Last year, I told my husband that I wanted to expand my dream of inspiring and educating others about genealogy and family history by creating a YouTube channel. My darling husband helped me come up with a name that would allow for expansion (from myself to him, to our son, and someday to others). That’s how I transitioned from A Patient Genealogist to being a part of Family History Fanatics.
Andy helped me film my first video, correcting me when I said something wrong and frustrating me to no end. Once the video was editing and uploaded to YouTube, I shared the video with friends and family. As with the launch of my first book Power Scrapbooking in 2009, I hoped the right people would stumble upon this crazy idea of mine.
When starting a genealogy channel on YouTube, what should the inaugural video discuss? I chose to explain “What Is Family History?” as my starting point.
In October, my oldest son Caleb expressed an interest in making videos. I figured, why not? This is a family channel and I’d love to have a youth perspective. So, Caleb joined the on-screen team with this first video:
At the end of the month, I began to think beyond broadening my vision. What if I also promoted conferences and genealogy vendors? That would benefit the goal of educating others on genealogy. While at the 2017 Texas State Genealogy Conference, I put the plan into action. Mind you, I didn’t prepare in advance so I’m super thankful that Randy Whited, the TxSGS President said, have at it! MyHeritage representatives were the first to agree to be interviewed for my channel. Andy and I conducted several interviews with the vendors at the TxSGS Conference.
Tragedy struck during the conference and I lost numerous interviews before I could share them online. Now I know the importance of keeping an eye on your gear and saving videos remotely when at a live event.
With Andy an onscreen part of Family History Fanatics, we really are Family History Fanatics, proving that family history is a team sport!
In February, Andy and I were presenters for RootsTech 2017. Since feedback was so positive from the TxSGS Conference for our interviews, we decided to go crazy capturing interviews. We captured and created 13 videos for RootsTech (you can binge watch by clicking this playlist link). The most popular video was my interview with Crista Cowan of Ancestry.com. She’s such a gem, so that’s no surprise.
A close second was my pre-RootsTech video, which will certainly come in handy as you prepare for RootsTech 2018
(BTW, when you click on the RootsTech links in this post, you let them know I’m doing a great job promoting the conference as an Ambassador. So, click the link.)
After RootsTech, we were approaching 100 subscribers. To anyone who was an early subscriber to my channel. THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU. Thanks for taking a chance on my dream and helping us grow as a team.
In the middle of posting RootsTech videos, Andy posted his first video about DNA. This video has gone ‘viral’ of sorts. It’s our most popular video by a factor of 10.
In May, our YouTube channel started to grow rapidly and it has yet to stop. At our one-year anniversary mark, we had 700 subscribers, 74,000+ views, and an active community in the comments section (well, at least on the DNA videos).
We’re super excited about how my crazy idea last year has turned into reality. In the next year, we’re going to post DNA related videos every Tuesday and genealogy/scrapbooking videos every Thursday.
We’re also looking to partner with other genealogists around the world to create a third video a week offering from Extended Fanatics. If you’re interested in teaching a genealogy principle while promoting yourself, use the contact form on our website.
In 2018, Andy and I will once again attend RootsTech. We’re going to start scheduling interviews while we’re in Salt Lake City. If you’d like to make the list, let me know. (Use that contact form.)
We’d like to attend additional conferences but unless we can also teach at those, the economics doesn’t quite work out. So, if you’d like to see us at a location near you, check out our speaking schedule or submit a request for us to present.
We’re also venturing into managing eConferences for local and state genealogical societies. We take the hassle out of fundraising for society board members. If your society is interested in having us produce an eConference, follow this link to our contact page.
Enough about us! What about you? Anniversaries are about gift giving and we have one for you.
To celebrate our anniversary, we are giving away one 4-Day Pass to RootsTech 2018 held February 28–March 3, 2018, in Salt Lake City. As an ambassador for RootsTech, I receive a complimentary pass to give to one of my readers/viewers. This includes:
- Entrance for to the RootsTech track classes from Wednesday – Saturday
- Access to more than 300 classes, keynotes, and general sessions
- Admission to the Expo Hall (starting Wednesday evening and running through Saturday)
- Evening events on Thursday and Saturday.
- (This giveaway does not include luncheon events, paid workshops, printed syllabus, travel, or hotel.)
RootsTech is genealogy conference on steroids. My daughter, our behind the scenes queen, says it’s like a Comic Con. I have to agree. You’ll learn so much and feel the intense energy! As a thank you for reading, watching, and supporting the Family History Fanatics, we want you to attend the craziness as our guest.
|RootsTech 2018 Awaits You!|
HOW TO ENTER
To be eligible for our giveaway, do each of the following things to be entered into the drawing.
- Subscribe to the Family History Fanatics YouTube Channel (Click here and press the red subscribe button)
- Leave a comment on any video on the Family History Fanatics YouTube Channel
- Subscribe to our newsletter. (Click here)
- Send us a “RootsTech Contest Entry Complete” message using our the contact form on our website.
The contest runs from October 2nd to October 31st. Don’t procrastinate!
We’ll draw one winner on November 1st and announce their name in a future post.
No purchase necessary to enter. Void where prohibited by law.