The SNAP-Ed Toolkit is moving!

The Toolkit and its resources, including evidence-based interventions and the SNAP-Ed Evaluation Framework, will soon be housed within the SNAP-Ed Connection website. Please look for future communication regarding that transition. Thanks. — The Toolkit Team

The need to be more flexible in the delivery of SNAP-Ed programming is apparent. With the rise in the dispersion of technology like smartphones into communities, we have also seen the increase in the use of social media platforms to distribute information and build community. SNAP-Ed programming can be delivered virtually. We are providing these guides to help SNAP-Ed implementing agencies, sub-contractors and their staff members to become familiar with various platforms develop content and share that content with their audiences.

These guides focus on a few social media platforms (Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube), one video sharing platform (YouTube), and one video conferencing platform (Zoom). These platforms were chosen from all the available options because of their popularity (the number of users already using the platforms and familiar with how they work) and their accessibility features.

Social media platforms and other technologies frequently change. The resources linked to in this guide were current as of the last update in October 2020.

Reminder: Many of these resources are intended for use on social media platforms. Please check with your state agency and/or work with your regional coordinators for any approval needed when sharing information on social media platforms.

The SNAP-Ed Toolkit Team hosted a webinar providing a tour of this resource, which can be found on the Webinars page of the Toolkit. 

Accessibility

Throughout these guides, there is information about how to make digital content more accessible. Creating content that is accessible to everyone is important, and it can have wide-ranging benefits. For example, adding captions to videos makes them accessible to people who are deaf or hard of hearing. And captions also make videos accessible in other ways:

  • A hearing person in a loud environment or who prefers to watch with the volume off can still access the video content.
  • People with cognitive or learning disabilities may absorb information better by reading it.
  • People whose first language is a language other than English may be better able to understand the content with captions available.
  • Anyone who prefers to read content so to understand it better or to reinforce the content to help them remember it will benefit from captions.

 

Quick-Start Guides

The “quick-start” guides provide simple, straightforward tutorials on how to create educational videos. Educators who have an in-person class that they would like to transition to an online class can use one of these guides to record a video that participants can watch.

 

How to Pre-Record and Share a Video

Pre-recording a video may be the best choice if you want to be able to edit the video before sharing it and you don’t want to risk running into technical difficulties during a live video broadcast. A pre-recorded video is also usually the best choice for accessibility for hard of hearing or deaf participants since you can add accurate captions to the video before sharing it.

You can use a computer or a phone to record a video of yourself explaining something or demonstrating a skill. These tutorials cover the basics of how to record a video if you aren’t familiar with that capability on your phone or computer.

Accessibility tips:

  • You may want to consider creating a script for your video before you record it. Having a script can help later with creating captions. Keep in mind that adding captions after recording your video can take time, and plan ahead.
  • To accommodate people who are blind or who have low vision, you will want to describe any on-screen images or graphics that provide information that wouldn’t otherwise be accessible. It may be helpful to plan ahead what you want to say.

 

On a computer:

RESOURCE TOOLS OR TECHNOLOGY NEEDED DESCRIPTION
Video Tutorial: How to Use Your Webcam with Windows 10 Camera App Windows 10, camera (built-in laptop camera or external webcam) This one-minute tutorial shows you how to open the Camera app on Windows 10 and use it to record a video. Windows computers come with the Camera app already installed. Older versions of Windows also include the Camera app.

Photo and video files created with the Camera app are saved in your computer’s “Camera Roll” folder, found inside the “Pictures” folder.

Article Tutorial: Take a Photo or Record a Video in Photo Booth on Mac Apple (Mac) computer, camera (built-in laptop camera or external webcam) This simple tutorial shows you how to record a video in Photo Booth, an app that is already installed on Mac operating systems.

Photo and video files created with Photo Booth are saved in your computer’s “Pictures” folder.

 

On a phone:

RESOURCE TOOLS OR TECHNOLOGY NEEDED DESCRIPTION
Article Tutorial: Take Videos With Your iPhone Camera iPhone If you haven’t used your iPhone’s camera before to film video, this tutorial covers the basics.
Article Tutorial: Take Videos with Your iPad Camera iPad This basic tutorial covers how to film videos with an iPad.

Android phones with cameras all have a built-in camera app. How to open the app and its appearance might vary slightly depending on the phone. If you haven’t used your phone’s video camera before, you can check your user manual or look for a specific tutorial or set of instructions online.

If you need to edit your video, you can find video editing tutorials in Step 3 of the step-by-step information below.

RESOURCE DESCRIPTION
Video and Article Tutorial: Create an Account on YouTube How to create a Google account from YouTube. A Google account is necessary for creating a YouTube channel.

If you already have a Google account, log into it and skip this step. (However, if your existing Google account is a personal account, consider whether to create a new, separate work account.)

Video and Article Tutorial: Create a New Channel How to create a YouTube channel from a Google account.

If your agency already have a YouTube channel, skip this step.

Video and Article Tutorial: How to Upload Videos With YouTube Studio How to upload to YouTube.
Video Tutorial: How to Add Subtitles on YouTube YouTube will automatically generate captions for any video you upload. This tutorial shows you how to edit those captions to ensure they are accurate.

RESOURCE DESCRIPTION
Instructions: How Do I Create a Facebook Account? If you don’t already have a Facebook account, you’ll need one to create a page.
Tutorial: Create a Facebook Page This tutorial walks you through the basic steps of creating a Facebook Business page. While the language of the tutorial is for “business” pages, educational and nonprofit organizations should create the same type of page.

The tutorial includes instructions for how to create a custom profile photo and cover photo in a program called Canva, an online program with a free version available.

Video Tutorial: Editing Your Facebook Video Thumbnail and Adding Captions This tutorial covers how to upload a video to a Facebook page and how to add auto-generated captions and then edit them.

 

How to Host a Live Video Broadcast

Hosting a live broadcast may be the best choice for engagement since you can interact with participants during the broadcast. There are options for how to add live captions to a broadcast, including automatic captioning features or working with a live human captioner. Plan ahead to test out the technology before going live, ensure your captioning choice is working and schedule captioning services if needed. 

Below is a chart comparing some of the live broadcast features on these two platforms.

Note: It is possible to use both these platforms simultaneously if you have a paid Zoom subscription. See “Stream a Zoom Meeting to Facebook Live or YouTube Live” below for details.

FACEBOOK ZOOM
Description Host a live video from a Facebook Business page. Host a live meeting through Zoom.
Participant Interaction Features Participants can leave public comments while the livestream is happening. Participants can speak and/or be seen on video if desired. They can also type questions or comments into the chat, either publicly or privately (just to the hosts).*
Time Limit on Broadcast Computer: 8 hours

Mobile device: 4 hours

Free plan: 40 minutes

Paid subscription: 24 hours

Limit on Number of Participants None 100*
Number of Speakers/Presenters 1-2 Unlimited (But speakers/presenters are included in the participant number, which is limited to 100)
Accessibility for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Participants Facebook has an automatic captioning feature that can be turned on during a Facebook Live event.

A live human captioner (also known as Communication Access Realtime Translation, or CART) is an option if a service can be hired.

Some Zoom accounts may have live automatic captioning available.

You can also assign a participant (either a colleague or a captioning service) to type closed captions during the meeting.

Ease of Use for Participants If participants are familiar with Facebook, it is fairly easy to access a live video. Facebook may have an advantage because many participants may already have accounts and spend time on the site. Zoom is not difficult to use, and participants can join without downloading software (if the meeting settings allow “join from browser,” but Facebook may still have an advantage since participants may already be familiar with Facebook and spending time on the site.
Gathering Participant Information Facebook provides general analytics about participation but doesn’t capture specific information about participants (i.e. contact information). If you require that participants register ahead of the meeting, you can collect contact information like name and/or email address.

*These features are available in Zoom meetings. Some paid accounts also have access to Zoom webinars. In webinars, participants can chat and submit written questions to a Q&A feature, but they cannot join via audio or video (i.e. the hosts can’t see or hear the participants). Webinars are open to a larger number of participants.

RESOURCE DESCRIPTION
Instructions: How Do I Create a Facebook Account? If you don’t already have a Facebook account, you’ll need one to create a page.
Tutorial: Create a Facebook Page This tutorial walks you through the basic steps of creating a Facebook Business page. While the language of the tutorial is for “business” pages, educational and nonprofit organizations should create the same type of page.

The tutorial includes instructions for how to create a custom profile photo and cover photo in a program called Canva, an online program with a free version available.

Video Tutorial: How to Go Live on Facebook From Your Desktop or Laptop If you want to host a Facebook Live video on your Facebook page using a computer, this tutorial covers how to do it.

You will need a camera connected to your computer, either a built-in laptop camera or a webcam that plugs into your computer.

Facebook automatically records your live video as it is happening, and this tutorial ends with instructions about how to save the video to your Facebook page if you want to. If you don’t save it, the video is deleted.

Video Tutorial: How to Go Live on Facebook (Mobile) This tutorial covers how to host a Facebook Live video from a mobile device instead of a computer. Facebook automatically records your live video as it is happening, and this tutorial ends with instructions about how to save the video to your Facebook page if you want to. If you don’t save it, the video is deleted.

Facebook automatically records your live video as it is happening, and this tutorial ends with instructions about how to save the video to your Facebook page if you want to. If you don’t save it, the video is deleted.

Video Tutorial: Facebook Live With Multiple Presenters If you want to do a Facebook Live with two or more people in the conversation, you can follow this tutorial, which shows how to go live with two presenters using a third party app. (There are instructions in the video for how to do this from the Facebook app without third party software, but they are designed for going live from a profile, not a page.) One app option mentioned, StreamYard, has a free version, which allows up to 20 hours of streaming per month.
Video Tutorial: How to Add Live Captions to Facebook Live Streams (via Computer) This 30-second video shows how to turn on live, automatically generated captions while hosting a Facebook Live broadcast.
Video Tutorial: How to Use Facebook Live Screen Share for Webinars If you need to share your screen during the live broadcast in order to display a slides or anything else relevant to your presentation, Facebook has a screensharing feature.
Video tutorial: Using ‘Window Mode’ in PowerPoint for Effective Teams Presentation In the tutorial above, the presenter turns her presentation into a PDF to share it. If you are working in PowerPoint and wish to keep your presentation in a PowerPoint format, you can use the tip explained in this video where you start your slideshow in a window and simply share that window (rather than a full-screen slideshow). This will allow you to keep the Facebook window open at the same time.

RESOURCE DESCRIPTION
Instructions: Quick Start Guide for New Users This overview provides instructions for how to create a Zoom account as well as quick tips for how to get started. The tutorials below provide more details.
Instructions: Scheduling Meetings Offers instructions for multiple ways to schedule a Zoom meeting.
Instructions:  Setting Up Registration for a Meeting If you want to collect participant information like name and email address, you can set up a meeting where participants are required to register ahead of time.

Accessibility note: If you ask for registration, one way to make your best effort to accommodate participants with disabilities would be to include a statement such as “Please let us know as soon as possible if you need any accommodations or services to take part in this event” along with a question about accommodation needs that they can answer in the registration form.

Article Tutorial: Manage Automatic Live Transcription Some Zoom accounts have automatic live captioning available. This tutorial explains how to enable that feature if it is available on your account.
Instructions and Video Tutorial: Screen Sharing During a meeting, a host or co-host can share their screen in order to display a presentation or other content. These instructions explain how screen sharing works.
Video tutorial: Using ‘Window Mode’ in PowerPoint for Effective Teams Presentation If you are sharing a presentation from PowerPoint, you may find the tip explained in this video useful. It shows you how to start your slideshow in a window and simply share that window (rather than a full-screen slideshow). This will allow you to keep the Zoom window open at the same time.
Instructions and Video Tutorial: Host and Co-Host Controls in a Meeting Meeting hosts and co-hosts can control aspects of a meeting, including muting or unmuting participants and recording the meeting. This article covers the various controls that hosts have available.

*Note: These options are only available with a paid Zoom subscription.

If you have a paid Zoom subscription, while you are hosting a Zoom meeting, you can stream it to Facebook Live or YouTube Live. Streaming can provide an additional option for people to join, or it can be the only option and you can simply use the tools within Zoom to facilitate your live event.

Streaming can generate interest among participants who follow your Facebook page or your YouTube channel. It may also be a more appealing option to participants who are used to viewing content on Facebook or YouTube and less likely to download or use an additional app, like Zoom.

RESOURCE DESCRIPTION
Instructions: Streaming a Meeting or Webinar on Facebook Live Instructions for how to stream a Zoom meeting to a Facebook page.
Instructions: Streaming a Meeting or Webinar on YouTube Live Instructions for how to stream a Zoom meeting to a YouTube channel.

 

Step-by-Step Guides for Transitioning to Online Education

The step-by-step guides are a more comprehensive approach. They guide educators through making a plan for online education delivery, choosing a delivery platform, and then learning the nuts and bolts of how to use that platform to engage with SNAP-Ed participants.

 

Step 1: Plan an Online Education Strategy

Whether you’re just starting to think about creating online education materials or you’ve already created many online materials, it can be useful to think big picture about what your goals are and what strategies would best help you meet those goals.

If you want to plan a strategy for engaging people online, one way to do that is the POST method. The POST method was developed by Josh Bernoff and Charlene Li in their book Groundswell: Winning in a World Transformed by Social Technologies. POST stands for People (understanding your audience), Objectives (understanding what you want to accomplish), Strategy (coming up with a plan to accomplish your objectives), and Technology (using the right tools to accomplish your goals).

When we’re thinking about developing an online presence, many of us think about the tools first. We want to know how to upload a video to YouTube, for example, or how to create an Instagram post. There’s a lot to learn and to know about the tools that are available to us. But if we think first about who we’re trying to engage and why, that can help us choose the best tools.

This worksheet from HIV.gov uses the POST method to develop strategies for using “new media” to promote health. The same questions may apply to SNAP-Ed implementing agencies if you replace the term “new media” with “online education.”

Here are some additional questions that may help:

People

  • What age is your audience?
  • What languages do they speak?
  • What is important to them?
  • How do they access information?
  • What value do your educational resources provide for them? What can they get out of it?

Objectives

  • What do you want your audience to learn or accomplish?
  • Are you goals any different with online delivery than they are with in-person interventions?

Strategies

  • What resources do you have that can support online education?
  • What skills does your team have? What skills can you learn? What role will each of you play?
  • What type of online presence will best help you meet your goals? Educational content? Interactions with participants?
  • How can you plan to re-evaluate and change your strategy if needed?

Technology

  • What kinds of technology do you need? Do you need a way to develop materials you can put online (like videos)? Do you need a way to reach people (social media, a website or Zoom)?

 

Step 2: Choose a Platform

Your audience and your goals can help you identify which platform would be best for your agency. Your agency can be on more than one platform. In fact, platforms can sometimes work together. But if you’re just beginning, it may make sense to identify one main platform where you plan to engage with your audience.

Your SNAP-Ed agency may already have either a website or a social media presence, or both. If your agency wants to create either a new website or a new social media presence, you may want to think about the resources and skills your team has available and which technology, or combination of technologies, will best help you accomplish your goals.

This table compares some of the features of websites and social media.

WEBSITE SOCIAL MEDIA
Organization of Content Usually flexible. Creator can decide how to organize content. There may be some options for organizing content. In some cases content will be organized by the site, usually chronologically.
Ease of Use It depends on how the website is created, but will probably involve some learning curve. Designed to be relatively easy to use but will probably still involve a learning curve.
Audience Engagement Participants will only access your content on a website if they go directly to the website. It’s possible to reach social media users even if they aren’t looking for your page or your content.
Mobile Users Many website creation tools make sure that sites are optimized for mobile phones, but it is not a given. Social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter are all optimized for mobile phone users.

 

The resources and tutorials on these pages mostly focus on social media. But websites are another option for sharing videos and other content. Consider whether one or both can help you reach your goals. If you use both, consider how they may work together.

One of the benefits of using social media to reach an audience is that at least some of your audience is probably already there.

The Pew Research Center tracks social media use, and their Social Media Fact Sheet includes data on who is using each of the major social media platforms.

Some highlights:

  • As of 2019, 72% of U.S. adults used at least one social media site.
  • Facebook and YouTube are the most popular social media platforms, followed by Instagram.
  • Social media site usage varies by age. In 2019, 67% of 18-29 year-olds used Instagram, compared to 47% of 30-49 year-olds, 23% of 50-64 year-olds, and 8% of those 65 and older. Facebook was used by 79% of those ages 18-49, 68% of those ages 50-64, and 46% of those 65 and older.
  • There is some variation in social media site usage by race/ethnicity. In 2019, Instagram was used by 51% of Latinx adults, 40% of Black adults, and 33% of white adults. Facebook was used by 69% of Latinx adults, 70% of Black adults, and 70% of white adults.
FACEBOOK INSTAGRAM YOUTUBE
Demographics of users Most users of any traditional social media (67% of adults).

All ages. 79% of young people (18-29) and 46% of seniors use Facebook.

No differences across race/ethnicity. 69-70% of white, Black and Latinx adults.

More than a third (37%) of adults.

Skews young. 67% of young people (18-29) are users but only 8% of seniors.

Differences across race/ethnicity. 51% of Latinx adults, 40% of Black and 33% of white adults.

73% of all adults are users.

All ages. 91% of young people (18-29) and 38% of seniors use YouTube.

Only slight differences across race/ethnicity. 71% of white, 77% of Black and 78% of Latinx adults are users.

Description Social networking site/app where users can interact with each other as well as follow pages (created by businesses, nonprofits, public figures, etc.) A social sharing app where the main content is visual (photos and videos). A video sharing site/app.
Main types of posts/content Posts usually feature a combination of text with visual content (photos, videos). Photos/videos are the main content, accompanied by text. Videos
Character limit on posts? 63,206 characters 2,200 characters 100 characters (titles)

5,000 characters

(descriptions)

Limit to video length? 240 minutes 60 seconds (posts)

15 seconds (stories)

10 minutes (IGTV)

60 minutes (IGTV video from verified account)

60 minutes (live videos)

15 minutes (new account)

12 hours or 128GB file size (account verified with phone)

Video conferencing platforms allow presenters and participants to see each other and speak with each other. They usually also allow presenters to share their screens and allow presenters and participants to use chat features.

There are multiple video conferencing platforms available. The only one covered in these guides is Zoom. Zoom was chosen both for its popularity (some participants may be familiar with it) and its features (free accounts available, a way to require participants to register, and captioning options). However, it may be worth considering other tools if a different tool will meet particular needs that you have or if your agency already has access to a different video conferencing platform.

Participants can join a Zoom meeting by phone or by computer. Within a meeting, the participants and the host can see each other and talk to each other (if both the host and participants have a camera and microphone on their device).

Overview of Zoom’s features (free plan):

  • Meetings with up to 100 participants
  • Meetings with a free account are limited to 40 minutes
  • Participants can connect their device’s camera and/or microphone to participate, or they can simply view the meeting
  • Screen sharing feature that enables host or participants to display what’s on their screen in the meeting

 

Step 3: Create Pre-Recorded Educational Videos

These guides can help you create educational videos to share with participants.

Reminders:

  • Note: When editing, remember that according to the SNAP-Ed Guidance, all forms of communication, including videos, should include the Nondiscrimination Statement. As a reminder, you may want to check with your state agency about inclusion of the non-discrimination statement and whether approval is needed.
  • SNAP-Ed has a library of materials, which includes educational videos. Consider reviewing the content in the library and submitting new materials after they are developed.

Note: Plan ahead for accessibility.

  • Adding captions to a video with a speaker or narration will help make your it accessible to people who are deaf or hard of hearing. Captions can also make your video more engaging to all users.
  • When videos contain visual elements that provide information, describing these visuals can help make them accessible to people who are blind or vision impaired. Describing visuals can also help keep all participants engaged and reinforce information.
  • Consider planning a script ahead of time, which may help with captions later and can remind the speaker to describe visual elements.

If you are using a computer and your project involves recording audio, you will need a microphone connected to your computer. Your computer may have a built-in microphone. You can also use a headset or a plug-in USB microphone.

If you are using a computer and your project involves recording video of yourself and/or something in your environment, you will need access to a camera, either the built-in camera that most laptops have or a webcam that attaches to your computer.

Another option for recording video is a phone or tablet with built-in camera and microphone.

Additional tools, like lights, can be helpful but are not necessary and are not covered in these guides.

You can use a computer or a phone to record a video of yourself explaining something or demonstrating a skill. These tutorials cover the basics of how to record a video if you aren’t familiar with that capability on your phone or computer.

On a computer:

RESOURCE TOOLS OR TECHNOLOGY NEEDED DESCRIPTION
Video Tutorial: How to Use Your Webcam with Windows 10 Camera App Windows 10, camera (built-in laptop camera or external webcam) This one-minute tutorial shows you how to open the Camera app on Windows 10 and use it to record a video. Windows computers come with the Camera app already installed. Older versions of Windows also include the Camera app.

Photo and video files created with the Camera app are saved in your computer’s “Camera Roll” folder, found inside the “Pictures” folder.

Article Tutorial: Take a Photo or Record a Video in Photo Booth on Mac Apple (Mac) computer, camera (built-in laptop camera or external webcam) This simple tutorial shows you how to record a video in Photo Booth, an app that is already installed on Mac operating systems.

Photo and video files created with Photo Booth are saved in your computer’s “Pictures” folder.

On a phone:

Article Tutorial: Take Videos With Your iPhone Camera iPhone If you haven’t used your iPhone’s camera before to film video, this tutorial covers the basics.
Article Tutorial: Take Videos with Your iPad Camera iPad This basic tutorial covers how to film videos with an iPad.

Android phones with cameras all have a built-in camera app. How to open the app and its appearance might vary slightly depending on the phone. If you haven’t used your phone’s video camera before, you can check your user manual or look for a specific tutorial or set of instructions online.

Another option for video creation is turning a PowerPoint presentation into a video. The end result will look like a slideshow of your presentation, accompanied by audio narration that you record.

RESOURCE TOOLS OR TECHNOLOGY NEEDED DESCRIPTION
Video and Article Tutorial: Record a PowerPoint Slide Show With Narration and Timings PowerPoint software, microphone, camera (optional) PowerPoint has built-in capability for recording narration and add it to slides. You have the option to record only audio narration, or you can use a built-in camera or webcam to record video of you speaking. The video is added in a small box in the bottom right corner of each slide.
Video and Article Tutorial: Turn Your PowerPoint Presentation Into a Video PowerPoint software This tutorial explains how to convert a PowerPoint presentation to a video. First, add narration to the slides (if desired) using the tutorial above. When you convert the presentation to a video, the narration will be included.

Accessibility Note: Be sure to add captions to your video before sharing it. (See the Accessibility section on this page for details.) PowerPoint has built-in captioning capability, but YouTube’s captioning features are easier to use. See the accessibility section on this page for more details.

The tutorials above cover how to create a video within PowerPoint. PowerPoint alternatives, like Google Slides, may not have built-in features for converting to video. But screencasting or screen recording can be used to create a video from any on-screen content. See the Screencasting section below for details.

Screencasting refers to recording your screen. You could be giving a presentation, showing people how to do something on the internet, or doing anything else that displays on a computer screen. A screencast can include narration. It can also optionally include video of the narrator or instructor, which usually appears as a small thumbnail in one corner of the screencast video. Below are four different screencasting options. Choose the one that would best suit your needs.

RESOURCE TOOLS OR TECHNOLOGY NEEDED DESCRIPTION
Video Tutorial: Zoom for Lecture/Sceen Capture Zoom account, microphone, camera (optional) How to use Zoom as a screencasting tool by hosting a meeting and not inviting any participants.
Video Tutorial: Loom Screen Recording Tool for Teachers Loom software, microphone, camera (optional) Loom is screencasting software that offers a free version. The free version has the limitation of 25 videos. Once you record 25, you can no longer use Loom without paying for an upgraded version.

Accessibility Note: Be sure to add captions to your video before sharing it. (See the Accessibility section on this page for details.) Loom does not have built-in captioning capabilities.

Video and Article Tutorial: Beginner’s Guide to Screencast-O-Matic’s Free Screen Recorder Screencast-O-Matic software, microphone, camera (optional) Screencast-O-Matic is another screencasting software option with a free version. Videos made using the free version are limited to 15 minutes and include a watermark.

Accessibility Note: Be sure to add captions to your video before sharing it. (See the Accessibility section on this page for details.) Screencast-O-Matic does allow you to add captions directly to your video.

Article Tutorial: Screen Recording with QuickTime QuickTime software (only available on Mac OS), microphone If your computer is a Mac, it includes a video player called QuickTime, which can also act as a screen recorder.

Accessibility Note: Be sure to add captions to your video before sharing it. (See the Accessibility section on this page for details.)

These tools are mostly designed to create short videos (only a few minutes). And they may take a little more time to put together than simply recording yourself or your screen. So, these tools may not be appropriate for creating an instructional video or another in-depth video. But they could be used to create short, visually interesting videos that share tips or ideas.

RESOURCE TOOLS OR TECHNOLOGY NEEDED DESCRIPTION
Video Tutorial: How to Use Adobe Spark Adobe Spark account (free account available), microphone (optional) Adobe Spark is a tool for creating graphics, websites, and videos. There is a free version of Adobe Spark. Any videos made with the free version include an Adobe Spark watermark.

The video tool in Adobe Spark allows you add photos, video clips, graphics and/or text in a dynamic way. Adobe Spark combines in a dynamic way to make a video. You can add voiceover narration and/or music to the video.

Accessibility Note: If your video includes voiceover, be sure to add captions to your video before sharing it. Spark does have a design feature that lets you add a caption to each “slide,” but if you use a caption, you can’t use any other type of text, limiting your design options. See the Accessibility section for more captioning options.

Video Tutorial: How to Create a Video With Animoto Animoto account (free account available) Animoto also lets you combine photos, video clips, graphics and/or text to create a video. Videos made with the free version include an Animoto logo.

Animoto does not have built-in voiceover capabilities.

 

Once you’ve filmed a video, there are many tools available for editing. Windows and Mac computers have free apps for basic video editing, which are usually already installed. If you plan to upload your video to YouTube, YouTube also has a built-in video editor.

RESOURCE TOOLS OR TECHNOLOGY NEEDED DESCRIPTION
Video Tutorial: Video Editing Basics: Windows 10 Photos App Computer with Windows 10 installed This tutorial covers how to edit a video in the Photos app on Windows 10. You can trim clips, remove clips, and rearrange them. You can also add text over top of your video or add music.

The Photos app is included in Windows 10. If you are using a previous version of Windows, the Photos app may have a different appearance and different features.

Accessibility note: The Photos app is a simple program with limited features. It is not designed for adding captions. Closed captions can be added to a video using the YouTube editor (see the Accessibliity section below). If you want to add open captions (permanent captions which can’t be turned off), you may want to use a different video editor.

Video Tutorial: OpenShot Video Editor Windows, Mac, or Linux Computer with OpenShot Video Editor (free) installed OpenShot Video Editor is a more advanced video editor with more features. This tutorial covers its basic features.

Accessibility note: OpenShot can add open captions to videos. The titles feature, demonstrated at 8:24 in the video, can be used to add open captions.

Article Tutorial Series: iMovie Support Apple (Mac) computer with iMovie installed These articles from Apple explain the basics of how to create a new project in iMovie, upload a video, use effects, and edit and rearrange clips.

iMovie is free software that may already be installed on your Mac computer.

Accessibility note: iMovie does have subtitling features that will allow you to add open captions (permanent captions which can’t be turned off).

Video and Article Tutorial: How to Upload Videos With YouTube Studio Computer, YouTube account YouTube Studio is another video editing option. This tutorial explains how to upload a video.

Accessibility note: You can also add closed captions (captions which can be turned on and off) in YouTube Studio. (See the accessibility section below for details.)

Video Tutorial: How to Trim Your Videos With the Video Editor in YouTube Studio Computer, YouTube account This tutorial covers the basics of using the YouTube Editor to trim and/or remove clips from your video.

There are two types of captions: open and closed. Open captions always appear on the screen and can’t be turned off. Closed captions can be turned off or on depending on the viewer’s preference. Read more about the difference between open and closed captions.

Any video on any platform can include open captions since the captions are a permanent part of the video itself. But closed captions are a feature that must be supported by the video platform. YouTube and Facebook support closed captioning, but Instagram does not. Open captions are the only option for making Instagram videos accessible.

 

Tools for Adding Closed Captions to a Video

Closed captions can be turned off and on by the viewer. Facebook and YouTube support closed captions.

If you want to add closed captions to your video, one of the simplest ways is to upload your video to YouTube. YouTube automatically generates captions for videos using speech recognition technology. Within YouTube Studio, you can edit these captions to ensure they are accurate. If you plan to upload your video somewhere else, you can still create captions in YouTube and then download them as an SRT file which can be uploaded with your video to a different platform (like Facebook).

RESOURCE TOOLS OR TECHNOLOGY NEEDED DESCRIPTION
Video Tutorial: How to Add Subtitles on YouTube Computer, YouTube account YouTube will automatically generate captions for any video you upload. This tutorial shows you how to edit those captions to ensure they are accurate.
Video Tutorial: Editing Your Facebook Video Thumbnail and Adding Captions Computer, Facebook page This tutorial covers how to upload a video to a Facebook page and how to add auto-generated captions and then edit them.
How to Download YouTube Subtitles From the YouTube Studio Computer, YouTube account If you upload your video to YouTube and edit the captions, you may want to download the captions file so that you can upload it with your video on another platform.

 

Tools for Adding Open Captions to a Video

Open captions are permanent captions or subtitles that cannot be turned off and on by the viewer. Instagram does not support closed captioning, but videos uploaded to Instagram can include open captions.

If you want to add open captions to your video, some video editing software will allow you to add text on the screen in each scene. iMovie, which is included with Mac computers, includes this feature.

The Photos app on Windows 10 does not have the ability to add subtitles or open captions. Users on Windows computers have two options:

  • Download other video editing software. There are many choices for free editing software. The tutorial below is for OpenShot Video Editor, which is free, includes features for adding titles, and is relatively easy to use.
  • Create closed captions and then use software like HandBrake to “burn” the closed captions to the video, making them open captions.
RESOURCE TOOLS OR TECHNOLOGY NEEDED DESCRIPTION
Video Tutorial: How to Create Subtitles in iMovie Apple (Mac) computer with iMovie installed This tutorial shows you how to add subtitles (or open captions) to your video. This method will create subtitles that are always present on the screen (can’t be turned off) and can only be edited by going back into the original iMovie file where you created them.
Video Tutorial: OpenShot Video Editor Windows, Mac, or Linux Computer with OpenShot Video Editor (free) installed OpenShot Video Editor is a more advanced video editor with more features. Unlike the Windows 10 Photo App, it can add open captions to videos.

This tutorial covers the basic features of OpenShot. The titles feature, demonstrated at 8:24 in the video, can be used to add open captions.

Article and Video Tutorial: How Do I Create Captions for my Course Videos? Windows or Mac Computer, HandBrake Software (free) installed If you have created closed captions using a tool like YouTube Studio, you can download the captions as an SRT file. Using Handbrake, you can combine the captions file with the video file, “burning” the captions onto the video so that they are a permanent part of the video.

This tutorial on how to use HandBrake is at the bottom of the page.

 

Step 4: How to Use Each Platform (Includes Live Broadcasting)

Facebook is the most popular social networking site. According to 2019 data from the Pew Research Center, 69% of adults in the United States were Facebook users.

This table reviews some of the characteristics of Facebook. (Full table comparing social media sites in Step 2: Choose a Platform).

Description Social networking site/app where users can interact with each other as well as follow pages (created by businesses, nonprofits, public figures, etc.)
Main types of posts/content Posts usually feature a combination of text with visual content (photos, videos).
Character limit on posts? 63,206 characters
Limit to video length? 240 minutes

 

Facebook Pages Versus Groups

Facebook has two main tools that organizations can use to engage with people: pages and groups.

A Facebook page is a public profile for a business, nonprofit, other organization, or a public figure. A page is a place to share updates, news, photos, videos, links, and other content. These posts can be seen by anyone who visits the page.

A Facebook group is a space where people can connect with each other to have discussions or share news and information related to the theme of the group. Most business, nonprofits, etc. choose to create a page on Facebook rather than a group, but if a goal of your agency is to give participants a space to speak to one another, a group may be of interest. Groups can be created with different privacy settings—some are public and some are private. Groups can also require moderation — an administrator who keeps an eye on the group to deal with any issues or problem posts. Keep this in mind when planning to create a group.

It is possible to have both a page and a group. If your agency has a Facebook page, you have the option of creating a group that is linked to the page.

For more information, see this article about the difference between Facebook pages and groups.

 

Tutorials for Facebook Pages

RESOURCE DESCRIPTION
Instructions: How Do I Create a Facebook Account? If you don’t already have a Facebook account, you’ll need one to create a page.
Tutorial: Create a Facebook Page This tutorial walks you through the basic steps of creating a Facebook Business page. While the language of the tutorial is for “business” pages, educational and nonprofit organizations should create the same type of page.

The tutorial includes instructions for how to create a custom profile photo and cover photo in a program called Canva, an online program with a free version available.

Video Tutorial: How to Add Alt Text to Facebook Photos Anytime you upload a photo to Facebook, you should add alt text to each photo to make your post accessible. Alt text describes a photo, and it can be read by screen readers used by people who are blind or visually impaired.
Video Tutorial: Editing Your Facebook Video Thumbnail and Adding Captions This tutorial covers how to upload a video to a Facebook page and how to add auto-generated captions and then edit them.

 

Tutorials for Facebook Groups

RESOURCE DESCRIPTION
Article Tutorial: The Complete Guide to Facebook Groups This tutorial covers how to create a Facebook group, including information about how to create a group that is connected to your Facebook page if that is your goal.
Using Units in Your Facebook Group If you designate the category for your Facebook group as “social learning,” you can use units to organize your educational content. This gives an alternative way for participants to navigate through your content rather than only looking at posts in the group, which will always be organized in chronological order.
Facebook Help Center: Group Management for Admins The Facebook Help Center has listed all of their technical instructions for how to moderate a group on this page.
Video Tutorial: Moderate a Group If you’re looking for more general advice about how to moderate a Facebook group, this video from Facebook may be helpful.

 

Facebook Live

Facebook Live is a feature that allows a user or a page to broadcast real-time video from the camera on their computer, phone, or tablet.

RESOURCE DESCRIPTION
Video Tutorial: How to Go Live on Facebook From Your Desktop or Laptop If you want to host a Facebook Live video on your Facebook page using a computer, this tutorial covers how to do it.

 

You will need a camera connected to your computer, either a built-in laptop camera or a webcam that plugs into your computer.

 

Facebook automatically records your live video as it is happening, and this tutorial ends with instructions about how to save the video to your Facebook page if you want to. If you don’t save it, the video is deleted.

Video Tutorial: How to Go Live on Facebook (Mobile) This tutorial covers how to host a Facebook Live video from a mobile device instead of a computer. Facebook automatically records your live video as it is happening, and this tutorial ends with instructions about how to save the video to your Facebook page if you want to. If you don’t save it, the video is deleted.

Facebook automatically records your live video as it is happening, and this tutorial ends with instructions about how to save the video to your Facebook page if you want to. If you don’t save it, the video is deleted.

Video Tutorial: Facebook Live With Multiple Presenters If you want to do a Facebook Live with two or more people in the conversation, you can follow this tutorial, which shows how to go live with two presenters using a third party app. (There are instructions in the video for how to do this from the Facebook app without third party software, but they are designed for going live from a profile, not a page.) One app option mentioned, StreamYard, has a free version, which allows up to 20 hours of streaming per month.
Video Tutorial: How to Add Live Captions to Facebook Live Streams (via Computer) This 30-second video shows how to turn on live, automatically generated captions while hosting a Facebook Live broadcast.
Video Tutorial: How to Use Facebook Live Screen Share for Webinars If you need to share your screen during the live broadcast in order to display a slides or anything else relevant to your presentation, Facebook has a screensharing feature.
Video tutorial: Using ‘Window Mode’ in PowerPoint for Effective Teams Presentation In the tutorial above, the presenter turns her presentation into a PDF to share it. If you are working in PowerPoint and wish to keep your presentation in a PowerPoint format, you can use the tip explained in this video where you start your slideshow in a window and simply share that window (rather than a full-screen slideshow). This will allow you to keep the Facebook window open at the same time.

Facebook Analytics

RESOURCE DESCRIPTION
Instructions: Page Insights | Meta Business Help Center For Facebook pages, these instructions provide information on where to find and how to interpret analytics, which are called “Insights.”
Instructions: Where Can I See Insights for a Facebook Group I Admin? For Facebook groups, these instructions explain how to access analytics (Insights).
Video Tutorial: How to Use Insights to Improve Your Group For Facebook groups, this video provides more information about how to use analytics to improve engagement within a group.

Instagram is not as popular as Facebook, but 37% of U.S. adults are Instagram users, making it relatively popular. Instagram use varies by age and by race/ethnicity. Instagram is most popular among Latinx users (51% of adults are users) and young people ages 18-29 (67% are users).

Instagram has some limitations compared to other social media sites like Facebook. Live videos do not have any captioning options. Pre-recorded videos can be uploaded after adding open (permanent) captions.

Instagram was also designed primarily for use from mobile devices, so some features are difficult to use from a computer or will only work when using a workaround.

This table reviews some of the characteristics of Instagram. (Full table comparing social media sites in Step 2: Choose a Platform).

Description A social sharing app where the main content is visual (photos and videos).
Main types of posts/content Photos/videos are the main content, accompanied by text.
Character limit on posts? 2,200 characters
Limit to video length? 60 seconds (posts)

15 seconds (stories)

10 minutes (IGTV videos)

60 minutes (live videos or IGTV videos from a verified account)

 

Creating an Account and Posting on Instagram

Instagram is designed so that every post includes either a photo, a video, or multiple photos or videos. Each post can be accompanied by text, but it’s the photos or videos that users see first.

In addition to regular posts, Instagram has a feature called Stories. You can post a story to your Instagram account, and those stories are different from posts. For more information about the difference, see this article comparing stories and posts.

Instagram is mainly designed for use from a mobile device, but there are ways to use Instagram’s features from a computer. However, for some features, only a computer that is updated to the latest operating system (Windows 10 or OSX) will work.

RESOURCE DESCRIPTION
Video Tutorial: How to Create an Instagram Account (from a mobile device) How to create a new Instagram account from an iPhone or Android phone.
Video Tutorial: How to Create an Instagram Account on Computer How to create a new Instagram account from a computer.
Article Tutorial: Why and How to Set Up Your Instagram Business Profile

 

If you want to transition an Instagram account to a business account, you must have a Facebook page that you link to the Instagram account.

Business accounts, as opposed to personal accounts, provide analytics (called Instagram Insights). While the account type is called “Instagram for Business,” it is also applicable to nonprofit and other organizations.

However, there are both pros and cons to switching to a business account. For more information, read the “Pros and Cons of an Instagram Business Profile” section of this article about Instagram for Business.

Article Tutorial: How to Use Instagram, a Beginner’s Guide This tutorial covers the ins and outs of Instagram with a focus on how to post (including how to post photos, use hashtags, and include a location in your post) and how to post a story.
Article Tutorial: This Tricky Workaround Lets You Post to Instagram From a PC or Mac Instagram is primarily designed for use from a mobile device. However, there are workarounds available if you want to post from a computer instead. One method which doesn’t require any additional software or apps is to adjust your internet browser so that Instagram thinks it is a phone. This tutorial covers how to do that.
Article Tutorial: Creating an Accessible Instagram Post This article provides guidelines for how to make Instagram posts and stories accessible.

Posts or stories with video content should be captioned. Instagram does not support closed captioning. Before uploading videos to Instagram, add open captions. See the accessibility resources under Step 3: Create Educational Videos for tutorials on open captions.

Article Tutorial: Everything You Need to Know About IGTV While Instagram limits videos in posts to 60 seconds, a few years ago the app debuted another, connected platform, IGTV, which allows Instagram users to post longer videos (up to 60 minutes).
Article Tutorial: Instagram Releases Auto-Captioning for IGTV in 16 Languages Instagram has recently added auto-generated captions to IGTV videos. Captions must be enabled on an account’s settings and then enabled on the video.

Auto-generated captions may not be accurate. For more accurate captions, create your own captions (or auto-generate them using a tool like YouTube and then edit them), and add them to the video as open captions. See the accessibility resources under Step 3: Create Educational Videos for tutorials on open captions.

Instagram Analytics

In order to access analytics on Instagram, you must have an Instagram for Business account. See the tutorial above about converting to Instagram for Business for more information.

RESOURCE DESCRIPTION
Instagram Insights: What Do They Mean? Explains where to find and how to interpret Instagram’s analytics, called Instagram Insights.

YouTube is the most popular social media platform according to data from the Pew Research Center. In 2019, 73% of U.S. adults used YouTube.

In addition to being a social site where people find content, YouTube also serves as a tool you can use to upload a video and then share it in other places.

This table reviews some of the characteristics of YouTube. (Full table comparing social media sites in Step 2: Choose a Platform).

Description A video sharing site/app.
Main types of posts/content Videos
Character limit on posts? 100 characters (titles)

5,000 characters

(descriptions)

Limit to video length? 15 minutes (new account)

12 hours or 128GB file size (account verified with phone)

 

Create a YouTube Account and Channel

RESOURCE DESCRIPTION
Video and Article Tutorial: Create an Account on YouTube How to create a Google account from YouTube. A Google account is necessary for creating a YouTube channel.If you already have a Google account, log into it and skip this step. (However, if your existing Google account is a personal account, consider whether to create a new, separate work account.)
Video and Article Tutorial: Create a New Channel How to create a YouTube channel from a Google account.If your agency already have a YouTube channel, skip this step.

Working With Videos in YouTube

RESOURCE DESCRIPTION
Video and Article Tutorial: How to Upload Videos With YouTube Studio How to upload to YouTube.
Video Tutorial: How to Trim Your Videos With the Video Editor in YouTube Studio This tutorial covers the basics of using the YouTube Editor to trim and/or remove clips from your video.
Video Tutorial: How to Add Subtitles on YouTube YouTube will automatically generate captions for any video you upload. This tutorial shows you how to edit those captions to ensure they are accurate.
How to Download YouTube Subtitles From the YouTube Studio If you upload your video to YouTube and edit the captions, you may want to download the captions file so that you can upload it with your video on another platform.

YouTube Analytics

RESOURCE DESCRIPTION
Video Tutorial: Analytics in YouTube Studio This tutorial shows you where to find analytics data for your videos.

Zoom is a teleconferencing software with a free version available. It isn’t a social media site, but it is a tool that agencies can use to connect with participants by hosting live “meetings.” Participants can join a Zoom meeting by phone or by computer. Within a meeting, the participants and the host can see each other and talk to each other (if both the host and participants have a camera and microphone on their device).

Overview of Zoom’s features (free plan):

  • Meetings with up to 100 participants
  • Meetings with a free account are limited to 40 minutes
  • Participants can connect their device’s camera and/or microphone to participate, or they can simply view the meeting
  • Screen sharing feature that enables host or participants to display what’s on their screen in the meeting

 

Create a Zoom Account

RESOURCE DESCRIPTION
Instructions: Quick Start Guide for New Users This overview provides instructions for how to create a Zoom account as well as quick tips for how to get started. The tutorials below provide more details.

Scheduling a Meeting

RESOURCE DESCRIPTION
Instructions: Scheduling Meetings Offers instructions for multiple ways to schedule a Zoom meeting.
Instructions:  Setting Up Registration for a Meeting If you want to collect participant information like name and email address, you can set up a meeting where participants are required to register ahead of time.Accessibility note: If you ask for registration, one way to make your best effort to accommodate participants with disabilities would be to include a statement such as “Please let us know as soon as possible if you need any accommodations or services to take part in this event” along with a question about accommodation needs that they can answer in the registration form.

 

Hosting a Meeting

RESOURCE DESCRIPTION
Instructions and Video Tutorial: Host and Co-Host Controls in a Meeting Meeting hosts and co-hosts can control aspects of a meeting, including muting or unmuting participants and recording the meeting. This article covers the various controls that hosts have available.
Article Tutorial: Manage Automatic Live Transcription Some Zoom accounts have automatic live captioning available. This tutorial explains how to enable that feature if it is available on your account.
Instructions and Video Tutorial: Screen Sharing During a meeting, a host or co-host can share their screen in order to display a presentation or other content. These instructions explain how screen sharing works.
Video tutorial: Using ‘Window Mode’ in PowerPoint for Effective Teams Presentation If you are sharing a presentation from PowerPoint, you may find the tip explained in this video useful. It shows you how to start your slideshow in a window and simply share that window (rather than a full-screen slideshow). This will allow you to keep the Zoom window open at the same time.

 

Recording a Meeting

RESOURCE DESCRIPTION
Instructions: Local Recording A free Zoom account gives you the ability to record a Zoom meeting to and save it as a file on your computer.

 

Downloading Registration Reports

RESOURCE DESCRIPTION
Instructions: Generating Meeting Reports for Registration and Polling If you require registration for your meeting, you can ask for information from participants. After the meeting, Zoom allows you to download a report with that information.