A few days ago I got my first dose of honest feedback on my vlogging series thus far and I have one thing to say about it:
At first I was a little on the defensive about the whole thing, thinking it was another hater who gave pointless advice that I couldn’t act on. But after reading the comment a few times over, there was a lot of truth to his words.
Even though I’m not about to hunt for a job, I can’t deny that my vlogging sucks at the moment. I’ve even brought it up a few times in the vlog that I want to do better.
But even as I said that, I haven’t taken any serious action on it. I kept to the same patterns repeatedly for weeks.
So I’m happy that someone actually slapped some sense into me. Because it got me thinking more about my channel. But also sharing more of my thoughts in a string of tweets.
Of course I am still open to other comments, but I can’t deny that my vlogging has been slowly going downhill and I need to make some changes.
It’s for this reason I took yesterday to think about what sort of things I can be improving. Furthermore what I am improving as well can also be used for your own vlog channel should you consider making one too.
Show And Tell
This is something that I’ve learned before, though it never hurts to have a refresher. One of the big aspects of vlogging starting out is a lot of people show and then tell. Or tell and then show.
I’m a bit guilty of that already in my vlog, but it’s still something to avoid as much as you can.
Tell and show is simply what it says on the box. You’re telling your audience what you are doing and then you are showing it off in the next clip.
I can understand the reason people do this, they want to be in the shots and have a presence in the vlog. After all, it’s YOUR vlog. It should be on you. But when you take vlogging seriously, you’ll start to realize it’s not all about you.
You don’t need to be talking constantly to your audience.
The same is true with the fact you don’t need to be in every single shot.
And you definitely don’t need to tell them what you’re going to do and then do it. You only need to show the finished product. The actual action.
“But what if the vlog is shorter because I’m not talking so much?”
Who cares? It’s a shorter video then.
A picture can be stronger when it’s a rarity but also if there is no explication behind it.
And if your videos get dangerously short, then you might consider bundling days together. That’s something that I’m seriously thinking about.
This is another massive roadblock and it can be a pain in the ass. I know this because looking through my editing I have to say I’m so fucking awkward. It’s gotten a tad better and I have a compelling reason as a motivator.
My life is boring.
I’ve said that at the very beginning of this series that my life isn’t all that entertaining.
But that’s a reason to make it interesting.
It’s a reason to get out and do other things.
The issue has been that I’ve been relying on these public excursions to do filler clips.
I know this because there’s less and less of me talking, and more showing. Sure that can fly for some people, but not my vlog series. When it’s called “Self Framing” you’d think there’d be a bit more talking about ways to improve yourself and less of what’s happening outside.
In other words I want to be showing more of my transformation from being this nervous awkward wreck, to someone who doesn’t care he’s talking to a camera in public. Moreover speaking with overflowing confidence.
There are plenty of ways to get over those hurdles, but it’s instrumental as a vlogger to be going out in public and record.
In my case where my branding is on improving yourself, and the fact my life isn’t all that interesting, I do need to rely on this avenue further. I can’t rely on taking city shots and filling it with various clips.
It’s boring and not interesting as that commenter put it.
Being Personable With Recording Practices
One tidbit of advice vloggers will push is for you to be yourself and to be personable. You want to connect with other people.
Though there is some shred of truth to that, I still think it’s blanket and empty advice. Yes we should be our authentic self but that can be challenging for a lot of us.
Many people rely on approval of others. So their authentic self is relying on others to see them in a positive light. This in turn can lead them down a path where they lose themselves to please others.
Instead, what I’d like to propose is being personable with recording practices. By all means strive to be yourself and use vlogging as an opportunity to point out flaws and make improvements. Much like I’m doing with my writing.
But I’m suggesting to go beyond that.
Take the time to record various things in your life. Don’t do what I did and fill it with random pointless clips. Open yourself up a little bit and let people understand you and your actions. Have a camera by your side ready to record a few moments in your life.
I’m not saying have it there constantly but take liberties to show things off. This has been something I’ve been lacking. Showing off landscapes as opposed to things that I’m actually doing in my day.
Have Some Kick Ass Music
I don’t think this is as big of an issue for me. That or at least people haven’t been telling me that my music selection sucks yet. But either way you want to have some music playing in the background.
I’ve been relying on it more and more thanks in part to my videos being filled with filler clips, however even during talking segments a bit of music is always good.
For vlogs in particular Epidemic Sounds has some decent collection, but I find Bass Rebels a highly regarded source for vlogging tunes too. They are also free as long as you are willing to share the music on social media first.
Getting Back Into Vlogging
I’m still taking a bit of a break from vlogging at the moment, but that doesn’t mean that I’m gone. Vlogging will teach you lessons you otherwise wouldn’t have learned so it’s worth diving into.
I am a writer, but I also want to be cataloguing my journey so I will surely be coming back smarter and wiser.
To your growth!
Eric S Burdon