I don’t have an MBA. I don’t even have a BA in business. I have a degree, but I can’t afford to go back to school; at least not yet. However, one thing that is amazing about the small business and entrepreneur community is that they are all so ready to help each other out. Almost anything you could want to learn about starting your own business, get a following on social media, or build a passive income is in a video on Youtube.
I’m lucky to have a 9-5 job that doesn’t require a lot of brainpower so I can listen to Youtube videos and podcasts endlessly while working. I don’t watch the videos, just listen and take notes while I work. After doing this for a couple of months it became pretty clear that the types of videos that try and teach you how to make money online and become a digital nomad fall into two categories: the ones that are just an outlet for them to boast about their success, and the ones that really try to help you out.
The first category, those that use Youtube as an outlet for bragging are pretty easily distinguishable once you start watching them. They are usually yelling at you from the get-go, looking at their phone and screaming in mock-disbelief at how many followers they have, either riding or driving in a fancy car, in some luxurious apartment with only a laptop and a cell phone, or in some exotic country looking like they haven’t worked in days. While these videos usually have at least one or two good pieces of advice, they are hard to trust or listen to. These content creaters are more interested in selling their product, their get-rich-fast schemes, or just showing off their life. Most of them are young (under 25) and claim that they came from no educational background or family money.
Just typing in “Grow Instagram Followers 2019” you will find hundreds of videos claiming that they grew their business with just one trick, or that they became an influencer in just one year, yada yada yada.
When it comes to Instagram, I liked Jade Darmawangsa’s videos. You can tell from her videos that she is incredibly hard-working, and doesn’t ever stop. She is a young entrepreneur and from what she shows in her videos, exceptionally successful. Like all the other channels she has to set herself apart, make her channel more interesting than the others. She hits on her young age and dropping out of high school in almost every video in order to get that point across. At times this can be repetitive, especially if you binge her videos but it seems to be working for her.
I don’t know if it is a slight shot of jealousy but I can’t listen to her videos non-stop like the other ones because a lot of her content is just bragging about all the things she gets to do at 16 years old. I know that when I was 16 I would have said exactly the same thing if I were in her shoes. But, sometimes it just reminds me too much of all the dumb things I said when I was that age and can only handle so much. In the same way that I can’t watch Eighth Grade by Bo Burnham because its so cringe-worthy of all the reminders of my own 8th grade…. I’ve only gotten through half of the movie so far.
One of my favorite Youtube channels is Income School. They are just two seemingly regular guys giving all their tips away about making passive income from niche websites with quality material. Sometimes the hooks in their videos are a bit corny, (like this one that literally starts in a cornfield…. Yes I had to make that pun, thanks for asking) but it keeps you watching. They don’t try and gimmick you with how many cars they’ve bought or where they were one year ago, or that they have this magical key to unlocking millions of dollars. In fact, they insist that you watch all their free content first before even thinking about buying their private coaching. They are like your two older brothers trying to make sure that you have what you need to get the job done. They are incredibly smart when it comes to engagement online, and they break down all of their tips into things you can start to do right that day. I’ve learned so much from them about blogging (still not the best but working on it) and about what it will take to get high volume traffic to our website.
Learning by Youtube takes practice, it’s a skill to be able to distinguish those that are promoting themselves from those that are genuinely trying to help you grow your business. It’s different from looking up how to clean your washing machine, for example. None of these videos spend the first five minutes of their video by telling you how many kids they have or how many loads of laundry they have done in the past week in order to prove to you why their video is the best and the only one you should watch about cleaning your washing machine. They just show you how they do it and are done with it.
But if you can clean your washing machine better than them they will probably never know, and it will not affect their income or their way of life. That’s the difference. These videos on how to grow your followers, how to make a passive income, or how to blog like a rockstar are helping their competition. The better you do at what they are helping you with the higher the chance that their followers will shift to you. There is a finite amount of time in a day which means there are only so many blogs a single person can follow.
I don’t blame the Youtubers for wanting to show off what they have. It’s hard work to get where they are. They make it look simple with their hacks and tips, but it takes a lot of hustle. I salute them, I just don’t want to watch them.
What do you think? Do you have a favorite Youtube channel? Do you have a channel that you can’t stand? Let us know in the comments below.