Is YouTube better than blogging? How to determine which way to go?
Videos are all in buzz nowadays. There is a huge demand for video content to be filled in the digital landscape, and it’s getting filled. But YouTubing is not for all, neither blogging is.
I’ll help you decide whether you need to go with blogging or YouTube in your digital marketing career.
Whether it’s blogging or video creation, one crucial skill that is very much needed is communication.
Blogging demands excellent written communication skills. Whereas, video creation requires verbal communication skills.
Among these, you need to ask which one comes naturally to you?
If your answer is both, then that’s great! But find your dominant one.
In my case, I consider myself a good communicator. I started my digital journey with blogging. I tend to create more high-quality content when I have ample time to sit, think and ink – which is in case of blogging.
In late 2019, I took this #100DayYouTubeChallenge where I challenged myself to create 1 video a day for 100 days. I did this because, although I am a good verbal communicator, when in front of the camera – my mind would go – “bla…blank”.
I get it, some people hate recording themselves and publishing on YouTube (shyness, privacy, or whatever the reason is). Some other people are extreme extroverts, they hate sitting at a place and typing in the content.
That’s why you need to know yourself first. You can begin by taking a simple DiSC personality assessment.
If it turns out that you are an influential or dominant personality, video creation may be well-suited for you. In video marketing, camera presence and opening up and maintaining high energy levels are important. Do keep that in mind.
If you are interested/expert in a specific niche, you need to ask yourself – “Does my audience like blog content or video content? If so, what percentage of them like text over video?”.
As it turns out in the digital marketing niche, more and more people are preferring video content.
As a side note, not all of them like both the formats. Some people who are highly visual in nature like video content, and some others like text content.
Both formats of content have their own benefits for the end audience.
- In case of text content, people will be able to consume information at their own pace, go back to the previous section, make connections between the topic. Reading text content promotes conceptual learning. This is why people love reading books instead of videos or Audible.
- In case of video content, it promotes cognitive ease. Your readers will be passive content consumers. But it leads to experiential learning. According to many research studies, multi-sensory learning leads to more comprehension and internalization.
You need to see what your target audience likes.
One easy way to determine that is by just Googling some of the most popular keywords in your industry and see what type of results predominantly come up.
If the search results are full of videos, you’d be better off with videos in your niche. Because the search results often reflect the preferences of the audience of the niche.
It all comes down to analyzing demand-supply curves in your industry. If there is a good demand for video content, you’ll get traction more quickly than blog content.
When you are creating any form of content, you need to create a detailed outline.
Once the detailed outline is ready, start writing/recording your content.
After your content is created you’ll do the editing part. In the case of blogging, you have the ultimate editing freedom.
But in case of video editing, although you can delete the parts, add jump cuts, add animations, etc. the grammatical or the presentation mistakes are hard to correct (although I don’t worry about them much).
Due to this reason, many people script out their entire video and then hit that record button. But I won’t suggest you do this as the video turns out to be detached and unnatural.
When it comes to content delivery, it’s easier to create that direct eye-to-eye connection with your audience in case of videos. The trust will be easily established by being “you”.
But in the case of blog content, although you can add formatting, images, embed videos, the humanistic touch will be lacking. It makes video content well-suited for building your strong personal brand.
Both these platforms require you to publish consistent high-quality content to succeed. Because it takes time for Google to trust your blog or your YouTube channel.
But generally speaking, with YouTube it’s quite easy to get views as there’s a lack of video content in many niches.
By researching a niche where there’s a lot of demand for video content and there’s not enough supply or vice versa – you can succeed fast. Getting the supply-demand mechanism right and making the formula work for you is the name of the game.
Before giving up on any of these platforms, you need to publish at least 100 pieces of high-quality unique content, that fulfills a big demand.
Effective keyword or topical research is very essential to come up with high-demand content ideas that you can easily rank for.
Organic growth (blogging or YouTube) is a macro game. Don’t be driven away by numbers in the initial stages. I would advise you to focus only on content creation and promotion in the initial months – that’s it.
In the case of blogging, you’ll be making use of the WordPress platform and in the case of videos, you’ll be on YouTube.
When it comes to your self-hosted WordPress site, you’ll have the ultimate freedom regarding monetization, design, implementing advanced marketing, doing split testing, and so on.
You’ll have complete control, and your website feels like your home.
On the other hand, YouTube is a property owned by Google. You have little control over the content you upload on YouTube.
And also, your content needs to abide by the community standards set by YouTube. These guidelines may sometimes be controversial in some niches as reported by many publications.
It’s also more common for top YouTube creators to feel that they’re at the mercy of YouTube.
For example, what if someday in the future bans their channel? What if they ban affiliate links in their platform? Or continue hiding the descriptions in the name of SERP video overlays? Or encourage people to watch only a part of the video – thru suggested clips?
In blogging, you can leverage many monetization options like contextual ads, affiliate marketing, sponsored content, many more. Blogging offers superior effectiveness and flexibility of these monetization strategies.
For example, when it comes to ad placements, there are virtually endless places and possibilities to experiment and see what works well for your audience.
In the case of YouTube, you can earn money from YouTube ads (only after your channel is quite popular), affiliate marketing, selling your own products/services and also sponsored content. Other than Google AdSense, you can’t make use of any contextual ad networks with YouTube.
One great benefit is that with blogging you can monetize your popular blog posts by going back, editing them and adding some CTAs.
Whereas, in case of videos, you don’t have that flexibility as you can’t replace your videos and also YouTube’s video editor is weak.
If you are starting with either of these, you need to be well aware of the expenses to be incurred.
When you consider blogging, all you need is a domain name, hosting, and some premium plugins (optional). A domain name and hosting together would cost you around $70/year, that’s it.
In the case of YouTube, you don’t need to host your videos on your own. Your videos will be stored and served over YouTube’s own servers.
All you need is a smartphone with a good camera and a mic. You need to also have a good video editor app. But, in order to really grow your channel, down the lane you need to invest in a professional camera, lighting, studio mics, professional video editor softwares (like Premiere Pro or Da Vinci Resolve).
I would say that the costs of both starting a blog and a YouTube channel is pretty much the same.
I would say when you compare blogging and YouTube, there’s no clear winner. Because, the answer depends upon various variables like your niche, your strengths, and your audience requirements.
Both of these platforms have their own upsides and downsides.
If you have enough time and resources on your end, I would advise you to both leverage text and video content formats to attract a large number of audience to your funnel.
If you are a well-established blogger with a lot of blog posts, it’s time for you to start repurposing those blog posts to YouTube videos and embed them in your blog posts.
Or, you can even consider repurposing your videos to blog posts.
I would say, going an omnichannel approach is the key to success.