Student Success Stories

We’ve heard some incredible stories from students who’ve taken our courses. We interviewed some of these students about their success and how starting a YouTube channel has changed their lives. Enjoy 😄

UK Med Student Turned Spanish Content Creator with 200k+ Subs

👍 Subscribers: 214,000

📺 Views: 10,018,269

Tell us a bit about yourself, what’s your background?

I’m a junior doctor working in the UK - kinda like Ali when he started his channel! I started my channel during my final year of medical school, but it didn’t really get proper traction until a year after I graduated.

Why did you set up a YouTube channel? What motivated you to get started?

The main thing that motivated me to start a channel was watching Ali’s video comparing how much money he was making from his different streams of income. I’ve always had many interests and that video opened my eyes to the idea that I didn’t necessarily have to be a full-time doctor. I could work as a doctor part-time and dedicate the rest of my time to my other interests.

On top of that, I thought I had something to share that could inspire and help others and I really wanted to get better at public speaking so starting a channel was a no-brainer!

Tell us about your journey on the platform so far.

I started my channel in June 2020 using just my phone and some books as a tripod. I had no idea what I was getting into. I didn’t know anything about filming, editing, scripting or anything like that - I was a complete beginner. And worst of all: I didn’t have a niche and I would make really random videos. It wasn’t until months later, when I joined the PTYA, that I properly defined my target audience and niche and learnt all the fundamentals that have taken my channel to another level.

Around that time I had about 600 subscribers, had been posting weekly videos for 5 months and I knew I wanted to do this Youtube thing long term, so I upgraded to a Canon M50 and a Rode Videomicro. This came with another learning curve because at first I didn’t know how to make the most of my camera (and to this day, I keep learning new things that are improving my videos that extra 0.5% every week).

During the next few months, I continued posting weekly videos with variable results but I noticed that my content was slowly getting more and more popular. February 2021 was my first great month. I gained around 1200 subs and some of my old videos started getting some attention and I started receiving my first few hate comments.

My content until then had been very niche (medicine in Spain and medical residency abroad), but during the first half of 2021, I started expanding my niche and experimenting with other types of videos, like vlogs or personal development videos. Then finally, in September 2021 I made THE video that blew my channel up. It was a Day in the life of a Spanish doctor in the UK and it quickly reached 100k views.

This video was narrated in a humorous way and got lots of likes and very positive comments, but it also brought a good number of haters to the channel, who clearly couldn’t understand some of my comments were jokes/sarcasm. This was the first time I had got proper hate and dealing with that for the first time wasn’t easy, but thankfully my loved ones didn’t let it get to me and all that engagement brought many views to some of my old videos that until then had gone mostly unnoticed.

And… that brings me to today, where I’m sitting at around 80k+ subs, one of my videos recently surpassed 1M views, and, annoyingly, a bigger Youtuber has even COPIED one of my videos literally word for word, which is crazy!

I still have a long way to go and many more things to learn, but I’m really happy I started my channel. It has brought lots of friends and opportunities to my life and it’s given me the safety net I needed to start my speciality training working less than full time from next year.

Pete Matheson's YouTube Channel Stats

What’s been key to your growth?

I think mainly finding what makes you unique and having something that your audience wants. I’m not the cleverest, prettiest or most eloquent Youtuber out there by no means. And I’m not an editing prodigy or make unique videos. Most of the info I share can probably be found somewhere else. However, I know how to present it to my audience in a helpful and entertaining way, and there’s no one in a similar position to me doing anything remotely similar in the Spanish-speaking market.

What are the key insights you’ve discovered since starting?

So many! But here are my favourite ones:

  • Your videos are going to suck A LOT until they don’t suck. It’s part of the process.
  • You can’t please everyone. There’s always going to be people who don’t like you for absolutely any reason and that’s okay. The best thing you can do about hate comments is to ignore the comment and/or block the hater.
  • No one cares about your videos when you start, so make the most of it! Make all the mistakes, experiment and don’t think too much before hitting publish.
  • Most people around you are going to be supportive. When I started my channel I was so scared of people finding out - I found the whole Youtube thing so embarrassing! But when my friends found out everyone was really nice about it and some of them even said they wish I had started my channel sooner because they had learnt so much from my videos.

How did you find producing content in Spanish?

Like everything, it has positives and negatives. I think there’s less competition in non-English speaking markets, so it’s easier to find a unique angle and get noticed. But there are also fewer opportunities for sponsorships/collabs and Youtube pays you less per view. However, I think this will probably improve in the next few years as more and more businesses in non-English speaking countries realise the power of social media.

Have you experienced any secondary effects from starting your channel?

I think the main one is that I’ve got better at public speaking, so now I feel more confident when I have to give presentations at work and stuff like that.

What are your goals for the future? How have your goals changed?

I want to continue posting content regularly, make my content production process more efficient, and gradually improve the quality of my videos and editing. I’ve recently hired an editor and bought a new lens, so we’ll see how that goes!

My goals have always been pretty similar but I would say I’m now thinking about monetisation a bit more. I’ve been toying with the idea of starting a membership on my channel with access to a few perks, such as a private Discord community. Diversifying from Youtube is one of my main goals this year and it certainly wasn’t when I first started.

Would you do anything differently if you were to start again?

Probably not. The mistakes I made were part of the learning process and without them, I don’t think I’d be where I am today. If anything, I would have joined the PTYA earlier but sadly, it wasn’t a thing when I started :)

One piece of advice for YouTubers just starting out?

I’m going to pull a James Clear here and say just focus on improving 1% every week - that WILL compound.

Where can we go to learn more about you?

My YouTube channel is a main place where I post my content. I’m also on Instagram, but I don’t post often.

Lastly, how did PTYA help you?

It helped me define my niche, USP and target audience, which I think was the main thing I needed to work on early on. I also learnt a few tricks to come up with new content regularly, and it made the process of buying the right gear for my channel super easy.

Looking back, I should probably revisit the modules on monetisation too - I didn’t really do much with them a few months ago as I wasn’t in the position to monetise anything but things have changed now!

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