Video Should Be Part of Every Club Website. Here’s How to Work With It

I think every club and district website could benefit from the addition of video, and WordPress makes it easy to embed video clips from YouTube, Vimeo, and other services in a page or blog post.

Ideally, that video should showcase the character of your club and the talents of its members. The clips you can get from Toastmasters International may be useful but will be more generic. I generally recommend uploading video to YouTube (more details below) and then embedding it in your website. On WordPress, that’s as easy as copy-and-paste.

Copy-and-paste to add video

There is a YouTube content block for WordPress, but it will be inserted into the editor automatically if you just paste a YouTube video link on a blank line — that’s the way I typically do it. Copy and paste shortcut keys are CTRL-C / CTRL-V on Windows or CMD-C / CMD-V on a Mac.

Letting members see video of their own speeches is also a powerful educational tool, and users of Toastmost or the WordPress for Toastmasters software can take advantage of a YouTube speech video sharing tool built for that purpose.

Video Editing Basics

Before you share a video for marketing purposes, you may need to do some editing. You can a little do from within YouTube Studio’s built-in video editor (details below), but for many tasks, it’s better to work with video editor software installed on your computer.

One example that comes up a lot these days is extracting a specific speech video from the recording of an entire meeting or event conducted in an online or hybrid format.

Here is an example of creating a separate video for a specific speech from the Zoom recording of an Online Presenters Toastmasters meeting.

For this tutorial, I demoed video editing principles using the Lightworks software that’s available for Mac and Windows. The free version is perfect for doing basic editing, including adding titles and transitions as shown here, whereas the pro version offers features you might need for a professional film or television project. In fact, it’s been used on professional products you might know, such as the movie The King’s Speech.

For Toastmasters purposes, you can stick with the basics provided by the free version of Lightworks software or other free options. I’m linking to tutorials for some of the free editors:

The user interface may be different, but the timeline editing concept is the same across many digital video editors.

I typically work with a paid product, Camtasia, that’s ideal for creating and editing software demo videos, but many of the features of Lightworks (and iMovie) are as good or better.

Sharing Content on YouTube

The upload button is in the upper right corner of the YouTube screen.

If you have a YouTube account, you can upload content to YouTube. Videos can be set to public, private, or unlisted. Unlisted means they can be accessed by anyone who has the link but will not show up in search results or in the public listings for your channel. I use the unlisted option to share speech videos with speakers for educational purposes semi-privately. If they did a great job, I may then encourage them to allow the video to be shared publicly.

I recommend you create a YouTube brand account that can be accessed by multiple club members, rather than posting to your own personal account. That way, the account becomes an asset for the club rather than any one member. Here’s a tutorial on creating a brand account.

YouTube’s Built-in Editor

Once you upload a video to YouTube, you can take advantage of the video editor built into YouTube Studio.

This is particularly handy for trimming out some of the meeting or event preliminaries that replay viewers may not care about or removing other content, for example muting copyrighted music or blurring private information such as an email address that was shown onscreen.

The editor built into YouTube Studio won’t allow you to do everything you can with Lightworks or iMovie, but it allows you to add YouTube-specific elements such as information cards and an end screen.

If you’ve never used YouTube Studio, see this overview tutorial. The video below covers more specifics on what the built-in editor can and cannot do.

Show Don’t Tell

If people have never experienced the laughter and applause of a Toastmasters meeting, video can bring home the value of the experience and show them why they ought to be part of it. If a speaker is unaware of their ums and ahs and awkward bodily movements, watching a replay of their speech can be a powerful tool for helping them improve.

On both ends of the spectrum — celebrating excellence and helping members learn and improve — video can help. And by learning to work with it proficiently, you can be a big help to your club.

* This software is offered "for Toastmasters" but not is provided by or endorsed by Toastmasters International. The use of Toastmasters brand assets (with proper disclaimers) in website designs has been reviewed by the Toastmasters International brand compliance team.