Talking Head Video Tips for YouTube & Podcasts

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Creating talking head style YouTube videos and video podcasts is one of the easiest, most streamlined ways to create video content. But before you just crack open your laptop and hit record, you should know some of these talking head and video podcast tips. Because if you’re publishing videos to grow your audience, to build your community, and drive leads and sales to your online offers, your videos are the first impression that can kind of make or break all of that happening for you. I’m Meredith, and this is part of my Crush it on Camera series. I’m here to help you look good, sound good, and feel good on camera, because I believe everyone can create pro looking videos that grow your audience and your business with YouTube.

Watch the video: Talking Head Video Tips for YouTube & Podcasts | CRUSH IT ON CAMERA

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The Power of Audio

The most critical aspect of any video is its audio quality. Regardless of your camera or microphone, clear and crisp audio is non-negotiable. Whether you’re using the microphone built into your laptop, or a high quality external microphone, follow the manufacturer’s instructions for optimal placement to prioritize audio in your recording setup. So do you have to have a professional setup to build your audience in your online business with YouTube? No. But if your talking head videos come off as difficult to understand or follow, or they’re sort of half baked and not edited very well, what does that say to your potential clients, students, and customers who are finding you on YouTube for the very first time?

I put together the free Crush it on Camera guide for you for this exact reason. This is your guide to creating pro looking videos that grow your audience with ease. In the guide I give you some ideas about how to configure your recording space, your YouTubicle, as I like to call it, and to make upgrades as you grow or just use the gear that you already have.

Lighting Magic

Contrary to popular belief, your audience is more forgiving about your background than you might think. Proper lighting can make a significant difference. Use warm, soft lighting to create a flattering look, and avoid overhead or recessed lighting. The Elgato key light is an excellent minimal setup that delivers quality results. When well-lit, your background becomes less noticeable, letting your audience focus on you. For a blurry background effect, consider investing in a camera with a quality lens.

Related: Crush it on Camera 4: YouTube Studio Lighting Setup

Framing Matters

Achieving the right balance in your frame is crucial for a professional-looking talking head video. Use the rule of thirds to position yourself, aligning your eyes with the top third line. This simple yet effective technique enhances the visual appeal of your video. Check out video number 2 in the Crush It on Camera series for more tips on framing and presentation.

Related: Crush it on Camera 2: YouTube Studio Camera Setup for Talking Head Videos & Podcasts

Viewer Engagement Tips

There are some common pitfalls seen on smaller channels that can hinder viewer engagement. Avoid looking at yourself in the screen on your camera instead of at the lens, as it can make your videos feel disconnected when your eyes are darting between the lens and the screen. Maintain a comfortable distance from your background to keep it from becoming a distraction. When you set up your YouTubicle, try to move yourself as far from your background as you can.

I also recommend paying attention to the volume of your background music. When you’re talking in a talking head video, background music is great. I love background music. I use Epidemic Sound for my background music, but I always aim for the volume to be too low versus too high. Bring your volume way, way down and edit your videos with headphones so you can actually hear whether your volume of your background music is too high or not.

Scripting your videos is a smart approach to keep your content focused and engaging. I put a graphic in the Crush it on Camera guide to help with the structure of your videos. But in general, know what you want to say before you start trying to say it. Know what you want to deliver in your video before you hit record. Avoid overexplaining what the video is about at the beginning. Just get into it right away. And always send your viewers to another video on your channel at the end of your video.


In the world of YouTube, where first impressions matter, creating standout talking head videos is key to growing your audience and online business. By prioritizing audio quality, mastering lighting techniques, framing your shots effectively, and engaging viewers with thoughtful content, you can grow your audience and bring revenue to your business. And when it comes to making videos on YouTube to grow your audience, building a library of binge worthy videos is the most powerful way to do that. And I have a video explaining exactly how to come bingeable on YouTube so that you can attract new viewers and new subscribers with every single video you publish. So, follow these tips, check out the Crush It on Camera guide, and start creating videos that truly crush it on YouTube.