If you have ever thought about making a video to upload to YouTube or one of the other online video sharing sites, there is no better time to do it than now. Videos are fast becoming the most popular form of entertainment and information for many people. Most people would rather watch an informative video than read a long article on the same topic. As far as entertainment value, you can’t beat online videos.
So how do you get started? Making a video online may seem like a complicated endeavor at first, but don’t worry, it is much simpler than it seems. You don’t have to be a “techie” to create great videos if you use the proper tools and techniques.
First of all, you need to decide what type of video you want to create. A few of your options are:
1. Instructional — a tutorial or demonstration on how to perform a certain task or project.
Example: How to use PhotoShop to get the red-eye out of your images
2. Informative — similar to an article where you are presenting information about a topic.
Example: The best places to stay in Estes Park Colorado
3. Entertaining — using humor and creativity with the purpose of entertaining your audience. (Note: This is the type of video that has a biggest potential of going viral on the internet)
Example: A spontaneous capture of your poodle using the toilet.
Once, you have decide what type of video you want to create, then you need to determine how you will record it. If you will be demonstrating something on your computer screen then you will need a screen capture software similar to Camtasia. You can also use a free screen grab program and create a slide show of images with Windows Movie Maker or any other free video-editing program.
If you want to create a travel review or capture spur-of-the-moment action then you will need an actual camera of some kind. You can use a video enabled cell phone, a simple flip camcorder or a full-blown video camera. The smaller cameras produce surprising quality and are convenient to carry around with you. They are quite inexpensive too. The downfall is that they don’t often produce high quality audio. You can use a microphone to help solve this problem.
On the other hand, the more expensive video cameras usually produce much better quality and sound and are recommend for a more professional finished product. The type of camera you choose will depend on the purpose of your video (fun or business) and what you may already have on hand. You will want your final footage to be as high quality as possible. This will limit the amount of editing you have to do.
To improve the quality of the video, make sure it is filmed with good lighting and limit the amount of background noise so the audio is clear.
Once you have your video recorded, whether a screen capture or action footage, you may need to clean it up a bit. You want your video to be as high quality as possible in order to keep your viewers watching to the end. If there are a bunch of mistakes in a tutorial video or long pauses in an action video, you may loose your viewers at that point. You can accomplish simple video editing tasks with software like Windows Movie Maker. Most Windows and Mac computers come with editing software built in. And as luck would have it, there are some great video tutorials on YouTube that show you how to use this software.
How long can you make your videos? You will most likely be uploading your videos to YouTube, since it is the granddaddy of the video sharing sites, in addition to a few other popular sites. YouTube’s basic free account only allows a maximum of ten minutes per video, but you can always break your video up into part 1, part 2, etc. And you can upload as many videos as you want.