Blogging

My Favorite Vlogging Tips and Tricks


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I’m so excited about today’s post! Yep, you read that right – my favorite vlogging tips. I don’t really do much “behind the scenes” talk around these parts, but I always find these kinds posts very interesting! To me, it’s intriguing to see how bloggers actually manage their blog and what helps them be successful.

For this post, I have collaborated with some other fabulous bloggers in what we have coined our “Better Blogging Blog Tour.” Each of us has put together an informative post on a topic we feel confident about. Mine? Vlogging tips. Getting behind the camera! So let’s jump right in! (And don’t forget to check out the other ladies’ posts I have linked at the bottom of this one!)

My Favorite Vlogging Tips and Tricks by blogger Meg O. on the go

Vlogging seems to be scary if you’ve never done it before. Talking in font of millions of people on the internet…. letting them see your face, your mannerisms, hear your voice, etc. It can be a little overwhelming, especially if you’re used to expressing yourself through your writing. I’m here to tell you that it’s super fun! I’m definitely no professional, but I feel like videos are one of my strengths in blogging and I love to talk about how I do it all. There are some things to help your videos look better, and we’re going to get to that in a second.

But, my friends…. you must remember one of the most important vlogging tips I’m sharing today:

Always talk to the camera like you are chatting with your best friend and be yourself! You could have the prettiest makeup, clothes, background, hair, and your video is edited to the nines but if you have zero personality…. NOBODY CARES! Laugh at yourself, sing in Italian (not like I’ve done that before…hahaha), crack jokes. If you aren’t a “bubbly” person, or straight up crazy like me, that’s still okay. Just be you – talk to us like we are your best friends.

Now, let’s get to the nitty gritty for the best vlogging tips.

Gear

  • The most popular choice for filming gear, especially for beauty gurus, is using a DSLR with video capabilities. I have the Canon 60D, and the 70D is a popular choice because it has continual auto focus.  Another popular budget friendly choice is the Canon T3i (although it’s discontinued by Canon).  These are all popular because they have a swivel screen. You can set the camera on a tripod and flip the screen out to make sure you are in the frame. The Canon T5i is probably the best budget-friendly choice because it has continual autofocus.
  • If you have a camera that doesn’t have a swivel screen, put a mirror behind your camera to make sure you are in the frame. I used to do this before I upgraded.
  • A tripod is almost essential for this. I tried to set my camera on tops of books and man, setting it all up took more time than the actual filming. You don’t need an expensive tripod. I have this one and it works just fine.
  • A camera remote is essential for me. Since my camera doesn’t have continual autofocus, I sit in the frame, focus with the remote, and hit record with it as well. This one was super cheap off of amazon. You can also use it for epic selfies.
  • If you are using your computer’s webcam to vlog or even an iPad/phone, that is perfectly fine. Don’t feel like you are less of a vlogger because that’s what you have.
  • Many people use lights when filming and have found luck with this set, as it’s budget friendly and top rated on Amazon. It is not necessary, but having plenty of light is.
  • As of July 2015, I got this ring light from Amazon, and I use that with the combination of natural lighting.

Setting up Your Filming Spot

  • The most important thing is to have plenty of light. Before I had my ring light, I filmed on the floor of my master bedroom (most of the time) in front of two windows. I would open the blinds to both windows and I make sure it is in the middle of the day and no direct sunlight is streaming in.
  • With my ring light, I turn around and sit in front of the curtains (on the floor) with the windows behind me and have the light stream in as fill light, while sitting in front of the ring light. It would be awesome to have a filming room, but this setup works just fine for me.
  • Make sure your filming background isn’t too distracting. I sit in front of a chest of drawers, a wall, or white curtains. Sitting in a pretty bedroom is nice, just nothing too cluttered.
  • Set the camera up on the tripod a little higher than head level and angle it down towards you for a more flattering look. Avoid that double chin!
  • If you are using a laptop or iPad/phone, set it on top of something at head level and angle it downward.
  • If you are using a DSLR, you can get a nice background blur if you sit closer to the camera and set your F-stop lower. I even do this on my kit lens.

While Filming

  • Sometimes it’s good to write an outline of what you’ll be talking about beforehand, so that it keeps you on topic. I do this a lot, especially with my end of year favorites videos.
  • Make sure to introduce yourself and what you will be talking about! I always make sure to say “Hey everyone! It’s Meg! Welcome back! Today we’ll be talking about….”
  • Look at the camera lens, not yourself in the screen. This is hard not to do. I always check the viewfinder to make sure I’m in focus and in the frame, but looking at the camera lens is the equivalent of making eye contact with your audience.
  • I always aim to keep my video under 10 minutes when edited. That means when I am filming I try to be as brief as possible. If I have been filming for 20 minutes, it is going to be hard to edit, so keeping it brief during filming makes it easier for me later. If it’s an in-depth tutorial, that’s a different story. I look at it this way: I don’t typically like to watch videos that are longer than 10 minutes on YouTube, so I try to do the same on my own channel.
  • Editing is your friend. If I completely mess up, I pause, say “3, 2, 1” and re-start. When I’m editing, I know I can take that out. If I ramble, I just take it out.
  • After I film, I always snap a selfie to use as my thumbnail. Sometimes I’ll hold up products or make a weird face. Whatever tickles my fancy. Ha.
  • Using a call-to-action in your videos is a good idea – encourage people to like, subscribe, and follow your blog. I need to do this more often.

Editing

  • Editing does not need to be professional. I use iMovie on my MacBook Pro. It’s very easy to use. As long as you can put in some titles and cut out parts of a video, that’s all you really need to know. My most used edit is the split clip (command+B) and delete clips I split in between. Then I add titles and music and that’s it.
  • There are tons of iMovie tutorials on YouTube that will walk you through simple edits – give them a watch and you will be a pro in no time. YouTube even has its own editor that’s supposedly easy to use!
  • I always make sure to use Royalty Free music on all of my videos. YouTube has a great library you can download music from for free.
  • I will take the selfie I use for my thumbnail, and add some text over it in Photoshop, but PicMonkey does the job! I then always upload my custom thumbnail when uploading my video to YouTube.
  • I make sure to use the thumbnail as featured image in WordPress when I post the video on my blog, so that it shows up when shared on facebook, bloglovin’, etc.

YouTube

  • Did you know that videos rank high with SEO? That means when someone googles, videos are likely to be among the top search results. This is why you need to vlog.
  • Set up your YouTube Channel using your Google+ account so it’s all connected to your blog.
  • Make sure to tell us on your blog how to subscribe to you on YouTube, and make sure you link to your blog on your YouTube channel!
  • Use the YouTube subscription bar to tell us how to follow you on other social media platforms.
  • I also use the description bar to put in my keywords.

There you have it! I hope my favorite vlogging tips and tricks have helped you! I also hope they’ve inspired you to make a video. I’ll be your first subscriber! If you have any questions or comments, leave them below.

My Favorite Vlogging Tips and Tricks by blogger Meg O. on the go

Want some more behind the scenes tips from some of my favorite bloggers? Make sure you check out the other posts in our Better Blogging Blog Tour! Click below and be enlightened.

7 Twitter Tips to Increase Your Following and Grow Your Brand

5 Tips to Keep Your Facebook Page Alive

10 Tips to Using Instagram More Efficiently

8 Must Know Pinterest Tips for Bloggers

What to Know When Switching from Blogger to WordPress

How I Got on The Huffington Post

Blogging with a Partner 101

59 Comments

  • Reply
    Tabitha Blue
    February 5, 2015 at 8:24 am

    SO SO good!!! I’m going to step up my vlogging game! I’ve done it a little, but I think these tips will really help me stay focused and do even more of it! Thanks so much for sharing all the details!

    🙂
    ~Tabitha

    • Reply
      Meg O.
      February 5, 2015 at 9:20 pm

      Vlogging is so fun and I’m glad that my tips helped!! Thanks for having me in the blog tour!!

    • Reply
      betoscorpion
      February 17, 2016 at 11:58 pm

      Thanks. Nice tips!
      I actually have my YouTube Channel.

      My problem happen when I don’t have ideas to videos. Hehe.

      Grettings!

  • Reply
    Tawnya Faust
    February 5, 2015 at 9:28 am

    I LOVE these tips, I’ve totally wanted to get more into vlogging but it scares me! I even have a Cannon 6D (no swivel screen) but I know it’d work and a tripod. You’ve got me thinking now 😉

    • Reply
      Meg O.
      February 5, 2015 at 9:19 pm

      YES! You should do it. Your camera is WAY MORE BOSS, even though it doesn’t have a swivel screen! Doing the mirror trick (especially with a full length mirror leaned up against a wall) is an awesome way to make sure you’re in the frame, along with using the remote. Do it do it!!!

  • Reply
    Kristy
    February 5, 2015 at 10:21 am

    Man, now I want a new camera! 🙂 Such amazing, amazing tips, Meg! I’ve always wanted to vlog but 1) I don’t have the right equipment yet and 2) I don’t know what I’d vlog about. But all of your info makes me want to start thinking about it and coming up with a game plan. So insightful! I love all of your videos. You’re the only vlogger I ever watch, too. It must be your Italian singing. 😉 So happy you joined the blog tour! Thank you, thank you, thank you!

    • Reply
      Kristy
      February 5, 2015 at 10:21 am

      I take that back. I also watch Channing and Michelle. 😉

    • Reply
      Meg O.
      February 5, 2015 at 9:18 pm

      What camera do you have? Does it have video capabilities? You can definitely try the whole putting a mirror behind the camera on the tripod (a full length mirror you can lean against a wall works awesome) to make sure you can see that you’re in the frame. Or you could just be simple and do it on your phone/ipad!! I think you should give it a try!! Thanks for having me in the blog tour! It’s been so awesome.

      • Reply
        Kristy
        February 11, 2015 at 11:38 pm

        I just realized that I do have the video capability! 🙂 I have the Canon Rebel T3. Why did I not know this until now? Lol.

  • Reply
    Tiffany @ A Touch of Grace
    February 5, 2015 at 11:02 am

    Well this is just amazing! I have never done a vlog for a lot of reasons, but the biggest one being my voice. I think I sound like a man, haha! And I have no idea what I’d vlog about! These are awesome tips and great for someone who is just starting to think about doing some vlogs.
    Thanks for collaborating Meg!

    • Reply
      Meg O.
      February 5, 2015 at 9:17 pm

      Dude I’m sure you don’t sound like a man!! I think you should do it! I sing, start talking like a hillbilly, and pretty much look like a darn fool in my videos and my friends haven’t disowned me yet. LOL! You could always start with some Tag or “Get to Know Me” or accent videos! Those are always super fun!

  • Reply
    Jessica DImas
    February 5, 2015 at 11:15 am

    These tips were SO helpful! I’ve never vlogged (yet) but have always wondered HOW to do it, and you explained everything so well here, going into such great detail. Awesome post and I’m so happy to have gotten the chance to collaborate with you!

    • Reply
      Meg O.
      February 5, 2015 at 9:16 pm

      You should definitely vlog! It brings an even more awesome connection to your readers and many people ONLY watch my videos on my YouTube channel. Weird, right? Anyway, glad to collaborate with you too!! 🙂

  • Reply
    Jessica
    February 5, 2015 at 12:41 pm

    This is so helpful! I started a vlog last year and it became daunting so quickly. I love the mirror tip and I didn’t realize that videos come up more frequently in searches. This is great motivation to power through this tough beginning stage. Thank you!

    • Reply
      Meg O.
      February 5, 2015 at 9:14 pm

      I’m so glad this is helpful for you! Definitely using a mirror helps, and it’s even better if it’s a full length mirror you can lean against a wall behind your tripod. Super easy solution to figure out if you’re in the frame!

  • Reply
    Alycia @ Crazily Normal
    February 5, 2015 at 9:56 pm

    I love this. I don’t know that I could be a vlogger, but you make it seem like a really great idea! You explain everything very well in this post!! Thanks for this amazing collaboration! 🙂

    • Reply
      Meg O.
      February 8, 2015 at 1:24 pm

      Glad that you thought my tips are helpful! I do think every blogger should vlog – it really is an awesome extension of your blog and another way that your readers can connect with you!

  • Reply
    Lauren Watson
    February 6, 2015 at 7:09 am

    Loving this collaboration! Lots of great ideas if/when I ever decide to venture into the vlogosphere. 🙂

    • Reply
      Meg O.
      February 8, 2015 at 1:22 pm

      Thank you!! You should definitely vlog, it’s tons of fun!

  • Reply
    megan
    February 6, 2015 at 9:36 am

    These are such great tips! There’s notbing worse than someone with no personality rambling on camera! Lol! Maybe I’ll have to start a YouTube channel soon…..

    • Reply
      Meg O.
      February 8, 2015 at 1:21 pm

      Thank you so much! You should start a channel! It’s such an amazing addition to have to your blog!

  • Reply
    Alison
    February 6, 2015 at 2:22 pm

    Great tutorial!

    • Reply
      Meg O.
      February 8, 2015 at 1:20 pm

      Thank you so much! I meant to tell you that I have been watching some of your videos and I enjoy them!! 🙂

  • Reply
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  • Reply
    Lindsay @ Trial By Sapphire
    February 7, 2015 at 7:42 pm

    These are great tips, but I’m such a weirdo in vlogs.

    • Reply
      Meg O.
      February 8, 2015 at 1:19 pm

      No you’re not! I loved watching your vlogs!

  • Reply
    Michelle
    February 8, 2015 at 12:26 pm

    I’ve been trying to do my first ever vlog today and I absolutely, 197% over thought it!
    But glad I stumbled across this today, I’ll definitely give it another go…maybe with less fear. Maybe I’ll embrace the fear and make it work for me. I guess we’ll all find out soon enough.
    M x Life Outside London

    • Reply
      Meg O.
      February 8, 2015 at 1:18 pm

      Glad that my tips could help!! Let me know when you post it and I would love to come and watch! 🙂

  • Reply
    Chas @ Haute Mommy Blog
    February 9, 2015 at 4:57 pm

    Timely post Meg! I had one window open googling tips on how to better video myself and another open browsing blogs. Glad I came across this and don’t have to waste any time!

  • Reply
    Hannah
    February 10, 2015 at 2:35 pm

    Squealing with delight here! I JUST made a goal to do more videos on my blog so this came just in time! I love reading about how all the magic happens. Thanks for sharing your behind the scenes tips. Love it!

  • Reply
    Lauryn Hock
    May 24, 2015 at 3:40 pm

    These are amazing tips! Thank you!

    • Reply
      Meg O.
      May 24, 2015 at 6:49 pm

      You are welcome!!! Thank you for your sweet comment 🙂

  • Reply
    April Khaito
    June 13, 2015 at 5:03 pm

    Thank you so much for your great tips! It’s always good to hear from someone who has gone through the process already.

  • Reply
    Krissy @ Pretty Wee Things
    June 26, 2015 at 12:47 pm

    this was such an informative and helpful post! I just started a YouTube channel so I am super grateful to have found your tips . Thank you!! Xx

    • Reply
      Meg O.
      June 28, 2015 at 11:53 pm

      Yay! Glad you found it helpful!

  • Reply
    Guillaume
    June 26, 2015 at 7:15 pm

    Great post! Thank you for putting together this list.
    It takes a lot of time, skills and techniques to master good editing before on can ever upload on YT.
    Also, for the mobile generation, the vlogging format needs to be shorter (<3mn?)

  • Reply
    Cassie
    July 5, 2015 at 9:33 am

    Hi Meg! Thank you so much for this article, it’s brilliant! I have done a couple nail art how to videos and I definitely need these suggestions and more lol. I know I need to be more “me” I get nervous though and I’m not naturally very bubbly. Off to check out your videos now…
    My YouTube channel is figtreestamps if you want to have a look.

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  • Reply
    Darci
    August 16, 2015 at 12:58 am

    such great tips! I recently became a daily vlogger and have used many of these tips and appreciated hearing the new ones! If you get a minute go and check out my vlogs! YouTube: David and Darci

  • Reply
    Candice Carter
    October 13, 2015 at 7:15 am

    Great post I am definitely going to invest in a camera!

    • Reply
      Meg O.
      October 16, 2015 at 10:10 pm

      That is the best place to start!!

  • Reply
    Angie
    November 27, 2015 at 5:24 pm

    Thank you for your tips. This is a new thing that I’m stepping into and want to make the right steps in the begging. I would love it if you would follow In the future. Thanks for the tips again. http://alllwaysangie.com

  • Reply
    Vita Masli
    December 2, 2015 at 1:55 am

    Thank you.. I’m starting vlogging recently after i came to YouTube Creator’s Day. I never thought I have courage to show up on a video, but yes.. after did it, i think i’m going to do it again ahahahaha

  • Reply
    Dawn
    December 19, 2015 at 12:52 pm

    GREAT tips!! One of my goals for 2016 is to get my first YouTube channel up and running. Will definitely be pinning this for reference 🙂

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  • Reply
    Kara
    January 4, 2016 at 3:41 pm

    This post was SO helpful. Thank you so much for sharing your tips (I can’t wait to try them)! XO Kara @ Fit Chick Nextdoor

    • Reply
      Meg O.
      January 6, 2016 at 3:41 pm

      I’m so glad I helped you!!! I would love to see any videos you have put up!

      • Reply
        Kara
        January 7, 2016 at 8:26 am

        Yes! Totally will 🙂

  • Reply
    Lauren T
    April 5, 2016 at 10:55 am

    Will the canon T1i work the same? I am finding those at a very reasonable price!

    • Reply
      Meg O.
      April 5, 2016 at 11:11 am

      I couldn’t remember what the specs were on the T1i, so I looked it up. It does do video, but it doesn’t have a swivel screen, which may make it hard for videos! I would definitely look for a T3i… I bet you could find some good deals!

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  • Reply
    Lala
    May 21, 2016 at 1:54 am

    Yes! Thank you for these tool! Best bolg I’ve seen so far on this topic!!

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  • Reply
    andreamakamba
    July 26, 2016 at 5:18 am

    I love this post! Thank you so much for this, I really like how you included resources and tips for people starting with any old equipment. I’m still stuck on a point and shoot camera, but I’m looking to upgrade to a DSLR, and at the same time, I really want to move my food blogging over to YouTube This post really helped me so thanks for that!

  • Reply
    Chic and Proud
    August 17, 2016 at 9:13 am

    Hi!
    I´m so shy about actually uploading videos to my channel since I am unsure about the video quality.
    I have a good camera but somehow uploading the files to my computer/edeting software just lowers the quality drastically…
    Do you have any idea why that could be? It makes me feel really unconfident.
    I love filming and edeting and am confident about my content but I want it to be as best as possible. (Also, I could never upload a beauty tutorial with bad lighting or video quality, right!?)
    Thankyou!
    Antonia

    http://www.chicandproud.wordpress.com

    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCPZQGvYSGDS7qROcwofIaJw

    • Reply
      Meg O.
      August 17, 2016 at 9:40 pm

      I really wish I knew what to tell you!! I guess it all depends on what you use to edit and how you’re exporting. I hope you get this problem fixed!!

  • Reply
    Nazgul
    February 20, 2017 at 9:40 pm

    This is so helpful! Thank you so much! http://www.creativesis.com

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