If you run a blog, you can’t have missed the current trend for video blogging. The YouTube generation is well and truly here, and the benefits of video to search rankings and user experience are being sung from the rooftops. And, product reviews and how-to videos also give you an excellent revenue opportunity. So, why aren’t you doing it?
1. YOU DON'T HAVE THE KIT
People often think video blogs should be professionally recorded with a high-spec camera, full lighting rig and struggle for final cut that James Cameron would be proud of. If you’re someone who runs a blog in your spare time, this can be a big barrier to getting started vlogging.
The truth however is that only companies with incredibly tight brand guidelines need to worry about this, and to be honest, even they could probably do with a little humanity and realism in their videos from time to time. Most blog readers actually appreciate a touch of the home-made feel. It looks ‘real’. So, all you really need is a camera, and every phone has one these days. A decent mic might be a sensible investment. But, don’t worry about the quality of your production too much; the quality that really matters is the quality of what you have to say.
2. YOU'VE GOT NOTHING TO SAY
Hold on, aren’t you a blogger? Bloggers have always got something to say, that’s why you started blogging in the first place. Your writing allows you to express those opinions, but no matter how talented a scribe you are it’s difficult to see how your personality could ever come through as clearly as it would in a video. If you’ve made the effort to set up a blog and build a community of readers, putting yourself in front of the camera is a great way to build a closer relationship with that community.
3. YOU HAVEN'T GOT TIME
If you’re a regular blogger you might have a set routine, like a particular evening of the week you set aside after work for a new post. You know how much time it’s going to take, not accounting for writers block of course, and you’re comfortable with that. Vlogging is an unknown, the whole process from recording a video to getting it on your blog probably seems pretty daunting, but once you get the hang of it, it’s quicker than getting words on a page.
Think about it, you record yourself on your phone and when you’re done you watch it back before hitting the ‘Upload to YouTube’ button. A few seconds later you’ve got a link which you just need to copy and paste to your blog. Perhaps turning to vlogging might even be a time-saver for a busy blogger, and enable you to get more content out there?
4. YOU'RE SCARED OF THE CAMERA
Some people love the camera and the camera loves them. If you’re not one of those people, and I count myself here, the idea of getting in front of the camera and creating something the whole world can see can be a horrifying idea.
The thing is, while you might care that you’re having a bad hair day, your voice sounds different to how you thought it did, or the lighting in your room isn’t quite right, your audience doesn’t. They’re after your thoughts and your ideas, not perfection. Now, we’re not saying running a comb through your hair and finding an attractive corner of your home to film in isn’t a good idea; it’s just not the be-all and end-all. Get some honest friends to give you some feedback on your first few shoots.
5. SOMEONE ELSE IS DOING IT BETTER THAN YOU
You’re new to vlogging, while loads of other people have been doing it for a while and are amazing at it. This is true, and no, you probably won’t be as comfortable in front of the camera as them for a good period of time. But, does this mean you shouldn’t be doing it? No. It might mean that you do a few test shoots, and spend a little longer editing the first few times. If your writing is worth reading, then your vlogs should be worth watching.
Vlogging gives you a new, more personal, more accessible way to connect with your audience. What you say is unique to you, and we all know that showing a bit of personality is key to building a community. So, go on, be brave… it’s worth it.