Way back in 2007 I started my first YouTube channel, solely as an easy way to be able to share our fun boating times on our local boating web site. That worked great, as it was so much easier than embedding Quicktime Movie files or learning Flash programming and the quirks of getting that to work smoothly. After all, I was only doing this to share some laughs with the boaters in our local marina and didn't want to spend even more of my free time on this little hobby than needed.
Some early YouTube material (even before the days of HD)
So it was a good, convenient fit for my purposes. But after awhile I started to get comments on some of the videos from 'outsiders' - people I had never met before - and they were telling me how much they enjoyed watching our boating adventures. Cool, I thought, especially since I had never considered my YouTube videos in that way. Suddenly I had a burgeoning audience. Go figure.
When I started my little boating web site back in 2001, it was meant simply as a way to keep in touch with our boating buddies, as many of us lived far apart from each other and this seemed like a way to extend the fun through the cold, dark winter. But, as with embedding videos and all the background work that goes into building and maintaining a web site, I wanted a quicker, easier way of sharing the fun. In came Blogger and this very Blog. Again, as with YouTube, before I knew it, 'new' people were visiting and leaving messages letting me know how much they enjoy reading about our travels and the fun. Go figure.
|In the Hot Tub with our boating friends, back in 2002.|
Fast forward to 2013 and I have seen the huge potential of not only sharing our fun online, but actually making some money from it. Perhaps a full time gig just doing this, I mused? Why not. But it was going to take more than merely posting videos and stories - I would have to get even more people enthused! That's where the dreaded and heretofore loathed Facebook came in.
Sure, I had a Facebook account going way back, but stopped using it not long after initially setting it up, as I found that the only thing I was getting from it was 'friends' posting the same jokes and waste of time snippets that I was getting in my email every day. Why did I need to log into a separate account to see the same thing? I didn't, so I stopped using it (one can't actually delete their account, it only goes dormant).
|Waiting for the lock on Boogaboo III at Fenelon Falls, summer 2006.|
Grudgingly, I decided to set up a new 'Page' in early 2013 so that I might be able to connect with even more like minded folks who could join in with the adventure and hopefully broaden my followers. OK, before I go any further and hear 'I told you so' from my wife, I'll be the first to admit that Facebook has not only a great marketing tool, but a fun way to connect with others who also enjoy the boating lifestyle. Beyond that, it continues to be a great joy for me to open the eyes, so to speak, of those followers who have never even been on a boat! Now that is cool :-) Go figure.
A pretty shot of 'Boogaboo IV', 2013;
|Boogaboo IV at Lock #42 of the Trent Severn Waterway|
So, now I got my groove going on YouTube, Blogger and Facebook. All set, right? Nope. Seems there is this social sharing network called Pinterest. OK, you've probably already seen it, or at least heard of it, but our immersion in it is only recent for us, so I tend to speak of it like it's brand new to everyone :-/ You might have also noticed that for the first time in this little timeline I'm referring to the involvement in Pinterest as 'ours'. That's because my lovely Anchor Girl is in charge of the selections for our boards and pinning from other member's shares. It took a bit to get the hang of the site, but now we are getting it and seeing why it is so popular with it's approximately 70 million users. So, we are now full time Pinners, and I'm OK with that ;-) Go figure.
Now, here we are with four major social networking portals to work on, and that's something we do daily. I've made it my mission to see this new lifestyle of living on our boat all summer and traveling south in the winters come together and make it all come together, and to achieve that I work, I mean REALLY WORK all my sites, many hours every day.
And I do LOVE it! Go figure ;-)