I have Vlogged in the past and I’m sure I’ll Vlog again, but I do watch a number of top Youtubers on a daily basis. Here’s my quick guide to get yourself up to a minimum standard if you’ve decided you want put that ugly face of yours on screen.
Step 1 – Recording Equipment
Mr Casey Neistat, lord saviour of Vlogging and pioneer of the gorilla pod movement says it doesn’t matter what you start recording with. Most people considering Vlogging will have a mobile/cell phone, so just use the front facing camera on that. ]
If you want to invest a little bit of money the Canon G7x with it’s flipscreen is probably the most popular recording device on the Vlogging market. Cheap and cheerful.
If you’ve decided you want something more heavy duty than the G7x or a similar model, then you’re looking at DSLR territory. You want something with Autofocus really otherwise you’re going to be blurry most of the time.
Step 2 – Accessories
If you’re using more than a mobile/cell phone then you’re probably going to want to invest in a little Gorilla Pod, which is basically a flexible tripod that screws into the bottom of your camera. It’ll allow you to record yourself at a decent distance without your arm being held out, plus you can put it down on almost any surface so that you can talk to the camera without holding it. You’ll also want to buy a few extra batteries and SD cards for the cameras, as they’ll inevitably run out juice or be full of storage at exactly the wrong moment.
Step 3 – Your Story
Even if you use the best software EVER with the most expensive camera equipment in the entire world, if your story sucks then no one is going to care. The most important part about any Vlog is telling the viewer something interesting. It doesn’t even mean you have to do anything interesting either, you could literally be sat in your room doing nothing, but if you’ve got a good story then people will watch.
When it comes to telling your story, confidence is key. It’s partly why I’m a pretty average Vlogger, because I say “um” and “arr” and don’t have confidence in what I’m saying half the time. If you look at someone like Ben Brown, FunForLouis or Casey Neistat, they all project unparalleled confidence.
Step 4 – Editing Software
Once you’ve recorded your Vlog you’ll need to somehow edit it and upload it to your channel. Using software like Premiere, Vegas and Final Cut don’t take too long to learn the basics, but (if you’re buying this legally) then you’re going to pay a pretty penny. There is plenty of free alternatives however and most PC’s and Mac’s will come with something like iMovie or Windows Movie Maker. The sooner you get onto one of the aforementioned softwares the better however.
Step 5 – Uploading
The final step once you’ve created your story is to upload to Youtube or similar video sharing platform. YT is going to be your best bet if you want to make it big, but there has been plenty of stories of stars being made from uploading to Facebook, Twitter, Vimeo, DailyMotion etc. You need to make your video seems appealing and that people will want to click on it. You can do this with interesting pictures or titles. Or both.
Step 6 – Patience & Understanding
Last in the list is the key of them all, patience. Unless you land in an exceptionally lucky position, you’re probably not going to be able to Vlog and suddenly get thousands of people watching you. You should never start Vlogging with the intention of becoming Youtube famous, because the reality is it’s unlikely to happen. You should record, edit and upload your life because it’s something you enjoy doing, not something you need to do in order to make money.
By Mike Kent (@DexertoMike)