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Episode 111: Creating Food Videos With Veronika Grove

In episode 111, we chat with Veronika Grove who talks to us about how hands and pans videos are important for your blog to create engagement.

We cover information about ways to make Tasty style videos for your blog, how to monetize and use the “see and smell” concept to make your videos appealing.

Listen on the player below or on iTunes, TuneIn, Stitcher, or your favorite podcast player. Or scroll down to read a full transcript.


Guest Details

Connect with Veronika’s Kitchen
Website | Instagram | Facebook

Bio
Veronika’s Kitchen started in 2016, but Veronika began focusing on monetization in 2018. That year Veronika learned how to film Tasty Style Videos which began to be popular on Facebook and other social media. She began producing food videos for other bloggers later that year, while mastering technical knowledge and skills. It was a great way to earn extra income and make friends with a number of food bloggers in the industry. Veronika is now creating a course about Tasty Style Videos. This class will teach people how to film, edit, and monetize food videos from start to finish.

Takeaways

  • Creating hands and pans videos are important because it helps you to entertain and attract your audience’s attention for recipes that a lot of bloggers are overlapping on. 
  • You can use props like maple syrup and different ingredients to make the recipe interesting. You can realistically show off your recipe and help your audience see and smell it. 
  • Trial and error helps you find your best way to stand out with video.
  • Start with your phone and a tripod if that’s what you have.
  • Capture hero shot
  • 1 camera angle, shoot overhead for a complete shot. Editing is easier in this format.
  • Embed video into your own blog – Once they are on your site, you can set them to autoplay.
  • Sponsored posts – Brands want their own product in a video and you can charge money to make it for them.
  • Videos for other bloggers – help those who don’t want to invest in making videos or who need help creating them.
  • If you’re updating your content on your blog, you can refresh your audience with your video again. Add new videos or new process shots because engagement is partly entertainment and ease of understanding how to quickly put a recipe together. 

Transcript

Click for full text.

Intro:

Welcome to Eat Blog Talk where food bloggers come to get their fill of the latest tips, tricks, and insights into the world of food blogging. If you feel that hunger for information, we’ll provide you with the tools you need to add value to your blog. And we’ll also ensure you’re taking care of yourself, because food blogging is a demanding job. Now please welcome your host, Megan Porta.

Megan Porta:

Are you a motivated food blogger, striving to meet financial or freedom goals? If so, then the Eat Blog Talk membership is for you. Take a journey with like-minded peers that will bring you past the overwhelm and straight into the arms of clarity. You will have direct access to guest experts, delivering massive amounts of value into your business. You will have the opportunity to participate in monthly strategy calls, focusing on different aspects of food blogging. And most importantly, you will be part of a tight knit, supportive and encouraging family filled with people just like you. Visit eatblogtalk.com for more information. And the rest of us cannot wait to see you inside.

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Welcome to Eat Blog Talk, the podcast made for you, food bloggers seeking value for your businesses and your lives today. Today, Veronika Grove is joining me for a discussion. She runs the food blog Veronika’s Kitchen, and we are going to talk about how to create tasty style food videos.

Veronika’s Kitchen started in 2016, but Veronica began focusing on monetization in 2018. That year Veronica learned how to film tasty style videos, which began to be popular on Facebook and other social media platforms. She began producing food videos for other bloggers later that year, while mastering technical knowledge and skills. It was a great way to earn extra income and make friends with a number of food bloggers within the industry. Veronica is creating a course about tasty style videos, and this class will teach people how to film, edit, and monetize food videos from start to finish. Veronika, I cannot wait to talk to you about tasty style videos today, but before we do that, give us a fun fact about yourself.

Veronika Grove:

Fact about me. So I think it will be interesting to know that I’m originally from the area or region with the most red head people per capita.

Megan:

Oh! Where are you from?

Veronika:

Originally I’m from Russia and we have an area it’s called Urmayte, it’s in the middle of Russia next to Ural mountains. If you go there, you’ll need so many red head people, with fair skin, blue eyes, looking just like me.

Megan:

That’s crazy. You don’t typically associate red headed people with Russia.

Veronika:

Uh huh, I know.

Megan:

What a great fact. I never would have guessed that. So that is very cool. Thanks for sharing that. Again, I’m just really excited to talk to you today because I’m going to be honest with you, Veronika. I have a love, hate relationship with video right now.

Veronika:

As many people do.

Megan:

I feel like that’s kind of the buzz right now. A lot of people are feeling that same way. So it’s really timely for me personally, because I’m just struggling with whether or not, especially the hands and pans videos or tasty style videos are worth the time and energy to produce because they don’t seem to be getting as much traction. So I’m excited to just allow you to convince me today. Hopefully we come out of this conversation with me having a renewed perspective, as well as everybody listening. So start by telling us why those tasty style videos, which we also call hands and pans videos, are really important right now.

Veronika:

Oh, I think tasty videos are actually so entertaining just to make them, at least for me. I love it. I think my favorite part right now is to create these videos. I think it’s perfect timing also, if you didn’t start making them yet, it’s perfect time to do it right now because there are so many food bloggers in our community in the past few years. It’s amazing that we have so many bloggers creating the same recipes, but it’s getting hard to stand out when you have 20 other bloggers creating the same or a similar recipe for banana bread or muffins. Because our job is not just to provide valuable information like a recipe, but also to entertain, I think it’s a great way to use new tools to attract people’s attention and that is a new tool that grabs attention and entertains people.

For example, when you show a close up video of putting the maple syrup on the pancakes or a cut in a piece of a perfectly cooked steak, I think that’s how you can show people so realistically your recipe and people can see and smell almost that pancakes or steaks so they just want to grab and eat it. So I think it’s a great way to show off the best recipes you have on your blog right now. People can fully see and experience how to make it and how it will look like in the end.

Megan:

I love that you said see, and smell because videos obviously they’re all visual, but when you record and edit a really just delicious scene of food, it is almost like you can smell it. It’s like all of your senses are ignited and you’re really living in that scene and you’re just experiencing it. I think that kind of the magic of creating a good video, is igniting everybody’s senses and pulling them in so that they actually watch it and they’re intrigued and they want to make the food. That’s the whole key. I think it’s kind of hard to do that. So talk to us about how we do stand out with this style of video, because it is kind of a, I don’t want to say overdone, but kind of overdone thing. I mean, there’s so many tasty style videos circulating right now. So how do we stand out?

Veronika:

Oh, I think it’s just about trial and error. You need to find your style and see what feels better for you. If you just use one camera or a couple of cameras, you can create so many entertaining videos with the recipes. You do in a talk show, if you’re doing just a very simple tasty style video. So I think it’s a great way to stand out among other bloggers and also a lot of platforms and social media right now, they promote videos and you have more shares and engagement with your followers or new followers, new readers as well through the video.

Megan:

So you think just doing trial and error with camera angles, maybe practicing how to capture different hero shots. What else can we use that trial and error with?

Veronika:

Well, if you never created videos before, I have a few tips actually for you to start. So first of all, I think the best way is just to start with one camera and shoot overhead. So you will have the whole scene in the frame and it will be easier for you to focus on one camera and will be so much easier to edit everything. It’s always better to also start your very first video with a simple recipe that doesn’t require many steps, like a smoothie or a salad or something easy bacon recipe, for example, with less ingredients and less steps. So when you get more comfortable, then with the whole process, you can choose something fancy as well. Let’s start with a recipe with three to five ingredients, minimal props and appliances. And it will be better if no cooking over the stove involved, because that’s more complicated.

Megan:

Starting simple, I think is kind of the theme for everything in food blogging. People always dive in and think that they should tackle everything, every aspect of the business. So I think this same principle applies to video. I like that you pointed that out. Really, I mean, you could do, I mean, what’s the simplest recipe you can think of to video, I’m thinking like a, drink, a beverage, or maybe a no-bake dessert that requires three ingredients or just something really, really simple. Then once you’re comfortable, like you said, Veronika, then you can start adding some complexity. You can maybe do a baking recipe that requires more steps. You can add an extra camera and you start editing with that. So I think that’s really great advice. So what are some other tips that you have when starting out? Do you have anything else for us?

Veronika:

Well, I actually started creating videos. I think it was the end of 2017. I even didn’t have the SLR camera back then. So I just used my phone. I put it on a tripod for overhead shots. I remember the very first video I created a three ingredient coconut balls. It was very, very simple, very basic, as my very first video. It’s so interesting. It’s still my number one most popular video on the YouTube channel.

Megan:

Oh, wow.

Veronika:

I think it has the most amount of views and still brings me so much more traffic right now because of this video, though it’s very simple and the quality is not the best because it was just my smartphone.

Megan:

See, that’s just proof that you can put something out there that’s really simple. When you have no experience, you didn’t really know what you were doing back then when you started and it’s still getting traction for you today. I have a few videos like that as well on YouTube that are really, really bad. I recorded with my DSLR, but straight overhead, the music that I chose was awful and it’s just a whole train wreck. The whole thing is, Oh, just wincing through it, please don’t go look at my chili video.

Veronika:

But I think it’s so much fun right now when you’re already more comfortable with the tools and you’re looking back at the older videos, it’s so funny to look at them because they’re very basic, but they still can bring your traffic. They are still engaging. So many social media right now promote these videos. So it brings you additional traffic, additional people who notice you and starts following you.

Megan:

Yeah, I agree. It’s kind of that SEO magic that people talk about. If a post of yours is doing really well, don’t touch it. It’s kinda the same thing. I have kept my hands off of a handful of those videos for the same reason. It’s for whatever reason, there’s magic built into that video. So I haven’t touched it. I haven’t recreated it. I’ve just totally left it alone. I have chili. I think my goulash recipe too, is really old, the video that I posted for that and the amount of views I have on those are insane compared to my other videos on YouTube, I mean off the charts insane. So it’s weird. It’s kind of head scratching, but Hey, I’m just going to leave it alone. It’s working for whatever reason and you’re right. You do look back at those videos and it’s a way to see how much you’ve grown because when we created those, both you and I and everybody else when they’re creating their first videos, I thought it was pretty good. I did a pretty good job here, but now I look back and think, Oh my goodness, I’ve come so far. So it’s a good way to measure progress.

Veronika:

Yes. I think it’s the same with photography. If you look at your photos, food photos from a year ago, two years ago, it still will be a big difference compared to what you have right now.

Megan:

We’re always making progress and even writing too. I will look back at my writing and think why would I ever write that? I want to get into if you have a strategy, but before we do that, let’s talk about monetization and how we can best monetize the videos we create because we put a lot of time and a lot of energy into making them and editing them. I mean, a lot of heart goes into it. So how can we monetize them?

Veronika:

Yes. So since videos take so much more time and work to produce them and not a lot of people actually make videos because it’s just so much work. If we make videos, we still want to monetize them. There are three ways how you can do that. The very first one is through your own blog. So if you’re on Mediavine or Adthrive, you can embed these videos to your recipe pages and set it for autoplay. You can add 20 or 30% increased monthly revenue. For me personally, the videos currently bring 27% of my total ad revenue, which is crazy, if you think it’s one third of my ad revenues, just through the videos.

Megan:

I don’t know if you’re on Mediavine or Adthrive. With AdThrive, that’s the network that I use, you can actually see exactly how much revenue comes through videos alone, which is super valuable.

Veronika:

The same with me at Mediavine.

Megan:

So embedding on a blog is way number one, what is the second way?

Veronika:

Another way to make extra income is to offer videos as additional service to brands, for sponsored posts. Brands they also want to promote themselves on social media right now. On Instagram or Facebook, and they want to have their own videos using their product. So when you approach a company, you will stand out more among other bloggers if you can create a good quality tasty style video tutorial, where you can promote this brand product. Of course you’ll be able to charge more money for the sponsor video.

So I haven’t created videos for a brand in quite a number of years. Now, right now, if you were to create a video for a brand during all of this pandemic quarantine, are there different rules surrounding it or is everything pretty much the same?

Veronika:

I would not say the rules are different. If you mean the monetization, how much you would charge, it just depends not on the current situation, but probably how big your blog is, how many followers you have on social media, how much traffic you have on your own website. That will depend on how much you can charge.

Megan:

Okay. So do you work with brands a lot?

Veronika:

Not a lot, but I do work with them and created a few videos actually for different brands. Of course the amount, how much you can charge for regular sponsored posts, compared to the same post but with a video it’s very different. You can almost double it.

Megan:

Oh, that’s great. I can see where if somebody worked with brands that would be really valuable and yeah, they are extra work, but if you can double what you get back from them, that would be amazing. So what is number three?

Veronika:

Videos for other food bloggers. If you’re a smaller blogger and you don’t make enough money through advertising or sponsorship, you can offer video services to other bloggers who cannot make the videos, or they just simply don’t have time for it. This is actually what I used to do. I created so many videos for other popular bloggers that allowed me to make a full-time income back then. I’m not doing that anymore, but I used to create videos for over a year for other people.

Megan:

That’s great. Okay. So this is great because I think especially as bloggers are kind of just finding their way and getting into their own successes in the business world, they do need outlet. They need other sources of income sometimes. So video I’ve always said this, it’s a really, really great way to tap into a little bit extra income so that you can keep blogging and get to that place you want to be. So how do you find the business and how much business is out there to be had?

Veronika:

Oh, it’s unlimited honestly. I just promoted myself back then two years ago or a year and a half. I promote myself on Facebook among food bloggers, group communities, and a lot of bloggers. They just don’t have time to create the videos because they’re so busy. They also have family, maybe some other jobs and they just want to outsource as much work as they can. That’s why VAs are so popular right now, or outsourcing videos are so popular because just people don’t have time for it. This is a great weight for you just to find extra work and add extra income.

Megan:

So I’ve always wondered about the logistics of creating video for other people. Is it just kind of a nightmare or is it something that just takes a while to get into? I mean, as far as buying groceries and sorting through the recipe. Talk us through that a little bit. How does that go?

Veronika:

Okay. So I think it’s just, when you create a routine and you set your own rules, how you usually work, other bloggers, they just follow it. It’s not really that hard. When you start working with the blogger, you just send them a list of what you offer, how it works, all your step by step instructions, how the payment system works. Then you agree on the terms you choose from the recipes. Usually I help the bloggers to choose the recipes because it’s still more comfortable for me to recreate their recipe and show it off because I never made it before. You just feel my video, like you would do it for yourself. I honestly, I love that. I love working with bloggers and I made so many friends among this community. I think it was an amazing experience for me.

Megan:

I love that not only was it a source of revenue for you, but that you actually saw it as a way to network and to make friends. I’m sure that you probably still have relationships with those people. So that’s something that we don’t think of, that this is an opportunity to really grow inside the community and get to know people.

Veronika:

Absolutely. I think the food blog community in general, they’re so nice people and they’re so kind and always encouraging. When you actually start working with them, you make friends with them. So you’re starting to become friends on a completely different level and help each other and encourage and just help each other to grow in a different way.

Megan:

It’s so true. Food bloggers are amazing. Once you start really liking connecting with them, for me anyway, I just see how hardworking and strong, and they’re just filled with passion. I don’t know, there’s so much that I could say about food bloggers that I love, but working with them or even doing something like I’m doing, hosting a podcast and talking to people regularly, it helps me so much just to get into their world and to build friendships. There’s something just really, really valuable about that. I love that you have tapped into that too. So let’s go back just a little bit. So finding business, if somebody does want to branch out and create tasty style videos for other food bloggers, you mentioned like just putting yourself out there on Facebook groups. Is that how you mainly found business and are there other ways to find it?

Veronika:

I think the first step is just put yourself out there and promote yourself. Maybe you can create a page on your blog and show examples of the videos you created before. Write a little bit about what you can do? What type of videos you create, how long they are, is music recorded, is the ingredients included. Then after you start creating a couple of first videos for bloggers, they start to promote your company already to other food blogger, friends as well. That’s how you grow word of mouth, I think.

Megan:

Once the momentum gets rolling, I’m sure word of mouth really, really helps out. What about figuring out how much to charge? I think that’s a hard thing to do for a lot of us. Do I go high? Do I go low? How do you work through that? How do you find somewhere to start?

Veronika:

Ooh, that’s a good question. When I started, I really was charging basically nothing because I just needed more experience. I didn’t know how it works. So I was just doing the basic videos for the first probably 10 bloggers, but such a low amount of money. Basically it was an exchange of videos with experience. I just grew through that. So I started to increase the prices. I think you just find a good balance between what you can charge and what other bloggers can afford to pay you, because you don’t want to spend five, six, $700 just on one video for another blog. It’s a lot of money. At the same time, when you create the video, you still need to cover your own costs because this is your business and you need to pay the salary. You need to pay all the expenses, you need to pay for the ingredients. So yes, it’s just finding the balance, I think. The same as you’re finding a price for a sponsorship, you can do a sponsorship as gift exchange, they will send you a product and that will be enough for you. Or you will charge $500 or a thousand dollars. I guess it’s all about how much you can afford to charge.

Megan:

Yeah. That makes sense. As you get more experience, obviously you can start charging a little bit more and once you’re confident and your skills are more fine tuned. So I have a few questions for you about video and social media, because once you create a video, yes it goes on your blog, embed it there. Then YouTube, what is your strategy for putting it everywhere else?

Veronika:

I love actually promoting my new recipes that come out through the videos, through different social platforms and almost all of them. They show a higher engagement rate for videos than for photos right now, surprisingly. For example, for Instagram, they start just with sharing photos and in the past few years, they started integrating and promoting more videos, then it was IGTV. Now stories are so popular. So the engagement rate for videos is about, for me, I think I was just looking at my analytics the other day. For the video engagement rate, it was 39% while my photos engagement was only 14%. So it’s more than double the engagement rate. I think the same with Facebook, my favorite way to promote through Facebook is just to share these videos on Facebook groups. For example, I create Instant Pot recipes and they have a number of videos for Instant Pot recipes. So I’d like to share them in the groups that share the same interests and you’ll be surprised, but you will have such a good amount of traffic from sharing a video versus a photo on these groups.

Megan:

Are you talking about groups like the big Instant Pot groups that have been formed by somebody else or groups that you form yourself?

Veronika:

Other groups, like Instant Pot community, I believe. There are a number of Instant Pot group recipes. So it doesn’t have to be Instant Pot. It can be any other group.

Megan:

But those Instant Pot groups are huge. They are massive. I actually was tapping into that for a little while, but then I just stopped because you know, there’s a million things on my list, but wow. I mean, if you post a video within one of those absolutely massive Instant Pot groups, you get quite a bit of traction from that.

Veronika:

Yes. You will have a lot of traffic from sharing these videos. Also I gained a lot of followers on my Facebook account as well, through these videos.

Megan:

That’s something to think about too. I feel like Facebook is growing so slowly, at least my page is growing slowly. So any way that I can get an increase in my numbers, I’m all over. So once you post your blog, you go to YouTube, for sure. Right? You post every single video to YouTube.

Veronika:

Yes. I post on YouTube. I post on Instagram, Facebook of course. Pinterest, also Pinterest started to promote videos right now and a lot of bloggers are doing it and actually my top five pins right now that bring the most traffic. It’s all videos.

Megan:

Oh, very interesting. I know that Pinterest is really rewarding for people who post videos on a video pin. So I’m curious to know what kind of formatting you use because I know some people are doing that split vertical, where they put a square video and then they’ll put it like a title or doing more of an IGTV format where it’s just like one big vertical format. What is the preferred method?

Veronika:

I think for everybody it works differently. They have different strategies for me personally, regular square videos work the best, but they talk to a number of bloggers and they said for everybody it works again differently for some people you need to have some text over the video, other people like to buy three, four months it just probably depends. But again, for me, it’s the regular square video.

Megan:

Those are doing well for you. Then how much content should we put on Pinterest that is video versus photos.

Veronika:

Most of my pins, they are still photos for now, but I try to put at least 10 videos a week just to keep it going and have the momentum to get more traffic. Of course these videos will repeat over the time because you don’t have hundreds of videos on your blog, but that still works.

Megan:

Does that go for Instagram too? I know that most people post photos and then kind of sprinkle in some videos here and there is that what we do on Instagram as well?

Veronika:

Yes. I’m trying to play around right now with the different formats and see what will work for me, what strategy to choose. I know that a lot of people say that the carousel works the best right now. So I’m trying to play around and put, for example, the video first and put a couple of photos after that in a carousel. That’s been working really well. The regular square videos, they work well, but they have to be under a minute long. So that’s also probably a small issue right now with all the platforms, because every single platform, they have different preferred format, whether it’s a square, whether it’s two by three or it’s a horizontal video.

Megan:

It’s fun. Isn’t it, trying to adhere to like a million different video formats? It’s like how many formats can we make from a single video production?

Veronika:

I usually just create three different formats. The first one, it’s a regular horizontal that I put on my blog and on YouTube, then you can just cut out the address and create a square video that goes to Facebook and Instagram. Also I sometimes create two by three for Instagram IGTV. So that works.

Megan:

I’m just waiting for triangular platforms to come out so we can make triangular formatted videos or circles or something just off the wall. I wouldn’t actually be totally surprised if something like that happened. How sad is that? Like, oh, okay, here we go. Diving into circle format.

Veronika:

You know, it just might sound so complicated and overwhelming in the beginning to create all the videos and create all the different formats. But once you start creating them, it’s really not that hard. It’s actually very entertaining to make the video and then edit them. There is one trick actually that I’m doing right now to kill two birds at once. I had an audit with Casey Markee. I think everybody is having the audit with him right now. He really encourages you to do step by step process photos of the recipe. So what I do is just, I shoot a video and then take screenshots of the process steps and I post the screenshots as step by step photos. So you don’t have to do separate photos and a video for the same recipe. Just do it all at once.

Megan:

That’s really great advice. Anytime you can kill two birds with one stone, I am all in. I think most food bloggers would agree with that because we have enough to do, right?

Veronika:

Oh yes, absolutely.

Megan:

That’s a great tip. I love that you mentioned doing a carousel with both video and photo. I typically don’t think to do that. I think you do one or the other, but why not? You could put a video in a carousel and then put photos after it, like step by step or maybe hero shots or something. But that was a really great tip that I’m going to steal from you.

Veronika:

I hope it works for you as well.

Megan:

So I was going to ask you about IGTV cause you’ve mentioned it a few times. How important is IGTV? Because it’s one of those things where I think a lot of bloggers really dove into it and loved it. A lot were , I’m holding off. I don’t know if it’s going to stick around, but it is still around. What are your thoughts on it?

Veronika:

I think Instagram and people, they have a love, hate relationship with it. At one time it was so popular and everybody was creating these IGTV videos. Then nobody really was interested in that. It was another wave of IGTV. Right now I think it’s dying off again a little bit, but again, when we create videos for IGTV, we can use the same footage to post it on the stories as well. So again, you’re using the same video, but you’re posting different formats, which are different ways to engage your audience.

Megan:

It’s a good point. You can use the same thing for stories because it’s the same format. I’ve posted a little bit to IGTV. I guess I haven’t seen a ton of traction. I see more attraction from videos that I post directly to my profile. What do you find? Do you get more or less traction on IGTV

Veronika:

The same with me. I think the most engagement they come from their feet, but for now, at least that’s what works for me right now. As I said, my engagement rate for the videos is so much higher than for the photos. So I think it really works for me.

Megan:

Yeah. That number, it was quite a difference. Wasn’t it? Like 15 vs 40 something?

Veronika:

Oh 39 versus 14.

Megan:

That’s crazy. Crazy good. How many photos versus videos should we be putting in our feed on Instagram right now?

Veronika:

Well, it depends how many videos you create, first. I’m trying to create two videos a week right now. So I’m trying to focus more on the video and create, if not for every recipe, but for every other restaurant, I’m creating the video right now. So I’m trying to post it and promote more. I really saw the difference since I started doing it. I have more traffic, I have more engagement on social media. People comment, more people share, more special on Facebook and they just come to your website, your blog, and actually create the recipe itself. So I found it very useful.

Megan:

That’s great. So all around you get more engagement, you get more people interested, you get more comments and not just on Instagram, but all over.

Veronika:

All over. I think every single social platform right now, they’re slowly transitioning. Not slowly. They’ll already get transitioned, I think to the videos, just trying to promote it more.

Megan:

Okay. So we’ve covered videos on Pinterest, Instagram. Now let’s talk about Facebook a little bit, because I think there was a huge peak of video love on Facebook a handful of years ago. There was a time when I felt like everyone was putting video up and immediately got a million views or, I mean just a ridiculous number of views. Now it’s not like that. So how important do you think those tasty style videos are on Facebook now versus the longer format and how much video content should we be putting on Facebook?

Veronika:

I think Facebook right now is trying to promote more videos that are three minutes and longer. I never created such a long video before. So I cannot say how it works for me all. Maybe it’s about a minute, minute and a half long. It’s like a tasty style video. But I have to tell you that Facebook brings me very, very good traffic, just because of the videos. When I post photos, I don’t get as much engagement from people. But as I mentioned before, when you post a video specially in the groups, whether it’s for Instant Pot or other recipe groups, a lot of people share the video because it’s more, again, engagement, entertaining, they comment, they like it. They go to your profile, they start following you. I think this is my number one reason actually creating videos to share it on Facebook. Facebook brings me so much more traffic than the regular photos.

Megan:

Because of those groups, or do you get a lot of traffic too, from your profile or from your page?

Veronika:

I have quite a good track from my pages. Well, but I think groups actually still work better for me because you still share in the groups that are interested in that specific topic. If it’s again the same Instant Pot, everybody wants a recipe with the Instant Pot. So they already want to see a video. They want to see your recipe. That actually helps you to bring the traffic to your website.

Megan:

That makes sense. My team and I continue to post videos on Facebook, my Facebook page, just because I feel like I shouldn’t stop. I’ve built a little momentum. It’s very slow, but I just feel like I need to keep going with it and to stop throwing all of my hard work into the garbage. So I feel it is beneficial to keep at it. Right. I mean, don’t just get frustrated and just throw in the towel. You gotta keep going.

Veronika:

Oh, absolutely. If the people saw your video already a couple of times, if you just keep sharing the same video they’ll already have seen it so they won’t be as interested compared to if you post new videos at least once a week or two weeks. So you still keep engaging and entertaining these people.

Megan:

That’s a good point. Keeping engagement and entertainment up is something to keep at the forefront of our minds. I think because it can be a tedious thing for us. Oh, here’s another video. Posting another video onto Facebook. So keeping in mind that people are coming to our pages to get entertained and to get valuable information. So is there anything to talk about social media and videos before we move on? I was going to ask you about older content versus new, but is there anything to cover with social media first?

Veronika:

No, I think it’s just creating videos. It’s a great way to use them on social media platforms just to engage your audience and entertain them versus just using the classic photos that most of the bloggers do anyway already.

Megan:

Yeah. And like mixing it up, throwing videos in once in a while, at least at minimum. Okay. So let’s talk about new content versus old. You mentioned that you were trying to do two new videos a week and posting that all over, different platforms obviously, but what about our older content? So for those of us who’ve been creating videos for a handful of years. How often do we dip into that older content? Do I want an Instagram feed, for example, that is filled with video if I have enough or not?

Veronika:

Well, when you talk about the blog, I think if you’re updating your older recipe already and just trying to improve your SEO, I think it’s a great way just to add this video to the recipe, to make it more appealing to your followers and readers as well. In a very short amount of time, in less than a minute, you can show off the whole recipe, how to make it from start to finish and show all the steps and then engage in a way. So it’s not going to hurt you to create a video anyway. And yes, I think it just helps to add new videos to your older content as well. Because even if the recipe is already popular, adding a video will make it even more engaging to other people. So I’m trying to create videos to new recipes that I create and still making a few videos to my older posts as well to update them.

Megan:

Do you have a strategy for that? do you go to Google analytics and just see what your top posts are and kind of go down the line from most visited to least? Or what is your strategy with that for older content?

Veronika:

Yes. I check my most popular top 20 most popular recipes usually and try to update them. Actually about a year ago I had a recipe for chocolate cupcakes with caramel, and nobody even was looking at this recipe before. It was an old recipe with the old photos. So I redid the whole recipe, did new photos and created a video for it. Right now I think it’s my top three on Google. I think it’s just a great idea, always to go through your older recipes and try to update them and add something, whether you add new information, new photos and creating video is just also very engaging.

Megan:

Let’s talk about blog posts for a second, because I was talking to a few blogger friends recently and they were expressing, as was I, just discouragement around creating videos that were hands and pan style and putting it on our blogs because we didn’t know if that was actually what people were wanting to see when they came to a blog post. They want the recipe, but then we hear all the time and you are proof of this too, because you said that when you added a video, it actually rose and ranked. Is it adding value to people’s experiences with our blog posts to have a tasty style video embedded in the post? I don’t know. I’m torn on that. So I’m willing to hear your thoughts.

Veronika:

I think, yes. At least with my own experience, if I go to somebody’s website and I read through the recipe and usually I want to see the video of the recipe and see how it’s done, especially it’s more complicated. I watch a lot of videos of other bloggers on the website as well, just for my own purpose to make their recipes at home. It’s just the easier way to show off. It’s like creating photos step by step of how you create the recipe to make it easier and more visual for people or you write step by step instructions and make all the notes, how to make the recipes. And not only the way just to show and make it easier for people to understand and visualize how the recipe should come together.

Megan:

It’s another format for people who are visual in that way. If people like videos and respond well to them, then it’s good to have it in the post, I guess. But if not, they can keep scrolling and they can look at the process shots or they can go down to the recipe. So I always think it doesn’t hurt. I mean, it’s certainly not going to hurt you. If anything, it’s going to add value, but again, it’s so much work. We almost want proof. I need to see this as working, which is kind of ridiculous because you can’t ever prove something like that unless it’s making you money with revenue. But I did that same kind of strategy you talked about. Taking my top 20 posts and just going through starting at the top one and going down and creating videos for each one and adding it to the post.

And it did help. Two years ago I started doing that. All of those recipes that I focused on then are now in my most popular. So I guess there’s something to that. So we talked in the very beginning of this interview about the really old videos that we create to start. So what do you think about my chili video that I told you about? It’s killing it on YouTube, it always has, it’s been like crazy, the numbers. So do I try, do I try to recreate it or do I just leave it?

Veronika:

You know what? I had the same question actually last month because I wanted to reshoot a couple of my older videos that are not very attractive. It was one of the first videos, the very, very basic shot with my smartphone, but you know what, I looked at my statistics, analytics and they still bring traffic. They still bring engagement and I just decided to leave them the way they are. I think as soon as they will start bringing me traffic, I will update the videos and right back and just focus on my new recipes.

Megan:

I like that. Obviously it’s doing well and it’s like one of those just untouchable things that maybe you should leave alone. I think I’ll just leave that alone. We have covered so much and I’ve just been totally absorbing all of this, taking it in and I’m feeling a little bit inspired now. Thank you. Is there anything that you feel like we have not touched on regarding tasty style videos that you think we should before we start wrapping up?

Veronika:

I think we talked about pretty much everything. We talk about social media, how they try to promote your videos and engage your audience, which is a great way to bring traffic to your website and through that you also will be able to monetize. So if you never made videos before, you definitely should give it a try and I’m pretty sure once you start being more comfortable with it, you will love the process itself. The way I do. I think it’s so much fun to create a video and then edit it. You really can just repurpose the same video for different social media platforms to show off to your readers, to attract new clients or followers.

Megan:

I think it is very rewarding to create a video and put all of the energy and love into it and then edit it and see it produced. It’s, wow, it’s really cool. Especially the first few times you do it, almost can’t believe that you created that. Then you grow so quickly too, I’ve found from that first awful video to now. Things progress really fast and you really do learn quickly. I think we should all take your advice Veronika to just start small, start with what you have in front of you, even if it’s your smartphone from overhead, do it, just start it and see if you like it, see how your audience responds to it and then just increase your angles or your equipment or whatever, just start improving your game a little bit. But yeah, I think that was pretty much all I wanted to cover. I’m trying to think if there’s anything else. Okay. One last question. Tasty style versus long form. I know long form video is really gaining momentum right now, but that’s just like a debate right now. Like what do I put my efforts toward? Because long form obviously takes longer. Tasty style you can knock out a little bit more quickly, but is there a value there? So what are your thoughts on all of that?

Veronika:

I think long form, they definitely bring more value, especially on Facebook right now. I know that Facebook promotes them better than shorter videos, but again, I never really created longer videos before. So I cannot say anything about my experience compared to my shorter videos, but I know that a lot of bloggers have a good success with longer videos right now on YouTube and Facebook. So this is actually my next step. What I want to accomplish, try to create a longer video and maybe create like a cooking show type video, just play around with it and try something new because food blogging, it’s all about trying something new. First, we are trying with photos, we try new recipes, we try with videos. We just try new ways to engage people. I think we should have fun with it.

Megan:

It certainly doesn’t hurt to experiment. I think your whole insight about just tasty style is kind of the way to start, I think is really good for us to hear because it’s easy to dive into. It’s engaging. It’s captivating. It captures us Oh, this is really fun. Then if you want to experiment with more doing long form or cooking show style, then yeah. Dive into that. But I think that tasty style is a really great place to start. I have appreciated all of your insights today and I’m just really grateful that we had this conversation. So thank you for being here Veronika.

Veronika:

Oh, thank you for inviting me.

Megan:

Yes. I like to ask all my guests if they have a favorite quote or words of inspiration for food bloggers. So do you have anything to share with us?

Veronika:

My favorite quote from Oscar Wilde is “Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken.” I think it’s such a good way to remind yourself that when we are trying to create something new on the blog and to be able to look at all these inspiring food bloggers, and sometimes you always have this temptation to copy their style or copied their writing style of photography. But we need to remind ourselves that we are not those bloggers and we have our own way, our own blog, that we should not compare ourselves with other people. Just try to find your own voice, what you like. If you love videos, just create more videos. If you don’t really like them, continue to photography and just be yourself.

Megan:

Oh, I love that. It’s such a great message for food bloggers because there are so many of us and it’s such a saturated place to be. So I think that is something we all need to hear. So thank you for sharing that. Thanks again, Veronika. Before we go, tell my listeners the best place they can find you online.

Veronika:

You can find on my website, Veronikaskitchen.com and I share a lot of simple and delicious recipes using very simple ingredients. So yes, I’ll be happy to see you on my website.

Megan:

Yes, everyone go check it out. We will put together some show notes for this episode. If you want to check that out too, you can go to eatblogtalk.com/Veronika and Veronika is spelled with a K. So thanks again, Veronick for being here and thank you so much for listening today, food bloggers.

Outro:

We’re glad you could join us on this episode of Eat Blog Talk. For more resources based on today’s discussion, as well as show notes and an opportunity to be on a future episode of the show, be sure to head to eatblogtalk.com. If you feel that hunger for information, we’ll be here to feed you on Eat Blog Talk.


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Megan
Megan

Megan started her food blog Pip and Ebby in 2010 and food blogging has been her full-time career since 2013. Her passion for blogging has grown into an intense desire to help fellow food bloggers find the information, insight, and community they need in order to find success.

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