Recently, we connected with Ryan Carey regarding his experience with YouTube and he was gracious enough to give us this guest blog post sharing his advice.

Ryan originally started this post by saying he is no expert…

We beg to differ.

Ryan Carey (@ryanwcarey) worked at YouTube for 5 years and is now a freelance video strategist and camera presence coach based in San Francisco and Brooklyn.

Here are Ryan’s 6 pieces of advice for any of you working on building a personal brand through video:

1. Your videos are not going to go ‘viral’

I’m sorry. The news had to be broken. The closest word in our English language to ‘viral’ is miracle. Now that our dreams have been crushed, it’s time we begin putting in work to be serious (and taken seriously) with video.

2. Take time building a home

This is the difference between straw and brick. Do you have a YouTube ‘account’ (it’s called a channel)? Did you sign up and never put anything more into it? If yes, you have a YouTube house made of straw. One needs to take time setting up a channel properly, learn basic editing and be able to offer consistent polished content. This is what I call YouTube muscle – which means investing some sweat in building the brick foundation. Once complete, maintenance is lowered (still very relevant) and you can focus more on your content.

3. If it’s not fun, you’re doing it wrong

As a culture, we have gone from sitting in front of the TV watching a total of 5 channels to having power at our fingertips to create any style of show we want. We can assume the role of stars and no one has to approve it or give us a deal. If someone had come 30 years ago and said we’d someday be able to make our own shows, we’d all be excited. That is fun.

4. We are all making shows

This might be your first season. How many episodes will you make? How long will they be? What’s yours about? How often will you release them? Reading this may seem overwhelming, but it’s not. It’s just work that goes into building the muscle to make your personal brand smoother on video.

5. Polish

This is the difference between showing up to a black tie affair in jeans versus a tuxedo. Polish means a concise video, an accurate description, your own intro/outro and smooth transitions every single time. It also means asking yourself if the audience will stay engaged with what you’ve made. If you answer no, tighten it up and tuck in your shirt.

6. Don’t waste time

Both yours and the audience’s. Everyone knows attention spans are at an all time low. YouTube is no different. If your video doesn’t pop until 25 seconds in, you may lose half the viewers. If there is a 3 second pause of you thinking on camera about what you’re going to say, that’s a risk of releasing the audience member who could easily become a lifetime fan loyal to your personal brand. Or at the very least a subscriber.

Be fast. Be loud. Be confident.

You’re not a sitcom nor a reality show. You get to choose who you are on camera, and whoever you choose, ensure it’s professional.


Looking for more info on YouTube for Musicians? Check out Part 5 of Cyber PR’s free course, Social Media House! Click the picture below to get started.
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