Vlogging and growing your YouTube channel can be very difficult.
To help you become a successful vlogger we’ve compiled a list of 25 tips and tricks every vlogger needs to know.
General Vlogging Tips
Set A Goal
If you want to be successful in vlogging it’s important to set a goal. If you don’t know what you want to achieve with your vlogs you don’t know the steps you need to take to get there.
What is it that you want to accomplish with your vlogs? Do you want to get over your camera shyness, get better at video editing or do you want to reach 10.000 subscribers and get sponsorships?
Set a few small short-term goals and some bigger long-term goals so you know what you are working towards and can adjust when necessary.
Find Your Passion
A lot of people are creating vlogs based on what they think will get the most views. This is a huge mistake which will prevent you from ever becoming a popular vlogger! You can try to fake enthusiasm at first but after a few vlogs your viewers will see that you don’t really like what you are doing. It will also become increasingly difficult to get yourself motivated to vlog if you have to talk about things you don’t enjoy talking about!
Find your passion and create your vlogs around that passion. Your passion can be fitness, fashion, gaming or any other hobby or sport.
Select A Niche
Try to find a niche for your vlogs that you are passionate about, is big enough to attract viewers and subscribers and isn’t extremely competitive.
Of course your passion and your niche should overlap so you also enjoy creating videos about this topic.
Understand Your Audience
It’s important to understand who your (potential) viewers are and what they like and dislike. How old are they, what are they passionate about, are they male, female or mixed?
Once you have a good idea of who your audience is you can better tailor your vlogs to your audience.
Consistency is key if you want to become a popular vlogger. Almost every popular vlogger with many subscribers has been on YouTube for at least a few years. Some have even been on YouTube for 10+ years! Even after all those years they still regularly upload quality videos.
Be consistent in when you upload, how much you upload and in the quality of your vlogs so your viewers know what to expect. You will not get many subscribers if you suddenly stop uploading for a month.
Add a Regular Theme Or Segment To Your Vlogs
Most vloggers have a recurring ‘thing’ in their vlogs that they are known for or that their viewers love. This can be a unique way to start or end the vlog but it can also be something that you do regularly.
This regular ‘thing’ in your vlogs can also be something that you do a lot in your vlogs or something your audience asks for. For example, popular vlogger Casey Neistat, regularly bought a $1 pizza and that became a regular segment. He also did ‘mail time’ one or twice a week when he would open packages sent by viewers.
Another popular vlogger, Jon Olsson, answers one of his viewers’ comments every single vlog.
What Can You Cut Out?
Most vloggers only think about what they can add to their vlogs but never think about what they can cut out. Ask your viewers to leave a comment with feedback or check your analytics to see if there is a certain part in your vlogs where a lot of viewers stop watching.
It might be hard to cut out certain parts of your vlogs, especially if they have been a part of your vlog for a long time, but it will make your vlogs better.
Follow Trends and Participate
Always try to stay up-to-date with the latest trends and participate in them as early as possible. Videos around a popular trend are much more likely to go viral than a regular vlog so this might help to grow your YouTube channel.
Trends can also include actualities like holidays.
Focus on Quality (Not Quantity)
Make quality the primary focus of your vlogs. Many vloggers try to stick to a daily vlogging schedule even though they don’t have enough footage to make an entertaining vlog everyday. Always focus on making high-quality vlogs that your viewers will enjoy watching, even if that means you only upload 1-2 videos a week.
Upgrade Your Hardware
Always focus on improving your vlogs in terms of quality.
Tell a Story
Humans like stories. The most successful vloggers understand this and try to tell a story with their vlogs instead of a compilation of random clips. Try to take your viewers through your day with your vlog.
This doesn’t mean that you have to film every meal and every minute but when you film in different locations, show a part of the journey. Most vloggers record a clip in location A, then in location B and put the clips together during editing. Good vloggers like Casey Neistat also film walking out the door, getting in the car and arriving so your viewers feel like they are with you during your day.
Whatever you do, just keep uploading. This part is so incredibly important because most beginning vloggers give up when their channel doesn’t grow as fast as they’d like.
Keep going, you never know when your big break might come 🙂
Tips For Recording Your Vlog
Here are our best tips for when you are recording your vlogs.
Make The First 15 Seconds Count
The human attention span is getting shorter each year. Research shows that the average attention span in 2015 is 8.25 seconds (down from 12 seconds in 2000). This is even shorter than the attention span of a goldfish!
So if you want your viewers to watch your vlogs to the end you need to make the first 15 seconds of your video count. The best way to do this is by making them curious about what is going to happen in your video. Tell something interesting or show a glimpse of what is going to happen later in the vlog in the first 15 seconds after the video starts.
Be Unique and Stand Out
There are already so many vloggers out there and there are new vloggers starting everyday so you need to find a way to stand out from the crowd. There are many ways to differentiate yourself from other vloggers like your editing style, what you do or talk about in your vlogs or even who you are as a person.
Vlogging is very personal and being yourself is very important. Don’t try to pretend to be someone else and do things you don’t enjoy because you think it will get you more views or get you sponsorships.
Be true to yourself and let your personality shine through in your videos.
Talk to The Camera Like Your Talking To Your Friends
A good way to make your vlogs more personable and connect with your audience better is to try to pretend like you are talking to your friends instead of a camera. This helps you talk in a more relaxed, spontaneous manner that is also more enjoyable and personable to watch for your viewers.
Use The Right Tone and Words
Always try to talk in a friendly and enthusiastic manner like you are excited to share what you are saying and doing. If you vlog about a certain topic that you are extremely knowledgeable about try to avoid jargon as your viewers might not be as knowledgeable in that area. If they don’t understand what you are talking about they will click away to watch another video.
Also don’t be afraid to use humor in your vlogs. People watch vlogs for their own entertainment so make them enjoyable to watch!
Look at The Lens Instead of The Screen
Having a camera with flip screen can make vlogging much easier since you can see yourself and know if you are fully in frame. Having a flip screen camera works great but it’s very tempting to look at the screen instead of the camera lens. When you are not looking at the camera lens it will feel like you are not truly talking to your viewers.
Tips For Promoting Your Vlog
Promotion plays a big role in the success of your YouTube channel. You won’t magically gain a million subscribers overnight after you post your first vlog so you need to promote your YouTube channel to grow. Here are our best tips for promoting your vlogs.
Commenting on Vlogs And Blogs
A great way to promote your channel is to participate in the conversations in your niche by commenting on blogs and vlogs. Participating in the conversation does not mean spamming or shameless self-promotion!
Leave insightful comments that contribute to the discussion, constructive feedback or your own viewpoint/opinion. When others in your niche regularly see you commenting and participating in discussions they are more likely to check you out.
It’s also a great way to build a relationship with other vloggers, bloggers and influencers in your niche.
Use of Social Media
Use the power of social media and other similar platforms to promote your vlogs and YouTube channel. Share your content on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and any other social media websites you use.
You can also post on websites like Medium, Quora, Tumblr etc.
Collaborate With YouTubers
Once you’ve build an audience you can also collaborate with other YouTubers to cross-promote each other to your audiences. This works best when you collaborate with YouTubers with a similar sized and type of audience.
A vlogger with 200.000 subscribers doesn’t want collaborate with a vlogger with 200 subscribers because it’s not mutually beneficial. So find a channel with a similar amount of subscribers.
It can take a long time before you gain any traction in your niche and on YouTube. It can be very demotivating to put in a lot of effort to create vlogs and promote them and only gain a few subscribers but don’t give up yet.
Getting started is the hardest part of your journey. Once your channel gets bigger it will rank better in YouTube and you’ll grow faster with less effort. Just keep hustling for the initial growth!
Build Your Brand
Simply put, your brand is who you are, who you want to be and who people perceive you to be.
This isn’t limited to your channel name. Everything you do is part of your brand.
Your videos: how to look, how they are edited..
You: What you do, what you look like, how you talk..
Your channel: Titles, thumbnails, information..
The way to build a brand is consistency in these areas.
Complete Your YouTube Profile
Make sure you’ve completed your YouTube channel to enhance your brand and rank better in YouTube.
Add your social media accounts, write a channel description, add a channel thumbnail and banner, create a channel trailer. This helps make you look more professional and help your channel grow faster.
Video Titles and Thumbnails
Once your video goes live you only have two ways to convince users browsing YouTube to click on YOUR video. The title and the thumbnail.
Getting these two right can be difficult but it’s worth it to spend time on. Try to make the viewers curious about your video so they want to watch it (without being misleading!). Making your video titles misleading can actually get you banned from YouTube while abusing the custom thumbnail system might mean your thumbnail privileges get revoked, so make sure you follow YouTube’s guidelines.
Keep your title short, to the point and try to include keywords you want the video to rank for.
Look for Feedback
There is always room for improvement. You can learn how to improve your vlogs in two ways.
First, listen to the feedback your viewers give you. Read their comments and see what they like and dislike about your vlogs. You can also ask your viewers what they want to see you change in the vlogs to make them better. Your viewers will really appreciate that you value their opinion.
The second method is to check your YouTube analytics report. You can get a lot of valuable information by going into Creator Studio and look into things like the drop off point. The drop off point is where your viewers stop watching the videos. If they stop watching after 15 seconds, try improving your intro. If they stop watching at the precise moment you vlog about a certain topic, stop including footage about that topic in your vlogs.
You can find the drop off point of your videos by going into your account > Creator Studio > Analytics > Audience Retention. Remember that this information is only valuable once your audience is big enough. If you only have 50 viewers this data can be skewed because of the small sample size.
Try Other Mediums
Just because vlogging is your main medium doesn’t mean you can’t do anything else. You can also start blogging, live streaming or build an audience on social networks like Instagram. This is an opportunity to attract a new audience and you can promote your vlogs to that audience when it grows.
YouTube Fan Finder
Not too many vloggers seem to know about this but YouTube has a program called Fan Finder. Fan Finder allows YouTubers to create an ad for their channel, upload it to YouTube and then YouTube will find potential fans to promote your channel to. It doesn’t get much easier than that!
To learn more about Fan Finder you can go to www.youtube.com/yt/fanfinder.
At the end of your vlogs always ask viewers to like, share, comment and subscribe if they liked the video. A lot of viewers will forget to do so if you don’t remind them to do it.
When you receive a lot of likes, comments and subscribers on a certain video YouTube will see that the video is well received. This can have a positive impact on your ranking in suggested videos and search.
Use Royalty Free Music
YouTube’s contentID program will automatically check if you use any copyrighted songs and will take action if you use any. This can mean you are unable to monetize the video, the audio will be muted but after three strikes they can also ban your account.
To prevent any of this from happening you should always use royalty free music in your vlogs. Don’t know where to find that? Check out our article on how to find music for your vlogs.
Test, Test, Test
And our final tip is to just keep on testing. Keep trying new things: long videos, short videos, different topics etc.
Don’t be afraid to try out new things. Evaluate and adjust if necessary. Use feedback in the comments and YouTube analytics to analyze the success of these changes.
Hopefully these tips and tricks were helpful for you!