Channel Mum’s April Vlog 20

Introducing… the lineup for our latest Vlog 20 – the Channel Mum roundup of the most engaging & high-reach YouTube channels for mums.

The top four channels remain unchallenged, with Ruth Crilly’s A Model Recommends channel moving into fifth place just a couple of weeks before her baby is due – congratulations, Ruth, and we hope to see lots of mum videos popping up onto your channel after the arrival of your little one!

Zoe Ball’s Off Air Channel has made it into the list for the first time thanks to Zoe starting a series on her channel called Mums Off Air in which she interviews her celeb mum friends, meaning that we can now count her as a mum vlogger – welcome to the clan, Zoe!

We’ve been keeping an eye on Telegraph journalist Bryony Gordon’s One Fat Mother channel since it launched earlier this year and now that it has hit the 1000 subscriber mark it also qualifies for entry to the Vlog 20 – congrats to Bryony who has covered an impressive range of topics since she launched her channel, from baby sleep to flying with children and fussy eaters.

Also new to the list is Percy & Grace – a blogger and vlogger who has been sharing videos about her family life since her baby Grace was born just over a year ago. A big high five to Rebecca, who is the mum behind the channel, for making the list!

If you have a YouTube channel for mums that has 1000 subscribers or more and is not yet on the Vlog 20, do let us know.

Well done to all 20 of you – and here’s to another month of successful vlogging!

 

Another month; another gang of lovely Channel Mum vloggers

Our little family of Channel Mum sponsored vloggers is growing nicely, with a continuous stream of applications coming in each month. This month we’re very excited to share the four new mums who we’ve selected to join our merry team of vloggers:

Alice Young: Alice, aged 21, is mum to Amelia.  Like another of our vloggers, Isabel Brandon, Alice fell pregnant whilst at university.  She’s raising Amelia as a single mum and says:

“Families come in all shapes and sizes and mine happens to be a young single mum living with her parents raising her own daughter. It’s amazing to see the bond Amelia has with her grandparents grow and we all live a happy (most of the time) life together. I would love to show that it is ok for your family not to be a dictionary version but being different still means you can do just as much.”

Sophie Notarbartolo: Sophie works as a maternity assistant and breastfeeding support worker at Bournemouth Hospital and is mummy to baby Theo.  Before she started a family, she had a pressurised job in a bank and feels that becoming a mum gave her the direction and fulfilment that was missing in her life.  We’re excited to welcome someone who looks after other mums as her profession – Sophie’s mantra is: “We are the parents! Trust your gut, you know your baby so you do whatever you need to whenever…”

Emma Bailey: Londoner Emma has two children and enjoys making the most of everything London life has to offer to her family. She’s a stay-at-home mum and wants to use her vlog to show other parents that they are not the only ones who have to deal with tantrums in a restaurant!

Lucy Aitken Read: 32-year old Lucy upped sticks from the UK and moved her family to a farm in New Zealand when her second child was born.  Lucy is an expert in natural beauty and writes a magazine column on the subject, as well as being a proponent of attachment parenting.  She wants her channel to be very practical with lots of hands-on tutorials, presented with humour and tapping into everyone’s inner earth mother!

A big welcome on board to these lovely ladies, who we will start working with a little later in the summer, when they will each receive their Panasonic camcorders.

Oh…and if you haven’t yet subscribed to our YouTube channel yet, now is a very good time to do so as there will be LOTS of exciting goings-on over there very soon!

Channel Mum’s March Vlog 20

If you’ve been waiting for it – here we have it!  March’s Vlog 20 – our list of the top 20 mum YouTube channels, determined by their engagement and reach.

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The list sees one new entry – entering in joint 19th place is the S Walker Makeup channel, home to beauty vlogger Sara, who became a mum just last week!  Sara announced her pregnancy on her channel in January after much speculation from her viewers and social media followers.  Since then she’s shared videos about her pregnancy and baby with her followers, meaning that we can welcome her into the Channel Mum Vlog 20 Family!

Oh and we couldn’t resist sharing a pic of Sara with her gorgeous new baby, either.

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If you’re interested in taking a look at how the list breaks down in to reach and engagement specifically, here are those results.  As always, a huge congratulations to everyone who made the list and for all the energy that you put into making great videos for us to watch!

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Meet this month’s Channel Mum sponsored talent

It’s been just over a month since we announced the first Channel Mum sponsored vloggers, who have already been making brilliant progress.  And now we’re ready to share the new selection of mums to join our stellar vlogging lineup!  Without further ado:

SJ Ljungstrom juggles being mum to her two sons with her job as a director at a top London advertising agency. She admits to finding life as a working mum a struggle sometimes and will be talking about the challenges and highs & lows, as well as trying to debunk “the myth that career mums aren’t fantastic mums”.

kiddycharts.com is a blog run by Helen Neale, which specialises in offering parents personalised charts to download and print to help kids with anything from potty training to fussy eating.  We’ll be working with Helen to share the charts with mums on YouTube in video format, so if you’re looking for a helping hand to encourage a certain behaviour in your child, Helen’s new channel will be the place to go!

Stacey Leigh had her daughter, who is now nine, when she was just nineteen.  She was a single mum until she met her husband who she has been married to for three years, with a baby boy born last year. Stacey will be vlogging about topics such as how to start a relationship when there are children involved, as well as taking up studying as a mum and getting your confidence back after having children. She impressed the judges with her down to earth personality and ideas for her channel.

Charlie O’Brien joins the Channel Mum stable as a new mum – her little boy is just a few weeks old – and intends to make her channel stand out from the crowd by offering a female & male take on life as parents, by having her partner join her in her videos.  Charlie is a presenter for a national radio station – we’re really excited that she’s stepping out in front of the camera and joining our team!

Laura Oakley is also a new mum.  Aged just 21, Laura’s motto as a mum is “just go with it” and she’ll be talking about how she applies this to everything that parenthood throws at her from the cold, hard truths about pregnancy, to her labour story and beyond.

Charlotte Peach approached us with a very honest idea for her channel. Having developed OCD during pregnancy, Charlotte tried to find videos on YouTube from other mums about maternal OCD but struggled to find anything “as we’re all expected to say how happy we are”.  Charlotte’s channel will see her sharing her experiences of mental health issues and her journey back to a more fulfilled, happy life.

Alex Gladwin is a soon-to-be mum of two, who the judges felt was immediately likeable and watchable. The challenges of juggling a new baby with a toddler is something that lots of us face at some point so we’re really looking forward to watching Alex’s videos about how she gets on with this new stage of motherhood.  Alex is also a strict vegetarian so we’ll be looking out for tasty meat-free inspiration on her channel!

We’ll be sharing an update on how all our sponsored vloggers are getting on very soon – a hearty congratulations to our newest recruits!

Becoming a Channel Mum Vlogger, by Isabel Brandon

One of our inaugural Channel Mum sponsored vloggers, Isabel, has written a post over on her blog about becoming a Channel Mum vlogger. Isabel kindly let us share her post here. Don’t forget to check out her YouTube channel to watch her in action too!

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WHY I STARTED VLOGGING

Initially, vlogging was an exciting way to create a log of my new life with a little family.  It enables me to watch Oliver grow and develop in forms other than memories and photographs only. As well as getting out the family photo albums in years to come, it will be ‘Come on, let’s watch The Pudding Diaries first Christmas vlog’.

Not only will it be lovely for me to reminisce, but Oliver himself will be able to watch them and see how much everyone loves him. 

Due to me having a gap year, I think I also needed a challenge to keep myself mentally stimulated (as if looking after a baby isn’t mentally challenging enough!) and it allows me to express my creative side.

Anyone who know’s me personally will know I am a painfully awkward person when it comes to things like holding eye contact in conversations.   I am well known for my even more awkward goodbye-hugs with my friends, and these are people I’ve known for years!

So for me to be able to put a camera in my face and to feel completely relaxed really perplexes me. This is not saying that vlogging has ‘cured my awkwardness’, just brought out a (well needed) confidence. Plus, having a baby has given me an awful lot to talk about.

My vlogs are heavily inspired by my favourite YouTuber’s such as Hannah Maggs and the Saccone family.

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WHY I APPLIED FOR THE SPONSORSHIP

Putting out snippets of your personal life isn’t for everyone. I don’t think some people understood why I made the vlogs initially. I’m sure I’ve seen a few eyes roll when the camera comes out. However, when I discovered Channel Mum I also discovered a community of other parent vloggers such as myself!

I applied for their sponsorship because vlogging was something I was really, really enjoying and I’d love to share a realistic insight of life as a young mum with a premature baby to others. Not only to create awareness, but also to offer advice and support and also share stories with people in my situation.

I’m going to be honest, I didn’t think I’d have any chance of being accepted but it just goes to show it doesn’t hurt to try!  (I nearly even gave up filling out the application form because I was trying to fill it out on my phone and it was quite stressful haha!)

PLANS/HOPES FOR MY CHANNEL

This is the first time I’ve actually sat down and thought about my plans and hopes for my channel. 

I plan to carry on with The Pudding Diaries vlogs but I am also beginning to introduce slightly different videos.  For example, my mini ‘Getting to know us’ series.

I hope my channel will be accepted into the parent vlogging world.

I’ve quickly come to realise it is a lovely community of people with a variety of stories and backgrounds.  It’s exciting finding mums in similar life situations where you can ‘compare notes’.  It is equally as interesting listening to peoples stories who’s lives couldn’t be more different to your own.

WHAT I’VE LEARNT SO FAR

In my (relatively) short time I have been vlogging, I’ve learnt that being yourself is key. You can build up a trust with your viewers if you’re being 100% honest. Also, it further builds your confidence knowing people like you for who you really are.

Also, I’ve learnt not to ‘force it’.  If I don’t feel like vlogging, I don’t.  I believe it is hugely important to only vlog if I’m enjoying it.

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So, thanks again to Channel Mum for this amazing opportunity. I’m so happy to be part of the vlogging family.

Please check out my channel HERE!

From Vlog 15 to Vlog 20

We first released the Channel Mum Vlog 15 – our roundup of the top UK YouTube channels for mums – back in December.  And just three months later we’re really excited to say that the Channel Mum Vlog 15 is now the Vlog 20.

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We publish the list every month and as we’ve been doing so, we’ve seen a steady increase in the number of mums vlogging on YouTube and – crucially for the Vlog 20 – hitting the 1000 subscriber mark, which means that they are eligible to make the list.

This month’s includes a number of newly established channels, including one fronted by celebrity mum Michelle Heaton who has attracted over 200,000 views of her channel since it launched in November 2014.  The ‘Michelle Heaton In Reality’ channel features videos with Michelle vlogging about health and fitness, the red carpet and motherhood, with one of her most popular videos last month offering advice on how to throw a Frozen birthday party.

One of YouTube’s top beauty vloggers Ruth Crilly also makes the list for the first time this month. Ruth, who has nearly 300k subscribers on her channel ‘A Model Recommends’, is pregnant with her first child and has begun vlogging about her pregnancy.  Vloggers need to make at least one family-related video per month to make the list, which means Ruth has joined the other 19 channels in the Vlog 20.

Other channels making the list for the first time include Belles Boutique, fronted by mum Laura whose channel has an impressive 18,000 subscribers and Emma Ross’ Mamalina channel, which just hit 1000 subscribers.

The Saccone-Jolys channel, fronted by vlogger Anna and husband Jonathan tops the combined engagement & reach chart this month, seeing off competition from Louise Pentland’s Sprinkle of Chatter channel, which took first place in the previous two months.  Sprinkle of Chatter was knocked out of the Vlog 20 completely this month, as none of her videos were family-related.

Huge congratulations to everyone who made the list this month – as well as to the many new UK-based channels that are popping up for mums – welcome to the family!

Why didn’t you choose me?

If you applied for Channel Mum’s new talent sponsorship, you’ll have heard last week whether you were chosen or not. This post is for those of you who weren’t chosen.

By now, you may have told yourself it was just a silly vlogging competition anyway. You don’t really care. Move on. You possibly didn’t tell your partner or your mum or your friends you applied, and you certainly don’t want to tell them you weren’t selected, so no words of comfort or the companionable “they don’t know what they are talking about” from them.

I just want to acknowledge you and that I know you will have felt at least a moment of the hurt that comes with rejection.  But mostly I want to add to that and to say bloody well done for applying. I hope that doesn’t sound patronising, but I want to say it. You took a risk, you put yourself out there in a very personal way.

You’ll have been told by us that you can apply again. So should you?

We can learn a lot from our children…if they want to do something and fail, you can see them having a bit of think…how much do I want to do this? If the answer is ‘not that much’ they wander off to do something else. If the answer is ‘a lot’ they keep trying. Balancing the bricks, solving the puzzle, climbing the tree.

So ask yourself, was your application a bit of a whim? Or do you really, really want to be a vlogger. If you do, please do try again.

This time, do something different. Ignore every other vlogger out there. What you would tell your children? I think it would be: “Be yourself. People will love you for who you really are”.

There is no formula for successful mummy vlogging. The best way I can describe it to you is by saying we want to recreate the global village of parenting. If you lived in an old-fashioned village you’d have access to the wisdom or company of lots of relatives and friends – the cake-maker, the curtain-maker, the teacher, the one who is good with choosing the right colour paint for your hall, the one who always knows a good recipe or a good remedy…you’d ask their advice and while you were there, have a cup of tea and a chat about your lives. As you found out a bit more about her, you’d come to know her story. You might become good friends, or you might just go back next time you need advice on that subject.

Ask yourself: in this village, why would someone knock on your door? Who are you really? What do you know? What do you love? What are you good at? What is your story?

“How to vlog the limelight”

Channel Mum’s Siobhan has shared her top five tips for aspiring vloggers in today’s Metro:

1. Decide your USP: what’s your speciality?

2. Be authentic: and that means being yourself!

3. Don’t spend hours procrastinating: be natural, not scripted

4. Appearances matter: what’s in the background of your videos?

5. Get to grips with the geeky stuff: use Google analytics to find out how well your videos are doing

Read Siobhan’s tips in more detail here.

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Introducing…Channel Mum’s Sponsored New Talent

When we launched Channel Mum back in January, we announced that we were looking for new talent to join our sponsorship programme and invited mums across the UK to apply for the opportunity.  It’s fair to say that we were pretty bowled over by the response!

We’ve received hundreds of applications. And along with each application came a unique story: mums who had gone through the agony of trying to conceive for a long time; young mums; mums to children with special needs; earth mothers; career girls; military wives and single mums.  And so many equally unique ideas for YouTube channels and content. Our panel of judges really had their work cut out for them in selecting the first group of channels to offer sponsorship to.

But they did, and today we are delighted to announce the first of the year’s successful entrants.  We’ve selected nine channels for sponsorship.  Some have already begun their vlogging journey; others just have an idea for the shape they would like their channel to take.  We’ll be working with each of them to develop their channel over the coming months and will share their progress as we do so but in the meantime, here’s a glimpse of them:

Lauren Brown: Lauren has two children, aged 8 and 10. Her background was in the fashion industry but she is now a stay-at-home mum who’s looking to “reconnect with her mojo” through vlogging after devoting the last few years to motherhood. Lauren also has a disability and will be sharing the story of how she copes with that with her viewers.

Hey Mummy TV: Katy Pullinger & Anna Cribb have four children aged 3-8 between them and another on the way.  They launched their channel in October 2014, offering two perspectives and two opinions on all-things parenting.

Lauren Hampshire: Lauren is a trained broadcast journalist and producer and mum to her 21-month old daughter. She’s not yet on YouTube but the panel praised her application video for being “cheery but honest”.

Jessica Thornton: Jess is mum to a nine-month old boy and soon to be step-mum, when she marries her “tattooed bloke” later this year. She wants to ensure that her channel has “no sugar coating”.

Isabel Brandon: Isabel was catapulted into motherhood when she fell pregnant whilst living in a house share at university, at the age of 20. She’ll be vlogging about life as a young mum and about coping with the birth of a premature baby, which she has first-hand experience of after her son was born eleven weeks early.

Jen Townsend: Jen is a new mum – her baby boy was born in December 2014.  She describes herself pre-baby as “very career driven, ambitious and focused on my career goals” as well as being very active. She’s now in the process of getting used to a totally new way of life as a mum and will be vlogging about her personal experiences of issues such as breastfeeding, finding your identity as a mum and the impact of having a baby on your relationship.

Maria Noell: Maria describes herself as an earth mother: “barefoot with a love of the outdoors, happiest when camping, passionate about a healthy, centred but active lifestyle”. She became a mum aged 22 and has written in a diary since she was very young and is now excited about turning her diary into a vlog.

Mummy Nutter: Laura juggles her fashion career with having two children under three. In a departure from much of the mum content on YouTube which is focused on diary-style videos and hauls, she wants to make her channel informative and topic-led, sharing her take on issues such as potty training, teeth cleaning, weaning and holidaying with kids.

Rachel Brady: Former party girl Rachel now lives on a farm in Derbyshire and has two children. She’ll be focusing on cooking on her channel and will be filming rural farm-life – complete with chickens – though “it won’t be all perfect and lifestyle porn-y: it will be messy and real”!

So there we have it – the first Channel Mum-sponsored vloggers! We’re really excited about working with each of them to help them realise their vlogging potential. Stay tuned to hear more from them, and if you’d like to apply for the opportunity, you can do so at any time throughout the year.

 

 

From Blogging to Vlogging: it’s easy, right?

Since we launched we’ve heard from many successful bloggers who are looking to make the leap from blogging to vlogging. Some have already dabbled in making videos, some have already established a successful video channel and others are nervously looking at YouTube and wondering how best to go from being behind a blog to in front of a camera.

Whilst researching the UK mum vlogging ‘scene’ we’ve checked out hundreds and hundreds of channels, and wanted to share our three top pointers for becoming a successful blogger-turned-vlogger:

1. Develop your own YouTube identity:

If you want your YouTube channel to simply be an extension of your blog, then it makes absolute sense for you to refer to your blog frequently in your videos. But if you are serious about ‘making it’ on YouTube then you need to assume that people watching your videos are not aware of your blog.  Think of your audience as being distinct, and having different needs to your blog readers.

If people stumble upon one of your videos within YouTube and are not in the blogging community, they will be instantly confused if you open your video with a reference to your blog.  The Red Ted Art channel is a good example of how to achieve success on YouTube that is distinct to a blog: the videos can be watched in complete isolation of the related blog – in fact you wouldn’t necessarily know they were associated with a blog at all, hence the channel is attracting lots of views from within YouTube itself.

Of course the name of the channel and the branding can still be the same as your blog, but you should think carefully about this. With a few exceptions, most of the channels by the big vloggers out there (not just in the mum world) simply name their channel after themselves, without giving it another name. YouTube is about feeling a real rapport with the person you’re watching and getting to know them as an individual, a person, a face – it’s a very different dynamic to that with a blog, in which you can read and connect with post without really getting to know its author in any meaningful way. To do well on YouTube, you generally need to build your brand as an individual, and that usually (but not always!) means your name should be somewhere prominent on your channel, if not in the name itself.

2. Create memorable, unique content – in the same way you do for your blog:

This sounds really obvious!  But bloggers pour so much energy into creating really distinctive posts for their blog that make for brilliant reading and are based on really shareable and relatable topics.  The same needs to be the case on your YouTube channel.  There is so much samey content on YouTube – hauls, day in the life, what’s in my changing bag.  There is a demand for that content, sure, but if you really want to stand out and get cut-through, you need to think outside of the box in exactly the same way that you do when coming up with ideas for your blog. Come up with an overall proposition for your channel – a USP, if you like, that will set it apart from other mum channels – and create content that fits with that overall philosophy or positioning. 

3. Look for new ways to promote your vlog:

Many bloggers have really impressive readership and social media figures and your existing channels are absolutely a great starting point to promote your YouTube channel. But YouTube opens up so many opportunities to reach new audiences that you are not currently talking to and the most successful vloggers build specific audiences for their YouTube channel.  The people who read your blog won’t necessarily be the ones who watch your videos.  If you get your content right (see above point!) then you should attract viewers direct through YouTube and there are heaps of other opportunities to promote your channel if it is offering something distinctive to everything else out there. In the same way that you had to work had to build up your blog readership in the early days, it’s really worth doing the same for your YouTube channel and that probably means looking outside of the audience for your blog and social channels.

Have you got any more thoughts about “making the leap”?! Tweet us at @channel mum and let us know!

Scouting for vlogging talent, by Meryl Hoffman

Meryl Hoffman is one of the judges of our new talent sponsorship programme.  Meryl is the owner and managing director of MHM – a London-based talent management agency that represents an all-star roster, including Zoe Ball, who recently started her own YouTube channel, ‘Zoe Ball OFF AIR’.  We asked Meryl to tell us what she would be looking for when assessing entries from aspiring vloggers.

Hello, I am thrilled to be involved with Channel Mum and cannot wait to watch your vlog entries. Personally, I’m looking for someone who has the ability to engage with their audience in a unique, passionate, informed and exciting way. I want to feel I’m watching a vlog where someone inherently understands their audience and is using a range of techniques to achieve this. This could be done through tone, quirky endearing habits, choices of topic and sense of humour. I’m also looking for consistency – is this person prepared to commit to finding and building their audience with regular vlogs and consistent quality? If so, I’m in… where do I subscribe?!

Meryl

My top tips for vlogging:

1)Understanding your audience – get active in your audience’s community. Read and comment on other people’s channels, become part of the conversation. Join Twitter and start following other vloggers/bloggers/journalists within the community. If you put the effort in, people will find you. (Become a member of the tribe you’re trying to lead!)

2) Be yourself. Start with topics you feel comfortable with. Keep it genuine, passionate, enthusiastic and filled with honesty. For extra content ideas, generate these from your audience – create facebook posts and ask questions on Twitter. If you’re aware of what the ‘demand’ is – you can create and supply the answers. (Do regularly ask yourself, would someone share this with a friend? Make it worth referencing.)

3) Make sure you can be seen and heard. Good lighting always helps – you can start off with a small desk light, try out different positions to ensure your face is visible, then progress onto a ‘box light’ which are available from Amazon at a reasonable price. Look at the camera- not to the side! Finally, make sure to speak clearly and turn off any distracting background noises –  unless it’s your child(!)

4) Always good to get practicing before you start, practice filming angles, practice ideas, practice editing – become familiar with your surroundings and learn what makes you feel the most comfortable. Also, it’s handy to imagine you’re ‘chatting’ to a good friend behind the camera.

5) Consistency – upload regularly once a week and you’ll soon build a following. Remember, it’s much easier to lose your subscribers than gain them – be consistent and be QUALITY.

And finally, ENJOY IT! Vlogging should be an activity that you love. A space just for you.

Channel Mum’s January Vlog 15

As reported in The Drum, we’re publishing the Channel Mum January Vlog 15 today. In case you missed our introduction to the Vlog 15, which we launched last year, you can read about it here.

Despite the top end of the list looking pretty similar to last month’s, with Anna Saccone and Sprinkle of Chatter still battling it out for the top places, closely followed by Bubz and then Hannah MaggsGiovanna Fletcher and Dolly Bow Bow, there has been quite a bit of movement within the rest of the list.

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New entries include Natasha Bailie and 2.2. Children and A Dog, both of whom qualified for the Vlog 15 for the first time this month having hit 1000 subscribers.  Due to strong engagement with their content, they pushed out some of the more established creators who were in the list last month, with Natasha’s channel scoring an impressive 5th for engagement in the overall list, and 7th overall.

A special mention also to Hannah Maggs, who topped the list for engagement, beating off competition channels with seven times as many subscribers as her own.  The engagement score factors in a number of metrics including interactions with content as a proportion of views and YouTube’s all-important watch-time.

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Also making their first appearance on the Vlog 15 are Lumdeedums, Lucie & The Bump and Red Ted Art, each bringing something new to the type of content that makes up the top channels.

Lumdeedums vlogs about her experiences of surrogacy here in the UK, providing a personal and unique perspective on an issue that isn’t widely spoken about elsewhere.  The crafts content on Red Ted Art, already an established blog and book, has been translated by its creator in Maggy Woodley into video content for YouTube with great success.  And finally we see an entry from Lucie of Lucie & The Bump, who shared the news this month that her baby, Harry, will be receiving a life-changing operation.

Videos made by those in the Vlog 15 in January clocked nearly 11 million views between them, showing the sheer scale of the mum community on YouTube.  Congratulations to everyone on the list – we’re already looking forward to seeing what next month holds!

YouTube to educate brands on working with creators

YouTube announced yesterday (17th Feb 2015) that it will be airing a documentary, offering brands advice on working with talent on the platform.

Anomaly, who are the creative agency behind the documentary – called The Creators – have released a trailer featuring some of YouTube’s biggest UK stars including, of course, Zoella.

Following the ASA ruling at the end of 2014, which banned a campaign by Oreos due to vloggers not making clear enough the fact that they had been paid by Oreo to feature their products in content, it seems that YouTube are taking steps to clarify the ways that brands can harness the power and influence that its creators hold.

Tune in to see the full-length documentary on 11 March 2015.

 

My Journey to 1000 Subscribers, by 2.2 Children & A Dog

Last week one of our favourite YouTube channels, 2.2 Children & A Dog, hit 1000 subscribers.  We asked the mummy vlogger behind the channel, Jess, to tell us more about her journey to achieving this milestone:

When I first started YouTube just over two years ago, I really had no idea where it would go or how well I would be received but recently my channel hit 1000 subscribers. That’s a thousand people…WOW! If I’m being completely honest I’m overjoyed but also at the same time I’m totally lost for words.

Back in 2012 I stumbled across a few mummy vloggers sharing their tips, experiences and general family life. Just watching them in their day to day lives gave me the confidence to pick up my camera, start recording and share my side of motherhood. That same year my first upload was of my daughter Sophie learning how to crawl and within few days I got my first subscriber.

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Coming this far has not come without a lot of hard work and patience. If you were to ask me how to get 1000 subscribers on YouTube, my answer would be this:

Do what you do for you, be yourself, enjoy it and wait.

The fact of the matter is that I really love making videos on YouTube and in the process of working on my channel, I have had the privilege in making some great friends. Sometimes I will admit I have had the rare day where I’ve been in two minds whether to continue on my journey, but this has generally been down to some negative feedback. Negative feedback that we are all going to get once in a while because let’s face it, you’re putting yourself out there to be judged by others.

When it all comes down to it though I really love doing what I do, I love sharing my life and my experiences with others. Some of my videos I even like watch over and over again just because I think they’re enjoyable, and if it wasn’t for YouTube I wouldn’t have these fabulous memories of my beautiful children. I find if you can produce something that you want to watch then eventually you will find someone else that wants to watch it too.

I also find that it’s important to keep in touch with your viewers. I try to get back to everyone that contacts me either in comments, email and messages and I take time to talk to those people who contact me or those people who have questions and stumble my way.

The future for 2.2 Children And A Dog? Keeping up the regular vlogs is a must for me, but I do also have a few ideas up my sleeve which I’m looking forward to sharing with everyone.

Overall, YouTube is about making memories and having fun, and if you have fun, you will find that others have fun too!

‘An ordinary mum, doing ordinary things’ by Mummy Nutter

The lovely Mummy Nutter has written this guest post for us about why she decided to start her new vlog just a few weeks ago. We’re looking for more guest contributors, so please get in touch if you have something to share.  

In the meantime, over to Mummy Nutter!

I’m mummy nutter; I’m mummy to 2 gorgeous girls (Hope 2.5yrs and Margot 5 months) and my maiden name is Nutter – which sort of sums me up perfectly.

Before I became a mum I would have described myself as fiercely ambitious; and am not ashamed to say I questioned whether having children was the right thing to do at the time. I have since come to the conclusion that it’s never a good time to have kids; so you may as well get on with it. My order of doing things wasn’t conventional – career, baby, new job, marriage and then another baby. Although I went back to work (in the fashion industry) and intend on doing so again later this year, I have never been more comfortable with the fact that I am a working mother.

My first maternity leave was spent mainly sweating and panicking about everything parental. I wore my ‘L’ plates visibly with everything I did. I was under confident and trying to be perfect – a deadly combination!

I was the mum who sang the wrong words in nursery rhymes at bounce and rhyme, but kept going even though I hated every moment of it. I’m the mum who had never used a food blender before weaning and then quickly realised pouches were the way forward and I’m the mum who lay awake at night worrying about all my parenting inadequacies.

My second maternity leave in complete contrast has been a breath of fresh air; I am loving every second and mainly because I’m so much more relaxed and have stopped trying to be perfect.

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The downside to breastfeeding is giving yourself thumb ache from too much time spent on the iphone, which is how I ended up spending way too much money shopping online, became a secret dailymailonline reader (shameful I know) and discovered YouTube! Ok, so I know who Zoella is (thanks to Vogue Nov 2014 issue) but had never considered it a tool for learning / exploring parenting tips.  Like my friends I used Google on a daily basis and found myself trawling through forums where everyone had conflicting opinions; so how did I know who to trust? They could be childless maniacs for all I knew.

I searched YouTube for mummy vloggers, excited to see who could be my virtual friend, who I would trust because I could ‘see’ them in their own homes. I imagined following ‘cool mums’, where I would get inspiration on fashion and lifestyle as well as how to raise my kids ‘cool’. I searched and searched and found no one I could relate too. So I thought I’d give it a go – I love a project and a sense of purpose and so, with my ipad and a few spare moments when Margot was sleeping and Hope was at nursery I started mummy nutter. I’ve since discovered a some fab mummy vloggers but it’s so hard to find what you’re looking for on YouTube, which is why I’m so happy that Channel Mum is here to bring us all together!

My tagline is ‘an ordinary mum doing ordinary things’ and I’m the first to admit this sounds horrific, but I’m hoping that YouTube will become the new forum for mums to communicate, a way for people to see ‘REAL’ mums in action and find people they can relate to.

My videos are not perfect, they don’t have Diptique candles and fairy lights in the background and I certainly wouldn’t dream of telling anyone that the way I do things is the best way; everyone is different and should do whatever feels right for them. My channel is just me sharing my parenting journey with what I’ve learnt along the way.

My parenting style certainly isn’t wholesome; I don’t cook everything from scratch, my children had dummies (gasp, I know!), I still swear (more in my head these days) and I still have the occasional melt down BUT I’m a nice person, I give everything a go, I’m always positive, I love to make a vision board, totally believe in Karma and most importantly I love my children beyond measure. Plus, if my new channel keeps me out of bounce and rhyme I’ll be a better mother for it!

 

Opening the door

Just before the launch of anything new is an exciting but scary time.

I remember taking over the running of an almost defunct toddler group when my first child was about two. I gave all the toys a good clean, got some new ones by begging for donations, bought some posh biscuits and replaced the Mellow Bird’s coffee with Nescafe (no one drank skinny lattes back then). And I put the word out: leaflets at the doctors and on church hall noticeboards.

And nervously I opened the door at 10am. A long line of buggies and mums and babies and toddlers were waiting outside, and more followed behind. The hall was full and noisy; the toddlers ran round in circles or rode little trucks like dodgem cars, the babies sat mesmerised in the baby corner and the mums chatted. Then we sat in a big wide circle and sang all my favourites (My top 3: Dingle Dangle Scarecrow, Miss Polly had a Dolly and 3 Naughty Monkeys).

I had such a strong sense of pride, community and belonging – and relief!  Today felt a little bit like that. You just don’t know if people will come along and see what you’re up to; you don’t know if they will like it if they do come.  You don’t know – but you take a deep breathe and open the door.

I just wanted to give a big shout out to all you lovely people who have come over to say hello, join up or give encouragement to Channel Mum. Thank you for giving us such a warm welcome.  And thanks to the GuardianThe Drum and Campaign who helped us get the word out.

 

 

Channel Mum’s inaugural Vlog 15 is here!

Today we’ve released the results of the first ever Channel Mum Vlog 15 index, revealing the top 15 mum-focused YouTube creators for the month of December 2014.

We’ve put together a very clever-sounding algorithm that allows us to rate creators against each other across a range of datapoints to give us an engagement and reach score and then a ranking based on a combination of both. We wanted the Vlog 15 to be not just reflective of creators’ scale (subscribers / views) in the way that most YouTube indexes are, but also to factor quality of engagement with content, and also the creator’s social footprint outside of YouTube.

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The much-loved Anna Sacconne managed to cling to her position at the top of the index in both November and December, though in December she was joined at the top by Sprinkle of Chatter‘s Louise Pentland, who achieved the exact same score as Anna. Within the overall 15 there’s a real mix of different interests and specialisms among the vloggers and their content, including grocery hauls, cooking, kids & mum fashion, beauty and money-saving.

December was a busy month for our lovely creators, with many of them participating in Vlogmas, which saw them joining scores of other YouTubers in committing to post every day throughout the month. But despite the number of videos posted by the vloggers increasing by 30 percent between November and December, this didn’t translate into an increased number of views, with the Vlog 15 clocking 3m less views in December vs. the previous month, showing that increased frequency doesn’t necessarily mean more views.

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We’ve looked at average watch-time as a key metric in our index, as we know it’s an important part of the YouTube algorithm that determines which content appears organically on the site. Interestingly there was no correlation between the scale of the vloggers’ community and their watch-time, showing that even newer vloggers or those with smaller communities can command impressive watch-times with the right content.

We’ll be releasing the Channel Mum Vlog 15 in the second week of each month for the month previously. We hope it will become a really useful resource for viewers, advertisers and vloggers themselves to assess the performance of mum-focused YouTube talent.

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If you’re a vlogger or creator and would like to be considered for the Vlog 15, please get in touch at creators@channelmum.com. To be assessed, you must have a minimum of 1000 subscribers and have made at least one piece of mum-focused content during the relevant month.

For anyone else who would like more information or to offer feedback about the Vlog 15, please drop us a note at hello@channelmum.com

The honest face of parenting

My kids don’t google questions anymore, they youtube them. And for a while that’s how I thought it would be. YouTube for kids: Minecraft, makeup and funny cat videos. But the YouTube kids are growing up – and having babies. And the YouTube generation of mums have just as many questions as I did when I was a new mum: how do I get my baby to sleep when they think that day is night and night is day? Can I give Calpol AND Ibuprofen for a fever? Is it normal for my baby to cry this much? But more importantly, am I normal?! Why is this so scary? Does anyone else feel overwhelmed? Am I really good enough to be in charge of this tiny delicate, precious little baby?

Millennial mums deserve answers to these questions and they want it in the intimate, visual format of video blogging: vlogging, where it feels like you’re hearing from friends you can get to know and trust. But if you look for answers on YouTube right now, you’ll probably be met mostly by American ‘moms’ (lovely but just different somehow) or corporate how-to’s.

And so Channel Mum was born.

There are some great Mum vloggers already out here – and we’ll introduce you to them here. But we’re also sponsoring 100 mums to find their vlogging voice and tell us their stories. Could you be one? Channel Mum videos are made with love and from the heart by real mums. It’s not about experts telling you what to do, it’s about the honest face of parenting.

The Channel Mum family is about love, trust, friendship and support.

This short film shows just what we mean by that.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VRF0pKZvirQ&feature=youtu.be

Join us and come along on our journey.