Video content isn’t going away. In fact it only increases in popularity. If you’ve been meaning to learn how to edit video, we have your back with this quick guide to get you started. We know, it feels like such a big leap going from static images to actually talking to your audience. But with tips ranging from the best online video editors to how to make your content more user-friendly by adding subtitles to your videos - you’re going to conquer this in no time.

Know Your Audience & Your Competition

The main issue with most failing content is it speaks to the wrong audience. It’s the reason why many other entrepreneurs and small business owners wonder why they only attract other industry experts. Avoid this issue by defining who you’re talking to (if you haven’t already). Take time to create conversation with people who fit the profile of your target audience. By really engaging and listening, you wont need to rely on inspiration and you’ll know exactly what topics your videos will need to cover. Think of it as part relationship building and part market research.

  • Who is your target audience?
  • What are their main challenges?
  • What kinds of words or phrases do they use to express their struggles?

You also want to be aware of what your closest competitors are doing. The goal isn’t to copy them but instead to learn from their wins and their failures. If you want to get a strong start with testing content topics in your style that have been proven to work for the competition, you don’t want to skip this step.

  • What have they posted that appears to have performed well?
  • What have they posted that gathered barely any engagement?  

Read up and watch how-to videos on editing optimizing for different social platforms

With billions of people using different online platforms, the competition for attention is cutthroat. Don’t cut corners. Do your research to learn how to edit videos and optimize them for YouTube to appear in search results or how to make a click-worthy thumbnail whether it’s for YouTube or IGTV.

A great video alone doesn’t cut it.

It’s also about writing killer copy for the title and description to entice people. It should also include researched keywords and tags, if on YouTube, to give your content a chance to compete for attention. If you’re on Instagram, copy matters as well but so do hashtags. Think of them as the keywords of the platform that help your content be categorized by the algorithm in order to better show to the right users.

Your Learning Checklist

  • How to optimize content for YouTube
  • Writing strong copy for content descriptions
  • What hashtags you need to rank on Instagram

Decide on Your Gear For Filming & Overall Setup

You don’t need much to get started with video other than a smartphone, good lighting, and a quiet space. With the bare minimum, you can do a lot. Find a spot in your home with good lighting. Usually in front of a window is your best bet. Then, you can either prop your phone up on the windowsill or find some books to stack to get your device up to the desired height. It costs $0 and gets the job done.

But if you have a budget of $100, you can level it up a bit. You can make the best use of that money with a Joby tripod and a  RØDE lavalier mic (the small mics you clip onto your shirt). This way you’ll have stable video and cleaner audio quality.

For those of you who want to kick it up a notch, you’ll want to consider new gear to shoot with and better tools to edit video with. Here are some of our recommendations from our team of experts.

The VEED Video Gear Starter Kit
  • Best Mic for DSLR Cameras: RØDE VideoMic Pro
  • Best Lavalier Mic for Smartphones: RØDE VideoMic Me-L
  • Best Ring Light Brand: Socialite
  • Best Flexible Tripod Brand: Joby GorillaPod
  • Best Sound Proofing: Any foam soundproofing from Amazon will do
  • Best Online Video Editor: VEED

Want to do a little more research on your own?

We’re absolutely obsessed with this amazing website called Kit is a community of creators who share products they swear by. You’re not just getting recommendations for video-related products but even items like home office setups, podcast equipment, or even favorite wine like on Gary Vee’s kit featuring his wine brand.

Wondering what a top YouTuber like Casey Neistat uses? Or maybe you’ve always been curious about D Rock, Gary Vee’s camera guy, and what his essentials are. The even cooler part? Many top-creators will share not just the fancy gear they use but also create Kits for people at different, much lower, budgets.

Prepare a loose script

Prepare everything you say and it’ll feel unnatural. Wing it and you might fall off topic or feel disorganized with your explanations if you’re teaching something. Our personal preference? Loose scripts. A loose script can be done on anything from a Google doc to a post-it note in front of you while you record. It’s comprised of bullet points to keep your ideas flowing in a structured way while maintaining a natural conversational tone. They’re especially important if you’re filming more structured types of content such as how to videos.

You’ll want to lead with the big picture. Don’t make people watch 2 minutes before you finally announce what the video will cover. Quickly and clearly state what the video will be about so people can decide if they want to keep watching. You can even experiment with making storyboards if you want to map out not just the points you’ll make but the video shots that’ll go with it.

Who knows, maybe as you go and become an expert you can wing it. Some more seasoned professionals go about it this way. But for as a newcomer, especially for longer-form video, you’ll likely find a loose script is a solid start.

Add Subtitles To Your Video

466 million people across the globe deal with disabling hearing loss. This is more than 5% of our global population! And in a survey of U.S. consumers, it was found that 92% watch video with the sound off on mobile. When you add subtitles to video, 37% of viewers say they are likely to turn the sound on because the content seems more interesting.

Easy-to-Make Video Auto Subtitles

But most people skip this crucial step because either:

  1. It gets expensive to pay for transcribing every video. Plus, it discourages them from shooting longer-form video due to a per-minute charge.
  2. Many more affordable auto-transcription tools try to offer too many features and become clunky and a pain to use as a result.

With a tool like VEED, you can add subtitles to as many videos as you want every month for an affordable fixed price. It’s simple to use and even has other convenient features such as progress bars, drawing on video, and filters.

The important thing is that you begin. Don’t compare yourself to the pros too much. Everyone starts somewhere. The more you create and post then the more you will become better at editing video and owning your camera presence. Don’t forget to tag us in your video content at @veedstudio on Instagram so we can cheer you on!