As a blogger, I am constantly hearing things that I “have” to do in order to be successful.
It can be super overwhelming at times! I know that I often hear all these lists of ideas, and it just about makes me want to quit.
But when that happens, I just have to take a step back and find a way to make things work in my own way.
Thus far, we’ve been pretty successful paving our own path in the blogging world.
I’m sure we’ve done things that would make other professional bloggers cringe, but really – that’s the beauty of being your own boss.
You can do what you want.
One of those things has been video. I hear it constantly – video is the future of the Internet and blogging.
And in some ways, I agree. Video is becoming increasingly popular, and it is a good idea to implement it into your site.
But do I think it’s something we all need to devote all of our time to perfecting?
No. No, I don’t. I’m sure I’ll get some flack for that, but as someone who got super overwhelmed trying to get really into video, I found that it hurt me more than anything.
With that said, I do think that implementing some kind of video into your strategy is wise, and this post is for anyone who might be feeling a little overwhelmed about where to start.
Maybe you’ll find that video is really your thing and your readers respond to it super well – and if so, that’s awesome.
However, you may find that it’s just one piece of the puzzle. For me, I personally do video with the intention of getting more ad revenue (because it does help there) and supporting some of my more popular content. Some people do enjoy video more, so I like offering multiple ways for people to consume the content.
Thank you to Movavi for partnering with us on this post.
Just Get it Done – Stop Overthinking
This is my philosophy with most things in blogging – just get it done. While you are busy trying to perfect something and not launch it…someone else is getting the audience and ad revenue for just launching it.
If you go to my YouTube channel, you will see some great videos…and some not so great videos. However, some of my most popular videos I created just by propping up my iPhone and pressing go.
There’s always time to improve – and I do recommend investing in some better equipment when you can (more on that in a bit), but sometimes you just have to get started! So don’t let the fear of not having a perfect video hold you back.
Know Your End Goal
Why are you doing video? This is really important!
Last year, I started doing more video, and I started working with someone to edit them. I thought that maybe I would try and build a YouTube channel and be successful there.
However, I quickly discovered that wasn’t what I wanted to do at this point. It was too overwhelming for me – especially when I found out I was pregnant and was too sick to do anything.
Instead of just putting up the types of videos I had been previously producing, I just stopped doing them altogether, and that hurt me.
I realized that my platform is our website. Everything I do needs to support growing this website – and at this point in time, trying to create amazing videos for YouTube isn’t going to do that.
However, creating quick videos that support my blog posts DOES help my blog – and when I consider doing a video, I ask myself if it will help the accompanying blog post flourish.
So, again, ask yourself – why are you doing video? That will determine how much time and effort you put into it:
Here are some goals to consider:
- Increase ad revenue (this is more about just having video on your site – the quality doesn’t necessarily have to be as high)
- Create a YouTube channel (if this is what you want, you will want to invest more in creating high-quality videos regularly)
- Sponsored opportunities (video can pay really well – this often requires higher quality videos. However, sometimes brands just like the idea of you being able to create video)
- Social media (video is becoming more and more popular on social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram – the quality can vary!)
What kind of Video?
There are TONS of different kinds of videos that you can implement on your website.
Don’t feel like you have to create an hour long video that’s just of you talking or showing something.
Some people do awesome with talking on camera – and others don’t. Again, it comes back to your end goal.
Here are some different types of videos you can consider doing. If you are wanting to gain a video audience, you will want to be consistent with styling.
- Overhead – this can be long or short form, but they are typically done over a project or recipe showing how to do something step by step. I’ve also done this with reviews and unboxings (such as this breast pump review and this unboxing of a subscription box).
- Tasty-Style – this is a type of video that is about a minute or less and shows how to make a recipe and/or craft quickly.
- Talking/Face on
- Photo Slideshow – one of the easiest things to do – especially for recipe or craft tutorials. Just create a montage with photos and include brief instructions.
- Turn blog post into video – I use a program online that takes my blog post text and turns it into a video
- Live Videos – Whenever I do this, I will download the video, edit it a bit, and then upload it
- Popular Post Video – at the very least, everyone should do this! I created a video that just briefly highlights some of our popular content and how to find it. I have this playing sitewide on posts that don’t have videos and just having it there has increased my ad revenue.
This can mean different things.
If you are trying to build a video-centric audience, you need to post regular videos – on whatever platform you are trying to build.
My friend, Ashlee, says to really be taken seriously on YouTube, you need to post three times a week during the building stage.
If you are primarily just creating videos for your website (ie, ad revenue), consistency in how often you post may not be as important.
It’s good to be consistent in your style – the covers, intro music, etc. This can be pretty easy to do with the right editing software.
I personally make covers for my videos in Canva or PicMonkey, which is really easy.
Invest in Some Good Equipment
Now, don’t let this be the thing that holds you back from creating video.
Start with what you have – even if it’s just your phone and a little tripod (I do recommend some kind of tripod. Shaky videos are not fun! And you can get a phone tripod for free).
Phones can produce a surprisingly good quality video if you use it correctly. Honestly, I use my phone most of the time!
As time goes on, you can invest in microphones, lighting, better tripods, etc. to make the video quality just a little better.
I think the most important thing can be good quality audio! On some of my older videos, that’s the biggest complaint I get.
Find an Editing Software You are Comfortable With
If you are creating video, you will need somewhere to edit it.
There are a lot of different editing software programs out there – and everyone has their opinion on them.
I recommend starting with a free or inexpensive one. For most of us who aren’t doing a lot of editing, these will be just fine.
One program I recently learned about is Movavi Video Editor Plus. This is an easy-to-use video editing program that is available on both Mac and PC computers that is packed full of features.
Here are a few of the features that I found useful:
- Easy-to-use interface – it’s very easy to navigate the Movavi software.
- Montage Wizard – as I mentioned above, slideshows can be a great way to incorporate video into your website. Their montage wizard is perfect for that.
- Audio recording – you can easily create voiceovers or other audio for your video
- Built-in media – it has a lot of different sounds and audio effects that you can use for your videos
- Lots of great effects for videos that bloggers would find helpful are available in their effects store.
There is a free trial version that you can try out if you are interested in. It costs between $39.99 and $79.95 for a lifetime license depending on what features you want.
Find Free or Cheap Resources
You can always find someone trying to sell a course or eBook about how to do some kind of blogging topic…including video. However, there are tons of free resources online to help you get started.
A quick Google search or asking in a Facebook group for people’s favorite tips, tricks, and resources that aren’t expensive is a great place to start.
I really like this book that my friend Jessica wrote. She’s been extremely successful with her videos, and she’s done it very inexpensively and with little equipment – How to Create Easy Recipe Videos.
It’s specifically for creating recipe videos, but I think anyone can apply it to whatever type of video they are doing.
Where to host videos
So, where should you host your videos?
Even if you don’t care much about building up a YouTube channel, I do think it can be helpful to upload your videos there.
Video from YouTube often shows up in search engine results, so it’s definitely worth loading up your videos there.
If you work with an ad company like MediaVine or AdThrive, they have a video uploader that you can use. I definitely recommend uploading your videos here so you can maximize your ad revenue as much as possible.
I wouldn’t recommend uploading them directly to your site. I would suggest just uploading them to YouTube or your Ad provider (or both!) and then putting the embed link on your site.
Toughen Your Skin
Witih blogging in general, you have to toughen your skin. It’s just how it goes – there are a lot of rude and inconsiderate people on the Internet who will criticize your every move.
I find this to be about 100 times worse with video. People feel the need to comment on EVERYTHING, and it can be really discouraging.
If you are going to be putting videos out there for the world to see, just be aware that you will likely get some rude comments and trolls. All engagement is good engagement, right?
Setup a Video Area
This isn’t always possible – but if you have space in your home to setup a video area that you don’t constantly have to take up and down…do it.
One of the most annoying parts about creating video for me is getting everything set up – so I have a designated area in my basement where everything just stays up.