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Create DIY Video Content with a Purpose: An Interview with Dana of Create to Donate

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Create to Donate on Jumprope

Dana of @createtodonate is focused on giving back and supporting others. We caught up with Dana to hear how she creates video content to support this mission.

First, tell us a little more about you and your blog

My blog was born out of a failed attempt at building an online marketplace for makers to sell old inventory while benefiting nonprofits. It was called Goods Giving Back, and it was set up to immediately donate proceeds (minus the cost of goods) to the nonprofit of your choice. This failed because people have a very specific model of what giving back is. It’s harder to understand philanthropy at this smaller, bite-sized scale.

Along the way I started a sister site (and my current blog), Create to Donate. I publish tutorials that inspire makers to make & donate items, while also educating nonprofits on how to engage with makers. 

What was your video experience before using Jumprope?

I had only made one video, and that was about five years ago. I knew video was king—in fact I wrote a blog post about the mistakes I made while creating that first YouTube video—but at that time video editing took so long that it just wasn’t worth it for my business.

What inspired you to start using Jumprope?

When I joined Mediavine then learned about Jumprope, it just made sense to me. I liked that Jumprope was a smaller startup, which felt exciting, and the tool worked for me. I knew it wouldn’t take me as long as other programs. Initially, it was more time consuming than I expected, until I figured out my workflow, because I like to be really thorough. 

I liked that I could start by just using photos. Then I began to film video and add voice over. I received immediate value from using the photos, and that continued to increase over time because Jumprope allowed me to gradually add video.

What made you want to start creating video content?

After I joined Mediavine I realized video was now essential for my business. In order to be competitive, you need video. It’s really important as a business owner to understand what you’re willing to do (and not do) for your business, and to find tools that work for you.

Jumprope happened to be the right tool for me at the exact right time. For other creators, I recommend being open-minded, and don’t let assumptions of something being difficult get in the way!

What’s your top tip for creators who are hesitant to create video?

Don’t let the fear of publishing stop you from creating. You don’t have to publish everything, so my number one tip is just try it. 

Remember that the people you want engaging with you should be the type of people who afford you grace. If you are bringing value, even if you make a mistake, your audience isn’t going to care. 

My other tip is that if you’re a private person like me, don’t let that stop you. You can create successful videos without showing your face.

Where do you like to share your Jumprope downloads?

I always share to YouTube, and I share to my blog in a few ways: 

1) Embed the Jumprope directly

2) Add the “YouTube” horizontal download to my Mediavine player to monetize

3) Embed the YouTube video

I also share to IGTV, TikTok, and Pinterest. The Pinterest downloads are a no brainer! Easy extra Pins that I don’t have to do any work for.

What’s your filming setup like?

I film in a room with good natural light. For overhead shots, I have storage buckets that support a plank of wood that I rest my phone on. For shots with my sewing machine, I use a small tripod to hold my phone.

What’s your process like for planning a video?

I always walk through the project first. I go through the motions without actually sewing anything, which helps to catch steps I might have missed. I’ve found it’s sometimes better to break the process down into more separate steps than you initially think. 

I usually film first and take notes on each card of the Jumprope. Sometimes it’s complete sentences, other times it’s just notes that I’ll edit later. 

When I add voiceover, I watch my video and use Notepad on my computer to write a script. Notepad is as simple as it gets, so there’s no need to worry about formatting. This way I can read from my computer while recording voiceover in Jumprope on my phone. I use the bulk of this script as the step by step text in my blog post as well to streamline my process.

I think about timing so I can keep it as short as possible. There’s a balance of allowing someone to understand the nuance of what you’re teaching, while keeping it short enough to keep them engaged.

Favorite Jumprope you’ve created?

I probably had the most fun with the Tootsie Pop vinyl pouch.

My favorite Jumprope overall is about how to use a chemo port pillow, because that’s the value I like to add in the world. It’s only one card long, but many people have found that video on my blog and now they understand why port pillows are important. 

I was also really proud of the success my 3D mask tutorial had.

Any final thoughts about Jumprope you’d like to share? 

Jumprope is a class act. They’re very supportive, customer-focused, and really keep their audience informed so they can succeed.

Follow Dana! 

Follow Dana @createtodonate on Jumprope and check out her blog, Instagram, YouTube, TikTok, and Pinterest.

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