5 Things I’ve Learned After Making 200 YouTube Videos
Over the weekend, I published a new video on YouTube. That might sound pretty mundane seeing as I do this approximately once a week — but, a day after posting, I learned that this particular posting wasn’t as routine as it seemed. Instead, unbeknownst to me, I had just reached a milestone: publishing my 200th YouTube video (which I learned about thanks to VidIQ).
Funny enough, this comes only a few months after I reached another milestone, hitting 10,000 subscribers. So, while I celebrated that accomplishment by looking at how I go about making my review videos, I thought I’d mark this occasion by sharing just a few of the lessons I’ve learned from now making literally dozens of videos for the platform.
5 Lessons I’ve Learned While Making YouTube Videos
Consistency really is key
I know it’s insanely cliche to say — but, seriously, being consistent on YouTube truly is one of the most important factors. Personally, I’ve aimed at putting out a new video once a week for the past couple of years at least. I’ll also admit that I’ve fallen short of that goal many times before. In fact, as luck would have it, the 200th video I uploaded was one I produced quickly in an effort to catch back up to my schedule.
With that said, despite my shortcomings, there’s no doubt in my mind that maintaining this constancy played a huge role in my channel’s growth. What’s more, if I didn’t have a planned schedule, you can bet I never would have made it to 200 videos! Therefore, if you do want to do YouTube as a side hustle or job, I’d 100% recommend creating a schedule and being as consistent as possible about keeping it.
Find your ideal process
While nailing down a schedule for your posts is key, it’s equally as important to figure out a process that works for you. As I’ve noted before, my videos now mostly follow a format that sees me introducing segments on camera while doing voice-over for the rest. Honestly, this was a decision that has ultimately saved me time and frustration as I simply cannot spout off a full script to the camera without error. Speaking of scripts, figuring out the best way to structure your videos and then “filling in the blanks” for subsequent content can really be helpful.
One process tip that I’ve seen time and time again is the idea of batch shooting. Basically, instead of sitting down and shooting one video at a time, shoot three or four and then just edit them for release to meet your schedule. Admittedly, while I love this idea in theory, it’s one I rarely use in practice (unless I’m prepping footage before going on a trip). Still, I do think it’s good advice overall — so there ya go.
Lean into what works, but don’t be afraid to try new things
Building a YouTube channel is kind of a strange premise, isn’t it? Somehow, it’s up to you to give people what they want before you know what that is or who those people really are. However, as time goes on, those questions will hopefully begin to answer themselves as you can see what types of content does well for you. When this happens, you can then lean in and follow the format that’s working. In my case, while you can see that many of my earlier videos are kind of all over the place, it became clear to me that reviews were going to be my bread and butter — hence why they make up the majority of my content. Still, in an effort to not stagnate or grow bored with my own videos, I do regularly mix things up, albeit in selective ways that I think still fit the larger brand of the channel.
Incidentally, Video #200 itself was a bit of a departure from the normal. See, for a little while, I was creating videos I called “Quick Tips” — which, as the name implied, were even shorter than my normal content (and perhaps would be a fit for YouTube Shorts, but that’s a topic for another day). Sadly, this format didn’t seem to catch on so I scrapped them… only for me to miss covering the topics these Quick Tips allowed me to talk about. So, for this past video, I decided to essentially take what might have been a few quick tips and package them into a round-up of sorts. I’d actually tried something a bit similar to this a few months ago and it seemed to go over well enough to give it another shot. While the jury is out on whether this particular idea will make the cut long-term, it’s still always good to try something new. At the end of the day, it’s your channel, so do with it what you want to.
Give viewers more to watch
One of the best things about building a YouTube channel is that, at some point, you’ll have a sizeable library of content that can 1) keep gaining views 2) keep making you money and 3) keep bringing in new subscribers that will then see your new videos. Luckily, YouTube does a fairly nice job of helping you spur this cycle by giving you a number of tools. The two I use the most often are End Screens and Cards.
In short, both of these allow me to link viewers to other content I’ve created that I think would be relevant for them to watch next. With Cards, I might share a link to an older video I happened to reference in my script or, with End Screens, I can direct them to a playlist or video that’s related to the topic.
And speaking of playlists, this is another great way to direct viewers toward other videos of yours. For example, I have playlists compiling my various credit card reviews, banking reviews, travel tips, etc. What’s great is that you can then link to these playlists in the aforementioned Cards or End Screens. If you’re not already using these, it may take some time to get them into shape — but I definitely believe it’s well worth it.
Since I started with a big cliche, let me end with one as well: keep going. To be completely honest with you, when I first started with YouTube, I didn’t really foresee myself getting to 10k subscribers — let alone making 200 videos! And, yes, there have absolutely been challenging times and setbacks that made me wonder if it was worth it. Well, from where I stand now, I can tell you that it is. So, if you do really want to make it work with YouTube, you really have to keep going.
Somehow, some way, I’ve now published 200 videos on my YouTube channel. Even crazier, according to YouTube itself, those videos are getting closer to a combined two million views (1,934,351 as of this writing). Of course, these mind-blowing milestones haven’t always come easy and I’ve learned a lot along the way — and continue to learn every week!. In any case, hopefully these lessons I’ve picked up over the years can help you in starting or growing your own YouTube channel.