Vlogging, or video-logging, has become a pretty big thing for the YouTube community. A lot of the big YouTubers do it, even if it’s not their main form of content. There is something particularly personal and direct about vlogging, and it can be a unique form of valuable social content.
Whilst there is no right or wrong way to vlog, and by all means no two vloggers vlog the same way (which is part of what makes the format such a unique one), here are some do’s and don’ts that may help you on the way to starting your very own vlog.
DO find you own style: Vlogging is a great way to express your own personal flair and style. Being the controller of your own creative content allows for you to truly be free in your expression and opinions. So above all else: Be yourself.
DON’T just copy someone else: Nothing is more detrimental to your vlog than to just be copying someone else’s style and format, as audiences may feel there isn’t anything new to be offered. You want to attract your own audience, not someone else’s. Whilst it is completely okay to take inspirations from other successful vloggers (and it can be extremely helpful to do some research), be sure not to just mimic them. No one likes a Ditto.
DO try to keep a regular schedule: Whilst this is not compulsory, it can be helpful in growing a subscription list because audiences may prefer to have a regular stream of content from you. It also keeps them hooked when they know there’s more coming. Just be sure that you create reasonable expectations you can meet.
DON’T make it a chore: Vlogging should be a platform you are comfortable in. If you do have a schedule, but you don’t feel like vlogging, inform your audience (such as via Facebook and/or Twitter). People have sick days off work too. Don’t force yourself to produce something if you’re not confident it will be content you are proud of.
DO accept helpful criticism: As with any other form of creative content, it’s important to be open to helpful criticism. Even if your vlog content on YouTube may be free entertainment for them, it shouldn’t stop you from taking well-thought-out comments from people to improve yourself. Vlogging should be as much for your audience as it is from you!
DON’T be fazed by haters: An unfortunate, dark underbelly of the Internet is that “haters” and “trolls” roam it freely. If you don’t know what those two words mean: Welcome to the Internet. In short, they are people that maliciously target people online, out of no logical reasoning or evidence. Try to ignore them. If they have no backing to their criticism, try not to let their hateful comments get to you. They are doing it for their own sadistic pleasure.
DO be consistent with your content: Whilst it may be good to cover a wide range of topics in your vlogs, ensure you’re not stretching too much. People tend to like a general expectation to be met, and when you suddenly verge off into a different style, it might not be met with warm reception. Your subscribers are there for a reason. A one-off vlog that tackles an isolated matter or incident is mostly acceptable, but try not to jump from style to style too much. Instead, evolve and develop your style into a format you’re comfortable with.
DON’T be a bore: It is key to remember that this is free content on YouTube. People watching on YouTube aren’t mostly looking for serious, heavy content, and will not hesitate to skip over something unappealing. If you want to talk about serious things, it is completely doable, so long as you’re confident that your audience is the right kind to receive it well. News and scholarly topics can be equally tackled well if you have the right presentation with it.
And finally, DO have fun with it: This is YouTube, not television! This is completely your own content. So have fun with it! It’s always good to inject some humour into your vlogging (but be wary of your subject matter, of course). Find a way you can have fun making your vlogs, and naturally, people will enjoy watching them too.
That’s it! I hope this article inspires you to vlog. I genuinely believe vlogging to be such a uniquely wonderful form of entertainment, and there are plenty of amazing vloggers on YouTube right now. But the awesome thing is that anyone can join their ranks. So grab a camera and get talking! Good luck!
Also, remember that SocialGO can be a great place to promote your vlogs! Embed your YouTube videos, and start discussions about your content. Get to know your audience, add extra content such as accompanying blogs, and improve your vlogs!