Tutorial: How To Turn Any Text Quote Into An Awesome Video In 15 Minutes
Imagine being able to turn any quote into a short-form video clip like the one above within 15 minutes for free?
That’s what I figured out how to do today, and the video above is my proof.
In this post, I’ll show you exactly how to as well.
This video format is a big deal, and it has only recently become possible with AI.
Short-form video curation is what helped me 6x my LinkedIn engagement in 6 months, and it’s what inspired me to create this newsletter.
Creating quote clips of experts is 8x faster and leverages the proven power of quotes and short-form video, and complements interviews and speeches that I’ve been curating.
More so, many YouTubers are already succeeding by focusing on this content format. Below are a few channels that were my inspiration to explore it more:
RedFrost Motivation (1.87M subscribers)
Quotes (1.17M subscribers)
Wisdom Of The Ages (234k subscribers)
Quotation & Motivation (112k subscribers)
Motiversity (108K subscribers)
With that said, let’s jump in…
Today’s Game Plan
By the end of this post, I will:
Explain why I think that this is a promising short-form video format (especially for people just getting started with short-form video clip curation)
Share more on how I identify new thought leadership trends like this one
Share how you can create your own quote video clips as well (for paid subscribers)
But before I get to these, let me tell you why I even did this experiment today…
The Power Of Idea Connoisseurship
If you’ve been reading this newsletter regularly, you know that I am a big fan of Idea Connoisseurship (a term I coined).
Idea Connoisseurship is the forgotten and foundational step that is critical to success as a thought leader.
More specifically, it is the process of identifying and analyzing top performing content in order to:
Develop your taste (understand what you like and don’t like)
Develop your craft (understand what works and what doesn’t)
Develop better strategy (understand what works and what doesn’t)
I’ve spent thousands of hours as a connoisseur of titles, ideas, visuals, quotes, tweets, curators, short-form video, book hooks, and much more over the last eight years. This should give you an idea of how helpful I have found this process. Nothing speaks louder than where people actually spend their time.
At a deeper level, I’ve spent so much time on Idea Connoisseurship because billions of people are posting content online everyday, and the performance of those “experiments” is available for everyone to see. So rather than reinventing the wheel one trial & error post a time, I study what’s already worked and then figure out ways to make it my own by mixing and matching. In other words, I “stand on the shoulders of giants” and then evolve what works.
If my style/approach to thought leadership is unique, it is only unique because I have such a large quantity and diversity of influences that I’m building upon.
With that said, here’s the backstory on how connoisseurship brought me to today’s post…
How I First Learned About Video Clip Curation
I first learned about the power of video clips from the Evan Carmichael YouTube channel while I was connoisseuring:
Over the last 15 years, Carmichael has curated 7,300 videos, which have resulted in 3.7M subscribers and 600M+ views on YouTube.
Based on seeing this success, I decided to experiment with finding relevant clips on my YouTube channel back in 2020. In total, I curated a few dozen clips.
I even had one video generate 1M+ views…
But, in the end, I stopped curating for several reasons:
I was juggling too many other balls. Focusing on curation took away time from writing long-form articles and working on my course.
I wasn’t seeing enough momentum. I wasn’t seeing the average engagement on videos increase.
It wasn’t authentic. I was paying two freelancers to find and title the videos on topics I write about, but I wasn’t choosing the videos that I was most excited about.
I didn’t enjoy it. Because I didn’t particularly enjoy the process of managing other people to create content under my name, I was more willing to let it go.
YouTube wasn’t my main platform. I didn’t really have much of a presence on YouTube, and I didn’t want to learn the intricacies of a new platform when I already had so much on my plate.
I wasn’t sure it would help my reputation as a thought leader. I wasn’t sure that just sharing video clips of others people without context would help people nearly as much my long-form writing.
So, I thought my video clip curation days were behind me. But, then something happened…
The Pivot That Changed Everything
It wasn’t until February of this year, when I was doing more connoisseurship, that I came across two Twitter video clip curators who were getting thousands of likes on every post:
Below is an example of one of Billy’s posts…
This is when I had my lightbulb moment.
What if I started doing video clip curation again, but this time with a few changes:
Post on LinkedIn instead of YouTube. I chose LinkedIn because this is where I had experience and a following.
Add text breakdown to the clip like Nathan and Billy do. While most people on YouTube don’t read the video description, most people on LinkedIn do. This breakdown gives me a chance to demonstrate my expertise and add value to the clip.
Do the curation myself. Doing the research and writing myself improved the quality of my curation, made it more authentic to me, and made it fun.
Integrate the clips into my long-form writing. Rather than just curating popular posts on my topic, I focused on video clips as part of my research process for long-form articles and as a way to explore my curiosity. You can see my first long-form article with 13+ video clips here.
Focus. This time I cleared out more of my calendar and made it a priority. I didn’t want to pursue a good strategy and fail simply because I didn’t put in the necessary amount of time.
The results have been life-changing:
My LinkedIn channel grew by 6x within a few months.
This gave me the confidence to create a newsletter based, in large part, on sharing video clips.
We’re now up 325 subscribers in nine weeks, and I envision focusing on the newsletter for years as one of my two main focuses—the other focus being our flagship program. If we keep up the same pace, we will be at 1,500+ subscribers within a year.
All of this brings us to what I’m doing now. A few weeks ago, I became more deliberate about connoisseuring video clip curators on YouTube…
I Found A Small Group Of Video Clip Curators Of Experts Specializing In Quote/Excerpt Clips
I researched 58 successful channels and plugged data and observations on each channel into a Notion database with 20 columns (a link to this database is available for paid subscribers at the bottom of this post).
This is when I started to notice different variations on video clip production that were getting hundreds of thousands or millions of views. For example, here are three of the variations I noticed:
While I loved the first two videos, I saw that it would take me a long time to produce them or it would be expensive to hire a video editor to produce them for me. I’m not quite ready for that.
With that said, the Quote Clip video (#3 above) was particularly fascinating for me on a few levels….
The Power Of Quote Clips
With quote clips, the creator finds great text quotes and/or excerpts and turns them into videos. This approach has a few benefits…
It’s 8x faster. Producing each video clip typically takes 10-15 minutes, rather than the 2 hours it takes me to find video clip interviews and speeches now.
There is a lot of amazing content I read in a text format that I never share. It’s easier to find great text quotes and excerpts in books or online from any expert than it is to find a great video of them. But I often don’t share my excerpts because they’re not strong enough to stand on their own as social media posts.
There are a lot of successful quote channels. While this doesn’t guarantee that I’ll be successful, it does show me that these clips can perform well. If you’re a paid subscriber of this newsletter, you get access to my connoisseurship database, where you can see the stats on the channels. The link is at the bottom of this post.
AI text-to-speech is now indistinguishable from the human voice. This is a big deal, because when I did research on the voice actor used in one of the channels, I learned that it would cost me $50-$100 per video clip to hire an actor. This high-quality, free AI voice talent only became available in the last few months!
I can append these quote videos to my other video clips. I can now append related quotes to the video clips I’ve been curating and create more indepth videos.
Quotes are virality machines. Almost every sentence that was ever uttered was forgotten soon after. Successful quotes are those rare sentences that last for generation after generation in country after country. In other words, when it comes to sentences and human attention, only the fittest survive, and quotes are the fittest. Therefore, packaging your articles and ideas with relevant and proven quotes is a simple, powerful hack to increase virality. If you read any of my articles on Medium, you’ll see many quotes.
Bottom line: Creating quote clips is a promising way to share what you learn as you learn it, in a way that generates engagement on social media. This is promising enough for me to experiment with it in the coming weeks, and promising enough for me to share it with you now.
Tutorial: How To Turn Any Text Quote Into An Awesome Video In The Next 30 Minutes
If you’d like to experiment with quote clips, you can follow the step-by-step tutorial below. I estimate this tutorial will save you 2-3 hours of trial & error figuring out what the right tools are and how to use them.
This tutorial also includes:
My pick for the #1 tool to create realistic AI text-to-speech for free
My pick for the #1 tool to edit quote videos for free (which includes a library of background audio)
My template for adding sound and smoke effects (along with a link to other motion backgrounds) to your videos
Database of the 58 other video clip curators I connoisseured these past three weeks
TUTORIAL SECTIONS 1. Find a quote 2. Customize your AI voice (one time) 3. Setup video template (one time) 4. Produce video