Starting a vlog can be a fantastic way to express yourself, share your passions, connect with a target audience, and build a personal brand. Vlogs are one of the most popular forms of video content for creators as they allow for a more personal and authentic connection with viewers.
This ultimate guide on how to start a vlog will get you started on your journey to becoming a vlogger in no time.
Use our table of contents below to jump to your preferred section!
- Vlogs 101
- 5 steps to start a vlog
- Best vlogging equipment
- Creating a vlog content plan
- Editing your vlogs
- Finding copyright-free music for vlogs
- Tips for making great vlogs
What is a vlog?
A vlog (aka video blog) is a popular form of video content where creators share their daily life, experiences, opinions, or expertise with their audience, often talking directly to the camera.
What’s the difference between vlogging and blogging?
While vlogging and blogging share similarities in content creation, vlogging focuses on video content, while blogging primarily utilizes written content. However, vlogging and blogging can also be totally complementary, combining the power of both written and visual storytelling to captivate audiences.
Can you make money by vlogging?
Absolutely! Vlogging has become a viable source of income for many influencers and content creators. You can generate revenue and turn your passion into a successful career through various monetization strategies such as advertising, brand partnerships, sponsored content, and product promotions.
Most creators start out by promoting affiliate links in their vlog video descriptions before working with brands and taking brand sponsorships, but brand collabs are a great way for creators to drive substantial monetization opportunities for your content and channel.
Once eligible for YouTube’s Partner Program, YouTube vloggers can also monetize their videos through YouTube ad revenue (aka AdSense earnings). You can learn more about the YouTube Partner program and how to apply here.
Top Ideas for Vlogs
Here are some of the most popular creative vlog ideas and themes to spark your inspiration:
- Travel vlog: Take your viewers on a virtual journey as you explore new destinations and share your adventures.
- Beauty and fashion vlog: Share your favorite beauty products, fashion tips, and style hacks with your viewers.
- Food and cooking vlog: Showcase your culinary skills by sharing your favorite recipes, restaurant reviews, and cooking tutorials.
- Health and fitness vlog: Inspire others to lead a healthy lifestyle by documenting your fitness routines, sharing nutritious recipes, and offering wellness advice.
- Lifestyle vlog: Capture your daily life routines, share your personal productivity hacks, and offer lifestyle tips to engage and entertain your viewers.
- How To/Tutorial vlog: Teach your audience how to do something they’ve always wanted to learn, whether it’s painting, playing a musical instrument, or mastering a new hobby.
Essentially, you can make a vlog about pretty much anything so don’t feel limited when thinking of ideas. Take, for example, Nicole Laeno’s vlog about spending 24 hours in her room. She didn’t need to go anywhere or do anything special to create a fun an engaging vlog.
Who are the most popular vlogging creators on YouTube?
There are probably hundreds of thousands of vloggers on YouTube. But if you’re looking to get inspired by the best, we’ve rounded up some of the most popular vlog creators today. These creators all have dedicated subscribers who love tuning in and seeing what’s going on in these creators’ lives. But they all started with an empty channel, so their stories and successes are testament to the kind of impact you can make once you begin your vlogging journey!
Casey Neistat is considered one of the pioneers of the vlogging community. He started posting daily vlogs in 2015 which featured everything from his travels and adventures to product and tech reviews and filmmaking and storytelling content.
Ali Abdaal is one of the top vloggers today sharing content about productivity, study techniques and personal development.
Drew Binsky is one of the most popular travel vloggers, sharing his adventures traveling around the world. His vlogs are like mini documentaries that showcase the people he meets, cultural experiences, and wild adventures.
What’s the best way to start vlogging?
Starting a vlog can be an exciting journey, but beginning with a solid foundation is important. Here are our top 5 steps to help you get started:
- Find your niche: Determine what topics or themes you want to focus on in your vlogs. This will help you attract a specific audience.
- Define your target audience: Understand your ideal viewers and tailor your content to their interests and needs.
- Invest in quality equipment: While you don’t need top-of-the-line gear to start vlogging, having a decent camera, microphone, and lighting setup will greatly enhance the quality of your videos. Explore our top recommendations for vlogging equipment below.
- Choose a platform: Decide where to host and share your vlogs. Popular options include YouTube and social media platforms like Instagram and TikTok. Many creators start out with short-form vlogs on TikTok, Reels, and Shorts, before committing to full YouTube vlogs, but we recommend starting with what is most comfortable for you!
- Create a content plan: Outline the topics or ideas you want to cover in your vlogs (for tips on top vlog ideas click here). This will provide structure and help you stay consistent with your uploads. You’ll definitely want to consider how frequently you’d like to share vlogs on your channel. This can be daily, weekly, or even monthly, but just remember to be consistent and share your upload schedule with your viewers so they know when to tune-in.
Choosing the Right Equipment and Gear for Vlogging
Having the right equipment and gear for vlogging is crucial for producing high-quality content. Whether you’re just starting or looking to upgrade your existing setup, here are some top recommendations to consider:
Top 3 Cameras for Vlogging
Canon PowerShot V10 ($399)
Canon’s Powershot V10 is a great vlogging camera for beginners. It’s small, portable, and captures excellent video and sound quality for on-the-go recording. As a bonus, it comes with built-in filters and a stand.
Sony ZV-1 ($749)
The Sony ZV-1 is made for content creators and vloggers. It comes equipped with a high quality lens and advanced audio capabilities that are designed to capture clear sound no matter your environment.
DJI Osmo Pocket 3 ($519)
This pocket-sized camera is a game-changer for vloggers who prefer ultra-portability. It delivers smooth and stabilized footage with its built-in gimbal and offers various creative shooting modes.
Top 3 Microphones for Vlogging
Rode VideoMic Pro+ ($299)
This shotgun microphone provides excellent audio quality, minimizes background noise and is easy to attach to your camera. It offers built-in rechargeable batteries and adjustable gain control.
Audio-Technica ATR2100x-USB ($79)
With its dual USB/XLR outputs, this microphone is versatile for vlogging and podcasting. It delivers clear audio and has a built-in headphone jack for real-time monitoring.
Logitech for Creators Blue Yeti ($110)
The Blue Yeti is a mic used by many top creators. It features multiple pickup patterns and filters and effects, allowing you to create an immersive sound experience that excites and entertains your audience.
Top 3 Lighting Setups for Vlogging
Ring lights are a staples in every vlogger’s lighting kit. They provide an even spread of light and help reduce shadows, especially across the face. The Lume Cube & Joby ring lights are ones to check out.
LED Light Panels
LED light panels offer adjustable brightness and color temperature for your videos. They are great for various vlogging setups as they provide consistent lighting. Check out the light panels from Rotolight and Lume Cube.
Softbox lights produce soft, diffused lighting that is flattering for vloggers. They are excellent for indoor setups, and their larger size distributes light evenly. Fovitec and RaLeno softboxes are often recommended.
Investing in the right cameras, microphones, and lighting sets gives you the essential tools to create captivating vlogs. Experiment with different equipment to find what works best for your style and niche. Remember, quality gear can significantly enhance the overall production value of your vlogs and attract a larger audience.
Plan and Create Engaging Content for your Vlog
Creating engaging content is essential for a successful vlog. It helps attract and retain viewers and establishes your unique voice and style in the vlogging community.
Here are some effective strategies to plan and create engaging content for your vlog:
Find unique content ideas for vlogging
- Tips for brainstorming exciting and original video concepts: Set aside dedicated time to brainstorm ideas and jot them down as they come to you. Consider your passions, hobbies, and expertise to create content that reflects your interests and resonates with your target audience.
- Analyze successful vlogging examples and case studies: Study successful vloggers in your niche to understand their content strategies and identify patterns that resonate with their viewers. This will help you gain insights into what works and inspire you to develop unique ideas.
👉 Still not sure what to vlog about? See our list of the most popular vlog ideas here.
Create a content schedule and plan ahead
Consistency is key in vlogging. Creating a content schedule allows you to plan and organize your content ahead of time, ensuring regular updates for your viewers. Determine the frequency of your uploads and allocate specific topics or themes to each upload. This way, you can stay consistent and avoid the stress of last-minute content creation.
Develop a consistent branding strategy for your vlog
To stand out in the vlogging world, developing a consistent branding strategy is essential. Consider your vlog’s name, logo, color scheme, and overall visual style. Your branding should align with your content and convey a cohesive message to your viewers, helping you establish a memorable and recognizable presence.
Editing your Vlogs
To create professional-looking vlogs, video editing, and enhancements play a crucial role. You can take your vlogs to the next level with the right editing software and creative ideas.
Choose your Vlog Editing Software
When editing your vlogs, the choice of software depends on the social platform you’re using. Different platforms have various editing tools specifically designed to enhance the video content for that platform.
Comparison of Popular Video Editing Tools
A user-friendly and beginner-friendly editing tool for creators on Macs, offering a range of basic editing features.
Adobe Premiere Pro & Rush
A professional-grade editing software that provides advanced features and capabilities for more experienced vloggers.
A versatile editing app for creators (especially those making videos for TikTok & Shorts) with many editing tools and effects.
Adding Music to Vlogs
Music is a powerful element that can greatly enhance the mood and impact of your vlogs. However, it’s important to use copyright-free music to avoid legal issues.
With Thematic, you can find a wide variety of copyright-free music and sound effects specifically curated for vloggers.
Thematic’s vast audio library and song filtering options allow you to explore various genres, moods, and tones so that you can find the best song to complement your vlog in minutes. The best part is that Thematic is completely free to use ✌️
To help you get started, we’ve created a best music for Vlogs playlist which you can listen to here:
Find a Visual Brand and Enhance Your Video Production
Having a consistent visual brand can greatly enhance your video production. Consider creating a unique logo, choosing a consistent color palette, and designing custom graphics to include in your vlogs. This helps to establish your brand identity and make your vlogs instantly recognizable.
Remember, your visual brand should align with your vlogs’ overall theme and message. Take the time to brainstorm and experiment with different visual elements to find what works best for your content.
Tips for making great Vlogs
When it comes to vlogging, success is not solely determined by the number of subscribers or views you have. It’s about engaging with your audience and creating content that resonates with them. Here are some tips and tricks that can help you enhance your vlogging experience:
✅ Look at the camera as if you were having a one-to-one conversation. This creates a sense of intimacy and connection with your viewers, making them feel like they are a part of your vlog.
✅ Even if you want to reach a large audience, create your vlogs thinking of a single viewer to create a personal connection. Address your viewers directly, using inclusive language and relatable storytelling to make them feel engaged and appreciated.
✅ Maintain authenticity and stay true to yourself. One of the key aspects of a successful vlogging experience is maintaining authenticity. Your viewers want to connect with the real you, so staying true to yourself is important. Be genuine and share your thoughts, experiences, and opinions honestly. Remember, being relatable is what sets you apart from the rest.
✅ Overcome challenges and setbacks in your vlogging journey. The vlogging journey is not always smooth sailing. Challenges and setbacks will come along the way, but don’t let them discourage you. Embrace these challenges as opportunities to learn and grow. Keep pushing forward, stay dedicated, and believe in your abilities. Remember, every successful vlogger has faced similar obstacles at some point.
✅ Create a personal brand and image as a vlogger. Building a personal brand is essential in the vlogging world. It helps you stand out from the crowd and establishes your unique identity. Consider your niche, target audience, and the image you want to portray. Develop your style and personality that resonates with your viewers. Be consistent with your branding across your videos, thumbnails, and social media profiles.
By implementing these strategies and incorporating your unique perspective, you can create engaging content that resonates with your viewers, establishes your vlogging brand, and sets you apart from others in the vlogging community.
We hope you enjoyed our beginner’s guide to vlogging and how to start a vlog. If you’re looking for more creator tools and resources, visit Thematic’s Creator Toolkit for additional resources on creating content – including starting a YouTube channel, thumbnail and channel art templates, best practices, and of course, great royalty free songs to use in your videos for free with Thematic.