What do you want to do when you graduate? Your options are endless, whether you want to work for a large company, an SME, a start-up, start your own company, join your family business, go into further study, start a side hustle or have a break… One thing for sure is that careers are not what they used to be and you don’t have to go into a 9 to 5 job to be successful.
We’ve previously looked at what it’s like to work in a start-up, so this week we caught up with John Frazer, a Henley Business School graduate, about what it’s like to start your own YouTube channel!
We’ll leave it up to John to tell you about the channel, as well as a few tips about how to become a millionaire…
What is your YouTube channel about, and what is its aim?
The channel is called Magnates Media, and is aimed at ambitious under 30’s who want to make more money, be more successful, and level up their lives. Think of it as the Netflix of business and self-development, except it’s 100% free.
There are three things the channel aims to do:
- Summarise the key lessons from the world’s top performers. (I’ll sort through the overwhelming amount of books, courses and information out there so you don’t have to).
- Present the information in unique and engaging videos. (An example of this is a series looking at business and life lessons from unlikely TV characters, like Rick & Morty and Michael Scott).
- Document my own entrepreneurial journey. (I believe the internet has made it possible for anyone to become rich, but actually being able to watch the process of what someone else is doing – and any lessons/mistakes on the way – can hopefully be a huge time saver for others).
Since university students are probably the group of people I think would most benefit, the link is http://youtube.com/magnatesmedia if you are interested in subscribing!
Why did you start the channel?
I strongly believe that right now attention = money. I also believe that there is no better platform than YouTube to build an engaged audience. Unlike other social media where posts are forgotten after a few days, every video posted on YouTube is an asset that can bring you traffic (and thus money) for years to come.
I started the channel as a bit of an experiment, just to see if it was as easy as it looked. It wasn’t. However, there was enough positive feedback to give me encouragement to try and grow it as a side hustle, with a view to one day taking it full time, or ideally integrating it into a business I’m running.
Do you make money from your channel?
At 1,000 subscribers YouTube start paying you ad revenue for your videos, meaning the more views your videos get, the more money you earn. I started properly focusing on YouTube on October 1st 2019, and I’m currently at just over 650 subscribers (and hope to be at 1,000 and earning ad revenue by the start of 2020).
However, a common misconception with YouTube is that ad revenue is the primary source of income. Most YouTubers make even more money from sponsorships, merchandise, Patreon etc. You can start all of these at any subscriber level – for example on an early video I made with just 200 views, I made £50 from it in affiliate commission by linking to a sponsored product I liked.
However, the absolute best way to make money with YouTube is to integrate your channel into part of your business. This is my plan. If you can build a YouTube channel that helps attract your ideal business clients or customers, that’s when you start to win big. As an example, I know one YouTuber who made over 1 million pounds in product sales last year from the free YouTube traffic on their channel. I am not saying that’s a typical example, but it is possible.
How easy/difficult has it been to manage it?
The great thing with a YouTube channel is you are fully in control of how you run it, what you make, and when you post it. So, if you are running it as a hobby, it can be very easy and passive to manage if that’s what you want.
However, as I’m trying to grow the channel as quickly as possible, it has been fairly time consuming to regularly make videos and promote them, and I’ve had to set aside a couple of hours every day to solely focus on it. I’m in a slightly advantageous position because I’m working full time on my own business projects and so I have a little more flexibility, but I think anyone with enough drive to build a channel could fit it in with enough organisation.
How do you stay motivated?
I think it’s the same with anything in life, you have to celebrate the little wins, and use them as fuel to stay focused on the bigger picture. The problem with YouTube is people get discouraged when they realise how slow that initial growth is, but the reality is every big creator went through that… some of the world’s largest youtubers like Pewdiepie and Mr. Beast both made well over 100 videos before reaching their first 1,000 subscribers.
However, you can hit a point with YouTube where things start to snowball – maybe you get one video that goes viral, and suddenly you get an influx of views which causes your other videos to be promoted more, and so the cycle repeats. When you know you’re potentially only one video away from that happening, it’s easy to stay motivated if you’re making videos on a topic you enjoy.
Did you learn the skills you need for the channel yourself, or did you learn it from someone?
Ironically one of the best ways to learn about YouTube is from YouTube itself. Everything I’ve learnt to do with making the channel (from how to edit videos to how to promote them) has been self-taught through the internet. The truth is you just pick things up as you go along, and so you’re constantly learning new transferable skills as your channel grows.
Do you have any tips for anyone wanting to start their own YouTube channel?
Lots – in fact, another series on my channel is looking at lessons we can all take from hugely successful YouTubers and how they’ve built large followings. However, my 3 biggest tips for starting out would be:
- Be original. By all means take inspiration from your favourite channels, but it’s vey difficult to grow if you’re just trying to copy what others are doing. You need to inject your own unique personality into your videos, and try to do something a little different to stand out.
- Pick a niche for the channel. Rather than just talking about everything and anything, it’s much easier to build an engaged audience if your videos are all loosely built around a theme like fitness, gaming etc, so people know what they are signing up for when they subscribe. Of course, make sure it’s something you’re genuinely interested in and enjoy talking about.
- Just get started. You learn the most by taking action. It’s a scary thought posting your first video, but I can honestly say that in a short-time I’ve learnt so much, and YouTube is already opening doors for me and helping me connect with people I’d never have thought possible.
What’s your best tip to become a millionaire?
The only realistic way to become a millionaire is by earning passive income. The problem is that from an early age we are taught that the way to make money is by trading our time for a set wage (£10 an hour, £20,000 a year etc). This means your earnings are always capped, and although you can very slowly work your way up the corporate ladder, even the highest paid jobs are unlikely to make you a millionaire.
Passive income is the concept that once you create something of value, it can make you money without further work. One of my favourite ways of doing that is creating a digital product, as once you have produced it once, it can be sold limitless times with no extra input needed from you.
So, after studying countless millionaires, my best tip for all of us to get there ourselves is to reverse engineer success. You need to look at how other people have built passive income streams and try to replicate them, because a standard 9-5 job will never get you there alone no matter how hard you work.
A bonus tip for becoming a millionaire is to subscribe to Magnates Media on YouTube! 😉 In all seriousness though, my hope is that with the channel I can share all my findings on these topics that most people never get told about. I really believe university is the perfect time to try and start a side hustle, and with all of the amazing support of Henley Careers, there’s no better time to get started than now.
Thank you for reading this, and feel free to drop me a message on LinkedIn if I can ever help out with anything! (Or, if you do start a YouTube channel yourself, drop me the link and I’ll gladly be one of your first subscribers!)
John Frazer, Magnates Media Founder