YouTube gives you the golden opportunity to build a career out of something you love. There are several examples of You Tubers who started out small but due to their immense talent and hard work are doing really well for themselves. Creating a channel and making it successful would require a lot of hard work and perseverance your part. Making a career out of YouTube is not about coming up with a single viral video and getting shot up to fame; it requires careful content development, distribution and promotion to be sustainable. Here are a few avenues to work upon to get started with a career as a youtuber.
Content is the heart and soul of any YouTube video. Your video cannot get by on presentation alone, and there needs to be strong content backing it up. It’s important that you spend proper time conceptualizing your ideas, writing content/script, and editing it to polish and perfect it. Make sure it is catchy, relevant, precise, and to-the-point. Before even creating your YouTube channel, you’ve probably already decided on the kind of video content that you want to show. The best way to increase your views and gain followers is still to keep your content interesting and engaging; the more people can relate to it, the more they’ll want to click on it and watch until the end. It also helps to stick to your theme, if you have one. For example, many successful YouTubers have dedicated channels for travel, tutorials, or their daily lives. Viewers like living vicariously through the people they watch, so let them know what they can expect and deliver interesting material that they can enjoy.
This is a crucial step as it will help you choose the type of content you’ll create and will reflect the message you want to send out to the masses. It can be anything ranging from beauty and fashion to comedy, gaming, or technology. Here are a few of the most common categories/genres of content on YouTube channels:
Using your smartphone is certainly an acceptable way to record videos, but if you want viewers to enjoy your content, it really helps to invest in the right equipment. Most YouTubers use DSLRs or mirrorless cameras, along with other essential accessories for videography such as tripods, lenses, and studio lighting. For those who normally vlog on-the-go, a mirrorless or action camera, and a good monopod or handheld gimbal stabilizer are typical gear staples.
Invest in a good microphone that you can mount on your camera. At the same time, mind your recording conditions and make it a habit to check if your audio is clear enough for your viewers to understand. For best results, use a shotgun microphone that’s designed to pick up sound mostly from the front so noise from the sides and behind the mic can be canceled out. Some vloggers even go as far as to invest in multiple microphones for different recording situations—you may require a lavalier mic for shooting fitness videos or any other type of video that requires you to be far away from the camera, or a good condenser mic that will allow you to do clear voice-overs.
Good editing and filming can go a long way in increasing the virality of videos. They are the two most crucial elements that determine the final quality of your videos, and thus cannot be ignored. If you’re new to video editing, you’d do much better with simple programs like Windows Movie Maker or Apple iMovie. These are a lot more user-friendly and are easily downloadable (for free) if you don’t already have them on your computer.
Make it a point that you use the right lighting settings and filming techniques while filming your videos. Knowledge of the basics of photography and filming (camera angles, lighting, aperture, shutter speed, framing, etc.) will really help, and thus you should spend time learning these. You can even take up some short-term courses in photography and film-making.
Over time, you’ll slowly gain followers and get more comments from fans on your videos, and eventually, you’ll get messages on your personal social media accounts—you may even get some fan mail, should you decide to share your P.O. Box. As much as possible, make time to connect with your viewers. Remember that your social media accounts are an extension of your YouTube channel, so try to share tidbits of your life on popular social platforms like Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat. YouTubers often organize ‘Meet and Greet’ sessions regularly so that their fans get a chance to meet and know them better personally. It is important to keep on thinking of such ways to increase your fan base and build a supportive community of followers. Being a YouTuber/career as a YouTuber, of course, doesn’t require you to have any minimum qualifications as such, a laptop, editing software, camera, and a steady Internet connection are the only things needed to get started.
However, a degree in mass communication, media, or journalism can definitely be a value-addition because they will equip you with adequate knowledge of editing software, filming techniques, camera handling, advertising, and PR.