I do not enjoy sitting analysing statistics all day long, but from time to time it is important to review things. When I began to analyse traffic stats for my technology channel recently, it quickly became apparent that I need to change things moving forward.
The channel continues to grow every week, however I am not growing fast enough. Certainly not for the time I am investing into the channel.
Without doubt, I am at a crossroads.
Covering Too Many Topics
When I initially launched my tech channel, I mainly focused on travel, business related issues and WordPress. It made sense at the time as I was backpacking through South America and was still updating this blog regularly.
Once I got back to the UK, I started focusing on technology topics instead. The channel covers a wide number of tech topics including cameras, smartphones, tablets, laptops, computers, graphics cards, hard drives, gaming and more.
I have always enjoyed covering a wide range of topics on the channel as it keeps things interesting for me, however this decision has undoubtedly cost me many subscribers.
It is much easier to grow a YouTube channel that focuses on one topic as you do not alienate subscribers. Subscribers who enjoy my videos about smartphones, may not care about cameras. Likewise, though who enjoyed my laptop reviews, may not be interested in gaming.
Therefore, when people subscribe to your channel for different reasons, you risk alienating a large percentage of your subscribers every time you upload a video.
Moving forward, I may have to start being more selective about the topics I cover. If not, subscriber growth will continue to stagnate.
Following the Latest Trends On YouTube
Covering too many topics is one reason why my channel is not growing at the rate I want, but a bigger reason is the “Type of Products” that I have been covering.
A quick look at my stats shows that news videos perform really well on YouTube. From my end, these videos take considerably less time to produce too.
Product reviews and tutorials do well too, but it is clear that only newer products are generating thousands of views. If I review a product that was not released within the last few months, I sometimes struggle to get 100 views. That is abysmal, especially when you consider these videos sometimes take a day to produce.
You may be thinking “Why not just post news videos all the time?”.
Whilst there are YouTube channels who do just that, it is not something I ever wanted. Ideally, I would like my channel to focus mostly on reviews and tutorials with occasional news videos on stories that interest me.
The exception to this rule is live streams. I am a huge fan of doing live streams and talking discussing the latest tech news with subscribers. Unfortunately, it is not something that would grow my channel. It does help me connect with subscribers, but as live streams are long, their recordings generate few views afterwards.
Here's a summary of my review problem.
- Companies offer products to me to review every day of the week, however the products that are offered rarely generate views
- These reviews still take a lot of time to research, record, edit and upload
- My YouTube channel is not popular enough to receive review offers from companies that manufacturer new and popular products
- Whilst these new products would generate more views, I would need to spend thousands on them
- The cost of buying new products can be mitigated by selling them after the reviews have been completed
- Selling products is time-consuming and you sometimes lose 30% of the cost when you sell the product on
With an unlimited budget, I could continually buy new products to generate views. Obviously, I don't have that an unlimited budget, however I do not want to get caught in the review rat race with other YouTubers anyways.
I believe I need to take a stand back and rethink how I approach my technology YouTube channel so that I am more productive with my time.
- I should spend more time updating this blog in order to increase income
- Additional income can be put towards reviewing better products
- Product quality should be improved – Less is more!
There is no doubt that I need to shake things up and switch the direction of my channel, but there are positives to be taken from my YouTube journey over the last two years too. For example, the quality of my videos has generally improved during this time and my channel continues to grow.
It does not matter if you are developing a blog, a YouTube channel or an online store. Like every project, there is a risk of reaching a place of comfort and running on auto-pilot.
I have been guilty of this. Every week I have been churning out content without really thinking about the direction I was taking my channel.
Whilst I am acutely aware of the mistakes I have made, I am positive about the future. I have learned a lot over the last few years and I believe the experience I have gained will serve me well.
Moving forward, I need to think more about how I advance this channel. Traffic is always easier to come by if you publish content about trending topics, however my long-term goal is a loyal subscriber base. Therefore, I do have to give strong consideration to talking about less topics.
Thanks for reading.