Thinking about getting started with vlogging (finally, I know you’d be thinking about it for a long time)? Starting to vlog means that you will have to be very open with your life and what’s going on with it. You should now be afraid to stand in front of a camera.
But I guess that you had that figured out already. Starting to vlog while being afraid of a camera = bad! However, there might be a couple of other things that you need to think about before getting started. Continue reading to find the 10 questions you need to answer before starting to vlog.
What Will Your Videos Be About?
This is definitely an important question that you need to come up with a good answer to. Simply saying your day or your life isn’t detailed enough. Your channel needs to have a twist or a focus. What is the main subject or attraction going to be that your videos will emphasize?
Sure, you can create general videos that include all sorts of things and you shouldn’t feel limited, but you need to go ahead and lay out what your videos are going to look like most of the time. Is it going to be prank videos? Is it going to be trick videos? Is it going to be personal and emotional? Figuring out what your primary videos are going to be about will help set the tone for your channel.
Once you have set the tone for your channel, you can take things from there.
What is Your Unique Angle?
This ties into the last question of setting the tone for your videos by figuring out what they’re going to focus on. When figuring out what your videos are going to be about, that’s going to help you start to think about the tone, feel, and focus your channel will take on overtime.
At the same time, you need to come up with a unique angle. Simply vlogging about surfing or pranks isn’t going to get you that far. People can find videos on those topics all day long, what are they going to see on your channel that makes it different? Sometimes your personality in itself can make for a unique angle–the funny jokes you come up with in the blink of an eye or the way you look at things–other times, you’ll have to get a bit more creative to bring that “wow” factor to your channel.
Are Other YouTubers Already Doing It?
This question can really throw you off the trail because, generally, the answer is going to be a big fat yes. Although sometimes you can come across a focus that isn’t really being done on a massive scale, like coin collecting, generally you’re going to find that a niche is either being vlogged about by thousands or it’s only being done by a handful of people.
Neither instance should turn you off to the thought of vlogging about it yourself so long as you bring that unique angle to it. The more popular a particular niche is, the more you need to focus on what that unique angle will be. In other words, you need to put in the extra effort to help your channel stand out since space is so crowded by other vloggers as it is.
Who is Your Audience?
Once you have figured out what you’re going to vlog about and what your unique angle is going to be, you can begin to figure out who your audience is that you’re going to be speaking to. This is important so that you can guide the assembly and marketing of your videos later on. It will also help you determine the stylistic aspects of your video.
For instance, if you want to offer business and entrepreneurial advice, you don’t want to try and address everyone. Who’s your target audience? Some YouTubers have found great success focusing on a younger audience of very motivated teens/young adults who are looking to start their own business. They take advantage of the general tech-savviness of this crowd and give a lot of cool ideas and advice, and it has paid off well for them.
On the other hand, you might choose to target an untapped audience with your vlogs. It depends on where you want to take things.
How Often Will You Upload New Videos?
You might figure that you can just upload videos as you please, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth. In order to have a successful channel, you have to have a steady and reliable upload schedule. This means uploading on a consistent basis each week.
Generally, you should try to vlog more often–especially when you’re just starting out and trying to build an audience. As your channel gets more and more videos up, you’ll find the growth of your audience begins to snowball. On the other hand, if you only post 1-2 videos a week, growth is going to be a lot slower because there are fewer videos for people to see and discover you through.
You can start with vlogging as often as possible and then commit to a steady schedule of 2 or more videos per week. Some people even do weekly vlogs, but usually, you’ll be wanting to publish other video content in the meantime to keep people interested.
How Much Time Do You Have?
Now, before you jump into the world of vlogging, this is a big question that you need to ask yourself and then answer honestly. The answer to this question is going to help you determine whether or not you have the time to truly devote yourself to the vlogging schedule that you’ve determined.
Do you have enough time to film and edit two vlogs a week? How about just one? More importantly, do you have enough time to find good content for every vlog you put up? Remember, at the end of the day, you have to focus on quality over quantity.
Although you might be able to find your way around an editing suite, it’s probably going to be better for your channel’s success (and your schedule) in the long run if you outsource editing to someone else. That will help save you time and lead to a better end result.
How Will You Make the Videos?
Speaking of quality, this is an important point that needs to be addressed. Most people today have a smartphone that will be a perfectly acceptable way for you to record your vlogs. If you invest in a tripod or selfie stick (or this Selfie Stick Tripod on Amazon), you’ll be able to get super stable videos out there too and it will dramatically increase how they look and feel for viewers.
With that said, you may also find that you do better with a more professional setup. Depending on what you’re recording, you may need to invest in a microphone or two and maybe a professional video camera. For instance, those vlogging about music will definitely want more than the built-in microphone to record whatever they’re singing or playing. A microphone that I have is the Rode smartLav+ on Amazon, which you can wear while still being on the move, which I found great. Often, you have these bulky microphones in front of the computer, and how often do you see a vlogger sitting in front of the computer in all videos all the time?
Similarly, if your vlog is about photography or a similar topic, you’re going to want to go the extra mile with your production.
Where Will You Promote Your Videos?
Although Youtube’s search function might lead to some small-time discovery for your channel, if you want your videos to take off and you want to get subscribers to your channel, you need to do some promotion for your videos that will help it grow more quickly.
Figuring out where to do this promotion is the real challenge but there are many choices for you to pick from. For instance, you might choose to promote your videos through your own website, via Google AdSense, on Instagram, on Facebook, and through a variety of other platforms. Asking for mentions from influencers in your niche may also be a good way to market your channel to new viewers.
However, you choose to go about it, make sure you have a plan. Don’t just dabble in promotion and marketing, be actively working to grow your channel each week and figure out what works best.
Are You Ready to Invest Money?
Now, once you begin to think about promoting your channel, the big question comes up: are you ready to spend money? You can do a lot of promotion for free, but if you want your channel to go places, you’re probably going to have to spend a little bit of money on marketing.
Additionally, if you want to produce really high-quality videos, you are probably going to have to invest some money into editing and maybe even equipment to get them put together correctly. Buying a new camera, a microphone, and so on can really add up. It will also cost money to have your videos edited (if you choose to go that way) each time you publish one, even if you choose a cheaper freelance site like Fiverr to find your editor.
Whatever the case may be, ask yourself if you’re ready and willing to put some money into growing your channel. If so, how much?
What Do You Want to Achieve?
When you begin to ponder whether or not you want to put money into your channel, you’re probably going to end up asking yourself this question at the same time. In fact, this should be one of the first questions you consider because it’s going to have a bearing on many of your answers.
Basically, you have to think about what you’re after. Do you want some small-time internet stardom? Do you want a passive income stream to complement the money you’re making at your day job? Of course, we all have big hopes and dreams, but be realistic about what you want to do with your channel.
Next, once you have your long-term goal lined up, go ahead and ask yourself where you want to be in the next 6 months and in the next year. What sort of growth do you want to see? That answer will help you determine your time and money investment. Write it down and make it visible for you, so that you always get reminded of why you started, especially during the hard times.