There are some people who are 100% sure they are only going to do this for fun. That’s great. I’d still advise you to read the rest of this article just to make sure you aware of some of the pitfalls. If you are only 99% sure this is just for fun and you NEVER want to make money from it, then this article will be one of the most important reads of your early content creation days.
There are decisions you are going to make today that you cannot undo. There are going to be decisions that aren’t a big deal. I want you to know about some of these pitfalls before you start down the road of content creation as a hobbyist, only to realize when you do decide you want to make money with it, you screwed yourself over at the very beginning. Not everything you do can be easily undone.
It is really important for you to sit down and figure out what your goals are with your content creation before you start, because in the early days of your journey you are going to make some decisions that are going to set you down on specific paths. Some of those paths you can go back to the start, and others are more permanent. Either way its important to have a goal for what you want to do with your channel
Goal: Having Fun
If your goal is to have fun as a content creator than you need very little of the advice I’m going to share. The reason why is if you are doing this to have fun you can do that in less than 15 minutes of prep time. Set up your camera, set up your microphone and go start creating. Maybe you read some of the stuff I present here, maybe you don’t. If you are 100% sure your goal of having fun is never going to change then go out there and start. Have fun, take your lumps, graduate from the school of hard knocks, and just go forward with it.
If, however, you think there is even a 1% chance that your goal might change and you might want to make money off your content creation; then you NEED to consider a lot more things before you get started.
Goal: Making a Profit
If your goal is to get into Content Creation to make money or to make a living you have to realize a few things.
First, you are starting a business. You will have to spend a lot of your free time learning about business rules, business law, tax requirements, etc. This can be both good and bad. The good part of it is that you will find a lot of your expenses suddenly become tax deductions and write-offs. The bad part is that you are going to be investing a lot of time into things that aren’t going to help the quality of your content creation, although it will certainly help you steer the future of your Content Creation Career.
Second, you have to face a cold hard reality that 99% of Content Creators never reach the point where they can sustain themselves with their content creation income. This isn’t because its impossible, or because the system is rigged, or because Twitch sabotages you, or because YouTube stifles you, these are all the excuses that people give when they don’t make it because if they can’t make it, they don’t want to see anyone else make it.
The truth is that 99% of channels fail because the creators behind those channels don’t really have their heart in it.
Like everything else in life, you have to be hungry, you have to hustle, you have to put everything into your dreams. I talk about this a lot when I talk about motivation.
In fact, I have a video, totally unrelated to Content Creation skills, but very specifically directed towards Motivation for Content creators that you might want to check out, especially if you aren’t sure if this is going to be for you, or maybe exactly because it is for you and you want to get a kick in the backside to get you going and keep you going.
For Fun or For Profit?
It doesn’t matter if you are going to start making content as a hobby, or you are going to do it as a side-hustle and a way to extra money, or you want to eventually be a full-time content creator living off your creations. Everyone starts from the same square one.
Just so you know the quality of the level of the advice you are getting, I am a content creator with six-years’ experience in YouTubing, three-years’ experience as a Twitch Streamer, I have a background in marketing and project management. I do not live off of my content creation money, but if I was single, I could just about do this full time and survive, maybe even thrive, but just barely. Why is that important? I find it important to tell you that because doing this full time for a living is hard, this is a job. It’s a fun job, but it is a job, you have to respect it as a job.
Things to consider in the long term
Like I said on the landing page, there’s no real good order to present this material in. A lot of it is going to be bouncing around. I will tell you right now that there are one-way doors in your progression, and the first one is your name.
If you are 100% sure, and I mean 100% sure this is just a hobby, then don’t worry about your brand name. If you think, if there is even a 1% chance you might want to do this for income, make sure to check out The Importance of your Name article.
If you are new and you want to know which growth goals to set, why to set them, and what to do with your new channel, check out the Setting Realistic Growth Goals articles, which will have separate goals for Streaming and YouTube. This article is due out sometime in August 2021.