4 Buzzworthy Video Bloggers Worth Subscribing To

In 2009 I wrote about why video blogging hasn’t taken off (at least, not at the scale of text-based blogging). The essence of the thread wasn’t to bash video. Just the opposite, video is an exciting and dynamic medium:  if a picture says 1,000 words a video says 10,000. The thread simply shared some of the inherent limitations of video, such as:

  • You can’t scan video like text, making it not as quickly consumable
  • Video requires more time than text to produce, edit, upload & publish
  • Not as easy to quote from video as text (text is simply, copy-paste)
  • Video content itself is not searchable

With that said despite not taking off at the scale of text (YouTube says 50,400 hours of video uploaded a day – or “uploading hundreds of thousands of videos” according to the fact sheet vs. Twitter seeing 90 million Tweets per day and Technorati says 900,000 blog posts as just two examples of text), video continues to get hotter and does appear to be hitting a tipping point:

Data via YouTube

There’s thirst for this content too: ComScore is reporting upwards of 84% of internet audiences consuming video.

The stats paint the story of both increasing supply and demand of video content (both professional and amateur, for entertainment and business).

So who is doing it right from a video content perspective? I thought I’d share some of my favorite, buzzworthy video bloggers with creative shows.


Content archetype: commentary on pop culture, music and media

Purpose: to be snarky and point out the absurd.

Show name: Hate By Numbers

Sites published on: Cracked.com, Asylum, also published on YouTube

Community size: publishes various sites, but videos tend to attract several hundred thousand views minimum

Sample video link

Ray William Johnson

Content archetype: commentary on viral videos.

Purpose: share up-and-coming viral videos or help push undiscovered videos.

Show name: Equals 3

Sites published on: YouTube

Community size: 2,619,060 subscribers

Sample video link

Rand Fishkin

Content archetype: whiteboard explanations of topic

Purpose: help digital marketers become more successful, thought leadership for his company

Show name: Whiteboard Fridays

Sites published on: SEOmoz.org

Community size: 80,000+ RSS readers

Sample video link

James Rolfe

Content archetype: commentary on classic, bad video games

Purpose: make fun of poorly produced/hysterically bad games

Show name: Angry Video Game Nerd

Sites published on: GameTrailers.com, YouTube

Community size: 545,910 subscribers to YouTube

Sample video link

You’ll note the following about these shows/personalities:

  • All of them found a formula and stuck with it
  • Good video bloggers build community, take comments into the mix and engage with their fans. Ray who has – the 2nd most subscribed to channel on YouTube responds to fan comments across channels (he even responded to my Tweet).
  • Creativity and personality are key to video – even Rand who is talking about SEO (which some consider dry) makes it interesting.
  • They all take the time to make high quality content and are also focused on being interesting above all else.

Overall thoughts on web video

  • Video is not a one time event – you wouldn’t just create one blog post and be done with it. How does that build community?  It doesn’t – and that’s the point. Which is why it’s always a bit funny to me when companies try to make one video, push it to “go viral” and be done with it. That’s not how the web works for any content formats if you’re looking to build equity in the world and create an audience.
  • There is a lot being uploaded to video channels, so you’re going to have to work hard to stand out.
  • Likely you’re not going to stumble upon the right archetype for a show off the bat – but that’s the beauty of the web. Why not try a bunch of different stuff, fail like crazy and see what starts to catch on. Then refine as you go. Web content needs to be iterative, you shouldn’t bank so much on getting it perfect out the gate – rather focus on shipping. With that said, don’t sacrifice being interesting, useful or entertaining with everything you do.
  • Need more tips on video? I’ve written a post at TopRank blog discussing video content marketing (Lee Odden also does a great job with video here there, too).

As Skellie said – video is your chance to be a pioneer, and I agree. It’s an opportunity that’s out there for those with personality and willing to put it on display for the world to see. What are you waiting for?