How to Make a YouTube Video (Beginner’s Guide)

how to make creative youtube videos

When it comes to posting video content, YouTube is the ultimate destination.

In fact, at this point, YouTube is almost synonymous with internet video.

YouTube has over 1.9 billion monthly active users and they watch a billion hours of video every day. To put that in perspective, that’s over 114,000 years of video consumed EVERY DAY.

Top YouTube content creators can make hundreds — if not thousands — of dollars a day. But ironically, being successful and making money on YouTube has little to do with making videos.

So how DO you become successful on YouTube?

Today I’m going to share with you techniques from some of the top YouTubers that show exactly what you should (and shouldn’t) do for YouTube content creation.

how to make creative youtube videos

And, better yet, I’m going to share a FREE template to help you make YouTube videos faster!

With a few simple steps (and this awesome template), you’ll be creating content in no time!

Make your own YouTube video today!

Download Camtasia to quickly and easily make your own YouTube videos.

Download a free trial

Here’s everything, step-by-step, that you need to make a successful YouTube video:

Step 1. Create a YouTube video strategy

Step 2. Make sure your video is found on YouTube

Step 3. find youtube ideas and topics, step 4. understand youtube equipment for beginners, step 5. learn the first youtube video you should make, step 6. set up your video recording, step 7. record your desktop, step 8. edit your video.

Step 9. Upload your video on YouTube

Step 10. Optimize your video for YouTube

Step 1. create a youtube video strategy, choose the right topic (for the right audience).

Want to know the best-kept secret about being successful on YouTube (or any other content platform)?

It has very little with you as the creator.

You can be charismatic, funny, and smart — but if you don’t provide value, your videos are useless.

It’s not about you or what you can gain. If you show up to YouTube looking to get something out of it, you probably won’t be very successful.

You need to focus on your audience. Not yourself.

You need to focus on your audience. Not yourself.

Find your perfect audience for YouTube

Before you start working on your first script or storyboard , you must answer this question:

“Who is your audience?”

Knowing your audience will guide nearly every decision you make about your video.

Knowing general information is helpful, but think about your specific audience.

If you can’t answer these basic questions you need to dig deeper. The answers to these questions will guide you as you plan out and create your video.

Experts’ Take

As you start looking at what your audience wants and needs, there are some things you can do to help you narrow your focus.

Here’s advice from YouTube experts who have learned (from a lot of practice and work) what you need to define your audience.

YouTube Marketing Consultant Owen Video says, “The very first thing we do is run our clients through a questionnaire that helps them to get the biggest topics that the audience would be interested in.”

Jeremy Vest, Director of Marketing for vidIQ , suggests that listening is critical because “if you don’t listen to your audience then…you’re not going to serve them very well.” However, it’s not all about just seeking what the viewer wants.

Once you have a sense of your audience, you need to create content that matches your persona. It doesn’t matter if your video doesn’t work for other groups or other personas.

When you’re just starting out you want your audience to be as specific as possible.

Niche is good. Broad is bad.

Focus your content on helping the viewer achieve their goals. If you’re selling software, you need to make sure your video helps the viewer learn exactly what they need to be successful.

Fernando Silva, Account Executive for Wistia , emphasizes this need and suggests that we must “[get] a sense to what your audience is actually interested in and what they want to keep watching or maybe what doesn’t interest them. It … helps you make better content in the future.”

If you work hard to understand your audience but aren’t sure of what you should create for them, Tyler Lessard, Vice President of Marketing at Vidyard , stresses that you should, “focus more on the quality of the content and how you deliver it. Making sure it’s relevant to your audience, and I think that’s a simple way to start.”

Throw perfection out the window

Just start.

It’s really that simple.

I know it can be tempting to watch the big-name YouTubers and think you have to create videos just like that and engage a massive audience all at once, but all of those thoughts can be paralyzing.

“I personally believe that we’re all on the same plane, whether you’re a business or whether you’re an individual creator. Because we all start somewhere…” Amy Landino, Co-founder of Aftermarq , and Best-Selling author of Vlog Like a Boss.

Too many people worry about getting things perfect from the beginning. We paralyze ourselves into not creating anything or releasing our content because we’re so concerned about whether we have all the right equipment, or if every part is perfect.

What should you do if you find yourself stuck on making it perfect?

Start by asking yourself a few questions:

Once you answer these questions, give yourself permission to move on. If you focus too much on creating the perfect video you will limit yourself in the long run.

A video can’t be successful if no one sees it! You must consider Search Engine Optimization (SEO) when you start creating your video.

There is a lot to learn and figure out, but mainly you want to get your content found by the people who are searching.

Two key ways to rank your YouTube videos:

At the end of the day, you want your content to be found. SEO can be a hugely complicated endeavor, but you don’t have to do everything at once. The creators we talked with made a few easy suggestions.

Andrew Kan, of TubeBuddy , recommends you make content focused on a specific topic and niches, which will help your content be more searchable. It also helps ensure that the right audience is finding your content.

“Many people spend time on broad terms that have so much competition they’re never going to show up for [in search],” he said. “If you show up on the race day, and you’re [not] a runner and you’ve practiced once, you can’t expect to win. So by practicing, by understanding that being more specific helps you be more discoverable, it helps you win.”

In addition to focusing your content on specific topics, Jeremy Vest recommends that you make sure your content is helpful and answers questions your potential audience is asking.

“Match that search intent with ‘how do I fix this blank’, and you sell that blank,” he said. “Instead of just talking about how good your widget is, be the answer to questions being asked … And being the answer to those is…one of the easiest ways for brands to start doing well in this environment and then from there beat that expectation. Provide things they’re not expecting. Have guests they wouldn’t expect to be on your program. And, give more value than they can even believe.”

To make your content helpful and findable, consider the questions being asked and where they’re being asked. Then you can create the right content and post it where it will be found.

Now that you know your audience, you may be wondering “What should I make a YouTube video about?” The good news is that there are tons of ways to find YouTube video ideas that your audience is searching for.

Let’s say you run a home contracting business. You decide you are going to target your channel towards current homeowners looking to spruce up their house. Your initial video topics might include things like How to Remove Popcorn Ceilings or How to Refinish Your Kitchen Cabinets.

That’s a great start, but for even more ideas than your initial list, here are some tips from Gord Isman of the best places you can use to get inspired and find highly-relevant topics for your specific audience.

1. YouTube search

YouTube search is one of the best ways to find what people are looking for. When you come up with a content idea, do a quick YouTube search and see what comes back.

Then look at the search results and decide if it’s a saturated area or there’s room to create a unique, valuable version.

You want to choose topics that you’re passionate about and that are relevant to your audience.

When you have a basic topic idea YouTube can help you narrow it down.

Search YouTube by typing some keywords into the search bar.

The auto-suggest/autocomplete feature will give you additional keywords that YouTube suggests.

Here’s an example where I typed “tutorial video” into the search bar, and a list of suggested topics appeared below.

Make sure your video is found on YouTube

You want to take those terms and write them down. You may find after all of your research that one video can cover a lot of the same topics, or that you can create a series of videos.

For a topic focusing on “video tutorial” I would want to focus on editing, video ideas, and background music as a good starting point.

2. Comments section

The comments section of videos and articles can be a great resource for YouTube video topics.

Viewers often suggest additional topics or ask questions that suggest areas of interest for creating additional content.

Find YouTube ideas and topics.

So start by looking at a competitor’s YouTube channel and start mining the comments.

3. Communities and groups

Whether it’s Twitter, a Facebook group, or a membership group, find like-minded people who will inspire you and help you out along the way.

Don’t discourage yourself by assuming you must go at it alone.

Find a group that you can bounce ideas off of and ask questions. You might even come away with some different (and better) video topics to start with.

4. Ask your audience

If you already have an audience (even a small one) it’s worth asking them what types of content they would like to see.

This is a surefire way to figure out what your audience wants to know, learn, and watch.

It can be easy to get overwhelmed and feel like you don’t have the right tools to create your video.

It’s fun to have high-end equipment and there is no question that better equipment can produce a better quality video.

Keep in mind, too, that highly specialized equipment that can be complex to run, and requires considerable time and training to master.

Especially as you’re starting out, try not to worry too much about equipment.

First, learn to get good at creating the content and worry about leveling up your gear later.

If you’re still worried about what gear you should use, Brian Fanzo, of iSocialFanz has some advice. He suggests baby steps, “…start with your phone, and then move to a web camera, then move to professional gear.”

A lot can be done with things like screen recording software, a simple video editor, or a smartphone and a little bit of creativity.

These tools can help you learn the basics of video creation, and help you to practice good techniques that will be beneficial no matter what gear you use.

“So many people focus on ‘I don’t have the right gear’ and ‘I don’t have the right camera,’ but they don’t really think about, well, what is my message? What am I trying to get across with my brand? They don’t want to just be told, buy my product. If you can make someone feel something, if you can make them relate to what you’re doing, that’s more important than any piece of gear.” Andrew Kan, TubeBuddy

Here is some of the basic gear (outside of your phone) you may want to consider if you are going to create high-quality YouTube videos:

1. Microphone

Whether for your mobile device, input directly into your camera, or even a digital recorder, a microphone will improve the overall quality of you your video. A decent mic doesn’t have to be expensive, but it is well worth it.

2. Screen recorder and video editor

When you choose screen recording software , pick a tool with built-in recording, editing, and sharing features. It will save you time and let you do all of your work in one tool.

Recording your screen is a great way to make a YouTube video without a camera. At TechSmith, we think Camtasia is the perfect video editing software for beginners. And, it has the power and versatility to level-up with you as you gain more skills.

If you want to learn more about Camtasia and it’s simple video editing functionality, check out this quick video from Tim Schmoyer of Video Creators .

3. Lighting

If you’re recording camera video or even a webcam, video lighting will make a big difference in how you look, and the overall quality.

Video lighting will make a big difference in how you look, and the overall quality.

Lights will even improve the look of mobile device videos and can be a great investment. You don’t have to pay a lot of money for lights when starting. Since lighting is a mixture of science and art, a basic set will help you create a professional-looking video.

4. Camera or webcam

Cameras can be large investments, ranging from hundreds to thousands of dollars.

While DSLRs or other high-end cameras can drastically improve the look of your video, they also add a ton of settings and options that need to be managed, increasing the complexity of shooting your video.

An external webcam is a relatively inexpensive option to improve your video quality. Most built-in webcams are pretty low quality when compared to their external counterparts.

And don’t forget, you probably have a pretty nice camera in your pocket, backpack, or purse. Most of the latest smartphones can record video in full HD (1080p), and many can even do 4K.

There are all kinds of videos that people create on YouTube. The best video you can start with is an instructional video .

According to a recent  TechSmith study , 53% of people reported watching two or more instructional videos per week (up 152% compared to 2013).

A simple tutorial or how-to video is a great way to get your feet wet.

A tutorial video simply answers a question someone asked. It could be How to Freeze Panes in Excel or How to Change Your Oil . Either way, you’re simply sharing your expert knowledge with others.

These types of videos are all over YouTube, and with good reason.

According to a Pew research study that surveyed over 4,500 Americans in 2018, 87 percent of users said that YouTube is important for helping them figure out how to do things they haven’t done before.

That means you have a great opportunity to take create helpful and valuable instructional videos for your audience.

Do you have dog training tips to share? Gather a list of all the questions a dog owner might have and create a series of how-to videos to give them answers.

Learn the first YouTube video you should make.

If you are an expert in Photoshop and want to help others get better, a tutorial video or training video would be a great place to start.

The best video you can start with is an instructional video.

And if you’re a business or entrepreneur, there’s no better place to start than a product demo video or explainer video .

These videos will help your potential customers see exactly what your product or service does without having to read a ton of material.

You have a great opportunity to take create helpful and valuable instructional videos for your audience.

People look for video help every day. Learning and educational content alone drives over a billion views a day on YouTube .

By the end of this guide, you’ll be able to make a high-quality YouTube video using screen recorded content, just like this one from TubeBuddy :

Now that you know your audience, have you topics planned out, and know what video to make it’s time to get started making your video.

A script may seem pretty formal, but it’s a great tool to help you stay focused. Plan out the visuals (shots, angles, graphics, etc.) that go along with each line of dialogue.

If you already have a blog post for a topic, I’d suggest you write a script based off of the original post. It doesn’t have to be elaborate.

Write a script or outline

If a script seems like overkill, a simple outline will help you talk through your points, and is better than hitting record without a plan.

Write a script or outline for your Youtube video.

Clean up your desk (and desktop)

One of the top mistakes to avoid when you record yourself is to have too much clutter, both on and off the screen.

If you’re shooting a video at your desk, business, or home you want your environment to be clean and presentable.

Next, you’ll need to adjust your camera or webcam, and video lighting (if you have them). Use an external webcam mounted behind your laptop, or—even better—turn a DSLR camera into your webcam for superior video quality.

Here’s everything you need to know about setting up your workspace for a perfect video:

Clean up your mess

If you’re getting shots of yourself, make sure anything that can be seen on screen is clean and free from clutter. A blank, single-color wall is a great background, but if you don’t have access to that, just make sure that your setting is as free from distractions as possible.

You want your viewers focused on you, not the artwork on your wall.

If your video includes a screen capture or screen recording, clutter on your computer screen is just as distracting. And there’s nothing worse than having to fumble through unnecessary apps and programs to get what you actually want to show in your video.

Make sure to close any unnecessary programs and windows before you record your video.

Make sure to close any unnecessary programs and windows before you record.

Avoid recording in front of windows

If you record near a window, avoid recording in front of it. Position yourself next to the window or facing the window. This way, you won’t be washed out or become a silhouette. Pro tip: this is also a great way to enhance your lighting, though be careful, as it can be hard to control the amount of light.

If you record near a window, avoid recording in front of it.

Position your camera correctly

Tilt your webcam or camera so that it’s at eye level and your viewers don’t have to look up at you. Stick to the Rule of Thirds or position yourself in the center of the frame.

Tilt your webcam or camera so that it’s at eye level and your viewers don’t have to look up at you.

Pick your favorite screen recorder and walk through your script as you record your desktop .

Here at TechSmith, we use Camtasia for a lot of our YouTube videos.

It’s perfect for anyone who needs to make instructional videos on YouTube and we have a ton of help videos to get you started.

Your recording can be as simple or complex as you want to make it. You can record webcam to give it some personality, create an intro , add music , or simply hit record and share it out.

1. Record your screen

To start a recording, click the Record button at the top of the tools panel. This opens the Camtasia recorder, which by default, is set to capture everything that happens on your screen.

Record your screen with Camtasia.

2. Customize your settings

First, you’ll want to choose to record the full screen or select a custom region to record.

Next, choose other inputs to record along with the screen. Options include webcam, microphone audio, and system audio. Select the down arrow or double arrows next to each to choose a specific microphone or webcam.

When you’re finished recording, click the Camtasia recorder icon in the taskbar, then the stop button.

Finally, click ‘Start Recording’ to begin.

3. Finish Recording

When you’re finished recording, click the Camtasia recorder icon in the taskbar, then the stop button. If you need to re-record, choose ‘delete’ to start over.

Quick Tip: Press “F10” to stop a recording, or “F9” to pause/resume a recording.

To finish the recording, click the Camtasia icon in the Apple menu bar, then click “Stop Recording.” Or, if you need to re-record, choose “Start Over.”

Quick Tip: Press “CMD+OPTION+2” to stop a recording, or “CMD+SHIFT+2” to pause/resume a recording.

Editing your video can be the most fun and most time-consuming part of the creation process. And for a beginner, it can definitely be the most overwhelming.

Here a few simple edits you can use to get started:

1. Trim mistakes

Often we record a little extra at the beginning and end of a recording. To remove the extra content, drag the end of the clip “in.” This is called trimming. If you trim too much, drag the video clip back to restore your video.

It’s good to note that any edits you make on the timeline, won’t affect your original recording in the media bin.

2. Use cuts

Drag the red or green handle on the playhead to select the area to remove, then click the cut button to remove the section. A stitched line appears, showing you where the cut was made.

If you make a selection and want to bring the playhead back together, double click the playhead.

3. Add titles, transitions, annotations, and more

Add a level of polish and professionalism to your videos with eye-catching titles, annotations, effects and more. Click and drag them from the tools panel to the timeline or canvas.

Video editing tips

There are endless resources across the web that can show you the intricate details of video editing. But there are a few video editing tips you’ll need to make a high-quality video without overcomplicating it.

Let’s go over some other common enhancements that can really make your video stand out.

Add a simple intro

A video intro leads your viewers into your content. Keep your intro simple and to the point. Viewers want to get to the meat of your content. They don’t care about anything other than what you promised to teach them.

A video intro leads your viewers into your content.

An intro can be used throughout all the videos on your YouTube channel, a playlist, or just a single video.

Create lower-thirds

A lower-third (also called a chyron) is placed on the lower third portion (usually to the right or left) of the screen and is a simple way to provide your audience with information. Usually, they display a name, place, or other useful information.

They shouldn’t cover up your visual and are meant to be complementary to your primary subject.

Finally, you’ll want to add music to your video . It will probably take you more time to choose the music you want to use than it will to actually add it to your video.

For most purposes, your best bet is to use music from a premium royalty-free music site. While the music won’t be free, it’s typically inexpensive, and you’ll have a wider range of high-quality music to choose from.

Where can you find music for videos? You can access a huge library of free and premium music tracks from TechSmith Assets .

Focus on good audio and voice over

Poor audio can sink your video.

For recording voice over , you can use Camtasia. However, for the easiest voice over experience, I highly recommend TechSmith Audiate.

Audiate transcribes your voice over as you speak. You can then edit your audio just like editing text. No more searching through the wave form to find your mistakes.

And, Audiate even lets you quickly find and delete your “ums,” “uhs,” and other mumbles and hesitations.

If you have music in your video, make sure it doesn’t overpower your with your voice over. Don’t be afraid to add those phat beats, but remember that your audience is here to learn from what you’re saying.

Pay special attention to your final edit by focusing on the sound. Close your eyes and just listen to your video. If it sounds off, you should adjust it, regardless of how amazing your footage or screen content is.

“My editing style has always been to keep our content as concise as possible. I want people to get what they need from my videos as fast as possible. And to keep our videos on brand, we always use the same font, brand colors, and tone of music – which creates consistency and familiarity.” Sunny Lenarduzzi, Founder of YouTube for Bosses

Create a compelling outro

A YouTube outro is where you can add specific calls to action to your video. This can also be referred to as the end screen, and it is the last part of your video.

There are four different content types available for use in your end screens on YouTube, called elements. These four elements are:

Step 9. Upload your video to YouTube

Uploading to YouTube is simple. If you use Camtasia to create your YouTube video you’ll have the option to share directly to YouTube from within the product. You’ll simply have to log into YouTube and connect your YouTube account to Camtasia.

Upload your video to YouTube.

Or you can upload videos with the YouTube platform.

As you start making your video there are few key areas you’ll want to focus in on to make sure your video performs well in YouTube. By being strategic while you make your video you’ll give yourself a better shot at ranking on YouTube.

Video Production Optimization

Target keywords that list videos on google

Have you noticed more videos popping up in your search results?

Optimize your video for YouTube.

Google processes 3.5 billion searches per day, and many how-to based searches now include YouTube videos directly in the Google search engine result.

These online videos show up for all sorts of searches. Simply type in “how to fix my fridge” or “how to change spark plugs” and Google will give you the top YouTube videos based on your search.

Make longer videos

Longer videos generally rank higher than shorter ones.

Backlinko analyzed 1.3 Million YouTube Videos and found that the average length of a video on the first page of YouTube is 14 minutes, 50 seconds.

YouTube will push longer videos higher in search results.

Longer videos Youtube generally rank higher than shorter ones.

This has to do with two key ranking factors : Total Watch Time and Total Session Time.

Essentially YouTube will push videos higher in the ranking if they provide value and keep people on the site as long as possible.

So as you plan your videos, think about how you can expand them. And rather than just adding filler content, think about how you can dive deeper into your topic to create an even more useful video.

The Marketer’s Ultimate Guide to Video

In our FREE ebook, we’ve put together practical strategies to get out of the woods and create engaging, powerful video content on your own that reaches your audience.

Download now!

Make sure your keyword is spoken in your video

YouTube transcribes your content, so try and say your main keyword 1-2 times in the script.

Make sure your keyword is spoken in your video Youtube.

Make a unique introduction

Retention is everything on
 YouTube. Incentivize users to
 watch as long as possible in 
your first 10 seconds. Tease out what you’re going to talk about and give them a reason to stay and watch your video.

Tell users to…

Comment, like, subscribe, and visit your site at the end of the video. If you don’t tell them to do it, they probably never will. And if you are creating supportive, helpful content they will be more likely to interact with your YouTube channel.

Comment, like, subscribe, and visit your site at the end of the video.

YouTube Ranking Optimization

Now that you’ve created an optimized video, it’s time to optimize within the YouTube platform. You don’t want to overcomplicate this. It isn’t about stuffing keywords into places and trying to trick YouTube into ranking your video.

You want to be strategic in what you do, and above all else, provide value to your audience.

Title, description, and thumbnail

Get the keyword in the title and description, preferably at the front, but don’t forget to make it compelling and click-worthy . It’s less about trying to stuff keywords in and more about letting viewers know that your video will help solve what they are looking for.

Pro tip: Be honest in your title and description. People stop watching videos that don’t deliver on their promises.

Get the keyword in the title and description, preferably at the front.

According to YouTube , 90% of the best-performing videos on YouTube use a custom thumbnail. Try to make your YouTube thumbnail interesting and different than everything else in the search results.

Try to make your YouTube thumbnail interesting and different than everything else in the search results.

Make your video worthy of a click.

Leverage your current audience to build video velocity

The first 48 hours your video goes live are critical. This is where leveraging your current audience plays a big part.

You can create a stronger buzz and your views begin to climb through your existing base. Owen Video likes to create video velocity by acquiring views before a video is public and rewarding his followers with exclusive content.

As a result, YouTube sees the video as more valuable and it becomes more likely to appear high in the search results.

Here is one of Owen Video’s most successful strategies for YouTube video promotion . Mirroring his strategy with your own videos will help you improve their performance early on:

Owen Video’s video promotion strategy example:

This is video velocity, and essentially, you’re getting a head start on YouTube.

“So what happens is, you create velocity with your video…people are watching it before it’s even public, yet. Having that distribution, or pre-promotion plan is going to set [you] apart from your competitors who are just figuring this stuff out.” – Owen Video

What’s next?

We’ve covered a lot in this guide. And whether you’re just getting started, or you’re a video veteran, you’ve learned some of the key tools and strategies to create successful YouTube videos.

Camtasia is built for anyone who needs to make any kind of instructional video. We offer a ton of helpful tutorials to get you started. And, for the record, we make 100% of our tutorials and other screencasts using Camtasia.

Frequently asked questions

To make your first YouTube video, start by getting a simple video editor like Camtasia and just try making a few videos on topics you’re an expert on. If you know a lot about a particular product or service, try putting together a quick tutorial. There is no shortage of people searching for help across YouTube, and you could be their answer.

There are tons of ways to find YouTube video ideas that your audience is searching for. Three of my favorites are YouTube searches, comments sections, and communities.

There are all kinds of videos that people create on YouTube. Over half of the  most common types of videos that marketers are investing in  are a  type of instructional video . That gives you a lot of good videos to start with.

YouTubers use all sorts of different programs to edit their videos, but at TechSmith, we think Camtasia is the perfect video editing software for beginners. If you want to learn more about Camtasia and it’s simple video editing functionality, check out this quick video from Tim Schmoyer of Video Creators

Recording your screen is a great way to make a YouTube video without a camera. When you choose  screen recording software , pick a tool with built-in recording, editing, and sharing features. It will save you time and let you do all of your work in one tool.

It can be easy to get overwhelmed and feel like you don’t have the right tools to create your video. Start with your phone or screen recorder and a simple video editor . Then move to professional gear.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in May 2019 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.

how to make creative youtube videos

Justin Simon

Global Content Strategy Manager at TechSmith. I play a lot of golf and watch a lot of football.

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How to Make a YouTube Video: 16 Tips for Beginners

Written by <a href="" target="_self">Sam Parker</a>

Written by Sam Parker

Last updated on 26th October 2022

YouTube is the second most visited website in the world and is a major player in the video content market. With this platform, brands can engage consumers, create value-adding content, promote their products, and build brand recognition. For those who are new to video marketing, making a YouTube video might seem daunting. Alternatively, if you’ve tried YouTube before, you might simply be seeking ways to improve your video performance. In either case, you’re in the right place!

This post is packed with tricks that will help you make the most of your new video from start to finish – from research to equipment to optimization.

Article Contents

How to make a YouTube video: our top tips

Making a great YouTube video isn’t just about the content in the video itself. Video marketing and production involves plenty of other important components that can help you reach your video goals. We’ve compiled our top tips for how to research and plan your video, what kind of equipment to use, how to structure your video, and how to optimise and upload it to the platform in a matter of minutes.

5 research and planning tips

research and planning

1. Perform competitor research

The best place to start as you learn how to make a YouTube video is with a little competitive research. Take a look at how your competitors are using video content in their marketing strategy, and use them as a source of inspiration as you create content. You can also find their content gaps and fill them with your own content; for example, if you notice your biggest competitor doesn’t have video FAQs, that can be a great way to stand out and add value for your potential customers.

To get started, create a list of your competitors, and then review their YouTube channels. Take a look at which of their videos have the most views and comments to see what your target audience is engaging with. As you review them, see if there are themes you can learn from – patterns that unite the most popular videos, topics that don’t get a lot of traction, and so on. This process will help you understand what resonates with your audience before you invest resources into creating your own content.

2. Perform keyword research

YouTube keyword research is an SEO tactic you can use to find the best search terms to include in your video content. Simply adding intentional, researched search terms to your video title and meta description can drastically improve your video’s performance.

You can start by making some assumptions about what your audience is searching for. For example, a decking company might already know people will search for “DIY deck repair” or “how to restain a deck.” Do a bit of research on your own by searching for these terms on YouTube. If you see videos from your competitors, you know you’re on the right track. As you review them, see if they have a lot of views, are high quality, and answer the question appropriately. This will help you see where there are opportunities to create better content that could rank higher in user searches. You can perform more sophisticated keyword research using an online keyword tool; we’ve compiled our favourites in our post The 9 Best YouTube Keyword Tools .

As you incorporate your search terms, consider including a written copy of your video transcript in the description to maximise your possibility of showing up in search results. For more on video SEO, check out our post Video SEO: The Ultimate Guide .

3. Create a cohesive tone

There’s a reason why movies are categorised into genres. Imagine this: you’re watching a horror movie, and you’re on the edge of your seat in anticipation of the next blood-curdling moment. But just as you expect a dramatic, terrifying scene to unfold, the movie takes a comedic turn. Suddenly you’re watching two characters exchange quippy dialogue, and the thrill is totally lost. Talk about a mood killer. The same thing can happen in marketing videos.

As you consider your video, think about the overall mood of the piece you’re creating, and how all of the video’s elements – music, lighting, voice over, even the colour composition – come together to create that mood and reflect your brand. Be sure the tone of your video is consistent throughout and reflective of your overall goal. You can start this process by simply brainstorming a list of words to guide your process; you might want to create a video that’s motivational and inspiring, one that’s serious and tear-jerking, or one that’s high-octane and fast-paced. Whatever direction you choose to go, establish that before you collect footage so your video reflects the mood you’re trying to create.

4. Scout a location

If you’re filming on location, for example at your office or home, location scouting can be a pretty easy task. Simply set up your camera in various places to find the best physical spot for your shoot; as you preview options, consider what’s in the background of the shot and the lighting to find the optimal location – but more on that later.

If you’re shooting off-site, allow yourself plenty of time to find the right location. Consider whether you need access to electricity depending on your equipment setup, how the natural light affects the shot at that time of day, and how crowded the location is. Be sure to scout on the day of the week and time of day you plan to shoot to collect enough data on your location. For example, if you’re filming outdoors at a local park, you may want to plan your video shoot during school hours so you have the place to yourself. Finally, some locations require permits to collect footage, so be sure to do your research and ask for permission if you’re using someone else’s business or a public facility.

5. Write a script and create a storyboard

The last thing you want to do is show up on location with no idea of how the end video should look. Overcome this avoidable problem before you capture your footage by taking time to create a script and a storyboard. Begin by writing your script. Your script might include on-camera dialogue that actors say, or voiceover that’s layered on top of footage in post-production. Either way, keep your script simple, and keep your sentences short. When someone is reading text, they can go back and re-read it if a sentence is long or complex; however, when watching a video, viewers aren’t likely to rewind a video to listen again. You get one shot to make a lasting impression, so be sure your message is simple, concise, and clear.

Next, take your script a step further as you create a storyboard. A storyboard is like a comic-book-style overview of your video. It shows how different shots come together to tell a single visual story. You can create a storyboard using software like Storyboarder , or you can simply sketch out your ideas. You don’t need to invest a lot of time and resources into this process; the goal is to have a high-level overview of the content and flow of your video so you can produce it well and tell a cohesive story.

Both storyboarding and script writing should take place before you start collecting footage so your team has a shared vision for the end result. If you need a little inspiration to get the process started, check out our post 21 YouTube Video Ideas for Businesses .

Equipment tips

equipment tips

6. Use equipment you already have

Making a YouTube video doesn’t have to be expensive. You can probably leverage hardware you already have to create your video. Most recent smartphones come with high-quality cameras that are perfect for shooting videos; you can even purchase an inexpensive tripod for your phone to ensure the shot is still. Depending on the type of video you’re creating, you can also use the webcam that’s built into your computer, or purchase an external web camera. This method is great for shooting things like webinars, testimonials , tutorials, and interviews.

If you find that neither of these options are giving you the video quality you’re looking for, you can either purchase equipment of your own, rent equipment from a video hardware rental company, or work with a video production partner. The right choice for you will depend largely on your timeline, your budget, and how much content you plan to create ongoing. For example, if you’re going to create a weekly vlog, it may be time to invest in equipment you can keep at the office. But if your video is for a one-off campaign, it could be worth hiring experts rather than investing in equipment you likely won’t continue to use.

7. Test your audio

Nothing makes a video feel like an amateur production more than poor-quality audio. If you’re going to use your camera on your phone or computer, be sure to run an audio test. Having clear audio is critical to your video feeling professional and polished, and getting quality audio isn’t a huge obstacle. First, test your audio on the camera you’re using to film your video and in the environment you’re going to film it. This test will give you a sense of how close your actors or interviewees need to be to the camera, and whether there’s a lot of noise in the background. If your test shows that your audio quality needs some work, it might be worth investing in an external microphone to ensure your audio is clear and high quality.

8. Test your lighting

Lighting is what sets high-quality and low-quality videos apart. Before you start shooting, do a few lighting tests. You can invest in quality lighting equipment if your budget allows, take a trip to your local hardware store for a down and dirty DIY lighting kit , or simply move existing lighting around to get the look you’re going for. Performing a lighting test before your shoot will help you eliminate any unanticipated surprises; for example, if you’re filming in a room with windows, you’ll want to be sure the natural light doesn’t create distracting shadows in the frame. If you’re shooting outdoors, shoot during the golden hour: the hour or two leading up to sunset. The softness of the natural light outside is perfect for capturing great footage at that time.

9. Download the right editing software

If you’re willing to watch a few tutorials and be patient throughout the process, you probably have all the skills you need to edit a YouTube video yourself. Luckily there are plenty of free or affordable video editing platforms available, and you might already have one on your computer. If you’re using a Mac, your computer comes with iMovie pre-installed. This program covers the editing basics, allowing you to splice footage, add text overlays and effects, change audio levels, and more. There are also plenty of other options available for download on a Mac or PC, like well-known Adobe Premier Pro and Final Cut Pro X , and a couple of our other favourites, Filmora and Movavi . Before you select an option, compare features and read customer reviews to find the right software for your needs. You could also consider using a lightweight video editing app on your phone; for more on those options, check out The 21 Best Video Editing Apps for Android, iPhone and iPad .

If editing isn’t in your wheelhouse, you could also hire an outside company or freelance video editor to edit your video for you. This process can be made even easier if you created a storyboard, because then the editor will have an idea of what the viewer should see on screen throughout the video.

Intro and outro tips

intros and outros

10. An attention-grabbing intro

How many times have you started a video only to close out of it in just a few seconds because it didn’t draw you in? Your audience is no different. Today’s video viewers are very particular; you have to grab their attention in the first five seconds if you want to keep them around, which makes your video intro extremely important.

Your video intro might be something you use at the beginning of every video to promote your brand. If you’ve ever watched a TED Talk, you’ll recognise their consistent, on-brand video intro:

But your intro could also be created specifically to give your viewers a preview at what’s to come. For example, to use our decking company situation, the intro might simply look like someone coming on camera to explain what’s going to happen in the video: “In just five minutes, I’m going to show you how to sand and stain your deck, and share some helpful tips along the way to ensure a quality finished product.” This gives the audience confidence that they’ve found the video they’re looking for, and keeps them engaged.

The right approach for your video intro will depend on what kind of video you’re creating and how often you create content. If you’re looking for some awesome tools to help you make your video intro, look no further; we’ve compiled a list of our favourite intro maker tools for you already.

11. A compelling video outro

Assuming your video intro did its job of captivating your audience, and your video content kept them intrigued to watch the rest of your video, you should use the outro to compel them to take action. Your outro could include a call to action to visit your website, subscribe to your channel, watch additional videos, contact your team, or more. Either way, be sure not to leave your viewers hanging at the end, wondering what to do next. Instead, make their next steps very clear in your outro. Also be sure your other elements – visuals, music, voice overs, and more – come to a graceful close so you don’t create a jarring end experience for your viewers. For a little inspiration, check out this quirky video outro from Adobe Creative Cloud:

Video uploading and optimisation tips

video uploading and optimisation

12. Upload your video in minutes

YouTube makes uploading videos incredibly simple. To get started, simply navigate to the Video Manager, available from your channel’s page (if you don’t know how to make a YouTube channel, don’t worry – we’ve created a step-by-step guide for you). Here’s a quick rundown of how to upload your first video:

Wyzowl YouTube page

13. Optimise your video’s data

Remember back in the planning section when we discussed keyword research? This is where it comes into play. While your video is uploading, you can input critical video data, like your title, description, and tags, to optimise your video and improve your SEO. Here are a few tips to make the most of your video data:

14. Select an eye-catching thumbnail

While the written portion of your YouTube data is important to optimisation, selecting the right visual – a.k.a. the video thumbnail – is also important. Your thumbnail is the only image associated with your video in search results, so it’s got to stand out in the crowd. YouTube will automatically select a thumbnail for you, but it probably isn’t the most compelling image you could use from your video. Instead, select a custom thumbnail that will earn the attention your video deserves. Here are a few of our favourite tips:

Choose thumbnail YouTube

15. Promote your video on other digital channels

Just because your video is live doesn’t mean your work is over. Now you have the task of promoting your video on other channels; while YouTube will do some of that work for you (as long as you’ve done your SEO homework and appear in the search results), you can still do some outbound marketing to extend your reach. Consider these tips as you share your video:

16. Keep an eye on your analytics

YouTube has sophisticated built-in analytics that make it easy for you to see how your video is performing. Just like Google Analytics on your website, YouTube Analytics lets you track:

You can use this data to inform your content strategy moving forward. What videos are people engaging with the most? How can you create more content like those videos to improve your overall video strategy? Is there one video that’s so popular you want to run a paid ad campaign to get even more traction? These metrics can help you make informed decisions about your content plan moving forward.

Wrapping up

As you set out to amplify your YouTube presence, why limit yourself to just a video? After all, YouTube reaches more 18-49 year-olds than any TV network, so it’s in your best interest to leverage all of its features and functionalities to reach your audience – including YouTube channels and playlists. To get started, check out How To Create a YouTube Channel in 2022 and How To Make a Playlist on YouTube (Step-By-Step) for more tips on how to make the most of this powerful video marketing platform.

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Consider this your one stop shop for everything you need to know about advertising on YouTube in 2023.

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Adobe Express is everything you need to create a YouTube video; we even have example videos. Adobe Express is web-based and completely free, so there’s no limit to the number of projects you can create. Use your own text, animation, video sequences, and images, or browse through the Adobe Express collection of free stock photos.

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How to make a YouTube video.

Customize your youtube video even more..

Your YouTube video is saved to your Adobe Express project organizer so that you can edit it at any time. Change themes, music, images or text, and add or delete slides as needed. For tips and design advice, visit the Adobe Express blog and tutorials or browse the inspiration gallery for ideas.

Professional results for your YouTube channel.

Professional video production services are never cheap, and they don’t always connect with the source material. By using Adobe Express to edit and create videos, you can stay in charge of the creative process without breaking the bank. With the Adobe Express simple, easy-to-use design, you don’t need to be a video production expert to make stunning unique videos. Best of all, Adobe Express is completely free.

More Adobe Express YouTube video examples.

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What kind of YouTube video do you want to make? Pick a  template  (or start from scratch).

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Upload it to youtube (but make sure it fits their guidelines first).

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Hailey shows you how to create stunning videos with Biteable’s online YouTube video maker.

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Getting started

An online youtube video maker that inspires clicks.

YouTube is one of the best places to put your brand front and center. With so many people watching, making a YouTube video as soon as possible should be one of your first priorities. Sound complicated? It’s not. Say hello to Biteable’s online YouTube video maker.

Templates ahoy

All it takes to get started is a template – and we’ve got loads of them. Our team of experts religiously study what makes effective YouTube videos tick. With their super-ninja knowledge, they craft the best YouTube ad templates possible.

You don’t need a degree in advertising to jump in – all you need is a brand to market. (And the best online YouTube video maker in your back pocket, of course.)

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We love video and want you to love it too. That’s why our video maker for YouTube gives you access to 24+ million animations,  stock footage clips , images, and video scenes. Edit and  combine  them as you see fit, or upload your content to throw into the mix.

Need new footage? No problem. Record video clips directly in Biteable and add them to your video with the click of a button. While you’re at it, include a voiceover. You can do it all with our YouTube video maker.

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Get the most out of your YouTube video creator software

It doesn’t matter if you’ve got a pro laptop or an old brick of a computer, you can make stunning videos with Biteable’s online YouTube video creator software as long as you have an internet connection.

Although you can pick a template and make a video in no time, there are still a few useful tips to keep in mind to make your YouTube video all killer, no filler.

Hook viewers fast

With YouTube videos and ads, it’s vital to get to the point quickly. Don’t labor on slow introductions — viewers find that sort of thing tedious. The best thing you can do is answer the question on everyone’s mind: “Why am I watching this video?”

Boredom is the common enemy content creators and advertisers have to grapple with on YouTube. Viewers have a short attention span, and when you’ve got millions of videos at your disposal, why would you want to watch something that’s not entertaining?

Make it short and sweet

How many times have you been watching a YouTube video only to turn it off or change videos because you lose interest? And how many times have you clicked the ‘Skip Ad’ button when an ad plays before your video?

After you hook viewers, the best way to keep them engaged is to not waffle. This means you’ll have less people closing your videos and skipping your ads halfway through, watching through to the end, and increasing interest in your content and brand.

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You’ve got Biteable’s online YouTube video maker on your side, so your all set. But if you really wan to kick things into video-making overdrive, we’ve got a few more tips.

Consider the big questions

No need to ponder the meaning of life here, we’re not talking  that  big a question. Take a step back and consider:

People go to YouTube for two main reasons: to be informed or entertained. This means you should tailor your content to those expectations.

For example, if you’re a plumber, it might be a good idea to post videos detailing funny stuff like a list of the strange things you’ve found clogging up pipes (entertaining), or to post short how-to videos in order to establish your business as an authority in the field (informative).

Work on your strategy

YouTube videos are best suited to a long-term advertising strategy as opposed to more ephemeral, ‘here today, gone tomorrow’ platforms like Facebook or Twitter. But bear in mind that any social media presence can influence how visible your website is to search engines.

Don’t worry if your YouTube channel isn’t flooded with viewers after the first few hours. Sometimes it takes a while for a channel to build momentum, but good quality and regular video content will go a long way toward becoming more prominent in YouTube searches.

Have a look at your video stats in YouTube’s channel manager. If people regularly skip the intro, consider making it shorter. If the shorter titles retain more viewers, go with that strategy. Continually testing means you’ll keep getting better as you learn more about your audience.

FAQs for your inner YouTube video maker

Knowing how to make videos for YouTube is one part art, one part science (or something like that). Either way, we’ve got more scientific-ish answers to your questions about how to become the best YouTube video maker you can be.

How do I make a video for YouTube?

To make a video for YouTube:

How do I make a YouTube video that engages people?

Making a YouTube video is easy. Making a video that engages people takes a little more finesse. To get started, follow these best practices:

How do you make a YouTube animation?

To make a YouTube animation using Biteable’s online video maker:

Is YouTube Creator Studio free?

Yes, YouTube Creator Studio is free. After you make your YouTube videos and add them to your channel, use the Creator Studio to manage your content. This is where you’ll find video statistics. It’s also where you can choose a video thumbnail, edit your video titles and descriptions (to optimize for SEO), and add timestamps.

What video maker do YouTubers use?

YouTubers use a variety of different video makers to create their content. We’re biased toward Biteable (of course), and many YouTubers agree. But no matter what YouTube video maker you choose, take advantage of the free trial to make sure it has the editing capabilities you need while still being easy enough to use.

The last thing you want is to spend all day figuring out complicated editing software. With the right tools, making amazing YouTube videos doesn’t have to be hard!

Make magic with Biteable’s YouTube video creator

If you want to skyrocket your brand’s visibility, YouTube is the place to be. And Biteable’s online YouTube video creator is the tool to have.

With  Biteable , you gain access to over 24 million stock clips, images, animations, and professionally-designed video scenes. Combine them with your own footage to make YouTube video magic.

Use Biteable’s intuitive editing tools to take your YouTube videos to the next level without a lot of effort. Record a new video clip, include on-screen text, or add a voice over from directly in the app. Use the brand builder tool to auto-brand your entire video with your company colors and logo. It’s that easy!

Further reading

Learn more about how to make a youtube video.

Now that you know the basics about how to make videos for YouTube, we bet you’re hungry for more knowledge. The Biteable blog is loaded with case studies, how-to articles, and editorials from industry-leading experts who know everything YouTube.

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The Beginner's Guide to Making an Awesome YouTube Video

Last Updated: February 13, 2023 Tested

Equipment & Setup

Ideas & planning, setup & recording, uploading on a computer, uploading in the mobile app.

This article was co-authored by wikiHow staff writer, Darlene Antonelli, MA . Darlene Antonelli is a Technology Writer and Editor for wikiHow. Darlene has experience teaching college courses, writing technology-related articles, and working hands-on in the technology field. She earned an MA in Writing from Rowan University in 2012 and wrote her thesis on online communities and the personalities curated in such communities. The wikiHow Tech Team also followed the article's instructions and verified that they work. This article has been viewed 2,007,108 times. Learn more...

Have you found yourself watching YouTube videos and thinking, "I can do this too?" If you're confused about where to begin, don't worry—it's easy to make a YouTube video. YouTube videos can be as casual or as high-quality as you prefer. If you don't want or need to plan out your video, skip to the end of this guide for simple instructions on uploading your video to YouTube. This wikiHow article will teach you how to plan, film, and publish a video on YouTube.

Things You Should Know

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Tip: Record more than you plan to use. You can edit out the extra bits later on; there's no reason to worry too much about getting the timing perfect from the beginning.

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