Picking Your YouTube Name.
The first thing to do is to pick your name. Be careful with this. That shite band you like now might not seem so cool in a couple of years. When you’ve made it big and you’ve got a ton of subscribers and the channels racking in millions of views a month you don’t want to be regretting your name choice.
It’s your brand and it’s important. Making it memorable isn’t necessarily the be all and end all. You wouldn’t believe how many times people have messaged me saying “oh I’m thinking of making a music channel on YouTube I’ve just got to pick my name.” And then they come back with what they think sounds cool there and then “MidnightRider” “RenegadeStalker91” “xXRogueSnakeXx”
Don’t pick a name like that, be honest with yourself are people going to think “I’m looking for some music oh look at this channel, Renegade Stalker I bet he writes good music” No, they are going to think that your channel is about arse rape and stalking.
Make sure your name is either relevant to what your channel is or simply relevant to who you are… If you actually spend your time stalking or riding around at midnight then go ahead. But I recommend keeping it simple and normal, something that is clear and people know what the deal is.
If your counter argument to this is ‘oh but wait a minute, all those huge gaming channels like JackSepticBalls, PewDiePie, CupQuake and StampyLongCock all have bullshit irrelevant names.’ That’s true they do, but they are the exception, they make up 0.00000001% of the YouTube community. For every PewDiePie there are millions of other gaming channels with long inane names that make no sense with under 10 subscribers because nobody can find them.
Of course, your name won’t make or break you. But it will have an effect on your channel even if small.
Another thing is that down the line (especially in music) you’re going to want some sort of credit and appreciation from others for what you’re doing. You want to be able to say ‘Yeah that’s me who’s done this…’ Not MidnightRider123. I was very close to picking SolidSnakePiano for my name and I can’t tell you how glad I am that I didn’t. I still love Metal Gear Solid but people know me as me, they know I’m writing the music and my name is clearly all over the place. That’s a bit of a selfish reason but still take it into consideration.
Avatar and Channel Art
When you first start YouTube channel you will see this
Everyone else however will see this
How your channel looks to the World and all its inhabitants before avatar and channel art.
Having an avatar and channel art will make a tremendous difference. Even if you don’t have any videos there’s still a chance somebody might subscribe to you because you’ve grabbed their attention.
A way to make channel art is to download Sketchbook Express free from the app store or Photoshop.
I use Sketchbook Express, it’s like a small scale Photoshop, and it’s free so it’s our number one choice.
Your Channel Art
Option 1: Get Somebody Else To Do It.
Head over to DeviantArt to find an artist who does channel art. You’ll be spoilt for choice and the talent of some of those artists is staggering. Most will do exactly what you ask for a price.
They will most likely be much better than you.
They will most likely have better equipment.
You will have to pay.
I heard you moan through the screen.
You. Tighter than a camels arse in a sandstorm.
The artist might not have you high on their list of priorities (Usually depends on how much you pay) The only way you get away with not paying is if you’re giving them some exposure, and the only exposure you can give them is on webcam, which they most likely aren’t interested in anyway.
Prices vary but from what I’ve seen you can get channel art done for as cheap as $20.00. There may even be cheaper.
But if you have absolutely no money we can look at Option 2.
Option 2: Do It Yourself
The cheapest way.
You can learn how to use the software.
Don’t have to deal with anybody else but yourself.
Can do exactly what you want.
You might suck.
You will need to learn how to use the software.
It will take up time.
Making your own channel art.
The artwork has to be 2560 x 1440
https://jonathan.porta.codes/images/posts/2013/04/youtube-channel-art-template.png <copy the URL and save this to your desktop.
Drag the image from your desktop onto your Sketchbook Express app.
It will open a project with those exact dimensions. I think that image is pretty self-explanatory but I have no idea who’s reading this so I’m going to explain it.
That red area
Is the most important part, there you need to fit your name and whatever else you’re planning on putting there, because that’s what people will be seeing.
Here’s how we see it on YouTube
The actual making of your channel art is up to you. Try not to be too adventurous, make sure that a clear message gets across. If you lack the knowledge and resources then keeping it simple is a very good way of disguising that. A classy font over a white background can look professional. Make use of the Layer Editor (almost all picture editing software have this layer option)
Use the second layer for text, and the first for a static image. If you look at my channel art again
that was done with 2 layers, the first layer was the picture of the twirling piano keys, the second layer was the text on top of that image.
You can get loads of free fonts from http://www.dafont.com
Your channels looking good right now, you look like a real YouTuber just without videos. You’ve probably even got a few people curious. A line’s forming. All you need to do now is get your avatar.
Take a picture of yourself or you could pay an artist to create an avatar for you or if you happen to be a good artist, a good drawer or anything like that maybe you could create your own character for your avatar.
Here’s an example of an avatarRipley’s avatar.
Next entry I’ll give you some tips and tricks to getting more exposure, views and subscribers during your time in the dark period of your YouTube career (Pre-1000 subscribers).