So You Wanna Stand Out On YouTube…
How to Standout On YouTube as a Small YouTuber
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“Hi my name is Roberto Blake from RobertoBlake.com, helping YOU create something awesome today.”
It’s the same intro that I’ve used in over 1,000 pieces of content and it’s just one of the many ways that I’m able to stand out on YouTube to make me different. The same goes with my hat — it’s my Steve Jobs turtleneck.
After 4 years, I was able to get from 0 to a quarter of a million subscribers on YouTube and that’s amazing to me, because I didn’t think that there would be such a demand for a channel whose main message is to learn stuff and work hard. But the demand is there and I was able to get there by focusing on what was unique about me and playing to my strengths.
People ask me all the time: “How do I get noticed on YouTube?”
The simple truth is, if you’re going to try to play by the rules — it isn’t going to happen. Nobody that I’m aware of got tremendous amounts of success by playing by the rules. Rules were made for the people who made the rules.
If you want to win — make your own rules around your strengths, your weaknesses and what will make you successful.
Another thing, I actually produced, edited and marketed 1,000 videos in 3–4 years by myself. I’ve been fortunate that this is the last year that I’ll be doing everything on my own, but what this did a lot for me:
1. It helped me get better faster.
2. It helped me get comfortable on camera and in my own skin.
3. It helped me define and re-define what my own style is.
This plays into consistency. One way to stand out, is by being the most consistent person doing the content that you are doing. When someone is looking for a video, they may only have 1–2 options, because that’s all that’s out there.
Why don’t you show up and offer them another choice, by creating 10x the amount of content already out there?
Why don’t you do it in the way that only YOU can do it?
There’s many reasons why someone might connect to you compared to what’s already out there. You just have to give them that choice.
Of course, one of the many concerns is that the market is “over-saturated.” But here’s the thing, everybody that you look up to — started at zero.
So the biggest thing you can do is start now! At the end of the day, maybe 2010 was the best time to start YouTube, but you know what the second best time to start YouTube is — Today.
Maybe you’re into gaming. I’ve seen hundreds of people make Let’s Plays. You know what I haven’t seen a lot of — someone going out to flea markets and vlogging to find a retro game or console. There’s always a way to do something different and unique.
You have to focus on your unique qualities. You have an individual experience and voice that nobody else has. Just because we have millions of voices and options, it doesn’t mean that you can’t be a completely new and unique option.
YouTube being over-saturated is completely irrelevant, because one more option to viewers is always better. Don’t make the choice for people by rejecting yourself first, focus on what is unique about you and execute.
Even if you just change a format a bit differently, you could be presenting an option that people enjoy. It won’t happen overnight, but give it a couple of years and your format could be the new standard.
Take Casey Neistat for example: He revolutionized the way vlogging is done by incorporating filmmaking. He brought epic levels of cinematography to a genre of videos that was over-saturated and already dying off and completely changed the game, now everyone copies him. Not only was he able to add his own unique style to vlogs, but he would do this everyday, maintaining a regular level of consistency. Now he has over 7 million subscribers.
It’s about finding that one thing that you can do with your own unique spin and showing up everyday.
It can really be broken down into the three C’s — Creativity, Consistency, Context
First, you want to know what your unique, intrinsic creative value is.
Then you ask yourself: Am I being consistent? How sustainable is this? What is consistent about me?
And then context: Who does this matter to? Who is in my audience? Why do they care? What can I do to be better?
Let’s talk about Types of Content On YouTube. If you want to stand out on YouTube, you need to figure out what your balance is and what your content strategy is.
There are three types of content on YouTube:
· Help Content- Tutorials, How-To, DIY
· Hub/Community Content — Vlogs
· Hero/Produced Content — Films, Motivational Videos
So you have to figure out your balance between these types of content. Maybe you’re the type of creator that just wants to vlog about your day. While this is fine and covers your hub content, you should also make a few videos that would help your viewers. Showing off your gear and tutorials could be a way to get your videos to show up in search which will help you get more viewers. Then you might have a big idea which could be turned into hero content. These are the type of videos that could pop with viral potential.
Finding this balance is very important.
There are a lot of components to visual branding and standing out.
· Your YouTube channel artwork is important. If someone goes to your channel to find out what kind of content you have, your artwork will be one of the first things they see. Not mention there are a lot of places where your YouTube channel artwork shows up for promoting.
· Your thumbnails are obviously important. That’s what gives you clicks and views. So having a unique style for thumbnails and making sure that they’re recognizable is important.
· Your visual style, the way you edit, the way you frame — all of this cultivates your own unique style that people will pick up on and appreciate.
· Your YouTube End Cards, you could be doing something different and unique. Maybe you share fan art or thank people from social media.
· Your YouTube Watermark could be something different than your logo.
· Your Channel Layout is important to make sure that people know what to expect from your channel, plus it’s a way that you could stand out.
You could actually learn a lot just by looking at bigger brands and the way they do things. Specifically I like the way that Adobe does their visual strategy.
Most of the YouTubers that become successful, they really do their homework. They study what’s going on in their niche, they’ve been studying, and they’ve been training like an athlete. They came prepared.
Remember, instead of playing by the rules of your niche, go rogue, find what’s great about another niche and bring it to yours.
Quality video comes down to the quality of the experience the video creates.
Videos live and die by their own merit. What this means is, that it doesn’t matter how many subscribers you have. If the thumbnail isn’t enticing someone to click on it and the content itself isn’t quality, then the subscriber count is irrelevant.
Small YouTubers have a tremendous opportunity, simply by using a trend and making sure that it is quality content and shows up in search. This is why you can see some people ‘blow up overnight,’ but you still have to make sure that you have other content on your channel that is valuable to potential viewers.
The reality that you live in, as a small creator, may resonate more with the average everyday person, because bigger creators have an entirely different reality.
Visual Quality — Matters, but not as much as you think. Since our phones have gotten so much more advanced, in many cases, your phone camera is good enough.
Audio Quality — Audio is probably the most important and yet, as long as it’s okay, you won’t have any problems.
Editing Quality — You need to make sure that the story flows, but again, this isn’t super important.
Good content is sometimes about objective quality, but not always. We can all agree that there are some videos with very little objective quality get so many views. This all comes down to:
If something is interesting, relevant and engaging to you — it’s a good video to you. It doesn’t matter if the video was shot with a $3000 camera or a $30 camera, if people don’t find your video interesting, relevant or engaging, they’re not going to like the video.
If you want to stand out on YouTube, find a way to connect these three subjective quality points, so that you can be your viewers’ favorite. Experiment, find out what got you the most watch time, the most comments, the most views, so that you can build a format that will get you these things consistently. That’s how YouTubers like Jake Paul got 10 million+ subscribers in such a short span of time.
So how do you standout on YouTube as a Small YouTuber?
- You have to know what works for you — Have self-awareness.
- What’s interesting and unique about you and can other people relate to?
- Do you have the capacity to deliver an emotionally satisfying video?
- How do you replicate this formula over-and-over again, so that you can become their favorite?
- How can you bring something new to your niche?
- What about you is just a little different?
Article Edited by Zach Snyder (Thanks Zach!)