This answer here is nothing.
Anyone who knows me will at some point of heard me say the words “I’m going to give this Youtube thing a go and start vlogging, you just can’t say enough in a Tweet”. Well it’s been well over a year and I’ve still not posted one video. Yet.
See I love diving into challenges, I love doing new things and experimenting, but there is one thing with YouTube that actually scares me. One thing that makes me doubt whether starting out on YouTube is the best way for me to go.
“Is YouTube at the point where no-one can find anyone new?”
It’s something that has been on my mind for a while, and it doesn’t just apply to YouTube, Twitter suffers from the same problem. This weekend I’ll be attending the Lincoln YouTube gathering and will have the chance to meet up with some of my awesome friends who I don’t get to see all that often. They’re a very creative bunch and no doubt I’m going to return home with a huge amount of energy to get my face in front of a camera.
I’ve recently been helping out with the new TALK channel that my good friend Bing has started and one of the recent questions was “How to get seen on YouTube” and this is what spawned this post.
You see to me, getting yourself heard is one of the main reasons that people start making videos in the first place, fame and fortunes come to those who make it big on YouTube… kind of anyway. To me, I don’t want to start it for that, to me, I just want to be heard. To do something that makes people engage and get involved with, and maybe, just improve someone’s day.
The conversation on TALK shows how those who have already got a decent following on YouTube do things, which was insightful, but it didn’t really help those who haven’t. This is where my original point comes back into play, YouTube themselves are now getting so many hours of video every second uploaded to their service, that how, in that minefield, is anyone new going to get heard. Is making decent quality media enough any more?
The quality of what you upload certainly seems to help, if you’re vlogging then make sure you have a ‘pleasing on the eye’ environment to film in, your camera is mounted and not shaking, try to write a script first and have a definite line of direction for where you are going with things. It’s all these little points that make up a great video that people are happy to sit through and watch.
Let’s not get carried away though, I’m not talking about going out and spending £1000 on a new camera, your webcam will do just fine and you do not need a fancy computer either, it’s more the quality of the content and editing that seems to be the defining factor here.
Having a good designed channel layout also makes users feel more at ease, more like you know what you’re doing and that you belong in their subscription lists. Take some time to think about relevant ways to show off your channel. Logo’s are a great way to give your videos a sense of ownership and allow people to spot them out of a crowd.
The better the quality of your content, the more chance you have of someone who has stumbled upon your video is likely to share it with their friends, and that is where you will gain attention.
In context here, I’m am not telling you to spam the lovely people of YouTube who have subscribers with your links, nor in the comments either. I’m talking about your own friends.
Facebook and Twitter are fantastic tools for getting your media out there. Posting a video on your Facebook timeline with the ‘public’ security setting will allow friends and friends of friends and friends of their friends (do you see where I am going here?) to see when people ‘like’ it and from there, share it on. It’s actually amazing how quickly a video can bounce from timeline to timeline once a few people have started sharing it around. Make use of the open tools you have available to yourself. If you want your ‘fan base’ to start anywhere, the best place to start is with your nearest and dearest. After all, if you aren’t proud enough of the video to share it with your friends, it’s probably not good enough for prime time just yet.
I’m still going to dive right on in, sonner rather than later, I’m probably more determined to now than I was when I started writing this post. I’ve managed to convince myself single handily in writing this article that it’s a challenge I want to take and it’s not something that should be seen as a negative to any huge media platform.
The thing is, I love taking pictures and filming video, but for me, that’s not the challenge, the challenge with starting YouTube is working out what the content is I want to film. Whether that be sketches, vlogs or something completely different. It all requires a huge amount of planning, and sometimes a cast, which I don’t have a huge access to where I know live.
So for now, I’m going to aim to do something I can do on my own; vlog. It’ll be scary, fun and exciting all at once and I’m looking forward to the ride.