Starting a YouTube channel is a task that many consider, but aren't entirely sure how to go about. It's certainly something I thought about for a while but never acted on. Well, today I want to share what I've learned in my first six months on YouTube and how you yourself can get started!
1. Find your niche.
Before starting a channel, it's important to determine what exactly you want your channel to cover. YouTube is an amazing platform that has space for just about anything anyone may wanna talk about. May it be gaming, vlogging, makeup, challenges, skits, or covers, there's a place for you on YouTube, and you have to determine what that place is. It's also important to consider if YouTube is the appropriate medium for whatever it is you're trying to do, as other social media platforms and even the traditional blog may be a better fit for what it is you want to share.
2. Watch other YouTubers for inspiration.
As with many things in life, it is never a bad idea to learn from others. As aforementioned, YouTube is a forum for many different types of people, so there's bound to be someone already producing the type of content that you want to participate in. Take time out to watch some of these other YouTubers and see what you like and what you may want to do differently with the subject matter. Always be open to observe and learn from those already doing what you want to do.
3. Establish your brand.
While YouTube being a hub for a plethora of people has its advantages, it also makes it easy to get lost in the crowd. It's important for you as a YouTuber to determine what your 'thing' is going to be. My online identity is that of "The Tea," and it's what I have established my brand to be. With a bit of text design and some Photoshop skills, I was able to create a logo to fit the brand that I wanted others to be receptive towards. While this is not a necessity at the very beginning, it will become important as your channel begins to grow.
4. Make that first video.
One of the greatest tips I can give is to simply stop thinking about the possibility of a channel and just make that first video. It can be an informal sort of "introductory video" or you can jump right into making content. Whatever it may be, the creation of your first video teaches you a lot about the mechanics of YouTube and how you want to operate as a YouTuber. Plus, it'll help you determine if YouTube really is the platform for you.
5. Know YouTube SEO.
Above I mentioned it's easy to get lost in the crowd of YouTube, so it's important to understand how others find you. YouTube operates utilizing a mechanic known as Search Engine Optimization (or YouTube SEO). It ranks videos based on certain attributes such as views, likes, comments, keywords, and tags. All of the aforementioned attributes fall under the umbrella of 'YouTube Mechanics,' so take the time to research and understand them for yourself so you don't become an undiscovered video in a sea of millions.
A newer feature on YouTube, content creators may implement the use of hashtags in their descriptions to allow another method for people to find their videos. Operating much as they do on other social media platforms, hashtags allow users to find videos utilizing specific tags. To use, simply type up to three hashtags when creating your video description and when the video is officially uploaded, they will appear in blue above the title of your video.
Being one of the first things your audience sees, the thumbnail can be the determining factor on if a potential viewer chooses your video over another. It is important to put time and creativity into your thumbnails and to utilize big, bold text that's easier for the common passerby to read. Below are a few examples of such thumbnails that I've created myself that capture the fun and spectacle of the videos they represent.
8. Most importantly: Have fun and be yourself!
Above all, the best way to stand out against the other sea of aspiring YouTubers is to stay genuine and be yourself! You won't get very far if you try to be like another YouTuber because they're already doing that. So, introduce the world to the bold and beautiful human being you are!
And that's really the tea on that.