The process of making a YouTube channel can be an easy task—more accessible than creating a Facebook or Instagram profile. That being said, the process of keeping a YouTube channel, maintaining it, and making it into a hub for fans waiting for your next video is another thing entirely. How to start a YouTube channel is a question more connected to your inner self, and to understand that, you need to know how you feel about your content topic.
How to Start a YouTube Channel
A YouTube channel is like a start-up business that you can create for free. In fact, it's almost literally that because of the monetary system engineered within YouTube. These days, there's hardly a person that posts a video that doesn't hope for at least the smallest amount of traction for their channel to make an income from. There is no problem with this, of course, but this does mean that you have to be aware of the things that are imperative to being a YouTuber.
Whether you choose to be a blogger, an analyst, an entertainer, or a mix of different styles, you need to have a drive and understanding of your material. Your editing, style, image, gimmick, and expertise all come into play when thinking of how to start a YouTube channel because if you aren't confident in these and you don't know your direction, how will your audience know?
The first step in determining how to start a YouTube channel is, of course, signing up. This is the most natural part, so don't stress about this too much. A Gmail account needs to be set up so you can get notifications on your videos. You can also link your Gmail with your YouTube account for convenience since they are both owned by Google. Once your account is set up, half of your work is done. Next, just link the YouTube channel with your Gmail, create your username, and you are done!
The channel is up, but you will still need a channel logo and a banner. When creating a logo and banner, don't be lazy. If you pick your favorite anime character, Shadow the Hedgehog, a My Little Pony fan-made Pony, or furry art as your picture, your channel will not be taken seriously. If you want viewers to check out your channel, we suggest getting a good logo to compliment your videos or making one yourself. Even a low quality, self-made logo looks better than nothing.
Let's talk about editing. If you are planning on making some money, and you're trying to learn how to start a YouTube channel successfully, then you need to know how to edit. How good you need to be depends on what you plan to do, but no matter what, you need to know at least the bare minimum. If you are a Lets Player, a vlogger/blogger, or a podcaster, then you probably aren't going to need much editing knowledge. Most other formats, however, will need at least a bit of knowledge.
Don't despair, however! There are many videos online that can help you, and learning the minimum in Premiere or Sony Vegas is what YouTubers have done since the dawn of YouTube, so you have nothing to worry about. You will need to buy editing software as well as some other equipment like a camera, a microphone, and possibly more depending on your video style. It's a good idea to start out by thinking of all the components you will need.
Understanding Your Style
This is, possibly, the most important step in figuring out how to start a YouTube channel—what your style will be. Are you a Lets Player in the style of Markiplier, Pewdiepie or JackSepticEye? Are you a vlogger in the style of Logan Paul or CaseyNeistats? Are you a comedic or informative anime or game review channel like Gigguk, DouchebagChocolat, NakeyJakey, SuperEyepatchWolf or Wrightly So?
Whatever you are, you need to know how their structures work, how you want to present your style of that structure, and what your topic or niche will be.
While you don't always need to keep the conversations in your videos within a said niche, doing so gives your audience an easier, more coherent structure to expect on your channel and makes it easier for you to choose the topics of your new videos. Having a style and structure to your videos is important. Choose wisely what you want to talk about so that you don't get bored when generating new content.
While you can definitely stick to the status quo when thinking of your style, having a good gimmick divides the good from the great. Of all the YouTubers we mentioned, every one of them has become popular due to having a semi-unique gimmick about them.
Markiplier and Pewdiepie both focus on horror-style games to give humorous reactions, but Markiplier banks more on his sultry, deeper tone than Pewdiepie who drives uniqueness through his accent. JacksSepticEye's charm also stems from his accent but truly shines through his over-the-top and boisterous demeanor. Logan and Jake Paul both create unique content and drive revenue through their ability to be as hateful and terrible as possible while still pandering specifically towards children.
Anime reviewers like Gigguk and DouchebagChocolat are very different in style with Gigguk having a more defined and direct style of comedy, derived from a more typical style of humor. DouchebagChocolat, on the other hand, goes for darker, odder, and edgier humor, fitting it all with a sporadic, simple, yet complex editing style.
Contrarily, more serious game/anime reviewers like Wrightly So! and SuperEyepatchWolf both have high, intensive, and even sometimes professional-looking editing in their work. SuperEyepatchWolf stands out with sultry and almost down-tempo diatribes suggesting a show or informing you of things he personally enjoys. Wrightly So! focuses on talking of the things you might already know and then picks them apart and talks about specific ideas within that piece of work.
Gaming channels like NakeyJakey, JonTron and VideoGameDunkey show a difference in comedic styles, demeanor, and even game-related topics and choices. These are just a few examples of what it means to have a unique vibe and gimmick in your videos. Whether you choose to be more serious or comedic, interesting or mindless, educational or fun, creative or bland, you are always going to want to create something unique. It makes your channel yours and creates a persona that people will want to come back to.
Your image is important too—and no, we do not mean how you look. Knowing how to start a YouTube channel means knowing how to market yourself. No matter how you make a video, you are going to make an image of yourself. Every YouTuber is portraying an image and wants their audience to perceive them in a certain way. Portraying that "character" gives the audience something to expect and enjoy.
Many YouTubers simply portray themselves as normal people, which is a fine and valid approach. If you choose to portray more of a character, your persona is still a slice of yourself—the self that you want others to see. This appeals to your audience and even begins to show your audience that you are their friend. This is very appealing for a viewer and can make for a more popular channel. This is also situational, and how you create this persona is purely up to you.
So, we've said a lot about the production side of making a YouTube channel, but how do you gain traction? There are a lot of ways to do so, but the main way is through advertisement and topic optimization.
Being able to pay for different facets of your YouTube channel is not a necessity, and it can totally be done for free. You will have a huge advantage, however, if you have a good advertising agent to help you get your name out there. Now, of course, you will need to have videos that you can present and advertise, but even before you make your videos you can start to think about how your advertising will work.
Another huge factor when wondering how to start a YouTube channel is the time between videos. This is a problem for most start-up YouTube channels because it's hard to dictate how much time you will have to spend on making and producing videos. Most of the time, this is what causes a YouTube channel to die, meaning the YouTuber quits adding content to the channel. You don't want this to happen to you because it's the quickest way to get people to unsubscribe or become disinterested in your work.
The Comment Section
Now, let's talk about the comment section on YouTube. This is important in knowing how to start a YouTube channel. In summary, it can be the worst. Knowing this now will make your life a lot better later. No matter what subject matter or style you pick, you will probably have negative comments on your videos. Don't listen to them. Trolling is a common occurrence on YouTube.
Cyberbullying is another common problem on YouTube and can lead to terrible results, so know the signs. Cyberbullying is a form of bullying that only takes place over digital devices like computers and tablets, and it can happen to anyone. It can ruin some peoples lives and even be extremely dangerous. It can happen through a text message, a private message, or even a Skype message. It can also include sending, posting, or sharing negative, harmful, false, or mean content about someone else.
Some other forms of cyberbullying include sharing personal or private information about someone else or causing embarrassment or humiliation. Some forms of cyberbullying can even be straight up illegal.
With the abundance of digital platforms such as social media, there are more chances of your personal pictures being viewed by strangers, which means the threat of cyberbullying is very real. The question of how to start a YouTube channel can be answered by having the confidence, but you need to know what to be confident about.
The content an individual shares online creates a kind of permanent public record of their views, activities, and behavior, no matter the medium they choose to practice this toxicity. This public record can be thought of like an online reputation which may be accessible to schools, employers, colleges, clubs, and others who may want to research an individual now or in the future. Cyberbullying can harm the online reputations of everyone involved–not just the person being bullied but also those doing the bullying or taking part in it.
Cyberbullying has unique concerns in that it can be persistent, permanent, and hard to notice. Sometimes it can even be harder to deal with. Bullying can be hard to handle, and if you are young, it is even harder. Most YouTubers post whatever they feel and are brutally honest. This leads to the thought that maybe children should not be left unattended while making a YouTube channel.
You should definitely watch many YouTube channels to understand and get a good sense of what you are getting into, especially if you're looking to get paid while doing it. Having a good basis for who you want to draw inspiration from will help make your editing process much more structured.
Don't only watch your competition when you research your videos. Look at how every person weaves their stories and see what elements you want to adopt. This is important to every person's journey to fame, and it is important to know your own personality and what you feel comfortable doing.
At last, you should know what equipment you will need for your journey and how exactly you should use it. As we said before, the structure you choose for your videos will decide the exact materials you will use, but here are some common tools that should help you understand how much money you might spend, how you need to practice, and exactly what you should look for.
Adobe Premiere and Sony Vegas
The first thing to think about is your editing software. Adobe Premiere is the most obvious choice for this. It's pretty easy to use, is a fun tool to learn, and is an industry standard in many cases. Premiere is a timeline-based editing app that was developed by Adobe Systems, and it does everything from slight special effects to chopping and clipping video and audio so you can have a clear, concise, and fast editing process.
Sony Vegas is a very similar program to Premiere, but it has a few visual differences and has an arguably higher learning curve. Many people think Premiere is better than Sony Vegas due to its versatility and ability to link easily with other Adobe products, but Vegas is still a great tool for learning how to edit and has tools that can make for amazing audio. If you have no experience in either editing software, both have free demos you can try.
A camera is an obvious choice if you want to make a vlog, skit show, or any other type of visual video. The camera you pick is going to be up to you, and knowing exactly which camera is best will be a matter of opinion, but as a cheap and easy start, you can try using your phone. Part of knowing how to start a YouTube channel is figuring out what you can do with the things you have.
Most phones come with a nearly industry-standard camera that can definitely be used to make high-quality videos while you're getting started. Once you have made several videos and start to gain traction, we would recommend investing in a good camera, but if you are trying to get your feet wet, your phone is a fine choice.
A microphone is a must for almost every type of video style, and there are a lot of options to consider. First of all, you will not want to use the microphone on your computer or laptop. Try to find at least a low-tier USB microphone to start with such as a Blue Yeti or an M-Audio. Once you become better, definitely upgrade to something higher tier such as an XLR microphone with an audio interface like the Scarlette with an R0DE; but as a starter, a Blue Yeti is fine. Most YouTubers use this as their microphone of choice.
Now you know the basics of what you should focus on in learning how to start a YouTube channel. As long as you upload videos regularly and continue to improve at your craft, you should be a successful YouTuber.
Building a fan base is difficult and knowing exactly what your audience wants can be an obtuse task, but once you are used to it, you will have a fun job on your hands. Everyone's channel is unique in some way, and every person has their own way of portraying their message. As long as you keep your spirits up, YouTube could be your next adventure in life.