If you want to know how to start a vlog, this piece of content is for you. YouTube is not just a site to watch viral videos, makeup videos, etc. It offers you many more to explore if you want to. You can actually call it the digital powerhouse and the second most visited website on the Internet right after Google. The mainstay of YouTube is Vlogging or Video blogging.
I have literally seen my fellow bloggers shifting towards Vlogging and they are earning pretty good. And that’s the beauty of YouTube- anyone can start with it at any time. Whether you are a business person or you are an office goer, nothing really matters, you can start with your own YouTube channel.
All you need to do is to be consistent and upload good and natural content. Keep your audience engaged to your channel and I am sure you can reach the success soon.
Confusing? Well! Don’t worry when I am here. Read below to find out how to start a vlog? I have made a detailed guide on how you can start with making youtube videos. Follow with me to make your YouTube channel grow bigger and bigger.
So without further ado, let’s jump into the article right now.
How To Start A Vlog in 2021
(Step 1) – Purpose To Start A Vlog
So you have made up your mind to shoot videos and upload them on YouTube. Right? Well! That’s a great idea always to have a YouTube channel if you are passionate about shooting videos. But that isn’t always right to upload videos without any purpose. Along with proper research, you will require to understand for what purpose you want to shoot videos. I mean to say, it is very important for you to let your audience understand your channel’s purpose. When I started with my YouTube journey, I had these questions on my mind.
- How to start a vlog?
- What am I going to do in my vlogs?
- What Am I going to say to my audience?
- Is my channel going to focus only on me or I will include my friends or relatives in the near future?
- Whether I want it to on a specific subject like makeup or traveling or will include more topics?
- Who all can watch my videos?
Now tell me what do you understand by the term “Vlogging”? Well! Let me tell you the real meaning of it. Vlogging is a mix of spontaneity along with your everyday activities. Thus, I would suggest you can start with Vlogging your day to day activities that can involve cooking, exercising, getting ready, and so on. And then with time once you start gaining more followers, you can incorporate new and fun activities to spice up your vlogs.
Now, you may think that sharing your daily life activities can become boring for the viewers to watch. But let me tell you that there a good number of people who actually prefer watching videos that they can relate to. Thus, there is no reason to shy away from filming your daily activities.
On the other hand, if you are looking to make videos on a specific topic and finding difficult to come up with amazing video ideas, then you can always check out other YouTubers and draw some inspiration and ideas. One important thing that you should keep in mind is that you have to upload videos frequently. Now decide how frequent you want to be. Whether you will upload a vlog daily or weekly one or two? Whatever you choose, it is always suggested to stick onto that routine.
Once, you understand the purpose and know what to do, it is time for you to decide on the content.
(Step 2) – Decide Your Content
The very next step that I did was to think about the content. It requires some brainstorming ideas about what you exactly want to record. Think about what topic you want to include in your vlog. Remember, you should have fun while recording it. Whatever ideas you come up with, always write it down. I suggest you create a content plan for at least a month as it will take off the pressure from you. As a result, you can record your videos more freely and things will fall in place smoothly.
I think nothing can be better than making natural, impromptu vlogs, and play it by ear. You can further ruse your editing skills to make it even more flawless. However, it can be a real struggle for a few to be spontaneous and natural in front of the camera. I advise you to make reminders or you can script down your first few videos. If you stuck at finding ideas, you can always check out top Vloggers and their channels that match your niche and draw some inspiration from them.
(Step 3) – Get Some Vlogging Inspiration
Launching a new channel on YouTube? Then, I assure you will have some amazing opportunities to stand on the shoulders of giants. In that case, I recommend you to take a little bit of inspiration from them. To do that, you need to look out for the bloggers you like and side by side some of the popular YouTube channels that are related to your niche. List out all of them. At least, that’s what I did.
I used to find out what exactly they are doing to make their vlogs stand out. Moreover, I recommend you look for something that you can provide your audience which those vlogs aren’t providing. That will be a plus point. Isn’t it? No, don’t get me wrong. Taking inspiration doesn’t mean you should clone-copy another blogger. Remember, audiences are in the urge of original and unique content. They are looking for a new take on the things they desire or love.
Now you may ask me- whether I should come up with a new idea never seen before? No, not at all. All I am asking you to do is to add your own personal touch to the topic so that it stands out from the rest. Invest your time and see what this platform has to offer and start working from that point.
(Step 4) – Get Equipment To Start A Vlog
Now once you are done with gaining some inspiration and have some content plan, it is the right time to get the basic equipment to record your videos. There are many new aspiring YouTubers who think that they need to invest in all the expensive and high-end video recorders and gadgets. No! That is absolutely wrong. Nothing like that. There are many successful Vloggers you now use gears that can compete with the professional filmmakers. But, they didn’t start off with all those. So don’t get carried away.
And you are lucky that in today’s generation due to the advanced technology, you can make videos using just a smartphone. In fact, modern mobile phones come with up to 4K video quality, so you can shoot amazing videos. See, you can use your mobile phone to make videos if you don’t have enough budget to spend right now on a DSLR.
Alternatively, you can for a budget-friendly DSLR, a dedicated camcorder, or a mirrorless camera. I always prefer going with the model that comes with a reversible screen as it helps me to monitor things. However, it is not at all necessary. Just remember you no need to spend huge on a DSLR. As long as you have the equipment to shoot high-resolution and clean videos, you are good to go with.
Now after DLSR, what are the other important gears that you must have? Recording a video with a nice resolution isn’t enough, you require a nice sound too. And trust me, this is the biggest problem that many Vloggers face. Even I have seen Vloggers posting videos with absolutely no sound or awful sound. Believe me, no one wants to watch such kind of videos.
You can always invest in a good microphone to see a noticeable difference. Standard boom microphones can be a good option as it attaches directly to the camera. And if you have the budget, you can go for the lapel microphone. Again if you are planning to shoot outdoors, then you need good windscreens. Keeping in mind to get a good tripod as it is essential to have one while shooting videos. There are several types of tripods, selfie sticks, more that you can find in the market. In fact, some DSLR comes with free tripods as offers or gifts. So that can be a good choice.
Last but not least, is the lighting. Tell me what is the most common thing that all professional YouTubers have? Well! They all have a good amount of lighting. Believe me, I know how much a simple ring light can make a difference. It illuminates my face and gives a professional touch to my videos. You can also set up a couple of box lights as it lightens up your background. These are quite affordable and takes minutes to install.
(Step 5) – Shoot Video
And with everything above ready, you can finally start making videos. Let me tell you my experience and trust me this is the most difficult step in the whole process that I had faced earlier. Despite having all the preparations done correctly, I used to get nervous when it was time to hit the record button. But, I used to make myself remember that if I have to be a successful Vlogger, then I have to start somewhere.
What I suggest is that you create an outline of how you want to make your first video. Make sure you stay calm and relaxed and yourself while you are shooting the video. User Authenticity is always rewarded by YouTube. They mostly prefer vloggers who are more comfortable, natural, and fun to see. Here I want to share with you certain amazing tips to help you make your videos and make most out of your screen time.
- The first thing is to be interactive. Yes! Interact with your audience and don’t consider them as just statistics and numbers. You will see several people having different thoughts and opinions. So while you talk in front of the camera think that you are directly talking to them. Try to ask questions and invite them to leave comments or queries.
- The next thing that you should think about is not getting afraid, have some fun. Remember, you are not recording it live so take your time to try out new things and then have a fun time. The best part I feel is that you always watch back and omit some clips you don’t like. And the only key is to not feel pressurized while saying the right thing.
- Another tip that I still now follow without missing is being personal. YouTube audiences always like to see the real personality of the Vlogger. This is because it makes them easy and comfortable to connect with you. I feel you must convey them your personal stories and don’t forget to speak with passion related to the topic.
- Last but not least is to add personal phrases to the starting and ending point of your video. It is actually a pretty common practice among the Vlogging community. And most of the reputed Vloggers have their own signature phrases or some hand gestures. So it is a nice idea to use some personal touch to your video and it can be a part of your branding in the near future.
(Step 6) – Edit Video
Now assuming that you are done with shooting your first ever video for your channel, I suggest you take some time to edit it. Editing is the most essential factor out of all as per my point of view. Creating a good video with proper editing is a must to impress your viewers and gain followers. In fact, there are certain vlogs that have launched empires depending on quirky editing alone. No, I am not saying that you have to do some groundbreaking editing to be successful but at least make sure your videos are clean and professional looking.
When I started my YouTube journey, I was not aware of all good video editing Softwares available in the market. But, with time I came to know about all the amazing editing apps available. If you have the budget and if it permits you, then opt for the Adobe Premiere Pro or Final Cut Pro. However, if you are short in budget and looking for something affordable, I would suggest you go for the free apps on your Mac or Windows. Mac has an amazing video editing app called iMovie, in fact, Windows comes with Windows Movie Maker. Trust me they are equally good, unlike the paid ones. And if you record on your smartphone, you can find several good apps for your Android and iPhone.
Also, remember when you are editing your videos, try to keep it as real and good as possible. If you find any awkward silences cut it down and compile the clips into a cohesive story. I really like to implement graphics, do some audio balance as well as some color correction in my video. I feel that just gives the required balance it needs to make the video better. However, it is entirely up to your choice of how you want to edit your videos.
In case, you are not knowledgeable enough to edit your videos, you can always hire contractors to get the editing job done for you. I would recommend you to look for freelance editors on gig sites. Keep in mind to make sure that you tell the freelancer about your ideas clearly. This will help them to understand what you actually want and you will get the desired result.
(Step 7) – Upload And Optimize Video in Youtube
Out of all the steps, I find this one easier. Yes! It is actually pretty simple to upload videos on YouTube. But it may take some time depending on the internet speed, resolution, and overall size of the file. Now, listen to me carefully, while you put your video to upload and render, it is advised you start optimizing it. Optimizing your videos is a mandatory step to do to ensure they are seen. There are several ways to optimize your videos.
YouTube is basically a large search engine providing access to over more than millions of videos. Treating your Vlog or videos as a webpage will help you optimize them using search engine optimization techniques.
Here I am going to mention certain ways that I have followed and still following to optimize my videos. Go through them carefully to understand.
a) Write Eye-Catchy Titles
The most important factor to keep in mind while you think of optimizing your videos is to have eye-catching titles. Yes, titles are the best way to attract viewers. Make sure your titles are concise, clear, quirky, and eye-catching. Now, before publishing the video, always try to write down some keywords related to your video. Try to use the most powerful keyword in your vlog title. As a result, it will increase the chances of your videos popping up and ranking up on the results page for that specific keyword.
b) YouTube SEO
Another important factor that I want you all to implement in your videos is SEO. With proper tags, you can achieve millions of users. Tags play the role of SEO to rank your YouTube videos. You can add the tags using the Creator Studio of your channel. always try to choose the tags that pertain to the content. This is because those tags are usually used by YouTube to have a better understanding of your video. Often it can be used to recommend your channel or video to the audiences or may include your videos on the results page.
c) Creative Attractive Thumbnails
The last thing to do is to create attractive thumbnails. It is the visual representation of your video, you can think it as the box art for a DVD. This will give your viewers a quick idea of what you have to offer them. So I would suggest you make this an eye-popping one.
The YouTube Creator Studio has a tendency to select a random thumbnail from the video screenshot. But, I have seen many professional YouTubers making their very own thumbnails. You can use video or photo editing software for this. There are a number of thumbnail styles available in the market, you can choose as per your wish. I would suggest you use bright colors, simple and neat text, and attractive backgrounds.
(Step 8) – Promote Your Video
If you have optimized your videos well following the above methods I have stated, then you should start seeing some views. However, you must not expect a huge flow of viewers. Remember, YouTube is all about consistency and patience. Your target should be to gain back those followers for your next videos and how to keep them engaged to your channel.
When you start uploading your videos after completely optimizing them, you will see viewers will start commenting on your videos. It is advised that you take out your time and reply to those comments. This way you can have a good interaction with your viewers. However, don’t make negative comments or criticism personally. And the last thing you don’t want to happen is to get into a fight with any one of them in the comment section. Remember, this is the world of the internet and here people can be unnecessarily rude because they are anonymous. “Don’t feed the trolls”, this is what they say on YouTube.
Responding to your subscribers will allow you to get engaged to them. You should create a social media page or some social media accounts. I did that and invited all my viewers to follow me on those platforms. And trust me, I gave me a huge boost along with that I made a great connection and bond with them. I even started promoting my new Vlogs there which got me some organic growth over time. So, you can say a mandatory step to do if you want your YouTube channel to grow faster.
(Step 9) – Grow Your Brand
I have seen several new vloggers come up with this question that when they can start monetizing their channels! Let me tell you that over the years YouTube has changed its policies quite a bit. As of now, you must have a minimum of 4000 watch hours along with 1000 subscribers to associate with the Google AdSense partner. Now, once you hit the said milestone, YouTube will automatically review your channel. In case, your channel is approved for the program, you will be able to show ads before you videos to earn from them. Google pays you a certain amount based on impressions as well as viewership.
I find this to be the easiest way to earn money from my YouTube channel. However, this isn’t the only solution and the sky is the limit I believe when it comes to making money. Having a large base of audience and viewers willing to support your channel, you can earn huge.
And the best part is that once you reach a level of success, then you can start expanding your brand and look for some other way to earn revenue. I personally love taking brand deals and I have seen my fellow vloggers release unique products and merchandise. However, before doing any of this, just remember you must gain enough audience and build a brand.
(Step 10) – Use Analytics To Improve
While I started my Youtube journey, I had none to help me out (I wish I could find such an article) regarding how I can improve my content reach. But don’t worry as here I am going to tell you how you can use the YouTube Creator Studio to analyze and improve. Once, you are done uploading and optimizing your video, then you must go to the YouTube Creator Studio. Trust me, it is a great help as with this you can have access to all the important analytics information. With your videos growing, you can adjust the content as per your requirements. You can see several types of data and can find information regarding the location of your users, their age, gender, and more.
I could even find the audience retention graphs that have helped me to understand how long people have watched my video and at what time they decided to click off. What you can do is once you see the time people have watched the video and then clicked off, you can go back to your video and see what made them click off. Analyze your mistake and do the adjustments in your next videos. I would suggest you do this until the time you find what works best for both your audience and you.
Having a sweet spot will help you in retaining the followers and will increase it as well. Another thing that I did was to use Google Analytics to craft my content. I would suggest you make videos on all the current trending topics. With the help of Google Analytics, you can see some popular keywords, and thus, you can craft your content accordingly.
How To Start A Vlog Final Verdict :
I hope you have gone through the whole article and now you know everything about how to start a vlog. Vlogging is a huge thing and it is not possible to know all at a time. I would always suggest you check out each and every step I have mentioned and do it on your own one by one. After each step come back to the article and read the next step and follow. And I think with time you can yourself understand what other implementation you need to do to make your videos work better than the rest.
In case, you have any more queries, please do let me know. You can directly comment down below and I will always be there to help you out.