5 Crucial Mistakes To Avoid On YouTube In 2023

Reverse Engineer Your Way to YouTube Success

Emily Olson
3 min readJan 16, 2023

Starting YouTube can be overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be.

If you want to grow on YouTube, you have to reverse engineer it first to understand what doesn’t work before you understand what does.

YouTube is a mindset, and it’s not something that comes naturally at first.

But it’s a mindset that can be learned.

I know, because I’ve made all these mistakes on my 9-year YouTube journey!🤪

Let’s dive in:

Mistake #1: Doing nothing with the data 📊

Too often, we choose to not make data-informed decisions!

We don’t look at the analytics, which makes it impossible to know what’s working and what’s not. Analytics are a powerful resource we have, for free, that are often left completely untapped! 🤯

You will find success much faster on YouTube if you are regularly checking your analytics, and using them to inform better video ideas, tags, and titles.

Secret #1: To be successful, it’s important to understand your strengths and what your audience wants to see from you via your analytics, while also infusing your own unique style into your videos.

Mistake #2: Focusing on the wrong metrics 👍

Focusing too much on vanity metrics can actually slow down your growth!

A vanity metric is a highly visible, outward-facing metric (like views, likes, and subscribers) that may make you feel good, but does not necessarily indicate success or impact on your channel or business.

Brands have shifted and they like to know about engagement, watch time, and your click-through-rate, for example, because they tell a more complete story of how connected your audience is to you.

Secret #2: Don’t get it confused: high vanity metrics can be good, but it’s far from the complete story. Focus on your channel’s overall health, inside and out.

Mistake #3: Chasing virility exclusively 💯

Going viral may seem like the Holy Grail of YouTube success, but it’s important to remember that it’s not the only path to success (or the best).

Secret #3: Make sure you’re creating content you like creating, so you don’t get stuck creating viral content that you don’t like actually shooting.

Don’t fall into the trap of neglecting the long-term in favor of short-term gains. It can distract you from the more important and sustainable metrics of long-term success like creating high-quality content that aligns with you and your vision.

Mistake #4: Impatience & giving up 😔

Impatience is the enemy of success!

It’s easy to get caught up in the desire for instant gratification and give up too soon when things don’t happen as quickly as you want them to. But the truth is, building a successful YouTube channel takes time and effort.

Patience is key and it will guide you through the ups and downs, and eventually lead you to your goals.

Impatience will only lead to excuses and quitting.

Secret #4: Set realistic goals for yourself and be patient with the process. Remember, success is not a overnight thing, it takes time and effort but with patience, you will get there.

Mistake #5: Posting & ghosting 👻

Engaging with your audience tells them you’re present.

When you post a new video, make sure to stick around and respond to comments. This will not only show your audience that you value their feedback but also give you a faster feedback loop to make informed decisions about your content.

Secret #5: Make point to be present with your audience and don’t miss the golden opportunity to connect.

Also, success isn’t linear so, try to enjoy the journey! Don’t be afraid to make mistakes, because you will learn each time.

“A bad day for your ego, is a good day for your soul.” — Michael Beckwith