About Nils

By day, Nils works as a project manager in the IT industry. By night, he explores strange new worlds, protects the downtrodden, and practices conquering the world. To follow his exploits you can subscribe to his YouTube channel, Have Joystick, Will Travel and follow him on Twitter.

March 2015 Progress

March was a very odd month. I concentrated almost entirely on my YouTube content, and my channel continued to grow at it’s usual, slow pace (+4 Subscribers). I’ve done this not so much out of economic considerations – the channel is unlikely to ever pay any sort of significant money – but because it was the most fun, and, to be frank, because I have been in need of escapism myself.

The obvious consequence of this was that total page views for my blogs dropped by about 1k, to 4750. It’s still alright, but it’s further away from my goals that ever. Post it, and they will come; neglect your blog and it begins to fade. It also reinforces the lesson I learned a long time ago – you can’t do everything, pick your projects and do not split your efforts among too many. If you do, you end up with multiple things that fail at the same time.

What makes March strange, however, is that I had a record month in terms of revenue. The one blog I earn most of my AdSense money with performed really well, and I took in 9.77 Euro – Add YouTube to that, and I will be just under 11 Euro for March. Again, not a lot, but that’s three lunches if I don’t go for the expensive stuff. Still far from even covering costs, of course, but let’s look at it as half-full.

  • Estimated Revenue: 10.9 Eur.
  • Total Pageviews: 4750, down 1000.
  • New Posts: 16
  • New Videos: 12
  • YouTube Subscribers: 78

Note: I changed the way I count – I recorded more than 12 Eps, but many (at least another 12) are scheduled for April.

Best days for publishing YouTube Videos

Frederator Networks has compiled statistics on what they believe are the best – and worst – days and times to publish videos on YouTube. A nice little resource, though presumably everybody is following this or something similar, and hence these times might also be the most competitive.

My own data is way too limited to draw much conclusions from, but much of what they report seems like common sense.

February 2015 Progress

February was “meh”. I was taken out by a nasty flu – there’s a bit of an epidemic going around here – and being ill does not help me be productive. That said, I still produced a decent amount of content; most importantly I did not have to interrupt my YouTube posting schedule as we had several episodes pre-produced.

Pageviews were down 400 compared to January, but up 1700 compared to February 2014. The blog carnival effect accounts for much of the loss. The good news is that a few of my smaller sites – which support my long term goals – grew. The bad news is that my main revenue generator continues to decline, but at the level I am at it the loss of revenue doesn’t really matter. No real progress towards my goals, though.

Speaking of goals, I gained another three YouTube subscribers, bringing me to 74. Again, extrapolating from these admittedly few data points means I will miss my target; with ten months to go this is something to be aware of.

In summary, I guess February was a lot of “business as usual”.

  • Estimated Revenue: 3.7 Eur.
  • Total Pageviews: 5800, down 400.
  • New Posts: 22
  • New Videos: 15
  • YouTube Subscribers: 74


January 2015 Progress

January was a good month, mostly because I actually created a good amount of content. The cooperation with another YouTube channel helped with creating videos – I published 19 in January, with another 4 already “in the can” for February. Most notably I gained four new subscribers, now sitting at 71.

But I did well on blog posts as well, with 30 new ones across my sites. I hosted a Blog Carnival, and total pageviews returned to almost 6200 as a result. (I’ve signed up for another blog carnival – for May – because of this result.)

Financially, I am still in the same place. After a fairly good December, my revenue dropped to about 4€, including estimated YouTube revenue. It was my best January so far.

  • Estimated Revenue: 4 Euro
  • Total pageviews: Up 900, at just under 6200
  • New Posts: 30 (not including any previously queued)
  • New Videos: 19 (not including queued ones)
  • Youtube subscribers: 71

Goals for 2015

The new year has begun and that means it’s time to set myself some goals. I thought about this quite a bit, because it’s easy to get “carried away” and come up with bad goals. Good goals are SMART – Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-Bound.

With that in mind, and recalling the overall purpose of my efforts, I decided that I’d like to achieve growth for my blogs and youtube channel in 2015: provide more and better content to more readers and viewers. This doesn’t necessarily mean that I also want to increase revenue, though it is obviously directly related to revenue. I am basically looking for measures by which I can judge the “quality” of my products.

As a note, I will set myself a “lower” and a “pie in the sky” goal.

Blog Pageviews: Lower: 7500/month; Pie-in-the-Sky: 10,000/month.

By the end of 2015, I’d like to grow the increase monthly readership across all my blogs to at least 7500 pageviews a month; 10000 being the higher goal. I don’t feel confident that I can grow another metric reliably (facebook page likes, twitter followers). That might come later; for now my main traffic source is Google. The amount of pageviews I get is directly linked to page ranking, and to links from other sites (which, again, also helps pagerank).

For comparison: The monthly average in 2014 was 4719, up from 3249 in 2013.

Youtube Subscribers: Lower: 150, Pie-in-the-Sky: 500.

On YouTube, on the other hand, subscribers to one’s channel are a direct measure of how successful one is. There are also video views, but I feel that subscribers are the foundation of a “community”. As I write this, I have 69 subscribers; I felt that 100 as a goal is too low; it’s a challenge either way but 100 makes no great difference. 150 will be quite difficult. 500 is very hard, and if I get to 500 it is a major success.For comparison: 68 subscribers at the end of 2014, up from 50 at the end of 2013.In addition, I am assuming that video views to subscribers will continue to stay at a 300:1 ratio. This is just an estimate that I’d like to check in a year, and not a goal.


December 2014 Progress

Happy new year, folks!

December was a pretty good month. AdSense revenue hit a new record – at just under 5 Euro. YouTube, as always, needs a few weeks more, but should be a tiny tad over 1 Euro, making December my second best month so far. It’s still all pocket change, I know, but I am still happy about it.

Pageviews remained stable, despite Christmas and New Year being a low-traffic period. I did okay on the content creation form, posting just a tad less and uploading just a few videos less than in November.

Of note is that I started networking and will collaborate with one other YouTuber in 2015. I literally spent the last hours of 2014 to discuss projects with him for the new year.

  • Estimated Revenue: 6 Euro
  • Total pageviews: Up 100, at just under 5300
  • New Posts: 19 (not including any previously queued)
  • New Videos: 8 (not including queued ones)
  • Youtube subscribers: 67

Effect of Unfollowing Twitter Followers

I hardly use Twitter. I know I should use it more, but I just don’t find the time. It is made worse because my historically “main” account is following a ton of people who hardly ever post anything that is relevant to me. I figured if I can reduce the floodwave of tweets, I might be able to actually read some.

So I began to unfollow everybody on my account that I felt was just worsening the signal-to-noise rate dramatically. You know the sort of account – mostly blatant self-promotion.

I reduced the amount of twitter accounts I follow from ~220 down to ~40. I knew that doing this would cost me, and thanks to twittercounter I can also show you a neat graph:



My own activity did not change significantly during this time period; if anything it increased somewhat in February when I was hosting a blog carnival. So as you can see, about 30% of the accounts I unfollowed have a “follow-to-follow” policy.

At first glance this may seem fairly nasty; my followers dropped by 20%. But then again, these followers are probably worthless (again, from a marketing point of view) so about the only negative effect is that my profile shows lower numbers than before.

Game Theory on YouTube Subscriber Retention


I like Game Theory and MatPat covered something completely different this week – the YouTube subscriber system. Main takeaways:

  • You need to keep your subscribers engaged
  • You must make sure not to overload them with content
  • You ought to upload at least once every two weeks

This is surely not a complete overview, but a good video to watch as a starter. I can confirm from my, admittedly circumstantial, evidence that I had the best streak of growth when I was posting 1-2 videos a week for a few months last year.

I’ll absolutely take this into account in the future and see how it goes.

November 2014 Progress

It occurred to me that I should call these posts “Progress”, because there is so little of it. 🙂

Adsense improved a bit, but it’s still at the same rough level as it has been for several months. To make up for it, YouTube revenue dropped by about the same amount. With only December to go, it seems that my monthly average increased from 1.67 Euro in 2013 to about 3.60 Euro.Or in other words, if I had no expenses at all, it’d pay for one lunch a month. Of course I do have expenses and so it’s an overall loss.

In regards of content creation, November was another fairly unproductive month, the reasons can easily be found in my “real life”. I am especially disappointed that I did not work on a blog that covers a science fiction universe; while that doesn’t generate revenue (no ads) I think it has good long-term potential. On the plus side, I created a fair amount of material for my YouTube channel. a number of them are queued for December, though.

One of the things I’ll do in December is a graph that shows how many posts and videos I created over time – I am absolutely convinced that there is a direct correlation between what growth I had and posting new content consistently.

  • Estimated Revenue: About 3 Euro, again YouTube will take time
  • Total pageviews: Just under 5000. The drop is mostly from my long-running Role-Playing/Worldbuilding blog which I have neglected way too much.
  • New Posts: 21 (a few queued for December)
  • New Videos: 11 (half of them queued for December)
  • Youtube subscribers: Steady at 68


October 2014 Progress

Slow month. Adsense continues to do its dance and October it bounced down again – but since it’s still comparable to August it’s no real reason to be disappointed; instead I’ll just have to keep in mind that it’s so very random at such low levels.

It does seem that I have a few cents most days – maybe some sort of baseline is forming? At any rate, pageviews are stable, which is good, it’s just that blogs performed better in October which don’t generate revenue.

In other, and somewhat better, news: I’ve been doing well on the content creation front: I published two videos and fifteen posts across my blogs.

  • Estimated revenue at 3€ – again, YouTube will take another two weeks to give me finalized numbers.
  • Total pageviews 6274, up from 6138.
  • Youtube climbed to 68 subscribers, from 66.