For today’s episode, I wanted to go over something that happened to me that made me think quite a bit about how I’m approaching content creation. I’m always a firm believer of working hard and working smart but that’s not always a recipe for success.
Let’s take streaming for example. The vast majority of people can stream regularly for many hours every day and still not find an increase in viewership many years later. The same goes for YouTube as well. You can be uploading videos regularly and still not find an increase in subscribers. There are people who manage to find success just by working hard but they are far fewer in number than the people who do not.
Here are some facts to show you the reality of the situation. In February of 2020, there were 3.8 million unique broadcasters on Twitch. As of March 2020, there were 41,100 Partners. 1.08% of the broadcaster base made partner. The literal 1%. If anything, that number should be a little bit lower because there will have been an increase to the number of unique broadcasters by March. To make partner, one of the toughest requirements to meet is to have 75 average concurrent viewers. So even if you did barely manage to make partner, there’s no guarantee for growth or a reliable income at those numbers. (numbers taken from https://www.businessofapps.com/data/twitch-statistics/)
The reality is, it is very hard to find success as a content creator. It can seem a bit daunting when faced with how hard it is to actually find success. So the question remains, what can I do to increase my chances of finding success?
Enter this week’s epiphany moment. I’ll start by telling you what happened to me earlier this week that got my brain working, where I saw a glimpse of light and had brief moment of clarity. As most people would probably not know, I am the host of four podcasts and I post regularly on the podcast subreddit on the weekly submission thread to see if I can get any more exposure. What happened instead, was a user contacted me to see if I was interested in doing a review swap. I told him, honestly, that I was more interested in getting reviews from actual listeners and that I would want to earn every positive review I received.
We then went on to have a pleasant conversation, I checked out his podcast, and left it a positive review. I checked his show out later and it jumped from 2 positive reviews to 28 on the first week of releasing the show. I don’t even have one positive review, let alone any review! And there it was, the road to success opening up in front of me. This man had figured it out. The key to success for podcasting wasn’t in creating good content (although this definitely does help). The key to success was in increasing exposure for your show and getting enough views and reviews to make it to new and noteworthy section on Apple Podcasts. This will net you even more views because of the increased exposure and discoverability due to being on the list.
I had devoted all my time to making my podcasts, spending at least 3 hours editing every episode, and thinking of new shows to create. I used to even spend 3 hours or so making each episode’s album art. All of this, to no avail. I could spend years doing this and end up with the same result. Where as this guy, he spent a lot of his time (after making the show obviously), in reaching out to others directly, making use of Reddit to target a specific audience group that would probably be open to leaving a review, and making sure his podcast was discoverable. He achieved a higher level of success in that one week, than I did in entire months.
The key here, was that you have to go after success. You can’t just sit and wait for it to come to you. That happens very infrequently. I’m not saying it’s impossible, I’m just saying it’s highly unlikely. You can keep grinding, keep making content, and keep doing your thing but nothing may ever change. You have to go out there and chase after success.
That means for whatever it is you are doing, you need to focus just as much time and effort on being discoverable and getting exposure. On Twitch, you need to spend just as much time streaming, as you do building a community. You need to go watch and network with other streamers, join discords, and use whatever means necessary to get even one more person to check your channel out. Whether they stay is up to the quality of your content obviously, but there’s also the notion of perceived value, which we will go over next time. When you become active in another person’s Twitch channel, they will be more likely to follow you back or even host you and raid you. Will every streamer do this? No, but the ones that do are the ones that will make the difference. This is very similar to the world of sales. Not every sales pitch will be successful. In fact, most will end in failure and rejection, but the ones that do come through, make up most of the revenue.
The same concept can be applied anywhere. For YouTube, be more active and comment in other people’s channels. Be more visible, provide more value. The difficult part is finding the methods that work. There’s no shortcuts here folks. You have to get out there and try everything. You’ll make mistakes, you’ll face rejection, but you will succeed. And with every success, you are one step closer to reaching critical mass where you can create a self sustainable business model so you can keep creating to your heart’s content.
The takeaway here is that you can’t wait for success, you have to go out and get it. Don’t get stuck in the rut of just churning out content, spend just as much time on the things that actually get you growth. There is an audience out there for you, you just have to go out and find them.
Thank you so much for dropping by, I really do appreciate it. If you have any questions, comments, things you would like for me to cover, please feel free to drop a comment down below. I’ll give credits to the show I mentioned before, it was Shooting Breezes by Brad and Jacqui. Thank you once again for dropping by, I hope you guys are staying safe and sane in these trying times, and as always, catch you guys next time.