From Zero to 30K YouTube Subscribers in Six Months, How This Creator Did It

Paul O’Malley’s YouTube channel, which options fast ideas to enhance effectivity, skyrocketed to over 30,000 subscribers in just below six months. These are spectacular numbers! So how did Paul do it? We sat down with him to debate his journey and uncover the methods and methods he used to quickly develop his viewers. Get able to take notes and be taught from a YouTube success story!

The transcript under has been edited for size and readability.

Did you consciously determine to begin a YouTube Channel, or did it occur organically?

Form of just a little little bit of each. Over the previous couple of years, I’ve had a number of roles in tech, together with Microsoft. I had individuals saying to me, “You are actually good at explaining these items in a approach I can perceive… Do you wanna create YouTube content material? Possibly it is best to do these movies on-line?” And I used to all the time simply type of blow it off. After which not too long ago, I used to be in a job the place I used to be actually creating this form of video content material; quick bite-sized clips. Simply fast ideas right here and there. And so I assumed, you already know what? I am positive different individuals may make use of this content material as effectively. I made a decision to begin placing a couple of of the movies up on YouTube, and a few of them began to achieve traction; individuals observed the content material I used to be creating and put it out on blast across the social media spheres. This drastically elevated the attain that I may presumably have, and consequently, YouTube’s determined they wanna begin paying me for it on, now and again. So I could as effectively hold at it!

Did you contemplate every other video platforms except for YouTube?

I feel it was all the time going to be YouTube. I am fairly a fan of tech typically, so I would thought of different platforms, however the one platform that might be capable to give me the attain I wanted was YouTube. Vimeo is nice, nevertheless it’s extra of a business-to-business platform than a shopper platform. And for people who have began stretching out into the Fediverse with Mastodon and issues like that, there’s Peertube. However there isn’t any approach I might have over 30,000 individuals following me on Peertube within the span of 4 or 5 months, whereas I do now on YouTube.

It’s fairly wonderful that you simply grew so rapidly!

Yeah! I had a number of assist in that regard. I had some development from my very own inner networks and from my earlier roles. However I used to be considerably fortunate to have a few program managers from Microsoft really retweet a few my tweets relating to a few of the movies that I would made. And you already know, when somebody who has over 100 thousand subscribers themselves retweets one thing of yours, it tends to have a pleasant flow-on impact. Within the span of 1 week, I had six or seven thousand individuals subscribe, which, like… I used to be trying on the numbers going; what’s going on right here? And it was simply completely mind-boggling.

How do you provide you with concepts for movies?

I’ve all the time been a extremely massive fan of pushing the know-how that I’ve to its absolute limits. To mainly save me time. So I positioned my channel as fast ideas to enhance effectivity.

And I imply, heck, I’ve reprogrammed keys to do macros and issues like that. I’ve bought my mouse right here with a number of buttons set to regulate various things to hurry up my workflow just a bit bit every time. If I may save myself ten minutes a day, that might add an additional work week on the finish of the yr. I may do a heck of quite a bit with an additional week yearly. And I am positive a number of different individuals may as effectively. And so each time I discover these little hidden options or little ideas that assist individuals’s workflows be just a little bit extra seamless, I wish to share them.

One other instance, I’ve not too long ago began enjoying round with Google Docs and Google Sheets. And I will be trustworthy, within the final week or so, I’ve gone down a rabbit gap with utilizing ChatGPT inside Google Docs and issues like that. It is simply loopy to see what the know-how can do when you already know that little shortcut to leverage it. And so, hopefully, I can present somebody a tip that takes 5 minutes outta their day now however saves them 5 minutes day by day from right here till eternity.

So it is such as you’re scratching your personal itch? As an alternative of making an attempt to consider what individuals are going to be fascinated by, you share the issues which have helped you.

Actually, it may very well be one thing so simple as a keyboard shortcut that individuals do not learn about. Right through to one thing fully loopy, like having ChatGPT fully fill in lists and issues for you, proper? There are actually small issues and actually massive issues.

It may even be an accessibility function. I do not actually have any main imaginative and prescient impairments, however I do know lots of people who’ve colour blindness. Although I do not use the colour filters which might be in home windows, I’ve seen the impact that, after I flip it on for them and so they go, “Oh my God!”… I really like that gentle bulb second. Having another person say, “Oh, I may use that,” and seeing the knock-on impact for them, that is actually what drives me and has for years.

Do you’ve any pointers about how lengthy your movies must be?

I attempt to hold the video as quick as attainable. The factor that drives me insane after I go onto YouTube searching for like a how-to video is when the primary three and a half minutes is somebody going, “Do not forget to smash that like button,” after which on high of it, there’s some insane trance music enjoying within the background. Do not get me incorrect; I really like some psytrance now and again, however not after I’m looking for out the best way to recall an e mail in Outlook. I’ve simply by chance despatched this e mail. I must recollect it now. I can not spend three and a half minutes watching you discuss your channel.

So most of my movies are sub-five minutes. Numerous them are literally lower than three minutes lengthy. The longest movies I’ve completed are possibly seven minutes, and that is as a result of they’re just a little bit extra in-depth and require just a little bit extra setup beforehand. I attempt to hold it transient to the purpose but in addition clear sufficient that somebody can simply comply with alongside themselves and perceive it as I am doing it.

What’s in your video creation toolkit, and what does your recording course of seem like?

I create all my movies on Home windows as a result of Home windows is what I do know. I’ve a devoted 1080p monitor as a result of the movies that I broadcast are in 1080p. And so I like with the ability to report a full display screen.

For the display screen recording itself, I exploit a program referred to as Camtasia. It’s truthfully constructed from the bottom up for the kind of content material that I create. It makes it considerably simpler for me to zoom in on areas and issues like that. It does price just a little bit of cash, however the profit is that it is sped up my workflow by miles.

Typically talking, I’ll attempt to have a storyboard so I do know what I’ll do and discuss. Then I am going to do the display screen recording typically in a single hit. Then I am going to do my modifying, zooming in, highlighting, and squaring off issues so that individuals can see every part on the display screen as I am doing it.

After that, I exploit Audacity to do the audio recording. I simply actually play it again and do my voiceover while I am watching the recording play. The profit is that Audacity has the power to report at a better readability degree of audio in comparison with Camtasia. I’ve put sound dampening on a few the partitions, and I’ve bought massive heavy drapes to deaden the sound to ensure that every part is sweet and crisp and clear.

Subtitles are a bit extra of a course of. YouTube’s computerized subtitle functionality is okay however not tremendous correct. Funnily sufficient, I really use the Google Voice app on my cellphone. For many who occur to have a Pixel cellphone, it’s actually correct. So I am going to get the transcript from there, and, now, it sounds type of bizarre, however I put it into Microsoft Phrase after which use Microsoft Phrase to provide it a proofread and ensure the grammar is right. Then after I’m importing the video, I simply actually copy and paste the textual content in. YouTube is sensible sufficient to have the ability to sync the voice with the subtitles.

The one different device that I exploit is Figma. I’ve bought primary templates that I exploit for all of my thumbnails; the emblem of no matter product I am showcasing within the video after which possibly three or 4 phrases beside it with what the video’s about. It is tremendous straightforward for me to make these; it takes seconds.

What about your microphone?

The microphone I exploit is not tremendous costly. It is the Scarlet 2i2. It’s an XLR microphone, and so the sound high quality is a lot better than a USB mic. Typically talking, although, XLR mics can be fairly costly. My setup retails for round about 500 AUD. I’ve additionally bought just a little protect right here, which mainly helps stop reverb from across the partitions.

Shifting on to the distribution of the content material. We talked just a little bit about how different influencers have helped along with your development in subscribers. Was there an inflection level the place you knew you have been onto one thing?

Having six-figure follower accounts retweet my stuff was actually that inflection level. However there have been steps that took earlier than that, primarily based on the analytics that I used to be getting from YouTube. I am in Sydney, so Australian time zones usually are not all the time the very best, relying on the place your viewers is. I used to be trying on the analytics from YouTube to see when individuals have been watching my movies essentially the most. A number of the time, I used to be asleep or, to be completely trustworthy, sitting on the sofa, enjoying Halo. So at that time, I wanted to determine, “How am I gonna get essentially the most traction?”.

I am on Mastodon greater than every other social community. On condition that there isn’t any algorithm there, it is very a lot a matter of with the ability to discover your viewers on the proper time. That was the place Buffer got here in. Attempting to schedule a submit for Mastodon was cumbersome and really restricted in performance till Buffer got here alongside. I would already been utilizing it for Twitter, and I would been utilizing it for LinkedIn. So with the ability to schedule my posts on Mastodon and Twitter to exit at occasions after I knew I used to be gonna be capable to get some traction actually helped. I used to submit one thing on Mastodon round lunchtime for me, however the nighttime for Europe. And I used to be getting possibly 4 or 5 individuals boosting my posts or getting a couple of likes right here and there. After I was capable of begin posting content material on the time that labored greatest for my viewers, posts that used to get 20 reposts have been now getting 2,500 reposts.

So is social media the principle distribution channel to your movies?

It is largely social, I feel. I’ve family and friends who’re very nice and share it with all of their mates, and a number of former colleagues have now began reaching out to me and connecting with me by way of LinkedIn and issues like that. They usually’ve been re-sharing my content material amongst their groups internally. The community side of social networking actually comes into play there.

For instance, abruptly, I’ve grown followers and customers from a random academic district in Texas. All as a result of one one that I used to work with cherished a few my movies and began sharing them with a few of their colleagues. And so, consequently, it simply type of began spreading. And now I’ve bought just a little little bit of a following amongst educators in Texas.

Is there something that has contributed to that natural phrase of mouth? Clearly, the content material’s good. Is there anything?

I would say it’s largely the content material. I like to assist the place I can, which sounds very self-serving to say it like that, however I’ll submit on YouTube, and within the feedback, somebody will say, “Mine is not fairly working like this; I am seeing this as an alternative.” Although I can not bodily go and have a look at that individual’s laptop, I nonetheless like to assist. I randomly get tagged by individuals on Mastodon saying, “I am unsure who may help you right here, however Paul would possibly know the best way to do it”. Individuals now see me as an avenue for assist.

I’ve really gotten some fairly cool video concepts because of individuals asking me questions and asking the best way to do issues higher. If somebody’s requested me a query, I can not cease occupied with it till I determine it out. I would wish to say {that a} willingness to assist actually did drive the expansion.

To me, that sounds I imply quite a bit higher than making an attempt the everyday development hacks?

I am positive that these little ideas do work for some.

The largest tip is simply to make content material that’s priceless to individuals. Try to be constant. Individuals subscribe to channels after they know what they’re gonna get. Strive to not submit 25 movies in per week after which nothing for six months. I personally schedule not simply my social posts but in addition my YouTube posts. In the mean time, I’ve bought a little bit of spare time, so I have been creating a number of further movies. I’ve bought about six or seven weeks’ price of them already lined up, able to go.

Any pitfalls or traps for aspiring creators to keep away from?

Do not overdo it. I am an enormous cellphone nerd. My telco loves me as a result of I am going to change telephones every time a brand new cellphone comes out. I’ve had lots of people inform me, oh, mate, it is best to do cellphone evaluations and stuff like that. However then I might go into the realm of needing to report face-based video versus only a display screen recording. A display screen recording is straightforward sufficient for me to do. Including my very own video feed into it provides exponentially larger issue ranges so far as modifying and transitions are involved. What I’ve now’s working, and it is working effectively, so I’ll persist with that.

After which lastly, monetization is a tough factor to get to. The necessities have vastly elevated. I used to be very fortunate that I have been capable of attain that standing. What I might say is that after you get to that standing, it is not life-changing cash. I will be brutally trustworthy, I’ve made about ten bucks. However because the channel continues to develop and the again catalog of movies continues to increase, that passive supply of earnings will develop as effectively. I do know lots of people who get to monetization and suppose they aren’t making a lot. However stick at it, continue to grow. After which, as you proceed to develop, that income will proceed to develop as effectively.

Listed below are the most important takeaways from my dialog with Paul.

1. Focus in your area of interest of experience: Create content material that you’re keen about, and you’d wish to watch your self.

2. You do not want fancy gear however audio high quality issues: Discover a setup that’s best for you and your price range.

3. Leverage your social networks and have interaction along with your viewers: Share your content material on the precise platforms on the proper time. You by no means know if you would possibly get a retweet from an influencer.

4. Produce high quality content material constantly: Publish movies on a daily schedule and plan your movies forward of time.

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