By Daniel Zychla
Throughout Year 10 at Upper Canada College, all students are given the opportunity to create a personal project. The outline of the project is very vague and allows students to explore their areas of interest and creativity. For me, over 2 years ago, that was stocks and finance.
Since 2019, I have been fascinated with the finance space, ranging from stocks to concepts within personal finance; it consumed my life. Given the start of the pandemic in early 2020, I had a lot more spare time, which I used to educate myself on the space further.
When UCC introduced the personal project in Year 10, my mind immediately went to stocks and finance, the thing I’d been exploring for the year leading up to that point. The idea of a YouTube channel popped into my head quite naturally, given that it was the medium I used to educate myself on the space up until then.
From there, The Finance Channel was born. I began to create videos about various companies, going through a fundamental analysis of their business models, valuations, and health from a financial perspective. The videos caught on reasonably quickly, amassing hundreds of views from organic searches, people looking for videos about the companies I was talking about.
One of the most essential components of YouTube is consistency, ensuring that a healthy flow of content is constantly being created to ensure interest is always maintained from viewers. Given the pandemic and the nature of lockdowns which spanned from 2020 to 2022, I made a total of 270 videos over the course of 2 years, a challenging feat that taught me many valuable life lessons.
What I realized about YouTube is that viewers care solely about value. When someone clicks on a video and watches it, they do so to gain value in the form of various things such as knowledge, insight, or entertainment. In the context of finance, I focused on knowledge, ensuring that each of my videos provided as much knowledge as possible to serve as a value proposition for viewers to subscribe and continue watching my videos.
With this in mind, I never saw any reason to focus on over-the-top editing or even scripting. Instead, what was most important to me was providing valuable content that left viewers more knowledgeable once they finished watching. This technique simultaneously removed many cumbersome and lengthy parts of making videos and allowed me to grow my audience quickly.
Throughout my time running the channel, I have built a community of over 6,000 subscribers who watch my videos regularly, sharing their perspectives in each video’s comment section. With over 660,000 views from over 50 countries, my diverse and global viewer base offers valuable feedback and insight into my content, which I use to progress my knowledge and shape my opinions.
The Finance Channel has opened up many opportunities for me, including my current job as a content marketer for Canadian-based cryptocurrency exchange Netcoins, possible because of my interview with the company’s CEO, Mark Binns, in early 2021.
If there is one thing I recommend to anyone reading this, it’s to explore your passions. Whether it be cooking, working out, a particular sport, or a hobby like gaming, find ways to create content surrounding those passions, because half the battle of YouTube is putting yourself out there. Being a YouTuber has changed my life, and I know that with hard work and determination, it can be an incredible tool for anyone out there to share their passions and knowledge.