We had quite the amazing workshop with some special guests! Utah has one of the most thriving YouTuber communities. Did you know that? We were lucky enough to have some of the best at our workshop to answer questions; Nadia Khristean, Allie Gardner, Maddie Wilson, Monica Moore Smith (her mom and business partner Allison subbed for her since she couldn't make it!) and Nicole Jordyn. Here's a recap of the questions asked by attendees and livestream viewers. The answers are my shorthand notes taken at the time of the workshop that will hopefully make sense! If I noted who actually said the statement, their name will be referenced.
Q: What made you want to start?
Monica/Allison: Monica was active in musical theatre. Someone asked her to audition for film, it snowballed from there, right after high school, she was cast in Saturday's Warrior. She went back to college and wanted a way to keep creating content for potential casting jobs.
Allie: It started as an accident. My best friend passed away, I was devastated, I had always done music but had never "put it out there". A way for me to deal with the pain was to "run away" from the pain. So I went to Mexico, recorded a video of "I am a Child of God" in Mayan. It exploded on Facebook! I decided it was selfish for me to hide rather than just go for it.
Maddie: I always knew that I wanted to be a singer. I started in a choir when only 3 years old, started performing for local events when YouTube was first becoming "a thing". My dad suggested I start a YouTube channel. I begged him. We put up home videos of me singing and playing guitar (which have since been taken down!)
Nicole: I started a year and a half ago, I always make videos and was posting them on Facebook. I didn't realize I could post on YouTube.
Nadia: I was always singing since I was little. I wanted to do more with music. When I was 11 years old, I talked with my dad about another 11 year old girl who's dad wouldn't come home for Christmas. I felt like I found my purpose.
Q: What type of financial investment is expected to get started?
Monica/Allison: Just start! You'll learn more as you do it than you will learn if you just think about doing it. Make it as efficient as possible. I (Allison) do all the video editing but we hire someone else to do all the filming and audio. Facebook is a think. Don't post covers there because they aren't monetizing yet.
It's a lot of work
Understand copyright restrictions!
The value of consistency, networking and collaborating helps build your channel.
Not about numbers, it's about loyalty. Finding loyal followers.
Allie: Be personable, develop relationships in a loving and genuine way
Monica/Allison: Monica wishes she had started sooner than she did.
Nadia: One of my biggest regrets is putting a bunch of money into the first video. People love growing with you. Bootstrapping - don't spend money until you've validated your idea, find your niche.
Become friends, support them, be a part of their community, be persistent, work hard, be patient. Bring people up too, see the potential in someone else and bring them up.
Q: What about creating a separate name?
Nadia: I like my middle name better than my last name because it's different. I also like it as a security measure. I like that I can keep it separate as a business.
It might be harder for people to find you.
You'll sometimes get weird messages. It's good to have a filter; someone who can read and delete/block for you.
Don't take rude comments seriously.
Find videographers by watching videos and look at credits
Q: What have been your biggest hurdles?
Allie: Building credibility to be a part of other peoples projects
Maddie: I'm a huge introvert, I've had to get out of my comfort zone to perform, connect with others and be a part of the community
Monica/Allison: Time. Since this is not Monica's full time gig, finding time, staying organized and being efficient has been the biggest hurdle
Nicole: Technological hurdles, understanding adsense, keywords, figuring out algorithms, understanding YouTube strategies, etc. I had to figure it out and watched other people's videos
Nadia: So many hurdles! Trying to figure out best way to manage time, job, school, etc. I use the principles of planning breakdown; yearly goals, monthly goals, weekly goals, daily goals. The only way to manage is one bite at a time.
Q: What are some podcasts and books that are helpful?
Allie: Peter Hollens Creator Academy is amazing
Nadia: Networking. Utah is 3rd biggest YouTuber community. Join UtahUtubers and Digital Creators Facebook groups. Go to CVX Live, Vidcon, etc. View yourself as a business. Find monetization opportunities and other revenue streams.
Nicole: Studied people that I admire, watched their old videos
Monica/Allison: Derral Eves, social media examiner, freeposting, not YouTube specific