To Vlog or Not to Vlog

This seems to be a question circulating writing groups. A while back, author Jennifer Wilkove wrote a post advocating video-blogging. You can read it here. Adding a face, and voice, to a name can be a great way to build reader trust and create a sense of community. If done well. If done poorly, or overdone, I believe vlogging can actually be counter-productive.

As with anything, it comes down to quality. To create quality vlogs, you need to know your motivation and your audience, and keep both in mind when you create your video.

Here’s an example of a video I found hilarious:

Etta Mae Story on Characterization from Lynne Gentry on Vimeo.

I was going to post some bad vlogs, but sadly, I’m too nice and didn’t want to discourage a new vlogger.

But here’s some tips:

Always present your best self. Don’t vlog in your scuvvies, in your bedroom, with your bed and an opened closet in the back ground. That’s just creepy.

Keep it short and sweet–one concise minute is much better than a two-hour, three phrase-repeat.

Take the time to edit.

Try to keep your head from bobbing, and use pauses rather than “ums.”

Evaluate your time and aim for optimal effectiveness. I’ve done three vlog posts, only one of which made it live. Each vlog took twice as long to create as a normal blog post does, and the one that went life–I used it to launch a Clash of the Titles competition–didn’t receive nearly enough views to justify the effort. That doesn’t mean I’ll never vlog again, but I’ll likely use written posts more frequently as, for me, they have a higher return.

What about you? Have you tried video-blogging? And if so, has it been succesful for you? If it has, why do you think that is? If not, what do you think could increase your vlogging effectiveness?

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About Jennifer Slattery

Novelist and speaker Jennifer Slattery, also writing as Jen Pheobus, uses humor, grace, and truth to inspire God's children to live abundant, Christ-centered lives. She does content editing for Firefly, a southern fiction imprint with Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas, and is a regular contributor to Crosswalk.com; Internet Cafe Devotions; Faith, Friends and Chocolate; and manages the social media for Takin’ it to the Streets, a ministry that serves Omaha’s working poor and homeless. She’s placed in numerous writing contests and her work has appeared in numerous compilations, magazines, and e-zines.

Posted on September 21, 2011, in Blogging, Platform Building and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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