Podia is awesome for hosting video courses.
Want to add a video lesson to your course? No problem!
Simply click “Add Lesson”, then “Add files” and upload your video. Easy peasy.
But there’s one limitation that has always bugged me…
Each Podia-hosted video needs to have its own lesson and take the “hero” spot at the top of the page.
And here’s the problem with that…
Sometimes I want to add a video but I don’t want to make it the focus of an entire lesson. (Maybe it’s a supporting video, not a teaching video.)
Here’s an example…
I have a short course called Quick Course Videos that helps people create simple course videos with minimum fuss.
One module teaches you how to present and record your videos:
I’ve also created a bunch of video tutorials showing you how to record your lessons using specific tools like Zoom, Loom and ScreenPal.
But I don’t want each of those tactical videos to be a separate lessons.
It bloats my course curriculum, and if I add new tutorials later on, the course keeps getting bigger and bigger.
What I really want is just one lesson at the end of the module that gathers all of the tutorials together on one page.
Now, the official way to do that is to embed the videos in the Content section of the lesson, but here’s the catch…
You can’t natively embed Podia videos in this way, only videos on external platforms like YouTube and Vimeo.
Call me fussy, but I don’t want to have to upload some of my videos to YouTube just so I can embed them on the page.
Fortunately there’s a solution which just requires learning one simple hack.
First, you create a private video “vault” inside Podia containing all of your supporting videos.
And then you just embed them where you need them in your course. (And that’s where the hack comes in.)
Here’s what it looks like inside my course after I’ve embedded my videos:
Here’s how it works…
Creating Your Reusable Video Vault
Here’s how to create a Podia video vault and embed your first video.
Step 1: Create a new online course product
First, create a new online course in Podia. (You can call it something like “My Video Vault”.)
Note: You won’t give students direct access to this course. In fact, you should keep it in “Draft” mode.
Step 2: Upload your video as a new lesson
Next, upload the video you want to embed as a file-based lesson inside your draft course.
(You can upload it to the root of the course or create a separate section to keep things organised. It’s up to you.)
Then, once the video has uploaded and processed, select “View lesson” and make sure the video appears correctly on the page.
Step 3: Grab the video identifier
Next, we need to grab the unique identifier for the video.
(This is the bit where things get a little technical, but the good news is that you don’t need to understand it to actually do it!)
Here are the steps:
i) View the HTML source code for the lesson page
First you’ll need to view the page source for the lesson containing the video you want to share from your vault.
ii) Find the string “wistia_embed” in the code
Next, use your browser’s search function (Ctrl-f on Chrome) to find the string “wistia_embed” (it should only appear once on the page).
You’ll find a snippet of code that looks something like this:
<div class="wistia_embed wistia_async_35jp9on2xy playerColor=#155e75 controlsVisibleOnLoad=false fullscreenButton=true ...
iii) Grab two important values from the snippet
Once you’ve found the snippet you’ll need to grab two important values.
The first is the video’s unique id, which comes directly after the string “wistia_async_“. (In the above example it’s “35jp9on2xy”.)
Grab it and paste it into a blank text file.
Next, you’ll need to grab the text that comes immediately after the “playerColor=#” parameter. (In the above example it’s “155e75”.)
(In case you’re wondering, this is just the hexadecimal code for the brand colour you’ve chosen for your video player. If you don’t include this you’ll get “Podia blue” by default.)
Paste that into your text file too.
Step 4: Create your unique embeddable URL
Now you need to create the link for embedding your video. It needs to follow a precise format to work correctly, so review this next bit carefully.
Here’s the format:
Just plug in the values you extracted from the page source to create your embeddable link.
For the example above it would look like this:
Note: Podia uses the superfast video host Wistia for its videos, which is why the url contains “wistia” not “podia”.
Step 5: Embed your video!
All that remains now is to embed your video link wherever you want it to appear.
To do this you can just use the regular embed feature within the Content section of any lesson.
In other words, just click ”/” and then select the “Embed” option.
Paste in your link, click “Insert” and you’re done!
More Ways to Explore the Podia Video “Multiverse”
Using this trick you can feature a video in multiple places at the same time.
Here are some example scenarios:
1) Using the same video in multiple courses
Sometimes a video created for one course is also useful for another.
Here’s an example…
I love to use Workflowy for planning my content. It’s a simple tool but there’s a learning curve so I’ve recorded a short video showing people how to use it.
Using the embedding trick I just taught you means that I can use the same video in multiple courses.
2) Using a video multiple times in the same course
Sometimes I’ll add a video underneath a lesson to demonstrate a concept in action.
But I also like to have a page at the end of the module that collects all of the resources together for easy reference.
Using my handy video vault I can embed a video in as many places as I need.
3) Embedding a lesson video in a community post
Using this mechanism, I can even embed a lesson video in a Podia community post.
For instance, I have a small group programme with a community where my members can ask me questions.
If someone asks a question that’s already answered in an existing lesson, I could just say “Go check out Module 3 Lesson 5”.
Or… I could be super helpful and embed the lesson directly in my reply.
(Yes, this technique works for any course video - not just the ones in your vault.)
I could even (and this is a real power tip) embed the video in such a way that it starts playing at the most relevant point in the video.
Just add “&start=TIME” at the end of your embed link, where TIME is either a number of seconds like “23” or a duration like “2m43s”.
Ready to Power Up Your Podia Videos?
As you can see, just one little hack can open up a world of powerful possibilities with Podia videos.
Just remember that with great power comes great responsibility (to create awesome videos!)
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