The Ten Commandments of Video Blogging

Video blogs are a great way of keeping in touch with your clients, customers or subscribers, in a highly visual manner. Creating a video blog has become increasingly simpler these days, especially with integrated webcams, screen capture programs, and easy-to-use video editing software.

Plenty of people have made money and driven tons of traffic to their website from video blogs, and it’s easy to get started, if you follow these ten pointers.

So how do you create a compelling, valid, and fun video blog (or vlog)?

1: Start by planning the video blog, and mapping out what you want to say.

It’s obvious that introductions go first, and here you should say who you are, what or who you represent and what the video blog is all about. Welcome your viewers to the video blog warmly, and state that this is the, for example, 33rd episode in your video blog.

2: Write the entire thing out

At the very least, if you know what you want to say, write markers that remind you of the next point.

Feel free to add pointers in places where you need to use emphasis, change your tone of voice or other things you can do to make your video blog flowing and smooth.

3: Make sure you have good lighting

Light is crucial to the quality of a video. What you may be seeing in any preview or recording window is illuminated by your own monitor, so, test run first. Record a segment, play it back, see if the light, and of course the sound if you’re talking, is just right. Remember, spending time on a video blog is pointless unless people can see and understand what you’re saying.

You can achieve the same results with a little careful planning

4: English please

Of course, given that you are speaking English. Any language is fine, as long as that’s what your audience requires. Accents are fine, there’s nothing to be embarrassed about, but grammatical errors are inexcusable. Just make sure you’re understood just fine, unless of course, you’re video blogging about obscure accents.

5: If you’re a dude and have a sister…

..get her to do it for you. Sorry guys, women command much more instant attention. Lasting attention too.

6: Use Camtasia

Seriously, Camtasia is awesome. If you’re showing off a website, or showing people how to do something in Photoshop or any other application, the best way is to record screengrabs well. Camtasia happens to do it awesomely well.

7: Watch the length

Too long and people won’t watch to the end. Too short and it’s a blur. Find the right length, and stick to it, especially if you’re making a regularly timed series, like a Sunday Special.

8: Use suitable music

I understand that you like obscure jazz, or opera, or death metal, sincerely, I do. But not everyone does. So use proper music, music that matches what you’re trying to convey.

9: Use images

If you mention something that can be illustrated, make it easy for me to visualise it; show me a picture. You’d be amazed how much that aids comprehension.

10: Stay in touch

Why are you making a video blog? To be heard, and to start a conversation. So, make sure that communication lines are open. Mention your website (and show me the URL on screen), and at the end of the video remind me to subscribe to your newsletter, follow you on Twitter, and like you on Facebook. And if you’re selling something, now would be a good time to give me a promo code.

Mark Debono

Author Mark Debono

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