Armed with little more than a YouTube account and some affordable camera gear, virtually anyone can become a successful vlogger. — dpa Video platforms such as YouTube and Vimeo are booming with countless vlogs. So how do you get in on the action? Video blogs - or vlogs - are “a nice thing to publicly share a certain passion or hobby with others and to get in touch with like-minded people, ” says Patrick Fass, founder of a video agency in Berlin. Hobby channels can build up a large audience on YouTube and could potentially even earn you some money. However, the effort involved should not be underestimated. Vlogs required planning, regularity and patience, says PR consultant Pauline Walthart. The range of topics that can be successful is wide. ”That ranges from the professional content creator, who gives insights into their life through diary-like videos, to stars who use vlogs for fan loyalty and self-promotion, ” Walthart says. And of course vlogs can be used for product marketing. The most important question a potential vlogger should ask, according to video marketing expert Beatrice Madach, is: “What exactly do I want to do and who are my videos for?” Your target group has to be clearly defined. “A good vlog is one that is very relevant to a specific group of people, ” Madach says. The videos should be specific, offer added value to the target group, and be published regularly. To begin with, a smartphone camera is sufficient, but Madach recommends a clip-on microphone for good sound quality. A smartphone tripod is also essential. It’s best to shoot in daylight with your face towards a window or else the artificial light of an LED panel. There are some legal pitfalls to be aware of, for example to use royalty-free rather than copyrighted music. You also have to consider the rights of other people who appear in the videos. ”Basically, people who appear in the vlog and are therefore published on YouTube must be asked for permission beforehand, ” Walthart says. Then there’s advertising. “Every vlog for which the vlogger receives something in return must be labelled as advertising, ” Walthart says. The something received doesn’t necessarily have to be money: ”Products made available free of charge also count as advertising.” Making money from vlogs works in at least three ways. Firstly, advertising that accompanies the video. Secondly, affiliate links to products. ”They bring the vlogger a commission when someone buys the product based on the link, ” explains Walthart. Thirdly, product placement for vlogs with large audiences. The vlogger may receive the product free of charge to include in their videos or even be paid for to include it. ”A high reach always attracts companies that want to benefit from it, ” Patrick Fass says. However, no-one should expect to get rich quick from vlogs. “On the contrary, ” Fass says. “Building such a channel takes a lot of time and patience. So you should have a lot of staying power.” – dpa
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