If you’re like many woodworkers, you occasionally watch a woodworking video on YouTube and say to yourself “I could do that.” You might even say “I could do that better than that guy.” Chances are good that you’re right. In a future article I will give you some ideas on how to get started but for now, I’ll share the top three reasons why I think you should consider finally diving in. For reference, I’m a “small fry” YouTuber, with about 28,000 subscribers, but even with a modest following YouTube still brings a lot of value to my woodworking world.
1. Being a YouTuber serves as a powerful credential. As a woodworker, your customers will enjoy watching your creative process. Your creative process, attention to detail, and artistic integrity can all make your work stand out to prospective customers. Having this documentation of your process can also help you avoid diving into lengthy explanations of the same questions over and over. Instead, you can answer by saying, “let me send you a link to a video that will show you in great detail how I do that.” For custom projects, your customers will enjoy watching your process as you make their specific creation and they will gain a greater appreciation for your work. For those of us who create YouTube videos without selling the projects, it’s also fun to gift the item to someone and if they ask a question about how something was done, to let the video explain the process for you.
2. You become a member of a dynamic community. Being a YouTuber places you in the mix with some of the most creative, innovative, and interesting woodworkers. I have found that fellow YouTubers are open to collaborative projects and sharing ideas. In one collaboration, I worked with South African artist, Ahron Gropper, to produce a honeycomb resin bowl, where he created the blank and shipped it to me and I turned it on my Revo lathe. I also periodically meet up with local YouTubers in my area, to compare notes and help each other as we work on growing a following. Fellow YouTuber and Laguna lathe owner Ashley Harwood was gracious enough to appear on a video on my channel to share some pearls of wisdom from her Bowl Turning Master Class.
I also work with several YouTubers to support and promote the VetsTurn program that I started from my YouTube channel, through which we provide woodturning equipment, education and ongoing support to US military veterans who suffer from PTSD.
3. Tool Money! You know those annoying ads that you have to skip through before you can watch a YouTube video? Did you know that a portion of that advertising revenue goes to the content creator who posts the video on YouTube? A YouTuber receives ad revenue based on a typical range of $3 - $6 per 1,000 views, so if your video goes viral and reaches 1,000,000 views, it could be worth as much as $6,000. Furthermore, as you grow an audience, you can potentially land a lucrative sponsorship from a woodworking supplier, public appearance fees, and other perks. For most of us, YouTube revenue is modest and can serve as a supplement to offset some of our costs, but for some it can provide a sustainable living.
So, if you are thinking about finally taking that step and launching your channel, I encourage you to do so. In an upcoming blog I will share some tips to help you get started. For now, you are welcome to join my journey as a Subscriber to my YouTube channel which is called ToolMetrix.