If you are reading this article, the chances are that you are already creating content for YouTube and are looking to increase your subscriber count.
If you are making your own logical assessment of the situation, it would be understandable for you to question our credentials before following our advice. Admittedly, we aren’t high-level YouTube content creators but don’t click away just yet – the art of making videos for YouTube has a few specific quirks, for sure, but in many ways, it isn’t so different from any other creative endeavors.
Furthermore, it can sometimes be difficult for those who are fully immersed in a specific environment to observe and assess that environment from an outsider’s point of view.
Your current aim is to attract new people – those from outside your current circle and environment – to your channel, therefore you need to be open to outside opinions if you are to achieve your goals.
We don’t claim to know everything, but here are a few simple steps you can take to ensure you have the best possible chances of reaching new people with your content:
Plan Your Content
So, you’ve just had an idea for a new video project and are eager to get to work – what should your first steps be?
It might be tempting to just get straight into shooting video, but proper planning could enable you to get the job done in a fraction of the time.
You should start by researching the topic at hand, make notes, plan an outline of the stages of the video, and ask yourself if you could save time whilst also making your video look more professional by using stock footage.
YouTube Specific Adaptations
Whatever topic you are intending to tackle, you are unlikely to be the first person on YouTube to do so. The free availability of content on YouTube is one of the best things about the platform and makes it easy for you as a creator to see who has made successful videos about the subject in the past.
Is the topic popular? Are shorter videos more successful than long ones when discussing this particular topic? What thumbnails and titles have proven popular with viewers?
And when was the last time this topic was spoken about in detail – is there a lot of new information for you to discuss that hasn’t made its way onto YouTube until now?
Viral videos from two or three years ago are unlikely to be completely forgotten, but if nobody has discussed the same topic recently, you may have an opportunity to provide a worthwhile update on the subject.
Ask yourself what the other creators did well, how you could improve on their work, and check out a few pages of the comments – how recently were people discussing the subject? Is there current interest? All the answers you need are available, you just have to go and find them.
Hardware & Equipment
Most creators will film their first few videos using nothing more than their smartphone, but as soon as you begin to earn money from your work it’s worth considering how you could improve your work by spending some of that cash on dedicated video equipment.
A great camera will often make the biggest difference, but it can also cost a huge amount of money. If you aren’t bringing in enough revenue to justify the expense of a DSLR, there are plenty of cheaper options that will have a noticeable effect on the quality of your content.
A dedicated microphone is a perfect example – a high-quality external mic can be bought for just $100, and the difference in audio clarity is almost certain to be noticed immediately by your viewers.
Faster storage such as an external SSD could help to speed up your editing procedure, whilst simple accessories such as tripods or gimbals punch well above their weight in terms of their cost-to-benefit ratio.
It’s perfectly understandable for you to feel nervous about showing your face in your videos but doing so will almost always create a more professional result than creating a voiceover only.
If you are intending to be on camera, be sure to look your best and treat the camera as if it was another person that you are talking to. Look directly into the lens like you would another person’s eyes but try not to think of yourself as a presenter or as being part of a show – you are just having a simple conversation.
There is plenty of free software available that will scroll your script at your preferred pace, and you should definitely look into using such a tool to ensure that your dialogue comes across naturally.
If you are still nervous, there are plenty of videos out there which will teach you how to be confident and comfortable on camera – watch them, pay attention, and apply the advice next time you hit record.
This is just the beginning of a long road, but if you put in the effort to keep learning and mastering your craft, you can get there. We wish you the best of luck!