Let’s face it, vlogging is the future of YouTube—at least for a while.
With content that easily spans 10 to 15 minutes, vlogs rack up watch time like crazy. Audiences are enticed not only by the content, but by vlogger’s personalities, their relationships, and how they go about their day—making them a great medium to mint loyal fan bases who come back on a weekly, or even daily basis.
Though the best vlogs seem organic and spontaneous, this can serve a guise for the amount of strategy that goes into making them truly entertaining. In fact, it is very easy to make a couple simple mistakes which render your vlogs rather uninteresting. With this, here are some of the most common mistakes aspiring vloggers make when just getting started:
The largest drop off times for video on all platforms alike is the first 20 seconds. If your audience is not engaged then, they will not watch the rest of your video, and your watch time and virility will suffer. Whether it is an intro to the video’s over-arching subject matter, or a quick snap shot of action to come, it is absolutely imperative to snatch audience’s attention right at the start.
A lot of vloggers suffer from shaky camera, poor framing, and lack of variety in their vlogs. Make sure to not spend the entire time self-filming hand held, but instead try to mix it up, have fixed shots, add transitions, take extra care to keep the camera steady, and add cinematic flavor to your vlogs. Keep in mind that at the end of the day, vlogs are entertainment, and the filming process of the best vlogs is not entirely organic or natural, even though the end product may feel that way.
If you are really trying to captivate audiences, you need to do much more than simply document your life. You need to frame a story in your vlogs. As simplistic as this sounds, so many vloggers never truly figure out how to tell compelling stories. The ability to do so is the biggest differentiator between those who succeed and who fail. Too many vlogs don’t have cohesive plotlines, they don’t have conflict or desires or character interaction. While mastering storytelling is a never-ending process, a good place to start is by making a plan, thinking about where the story is going before pressing the record button. This doesn’t mean you need to stick to a script at all, just having an idea of what direction the vlog will bring cohesiveness, and the surprises will then feel even more genuine and spontaneous.
It doesn’t matter how good the content of a video is, if no one ever sees it. An unfortunate reality is videos, especially on YouTube, get recognized and played far more often because of the thumbnail/title combo than the actual video content itself. This is not to say the content is not important, because it is in order to captivate fans once they find themselves on your vlogs. The mistake is great content goes undiscovered because creators and vloggers spend far too little time on these metadata aspects of the video. It is important to push yourself a bit out of your comfort zone to make eye catching, sometimes even click-baity thumbnails.
This one is a bit of a cheat, because it’s not really about vlogging—it’s about personal motivation and overcoming anxiety. But the reality is a lot of people are afflicted by the disease of procrastination when it comes to making their first upload. Some common excuses people make are they don’t have the right equipment, they are too busy with school or sports or work, or they don’t think anyone will watch their vlogs. The reality is you don’t need fancy equipment, you don’t initially need a lot of time, and you don’t need to have your audience figured out right at the very start. Many of the most popular vloggers, from Jake Paul to Casey Neistat, started producing viral video content without all those things. The one thing all the greats have in common was they were not afraid to start, they weren’t afraid to make mistakes (even the ones listed above), and you should not be either.
If you are itching to start a vlog or make your first upload, there is no better place to learn all the industry secrets (and what other vlogging mistakes you should avoid) than from Jake Paul’s Edfluence.
takes 90 seconds