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Progress Thread Growing a YouTube Channel

Discussion in 'Progress/Execution Threads' started by Fox, Jan 20, 2018.

  1. Fox
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    Fox Legendary Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR

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    Hey everyone,

    I have been snowed in at a hotel in Kazbegi, Georgia for the last few days with no sign of leaving so I wanted to start a thread I have been thinking of for a while. One regret with my original web design thread is that I didn't start sooner. It is nice when it is possible to see a progress thread from the very early stages.

    With that in mind here is my progress thread on growing a YouTube Channel.

    First off some background context:

    I didn't have much (hardly any) experience with making videos till about a year ago. I recorded a little when I was younger with skateboarding but these were just fun skate videos. I made one "sponsor" tape that consisted of having two video players and recording clips from one into one video on the other. :rofl:

    So in the last year I watched some free video tutorials on YouTube, took a great video course from my friend Thomas, and got some camera gear. I made a few practice videos in 2017 of traveling but I wanted to wait till 2018 to have a proper run at things.

    Camera Gear:

    My primary camera is a Sony A7 with 16mm, 35mm, and 50mm lenses. This is the camera I use for most of the cinematic shots within my videos. I am new to cameras but so far this has been great to use. The menu is super easy to navigate, very easy to use, and after a day or two it feels very simple to operate.

    I also got a proper mic that connects to this but the sound actually isn't that amazing. Still working on this. Good sound is a crucial part of having a video that is enjoyable for people to watch.

    Alongside the main camera I am using a Sony RX100 for the "vlog" style shots. It has a flip over screen that is great for seeing yourself as you film so you know what is in frame. Also a cool feature of this camera is super slow mo which is around 250 frames per second. It is really nice for some amazing video.

    Other cameras I use are a DJI Mavik drone and a gopro (4 I think!!?). The drone I use a fair bit but I have crashed two already so I am a little more cautious than when I first started! The gopro hardly ever. They are quite annoying to operate although the video can look really good when you go to the hassle.

    Editing:

    I am using premier on a mac. Really easy once you play around with it. Again I was a complete beginner with this but some courses and free tutorials later and I feel like I know a few tricks. Still so much to learn on this but I will pick it up over time I am sure.

    So that is the actual camera gear covered.

    ----------

    Actual Video Format:

    The aim of my videos is to inspire people to start learning web design, teach them how to sell their services and grow a business, and show them what its like to be your own boss. Web design is a cool job since you can work from anywhere and you don't need much equipment or set schedule.

    I don't see anyone making "cool" web design videos - there are tons of boring tutorials but they lack any character or fun. I am aiming for part inspiration and part education.


    YouTube:

    It seems a huge challenge with YouTube is just getting the initial traction. By studying a lot of other channels it seems once they break through to around 5000-10,000 subs they start growing a LOT faster. I think the main goal for any newcomer should be to focus on nailing the format for producing great content and growing that core audience first. Once you lockdown the basics and hit 5k subs it should start to grow itself quite naturally if your content stays high quality.

    Since I am so new I am still learning on creating a good format for each video. I have two general styles I like so far...

    Vlog/lifestyle style - this is like a short video that is more focused on what goes on behind the scenes. I am using a 4/5 minute format with a cool intro, talking mid section, and nice outro. This is a great format to start with since its fun to watch and also quite easy to produce. Since you won't be talking as much as other formats it means you don't have to rely as heavily on voice only content.

    Tutorials/talkative videos - these are actually surprisingly a lot harder to produce. You need to have a solid storyline/tutorial that can capture attention and keep it over 5-15 minutes. Usually these are going to be dialed in on a very specific topic. Since so much of YouTube is people searching for a topic the better you can match that exact search the better your engagement.

    Right now I am doing a bit of both and working on becoming a better speaker and also delivering as much value as I can in an engaging way. I feel like I know my topic really well but the challenge is in communicating that as best as possible.

    YouTube Hacks: Just like an system there are ways to improve you odds at success. Youtube has a bunch of different ways to improve engagement. These can be clickbait titles, the thumbnail pics, using video tags, channel tags, getting views to do an action (like/comment), running competitions, and much more.

    So far I haven't been focused on this too far. I don't want to have some clickbait style channel and ovetime people usually will drop off if your content isn't delivering. Better to start small, make great videos, and improve your content while your channel is still small.

    One thing I have been playing with those is the video tags. I will do a full post on this soon since there is a lot you can do here to improve your videos performance.

    At the end of the day YouTube is just a platform and your main business should be your primary focus. That being said it seems to allow for a lot more natural growth in a short amount of time compared to Facebook and Instagram which I think are now primarily pay-to-play platforms. For those who manage to crack YouTube it is an amazing way to get your message out there and engage with people.

    I will update this thread as I learn and grow my channel. If anyone else here is doing the same please feel free to join in also.

    Some samples of my content so far:

    Vlog style:


    (travel style)


    (travel/behind the scenes style)

    Tutorial:


    (shorter format)


    (long format)

    Any questions or suggestions - please let me know, thanks.
     
  2. SinisterLex
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    SinisterLex The moments that define you have already happened. Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR

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  3. Iammelissamoore
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    Iammelissamoore Silver Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED Speedway Pass

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    Haha, agree with SinisterLex, lol, your vlogs are super cool, the fact you are doing the vlogs along with the tutorials encourages consistency, which I've recognised is important.

    Keep up the great work, super interesting.
     
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  4. Fox
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    Lol, thanks Lex. The first few videos have been mostly travel but I won't be always using that format. I think for Feb I will be doing a lot of sales content instead.
     
  5. cmor16
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    cmor16 Gold Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass

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    Looking forward to this! Learning HTML and CSS is the easy part.
     
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  6. Van Halen
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    Van Halen Bronze Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane Speedway Pass

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    As an unbiased comment, the vlogs are really high quality. Seems like the same standard someone with a massive following would have, really nice. As a side note didn't realise you were a Brit!
     
  7. Andy Black
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    Agreed. (Although Fox is Irish.)

    Great videos @Fox. Really inspirational and different from the usual web tutorials.

    How many subs do you have on your channel at the moment?


    Possible sneaky tip with channels is to make up your own tag and tag all your videos with it so hopefully one of your own videos shows as the next suggestion. I tried that with my own videos.

    Also... I think there's an option when embedding videos to not show another video at the end of your own. Might not work embedding into the forum.

    I'll shut up now as I've only a handful of subscribers and videos myself. Will let the YouTube heavy weights give better advice.



    EDIT: Whoa... I've not really done videos in over a year. I didn't realise I had 275 subs and over 100 videos on YouTube. Some videos have over 1k views too.

    I also think YouTube is a great channel. I might get back into my Snapchat ways... it was fun doing those low production vlogs and ramblings.

    Following your progress with interest @Fox.
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2018
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  8. minivanman
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    It doesn't really have anything to do with your question per se but I'd like to share my friend's experience with Youtube. All of this he made public knowledge as it was happening so I am not telling any secrets. So he started making videos about 10 years ago, he worked at 7-11, mowed lawns on the side and LOVED to work out. So he started a channel talking about working out. Then he added lawn care. His baby-momma left him and left their 2 daughters with him. He got custody of the 2 girls.... they were really small when she left, maybe 1 & 3, something like that. So his channel became all about lawn care and he quit his 7-11 job. Taking GREAT care of his girls/mowing/Youtube... that's all he did. His daughters ALWAYS came 1st. As his daughters got a little older they liked being in the videos with him. Some lawn care guys in his area didn't like him and started making his life hell on Youtube so he deleted his Youtube lawn care channel but his daughters wanted to continue making some type of videos. So he started them a channel...... My GOD!!! Did that thing take OFF!!! Millions of subscribers and millions of views for EVERY video. They made 2-3-4 channels... something like that. They started making the big bucks from Youtube. He quit lawn care, they moved in to a nice new house.... life was great..... until last November..... Youtube took down their channel because they said he was making his daughters make the videos and basically using them as an income. That is not true.... they make good grades in school, he never mis-treats them and is one of the best dads I've ever seen. Now I will say this.... the videos were stupid but other kids loved them and the girls loved making them. So that is his Youtube story. Maybe the moral of the story is.... take what you can while you can because you never know when it will be gone. Always have aback up plan. As for him.... he LOVES mowing grass so he will probably go back to mowing or figure out a way to start another channel. He was in talks with Youtube the last I knew.
     
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  9. DanWasDrunk
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    Me too. I just started a YouTube channel and I feel like I'm wait late to the game.

    Your videos are pretty good. They're super high quality and I think you have a great niche there with web design. I'm actually doing something similar with reviews, as far as trying to make them educational, but entertaining:


    View: https://youtu.be/lU04VkNNlk4


    (I'm trying not to plug since I'm new to the forum, but it might just be easier to see what I mean.)

    A lot of review videos out there are just straight education -- which I get -- but that can also get really boring. I would suggest you aim for a subtle balance of both. Some feedback I got was that I went a little too far for comedy and to tone it down.

    The name of the game is just basically pumping out content on a regular basis and optimizing your traffic. Definitely ask for some feedback, especially online, and then adjust. Friends and people you know in real life might be too nice or they'll just say, "Yeah, that's pretty good. Good job!" Which isn't that helpful.

    A couple things I noticed:

    The first thing is, your intro in the "how I got started" video was super long. I actually skipped ahead to see you talking because I got bored after a while. And don't get me wrong, I love drone footage, but the attention span on the web is super short. This is just an editing issue and you'll learn how to balance it and play around with that as time goes on.

    I'm not saying don't milk that drone, though. You'll get a ton of subscribers and traffic just for drone footage, so definitely keep shooting that. A LOT of channels that I subscribe to, the viewers are only watching for the drone footage and asking questions about it.

    Also, with the web design tutorial, I would look at "let's play" gaming videos, or other tutorial videos. They usually have a facecam -- a tiny little box of their face -- in the corner. That way, we're not just staring at a screen and hearing a voice. It brings a little more entertainment into it. Just something to think about.

    What kind of mic are you using? It sounds like a shotgun mic. I was using a $200 rode attached to my DSLR, but just recently bought a $25 lav and, honestly, it sounds great. For the stuff that you're doing, which is similar to me, I think a lav would suit you well. It really isolates your voice and tones down that background noise. I'm releasing a video later this week where I compare my rode and lav. Watch it if you're interested -- maybe I'll throw it up if I don't get in trouble.

    Not saying you can't use a shotgun mic, but I was running into a lot of frustration because I was constantly hearing that my sound was bad from viewers (I made a couple comedy sketches before this channel), yet I was trying everything to optimize my rode and get good sound quality. But I just wasn't getting it. Finally, with the lav, it sounds pretty good. If the shotgun mic isn't on a boom pole, but is mounted to the camera and the camera isn't very close to you, your sound isn't going to be great no matter what you do. The camera or other background noise will drown some of it out.

    It also might just be playing around with your sound in post. I'm not an pro and definitely not one in Premiere, but play around with some of the effects like dynamics and compressor/limiter.

    Absolutely! YouTube just changed their monetization requirements and a lot of people got really pissed (to be fair those people were only making pennies anyway). But this is why you don't want to solely rely on any platform like YouTube, Facebook, or Instagram. It's their system, so you have to play by their rules, and they could change everything tomorrow without warning.
     
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  10. Fox
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    Thank you.

    Thanks, I still only have a few but its great to see people already following along.

    Ya I have been checking out the seo score within YouTube. Adding end video links, title cards, and a lot more can really help the video rank well. Still picking this up.

    Thats unfortunate. I wasn't exposed to much/any social media growing up and I am glad I waited till late 20s to start. I think its not great for people to be using while still in their formative years.

    And ya YouTube is just a platform - keep Fastlane principles in mind.
     
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  11. B. Cole
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    Not a web designer here, but I’d watch for your drone footage alone :thumbsup:

    Excellent job man!
     
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  12. Fox
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    Fox Legendary Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR

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    Thanks and welcome to the forum. Some good points - thanks for writing this up.


    Thank you, I had some issue in Georgia though where the drone started only flying around 10 meters away. I still managed to make it work to get some good video (I think!). Seemed to need another update or something. They are the most temperamental thing I have ever owned.
     
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  13. Arrived2015
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    @Fox
    From what I've watched and read so far, I'm sure you'll hit your 5k subscribers sooner than you think!

    I'm not a YT channel creator however do watch many a YT vid and I suggest you check out Vidiq's product (chrome extension or direct install on your channel - Vidiq.com) so that you get a behind the scenes peek with any YT vid you watch.

    The FREE version should meet your needs of seeing stats on :
    • views per hour
    • social mentions (like Twitter, Reddit LinkedIn)
    • SEO (was end screen/cards used)
    • video and channel tags used
    • estimated earnings and other stuff
    After installing, when you upload your vids, it recommends keywords to rank your vid, suggested trending vids to include in your vid tags and has an SEO 9 point checklist and of course more stuff not for me to list here.

    Had it installed for a few years now and interesting to see how and what a YTuber has done to get me to view! Not forgetting me being nosey with their earnings *wink*

    Also check out Social Blade( .com) website to see your ranking on YouTube, Twitch, Instagram, and Twitter! Gotta have something to look back on on where and how far you've come one year later innit? Certain you'll have moved up the social ranks this time next year.

    It also gives the Who's Who's in which YT category and their ranking. Seeing who's in the top YT 50 or 100 or 500 Tubers and using the tags they use or seeing their hidden stats, may get you ranking quicker me thinks. After all why else would they be in the top ranking? Surely modeling them can be the way to go???

    As a head up, If seeking to montize further down the road your YT channel with adverts, note that on Feb 20th 2018 as a starter with a YT channel, you'll need:

    1,000 subscribers + 4,000 watched hours (240,000 minutes) to qualify for adverts on your YT vids

    Meaning? One without the other is a no go!

    More here on this new ruling is found on the YT blog here:
    YouTube Creator Blog: Additional Changes to the YouTube Partner Program (YPP) to Better Protect Creators

    As said above though, I'm certain you'll smash that YT qualifying requirement x2 in no time AND your 5k minimum subscriber target!
     
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  14. Roberto Zanon
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    Roberto Zanon New Contributor I've Read UNSCRIPTED

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    Very solid effort brother, and definitely, high-quality content there.

    The key here, as you would probably know, is consistency.

    So keep it up, and update us as well :)
     
  15. TKRR
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    Thanks for posting. Looking forward to see how it goes for you. I've recently decided to try and revamp my youtube page. I have essentially figured out how to grow an instragram page, but I'm fairly clueless on the Youtube front. I know I need to make higher quality videos, but the actual content is pretty good. Also, I've never been consistent with it, and only have maybe 35 videos up over the last 7 years and therefore only 38 subscribers. So my goal is to try and get to 100 subscribers in the next month or so, and see how it goes. Would be nice to get to 1000, though at this point, I'm not quite sure how to make that possible.

    Something I read the other day that made sense to me was that on YouTube, like other social media platforms, you have to make your content for the YouTube users, not for everyone else. Sure, we all use Youtube, but there are people that spend the majority of their time on YouTube, and that's the audience you need to make happy. So it takes understanding how the community works to really make moves.

    Good luck! Looking forward to seeing how it goes for you!
     
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  16. Fox
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    Thanks for the encouraging feedback.

    I got vidIQ and have been using it a lot - it will definitely help.
     
  17. Fox
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    Fox Legendary Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR

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    So next video is up...



    So this video is a little different and has zero to do with web design (kinda). I am starting to put together a video portfolio that hopefully later in the year I can combine with my web design skills to be able to offer more services.

    This was shot a few weeks ago when I got stuck in Kazbegi for a few days. I am trying to see if I can get it to rank really well for a few specific Keywords and be a case study for future video work I am hoping to offer combined with web design.

    I am new to video but since I feel like I am maxing out my direct web design income (hard to go over 20k a month without scaling the business which I dont want to do) I want to be able to offer additional services. Hopefully in the future I can offer web, video, photos, branding, and also some copywriting.

    This girl is a good friend of mine and also does some modelling so it is that style of video. Over time I hope to have a wide video portfolio that includes company, commercial, personal, and destination. Just like a website portfolio you want to be able to show you are capable of creative solutions.


    For Feb I will be switching again and doing a lot more tutorials. I did a lot of travelling in Jan but Feb will be more of a work month so my content will mirror that.
     
  18. sebastian chavez
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    Great Thread @Fox, Your content is providing me more value than you know for web design and video production.

    I'm also trying to grow my YT Channel. I'll be following this thread.
    Thanks...Good Luck
     
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  19. Xavier X
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    Nice video, Fox. A few tips on the Georgia one:

    Audio: For the voice over, when recording material like that, try not to script it completely.
    Instead, list a few things you would like to touch on and just deliver it.

    Visuals: When shooting scenes like 0:40 - 1:05 try not to shoot against the light, if you're not going for a silhouette effect. Some parts work, like 0:49 - 0:52. However, 0:44 - 0:47 for instance neither works as silhouette nor integration of subtle natural lighting.

    Overall, nice video. Keep shooting!

    That said, now tell me more about this friend of yours. :cool:
     
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  20. Fox
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    Thanks for the feedback. Ya first time doing a post production voice intro so I will work on those.

    I decided the best way forwards form this point is to bring in a posting schedule.

    "LIVE Mondays"
    I will be going live for 30 mins to an hour answering whatever questions people have.

    "Beginner Tuesdays"
    I will cover a topic to help those starting off. How to get a first sale, how to price etc.

    "Sales Wednesdays"
    Specific selling techniques for bigger sales. These will build upon beginner Tuesdays.

    "Business Thursdays"
    How to grow, scale, and everything about the business side of things.
     
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  21. Fox
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    Thanks man, want to post your channel up here?
     
  22. TKRR
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    Thanks for the tip on vidIQ! I just set it up and tried some stuff on a few videos. Curious to see how it goes. I saw a lot of "SEO" problems. So it will be interesting. Cheers!
     
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  23. Fox
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    So this is an example of my new format...



    Trying to aim for something I can do daily and that has a huge amount of value.

    I need to work on lighting - looks quite over exposed.

    Also trying to shorted down the video length and make sure not to ramble. I think I was fine on this video but still something I always want to be working on.
    Screen Shot 2018-02-06 at 15.09.32.png

    First time I got a tag ranked which is a good start and now over 300 subs too. Hoping to make it to 1,000 as fast as possible so will be doing nearly daily content for the next while.
     
  24. Fox
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    So have been doing a lot of research on the platform and seems like there is a "100 Rule"...

    Screen Shot 2018-02-07 at 08.31.22.png

    I think it is more like 1,000 subscribers but this is a good goal to aim for starting off.
    I have noticed a lot of channels get massive traction once they get over 1,000 subs and start to quickly move towards 100,000 subs.

    So I will keep this updated from now on each month:

    >>> Current Goals <<<
    Videos

    Goal: 100
    Current: 7
    Subs
    Goal: 1,000
    Current: 312
    Views
    Goal: 100,000
    Current: 4,628
    Watch Time (minutes):
    Goal: 500,000
    Current: 22,760
     
  25. Andy Black
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    Andy Black Any colour, as long as it's red. Staff Member Read Millionaire Fastlane FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR

    Messages:
    5,698
    Likes Received:
    23,615
    Joined:
    May 20, 2014
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Ireland
    Rep Bank:
    $136,575
    One video a day eh? Nice goal. The other numbers will come as a by product.

    Maybe I'll try and do a video a day again.
    EDIT: I've just created one and uploaded it HERE.


    Here's my current stats:

    upload_2018-2-7_14-44-35.png
     
    cmor16 and Fox like this.