So about a month ago I received an email from YouTube about a YouTube Space event in Sydney to help content creators (aka “YouTubers”) become well-versed on YouTube.
At first I was like, “pfft, spam email” because my YouTube channel isn’t big in terms of audience size – so as if YouTube would invite me to anything. Then I did a little bit more research into it and it seemed pretty legit.
So yeah, I was invited to the first ever pop-up YouTube Space in Sydney. Which, you know. Cool. Getting recognised by YouTube as someone who’s relevant enough to go to a YouTube event is nice.
The pop-up event spanned over a period of five days and was held at AFTRS (Australian Film Television and Radio School) at Moore Park. Each day there were different seminars and workshops so I had to register for the ones that I wanted to attend. I registered for three – 1) Creator day; 2) Production Workshop and; 3) Content Lab. I only ended up going to two.
The first was Creator Day which really just covered all the basics of setting up a YouTube channel and growing an audience. It was stuff that I kind of already knew but it was nice to get a reiteration of what YouTube considers ‘good practice’ and learning some tips about the YouTube algorithm.
The biggest takeaways I got from the Creator Day seminar were that I need to:
- Make better thumbnails that are eye-catching and spark curiosity even when they’re on mobile (as apparently most people watch YouTube on mobile these days)
- Be more descriptive in the description box so that they do better in search rankings
- Utilise info cards/end-screens and have better call-to-actions
- Have a consistent upload schedule as apparently YouTube algorithms rank consistency very highly!
Other than that, everything else that they taught I was already implementing. Things like creating playlists, replying to comments and building a community.
I skipped the production workshop because I’ve been feeling like poop the past few weeks and couldn’t pluck up the energy or motivation to get my butt out of bed and travel for 2 hours to get to Moore Park (come on Sydney, get your public transport accessibility together)!
Apparently the workshop was really good though as they taught more technical things like three-point-lighting and how to record good audio etc. So I felt guilty that I didn’t go – but that guilt made me be more productive that day and I ended up editing my ‘Shopping is better than relationships?! – Read Swedish with Leonie’ video instead!
The third workshop I went to was the Content Lab. This time I had Mattias with me so I didn’t feel as anxious (yet). I thought the workshop was really fun! I met a lot of other content creators that day and it was fun to hear their YouTube stories and how they implement strategies for their channels.
It’s cool how we all have YouTube in common but aside from that, we all have completely different interests. There were people who made health and fitness videos, people who did book reviews, people who specialised in boats and fishing and people who made high production skits. There were also some clear-cut douchebaggery kind of personalities but that’s no surprise considering it is YouTube (Sam Pepper, anyone?).
We had to work in groups the entire day and focus on one channel to figure out how we could make it better…
… And then we had to bloody present the damn thing to the entire class.
Dead. I died. Oh my gosh did I die.
Everyone in my group was so confident at public speaking (there was a gosh darn actor in our group with a very nifty New Zealand accent) and then there was I – timid, shaky and sweaty. WE HAD TO SPEAK INTO A MICROPHONE, EVEN. And there was a moment when I tried to make a joke but no one laughed. Oh my GOSHH. It was such a traumatic experience and just thinking about it now makes me cringe at myself. It will be one of those moments in my life that I will forever remember even though I don’t want to. Speaking in public is not my forte which is kind of funny considering I make videos for a such a public platform…
ANYWAY. Aside from being a colossal embarrassment and total failure, the major takeaways I got from Content Lab were that I need to:
- Be more collaborative
- Be more discoverable by focusing on my titles and meta data in the description
- Think more about how I can create “Hero” content to attract more people to my channel
- Create more “inspirational” and helpful content
- Figure out the true mission behind my channel and what it is that I want to achieve
Overall, I feel like my YouTube channel can really do with some improvements. That being said, since I come from a Communications background, I feel like I got most of the fundamentals down already especially when it comes to content strategy. Also, I’m a perfectionist (a very impatient perfectionist) so I like to make sure that everything on my channel has a purpose from the very beginning and is executed 155%.
Of course, there’s always more to learn and I have to say… I feel a lot more inspired to take my channel to the next level. Really, I just enjoyed meeting new people (surprise, surprise, coming from me, the little introverted and socially awkward turtle).
So yep, thanks YouTube for inviting me to the YouTube Space in Sydney.
Also, for the free swag and good food! Let’s hope this space has a more permanent place in Sydney so that us Aussie content creators don’t get left in the dust. We already have slow Internet as it is.
Anyway, if you haven’t yet… please do subscribe to my YouTube channel!
This is my favourite YouTube video I’ve made so far… mainly ‘coz Eurovision.
Until next time,
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