You have decided to learn how to start vlogging to supplement your blogging career and make a living from it.
Vlogging involves creating videos for an audience, and the best of all is that a ton of people are making a living from it.
The question, though, remains: how do I start a vlog and make a living from it?
In this post, I will walk you through, step-by-step how to start a vlog and make a living from it. Heck, I’ll even give you hacks and tips to help you succeed with your vlog like other vloggers.
So without further ado, let’s dive in.
Vlogging: The Frequently Asked Questions
What is Vlogging?
Vlogging/ video blog/ video blogging is the art of publishing your videos online, and it has become the model used by a ton of companies to advertise today.
Usually, a vlog could revolve around a vlogger’s lifestyle, or any other activity that YouTubers thinks could be of use to his or her audience. Heck, some video content creators create video blog posts (vlogs) to talk about an upcoming event.
In a nutshell, vlogs are similar to a written blog post. The only difference is that vlogs involve creating a video to give insight to a specific audience that a vlogger’s audience is interested in.
Can I Make a Living Vlogging?
There’s no doubt that vlogging is a lucrative career, and that’s why you want to become one of the video bloggers like Casey Neistat.
Casey Neistat’s most popular videos (one has 69 Million views)
You have heard vlogging success stories, and that alone is enough to prove that yes, vlogging is a lucrative career, and you can make a living from it.
Usually, it will take you some time to start making a living because earning from a vlog will require you to have a following. The bad news is that growing a fanbase that trusts and loves your vlog isn’t easy.
But that shouldn’t worry you because I’m going to walk you through how to build your vlog brand and start making money vlogging.
What Do I Need to Become a Vlogger?
Okay, you now understand what vlogging is, but don’t know what tools you need to get started with vlogging.
You can start a vlog using your smartphone camera. Heck, you could even earn a few bucks from it. If you have a bigger dream, to take your vlogging business to a professional level, you need some of these tools:
- Video Camera
- Editing software
1. What is the Best Camera for Vlogging?
If you are serious about starting a vlogging business, you will need more than just a simple camera – a good quality vlogging camera with high definition qualities like Sony, Canon, GoPro for best viewing.
Having the best camera will ensure your videos are of high quality, which is a plus to you and your audience. After all, nobody loves watching poor quality videos.
Below are some of the features you should look for in a camera:
LCD screen that can flip round to the front
You want to see yourself when you’re filming. For vloggers: essential!
Image quality and resolution (Full HD or 4K)
You can live without 4K, most YouTubers upload 1080p (FullHD), but 4K enables you to crop into and reframe your video and still output them in 1080p. 4K is future-proof.
Autofocus system with effective tracking
This is a huge advantage if you’re recording yourself moving, as you won’t be able to adjust the camera while you’re filming. Face and eye Autofocus can be a great advantage here.
External Mic port
Improves the sound quality of your video content. The better sound makes your video much more professional.
Great photo quality
You don’t want to carry 2 cameras with you, so check the photo quality of your camera also as you also need to capture still.
Top Vlogging Best Cameras
1. Canon EOS Rebel T6 Digital SLR Camera
2. Sony RX100 20.2 MP Digital Camera
3. PANASONIC LUMIX ZS100 4K Digital Camera
4. Nikon D3500 DSLR Camera
5. Canon PowerShot G9 X Mark II
6. Sony ZV-1
What is the Cheapest Vlogging Camera to Start?
These Cameras are Under $200:
2. How Do I Find the Best Tripod for Vlogging?
Now you could be wondering why you need a tripod and below are the answers:
Tripods enable you to position your camera, which eases your work, especially when you are recording yourself.
Assuming you have your cameraman, still, having a tripod will enable him or her to tilt or pan the camera smoothly.
In most cases, vloggers record themselves, and a tripod helps your camera with the stability it needs when doing video recording.
Lastly, you can adjust the height or angle depending on your position for a better video recording.
Now that you know why a tripod is essential, what are some of the features you should consider in a tripod, or features you should consider before purchasing a tripod?
- Flexible legs for easy positioning
- Lightweight and durable
- Features a quick-release clip
- Ergonomic joystick design
- Bubble leveler
- Counterbalance spring
- Mirrorless camera
- An action camera
Best Vlogger Tripods
3. What is the Best Light for Vlogging?
If you are serious about doing daily vlogs, you can’t rely solely on natural light. You need a better lighting source to supplement the low-light you already have and produce good video content consistently.
Therefore, invest in a lighting system. It will not only make you look better on camera when doing your video but also highlight the essentials to your viewers more clearly.
Finally, the reason why I recommend that you invest in a lighting system is that poor lighting can draw the attention of your viewers, so secure a good lighting system and have more professional videos done for your fans.
Best Vlogging Lighting Equipment
You can also check out the following:
4. What is the Best Video Editing Software?
Finding the best editing software is simple: Check out my article on Best Video Editing Software
Not everything you record will be of use to your viewers. It is, therefore, necessary that you get yourself an editing software that will cut off the fluff you have in your videos before publishing them to your viewers.
Have no mercy, and cut the clips that don’t seem to offer value to your viewers. Your viewers are looking for quick information, so don’t nag them or waste their valuable time. In other words, make your video brief and on point.
Lastly, when you decide to invest in editing software, make sure that it’s easy to use with all the features you want. If you are not sure about the best video editing software, be sure to check these to see if they fall within your specifications.
P.S. – vlogging requires a stable internet connection because you will have to upload your YouTube videos on YouTube. If possible, install Wi-Fi. Alternatively, you can hotspot using your smartphone.
Begin Recording Your Vlogs
This is not a tool or something you need, but I’m assuming that you now have the tools you need – so what’s next?
Begin creating your own video blogs. Don’t put too much pressure on yourself to create the best videos. If it’s your first time, you may not be perfect, but consistency will perfect your art.
Once you have done a few vlogs, don’t hesitate to publish and promote them on social media, as well as your friends.
During this period, it is better to create more videos and do a lot of promotions to get your name out there. Come on, you’re just starting, and the chances are that nobody knows that you are a vlogger.
Tips to Get Started with Your Vlog
You have the tools ready. You are looking forward to starting your vlog. The problem?
You don’t know how to get started with creating video blogs.
Good news because I’ll help you get started, stand out from the crowd, and help your viewers find solutions to some of their problems.
Below are some tips to help you begin your vlogging career. (P.S. – I advise that you test these tips and see what works best for you. You are free to drop what doesn’t suit your needs.)
1. Check out on What’s Trending
The online space is not as easy as some bloggers put it, though, it can be a goldmine if you are ready to think critically and do what your competitors aren’t doing.
That said, you must check out what’s trending and incorporate it into your vlogging business because the chances are that your viewers are looking for what’s trending.
Staying up-to-date can seem tricky, but if you follow already popular vloggers, then nothing can stop you. Make sure you check out your emails because that’s where most influencers put their information to their subscribers.
Below is how you can find what’s trending:
2. Choose Your Niche
For chrissake, don’t be a generalist, and here’s why:
Being a generalist makes your viewers think that you are out to make money from your vlogging business and not to help them solve their problems.
This is dangerous because your primary objective should be to help your followers solve their problems while making money on the side.
That’s why you need to choose a niche, a topic that you are passionate about, a topic that you can easily talk about and give a ton of advice.
And while it is also important to choose a profitable niche, make sure that it is something you have passion for.
3. Build Your Brand
I mentioned earlier that you should be prepared to get your name out there when you begin your vlogging career because the chances are that not a ton of people know about you.
The good news is that you have many options to choose from to build your brand. For example, you can promote your videos on social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, directing viewers to your vlog platform – be it YouTube or Vimeo.
Additionally, promoting your video content on different social media platforms can give you insight into what’s working and what’s not, bearing in mind that you are a beginner.
Finally, keep an eye on what other successful vloggers are doing and single out the best tips and incorporate them into your vlogs. If the same tricks have worked for other people, the chances are that they may work for you too.
How to Make Money Vlogging
If you just came across vlogging recently, the chances are that you are wondering how vloggers make a living vlogging.
It could be that you have heard how bloggers make money – it could be through paid ads, sponsored posts, or commission marketing (affiliates).
How vloggers make money isn’t that different from the above ways, so in this section, we are going to dig much more in-depth on ways vloggers make money. I have categorized it into two sections – traditional and the most current ways.
1. Sponsored or Paid Posts
When I talk about sponsored posts, I mean video content created by companies to promote their business or brand.
In our case, you will act as the influencer who advertises another brand to your subscribers and get compensation. The compensation could either be in the form of money or any other thing, depending on your agreement.
But first, you will need to grow your following before you can attract the attention of brands who’d want you to help them market their businesses.
In other words, you need to have close to 10k viewers, and when you do, start building partnerships with businesses that are a perfect fit for your fanbase.
Finally, be sure to check out platforms such as Famebit to help you market your niche to potential brands who may be interested in working with you.
2. YouTube Ads
To start monetizing your YouTube vlog, you need to have at least 4,000 watch hours in the last twelve months and 1,000 subscribers. Once you have attained this, you can register for the YouTube Partner Programme, so that your YouTube channel can start showing ads.
It will take some time to get approved by YouTube. Once you are approved, your YouTube channel will start showing ads, and you’ll earn some commission when a viewer clicks your ads or watches them for at least 30 seconds.
And if you are not sure about the type of YouTube ads you should go for, check out this post to find more. I’m sure you will get an insight on YouTube ads.
3. Affiliate Links
Affiliate links are also a way to make money vlogging, but they don’t generate much income as compared to sponsored posts. Below are the steps to earn commissions as an affiliate through your vlog:
- Decide on brands you’d love to promote. This can be done in two ways – first, you can apply for affiliate programs of the brands you have selected or register for Amazon Associates Program.
- Once any of those platforms accept you, you will be given a unique affiliate link that your users will use to purchase products or services you promote.
- Add your unique affiliate links to your video description or in the video and encourage your viewers to take the offer you are promoting.
- When a viewer buys a product or a service using your affiliate link, you will earn a commission.
2020 Ways to Make Money Vlogging
The ways we discussed above are traditional ways. I’m not claiming they never work. What I mean is that they are the most common ways.
That said, let us now look at the current and unique ways to make money vlogging in 2020:
1. Selling Video LUTs
Let’s start by defining what LUTs are. Well, LUTs, also known as “Look Up Tables,” are numbers recognized by a software, then alters the colors of images. These are usually known as filters.
The truth is that color grading is a complex process. On the contrary, adding LUT to your footage may be relatively simple if you want to create top-notch color grades. And the good thing about this is that your subscribers or viewers might be interested in your good-looking LUTs and opt to buy them from you.A good example is Sverre Ryland Glomnes, a travel vlogger who takes pride in creating impressive videos and shares them on his YouTube Channel. He then sells the LUTs, sound effects, as well as transitions on the Sellfy account.
In a nutshell, Sverre makes a living from vlogging through selling by-products of his video blogs. And to create these beautiful videos, he has to edit and even color-grade them. So why don’t you give this a shot if you have some video editing skills?
2. Selling Photo Presets
I can guess it – you are probably asking yourself how do photos come into vlogging?
Here’s the thing:
A ton of vloggers have a presence on Instagram, and because Instagram is a photo-sharing social platform, vloggers need high-quality images along with videos.
The chances are that you know the importance of being uniform across your online platforms. Heck, you might even know about Lightroom photo presets that can help your video clips, as well as photos, look good.
K1 offers a YouTube tutorial about how to apply Lightroom presets to your video blogs. In their video, they have added a Sellfy link where interested viewers can purchase a preset package of their choice.
3. Selling Vlogger Kits
This is another way to make money from your video vlogs, and it is relatively simple. Combine all the elements you are using in your vlogs and sell them online. For example, VFXnut’s Vloggers Pack sells Buttons, Openers, End frames, and other elements in one package.
Tips to Make Money Vlogging on YouTube
I’m guessing you are now ready to start making money through vlogging.
You have everything you need – from the tools to what you should expect.
Well, what you need now is to know some tips to help you speed up your process of earning through your vlogs.
1. Ask Your Subscribers to Like Your Videos
I know I’m trying to tell you to be too bothersome, but likes are crucial. They might not contribute to you earning money from them, but they are indicators to other viewers that your video content has authority.
YouTube takes into account the number of likes your video content generates and uses that to rank your videos high on the search results. If your videos consistently generate many like, then YouTube will recognize that your video content is valuable to viewers, hence pushing it up.
2. Ask Your Viewers to Subscribe to Your YouTube Channel
You have a goal when you start a vlog business – to get subscribers, offer value to them, and make money. But it’s hard to make a living from vlogging without many subscribers, so ask your viewers to subscribe.
It’s the worst idea to assume that your viewers will remember to subscribe once they finish your watching your videos. Majority of them are too busy to remember that they should subscribe. So remind them for each video you create.
3. Get Viewing Time Down
Your biggest nightmare is to get your viewers to watch your video content from the start to the end. That’s why vloggers include, “please watch this video to the end because I have a surprise for you.”
If you viewers were able to watch your videos from the start to the end, then it sends a clear message to YouTube that people love your video content. So YouTube will start pushing your video content up so that more and more people can watch, subscribe, and like.
I’m glad that you stayed up to this far. You now know how to get started with vlogging and even make a living from it.
This step-by-step guide has all you need to get started with your vlogging business or career.
And the good news is that you can make a decent income from creating video blogs. Now is the time. Begin today and be patient as you build steadily.
It’s not a quick-rich scheme, but once you take off, you will enjoy the benefits.
Success in your vlogging business.