I’ve just started my YouTube channel and it has been a huge learning curve. I’ve managed to make all the mistakes new YouTubers make and more.
But that’s not a bad thing. When it comes to YouTube you need to make mistakes, you can’t avoid it. It’s an important part of the process. That’s how you learn, so don’t be afraid of making mistakes.
Your process at the start will be in continual development. You’ll be perfecting your process with every new video.
Having said that, knowing the common mistakes makes that learning process a lot faster. So these are the mistakes I made and others have made too that you can try to avoid.
1. Making Variety Content
When you haven’t picked a niche your channel lacks direction. But sometimes we’re still figuring out what content we want to produce.
Deciding earlier on and sticking to a niche will improve your growth much faster. Most subscribers will want to be clear on what they are subscribing to.
If you’re mixing it up with vlogs, gaming and cooking video after video you’re not going to grow. Now this works if you are an established brand and your personality is your brand.
But for most new YouTubers this is not the case and you still need to build that relationship over years before you have fans that will watch anything you put out.
2. Not Working More on Thumbnail Design
Neglecting thumbnail design is one of the most overlooked mistakes new youtubers make.
Thumbnail design is no different to packaging design. You need to have a design that captures attention fast.
When you go into a shop, the products on the shelf have all been designed to compete for your attention.
By using different logos, color schemes and other design cues, lots of thought has been put into grabbing your eye.
There is a lot of science and psychology behind choosing different designs and colors for instance. Utilising leading lines and certain colors have dramatic effects on how they are perceived by customers.
3. Letting Fear Hold You Back
It has taken me years, literally years, to actually post my first proper YouTube video.
I’ve uploaded in the past, but they were compilation videos with as little of me in the video as possible.
I’ve found all sorts of inventive ways to keep me from making progress to even start planning and creating a video.
From procrastinating, excuses, delay tactics I managed to stop myself for years. And once I finally posted my first video I enjoyed it so much.
That adrenaline rush when it goes live, I love it. Now the key is consistency.
I talk about this in much more depth in my article ‘Overcoming the Fear of Starting YouTube’.
4. Copying Other YouTubers
This is a common trap lots of new YouTube creators fall into when they first start.
There is nothing wrong being inspired by some of your favorite YouTube creators.
The program comes when you take another YouTuber’s ideas wholesale and pass it off as your own original idea. You see someone do something you like and say I’ll do that too.
You’ll never learn this way. The best way is to take the ideas you are inspired by and turn them into your own. Incorporate it in your own style and brand.
By doing this, you create something familiar but new, and different. If you only ever aspire to be as good as someone you’ll never surpass them.
5. Done Is Better Than Perfect
I’ve got a whole article on this and I go much more in depth there. But I’ll break it down here.
I’m a perfectionist. It’s not a good thing. Pursuing perfection is chasing the impossible. You’ll never get there, so you never finish.
You’ve got to understand that you’ll never be satisfied. You’ve just got to publish.
In art, a painting is never finished, we just stop working on it.
Get your video to a point where it’s good enough and post it. Learn from whatever mistakes you made and make the next video better.
This is how progress is made.
6. Not Making Videos You Are Passionate About
When you are picking a niche it can be a struggle making sure the chosen niche is a balance of something you enjoy doing and something that has money in it.
You might love stamp collecting, but there might not be a big enough audience online to make an income from.
So what happens when you pick a niche you’re not as passionate about but makes a good income?
Well as with all ventures, when you run into a rut or issues arise, having to grind through creating content you’re not particularly passionate about is much much harder.
The opposite is as hard. If you’re making videos about something you are passionate about but not getting much traction with views it’s disheartening and can ruin your passion for the niche.
7. Not Networking
Creating a YouTube video can be quite lonely. When I think about it, I planned my videos myself, filmed them myself, and edited them myself.
I have people around me to talk to, but they aren’t YouTube people, and so YouTube can be a lonely profession.
Before the pandemic I had joined a few groups of London film makers and we met up a few times in London to talk and it’s a lot of fun talking with like minded people.
Sharing the same struggles and successes was fantastic and you suddenly feel less lonesome.
We had planned to meet up again to collaborate and this is a fantastic opportunity as it spurs you on to create and keep up with your peers.
Knowing when you are making the same mistakes new YouTubers make means you can quickly steer your channel back on course. I hope this article has been informative and helped.
Check out my YouTube channel to see how I’ve overcome the mistakes I made in this article.
Artist / Photographer / Videographer