In the internet galaxy, YouTube is a universe unto itself. In just over eight years of existence, YouTube sees over 1 billion unique visitors who watch over 4 billion hours of video. PER MONTH. While the traffic is insane, it's safe to assume that your blog readers have spent some kind of time watching YouTube videos recently. Think about it. How many YouTube clips have you watched just since the week started?
Most of us use WordPress, Blogger, Tumblr or other platforms that allow us to share our text, photo and video posts. Some bloggers have made a living on their YouTube channel alone. Yet other superstars have managed to create huge followings on both their blog, their YouTube channel as well as their other social media profiles (Wendy Nguyen, how do you do it?!?)
I spent some time in the YouTube trenches to scope out the top fashion & lifestyle starlets. Whether you're looking to beef up your own YouTube channel, or just looking for some inspiration to infuse more video posts on your blog, these ladies are leading by example.
Crisp & Clean: Wendy's Lookbook
I adore and admire Wendy on just about every social media channel she's on – and I'm not the only one. She's got legions of followers on her blog, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest – but her YouTube channel is where you can really see her shine. Wendy makes sure her videos (and photos) are always as crisp, clean and professional as possible. She uses a Canon 5D Mark 2 to shoot her vids and is very friendly with her editing software (a few free choices for you here.) Check out the behind-the-scenes post of her uber-famous “25 Ways to Style a Scarf” video to see how she concepted, produced and edited the video.
Be Consistent: The Style Diet
Just like your blog posts, a consistent video upload schedule will help build a YouTube following over time. Anna from The Style Diet gets straight to the point in her YouTube bio. Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, you'll see a new video on her channel on fashion, beauty and her lifestyle as a new mommy.
Get Out of Your Comfort Zone: Jarmaine
YouTube videos can literally be a means for you to let it all out there. Jarmaine's over-the-top humor add such a sincere layer of quirkiness, she can't help but stand out in the sea of makeup tutorial and haul videos.
Short & Sweet: LEAFtv
Geri Hirsch says the inspiration behind her and co-founder Erin Falconer's LEAFtv (Living, Eating & Fashion) channel is “The girl who has a job, is social, wants to be in a dope outfit and just needs a little help.” Simple enough, yet LEAFtv is able to be that and so much more. By keeping videos tightly edited and concise (most are right between 30 seconds & 1 minute), you can learn everything from how to layer jewelry & wear a white shirt 4 ways to how to mince garlic & make the perfect martini.
Elle & Blair are sisters who shot to YouTube stardom simply by being true to who they are. Watching their videos is like sitting across from your roommate or best friend, who just happens to be giving you a rundown of her new favorite nail polishes or a tour of her new home. It's common for bloggers to hear that they should ‘write like they speak' – and the same rule runs true in front of the camera, too.
Become the Teacher: Chriselle Lim
All of these YouTube stars are great at teaching their viewers how to style their hair, face and outfits. Chriselle Lim's smartly edited videos are shot with an editorial feel, with style tips, eye-catching graphics and kitschy props that weave her tutorial together. Chriselle includes links to outfit pieces and her other social media sites in the description of each video – a smart way to convey all the pertinent link info (maybe with affiliate links!)
Most of us (me included) don't have the time or patience to produce beautifully edited videos. That's where the magic of Dawn Del Russo's channel shines. She uses the SocialCam app for iPhone to film quick outfit posts and behind-the-scenes looks at her editorial shoots (she's a stylist by trade.) So if you'd prefer Vine, Videolicious or just your smartphone's camera video option, you can still make great videos on-the-go.
Engage the Community: ThreadBanger
Corrine and Rob of ThreadBanger know their niche and nail it – giving back to their community at the same time. Not only do they share their crafty DIY projects, they regularly encourage their viewers to make their own DIY videos to feature on their channel. Such an awesome way to engage your readership and show them thanks for their loyalty.
Collaborate & Listen: The Platform
The ladies of The Platform are doing what we're all doing with our girls – talking dating, fashion, beauty and life – with the whole world watching. They maintain their own popular YouTube channels while working hard to bring the community of YouTube lifestyle vloggers together via The Platform. They also solicit other lifestyle vloggers to join in on the fun – you can apply to be part of The Platform.
Connect & Keep it Real: Shirley B. Eniang
As bloggers, we will get questions from our readers on what we're posting. YouTube clips are excellent for responding to those questions with the depth and genuineness that just can't be conveyed with the written word. I love British blogger Shirley B. Eniang's response and words of encouragement when asked about the topic of bullying and how to deal: