How To Make Professional Videos For YouTube (by yourself!)

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Creating YouTube videos on your own can be daunting, but figuring out how to create professional YouTube videos isn’t hard at all. Here is an easy walkthrough of my process!

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VIDEO: How To Make Professional Videos For YouTube

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So what MAKES a video look professional?

I don’t have a certificate of authority to produce youtube videos, there is no licensing process – you and I know that we’re all just kinda figuring it out as we go along.

It comes down to:

  • How it looks
  • How it sounds
  • What you say and how you say it

What we really want is to make professional videos for YouTube that make us look legit, sound legit, and keep viewers interested enough to keep watching and wanting more from us.

It’s not about the gear

We’ll get into lighting, audio, and editing, but first let’s talk about the one and only thing that matters when you create a professional YouTube video: your audience. The people who will be (or you hope will be) watching your videos.

If you’re delivering details on a topic they care about, and you’re presenting it clearly and giving value, you’re doing great! If people are watching (look into your YouTube analytics for that), it doesn’t matter a whole lot what your production value is.

If you don’t believe me, take a look at my early videos. They’re dark, quiet, awkward… but I was teaching something, I was delivering value to an audience who kept coming back for more. With poor production quality.

Related: Best Computers for Video Editing

Microphones for YouTube Videos

Audio quality can be one of the most overlooked aspects of making a professional YouTube video.

I’m not a perfectionist but I do want my videos to sound pretty good. I don’t want a viewer leaving a video because the audio sounds bad and it’s just too distracting to listen to.

Related: YouTube Ideas for Bloggers

This is the microphone I use, which connects to my camera. For voiceovers, I really like this podcasting mic. In fact, my podcasting mic probably sounds the best between the two.

For all of my YouTube gear, visit my Amazon Influencer page.

If you’re looking to up the pro-level of your videos, and you haven’t invested in an external microphone yet, I highly recommend it!

In this video, you’ll see that I’ve compared 4 different types of microphones so you can see the difference in quality.

Lighting for YouTube Videos

For lighting, I use these two soft-box lights. They are affordable, and I got them directly from Amazon. I went more into this in my YouTube Studio tour but lighting can be a tricky thing to get the hang of.

Cameras for YouTube Videos

I use a Canon70D for my YouTube videos, but there are so many camera options out there! If all you have is a webcam or a phone, that is totally find to get started making professional-looking YouTube videos.

What to Say in Your YouTube Videos

Once you’ve got your camera, a microphone, and you’ve figured out your lighting situation, you may be wondering what to actually SAY in your videos.

You can see what other YouTuber creators do, right? In this video, I opened up with an intro, introduced the topic, gave you a reason to keep watching (remember I said I had a warning about background music?), and introduced myself. Then, I got right into the content.

It’s really important that you plan out what you’re going to say in between all that into and outro “stuff”. Answering your viewer’s questions, knowing what they want to hear from you, and delivering your message clearly and succinctly. That’s going to do so much more for your channel growth than fancy gear, but it takes practice.

Like the editing process, which I’ll get to in a moment, it’s a creative process and it’s different for everybody. Scripting a video isn’t hard, but it can be touch staring at a blank screen, and so I created 3 fill in the blank scripting processes inside of the Video Pursuit Society so that the members don’t have to reinvent the wheel. But you can create the same thing for yourself.  

How to Edit YouTube Videos

This is a topic I have covered before, but once you’ve recorded your videos, you’re going to need to edit your clips and create the actual video file.

You can edit a professional looking video easily with pretty much any video editing software. I prefer Adobe Premiere Pro, I like Premiere Rush a lot, iMovie is wonderful on a Mac and LumaFusion and Premiere Rush are pretty great on iPhone and iPad.

Related: Video Editing for Beginners

It really doesn’t matter what software you’re using as long as you follow 3 very simple editing rules:

  1. Keep it snappy – keep it flowing, keep the viewer’s attention from wandering. There are some fancy techniques you can use here but for the most part, cut out anything that isn’t absolutely necessary for the viewer.
  2. Lower thirds and titles can be a distraction so don’t feel like you need to spend the time and energy putting them in. I re-use the same lower thirds on every video.
  3. Go easy on your background music. I love Epidemic Sound for background music, been using them for years, and I can hook you up with a free trial using the link below or go to But be careful about a couple of things:
    1. Lower the volume of the music. You don’t want viewers to have to strain to hear what you’re saying. The music is just there to enhance the message not to take over and be distracting.
    2. Please only use royalty-free background music in your videos. That means music that the copyright holder has given you permission to use in the form of a license. To avoid any legal issues I use Epidemic Sound for my background music, and I’ve never had any problems.

If your big roadblock right now is video editing, you should grab my Social Video Blueprint guide on creating and editing videos for YouTube and Social Media, which I’ll link to down in the description.

Like I said it’s a creative process, so it’s something you can learn and improve as you go. Which is why It’s important to still show up even if you feel like what you’re creating isn’t “professional” enough because no body did when they started, trust me.

If you want to learn about my non-fancy lights and affordable YouTube setup here in my home, you can watch that video right here.

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Creating YouTube videos on your own can be daunting, but figuring out how to create professional YouTube videos isn’t hard at all. Here is an easy walkthrough of my process!