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5 Ways to Become Successful on YouTube

Updated on August 13, 2020
Chriswillman90 profile image

Krzysztof is a YouTube researcher with over a decade of experience analyzing and uncovering YouTube trends, challenges, and media.


5 Tricks to a Successful YouTube Career

If you didn't know, YouTubers or "internet people" produce and upload video content on

Their job is to entertain, persuade, and educate their audiences through creative content but anyone can do that right?

Anyone can be a YouTuber, but only 1-2% have the skills/audience to make YouTube a full time job.

So what makes a successful internet star...

These 5 basic tips will give you some insights into YouTube stardom.

1. Be Creative

The most successful YouTube channels and careers came from original/creative content.

Think about your favorite YouTubers and what you like most about them...

Is their content humorous...does it have something others it always changing in order to keep you interested?

Let's examine top YouTuber "Pewdiepie" and his "Let's Play" content.

What are Let's Plays who may ask?

They're a genre where the creator plays a video game for their audience with often playful, outrageous commentary. Think of them as sports commentary where we watch the event unfold but don't actually play.

There are hundreds of similar channels involved in this style, but why is he number one?

The genre may not be original but his humor, genuine reactions to video game genres like horror, humility, and international appeal (he's originally from Sweden) changed the concept of the "Let's Play" YouTube genre and made it unique.


2. Be Authentic

Authenticity means every piece of content you upload represents who you are and what you are passionate about.

Your audience will easily be able to distinguish the honest from the fake, and it's important to be honest with who you are and what you are presenting.

Sadly many amateurs think that copying/pasting someone else's content is the best way to get views and subscribers to their channel, and that's a disgrace.

If you think this is the right way to present who you are, then you are not only fooling your audience but yourself.

Also do not steal content and abuse the fair use law; you don't want to head down that path.

3. Be Passionate

This tip takes a lot of heart (literally) because you need to love what you do to have a successful YouTube channel.

If you want to start a YouTube channel because you think it's a quick and easy way to become rich and famous, then you should stop what you're doing and find another hobby.

I guarantee that if you ask a famous YouTuber if they did YouTube to become rich and famous they will say never.

Stars like Jenna Marbles and MrBeast, started their YouTube career years ago because they loved making videos and being themselves.

They also put a lot of time and effort into their content not because they wanted to make money but because it made them happy, and their audiences saw that hence their wild success.

Bottom line is if you love doing something and are willing to work hard then success will eventually come, but that should be the last thing on your mind


4. Have Tough Skin

If you're willing to put yourself out there for YouTube, then expect a lot of hateful, derogatory, spam-filled, and downright cruel criticisms and trolling.

Trolls/critics will criticize your appearance, your sexual orientation, they'll leave sexist and misogynistic comments, your videos will be disliked and hated, and they'll be other vicious attacks towards you.

You'll need to have tough skin to deal with "hate" because this is the internet.

Trolls and cyberbullies are abundant on YouTube, so you need to stay strong and continue to do what you love without stopping.

You do have the option to disable comments, but as a beginner, you'll need to connect to your fan base through the comments section as much as possible.

As a YouTuber, it's your job to connect with your audience through the YouTube comments section and social media because it helps build your channel.

Your best bet would be to avoid responding to hateful comments while answering those you enjoy your content unless you can handle the trolling.

P.S. Remember that not all criticism equals trolling. Look out for valid critiques and don't discount all negativity especially if it directly relates to your content.


5. Luck

I know up and coming YouTubers won't want to hear this but luck does play a role in how successful you become.

In fact one of the highest subscribed channels, Smosh, began because of luck.

When YouTube launched in late 2005 a couple of teenagers made parodies where they lip-synced theme songs to popular animated shows.

In particular their Pokémon related theme song video went viral when it was featured on YouTube's front page and at the time became YouTube's most watched video.

There is no formula on whose videos will go viral.

A lot of viral videos offer something random and different that has never been seen before, but that's not always the case. Sometimes it's difficult to explain why things go viral, but remember that one viral video doesn't equal long term success.

Smosh had luck on their side but they wouldn't be where they are had it not been for their hard work and effort to build and expand their brand.

Luck through a viral video is often fleeting success.

You have to put in the work even if you get lucky, but unfortunately many don't so they fade away. Many YouTubers who've had long term success are those that built their audience and content over several years.

Personally I'd rather grow overtime than peak too soon and die out quickly.

5 Don'ts for Amateur YouTubers

1. Don't Spam

Spamming isn't advertising; it's just plain annoying for other content creators, viewers, and fan bases. Focus on your content and don't spend days promoting your videos/channel on popular YouTube channels.

If you must promote, then use your personal social media platforms to do so but promotion should be sporadic and engaging otherwise it'll be seen as relentless advertising.

2. Don't Be Cruel

Two wrongs don't make a right. If others are hateful towards you, then it's best to ignore and focus on the positive instead of retaliating. Trust me it does nothing but feed the trolls and they love every minute of it.

3. Don't Plagiarize

I mentioned don't copy and paste before but also don't steal original content and use it as your own. Your video will get banned/taken down and your channel could get banned.

If you're reacting to content, obey the fair use laws and respect the creator's work.

4. Don't Give Up

Becoming a successful YouTuber takes a lot of time and patience so you need to keep going. It often takes a couple years to capture success and that's after hours of work, production, and editing.

Think of your YouTube channel as a hobby but work on it like your career; however don't quit your day job unless you can survive making videos.

5. Don't Let it Get to You

Don't let your YouTube career destroy who you are by letting the hate get to you. Remember that creating videos and content should be something you love doing, and it should never feel bitter and painstaking to do.

If it does, then a YouTube career is not for you.

Your Thoughts!

What do you think is the toughest part when starting a YouTube Channel?

See results

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