Everyday a YouTuber hangs up his GoPro or his capture card and gives up on YouTube. Lets get something straight real quick: YouTube is not for the faint of heart, just like self employment isn’t. If you want to be successful on YouTube then you need to treat it like a business and you need to have the ability to be self motivated.
Some of you don’t have what it takes and that’s okay.
If you’re asking yourself the question “Should I quit YouTube?” Then this post will give you 4 steps to stay motivated but, I will also be sharing the cold hard truth. You might come away from this post with a second wind and a burst of inspiration or you might realise that success on YouTube isn’t the quick easy path you thought it was going to be and you may decide that you’re not willing to put in the work necessary to reach your YouTube goals.
1) Be Realistic
I think most people who quit YouTube quit due to the fact that they weren’t realistic with their goals and predictions. Poor results came along and they were hit with a reality check. If you’re new on YouTube and you get 1 view on your video, that is okay – 1 is always better than 0. You shouldn’t be expecting to blow up overnight or even in a timely manner, in fact expecting anything at all can lead to demotivation when you don’t get what you expect. You need to treat YouTube just like you’d treat learning an instrument or a language. Expect to be crap at it in the beginning and learn to take pleasure in the journey of self improvement and learning.
It can take years to get to grips with YouTube and actually maintain consistent steady growth, you need to be prepared for that. You also need to be prepared to experiment and change your channel if it doesn’t seem to be working out. The most important thing you need to do in my opinion is give it time. I see YouTubers upset that their videos didn’t get enough views in the first 48 hours or that they’re not getting as many views and subscribers as they expected to get from a video – don’t let that get to you. I’ve had many videos that most people, who don’t know a lot about YouTube, would consider flopped in the first 48 hours. Some videos will be under 100 views or even under 50 views for weeks but 6 months later that same video might be bringing in thousands of views a month.
2) Be Patient
As a new YouTuber being patient is key to maintaining your sanity and drive. If you upload 20 videos and you get under 100 views in total then you might be persuaded to give up or at the very least you may slow down on your uploads and become demotivated – and that is where you lose. As a smaller YouTuber you shouldn’t be thinking about the views and subs you’re getting today, instead you should think about how you can create a library of content that is successful 6 months from now.
People might not see your videos and you may have very little traffic on your channel in the early days but if you remain consistent, you use good video SEO and you develop a good content strategy you will reap the rewards in time, you just need to be patient and keep putting out videos. Remember that the more content you put out, the more opportunities you have to be discovered and to have a video that does well. I suggest you find a balance between quantity and quality and keep creating opportunities.
3) Don’t Compare Yourself To Other YouTubers
It’s easy to feel like your accomplishments and numbers aren’t good enough when you’re continually comparing yourself to bigger or more successful YouTubers. The thing is, everyone’s channel is different and everyone has a different path to success. Looking at a similar YouTuber to you and seeing what works for them can offer you some inspiration and help you come up with something that works for you but try not to be discouraged because someone is doing better than you.
You need to focus on improving yourself and being better than the person you was yesterday. Make better content than the content you made last week and don’t allow yourself to be disillusioned by internet numbers. Try to put everything into perspective, if you get 20 views on a video that’s 20 people who you reached with that video. 20 people is a lot of people but it seems like peanuts when you only look at it in terms of “views” compared to the views of other videos on the internet. Imagine how long it would take to introduce yourself to 20 people individually, how about 100 people, now picture introducing yourself to 1000 people.
When you put it into perspective and you realise that each view is a person and not just a bot or a number online, 20, 100 or 1000 views seems much bigger than it did before.
4) Write Down Your Goals And Work Towards Them
Knowing what you want to achieve with your channel and writing it down will help you remain focused on your goals and keep you on track. Writing your goals down isn’t nearly enough, you need to be actively working towards that goal every single day. Build up a habit of being productive and working towards your desired goal. If you have other obligations you don’t need to commit extensive time to this endeavour everyday but you should be spending an hour minimum every day on achieving your goals. If you’re unable to find an hour everyday to work towards your goal but you’re able to watch your favourite shows and chill out then maybe you’re not cut out for success.
You don’t have to move mountains every day, you could spend an hour brainstorming content ideas or educating yourself about YouTube and marketing, just make sure that you’re moving towards your goals every day.
So, remember to be realistic, it might take years for you to reach 1000 subscribers. If you’re watching the rest of my videos or reading the rest of my posts then it shouldn’t take that long as I’ve shared a lot of information that should expedite the process but do not expect to be an overnight success, the chances of that are slim.
Remain patient as it takes time to build a catalogue of work and a community of people who are interested in your work, focus on becoming a better YouTuber and a better you.
And make sure you don’t make the critical error of comparing your accomplishments to other creators – focus on you and your path. Appreciate every view and subscriber that comes your way and remember that you are entitled to nothing and the only thing that’s promised to us is death. Don’t ever make the mistake of thinking you deserve anything. That type of mindset usually breeds failure.
And lastly write down the goals you want to achieve and work towards them everyday. If you actually put the work in every single day and you remain aware of what you’re working towards you will make progress. How much progress you make depends on you, it depends on luck and it depends on your strategy, but regardless of those factors consistent work towards something specific will result in progress.
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Also published on Medium.