Friday, March 4, 2011

Building an Online Following

This morning when I woke up and sat down in front of my computer with my breakfast and coffee. I logged into You Tube and was pleasantly surprised to see that the Tsunami podcast did a profile of me on their weekly podcast about Japan-based content creators. It was quite cool.

In watching the video where Hiroki talked about my online presence and showcased some of my videos, past and present, I got to thinking about how I got to where I am today online.

I am by no means “famous” or even remotely “quasi-famous”, but I do have a wonderful and loyal following on both of my You Tube channels and a small, yet growing readership on this blog. My “success” on You Tube was achieved in a variety of ways:

1. Consistently make content. If you want to get noticed online you have to be constantly putting out a product. The more of “you” out there, the better chance there is that people will notice you. Also, once you begin to build an audience, they want to see you on a regular basis! If you are on You Tube, make videos frequently. If you blog, write several times a week.

2. Make a quality product. I of course mentioned that you must produce content consistently, but remember; no one wants to watch crap! Also, people don’t want to read crap. Make it fun, interesting and well done.

3. Write about or vlog about something you really love. If you love or really like what you are vlogging/blogging about, the passion shows and people will notice.

4. Find a niche. I’m still trying to do this! I know that if I did, I would find more success online. An example of this would be my friend Sara. She has been in Japan for quite some time and LOVES Starbucks. She is a fan of their products and their culture. She recently did a very cool thing. She began a blog about Starbucks in Japan. That is a great topic. There are many Starbucks/coffee fans out there and of course there are many Japan fans out there. She is killing two birds with one stone.

5. Network like nuts. I still haven’t done much of this with my blog, but have done loads over the years on You Tube. Get out there and meet people. Find other vloggers within your community or who make similar videos. Comment on their videos and blogs. Send them emails and messages. Form a relationship. This can take time, but that’s how you build your network. Once you have online allies, they will look out for you and also promote you!

6. Pay it forward. Karma is a real thing online. Do good for other vloggers and bloggers and you will build a solid reputation. In time, others will do good for you. Shout people out! Make videos or write blogs about other content creators you admire or like. Add them to your blogroll or liked vloggers box on You Tube. Shout people out in videos. When you begin to do this frequently, people will notice that you are a kind web citizen and eventually people will do the same for you.

These are some basic things you can do to help you channel or blog grow. Now, this doesn’t normally happen over night. For most successful vloggers and bloggers out there, it took a lot of time and work to achieve success. It takes time to build a network and build a body of content. If you want it enough and do it wisely though, success can definitely happen!

Now of course, I’d love it if all of you would check out Tsunami Ep. 9 - Busan Kevin, the video made about me, as a content creator:


Kurt said...

An excellent blog post, Kevin. You're sharing lessons learned at the leading edge of content creation. I like your blog!

Jim said...

"Find a niche" I bet Kurt wishes he had a dime for every time I said I needed to do that. Great post here, Kevin. And you are most definitely one of the people that goes by the laws of Karma. I can't thank you enough for all the stuff you've done for me. I'll always appreciate it.

Brokendrums said...

Jim and Kurt! You are two great vloggers and I'm definitely glad that I've met you. Hopefully we can meet in person sometime soon :)

Hiroki Matsuuchi said...

Great post! Over the past few weeks I've come to realize how many content creators there are out there who are, for whatever reason, looking to build an audience. This post is gold for people looking to do just that.

Looking over the commenters on this blog as well as your YouTube channel, the number of commenters who are also content creators is quite striking. It really is quite an amazing time we're living in when the consumers of media can so easily also become the creators.

PS - It's raining here. Are you the one to blame for that?

Anonymous said...

Hey There Kevin~

This is a thoughtful post. Full of great ideas and wisdom, too. My cousin works in the SEO field - he has given some of the same advice to me that you've written about here...Continuing to enjoy your videos and writing. You consistently produce quality content that is compelling, focused and relevant - also always entertaining. Looking forward to more!

locohama said...

Excellent tips! I follow most of them and I concur they are the most effective ways to build a following/ readership. And responding to comments really helps a lot weak spot but I'm trying to improve in that area.


Brokendrums said...

@Locohama I'm with you on that! I need to get batter at being involved on the comment section of the blog :)