How to launch a successful vlogging career

Fancy launching yourself as a professional vlogger? Discover the five essential ingredients of a successful vlog, and how to get started on yours.

Over the past few years, blogging has grown in popularity as a viable career option. But what if you have plenty of ideas to share, but aren’t comfortable with writing?

Luckily writing a blog isn’t your only choice. If the written word isn’t your thing, you could consider launching yourself as a vlogger.

What’s a ‘vlog’?

A vlog is basically a video blog – a blog that consists of videos rather than written blogs. (To find out more about what’s involved, read our interview with vlogger Charlie O’Brien.)

The aim of bloggers is to regularly post interesting, valuable content in the form of videos. You might use a vlog to add another dimension to your written blog, or as the sole channel through which to connect with your audience.

The five ingredients of a successful vlog

Either way, the recipe for a successful vlog is made up of five essential ingredients.

1) An angle

Just like blogging, a successful vlog begins with a clear angle. Whether you’re providing makeup tutorials or everyday thoughts and insights on motherhood, your vlog should be created with a certain audience in mind.

Equally, it’s important not to vlog simply for the sake of vlogging – make sure it’s something you not only have plenty of knowledge on, but also something you’re extremely passionate about.

2) A name

Just as branding is crucial to traditional business, a successful vlog also needs a winning name. To be more exact, you will need a name for your channel – something memorable and catchy – as well as an interesting title for each video post.

3) Regular, quality content

The key to starting and maintaining a successful vlog is valuable content which is updated regularly. If you plan on posting once a week, try to establish a set posting day so that your viewers know when to check out your channel. This will also give you a schedule to work to, making it easier to keep your vlog consistent.

4) Personality

No matter how interesting the topic or how valuable the content, a vlog will flop if these aren’t conveyed in the right way. It’s crucial to deliver your content clearly, dynamically and with plenty of personality.

This is perhaps the most influential factor when deciding between a blog and a vlog, so think carefully about which option suits your character best.

5) A viewing community

Having first-class content is almost never enough. Another essential aspect of vlogging is building a community, so be prepared to link your vlog to social media and interact with your viewers via comments. Connecting with other vloggers in your industry can also be a great starting point when it comes to building up a following.

Getting started as a vlogger

So if you think you have the makings of a successful vlogger, it may be time to make the leap and go live.

Once you have a clear theme for your vlog, you will need to create your own channel – YouTube is the most popular platform to date, and signing up is relatively straightforward.

Firstly, you’ll need to create a free Google account, and the unique Google username you choose will also be the name of your channel. Secondly, log into YouTube with this account and create your own channel via the “My Channel” link.

Many people use YouTube to turn a hobby into a career (some vloggers earn up to a staggering US $1.5 million every month).

Filming your vlog

When it comes to filming your vlog, the location – or ‘set’ – will depend largely on your chosen topic area.

It’s possible to start out with a fairly minimalistic approach, using little more than a laptop, webcam and whatever props may be necessary to help deliver your message. The picture and sound quality should be clear, so experiment with lighting and ensure you have an adequate microphone.

Get inspired!

Above all, recording a vlog should be fun and is an opportunity to share your passion and insights with a wider audience.

Watch the video below for an idea of how vlogging is done, and for further inspiration, check out these top 10 YouTubers of the moment. Happy vlogging!