Back in November, I launched the youtube channel Hashtag Parodies with my boyfriend, Kevin, and two friends of ours, Liz and Dom. We’ve only had it going for a few months, but I can still give you insight into what this experience has been like and offer you the truth about starting a YouTube channel. Let’s begin…

Why did we start it?

Kevin and I moved to LA mainly so he could pursue his comedy writing career. Instead of waiting for some big-time agent to come knocking, we thought it was time to be proactive and start showcasing Kevin’s work. We began attending some events at YouTube Space LA, and that’s when we realized that we could put a team together to do this ourselves! Liz is also a comedy writer. Dom’s a director. I’m a marketer. Altogether, we could build up a hilarious channel of original sketches, and so was born Hashtag Parodies!

How did we start it?

Last summer, Kevin started taking free classes at YouTube Space LA. Then I started taking them as well. In fact, I’m now on track to complete their “Build Your Channel” learning path. I discovered that much of this information was digital marketing 101, so I felt comfortable with it. Plus, the classes were fun, the atmosphere was exciting, and the people I was meeting (fellow YouTube creators) were incredibly talented. I took a deep dive into the YouTube Creator Academy for tips and best practices, then met with Kevin about what I’d learned. Kevin worked with Liz and Dom on the creative details. I started to get the branding and marketing going. Before we knew it, our first sketch was ready to go the day before Thanksgiving! That video has now received more than 1,000 views.

What is the plan for Hashtag Parodies?

Our ultimate dream for the channel is that we’ll have a large team of creators, studio space, many many many subscribers, and the funniest content on the Internet! We don’t want to do this on our own. We welcome other writers, actors, directors, producers and anyone who’d like to contribute to the art of making people laugh. That’s what Hashtag Parodies is all about. Eventually, we’ll have playlists for every category of parodies: commercials, movies, TV shows, songs, news clips, etc. Check out our channel trailer below to get a better idea:

What’s next? 

The YouTube venture has been so exciting that I even started my very own vlog channel. In April, Kevin and his team will release Hashtag Parodies’ first web series: Top Microwave Chef, presented by White Castle. That’s right, we partnered with White Castle on this series. Major sponsorship like this is typically unheard of for a brand a new YouTube channel. We love that they are open to new and unique marketing opportunities like this! The series is a parody of all the cooking reality shows, and the “contestants” battle it out to see who can reheat a specific item the best way.

Here is the obligatory call to SUBSCRIBE TO THE CHANNEL! That way, you’ll get notified when Top Microwave Chef is released. Also, it’s a way of supporting me, Kevin, Liz and Dom, and our efforts. It’s become our baby, and we’re all committed to helping it grow. If you also want to follow us on Twitter, we’d love that, too.

The truth is that starting a YouTube channel takes dedication and effort. If you want it to be successful, then you need to put a schedule in place and be committed to your videos. I’ve learned from Kevin that you don’t need to wait for things to be perfect. You just need to TRY. Take the steps to move forward on posting videos. You’ll learn along the way, and he was right. I’ve only got 2 videos on my vlog, and I learned a lot from creating and posting each one. Now, I’m just glad that I started, even though I don’t consider those videos to be perfect.

If you’ve thought of starting a YouTube channel, what’s been holding you back?

 

*This post is part of a 30-day series called “Getting Unstuck” in which I’m trying to figure out my next professional step by getting out of my comfort zone and taking on various challenges. Follow along by subscribing to my weekly email list here.