Over the last decade or so, being a content creator has gone from being a hobby to a full-fledged career for many women. In fact, according to Brittany Hennessy, Senior Director of Influencer Strategy & Talent Partnerships at Hearst, content creation is a female-dominated industry. This is one of the few careers women can charge up to four times higher than their male counterparts. Given this, it’s understandable why you may be considering content creation as a profitable side hustle
But as with any saturated industry, for new creators to stand out you need to produce high-quality content for increasingly discerning viewers. Here are some basic camera equipment you’d do well to invest in:
The Best Camera for Your Needs
As display resolutions on our various devices continue to improve, poor video quality stands out like a sore thumb. On YouTube, the highest quality available is 1080p at 60fps or 4k, and many cameras can record in this resolution as well, so you don’t have to worry about buying an expensive model. There are several high-quality mirrorless cameras on the market today, which are capable of producing professional-quality images for entry-level prices. Models like the Sony Alpha a6400 are great options for beginner creators since it’s on the lower end of the price range but still has great autofocus, a flip-up LCD screen, and a higher ISO range. This makes it perfect for content like commentaries, story times, and makeup tutorials since the image will remain crisp and hi-def.
Meanwhile, another versatile option for those who want to shoot movement-heavy content (like fitness videos or travel vlogs) are action cameras. These tiny and light models can shoot POV content over rough terrain or underwater, too. The GoPro Hero6 is an example of a reliable action cam that can record 4k videos at 60fps, has a touchscreen display, and integrated voice control.
Tripods and Stabilizers to Boost Content Quality
How you are able to angle, frame, and stabilize your video can dictate how professional you are. A sturdy tripod is the classic choice since it’s accessible and adjustable. Lighter tripods can do the same job as a selfie stick in a pinch, and many vloggers opt for the Gorillapod since the flexible legs can easily be wrapped around an object to secure it. However, it’s best to do your research and see if your camera needs a specific support system. For instance, the iKan E-Image can carry most DSLRs up to 11lbs! Whether you go for a lighter or heavier model, though, find a tripod that has a fluid head so you can pan and tilt smoothly.
If you find that anytime you are shooting handheld, you may also want to purchase a gimbal. These stabilizers have motors and weights to counterbalance any movements you make. This is the secret to all those impressive free-running videos online. The great thing about gimbals is that you can even attach them to your smartphone and get better quality content than if you were to stabilize the device with just your hand!
A Crisp External Microphone
Your audio either makes or breaks a video. Some creators use the built-in microphones on their laptops, headphones, or cameras. But this method is not advisable since there is little sound mixing or noise cancelling capabilities. Instead, if you shoot more static content, opt for either an XLR or USB microphone. While the former is exceptionally durable and compatible with most professional-grade audio equipment, it can get pretty pricey. The latter, on the other hand, is lightweight, plug-and-play, inexpensive, and available in more aesthetically pleasing models. Among the most popular USB microphones are the Blue Yeti, the Razer, and the HyperX Quadcast.
However, if you’re more of the person-on-the-go vlogger, then a lapel mic is a smart option. Also called a lavalier mic, these are more discreet and can clip onto clothes or be taped onto skin. Since it works off a transmitter and receiver system, you can be recorded even from a distance—sometimes even as far as 100 meters.
The virtual world is ripe with opportunities for women. Robert Kyncl, YouTube’s head of business, has even said that he’d like to see more women creators on the platform. While what will ultimately dictate your online success is your message and personality, you do need to stand out with quality content. Whether you’re a budding beauty guru, skin-fluencer, fitness lover, comedy queen, or a Jane of all trades, there are people around the world waiting to see what you have to offer.