Should You Start A YouTube Channel In 2020? – My First 50 Videos
YouTube is an amazing, confusing, and sophisticated tool that allows creators, side hustlers, and entrepreneurs to post content for free. Let’s just reflect on that for a minute. YouTube, the second most popular search engine in the world behind Google, posts any amount of videos you want for free.
It doesn’t matter if you post a dozen videos or hundreds, 5 gigabytes or 1,000 gigabytes. YouTube is a free marketing tool that can put any creator or business owner on the map. This is why I believe a YouTube channel is and will continue to be, a great thing to include in a business plan or just a creative plan.
As you are going to see, it’s not all about the money but rather, growth. You must create growth first and if you have a worthwhile product, the money will follow.
In this article, I want to tell you why you should start a YouTube channel in 2020, take you through the analytics of a YouTube channel with 50 videos, and run you through my plan to grow my YouTube channel.
That is quite a bit to cover so let’s quit wasting time and get into it.
Why You Should Start A YouTube Channel in 2020
If you own a business, do something interesting, or want to help people on a specific problem then you should start a YouTube channel in 2020. No question about it. Starting a YouTube channel was something that I always told myself I wanted to do but could never build up the courage to actually start.
Some people think that YouTube is oversaturated with creators or their customers won’t watch YouTube videos.
Both of these claims are dead wrong. Every year hundreds of new creators start on YouTube and every year quite a few of those same people have success.
When I started making YouTube videos, I recorded with my iPhone X and a $10 lavalier microphone. The quality was terrible but the point and bottom line is that I was creating. Fifty videos later and I can proudly say that the quality of my videos increases every time I post. Some videos my editing gets better. Other times it’s the delivery of my message in that particular video. I know I won’t ever be perfect but the practice gets me closer with each video.
The point is to get better every single time and provide as much value as I can to my viewers and subscribers.
It’s been proven that if you are patient and deliver value over time, then subscribers, views, and all of the other fancy metrics will start to take off.
A Small YouTube Channel’s Analytics
Most of you came to this article to see the analytics of a new-ish YouTube channel so let’s dive in. As a forewarning, they may not seem impressive but I believe this is the reality for most people starting out on YouTube.
Is there going to be some anomalies? Absolutely.
Am I going to bet on me being that person that has incredible growth on any platform? No way. I’m a realist.
Do I wish I was the next Casey Neistat, David Dobrik, or Roberto Blake? No doubt! Who wouldn’t want to make a career from creating things you enjoy? Whether that be entertainment, tech reviews, or tutorial videos, value can come in many different shapes and sizes. You just have to find the audience that needs/wants it.
Views and Subscribers
The number most people want to hear is how many subscribers do you gain when you post 50 YouTube videos? The answer?
Over the last 7 months and 50 YouTube videos later and I (only?) have 86 subscribers. This is a fantastic number for me. Seriously I’m stoked that even one person has watched my videos and then chose to subscribe to listen to me talk about personal finance and money management. If you’re one of those people, thank you for your support and time.
When it comes to views, the channel has just over 4,000 at the time of this writing. I’m going to warn you now there is going to be a common theme in this article. That theme is that I’m psyched about the numbers the channel is showing. Totally shameless excitement.
Anyway, 4,000 current views and as you can see from the graph, those numbers are growing every single day. Something that I’ve noticed about my analytics on YouTube and on Google search is that my numbers will stay steady for a couple of months then there will be an obvious increase or jump.
What I mean is that instead of a constant upward curve they tend to stair-step up to the next level. I believe what is happening is YouTube is putting me in front of a new audience via the suggested videos and seeing if I bring them value as well.
This value is measured by my click-through rate, watch time, and retention rate. Stay tuned, I’ll explain these metrics.
Impressions and Click Through Rate
Impressions and click-through rate is where a channel can take off like a rocket. For those new to the game, impressions are the number of times someone scrolls past your video. Sometimes that is when they search for something specific on YouTube or when your video shows up on the suggested sidebar while watching another video.
Click-through rate is the percent of times your video is clicked on when someone is shown it through an impression. Having a click-through rate of 5.4% is amazing. For comparison, this blog has a click-through rate of .8%. Not my best number but it works and it’s improving.
I would love to reflect back on this article in a year to see my click-through rate still at 5.4% but I know the chances of that happening are slim to none. If that were to happen, the math shows that my channel would have to have a couple of thousand subscribers in 2021. Remember how I said I was a realist?
Returning back to reality, to have a good click-through rate you really need to dive into having good thumbnails and titles. Does this mean you need to be somewhat clickbaity at times? Maybe. Once you get a person to click on a video you better hope that video delivers the value you promised or they will immediately click somewhere else, which can hurt you.
Here are two of my thumbnails. The left is when I started making YouTube videos, the right is now.
Am I a great graphic designer when it comes to making YouTube thumbnails? Absolutely not but things are getting better. Again, that is all we are aiming for.
Watch time and average view duration is the statistic I am most happy with. In the chart below, you can see that people (actual humans) have watched my content for 229 hours!
That’s 13,740 minutes!
How is that even possible?
It is hard for me to wrap my head around so many people listening to me talk about a sometimes boring topic, which personal finance is. I think this number really highlights how powerful a tool YouTube is and again, it’s free!
I had all these potential customer’s attention for 229 hours. Imagine a channel with 1,000 subscribers or 100,000?
How Much Money Have I Made On YouTube?
Many people start a YouTube channel to make money. Nothing wrong with that by any means. I honestly think it is a pretty smart move. As I told you earlier, YouTube is the second most popular search engine in the world so why not put your content there and get paid?
I haven’t done much of that though. In fact, so far from advertisements on YouTube, I have made exactly:
Yes, that is right. I have not made a dime from ads on my YouTube channel. There is a caveat though; you can’t run ads on your YouTube channel until you have 1,000 subscribers which I obviously do not. Hopefully this year I will hit that magical number but for now, it is all about putting my head down and creating more content.
That being said, I have made some great money from my YouTube channel. While it is true I haven’t made any money from ads, I have from other sources. In fact, I made $600 from a single YouTube video and that was by affiliate marketing. If you want to see that video, make sure you are subscribed to the Young, Dumb, and NOT Broke?! YouTube channel.
I’ll share with you every detail of how I made that happen.
My Plan To Grow My Small YouTube Channel
The plan to grow my small YouTube channel is to double down and work. That’s basically it. I never started making YouTube content expecting the ability to become extremely popular overnight and honestly, I wouldn’t want that.
What I do want is to build a business and a reputation. I want to be known as the channel that has helped hundreds if not thousands of people make better financial decisions. Taking the stress out of managing your money so you can focus on things that are more important like actually living and enjoying the living.
Will all of my content get hundreds of views? Probably not.
But if a video helps even a single person, then it is a win. I have the same attitude when it comes to posts on this blog.
I would be lying to you if I told you I wasn’t doubling down on what my analytics told me as well. For instance, I often look at the chart below.
This chart shows me my most popular videos and all of the numbers behind them. These are the videos that have been put on the suggested sidebar or found when a person searches for something on YouTube.
Since these videos have proven they have an audience, I’m going to make more content explaining the topic of the original videos. Not just one video though, dozens of videos.
The last piece I’m going to focus on is keeping my click-through rate as high as possible. That means learning more about photoshop to improve thumbnails and doing more research to improve SEO.
A combination of all of these factors will help me grow my small YouTube channel.
The Bottom Line
YouTube is a great tool and I will be eternally thankful I started posting content there. My only regret (everyone regrets this) is that I wish I would have started earlier. If I could give anyone advice on starting a new YouTube channel it would be this:
No matter what you do, someone out there will always think it is ridiculous, dumb, or not realistic. That is their opinion and if you believe in yourself, your content, and your mission then go for it. What is it going to hurt to try?
No matter what happens to the Young, Dumb, and NOT Broke?! YouTube channel in the future, I will always view it as a success. Taking the risk to put your content out there for the public is a difficult thing to do. You open yourself up to criticism and some nasty people.
What you also do is allow yourself to share your message and help people. It doesn’t matter if you are showing yourself playing a videogame or helping people learn how to change their oil.
There is an audience out there that YOU are providing value to.
I hope this article convinced you to start a YouTube channel and take the leap. I’m glad I did and I think you will be as well.
With that, here’s to the next 50 YouTube videos and beyond!
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