9 Ways to Future-proof Your YouTube Channel
This is the age of the side-hustle and everyone is looking for some way to express themselves, create an extra stream of income and take advantage of social media. Starting a YouTube channel ranks really high as the most popular side-hustle – in fact “YouTuber” is actually the most desired career choice of young people these days. Having a YouTube channel is fun, but it’s also quite challenging if you don’t really have a plan for it. It might take 2 or more years to get your channel to take off, so if you’re going to start the channel, make sure you’re prepared to do the hard work that will eventually pay off. So how do you set your YouTube channel up for future success? Here are a few things you have to do.
- Build with the future in mind
A successful YouTube channel is not something that happens in a flash, it takes time. If you really want to future-proof yourself and the content, you first have to adopt the right mindset. Many people expect that the channel is going to be getting hundreds of thousands in a matter of months, but it usually takes years to get to that level. So don’t expect quick income from this, take it as a long-term investment. Make sure you have other streams of income, run the YouTube channel as a side-hustle so that there’s no pressure on you earning money from it.
- Pick a Niche You Truly Care About
In order to have success on YouTube, you’ll have to make sure whatever you’re talking about has a long runway on it. The best way to ensure this is to actually choose a niche that you’re truly passionate about. Why start a beauty YouTube channel when it’s not something you enjoy? Choosing a niche you enjoy gives you the fuel to keep coming up with ideas, grow your skill, and it’s something that viewers will be able to pick up on. The truth about YouTube is, there are going to be lulls – seasons and periods where you don’t have energy to create content. If you like the niche you’re in, you’ll be able to power and push through, and still follow through on the content.
- Prepare For Your Success in Advance
Just because your YouTube channel isn’t something that earns money quickly, doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t also plan ahead for when it does take off. There are certain assets you need to have in place so that no one can claim it as their own when you become more well-known. For example, you should consider getting your name and catch-phrases trademarked. It will give you a legal claim if someone ever steals your idea. Another important thing to do is to buy and register a website domain that’s associated with your channel’s name. You don’t even have to create a website right away, but having something registered would be a smart move. The last thing you want is to want to register it and then find out that someone already went ahead and did that first. In a worst case scenario, you can always get in touch with a domain broker service to help you get the domain that matches with your brand.
- Evergreen Content
If you’re treating your YouTube channel as a long-term investment, you’re also going to have to reflect that in the content you post. Instead of just having topics that are popular for now, try to make sure you also mix in content and topics that are evergreen – topics that will always have a demand and people searching for it. That way you’re guaranteed to have viewers in the long-run, which will add to your views.
- Search Engine Optimization
In trying to grow your YouTube channel, don’t be too focused on getting a lot of views through your own social circle. Sure, it helps to have the people who know and love you giving you the boost you need, but what really pushes the needle is growing your own loyal audience and following. One of the best ways to do this is to really put some thought into search engine optimization for your YouTube channel so that you can start generating views through what people are looking for.
Remember, YouTube is the world’s second biggest search engine, and people are always looking for tips, hacks and tricks, so why not play into that? It’s actually very easy to do search engine optimization – you can use the YouTube search bar’s autocomplete tool to actually see what people are searching for. Write down all the search terms that come up and then include them organically and naturally into your YouTube titles and descriptions. If you do it well enough, views from the search engine will start rolling in and that will grow steadily and give your content more visibility.
- Focus on Quality
If you really want your YouTube channel to grow, garner loyal subscribers and really rise to the top of your niche, you actually have to focus on creating high-quality content that’s polished and engaging. The best thing you can do is to really invest in the equipment and the skills that truly position you as a professional and make people want to keep watching. Luckily, it’s not extremely expensive to do this – you just need a good camera, these days, smartphone cameras produce high quality footage. You can also get a microphone and some lighting. You also want to invest in good quality editing software and learn how to use it so that you get the best quality content. Also remember that you don’t create a polished YouTube channel right out the gate. You have to get comfortable on camera, learn how to be more engaging, so don’t expect your first few videos to be perfect. Give yourself grace to get good at it, and this doesn’t happen instantly.
- Be Authentic
What makes people choose to subscribe to someone’s YouTube channel and become so loyal that they never miss an upload? PERSONALITY! You have to build your tribe of people who love you and want to consume all your content and support you. People want to feel like they relate to you, and the only way to do that is to be yourself and not try to copy anyone. Think about all the unique things about you that make you different and bring that to your content. The most successful YouTubers make their subscribers feel like their friends and this is something you can easily do.
- Be Consistent
Another important way to set yourself up for success on YouTube is to be consistent. The most successful YouTubers make sure they commit to a posting schedule that their subscribers can rely on. You really have to become consistent and predictable in the frequency and regularity of your posts. If you post every week on a Sunday, then stick to that. If you post every second Friday of the month, don’t deviate from that. Not only does this help you build a rapport with your audience, it’s also really great for the algorithm. When you first begin, think of the posting schedule that you can commit to. If you have a day job and other responsibilities, don’t take on a frequency you can’t sustain, and be sure to take into account details like how long it’s going to take to edit the video and prepare it for posting.
- Treat Content As An Investment
Most people erroneously think that it takes one awesome video to become successful. The truth is, the people who find success on YouTube actually have to create a big catalogue of content, and then once the channel takes off, people will go back and start viewing that content. If you already have a decent number of videos on the channel, you create the perfect opportunity for binge-watching. The most successful YouTubers have content from years ago that people are still watching and enjoying to this day. That’s the ideal situation you want to create – and you do this by just making a long-term investment into a content catalogue that will pay off once you start getting views and subscribers. Once you have that solid stack of videos, it’s easier to start focusing on increasing your views.
There’s never been a better time to start your own YouTube channel. The platform has billions of eyes on it every single year, and you can establish a really great brand, by converting just a fraction of those people into your own loyal subscribers. It’s very important to lay the necessary groundwork for your YouTube channel to take off and succeed, and that starts in the planning phase.
You want to create this channel thinking of the long-term outcomes you want. Many people assume that you can start a YouTube channel today and have success tomorrow. The platform is highly competitive and it takes time. If you’re signing up to start a channel, be well aware of it. Don’t expect a quick turnaround – and with that in mind, don’t be too focused on instant gratification but rather on the future. This will keep you motivated and consistent for weeks, months and years.