Three years on YouTube

It's been three years since I started my YouTube channel, Simply Explained. In previous years (2017, 2018) I wrote blog posts where I reflected on what I did right, wrong and what I would improve. This year is no exception, so here we go!

Goals for 2018

My goals for 2018 were the following:

  • Update the design of this website & redesign the video section.
  • Make more Simply Explained videos and record myself more often instead of only showing animations.
  • Increase the quality of the video (both audio and video).

Did I achieve these goals? Well, sort of... Let's start with the bad: I didn't give this website any love. It hasn't received a redesign and I didn't improve the video section. It's pretty much the same website as in 2017, just with more content. I have been working sporadically on a new design for it, but haven't finished it because I'm not really convinced that it's better. So maybe I should take 2019 to gradually introduce new elements in the current design, instead of wanting to go for a complete redesign.

As for my YouTube channel: I did focus heavily on Simply Explained videos and even renamed my channel from "Savjee" to "Simply Explained - Savjee". For 2019 I'm thinking of dropping the "Savjee" part altogether. Thoughts?

Stats for 2018

For those who love numbers, here is an overview of 2018 and how it compared to 2017:

  • Third year on YouTube
  • 17 new videos uploaded (down from 30 last year)
  • 5,177,555 views (up from 1,166,592)
  • 19,666,495 total watched minutes (up from 4,113,598)
  • 95,205 subscribers gained (up from 19,004)
  • 3:47 average time watched (up from 3:31)

All of these metrics have increased and I couldn't be happier. I'd like to focus a lot on the total watch time and the average time watched because those metrics show that people are really watching a large portion of my videos.

100,000 subscribers

In 2018 I also surpassed the 100,000 subscriber mark. When I started my channel 3 years ago, this seemed like an impossibly large number to reach. But I didn't give up. I created more videos, increased my quality and worked on my skills as a content producer. And above all: I was patient.

A few weeks after reaching this milestone, YouTube sent me the Silver Play Button and it's been hanging proudly in my office. I hope that one day I can extend the collection with a gold button as well. But until then I have to keep working hard and keep my head down. It must be earned!

The majority of all new subscribers came in because of my "How does a blockchain work" video. That video has gotten a lot of attention (both good and bad) and has propelled my channel to new heights.

At first, I took this as a sign that I should make more blockchain/cryptocurrency videos. But that gets boring after a while. So instead of listing to the analytics, I decided to instead make videos about any subject I'd like. That way, the work I put into my YouTube channel remains fun, challenging and not boring.

Goals for 2019

For 2019, the plan is to keep doing what I'm doing right now. Only better ;)

First of all, I want to keep investing my time in making Simply Explained videos. I'm a curious person and I'm always reading articles and random Wikipedia pages. Being able to take that knowledge, repackage it and make a video about it, is really cool to do!

Secondly, I want to keep working on quality. In 2018 I made a few videos where I record myself talking about a subject and then placing my head on top of some animations. This all sounds easy to do with a green screen, but I didn't have one! This year I'd like to continue to make such videos but with a real green screen, so the quality will be better and it'll be a lot less of a hassle.

And lastly, I want to distance myself a bit from blockchain and cryptocurrency related videos. I do love learning more about these technologies, but I also want to make it clear that Simply Explained is about more than that. For instance: I've been making a few cool IoT devices in my spare time and I'm thinking about showing them off in a series of videos.

Thanks!

Before ending this post I want to thank everyone who watched one of my videos and/or subscribed to my channel. You rock! I wish you all a great 2019 & don't forget: keep learning!

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