writer for you thinking differently or continually thinking differently about your industry. It just forces you to like find holes to like go, it just makes you better.

So like, don’t worry about, Oh, what am I going to post about? Just like start doing it because. I promise it just gets, easier. and you’d be so surprised what direction your, your stuff will go in. And  don’t stress about engagement numbers, because most of the posts that have really high engagement are garbage anyways, seriously.

And like even the more, the more tactical or the more granular you get Usually the lower, the engagement, because it’s serving a smaller audience, which is what you w what you really want. Yeah. Yeah. All right. Let’s get into some of the closing stuff here. Cause this is also something that I’ve had to talk about with people, equipment.

How do you actually, what do you actually buy here? So here’s my Amazon list. Okay.  so yeah, I think we’ve in terms of video, audio and lighting. So I’ll kind of start with,  what’s that, well,   you don’t have a ring light on you. Yeah. you don’t, you don’t have the glow, all the money. It’s kind of hit me kind of right, right here for head of mine anyway.

all right. So what I would do, what I always recommend to people. So first I’ll start with onsite equipment. Cause this is back in the days when things were really fun, when you can do onsite events. I always recommend it. So  camera the same for both. So logic tech, you just need a standard high definition, webcam.

 I want the logic tech, the . There’s a bunch of logic texts that are kind of 10 ADP. typically your computers, video is going to be garbage. Like  if you’re working in an office where you get like the standard computer that they gave you, nothing upgraded, you need a better camera.

So,  but yeah, just don’t overthink it , you don’t have to be anything super crazy, but like, you should be able to get a logic tech high definition, camera hundred dollar range or something like that.  nothing crazy. So that goes for weather. Like right now I’m using one, but that’s the same thing I would use it for in our office.

I’m talking about microphones. So USB mics versus XLR mics  and I have to bring this up because, there’s a difference whether I’m doing things onsite or at home. So when you’re just, you’re by yourself in a computer, all you need is a simple USB mic on hold this up. This is a blue snowball. During normal times, these cost about 50 bucks.

They’re great. They serve their purpose.  I know that both lighting and USB mics are crazy right now because of the pandemic. Like the price had been fluctuating. Like I saw them for 45 bucks one day, the next you say they’re 80. Like they’re always all over the place with the supply and demand, but there’s probably a lot of other mid range USB mics, if not the blue snowball that are probably in that $50 range , that’ll do just fine.

When you’re onsite when you’re doing things kind of, you know, with other people and then same room,  that’s when you need to get a mixer and mixers are going to have different microphones. So they only mixer you need to worry about is the zoom H six mixer. So not zoom as in zoom webinars, but there’s another company called zoom that makes mixers.

 the age six is a pretty small handheld can be powered by battery where you plug it in. It can have plugged four mics into it. So every person in the room can have their own kind of dedicated mic.  and you’ll need XLR mikes for that, which are the more traditional I believe their analog was kind of the difference.

I didn’t realize until a year ago that there’s no such thing as a USB mixer. So at least a year ago there wasn’t. So there’s mixers that have USB. out ports or are exporting, not ones that take USB mics is important. You need different kinds of mics when you put things into a mixer to do like in-person podcast with everyone has their own microphone.

now the zoom H six mixer, there are some things you want to get with that because what you want to do is be able to tie it into you want to be able to record on that thing locally. So you get multi-track high quality recording, and then you also want to have an output but that goes to your live streaming platform.

If you’re doing what we’re doing here, or if you’re taking any kind of video, now it’s got a USB drive, but the thing is, , if when that hooks into it pewter, you can’t record on the thing. It actually recording the computer. And it’s a long story short. You want to record the actual audio tracks on the mixer itself.

And then use the analog output, which is like the cell line out. You get like a three and a half millimeter cord, which is headphone looking cord. You want to plug that into a USB adapter. And so the, the audio you’ll use for what we’re doing right here will be that audio you’ll record , the audio on that thing.

But the audio use for your video live thing will be coming out of the line out, drive, plugging into your computer. If you have any questions hit me up and I can explain this again or to sit rewind when I put this on YouTube and hopefully it makes sense. So need a coordinated adapter.  you need some XLR mics and XLR cables.

I think the ones we got in terms of mikes were 60, $80, something like that. You don’t need anything crazy. Like for XLR mikes, you can get like really expensive thousand dollar microphones. You don’t need that.   ring lights getting to that.  we have one really large 18 incher. And then we have a bunch of small desk sized ones.

Like the one I have here, that’s lighting up my forehead. That’s probably 10 inches or so, something like that, maybe it’s eight inches. , you,  just turn on the yellow, turn off the white for, for me at least, I don’t need to be completely washed out, but, , they’re cheap. Like the desktop ones are typically 25 bucks.

Now they might be more because of the pandemic, but nothing you need to spend crazy money on. So that’s all the equipment you need. And it’s really not that much. The mixer is probably 300 bucks, 350 bucks, but everything else is pretty cheap.  Now last thing I’ll talk about is tools and stuff you do to put this together.

So streaming art is what we use for live events.  LinkedIn live YouTube, Facebook,  we’re hitting all three at the same time right now, and it also makes a recording. So you can get gives you an audio and video recording so you can download everything afterwards. Does all this stuff automatically,  One thing I’ll mention is that if you’re not doing live video, if you’re not actually streaming live.

You’re better off just using zoom. One thing I love about zoom is that you can record and it’ll give you multi-track recording. So I was talking about the mixer before, but actual, but the same thing for zoom as a zoom, the video player, it’ll record your track and my track on two different files. So if you need to adjust the levels, if one person is quieter than the other one, you can do that automatically.

Versus if it’s on one file, that’s really hard to do. Hmm. So just use zoom. if you’re looking to do a podcast and you’re not looking to do anything, that’s actually like live streaming. Anyone just use zoom, video editing. This is actually one. I didn’t know if we always use premier, which is, you know, it can be kind of pricey, DaVinci resolve.

Does everything that premier does except it’s completely free and actually does better subtitles. I don’t know why, but the premiere subtitles just look like garbage.  at least we couldn’t figure it out, but DaVinci resolve is great.  a little bit easier to use too. So, but any video editing software, everything you need to do to kind of put this stuff together, add the banners and everything else you can do with DaVinci resolve,   podcast editing.

 it was a site called descript.  the script is great. So fixes the levels. You can make it take out filters. It can create transcripts. It can do honestly knew tons of stuff having looked into yet.  we’ve been using YouTube for subtitling. I think descript might be we’ll do that automatically, too.

I’m not sure, but a lot of stuff on descript it’s totally free. YouTube is great for, as I said, subtitling YouTube has a vested interest in giving everything subtitled so they can search it. You know what I mean? But if you upload your video to YouTube, even if you don’t share it with anyone, but you put it on, just put it on unlisted or whatever, it will create, subtitling files, which you can then download.

So they’re about 90% accurate. So I need to kind of fix them up a little bit, but in terms of like subtitling, you take that file, you put it into DaVinci, resolve with your video and boom, you got subtitles. Didn’t have to transcribe anything. last things,  podcast hosting distribution, we use Libsyn that has been around forever.

So that’ll put your podcast on every podcast channel you can possibly want and a simple image editing.  I would hire an intern. So a lot of graphic design interns out there who can kind of put all your stuff together, they can make your YouTube thumbnails, all that kind of stuff, pay them.

But, you know, for simple images and stuff, like I can do that if,  if your budget’s really tight, there are a lot of kind of free image stuff online, like Canva and stuff like that. You can do a lot of that work. So

that’s it. That’s my list. I might make a document out of all the stuff I bought, but if you’re. I’ll never forget the before I started doing video, when you were pushing me to do video, I messaged you and said, What should I, what should I get? And I think your wife was out of town and you went down the rabbit hole on life.

You sent me this full list. So,  here, I took this, I copied this, what I just did. I copy and pasted that message I sent you and put it here. So I basically read most of that. Cool. okay. So for  those who are not as. Let’s just say savvy or even interested in all of those things. I’ll tell you my process, which is much shorter and simpler, although it does cost money.

 let me just start with saying that I have a budget. My company gives me a budget to create content. Okay. That’s like really important for people to know, because that’s the only reason I’m able to do some of the things that I’m able to do. so James, as you mentioned, you know, full credit to Chris for the external cam.

Idea. I mean, that’s for sure where you and I got it.  so like you said, , I have a, what is it, if a candidate 800 D camera and a tripod and it sits, you know, usually I’m in my office, which is outside and it’s an external. Detached garage. And I have the garage door up and I get tons of natural light. So like I never have to worry about it, that lighting, but,  I’ll have camera just set up, like on the other side of my laptop, on the other side of my desk.

And like you said, it’s just recording me. And if I know that I’m going to be on, on a call where I’m going to maybe like drop some knowledge or like whatever, like potentially have a clip, then I’ll just record that thing. the mic that I use is just, it’s a wireless lav mic.  It’s nothing fancy. I think it costs a couple hundred bucks.

So what I just described, I think we bought a refurbished camera and the mic was probably 800 bucks together, plus the tripod. So maybe 900 bucks. , the process though, I outsourced all of my video editing. I don’t do any of it myself. My team doesn’t do it. Nobody does it in house. So I have a freelancer.

 who’s really just really skilled at doing this kind of. Producing this kind of content. So I’ll record full, full video clips. if I have time, I’ll actually go through those and find timestamps just to make it faster for him and it’s cheaper for me. , and then we have a shared a folder in Google drive.

I’ll upload the raw footage into Google drive. We also, you have a shared Slack channel. , I’ll send them the link to the Rob video in Slack and I’ll give him timestamps if I have those, He created the template for me. He knows how to find the clips. He like totally gets it. , I was delighted the very first time the guy knows nothing about employer branding.

I gave him no direction. I just sent him raw footage and he came back with like dialed in clips. It was like, well, this guy knows what to find. , he puts them back in the, in a folder for me. And then I had just have clips to go off of. so like, I really don’t do anything besides the work that I normally do.

I just record it. and then, we’ve also started doing this with zoom, our cofounder and I, you know, we’ve started having these, these conversations where we’re talking about the business and the industry and all this kind of stuff. We do it over zoom and we record those. I send him the zoom recording, I’ll say, send my freelancer, the zoom recording.

And he does the same thing, puts it into a template. Chops it up, finds the clips, add subtitles and everything. internally we use a descript ourselves,  for like the last three or four months, we started producing like authentic video content for clients where we like interview them like this.

We used descript  for that. When we do our own production, it’s such a slick tool. Like you said, most of  the features are free, at least until you get to a certain point of usage and then you pay for, for usage after that. But,  I haven’t personally used it, but the team that does use it loves it.

 yeah, they can’t speak highly enough about it. And so, , I think that’s my process. it’s pretty simple. You made me think of two things. I forgot. So one when I use my second cam, it’s just my cell phone. And I plug in, I have a second, one of these, I plug into it, buy a converter. So getting rid of by a separate camera and I do, and full disclosure, we do have an, I have an excellent digital specialist and she puts together the video clips for us.

 but it was, I guess the thing that was, who was like, I think I mentioned like she didn’t go to school for video editing. It’s just something that she was able to pick up. It’s something that anyone who’s. Smart and tech savvy can, can learn to do you know what I mean? So real video editing where you’re getting like professionally shot videos, like a different level, but for like the stuff like social media we’re to do editing, like it’s something that anyone I think can learn if they’re that’s their job or if they have time to pick it up.

So, yeah. I mean, I think like, if you’re busy or if you don’t have the interests, which are. Both cases for me outsourcing it. ,  it’s a way to get it done and you can do it pretty cheap these days.  yeah, I mean, it’s, I don’t know, like all,  this stuff,  I get messages.

Sometimes people ask me like, Oh, how do you create your video? What do you use for editing and stuff? And like the honest answer is I have no idea because I don’t do any of it myself.  But you just gave like a good rundown. You can’t, there’s like DIY stuff there. I think it’s really, it’s really more just like getting into that, the habit, and just like embracing the idea of recording yourself, talking to somebody.

And when you can record yourself talking, you know, somebody it’s like, it just suddenly makes sense. Well, if you think about the concept, it sounds kind of weird at first, but when you start doing it and you start seeing what the clips look like, you spend zero time rehearsing, anything you’ve spent zero time writing anything, and it comes off as fluid and natural because it was, it was a conversation you were having.

It’s not a pre prepared speech, so just works that much better. You and I used to do that with each other. We had like for a while we had like regular meetings. First employer content shows were just you and I doing zoom calls. Yeah. I’m recording. Hey, anyway, I need some video. Let’s schedule a call. all right.

I think we went pretty long on this one, which I knew it was going to happen. we are gonna be back in, so we don’t always have our next topics figured out, but next topic, we’re going to be demystifying the employer value proposition, the EVP. Yeah.  so that’ll be a fun one that Nate will be largely leading since that’s his domain, but it should be could show that’ll be in two weeks.

but anyways, that’s a wrap for the employer content show for this week. If you want to hear more of what Nate and I have to say, you can subscribe to the Hirewell channel on YouTube, where we have a playlist of all our episodes and the talent insights podcast, which is available on Apple podcasts, Google podcasts, Spotify and Amazon.

Nate. Thanks for, yeah. Thanks for coming as always. And everyone else we’ll see you soon.  


Our Shows

Our Latest Blog