Lights, camera, action! The camera blinks a soft red glow, microphone positioned just right, headphones sitting comfortably on the head and computer kicking into action, emitting a low monotone hum.

It’s just another day for Daniel Hong (11) and Nico Miguel (11), rising stars of the Minecraft YouTuber scene, filming yet another video for millions of their viewers. After immense success on their individual channels, the two have worked together to start the YouTube Production Club in 2021, a club dedicated to teaching others how to cultivate a YouTube channel of their own.

Miguel, known as NotNico on YouTube, although just a junior, has five years of experience as a YouTuber. Starting in 2017, Nico began his YouTube career, accumulating 862,000 subscribers through his love for Minecraft over the years.

“I always enjoyed watching Minecraft videos. And as a kid, I just liked playing the game,” Miguel said “My dad introduced me to editing. So then from that I was like, ‘Okay, let’s make YouTube videos.’”

Similarly, Hong shares a love for Minecraft as well. However, he first grew his online presence through a different medium — music.

“…I was doing music, and one of my songs hit 10,000 streams on Spotify,” Hong said.

Known as Koryin on Spotify, Hong currently has 14,000 monthly listeners. Surprisingly, Miguel and Hong’s partnership was formed out of pure coincidence.

“In one of my classes, we did an All-About-Me Google Slides class assignment, and my teacher said to pick a random slide,” Hong said.

“And by pure luck, I chose the slide which was after Nico’s. We were supposed to grade the slide after us, and while Nico was grading mine, he saw that I did music.”

Intrigued by Hong’s background in music production, Miguel reached out to Hong via school email asking if he wanted to be friends.

“I was like, ‘You know what, why not? Sure,’” Hong said.

Hong’s half-hearted approach toward his friendship with Miguel quickly developed into a strong bond between the two, leading Hong to find out about Miguel’s YouTube career.

“I found out that he was a YouTuber, and then he told me that I should try it. I didn’t really think much of it but I tried it and started liking it,” Hong (11) said.

Contrary to popular belief, being a YouTuber is a labor-intensive job. When it comes to the world of entertainment, fresh content is in constant demand, not meeting that demand means the death of a channel.

“Innovating and adapting is really important because YouTube is a volatile and inconsistent job,” Miguel said. “Some months are just not gonna be as good as others. But if you consistently adapt, then you’ll survive.”

Expanding their horizons from focusing only on their channels, Miguel and Hong started their YouTube Production Club.

“We started the club mainly to find people that are interested in doing YouTube and want to create a successful channel…,” Miguel said.

In addition, Hong and Miguel also created the club to break down inaccurate assumptions about YouTubers and inspire others to try content creation.

“I always had the impression that YouTubers were born into it, [as in] you have to be a certain type of person to do YouTube,” Hong said. “But after seeing Nico and behind the scenes, it was like a slap in the face. I realized that anybody could do it, and I thought it’d be cool to inspire others to do the same.”

Unlike most clubs, the YouTube Production Club doesn’t hold meetings.

Instead, Miguel and Hong post their lessons on a Google Classroom as the knowledge required to edit videos is impossible to teach over weekly meetings.

“There’s just so much information…that without a visual example it’s hard for us to [teach]. We’ll record 30 long minute videos and put it in the Google Classroom,” Hong said.

Regardless of who you are, Hong and Miguel believe that everyone should try becoming a YouTuber.

“It’s a great way to express your creativity … and it’s always fun doing something new and different,” Hong said.

Furthermore, YouTube has the potential to open up various career opportunities.

“YouTubers can do anything. They do boxing; they open up restaurants,” Hong said.

YouTube also teaches lasting lessons important to becoming successful in any business.

“You learn so much. You learn how to do video editing, learn how to hire people. There’s also a bit of psychology involved because you learn marketing,” Miguel said.

Aside from technical skills, YouTube can also teach one to have a good mindset.

“You have to always strive for something above you, and you have to let your emotions drive you to try to become the best YouTuber, but you can’t let emotions impact your business mindset when doing deals and when talking to the media,” Hong (11) said.

Financially, YouTube can prove to be a lucrative source of income.

“You’re not earning $10 a day one year and then $20 the next, it’s more like you’re earning $5 today, and then the next day, it becomes $1,000 a day, and the next day grows to $10,000 a day,”said Miguel.

Regardless of the hurdles of becoming a successful YouTuber, the most important step towards becoming one, like most things, is the first step.

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