You're a YouTube Rising Star

I’m so glad you’re here! Let’s dig in.

Oh hey there!

To get started creating great videos for YouTube, you're in don't need that much gear! 

In fact, with just a cell phone and some good ideas, you're off to the races. But, if you want to achieve better quality that everyone else, keep reading for more tips below including how to actually get your videos viewed!

What Gear Do You Need to Get Started?

Your YouTube Starter Gear

ps. I'm Colette

Nice to meet you!


Any camera will do. Use your iPhone or other smart phone, an old DSLR from a friend, or something you buy used. Or if you’re ready to go all in then get either a Canon DSLR (90D is good) or a mirrorless camera. I’ve used a variety of Canon cameras (great skin tones!) and the Panasonic GH4 and GH5 cameras (light weight and great for on-the-run shooting). But here’s the thing, get started with what you have, and then build from there.


Friend, this is where you’re going to need my Sound Buyer’s Guide. It’s down below. Linked for FREE. 


Get started with the sun. Film everything outside or next to a window. Then rent a few lights from a photo or video rental house to see what you like. From there buy one great light. That’s all you’ll need for a while. I always recommend buying one great light rather than a bunch of crappy lights. (I use two Westcott Ice Lights II, and I also use a Photoflex Softbox with either a tungsten bulb or a DayLight balanced fluorescent bulb.) 


YouTubers often use beauty light rings which create a soft look for the face. But, they also create weird light in the eyes and aren’t useful for anything except faces, so I’d only recommend that type of light if you’re a beauty vlogger. 


I don’t recommend staying on free editing software for too long. It’ll drive you bananas! I use Premiere Pro, which is the way to go if you’re not on a Mac. Mac users can go with Final Cut too. I’ve never used Final Cut, so I can’t say whether it’ll be awesome or not. I like Premiere because I buy it through the Adobe Cloud and get a ton of other programs that I need as a media creator. 


For video editing your computer should have 4-8 GB RAM otherwise it’ll be crazy slow. More than that is better. But you can get started with as little as 4 GB RAM. You just won’t be editing at lighting speeds. :) 

You’re also going to need a tripod and/or monopod with legs. For interviews that you’re running solo, you need to be able to put your camera on sticks i.e. a tripod. For keeping your shots stable when creating shot sequences, you’re also going to need some form of stabilization. I recommend using a tripod when starting out because this is the best way to learn framing. But if you're doing a skateboard channel or something with tons of action, then a gimbal is the way to go. 

What Should You NOT Buy?

Don’t buy lights until you’ve rented a few.

Don’t buy a DSLR with a fixed focal length lens. You’re probably going to need a zoom. So don’t drop $1000 on a 50mm lens. Not sure what I’m talking about? Not a prob, just make sure if you buy a DSLR that it comes with a zoom lens. When you’re starting out in video, you’ll need a zoom lens. (So if sale guy tries to sell you “prime lenses,” say no thanks!)

What steps can you take to get started?

» Get started with your channel! Plan what you want your channel to be about. Take a look and see if it's a highly competitive niche. See if there's a fresh spin you can give to the topic or niche. 

» Brainstorm a ton of video ideas.

» Then see what the competition on YouTube for those topics is like.

» Try using KeyWords Everywhere, which is a Google Chrome Extension to see what people are searching for in your area of interest. Make sure there's enough people searching for your topic every month to make it worth your while. If you search 40 topics in your niche and none of them get 20,000 searches per month, you're probably going to need to broaden or change your niche. 

» Then just pick a video topic and get started.

» Plan your video first. Create a structure that helps you get to the point of the video quickly. 

» Again, be aware, that in order to build your YouTube channel, you need to make videos on topics that people are searching for. And you’ll probably need to promote your videos and channel. 

» If you want “overnight” success on YouTube, you need to have a video that gets tons of views right out of the gate. Usually people do this by making a video that’s 2-3 minutes in length on a highly searched topic. They make the video ultra high quality and engaging. Then they share it via email to a big list of editors or writers of online blogs. Or they use paid ads to bring traffic to the video.

»YouTube and the 24-hour rule. Whether or not your video will get suggested by YouTube to other viewers depends on how your video performs in the first 24 hours. Your aim is to get over 40% viewer retention and as many views, likes, and comments as possible in the first 24 hours. 

Can you make money doing this?

Listen, I’m not the expert on this topic. I’ve never made money off YouTube directly. I make money creating brand videos and teaching. I also do online marketing. 

So, I’ve never done this myself, but here’s what I know from doing some research. 

1) You can start earning money with your YouTube channel with as little as 10,000 subscribers. Sometimes even less than that. As long as you have an engaged audience.

2) You earn money through brand deals, advertising (very little this way unless you have a huge subscriber base), and getting Patreon subscribers. If you can get 1000 Patreon subscribers for $5/month, then you’ve got yourself a full-time gig. 

3) BUT, the best way to make money on YouTube is to send people to a website where you give them a free gift in exchange for their email address. From there, you’ll be able to email them your new videos and interesting info. AND eventually sell them products and services such as courses, coaching, a book, a video series, etc. 

Living the Dream!

Get the Ultimate Sound Gear Buyer’s Guide


This Sound Gear Buyer’s Guide is a bonus lesson from the Epic Journey Online Filmmaking Course. That’s a 12-week course that’ll take you from beginner to intermediate. The earlier you can start practicing with sound the better. So take this offer while it’s still around! 

This sound guide isn’t specifically for filmmakers interested in making features. It's designed to help solo filmmakers get a handle on sound. But the sound principles will apply to anyone making films.

Also, I speak from experience when I say you should know at least SOMETHING about sound before hiring a sound recordist. 

This Sound Gear Buyer’s Guide is part of my Epic Journey Online Filmmaking Course. Get it for free.

What's Your Dream?

Are you a creative who's been dreaming of becoming a solo filmmaker?

Have you been dreaming of making films for a loooong time?

If you're here to GROW and LEARN, you're in the right place. 

Hi! I'm colette. Here to help you BECOME a filmmaking.

learn more about me here

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