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Tips to Become a Successful YouTube Vlogger

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Want to start a vlog but not sure where to start? Here is some advice and tips backed by some of South Africa’s top people in the YouTube Vlogger game! 

Starting and hosting your own YouTube channel may seem like a dream come true. I mean… It can’t be THAT difficult right? You just need a camera, a sense of humour and a computer. Sorted.

Hah. If only that were true. Becoming a successful Youtube Vlogger requires a lot of work. I’ve recently embarked on a journey of starting my own YouTube vlogging channel. When I first started my new endeavour, I thought it would be up in a month. Maximum.

It is now 3 months later and I’m only just starting to think about starting to film. It requires strategic planning sessions, brainstorming to get your niché, research on the right equipment, lighting and content planning. I’m sure there are people who just started one day and became hugely successful, but that’s rare and it’s best to start your project off right.

Taking the Right Steps

While I could do vast amounts of research, it wouldn’t be truly useful without the input of actual, successful YouTube vloggers. Which is why I got in touch with the likes of Mark Fitzgibbon, Pap Culture, Lisa from Lipstick Lifestyle and Suzelle DIY – to give you the best and most comprehensive tips to make your vlog a raving success!

Believe in Yourself

If there is one thing that can definitely make or break your vlog is doubt. Doubt in yourself, your dream, your plan, your ideas. It is vital that you believe in yourself, even if no one else does.

Patience: YouTube and social media in general tends to be a lot about the numbers (how many views, likes, shares you receive etc.) Don’t let your video with 10 views demotivate you…we were all there at some point but you push through and work hard to make sure your next video is better than your last.

Dedication: You are your own competition. When you know what you want to achieve, all external factors don’t matter but what you need to get done. So always be true to yourself and your process but never be afraid to ask for help.” – Pap Culture

Create a Kick-Ass Name

When people are first introduced to your channel they will see your name before your video. Your name represents you and can even tell a story. You need to create a name that will stand out and that people will remember. You can’t create a name that isn’t relevant to your channel. It needs to tell people more or less what it’s about and it can’t be too difficult to pronounce or remember.

Youtube Vlogger Marketing

This is where the belief in yourself and your project will come in handy. You need to promote your YouTube vlogging channel on all social media platforms to get out there. You can do this by paying to have your posts boosted and by asking your friends and family to share your posts. You need to stay active on social media and be receptive to comments and communication.

Name Your Vlogs Appropriately

One major thing all websites, info portals and YouTubers agree on is to not copy a popular YouTube video’s name just to get more hits. It’s unethical and just not cool. Also don’t name it something irrelevant just because you think people will be more likely to click on your video. Be true to yourself and your dream. No one starts off with a thousand clicks for their first video.

Use a Good Camera

Unfocussed and blurry videos are a pain to watch. Especially if you want to post your vlogs regularly. It is definitely worth investing in a good camera and sound equipment (a detachable microphone works really well). You can use natural lighting from windows to further improve the quality of your footage.

Be an Original YouTube Vlogger

There are so many popular channels out there, with some of them being very similar to each other. You want to be an original YouTube Vlogger who stands out from the crowd. Try not to copy someone else’s idea. If you have an idea that is extremely similar to someone else’s – add your own spin and personality to it to make it different and to grab people’s attention.

“You must be genuine. Pretending to be something you’re not is easily picked up by the viewer.” 

– Mark Fitzgibbon

“Have a strong vision and most of all, be as creative as you can.”

– Suzelle DIY

Be Positive and Beneficial

Don’t let your vlogs leave people feeling sad and negative. And please DO NOT rip someone elses channel off. Be positive about all things. No one likes a Debbie Downer. Let your vlog add something to the viewers knowledge or life –they won’t watch something that has no point.

“Lastly, the content you post online must be beneficial. This means you must always consider what the viewer will get out of watching your video. Is it funny? Is it educational? Or is it interesting to a specific group of people?” 

– Mark Fitzgibbon

Be Consistent

Be sure to keep your content new and exciting while always giving your viewers what they expect from you.

“I would say that to become successful in the world of vlogging, you must firstly be consistent. Publishing new fresh content is a top priority, your audience are always itching for new videos.” 

– Mark Fitzgibbon

“Consistency: the world of YouTube has so much to offer and so finding your voice and a gap to fill and shine, takes time, research and hard work. That’s why it’s important to shoot and upload as much as possible (practice makes perfect right).” 

– Pap Culture

“Best advice I’d give when it comes to youtube, is to always be consistent, so set yourself a schedule and stick to it. Followers want to know when they can tune in and see a new video and when they can look forward to new content – kinda like looking forward to watching your favourite TV show every week.” 

–Lisa, Lipstick Lifestyle

“Be consistent and post videos as often as possible.” 

– Suzelle DIY


Links are EXTREMELY important on your YouTube video and on your social media. Add links into your video when uploading it to YouTube. Link it to your Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or even your website if you have one. At the end of each video it’s important to thank all of your viewers and to encourage them to subscribe to your channel (again – have a link in your video when you say this.)

“Collaboration: the success of being a great YouTuber is being willing to work with others because that exposes you to other ways of thinking and that can only mean good things…growth. It’s also a great way to grow your channel because you tap into each others audiences.” 

– Pap Culture

Being a YouTube Vlogger:  Just Have Fun

 What is the point of investing your time, money and imagination into something if you won’t enjoy it? Have fun with the different processes involved in creating your vlog. If you have fun, your viewers will see it and will most likely enjoy themselves too.

“Most importantly, you must enjoy the process of making and sharing videos. One should not make videos looking for success, success will find those who are passionate and hardworking.”

– Mark Fitzgibbon

“Fun and interesting content will always attract views and another tip would be to create videos that showcase your interests and yourself as a blogger/youtuber.”

– Lisa, Lipstick Lifestyle

“Passion: take your time to discover what you love, it makes it easier to create (even through the hard times).”

– Pap Culture

Watch this video to see how to upload YouTube videos with links and all of the other important bits and bobs:

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(Subscribe to Derral Eves channel for more awesome tips!) 

As you can see, starting a YouTube channel isn’t as simple as deciding to start one. You need to put thought into it and plan your episodes and content. Don’t let this discourage you. If you really want this and believe in yourself then the hard work will be well worth it!

Don’t forget Pap Culture’s top five pointers mentioned throughout this article:


City Varsity Online 

Sometimes we all need a bit of a kickstart to get our projects going. With City Varsity Online you can get the skills you need to start filming good quality videos and to give you the confidence boost you probably need to get this vlogging project going.

Take a look at their Digital Cinematography short course and their Documentary Production short course to find the one which best suits you and your vlogging needs!

Check out more information about careers here!

EduConnect 2Cents

Having side projects is an amazing way to keep yourself busy. It also helps you create an online profile for instances where you want to get involved in the film and media industry. It also gives you the opportunity to develop video editing, marketing and communication skills.

Want to give yourself a kickstart? Fill out this form and City Varsity Online will contact you ASAP with more information!


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