1 Year On YouTube – Channel Growth Lessons From a Small YouTuber

Transcript – 1 Year On YouTube

Hey, guys. I’m really excited to announce that this is my first full year on YouTube complete. As of this month, I’ve been on the platform for one whole year. I’ve done a lot of things since I’ve been on there and uploaded my first video. I want to share with you what I’ve learned in that time, what progress has happened to me personally in that time from a professional and personal point of view as well, and the opportunities that I’ve received as a result of uploading my first video to YouTube a year ago.

All the way through to now, it’s been a lot of hard work, it’s been really exciting. I’ve been loving doing it and I just want to share some of the things I’ve learned with you guys over the last year and that’s coming upright now.

Hey, guys. Darren Taylor of thebigmarketer.co.uk here. My job is to teach you all about search engine marketing. If that’s up your street, you should consider subscribing to my channel. Welcome back if you’re a subscriber. If you’re not, go ahead and hit that little notification down below. Don’t forget to ring the bell.

Now, today, what I want to share with you is my thoughts on being on YouTube for one whole year and really get to show you and help you understand what it’s been like for me and understand this is, I guess, the benefits this has given me over time and also understand the difficulties as well. It’s going to be a bit of the rough with the smooth. I want to share my lessons with you and share some of my successes as well. Let’s get into it.

First things first, it’s really, really hard to be on YouTube. It’s a very difficult social media network to master. A lot of work goes into producing content which is why the barrier to entry is actually quite high, so there’s a lot of good channels out there and it’s really difficult to get a channel going, which is really exciting for me because it means that you have to develop and get really good at what you’re doing to try and grow your channel.

1 year on YouTube

1 year on YouTube is a big milestone for me!

This is a difficult part for me. I think over the last year, I’ve gone obviously from zero subscribers to, at the point of making this video, about 900 subscribers. A lot of people say that’s not too bad. I’m on a number of YouTube forums and I talk to new YouTubers all the time. What I hear is that 900 subscribers in your first year is pretty good. It’s pretty good. It’s not amazing, it’s not somebody that’s taken off from blowing up, which I didn’t expect anyway considering the genre of my videos, but overall, that’s not a bad year.

I know people on these forums I speak to have been doing YouTube for two years and they’ve got 250 subscribers, for example. I can’t be angry at that. It’s a very good result for me and I’m quite happy with what it’s done. Again, going back to what a number of people who are experts on YouTube say, it’s not all about subscribers, it’s all about the opportunities YouTube can give you.
Let me go into some of those, actually, because some of them are quite interesting. Beside the obvious of building up your personal brand and making sure people are more aware of who you are in your field, which YouTube has done for me, YouTube has also presented me with opportunities to speak at public speaking events. Let me name a few of those for example.

I go back to my University and give lectures at the University of Greenwich. That’s an opportunity that came about purely because of my YouTube channel. In addition to that, I’ve also given talks at Hult International Business School. Again, a direct result of being on YouTube, showing that I can present, showing that I know my stuff and being able to present in a comprehensive way. All of these things have provided me with opportunities.
Again, I’ve just had a recent opportunity now to speak with the IDM, which is the Institute of Direct and Digital Marketing. I can’t wait to do that talk as well. Again, it’s something that’s come around as a result of my YouTube channel. You might think 900 subscribers, not a huge amount of subscribers, so maybe it’s not been a successful year, but when you look at the opportunities it’s provided me doing this and building my personal brand, it’s been massive for me from a career point of view, from a revenue point of view. Just from being noticed in my industry, if I didn’t start this, I wouldn’t have had the opportunities I’ve had.

Let’s not forget the fun I’ve had as well. As a marketer, you’re always trying to learn new things and new platforms and understand things. For me, in the last year, I’ve absolutely loved being on YouTube. In addition to that, it gives me the chance to build up my presentation skills. Even more so than that, I’ve actually started building online courses now to learn digital marketing. Those will be coming out soon.
Keep an eye out for those if you’re interested in learning more about digital marketing. Across many platforms, I’ll be releasing courses in the near future. If I didn’t do YouTube and have a year worth of video on and camera presence time behind me, I probably wouldn’t be able to deliver video courses. Again, that’s another huge benefit of being on YouTube as well.

You may have also noticed my production quality has gone up from my very first video all the way through to now. If I talk you through some of the equipment I’ve used in the past, it would have been my Samsung Galaxy S7 phone. Even a three or four-year-old phone was the first thing I used to record. That phone could film at 1080P at 60 frames a second, so I couldn’t even be angry at that. That was a good start for me.

I was happy using the phone. I bought myself a clip-on microphone as well so I could actually start you getting better sound quality and not just using the built-in microphone of my phone. That really helped to bring the quality up as well.

From there, I went to a secondhand shop and got a great deal on a bridge camera, a Panasonic Lumix. That was really helpful. That served me really, really well in the last, I guess, seven or eight months of being on YouTube. Then very recently, I’ve got myself a DSLR camera, which is a Canon 200D, which is an entry-level DSLR camera. Nothing too crazy. It’s quite a small model of camera as well. I’m not going to spend thousands of pounds.

I’ve also bought myself some lights, so hopefully, I should be lit up quite well in this scene. Again, those lights I’m using in this very video cost less than 40 quid. Again, not spending crazy amounts of money, but really wanting to improve the quality of my videos. I’ve also invested in equipment as well.

Overall, looking back at the content of this video and also the context of being on YouTube for one year, my key takeaways are, be excited about what you are creating. Because I love marketing, whatever subjects you cover on your channel, you should be excited about as well. Make sure that comes through in all of your video content, and it should anyway because you love what you do, right?
The next thing is don’t don’t give up. A lot of people I even know now would give up at 900 subscribers because they haven’t hit the heights of YouTube fame or viral video. If that’s what you’re after, fair enough. If you’re going to have bad mental health issues because you haven’t hit a certain number of subscribers and that’s the reason you started your channel, then fair enough. Take a step back and stop doing it, but if you love what you do, even if you’ve got one subscriber, it doesn’t matter. Continue doing the work and you will get better and better over time.
Finally, I know it ties into something I’ve mentioned already, but just stop giving a damn about your subscriber number. It doesn’t matter. At the end of the day, you are on the platform to entertain a select number of people and people who share the passion that you do. It can also present you with a number of opportunities. For example, YouTubers like Roberto Blake has hundreds of thousands of subscribers, but he doesn’t even care about that because all he cares about is creating content that matters to him and his audience. Also more than that, the opportunities it presents him from a business point of view and a career point of view as well.

For me, that echoes and mirrors with me as well because I want to get into a position where I get the opportunities as a result of my channel. So far, one year in, I can safely say I’m getting all the opportunities I could have hoped for.

If you like this video, please leave me a like below. Let me know in the comments what you think about YouTube, whether you want to start a channel, whether you have a channel, how you’re growing as a small YouTuber. Let me know in the comments. More important than that, don’t forget to subscribe, ring the bell, make sure you get those notifications. Check out the other content on my channel. I hope to see you guys again on my next video.

Darren Taylor