7 Gears and Gadgets for Digital Content Creators (No Marketing Software or Tool)
Would Sherlock Holmes be the greatest detective of all times if he didn’t have Dr. Watson by his side or could Tintin have heroically saved the day if he didn’t have his trusty sidekick Snowy to help him along?
Whatever the adventure you are on the path of, it is always important to have a sidekick to ease the journey and get the most out of it. Similarly, every professional also needs a few trusty gears to help them achieve their best in their field. And today we will be speaking of the must-have gadgets that every digital content creator connected with the digital realm should invest in and always keep handy.
The digital technologies bring people from obscure corners of the world together. So, what do you think is the most important requirement of being a professional in the digital world? You have guessed it right. Connectivity!
In order to succeed as a digital content creator, you have to be connected to the grid at all times, keep abreast of all the goings-on, and always be relevant to your audience by connecting with them through social media and other online outlets. So, it is needless to say, a few basic gadgets are required in order to achieve the connectivity more efficiently and seamlessly.
Technology is advancing by leaps and bounds every year and thanks to it, being connected to the world has become easy and effortless. There are a ton of gadgets present in the market to choose from, but it can be a little baffling for a newbie. So, to help you guys out, I am going to list the gadgets that you absolutely must-have and carry as a digital content creator in the internet-connected world.
1. A Powerful Smartphone
You guys must be thinking that I have gone crazy for even suggesting it because who in this time does not own a smartphone. Well, I guess everybody does own one nowadays. But is your smartphone capable of doing all the professional things that you want to execute on the go?
Your smartphone should be capable enough to help you take notes, write blog or text content, edit images and Instagram videos, connect you to your clients, and should have a good quality camera for live streaming or an impromptu photo-shoot. It should be an assistant to your work and a valid workstation when you are on the road.
Most of the time people think that a good smartphone means a good camera. But if you are a digital content creator, maybe a vlogger, Instagramer, YouTuber, or a content marketer your smartphone should have a powerful processor and RAM with a long battery backup apart from having a built-in high-resolution camera lens to help you complete most of your content creation jobs without any lag on the go.
Smartphones are small and handy and if it has all the features mentioned in the above paragraph, then you are always connected and won’t miss out on any opportunity whatever your location may be.
2. A High-Resolution Camera
Images and videos always play an important part in any form of content marketing. And to make your content looks good and appealing, you have to make sure that they are of good quality and high resolution.
With the advent of budget DSLR (Digital Single-Lens Reflex) and Mirrorless cameras, this particular goal is achievable now without shelling out a lot of money. Depending on your requirement, you can buy cameras but make sure that it has features like face-tracking, optical zoom, image stabilization, and auto-focus for quality video capture. In addition, it should have good in-built connectivity for easy and fast data transfer.
If you are a one-man crew and you need a camera reliable enough to operate without someone standing behind it while recording, then go for compact cameras that are small, light-weight but do not compromise when it comes to the quality of the picture or video. Especially for a beginner Youtuber or Instagramer, I would recommend Canon SL2, Canon G7X, and Sony A6600 budget cameras.
These few mid-range cameras could be your starting point and then you can upgrade to more high-budget cameras like Cannon’s 5D and 6D series according to your requirement.
If you are a vlogger, then once again a compact camera is necessary like Canon G7X or Sony RX100 VII. If you want to become an outdoor vlogger, especially a travel content creator, you may consider having an action camera like GoPro Hero and a drone for taking aerial shots.
If you are skeptical about investing money in a camera right out of the gate, then you can skip it and easily buy a smartphone with a high-quality camera that can capture video just as easily as a DSLR. Furthermore, you can check external mobile lens kits for powering up your smartphone’s built-in camera lens significantly.
The main goal here is, you should get a high-quality image and video output. And for that, you can buy any decent camera or smartphone that fulfills your needs without breaking the bank.
3. A Microphone
For a digital content creator, a camera is incomplete without a good quality microphone. The audio is an important aspect of any video and podcast, and it needs to be crisp and clear to make them an all-out success. Though many cameras have in-built microphones, they are always not powerful enough to record good quality audio.
So, a microphone is a must-have in your kit, especially if you are a podcaster or vlogger. It acts as an add-on to your camera and amplifies and enhances the audio captured. There are various types of microphones digital content creators use and available in the market. Probably the most popular being Rode’s go-on camera shotgun microphone and Blue Yeti USB mic. These are perfect for YouTube, outdoor vlogging, and are personal favorites of many well-known YouTubers.
A microphone can also be used as a standalone setup for creating podcasts which is another rising star when it comes to content marketing. Besides, if you are a voice-over artist or record voice-overs for your videos, a complete audio recording setup with stand, amplifier, and mic in your personal studio is what you need for creating great audio contents.
If you do not have the budget for an add-on microphone or amplifier setup just now, then a good alternative option is a lapel mic (Lavalier microphone). It is small, easy to carry and costs a lot less than a full-fledged microphone setup. You may just need to have an application on your phone, camera, or computer that allows you to capture the audio from the lapel-mic and voila! You have a good quality audio track to go with your video or to air as a podcast.
4. A Good External Webcam
If you are a digital professional then you have to connect to your clients from all around the world and to do that, of course, we have Skype to help us along. An external webcam in these cases is a real handy gadget. Webcams are mostly built-in especially on laptops but if you have a desktop PC or a laptop with a low-resolution webcam, then investing in an external decent quality webcam is a must.
Skype calls with clients as well as remote meetings and webinars are made easier if you have a high-spec webcam. It’s a necessary add on for your home-office setup. It can be used for live streaming as well if you don’t have a camera or a smartphone within your reach.
5. External SSDs and Hard Drives
Safekeeping data is an essential job along with everything else. Equipment like a PC, laptop, or camera cannot be always trusted to keep data safe. To ensure that whatever happens, your data is always protected and accessible, an alternative portable storage solution is required.
An external hard drive or an SSD (solid-state storage device) is a perfect gadget to do the above job. They are small, portable and can store huge amounts of data and thus must always be kept handy. Based on your content creation frequency, volume, and type you can go for high-end hard drives for faster data transfer among multiple devices. For example, YouTubers or vloggers, who work with big-size raw video footage, would need hard drives or SSDs with a lot of storage capacity and maybe sometimes more than one.
Along with hard drives, carrying extra SD cards (Secure Digital Memory Card) for your cameras is also advisable. You can record any length of videos without the fear of running out of space.
(A pro tip: Carry an extra pair of battery for your camera as well. You never know when they run red and ruin your entire plan. You may also consider carrying a high capacity power-bank that can transfer some power juice to your dry devices. So, always carry an alternative power source.)
6. High-Resolution Ultra-Wide Monitor
A high-resolution ultra-wide monitor is a beast for graphic designers, YouTubers, vloggers, and any content creator who dedicate most of their time in editing, enhancing, and rendering images and raw video footage. These not only give you more monitor real estate to work on but also produce high color accuracy which is inevitable in graphics and video editing.
Besides, ultra-wide monitors allow doing multi-tasking without using your PC’s Alt + Tab (or Mac’s Command + tab) keys repeatedly. Naturally, this enhances your performance and increases productivity.
If you are a Mac user then you are set because Apple monitors are always on point when it comes to quality and resolution. And if you are a PC user, you have a lot of choices to pick from. A wide-screen, LED-backlit or a 4K screen variation is now available from almost all well-known brands.
Of course, these are not typical budget monitors, these high-spec ultra-wide monitor screens cost really high. So in case, you are a newbie content creator with a tight budget, you may think of building a dual monitor setup to utilize more screen real estate and improve your overall performance without hurting your pocket.
7. A Powerful Laptop
A good desktop setup is well and good but it has its limitations. Most importantly, portability. We are digital nomads, we simply cannot lug our PC everywhere we go. Just imagine, you are sitting with your bulky desktop PC at a shiny golden sand beach. How terribly odd it looks even in your wild imagination? So, to remedy this situation you need a laptop that will be as powerful as your desktop and gets the job done easily and efficiently irrespective of your location.
While buying a laptop, make sure that it has the latest processor, a big enough RAM (8GB or more is suggested) and a GPU powerful enough to run software like Photoshop, and Adobe Premiere Pro like butter. Also, it should not lag if multiple applications are open at one time on the screen.
A laptop is a trusty piece of hardware, and if chosen correctly it can help you doing everything you want irrespective of your location and workspace. So saving money on this may lead you to compromise with your job and quality.
So, there you go guys, all the important gadgets and equipment that you need as a professional digital content creator. Hope this list helps in your ventures as well.
On a side note, another thing that you must buy for your convenience and portability is a sturdy backpack to carry all your gadgets in one place without any hassle. There are many present in the market especially catering to professionals who work with the above-mentioned gadgets and having all the necessary bells and whistles like separate compartments and cushioned interiors to keep your costly gears safe and cozy.
Now over to you. Let us know what type of devices you use being a digital content creator. Also, tell us if you want to change any of your current gadgets or purchase any new product that you think will help you to streamline and expedite your content creation job.
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