Blogging vs Vlogging – Which is Right for You?
Blogging and Vlogging are having a huge success over the internet as millions of people turn to them for advice and entertainment. Both are very effective strategies that brands and individuals use who want to generate traffic and draw attention. Even amateurs have a chance in the playing field of content creation and often enough, their efforts amount up to an amazing success.
Just look at how many people have had amazing success on YouTube. They did what they loved and their audience loved them back. The same goes for an astonishing number of bloggers as well. For a lot of them, the content they create is their primary source of income. Every successful business and individual has done one thing before they leveraged the power of their blogs and vlogs. They decided upon whether writing or video is the best medium of communication for them.
With so many people saying that blogging is dead and video is the future, it isn’t too easy to make a decision. To get things straight, blogging isn’t dead and yes, video is getting more and more popular. Which is why I’ve decided to write this article! To help you know which medium is the right one for you.
We’ll be looking at the factors you should take into account, along with the benefits and downsides of each platform. So, without further ado, let’s get down to it!
Your Talents and Skills
You should first examine what you’re best at or what would you have the most fun producing. Are you talkative and social, or would you rather prefer to write down your thoughts?
To run a good blog, you’ll have to be a good writer and willing to become even better. Grammar mistakes and typos are unacceptable and will make you less credible to your readers. If it’s a pain for you to read, rewrite and correct your posts over and over again, than writing might not be your best bet. But if you have a way with words, like to tell stories and love to read, then give blogging a shot.
Setting up a blog doesn’t require much. You can even do it for free, although it’s best if you have $10 – $15 to invest. That is, if you have at least some level of technical knowledge. With awesome platforms like WordPress, Blogger and Tumblr being available, you can set up a blog pretty easily. But once you wish to customize the templates you have even a bit, you’ll require at least some degree of technical knowledge. If you don’t, tutorials will take you a long way but you’ll have to put in more work than just your writing.
Also, SEO (search engine optimization) is an important skill for bloggers to master. When you’re running a blog, the traffic you get from search engines is invaluable. You’ll have to work consistently to get to the top of search engine results for your keywords.
A Vlog is a better choice if you feel like you have some charisma. Vlogs are made to be more entertaining and exciting, with a lot of twists and turns. They often get more attention and aren’t as educational as blogs. If you’re shy and don’t like showing up on camera, vlogging might be something you want to avoid, even without reading this. If you’re at least comfortable with your voice, you can make tutorial videos, or show off your experiences from behind the camera.
In short, video is for you if you you’re more of a charismatic and talkative type of person who would rather make it short and talk face to face with the audience. If you’re the type who likes to research, write well-informed articles and provide educational material, writing is for you.
Who Your Audience Is
Writing and making videos isn’t just about you. In fact, it’s more about who your creating your content for and filling the gap of need. Videos are the easiest to share and they appeal to a lot of people. Trying out certain products and services and getting them on video can be interesting for a lot of people. Especially if they don’t have the space, tools or the money to do so themselves. Video is also preferred by a lot of people because it’s much easier to consume. It’s easier to watch videos than to read articles. You can also do numerous other things while the video plays, because it doesn’t require your full attention.
Blogs are more educational in nature, so they appeal to people who are looking for more detailed information. With a blog post, you don’t have to oversimplify complex subjects and can also list all the resources and materials you’ve used to write your articles. It’s a much better medium to provide specific information. Because in videos, you might say a website’s name and your viewers might completely misspell it. But you can still include it in your video’s description.
Basically, video is made more for a general audience who often won’t take the time to read. They would rather keep it simple and watch a video on certain topics or to get a taste of certain experiences. Sometimes they watch videos of vloggers going on vacation if they don’t have the time to do it themselves. Video is also better for people to be immersed in your content.
If you’re looking for people who want to educate themselves more thoroughly and want to read specific details on specific subjects, blogging is better.
Costs usually depend on the quality you’re looking to produce. But usually, the camera gear you’ll buy for vlogging is much more expensive then what you’ll pay to have your blog up and running. To run a quality vlog, you’ll need a few microphones and at least a $300 – $500 camera. You can start with that much, but you can also invest into green screen and courses to become better at video editing. It really depends on how elaborate you want your videos to be.
When it comes to blogging, your initial fees are very little. Sometimes, all you’ll need is a computer and access to the web. If you want your blog to be completely in your hands, it will cost you a little money. You’ll have to pay for hosting, a premium template and someone to help you set up your website if you don’t know how to do it yourself. But all of these can be acquired for free as well if you’re resourceful.
It’s harder to monetize and make money back from your Vlog than it is from your Blog. This is because you can’t seamlessly embed links into your content that people can click on out of sheer interest. You can however add them to the video description or use it to become a YouTube partner, but that is rarely as effective if you don’t have millions of views yet. Blogs however are much easier to monetize and to link with affiliate products. It’s also easier to track your readers and have an idea of how many of them are going to make the purchase.
Video Hosting and SEO
One of the advantages of vlogging is that the videos are hosted on a video sharing site like YouTube or Vimeo. That way, you don’t have to pay hosting and your video is already on a site that has millions of unique visitors every month. You don’t need to do much else than give your video a catchy title and make a thumbnail that stands out. The downside of it is that the site has complete control over your videos. They can be taken down or de-monetized at any time if someone thinks that they are offensive. There has been a lot of problem with this in the YouTube community lately.
In the case of a Blog, you’ll have to have at least some knowledge of SEO, so that you get traffic from Google. Search engine optimization is one of the main ways blogs get organic traffic. But you will be constantly digging your head into SEO articles to learn about anything that would improve your ranking. But once you do get to a good spot, you’ll have a consistent stream of traffic coming to your blog’s pages.
As you can see, both of these have their own advantages and flaws. So it depends on your preferences.
Most Important Things to Consider In Blogging
If you like the basic concepts of blogging and writing, you should start doing it right away. But if you’re still busy thinking about which one you should choose, here are a few core factors to consider.
You’ll have to be at least familiar with writing and creating articles. It’s better if you love writing, because the choice is a no brainer then. But if you hate writing about your experiences, writing is definitely not for you. You should consider vlogging or any other medium you can get your hands on.
Your Awareness of The Subject
One of the most important skills of a blogger is awareness of the subject they are talking about. Because nobody will listen to you if you don’t know what you’re talking about. So it’s important to get together the stuff you want to write about. Is it sports and fitness, sports cars, lifestyle, cooking or something completely new? It’s important that you understand the subject to at least some extent.
A niche is the specific type of content a blog or a group of blogs are publishing. You can think about it as a sub category of a larger category. For example it can be weightlifting within the sports category, vegan recipes within the cooking category or maybe yoga within the lifestyle category. Your niche is what defines the majority of topics you tackle on your blog. So it is the first and most important thing to figure out when you’re starting a blog.
Once you have established what topic you’re building your blog around, you’ll eventually want to make money from it. It is probably one of the main reasons you want to start a blog in the first place, so it’s important that you figure this one out. There are an insane amount of monetization options for blogs. Google AdSense isn’t your only option. In fact, it’s one of the things you should avoid.
Affiliate marketing, freelancing, creating your own eBook or trying to get sponsorships are all much better options. Just figure out which one works better for your audience.
The Pros and Cons of Blogging
Blogging is basically an online log. The author writes about their experiences, shares information and opinions, along with providing useful advice to readers. Blogging has become a norm for business owners, professionals and brands. They use it as a way of engaging with their potential clients and customers. So the benefits of having a blog best supports these goals.
It’s easy to set up a blog, even if you don’t have too much technical knowledge to start with. You can use blogging platforms like WordPress, Tumblr, and Blogger among others. With these you just have to watch a simple tutorial and have your site up and running within an hour or so. You can do it without any financial investment, though you’ll definitely have a better blog if you’re willing to invest some.
Blogging doesn’t require any equipment besides a computer and an internet connection. Also, your most important skill is to be able to convey your thoughts and write them down well. This can work especially well for you if the written word is your thing. Once you have your blog up and running, leant a bit of SEO and got a consistent flow of traffic, you can monetize it. Affiliate products or even with your own products, sponsorships or creating your own product is a great way to make money off blogging.
- It’s easy to start
- Writing articles can be pretty fast
- It gives a reason to people to check out your website
- You can have a sense of community
- It is a living archive of your thoughts and life
- You can reach out to millions of people
Running a blog is something that will find its way into your everyday life. Starting a blog is pretty easy but you’ll have to keep working consistently, which is much more difficult if you want to do it right. Making money with it doesn’t come overnight either. It will take at least a few months until you can build your blog up enough to have an income from it. Which also requires you to have good knowledge of SEO and what your audience is looking for. The quest of a blogger is to build a loyal readership.
Even though your blog is a personal archive of your thoughts and experiences, being too honest can be a problem. One reason behind that is because people rarely like to read about other people’s negativity. Another reason is the fact that bitching about a client or someone in your life might get you into trouble. Also, if you’re using it as a part of your business strategy, you shouldn’t do it haphazardly. So it has to be done professionally. Making sure that your grammar and spelling are flawless is an ever present task.
You might come across unexpected technical issues, because running a website isn’t always simple. You might have problems with your hosting or a new plugin you installed. Maybe you’ll face a problem that you have no idea where it came from and it ends up shutting your website down for a short while. So, blogging comes with a lot of learning as well. It’s important to keep your topics fresh and engaging so that your blog will frequently get new visitors. You’ll constantly have to adopt to your audience and learn new things in the process. Which isn’t bad at all if you made a devotion to learning.
- It has to be updated regularly (at least twice a week)
- Requires you to have good knowledge in SEO
- You can’t be too honest
- It has to be professional if you use it for your business
- Might come with unexpected issues
- Requires you to learn constantly
The Most Important Things to Consider in Vlogging
If you’re thinking that vlogging might be your thing, than this part of the post will help you find the answer. It will be much easier to conclude whether vlogging is for you or not.
Having a camera that can record HD video is important. But that’s just the start. A good microphone, a handle and a stand is just as important. Most cameras have pretty bad sound quality, so it’s very important that you get a good mic. You’ll also have to be able to comfortably hold your camera as you walk around or a stand if you’re just standing and talking. Yet, this only applies if you’re looking to produce the highest quality videos right off the bat.
If you only have a simple family camera, than start with that. It’s much more important to do what you love than anything else. You’ll get the gear as you go. If you’re truly passionate about making videos, than you’ll eventually attract a large audience as well.
It isn’t a must have to get started, because your confidence will slowly build up as you’re creating your videos. But your camera confidence is something that could be a deciding factor when you’re trying to figure out whether you should or shouldn’t start vlogging. If you feel like jumping right into vlogging on YouTube, just stay calm and don’t think too much about your voice quality. Just let go and feel good in your own skin.
Good stories are one of the things that gets your audience hooked. You should always think about what story you could tell your viewers. The story must have a clear narrative and storyline. It won’t appeal to viewers otherwise. If you get them confused or frustrated because they can’t follow you, it might just mean them unsubscribing.
Knowing What You’re Willing To share
How much of your life are you willing to share with your audience? You have to have a clear set of rules on what you’re willing to feature in your videos and what you’re not. What belongs there and what doesn’t. It’s also good to figure out where you will film most of your videos and where you won’t.
The Pros and Cons of Vlogging
Vlogging is similar to Blogging in that it involves sharing your thoughts, experiences, information and giving advice. But it’s done in video format, which appeals to more people. It’s also better if you like being on camera. Setting up your vlog is pretty easy if you already have the equipment for it. You don’t have to set up a website, only a YouTube account. This makes publishing your videos easy and efficient.
A vlogger doesn’t have to have great writing skills, it’s more about providing a conversational experience. As long as the topic is engaging and interesting to your viewers, your vlog will get popular. If you’re like me, it will be really fun. I love communication, both in written and in video format. A vlog allows you to provide your audience with a face-to-face experience and convey your thoughts and feelings more clearly than you could by writing.
It’s likely that you’ll have a larger following and faster than you would with writing a blog. YouTube is viral with millions of unique visitors each day. Today, if anyone thinks about internet videos, YouTube is the first thing they associate them with. So you can easily leverage the incredible amounts of traffic the site is getting on a daily basis if you do your thing well.
Video also lets you connect with your audience a lot better. Following a social media page or a blog isn’t nearly as engaging as watching someone on video speaking their mind. Also, on YouTube there is one universal way to follow a channel. By clicking subscribe. This simplicity is one of the reasons why YouTube became so successful.
- It’s easier to start
- Easier to grow your following
- YouTube is viral
- Easier to convey thoughts, feelings and visuals especially
- Video is a more widely accepted among internet users
If you’re considering to start a vlog, know that it needs a lot of equipment. To create high quality videos, you’ll need an advanced camera that records in high definition, a good microphone and video editing software. All this equipment could cost you $500 – $1000 dollars. It’s a much greater investment than starting a blog.
Another downside of vlogging is that once you upload a video, it’s done. You can’t go back to it to edit it while it’s online. You’ll have to take it down, and remake it in order to correct the error. Video editing can also be pretty time-consuming. It will take you 2+ hours to edit and upload your videos.
- Video equipment is costly
- Editing videos is time consuming
- You can’t edit videos while they are online
There’s no doubt that blogging is evergreen on the web and that vlogging has become pretty hot. YouTube is full of amazing vlogs and it could always use more. But you should know that whether you go with vlogging or blogging, it takes time to grow your audience. Nothing happens overnight, so be prepared to put in at least a few months of work without seeing any immediate results.
The choice is up to you now. Both vlogging and blogging are great mediums for communication. The first and most important thing you should figure out is what will be the massage you’re trying to get across and how. If you’re a person who better expresses themselves in written word, blogging might just be the thing for you. If you’re more of a charismatic individual who likes to joke and tell stories face-to-face, than vlogging is a great choice. Either way, I’m curious to see what you choose!