How I Started YouTube Running Two Automotive Channels On The Side.

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June 24, 2020

Who are you and what kind of content do you create?

Hi! My name is Doris and I’m 28 years old at the time of this writing. I am based in Phoenix, Arizona and I currently run two automotive YouTube channels. One is called ‘Woman.Driven” which is my main channel in English. I then created a second channel appropriately named ‘WomanDrivenEs’ which is for a Spanish speaking audience. 

Although I would love to be a full-time content creator, I am doing this as a side hustle. I am a one-person team for the most part when it comes to filming, planning, performing and editing. I ask for help at times, but only when it’s necessary. As for my brand, the name ‘Woman.Driven’, I pretty much picked a name that meant, I am a woman that loves to drive. My brand really comes down to anyone that wants to learn, can.

Let's go down memory lane, tell us your backstory! 

It’s been 1 year and 8 months since I’ve been on YouTube. Not a long time, but not short either considering how that platform transforms and evolves monthly. Before I started my channel, I always wanted to create one related to cars. I will say I attempted it a few years back; however, I never uploaded any of the videos. I got cold feet and left it alone for some time. At that time, I just focused on Instagram as the platform just required pictures. I did not have to speak or show what I did.  

It wasn’t until I saved up enough money to get my dream car, that I decided to revisit YouTube. I told myself the day I take delivery, I will make a video the following day and post.  No more delays, just action. Part of what helped was quote I go by most of the time, within reason of course. That is “take massive action” said Tony Robbins. It can mean so much or very little, but very powerful. When making videos, you have to do it because you enjoy what you’re doing. Motivation comes from your growth and from how your fans welcome and keep you going. I just love the progression and overall growth of the channel and myself as a creator.  

How do you brainstorm ideas for your content and your advice in getting the creative juice flowing.

The content I post is different from the typical. Since most of it is educational in some capacity, I have to think about the main points of the subject. This includes explaining in detail and showing the work. This usually starts with the overall plan of the particular vehicle and the end goal for it. 

I start with a systemic plan of everything I wish to do in a car. Once I figure that part out, I associate a cost for everything. Once I have the cost, I choose what I want and then plan the video based on that. This usually follows an order that expands into the next video. This way, nothing is out of order. I usually would research if anyone has done a similar video if so, I look for ways to make it different but not too different. The times that I’ve gotten stuck, I just watch videos in my niche. That will eventually trigger an idea that you can mold on your own. 

What are the tools and platform you use to help with your brand?

When I first started, I kept expenses low as I did not know how things would turn out. My editing software of choice was Camtasia. It was easy to use; however, not the best when it comes to real editing. It did fine for a bit until I upgraded to Adobe Premiere. It took some time to learn how to use Adobe, but with YouTube at your fingertips, learning was easier. I will say it takes time to figure out an editing style. 

Brand growth is very important, so utilizing as many social platforms as possible helps every bit. I make sure all of them are consistent with the content I do and keep anything irrelevant out of the light. This way, the content matches and flows between the platforms that you use. 

With so many apps, it can be a little difficult to keep up. If the app allows scheduling, I make sure I take full advantage of that and schedule posts for the best time. This would be an hour or so before the peak number of followers or subscribers will be online for that day.

What were your fears starting out? How did you handle it? 

My main fear was giving up due to how negative people would react to my content. I feel that is everyone’s fear; although, I could be wrong. Dealing with my first set of negative comments was a bit frustrating. I felt like responding; however, I held back at first. I just focused on responding to the positive ones. Now when I get them, I ignore for the most part, but some just need to hear what I think about their opinion. 

Recording in private or public isn’t much of a problem. It was more speech-related. Getting into a rhythm is a bit challenging. So, I’ve naturally progressed overtime to find out what works and conveys my passion and excitement for things I do. Editing my videos helps with picking up certain things I do that I can improve upon. The only way to get better is to keep moving forward.

How did you build your brand to where it is now, take us through your process.

The hardest thing is starting. Once you do that, all else takes time. I first started to post every other day on IG. This was before I started a YT channel. Growth was okay. I wasn’t taking it seriously as I did not have a real plan of making a brand. I just liked the name I created and wanted to feature my cars and others. 

The hardest part for me was the pictures. I did not have anyone available when I had the time to take pictures. I had a friend that would do it when he had the time, but that was rare. So, I had to stretch my photos until I could get new ones. Not having content to post  slows anyone’s growth. I didn’t realize what that meant until I started to gain traction on Instagram. 

Getting to 100 followers or subs is a bit involved. Some can get lucky; for others, it can take a long time. I can say getting 100 followers on IG or YT took way longer than getting 200. I think the type of content and frequency is the key. Social apps love consistency, if you have it, they will support it. I learned this way too late; however, it makes things easier now. 

For someone who wants to get into content creation, what is your advice?

My advice would be start early with creating a brand that spans across all popular social media apps. The content can be the same, just tailor it to the platform. This way its consumption would be native. I wish I did this from the start, but it took time to come up with a strategy that worked. 

I’ve made mistakes, a lot of them. Mistakes have delayed video postings and projects set to start at a certain time. Mainly because of the videos I do, I am learning as I go. So naturally it will take longer than usual as it’s something new for me to figure out.

Don’t give up, even though it feels like you should. Just know that if you do, you still have to deal with it again.

I’ve taken days to finish a video simply because it was a difficult task. No matter what, pull through. 

How did you finally commit to X platform rather than your regular day job?

At the moment, I still have a job. The hours are a little weird, so the flexibility is there, but only for a moment. I have a number in mind that I need to reach a month before I take the steps to focus full-time on YouTube. It’s close, but I want to be over that amount by 40% to be more than safe. 

It’s a large commitment I feel. Making videos as a hobby or side gig is different than having a reliable job. One provides a bit more comfort in consistency than the other. Focusing solely on YouTube as the main source of income means, you get paid by your actions. The mindset is very different and will take time to understand that. 

Tell us your best milestones in being a content creator.

One of the biggest milestones for me was passing the 100k subscriber count before making a year on YouTube. I was so happy when that happened. A lot of work went into that as I finally reached my goal. My biggest milestone to date is completing the collection of cars I wanted to have on my channel. Never did I think I would be able to get them in such a short period. I still can’t believe I have them in my garage. 

I feel the ultimate milestone would be when I can focus on YT full-time. I feel I can get there this year. I’d have to be really comfortable with how the channel is progressing for me to take that step. I have that goal set, so I’m doing what I can to make sure I can meet it.

What are your marketing strategies to grow your brand?

Marketing is one of those things that take a bit of time to learn. Not all tactics will work and finding a different and unique approach is key. At first, I had no idea how to grow my channel. Everyone says post, post and post. That is very true; however, if you can’t get people to watch or find you, it won’t help. 

What I did is look around the niche I was in and started to figure out what was missing and how I can incorporate that into my videos and brand. I also wanted to capture a certain age group that would be invested in future content and videos I put out. I focused more on quality than just any type of video. Once I figured my plan of action, I use Instagram and Facebook as my main marketing apps. This will in turn drive more traffic to my videos and grow my presence between platforms. 

Unfortunately, I have yet to collab with anyone. I would love the opportunity; however, I feel for what I do, it’s not needed. I’ve experienced tremendous growth without having to collab. The one thing I have against collabs, is the fact that your viewers, may not like the type of content or personality of who you bring on or vice versa. That’s not to say you won’t get followers or subs; the issue is they may not watch or interact with your content. Quality and engaging fans are better than vanity numbers, at least for me.

How do you handle brand deals and sponsorships? 

It depends on how the approach is. If a brand reaches out to you, it’s always easier to engage and speak about terms. They have ideas, products, and a number in mind. It all just takes a bit of negotiating for both parties to be happy. 

I only work with brands that will directly benefit the channel and its viewers. So, if it’s related to what I do and if it makes sense, I will explore it. I won’t say additional income helps, it does, but not at the expense of promoting something irrelevant on my channel. If the brand is giving you free products, I feel there is no need for monetary compensation. If they want you to drive traffic away from your video and onto their site, then it makes sense you get paid with the potential reach your video will have. 

The best way is to offer something in exchange that you know will benefit the brand more than you. At the end of the day, they use your platform for marketing and usually invest more money than you will on them, so fair is fair. Go extra and above if you can. This makes it easier for them to work with you in the future.

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