Being an at-home or professional YouTube creator for a video production company isn’t an easy job. Chances are, you do everything yourself. You write the script, set up the props, haul in the lights, direct, shoot the actual thing, do retakes, edit, then post.
But if you’ve been cranking out the videos but it just doesn’t seem to go anywhere then maybe you should do something to improve the quality of your videos instead. There are thousands of video creators on YouTube that get so frustrated with their channel growth because they’re just not seeing it happen. One reason is that the quality of their videos simply look too amateur.
While you don’t need to have the most expensive gear to create professional-quality videos, you need to learn a few techniques professionals do. Here are several tips you might want to keep in mind.
1. Follow the Light
Yes, you need to think about where your light is coming. Go to where there is light in your room or home and shoot there. One thing that makes amateur videos look amateur is because it’s often dark or grim. No one can see the presenter’s face and even though the topic might be great, the viewers get turned off because the video is too dark.
Adding plenty of light can make your footage instantly look professional. Spend some time adding lighting to your room or where you normally shoot. If you can afford professional quality lighting, go for it. If not, then find a way to get light in.
You can even shoot outdoors if you like and use the sun to your advantage. You can get great lighting during golden hours in the morning or in the early evening. The shadows are softer during this time and when you hit sunset, there’s that warmish golden glow. If you need to remove shadows in any area, use a reflector or a simple white sheet to do it.
2. Have Stable Footage
As much as possible, you want a tripod or some place where you can set the camera steady. If you don’t have a tripod, you can always improvise – from book stacks to hanging your camera from a taut, sturdy string – you can easily come up with creative ways to stabilize your camera.
If your scene involves moving around, practice steadying your footage with the way you move or walk with the camera in your hands. You can find helpful tips on how to do this online. There’s also the option of a gimbal if you hate doing it handheld.
Then, there’s also the possibility of stabilizing your footage during post production. While this can be hit or miss depending on the quality of your video, if it works, it can make your work extra professional and the shake less noticeable.
3. Use an External Microphone
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again, make sure your audio is loud and clear. Your footage might already look professional but if your audio is bad, it will still bring down your video.
Have an external microphone so your audience can hear what you’re saying. If you don’t have an external microphone, record a voiceover using your headphones. And make sure to be as close to the microphone and as clear when you’re speaking. If you’re adding other sounds on there, make sure the volumes are regulated. Not too loud or too low. A lot of this you can do during the editing phase so just make sure to pay attention to this.
Because these things seem so basic, it’s easy to overlook how much they can transform your standard YouTube video into a professional-looking one. Whether you’re a simple home creator or someone working for a professional video recording company in states like New York or LA, these “basics” will be a great help to boosting your work.