DJ Vlad is a hip-hop journalist with a list of rapper friends and acquaintances whom he interviews for his YouTube channel. Using the journalism format under a YouTube channel can be a lucrative way to become a force to be reckoned with in any journalism field.
His YouTube channel has more than one million subscribers. There are traditional methods that every journalist should use, but when it comes to interviewing and telling stories through YouTube, vloggers can find out a lot from Vlad.
1. Have guests that viewers become familiar with.
DJ Vlad is not the type of journalist who waits for one major interview with a subject and leaves it at that. He surrounds himself with a familiar cast of characters, and interviews are an ongoing conversation with them. Vlad has guests like Charlamagne, whom viewers are interested in.
Keep interviews loose and build an environment of interesting, opinionated people. This will help build your personal fanbase outside of your interviewee’s followers.
2. Make animated shorts.
DJ Vlad’s channel isn’t the only channel to utilize interactive animated shorts to connect with viewers. Animated shorts take work, but there is a reason why other music YouTube channels like Pitchfork have used animation as a way to draw in more viewers. Cartoons make storytelling simpler, and all great journalists are storytellers.
Learn how to animate or find a friend who knows how and is willing to collaborate. When you work together, enticing journalism will unfold.
3. Incite controversy.
There are tasteful ways to go about asking interesting guests about topics that may be seen as controversial. It’s important to create a space for the interviewee to vent, rather than feel provoked to say something controversial.
Vlad’s guests sometimes seem eager to make statements that are likely to ruffle the feathers of the average viewer.
The point of the journalist is to help others tell great stories. Shape the interview and turn subjects into the interesting people they never knew they could be. Everyone has a story to tell. Help them spread their word. Give them the platform they need. By watching DJ Vlad’s insane interviews, vloggers and aspiring journalists alike can gain great tips on how to succeed when having a YouTube channel.
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Will Randick is a blogger and educator working out of the Bay Area.