11 Steps to Becoming a Successful Video Blogger
A danger for any brand in the online space is the lack of personal connection with your audience.
Video blogging lets you put a face to your brand and combine useful, fun content with information about who you are and what you do.
More than 50 percent of marketing professionals say video content as offers the highest return on investment. Video blogging is highly competitive however, so have a plan and follow best practices as you would when creating any marketing campaign.
The style and content of video blogging, of course, varies wildly between different channels and industries, but there are proven steps to success that should be the foundation of any successful video blog:
- Invest in your equipment
- Invest in your environment
- Invest in your software
- Use subtitles and captions
- Build an identity
- Provide value
- Find sponsors
- Distribution methods
- Schedule content
Invest in your equipment
If you want your video blog to be taken seriously, you can’t compromise on production quality. No amount of slick editing will hide the fact your video was recorded on a smartphone or laptop webcam. Invest in a high quality camera, and the same goes for your audio equipment.
The last thing you want is for your video to be unpleasant or frustrating to listen to.
The computer you will be using to edit videos should also be considered. A slow machine will slow your production time and potentially overall quality as a result.
Invest in your environment
Creating content with acceptable audio and video quality needs more than just the right equipment.
Do you have a location suitable for recording?
Poor lighting or acoustics can make your video look sloppy. That doesn’t mean you need to rent a professional studio, but make sure your environment is well-lit with natural or at least neutral lighting, and is free from background noise or echoes.
Acoustic and lighting panels are a low-cost solution capable of making most indoor locations adequate for recording.
Invest in your software
Unless you are outsourcing your video editing, you will need to invest in video editing software.
To save on costs and systems to learn, be sure to use a video editing application also capable of basic audio mixing and editing such as Lightworks. For a video blog you won’t need a separate audio editing package.
Use subtitles and captions
Many of your viewers may be watching without audio due to being on the move or at work. If you have a global audience, they may not speak your language fluently, or at all.
Translation and transcription tools and services will greatly increase your reach in these scenarios and save you the time and trouble of transcribing subtitles and captions or finding translators on an ad-hoc basis.
Build an identity
When it comes to building and keeping your audience, it is important to show a personality your audience can relate to and identify with. The most effective video blogs are never purely factual, but instead, provide insight into the perspective and mindset of the blogger.
Don’t be afraid to give your opinions and attitudes.
A core audience returning regularly to your channel will only appear if your video blog provides consistent value to your viewers.
Pay attention to your analytics to understand which videos performed best with your viewers, and focus on the style of those videos.
Try to cover as varied topics as possible while staying relevant, and from many angles. Giving similar opinions on similar topics will quickly fatigue your audience, who will feel that they have heard all you have to say and there is no reason to keep watching.
Finding the right sponsors can be a great way to earn some extra income from your video traffic.
Reach out to businesses with products and services that are relevant to your channel and complement any products and services you offer.
You will usually be expected to give a personal review or recommendation in your video blog of the sponsor, so it is vital your sponsors are brands you believe in and are enthusiastic about, or your credibility is at risk.
Securing deals and discount codes for your audience is another way to earn from sponsors as well as provide additional value to your viewers, and by distributing codes via email or SMS this can also be used to generate marketing opt-ins.
While video blogging is a competitive industry, working with other bloggers in your field can be a major asset. Collaborations and guest appearances can introduce new audiences to your channel of people who are interested in you or your blog but might never have looked for you by themselves.
Work your way up the ecosystem by collaborating with channels of a similar size to your own in order to provide mutual benefit through sharing audiences. As your channel and reputation grows, bigger video bloggers can safely promote you without risking their own credibility.
YouTube is the simplest choice with the largest available audience when it comes to where to upload your videos.
Although these videos can be embedded and linked to on your own site and blog as well, it can be advantageous to release content early on your own site before uploading to YouTube, in order to get your most engaged viewers regularly visiting your site.
Encourage your audience to subscribe to your channel and notifications about new videos. Subscriptions and notification alerts will improve your search rankings and visibility through YouTube’s algorithms.
As an added bonus for users who opt-in to your SMS marketing you can send texts linking users to videos not yet publicly shared.
There is such a thing as uploading too much content.
If you are putting up more than one video every few days, you might exhaust your audience and increase the likelihood of regular viewers missing a video and breaking the habit of checking out every new video you upload.
On the other hand, upload only once a week or less and it can be hard for your videos to become established in your audience’s routine.
There is a limit to how much great content you can produce each week, whether due to your workload or simply limited weekly news in your area. Don’t burn yourself out, and find a balance that keeps your audience engaged and you can see yourself continuing for a long time.
Set out your release schedule for your audience so they know when to come back for new content.
The Final Word on Successful Video Blogging
Regardless of your skills, interest or industry, video blogging done right is an extremely effective way to increase brand awareness and credibility, and potentially earn some extra income through ads and sponsors along the way.
Following these steps will give you the foundation of a great video blog, but always remember that it is vitally important to optimize your style, content, and schedule based on feedback to meet the needs of your target audience.
Alexa Lemzy is a customer support wizard and blog author at text messaging service – TextMagic. She is excited about building strong relationships with customers, new approaches to customer support and smart small business growth. If you have a question or an idea to share, contact her at @Alexa_Lemzy.