How to Start a YouTube Channel in Kenya

How to Start a YouTube Channel in Kenya

YouTube is a video-sharing platform that was founded by three former PayPal employees, Steve ChenChad Hurley, and Jawed Karim, in 2005. They registered the website on February 14 and launched it in May of the same year. In November 2006Google acquired YouTube for $1.65 billion and made it one of its subsidiaries. Today, YouTube has over 2 billion monthly active users and is the second most visited website in the world. YouTube works by using a combination of product features, policies, and algorithms to deliver, manage, and monetize videos. It also has policies and rules that govern what users can and cannot do on the platform.

What is a YouTube channel?

A YouTube channel is a personal or business page on YouTube where users can upload, manage, and share their videos. A YouTube channel also serves as the user’s profile and identity on the platform, where they can display their name, description, image, links, and other information. A YouTube channel can have more than one owner or manager if it is created as a Brand Account.

A YouTube channel can have various features and benefits, such as:

  • Subscribers and Notifications: Subscribers are users who choose to follow a YouTube channel and receive updates on its latest videos. Notifications are alerts that YouTube sends to subscribers when a channel uploads a new video, goes live, or posts a community message.
  • Playlists and Sections: Playlists are collections of videos that a channel or a user creates and organizes by a theme, topic, or category. Sections are groups of playlists or videos that a channel can add to its homepage to showcase its content.
  • Comments and Community: Comments are feedback or messages that users can leave on a video or a channel. Community is a feature that allows a channel to post text, images, polls, or videos to interact with its subscribers and viewers.
  • Analytics and Insights: Analytics are data and statistics that YouTube provides to a channel to measure its performance, such as views, watch time, revenue, and audience. Insights are reports and tips that YouTube offers to a channel to help it improve its content, strategy, and growth.

How do I start a YouTube channel in Kenya?

Follow these seven steps to creating a successful YouTube channel business in Kenya:

Step 1: Choose Your Niche

Choosing your niche is the first step in this business. In Kenya, YouTube niches that have seen popularity include areas like Kenyan culture, travel, food, and tech reviews. It’s essential to focus on a topic or area that you are not only passionate about but also one that resonates with the Kenyan audience. This alignment ensures that your content is both personally fulfilling and appealing to viewers. For instance, a channel focusing on unique Kenyan cuisines or local travel destinations can attract viewers both within and outside Kenya, showcasing the rich cultural heritage of the country.

Mastering your niche is the next pivotal step. This involves developing a deep understanding of and expertise in your chosen field. For Kenyan YouTubers, this might mean collaborating with local experts, brands, or communities to create content that is authentic and credible. For example, a tech review channel can gain credibility and audience trust by featuring local tech startups or reviewing gadgets popular in the Kenyan market. This not only enhances the channel’s relevance but also positions you as an authority in your niche.

Lastly, finding your passion niche is about aligning your channel with your personal interests. Successful Kenyan YouTubers often share content that is close to their hearts, be it Kenyan music, wildlife conservation, or stories of local entrepreneurship. This passion is infectious and can lead to a more engaged and loyal audience. It’s about creating content that you love and are excited to share, which in turn resonates with your viewers.

Therefore, a channel driven by passion is more likely to sustain long-term engagement, both from the creator’s and the audience’s perspectives. Timothy Kimani Ndegwa, a Kenyan comedian popularly known as Njugush, is an example of a passionate YouTuber who has an interest in the comedy niche. Njugush is a popular comedian and content creator in Kenya and has been featured in some of the popular television shows, such as The Real House Helps of Kawangware. After the dissolution of the show, Njungush and his wife, Celestine Ndinda, popularly known as Wakavinye, started their own show on YouTube in January 2014. After the two couples started sharing comedy series and garnered over 100 million views on YouTube, both Njugush and Wakavinye decided to start a company called Njugush Creatives Limited.

Currently, Njungush and his wife, Celestine Ndinda, are working on one of the most popular shows in Kenya, called TTNT, meaning Through Thick and Thin, a stand-up special that started in 2020. The show in its 4th season delves into life as the couple knows it and pokes fun at the “thick and thin” that life throws at them. The show costs around Ksh 250. Therefore, the journey of these couples shows you how niche selection and mastery can make a life for you.

Step 2: Understand Your Audience

After you choose a niche, the next step is understanding what your audience loves and expects from you. Therefore, researching your topic is crucial when you want to increase your engagement and subscribers on YouTube. To increase your viewer engagement and popularity, you need to ensure that your personal interests and experiences align with or resonate with the audience. Therefore, tools such as YouTube Analytics, Keyword.io, ChatGPT, VidiQ, and Ahrefs should be used to find ideas on the chosen topic. These tools can help you understand what topics your audiences expect to see. To further understand the audience, leveraging comments and the YouTube Analytics tool for detailed insights into viewer preferences and behaviors is important.

Step 3: Create Your YouTube Channel

Once you have a Google account, you can create your YouTube channel. To do this, go to YouTube.com and click on the “Create a Channel” button in the top right corner of the screen. Follow the prompts to set up your channel name, profile picture, and cover image.

Step 4: Optimize Your Channel

To make your channel more attractive to viewers, you should optimize it. This means creating a channel description, adding tags, and selecting a channel category. You should also upload a channel trailer that showcases your best content.

Step 5: Create Your First Video

With your channel set up, it’s time to create your first video. You don’t need fancy equipment or a professional setup to get started. You can use your smartphone to record and edit your videos. However, it’s important to make sure your videos have good lighting, sound, and content quality.

Step 6: Upload and Promote Your Video

Once you have created your first video, you can upload it to your channel. Make sure you add a descriptive title, tags, and a compelling description to help viewers find your video. You can also promote your video on social media, email, and other channels to attract more viewers.

Step 7: Consistency is Key

Finally, to succeed on YouTube, you need to be consistent. This means creating and uploading videos regularly, engaging with your viewers, and continually improving your content quality.

Starting a YouTube channel in Kenya can be a fun and rewarding experience. By following these steps, you can get started and build a successful channel that reaches a global audience.

How to Start a YouTube Channel in Kenya Frequently Asked Question

How much does it cost to start a YouTube channel in Kenya?

The cost of starting a YouTube channel in Kenya varies. Basic equipment like a camera and microphone might cost around 30,000 to 70,000 Kenyan Shillings. Internet costs depend on your plan. No registration fee is required, but investing in good equipment and internet is key for quality content.

How much does YouTube pay per 1,000 views in Kenya?

YouTube’s payment per 1,000 views in Kenya varies widely, but it’s typically around 28.47 to 427.05 Kenyan Shillings. However, factors like viewer location, content type, and audience engagement impact earnings.

Does YouTube pay through M-Pesa?

No, YouTube does not currently pay through MPesa.

Does YouTube pay monthly in Kenya?

Yes, YouTube pays creators monthly in Kenya. You will receive payments from 21 to 27 each month.

How much does YouTube Shorts pay for 1 million views in Kenya?

For 1 million views = Ksh. 150,000, while 2 million views = Ksh. 300,000. According to The Pluto, a Kenyan most successful Youtuber says that for one million subscribers in Kenya, you may earn Ksh100,000.

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