Tuesday, November 27, 2018

What to know before starting your YouTube Channel – basic concepts

Getting started with YouTube needs you to be smart, sensible and disciplined. Well, anything in the world which you want to succeed in needs these three virtues. Let's talk about some basic concepts before starting your YouTube Channel.

In this article, I am going to talk about a few other things that you need to do to succeed on YouTube. If you are looking to learn what to know before starting your YouTube Channel, this article is for you. Keep reading.

Many friends keep asking me how to start a YouTube channel. Some have started, produced a few videos but did not see any traction and stopped. A few of them want to start again. This post is specifically for them, who are looking to start or restart their YouTube journey.



I have written an article earlier on how to consider YouTube as a business, and I am sure it will be beneficial too. Please click here to check those if you have not read them already.

In this article today, I am going to talk about the two basic requirements or rather expectations, that you must fulfill to grow on YouTube and remain there on top. 
  • Quality 
  • Consistency

Apart from that, there are a few things you need to focus on while publishing your videos. We are going to talk about those as well, in brief. These are
  • Title
  • Description
  • Tags 
  • Thumbnail

First things first; let’s talk about the basics.

Quality of your videos


There are no two thoughts on the quality of your videos. You must produce the highest quality videos. Viewers do not like low-quality videos and will dismiss them straight away.

There are many channels on YouTube which create content similar to yours. Your content may be a little better than those videos which are already there, but your presentation must match theirs or even exceed if you want to make your mark on the viewer’s mind.

When a viewer is watching a video on YouTube, he is giving up his valuable time. He deserves to watch the very best so that he can justify the time he spends on YouTube too. If he does not get a high-quality video, the viewer has every right to reject your product and move on to another. Moreover, trust me, he will have many options.

When I started my Bengali Puzzle channel – Buddhir Dhenki – there were no such logical or significant channels on YouTube on the same niche. My channel grew and even inspired other YouTube channels to start (which eventually have a much bigger following than me now). However, today, when there are many options for the viewer, we all know that we must bring in our A game to succeed on YouTube.

You already know what you need for your videos, don’t you? If you are creating talking head videos, you would need a great camera, good lighting, nice background, and high standard audio. These are basics of shooting your video.

Once you have shot the video and it is time to edit them, you must obtain a great tool (video editing software), learn how to use it and give your videos awesome looks.

All these when applied together, will help you in creating awesome videos. I am telling you some basic concepts before starting your YouTube Channel. It would be nice if you can focus on these.

Many people are doing screencast videos, where they record the screen of their computer and do a voice over. In such a scenario, you need a good screen recording software and a microphone.

Arrange these things and make some practice videos – a lot of them – and you will be able to improve your techniques of arranging, shooting and editing post-production. 

Quality of your videos needs to be top notch!

Now, not everyone can get an expensive camera or a set of studio lights or costly editing software or even a high-end computer. I understand this, and I agree that you should not spend too much while you are starting the journey.

However, you must be knowing your limitations. You would know how much you can afford to spend. Spend that much and bring up the quality. Improve your videos as much as you can.

If you are not able to get a DSLR Camera, you can use your phone camera for shooting, and this is what I do.

If you are not able to arrange proper studio lights, shoot during the day (or the golden hours, if possible), and this is what I do too.

For my own YouTube videos, I have spent on two microphones (Blue Snowball ICE and Boya BY-LM10 Lavalier mic) and the editing software. I use Camtasia. I also use a few other software, and I will talk about those in a future post.

So, what is the bottom line? The bottom line is that you must try to produce high-quality videos for your YouTube channel. Put in as much as you can. Consider YouTube as a business where you need to put in your money, time and effort. It will be very wise to do that!

The consistency of producing videos


A myth buster! Producing consistent YouTube videos does not mean you need to publish one video every day. It merely says that you need to create a schedule for your videos, inform your audience about that and stick to the plan.

If you choose to publish 3 or 4 or even a single video every week, notify your audience about it on your social media or on your channel itself, and stick to that plan!

Sticking to the plan that you have set for yourself is the best way to be consistent.

Remember, it is not only you for whom you are setting up this schedule. It is for your audience as well.

Correlation with Television
In India, many people spend the lion's share of their time watching daily soaps on television. Whereas in the US, many people have switched from TV to Netflix and YouTube. 

That is not what I want to talk about in this article. I was hoping you could focus on the timing and scheduling of these daily soaps on television. 

Everyone who watch these serials, finish up their work and get themselves ready for the episode scheduled at a fixed time during the day or the evening. They know by heart of the exact time of when that particular channel will telecast the next episode and are sure that it is going to happen without a miss; which is why they prepare themselves and often arrange their chores so that they remain free during that time.

You also have a channel on YouTube, and you also publish your videos or episodes. Why not release the videos at a predetermined day and time? Doing so will make your audience wait for your video, and even they will prepare themselves and keep themselves ready so that they can watch your video the moment you publish it.

Even YouTube is stressing on the point where they want the viewer to watch your videos instantaneously. The two new features of Bell Notification (which is relatively new) and YouTube Video Premiere (which is brand new) point towards stressing on this fact.

Importance of the first two days
The first 48 hours are most important for your video. The popularity and reach that your video receives on the first two days will determine how it is going to do in the future too.

Focus your promotion for your videos on these first two days, as much as you can. The more people your video can reach in the first 48 hours, the better.

YouTube is trying to help the creators with these new features so that they get the bulk of the traffic as soon as the video is published and for the next 48 hours.

When YouTube’s algorithm sees that your videos are consistently getting the push during this time, it will further push your videos up in the list and bring more views and hits. Your channel will grow with leaps and bounces, doing this.

Best Practice Check List while Publishing video


By now, you know how producing high-quality videos and consistently publishing them will help you grow. I cannot end this article without sharing a few best practices that you must do while you release your videos. Though I will talk about these best practices in very brief, this will serve as a checklist while you upload and publish your video to YouTube.

You must do keyword research before finding the topic of your video and choose the keyword that you would want your entire production to revolve around. We are going to use this keyword within the video content and also while updating the YouTube metadata before publishing.

YouTube is the second largest search engine in the world, after Google. Moreover, these searches take place using keywords. It would be best if you made your metadata, the hidden information about your video, friendly to YouTube’s search engine by using the correct keywords in the right places.

The YouTube metadata consists of the title of your video, description and the tags that you use. Each of these is so important that I can write a dedicated post on every segment mentioned below. In this post, I will keep everything short. Let’s look into these segments, one by one.

Title
The title is probably the most critical part of the metadata associated with your video. More often than not, your video gets a hit because someone is searching on YouTube with the title of your video. Ensure that you have the keyword is there in your YouTube video title.

It is only 100 characters long. So, it would help if you were very wise in writing the title of your video.

Description
The description of the video is where you talk more about the video. It is a good idea to write 150-200 words for each of your videos in the description, talking about what the content is all about. Ensure that you have used the title at the start of the description and the keyword(s) at various places in the description. 

You may also add links to your social media pages in the description.

A few people also add affiliate links, but it is a good idea to check with your affiliate provider if they allow you to link to your YouTube videos before you add links.

Tags
Tags, though are significant for your video to surface on YouTube’s search results, these are to be used very wisely. You are bound to write the keywords in there, but also ensure that you write tags that are related to your channel in general and your motives with YouTube. 

There are various types of tags that you can add, apart from the keywords or the title. You can add words that mean similar, words that sound similar, and misspelled keywords to your tags.

We will do a separate post talking only about the YouTube metadata in the coming days as I can see that it will prove to be of great value to you, the reader.

Thumbnail
One of the most important things about your YouTube video is your video thumbnail. It is that image that appears on the side when you are watching a video on YouTube. 

Most of the clicks that your video gets are based on the thumbnail. Even though it is not part of the YouTube metadata, it is something you cannot ignore at all.

Ensure that you create or design awesome clickable thumbnails for your videos and don’t just upload anything that you wish to!

If you need professional help, you can even Hire Professional Freelancers who can create awesome clickable thumbnails for your YouTube videos. Hiring a professional to design your thumbnails will be an excellent investment to the channel.

With this, we have come to the end of this article. These are a few basics that you need to keep in mind if you want to start your YouTube channel. If you can follow these in mind while you get started or get back to your YouTube career, you will be ready to grow on YouTube. I hope you understood and will remember these basic concepts before starting your YouTube Channel.

In future articles, I will try to focus more on various aspects of YouTube one by one. Do let me know in your comments if you have any specific question regarding this. I can even take it up on a video on my YouTube channel or also write a note on my Facebook Page if needed.

The following video was streamed live on YouTube, yesterday where I talked about the same topic. Though I have added quite a bit in this article, still I am sure you will love watching the video too. 

Check it out!




Thanks for reading this post. I hope you liked it. If you did, please do not forget to subscribe to us.

You may also want to check out our YouTube Channel, where we post videos with various freelancing tips and tricks, which can definitely boost your freelancing career and business! The Channel name is The Indian Freelancer and can be accessed here: www.YouTube.com/TheIndianFreelancer.

Thanks a lot,
The Indian Freelancer
Let's Learn and Grow Together!

Friday, November 23, 2018

How to Succeed as a Freelancer in 2019? Execution & Consistency

Every time when I meet someone who is thinking about or getting started with freelancing, I get to hear this one question, which is very prominent. How to succeed as a freelancer? Do you have this question in mind too? If yes, this post is precisely for you. Keep reading.

I am going to divide this entire post into smaller segments where you will learn the following:
  • What is success?
  • What is success in freelancing?
  • What are the two main aspects of being successful as a freelancer?
  • Consistency
  • Execution
  • How can you execute plans consistently?


Let’s get started and look into each of these in an order which will help you in understanding the concept better and assist you in bringing clarity of thoughts. At least, you will be able to plan a path for yourself because you would know how to succeed as a freelancer, by the end of this article.


What is success?

Success is generally a state of mind, I would say, which tells you whether you are satisfied with your goals and achievements. When someone sets some goal for himself, he consistently strives to achieve that goal. And thus, he perceives success as he reaches that goal and achieves it.

Broadly, when we achieve our goals, we call ourselves successful. Goals are integrated with success.

Now, in many cases, these goals are not set by the individual himself. These are set by others – parents, teachers, peers, relatives, spouse, kids, offices and authorities and even movies and television shows are famous for setting up goals. Most of us want to be like someone else – an influencer, maybe and tries to achieve what that person has achieved in life. They want to copy and run behind some goal which is not particularly their own – it is just perceived like that – and more often than not, it is a goal of someone else who has an influence in that person's life.

I have talked a lot about goal setting in my POWER Freelancing Course. I am sure that all my students who have taken up that course know already that a goal needs to be set by yourself. You are the only one who can set your own goals, target them and strive to achieve them too.

When you achieve a goal set by you for yourself, you get the feeling of success. When you run behind someone else’s goal, you tend to remain unsatisfied even after achieving that because by the time you have achieved that initial goal, that someone who set it up for you, would have changed it to another level or something completely different. Achieving someone else’s goal is NOT SUCCESS!

What is success in freelancing?

Success in freelancing is no different from success in any other field. However, more often than not, the goals in freelancing are set by the freelancer himself. That is a huge difference though, and I love it!

Different freelancers set different kinds of goals. While some strive for a target revenue that they can earn from active sources of income over a period of time, some freelancers set a specific level of consistent passive income revenue as their goal.

When they achieve these goals, they feel successful. And the best thing about freelancers is that they can then raise the bar and level up their goal and set a higher aim and strive towards achieving it – everything controlled and dictated by the self.

Success in freelancing is to achieve the freelancing goals you have set for yourself as a freelancer. This is how to succeed as a freelancer.

What are the two main aspects of being successful as a freelancer?

We all know that just setting up the goals did not make anyone successful, did that? Success only comes to those who consistently work towards achieving the goals that they have set for themselves.

Planning a goal is one thing and putting in the right efforts in executing the plan is another. That who can do both will succeed for sure. It will be just a matter of time before he knocks off the peaks of success.

Once after you have set your goals, you will have a journey towards achieving it. The two main aspects of that journey are consistency and execution. Only when you put in the right efforts consistently so as to execute your plan (or a series of plans) that can help you to reach your goals, you will be able to achieve them.

Consistent execution of plans is how to succeed as a freelancer.

There are a lot of other virtues which one may argue to have a lot of impact on being successful. I do not say no to any of those, but if you look at the big picture, you will see that every other virtue converges or boils down to these two. If you are not executing your plans consistently, you will not succeed.

Consistency

What is consistency and how to be consistent?

If you want to be a YouTube sensation, you need to upload quality videos frequently as well as after a fixed and predefined interval of time. If you miss, you may lose a few subscribers because they would be expecting a video from you at a fixed time. Not getting that a few times may offend them.

Publishing a video on your YouTube channel regularly at a fixed time and day is very important. It lets you develop a habit in your subscribers to watch your videos. Some will even schedule their work to make time for you when you publish regularly at a specific time. This is called consistency. Constantly doing what you do is consistency.

Consistency can be in action as well as in thoughts. I always tell everyone that you need to think about what you want to become. Consistent thinking about your future self, accelerates your journey towards achieving what you intend to.

When you have planned your way towards your goal, be consistent. Do something about it every single day. Get closer to your goal inch by inch. Putting in some effort in reaching your goals every day is the best example of being consistent.

I just gave an example of a YouTuber. Consistency is a true necessity for anyone working in any field. If you are a blogger and that is how you want to be recognized as, you must keep writing and publishing your articles consistently. You choose how frequently you want to post – daily, weekly, monthly – and do that consistently; do that regularly. That is the key!

Execution

When you are consistent, more often than not, execution will take care of itself. You will be able to execute your plan and move towards fulfilling your aims and goals.

It is often found that people wake up early in the morning, with a clear vision of what needs to be done, opens the computer and sits there for hours actually DOING NOTHING!

That is where execution is hit. That is where aims remain unaccomplished and success is not achieved.

The whole purpose behind walking up early in the morning is to do what you are supposed to do, and not wasting time just by pretending to be busy. If you are doing that personally, it is time to STOP and get back on track of consistent execution.

At times we take too much on our plate and the plan looks overwhelming. This is a very common scenario when execution fails, even though we try to put consistency in what we do and remain engaged.

So far whatever we have talked about, I am sure we have understood that we need consistency and execution in whatever we do to succeed as a freelancer. Let’s find out now how to execute plans consistently.

How can you execute plans consistently?

This is where it gets trickier. Even when we are consistent, we fail to execute a lot of things in life and in business too. Don’t we?

The answer to this situation here is hidden in the question itself.

We fail to execute a lot of things when we have A LOT OF THINGS to execute or to accomplish.

We do not need to fill up our plate with whatever we get and then struggle to gobble them up. It is not a big fat wedding lunch party! There is no need to take everything on offer. Take a look at the entire buffet, plan what you intend to eat and then take only that much that you can eat and remain happy and healthy even after eating.

Plan a path for yourself. Design it for yourself. Break your plan into smaller parts and set milestones which you can achieve in a certain period. Then, work consistently in executing the smaller part-plans and achieve those small milestones.

After a certain time, when you add up your small achievements, you will see that you have actually achieved quite a lot. Often, this practice of achieving smaller milestones makes us ready to take up bigger assignments over a longer period of time. This is precisely how to succeed as a freelancer or as whatever work profile you have.

Achieving smaller milestones not only bring you closer to your ultimate aim but also boosts you with confidence that you can actually do it.

Set SMART Goals, where your goals are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Rational and Time-bound. I have talked a lot about goal setting and SMART Goals in my POWER Freelancing course, which deals mainly with Time Management and Productivity

If you have not taken up the course yet, please visit the course page and check the course curriculum and the FREE preview lectures. Only after that if you like the course, please take it up. You can click on the links in this article or use my coupon (POWER10) to get a 90% Discount. This course is specially designed for freelancers, though I am sure it will help everyone who is seeking to explore more about time management and productivity.

This was all about consistency and execution, the two main aspects that you must follow if you want to know how to succeed as a freelancer. Please feel free to ask if you have any questions regarding what you have just read. I will be more than happy to answer all your queries.

I am gearing up for the new year. Are you too? Do let me know in your comments on how you are preparing yourself and your business for 2019.

Until next time, keep hustling, and enjoying whatever you love to do. Let’s learn and grow together.


Thanks for reading this post. I hope you liked it. If you did, please do not forget to subscribe to us.

You may also want to check out our YouTube Channel, where we post videos with various freelancing tips and tricks, which can definitely boost your freelancing career and business! The Channel name is The Indian Freelancer and can be accessed here: www.YouTube.com/TheIndianFreelancer.

Thanks a lot,
The Indian Freelancer
Let's Learn and Grow Together!