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How to Hit The Jackpot With Your YouTube Channel

How to start, grow, and monetize your channel

Dayana Sabatin
Jun 11, 2020 · 9 min read

If you’re someone who has been thinking about starting a YouTube channel, now is the time to start.

Currently, there are thousands of YouTubers making a comfortable living off their videos. Let’s not include the ones making millions. We’ll save that for another day.

To kick things off, you need first to eliminate everything that you THINK you know about YouTube. Unless you have done your research, you probably don’t know much that is actually feasible.

If you feel shy or nervo u s that you won’t get any subscribers or views, it’s okay because you most likely will not gain many subscribers nor views when you first start out.

Your YouTube success will most likely be a slow process, but once you gain some traction, you will notice positive results.

Why I Started A YouTube Channel

I started my channel as a way to broaden my horizons. It sounds tacky, but I had been blogging for about a year at that point, and I felt like I was restricted. I wanted to share videos about my life, and I wanted to share tips, ideas, how-to videos, and creating a YouTube channel seemed like the perfect way to go.

When you want to learn something, do you read about it or watch a YouTube video?

Chances are you said the latter.

Instead of having to scroll through the fluff to find the information that you want, you can head on to YouTube and search for what you need. You’ll get dozens of results, and the answers to your questions in under 5 minutes.

So ask yourself, why do you want to start a successful YouTube channel?

Do you want to share your life? Grow your blog? Provide value to others? Maybe you’re into fashion, and you want to help others learn how to style their clothes.

YouTube is the perfect space for you. The best part? There’s room for everybody.

How To Start A Successful YouTube Channel

Being a YouTuber is understood and accepted now as a career choice as opposed to years before. It’s booming now. And if you think the platform is too saturated, you couldn’t be more wrong.

Some people have been on YouTube for 10+ years, and they have gained and continue to achieve major success. You could start your 10-year journey right now.

I’m not saying your first few videos will be phenomenal; in reality, your first 50 or so will suck.

I refuse to watch the first video that I ever posted. However, I also refuse to take it off. Why? It’s an excellent way to remember where I started.

When you’re starting, you need to scale back your expectations on what it means to be a YouTuber. That goes for anything.

You might think that all YouTubers do is post a video twice a week then enjoy the rest of their days living in their mansion and drinking their overpriced matcha lattes.

That’s pretty far from the truth.

In reality, youtube takes a lot of work. Creating a video takes time. It takes me a day to film, a day to edit, and it takes hours to load it up to YouTube.

Don’t forget you also need to create a custom made thumbnail that is both inviting and appealing to your audience.

When you start a YouTube channel, you’re essentially starting a business, and there are many things you have to take into account. Things like taxes may not even cross your mind because all you want to do it create content.

Yes, creating content does have to be your main goal, but you do need to take into account that there’s more to the game. If you’re determined to be a successful Youtuber, and you’re willing to take on the other responsibilities that come with being a successful YouTuber, then this is the game for you.

Figure Out Your Niche

I’m sure this thought will already have crossed your mind by the time you decide to create your YouTube channel. However, it’s important to acknowledge what your niche will be.

A niche is what will make your channel unique. When finding a niche, you’re looking for a subset of a genre, subject, or topic to make videos about. Your niche can be as broad as you want, like a lifestyle channel. Or, it could be as focused as you want, like only sharing videos about food.

Whatever niche you decide to choose, stick to it. When you do so, you’re essentially telling your audience, “this is what I am here to share with you, this is what I know well, this is what you will receive from me.”

What Value Will You Provide?

No matter what niche you’re in, your content has to provide some value to others; if it doesn’t, your channel will not be successful.

This means you either need to create content that will inform, instruct, or entertain others.

Don’t overcomplicate it, value can be as simple as providing your audience with a healthy recipe, showing them a DIY, entertaining them by sharing your life, you get the point.

Defining your brand’s purpose is the first step to developing an emotional as well as psychological bond with your audience.

Think about every video you create and how it will provide people with value. If it’s a boring and mindless video with no purpose, create a new and better one.

Branding Your Channel

YouTube is a search engine. People go on YouTube and constantly search for things.

If you want people to find you, it’s probably a good idea to incorporate your name in your channel title, and if you choose not to, you might regret it.

When you start a business, you want to be tied to it. You don’t want it to have a name that resembles someone/something else. You want it to be yours.

Your Action Plan

What do you already have, and what do you need to start your YouTube channel?

Whenever I tell myself, I’m going to start working out more, and I immediately search for new workout clothes or new trainers.

People like to make goal-related purchases. They feel like it makes it more real, more serious, and easier to attain.

There’s nothing wrong with buying a camera, a planner for your content, a tri-pod, whatever you feel is needed, however, if you aren’t able to make those purchases right away, don’t allow it to stop you from starting your channel.

There are plenty of YouTubers that started with only using their iPhone cameras.

They’re just as good as a fancy one.

If you start now, you’ll be able to purchase the fancier one down the line, and you’ll have accumulated an audience by that point.

Don’t let materialistic things hold you back. However, create an action plan. Plan to save money for the things you need, find an affordable tripod.

Do what suits you best but have a plan that will get you from point A to point B.

Figure Out Your Uploading Schedule

Don’t try to upload a new video every day, instead pick the days you’re going to upload, schedule the video in YouTube Studio and make it non-negotiable. Make it so that you always upload on the same days and at the same time.

Consistency is what will help you grow a lot quicker.

The algorithm will know what days and what time to push your videos out to people, and your current subscribers will know when to expect content from you.

Learn SEO

Just like Google, YouTube has an algorithm that they run all of their content through to determine which video is the best to recommend to somebody.

Why? YouTube wants to make money.

The longer someone stays on YouTube, watching videos, and seeing more ads, YouTube will make more money, which is why YouTube will pick the best videos that will make them the most amount of money.

Learn about keywords, what are people searching for on YouTube? Is it 6-minute ab exercises? Is it how to cook a vegan-friendly dinner in under 30 minutes?

Never skip out on your descriptions. When writing a description for your video, it’s best to implement what you’re saying in the video into the actual description for the best optimization.

You can learn SEO on YouTube, on Google, or pick up a book, whatever suits you best, but it will be in your absolute best interest to pick up the necessary tactics for SEO.

Set Goals

Figure out your goals for the 1st year and what steps to take to reach that goal.

Don’t be crazy, be realistic. Don’t set a goal of reaching over 100k subscribers within your first month or even year. I’m not saying it’s impossible; I’m saying it’s better to be realistic because not seeing those results could make you drop off.

You will go through many trials and tribulations as a YouTubers. It’s going to take you time and effort to learn what works, what doesn’t, and what you need to improve on.

The most important thing is to stay consistent, continue improving your videos, continue providing valuable content to your viewers, and get discouraged if your numbers don’t go up at the rate you would like them to go.

Learn Filming + Editing + Utilize Other Platforms

Unfortunately, if you truly want to be a successful YouTuber, you can’t just pick up a camera and film anything and throw it on YouTube.

You need to pick up a few skills.

There are hundreds of tutorials you can find online that provide you with basic knowledge on how to create a good video. Find them and watch them despite thinking you already know the ins and outs of it.

You can learn to edit as you go. However, if you’re using editing software like Final Cut Pro, you’ll end up wasting more time trying to figure it out rather than just googling it.

It took me hours to figure out how to add text to a video. Don’t be like me. Google it, or better yet, look up a tutorial for Final Cut Pro on YouTube.

Another incredibly important thing is to figure out where you will promote your videos and build your brand.

If you want to grow an audience on YouTube, utilizing other popular social media outlets can help you grow faster.

Start by identifying other social channels you think your desired audience uses. A few examples would be:

  • Instagram
  • Facebook
  • Pinterest
  • Twitter

Become well versed in what videos and stories are currently trending and what is getting the most shares and likes. By studying these sites, you can then identify what your culture is seeking and actively viewing. With this data, you can model the content.

How Do You Make Money?

We’re getting the to the good stuff now.

How do you make money on YouTube?

First, you need to be monetized.

Monetization requires over 4,000 watch hours and at least 1,000 subscribers in the last 12 months. Then, you link your Google Adsense account and get paid when someone clicks on an ad or watches your video for more than 30 seconds. Typically, you get a few ads in the video, and the amount of money you get from these ads will depend on a variety of factors.

Besides ad revenue, YouTubers can make money off a variety of income streams such as:

  • Sponsored content
  • Live tours
  • Affiliate links
  • Merchandise

Just like with anything else that you start, your focus should not be on the monetary gain. In your early days as a new YouTuber, you should be focused on building your reputation and audience rather than your income.

Google pays out 68% of their AdSense revenue, so for every $100 an advertiser pays, Google pays $68 to the publisher. The actual rates an advertiser pays varies, usually between $0.10 to $0.30 per view, but averages out at $0.18 per view.

Around 15% of viewers, on average, watch the requisite 30 seconds of a video ad to count for payment. This means that for 1,000 views, 150 people are likely to watch an ad. At $0.18 per view, Google will charge the advertiser $27, keeping 32% ($9) themselves. The YouTube channel will receive $18 per 1,000 views.

Focus on building your brand, reputation, and audience, and the monetary gain will come on its own.

Final Word

The only thing that is holding you back is you. Self-doubt, thinking your videos aren’t good enough, thinking you’ll never reach a certain number of subscribers or views is what will bring you the most harm.

Utilize these guidelines, learn everything you can about succeeding on YouTube, prepare yourself for success, and that is what you will get.

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Currently, there are thousands of YouTubers making a comfortable living off their videos. Let’s not include the ones making millions. We’ll save that for another day. To kick things off, you need…

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