Category Archives: Caribbean Content Creators

Scheduling for content creators

As a content creator, the thing I struggle with the most is time management. I realised this particularly in 2024 when I set concrete goals. Two blog posts per week; Focus on YouTube; Publish 5 YouTube Shorts every week; One podcast episode per week. I set ambitious goals but didn’t have a plan.

As a family man with a full-time job, I know I need a plan. I need structure. Daily habits. Tools to help me organise my process. It’s all new to me and I’m having a hard adjusting to structure and sitting down each morning, writing, recording, and editing videos and podcasts. Stopping to fulfil my paternal duties, and get things done around the house. I’m writing this on Monday 8th January, 2024. It’s exactly 10:00 AM. Do I want to be writing this article? No. I don’t.

So, I’ve gone from being a content creator who approaches things willy-nilly to one who’s seeking structure and trying to build a business, and my brain hurts. You know those headaches you get when you give up sugar and flour? Yeah. I’ve been walking around with that headache for two days. But! I’m getting things done. I want to share the things I’m doing to bring structure to my life as a content creator.

1. I’ve set goals. They’re clear. They’re concrete. Two blog posts per week: One on Monday at 8:00 AM; and one on Thursday at 8:00 AM. One podcast episode. Because these goals are concrete, I will know when I miss them.

2. Prioritise writing. As a YouTuber, I’m tempted to think in terms of video first. In 2024, writing is the priority. These articles become the stepping stone to YouTube Shorts, Podcast episodes and long-form videos. As I write new ideas spring up and I jot them down for later.

3. Task Management Tools. for the last 3 or 4 years I have used Google Keep to write articles and jot down ideas. Google Keep is a note-taking service. I like it because I’m not restricted to writing on a local desktop file. I can access Keep from my phone or desktop. In 2024 as I turned my attention to having a content plan and I had to arrange, prioritise and track tasks, I immediately began feeling the limitations of Keep. I’ve heard about a productivity software and note-taking service called Notion, and I’m looking into it.

In the meantime, to track tasks and their status I’ve used Google Sheets to create two spreadsheets. One is a publishing schedule for articles and podcasts. The other is a publishing schedule for videos. Let’s talk about the fields in the first spreadsheet. There are seven fields: Article name; status; publish by; published on; podcast status; podcast recorded on; podcast edited on; and podcast published on.

This simple change has done a lot for me. Yes, based on how I’ve always done things, it’s a little boring, but I now have one holistic view of my content plan. Colour-coding rows help too. For example, a row highlighted in yellow means the article is written but the corresponding podcast episode hasn’t been recorded. Green means both the article and podcast episode are published.

Timeboxing/Timeblocking. I learned about timeboxing during my undergraduate studies. The concept sounds great, but I hate timeboxing. When I’m working on something that’s all I want to work on until it’s done. Imagine if a video takes days to record and edit, and a blog post and article are due. Problems. Timeboxing involves setting a maximum unit of time for an activity in advance and then completing the activity within that time frame. As much as I hate timeboxing I now use it to batch research, write, edit and record videos and podcast episodes. Every morning I dedicate an hour to writing. There are timeboxes for recording podcasts. Others for recording YouTube Shorts. Timeboxes on Thursdays and Fridays for editing.

I hope you’ve found at least one little gem that makes your life easier as a content creator. If you have any tips on managing your time please feel free to leave a comment.

On becoming a better content creator

Hi, my name is Lyndon Baptiste and today I want to talk to you about becoming a better content creator. I’ve been a writer and YouTuber since 2008, but I should warn you: it’s only in 2024 that I committed to becoming a better content creator. I may not be the ideal guide. These are merely my thoughts, and how I go about things based on my gut and the articles I read. If you glean something, I’d be pleased to hear. You can reach me on Instagram or X @lyndonbaptiste.

Know your audience. If you’re still here, chances are you’re a content creator who likes to read; or, if you despise reading, you’re here because the information is important to you. While your audience probably loves you, ask yourself what are they looking for: Love? Nostalgia? A taste of Trinidad and Tobago? Or Grenada? Are they searching for scenic accommodations on a hillside in St Vincent? Or luxury, all-inclusive hotels?

For me, the first step to becoming a better content creator is setting goals and sticking to them. For far too long I’ve done things willy-nilly. No clear goals. Nothing to aim at. No process. No business plan. No structure. Although I heard successful YouTubers and podcasters preach on the topic. For 2024 my goals are clear. Publish weekly: two blog posts; one podcast episode; at least one YouTube Shorts on weekdays; and one long-form video on Thursdays at 8:00 PM. Find good clients. I’ve set goals.

Create a plan, a creative schedule; stick to it. It involves batch writing, recording, and editing. My goal is a content savings plan. I’m writing this article on Wednesday 3rd January, 2023. By the middle of January, I should have a month or two worth of content saved. To get that done I have to write at least two articles every morning and record a podcast based on the article. Then I’ll settle into a more realistic schedule because, boy, oh, boy, I’m working hard, but I love it! Pressure invigorates me!

Learn something new every day. Know the players in your field. Listen to a relevant podcast. Read 5 pages. Listen to 10 minutes of an audiobook. Read articles.

Write every day. Gosh. I didn’t realise how much I missed writing every day. As I write I generate more ideas. And more ideas. For other articles, videos, podcasts. As I said, it’s the third day in January. Prioritising writing, I’ve written over twenty articles that will become twenty videos and twenty podcasts. As I write ideas come to me. I note these ideas. These ideas will become future episodes. Chances are if I was working on one specific video I wouldn’t have twenty other ideas. Let your writing drive your content creation strategy.

Batch record. Whether it’s videos or podcast episodes batch record. Of course, planning (and writing) enables batch recording. If you’re a YouTuber work on saving up a bank of videos. Commit to one a week. In the background keep creating so you can graduate to two a week then three. Work until you have a bank so big you can show up every day then twice a day.

Choose a video platform and stick to it. In 2023 I was posting everywhere. The metrics looked good and hooked me. As a solo creator, though, I was stretching myself thin. Particularly when it came to audience engagement. After years of experimenting, I feel like YouTube has the tools and audience I’m looking for, and when it comes to video content it’s where I’m going to settle.

Of course, there’s a lot more to becoming a better content creator like knowing your strong points, the software tools you use to manage different aspects and how to price your services. At the time of writing, these are the points that stand out.

In episode 19 of the Caribbean Content Creators podcast, I spoke with Ishmael Baig about pricing for content creators.

Do you celebrate your wins?

I have a really hard time celebrating my wins. I’m a writer and content creator. When I hit milestones I acknowledge them, but not for too long. At the beginning of 2024, I shared my goals in a YouTube Video and episode 36 of the Caribbean Content Creators Podcast. Today I want to celebrate accomplishing one of those goals. A major goal. I have this very ambitious goal that I’ve been walking around with since 2022. The dream is to send a coworker of mine named Farmer Harry to Antigua. If you’re a new reader I’ll just put it into perspective quickly. Farmer Harry lives off the grid in Caura, Trinidad, on a lovely mountainous slope of land that he cultivates with Scotch Bonnet peppers, plantains, ginger and lime trees. It’s fantastic. Look him up on YouTube.

Farmer Harry is 61. In 2023, for the first time, he got his birth paper. Then in late 2024, he got his national identification card. We’re currently working on his passport. In 2022 or 2023 it occured to me that he had never left the island because of not having his passport. I asked him if he could go anywhere in the world where would he visit, and he said Antigua. We set the goal to raise TTD 17,500, which is maybe about 3,500 USD. I put the word out with the hope that I could do sponsored videos and raise the capital to send Farmer Harry to Antigua.

Interestingly, people started donating to Farmer Harry. Some of them anonymously. For transparency reasons, I created a Google spreadsheet that I made available to the public. You can view our progress here.

In 2023 things moved slowly. For Farmer Harry. And for me. I created content, but not content that focussed on Farmer Harry’s trip. In late 2023 when he showed me his identification card, I launched into 2024. Reestablished my goals in a YouTube video and podcast episode. On Sunday, 04 January 2024, someone reached out to me on Instagram. Suzy’s Roti Parlour in New York. Long story short they said they wanted to contribute the outstanding balance to Farmer Harry’s trip to Antigua. Within days they delivered. Amazing.

I’m sharing the story hoping that it inspires you. Sometimes, you’re quietly working in the background, with no support, no applause, thinking that you’re not accomplishing anything. No breakthrough is in sight, and you’re working long, hard hours, feeling like this is going absolutely nowhere. But. You never know who’s paying attention. Keep going. Thanks, Suzy Roti’s Parlour.

Powered by Suzy’s Roti Parlour in New York: ⁠⁠ Directions:

Bar Miztah on how to make music reaction videos on your smartphone

Today we are chatting with Bar Miztah, a Trinidadian YouTuber who creates reaction videos. In the podcast, we dive into his process of creating reaction videos. I was honestly blown away when I learned that he uses his phone. You can listen to the podcast on Spotify. Here are the Key takeaways.

Caribbean Content Creators need to invest in themselves. To be taken seriously on the global stage be professional. Where necessary pay for programs and apps to access more features or, say, have an app’s watermark removed from your videos. Give your best. Look at the competition. Get a better microphone. Up your game.

Love what you do. Be yourself. Before creating a YouTube channel, Bar Miztah stumbled on reaction videos looking for songs. The content creators he looked at would break down bars in the song but he noticed that they would miss things. He pointed this out and his wife suggested that he do it himself. So he did. Everyone has different motivations to create, and that’s fine but you must love what you do.

Experiment. Not knowing anything about creating reaction videos, Bar Miztah experimented a lot and downloaded over 40 apps until he found something he liked. As strange as it sounds to me, Bar Miztah doesn’t like editing his reaction videos on a computer. He discovered that he prefers to use his phone. He discovered LogoPit for making thumbnails. For editing, he uses Kinemaster, the paid version. When it comes to videos, he suggests it’s not only “how the video looks” but “how it’s presented”.

Copyright Claims. Reacting to music videos, he’s gotten his fair share of copyright claims. You can request a review for a revision. In some cases, the claim might be removed. As a content creator be mindful that you don’t create content that gets you blocked from different regions.

Be consistent. A lot of Bar Miztah’s growth came in 2022 by consistently posting videos.

Listen to your community. Commenters guide you and tell you what they want to see. Give them what they want.

A serious joke about marijuana smokers in Trinidad

As a content creator, there’s a lot to consider especially when you’re “pushing boundaries”. Maybe you like dark humour, political satire or touchy subjects, and you’re reluctant to share your content. Trust me. I understand. I’m sitting on jokes that I’m not sure about. Along the way I’ve learned a thing or two from publishing articles and videos on political satire and the state of things in Trinidad and Tobago. I’ll share what I learned. But first: context. Context is key.

In November 2023, I wrote and published a joke about some marijuana users in Trinidad. I didn’t say it was a joke and I didn’t say “some” marijuana users. In the interest of a fast-paced video I cut lines that would have provided context. A mistake? Perhaps. I was willing to take the risk. On Tik Tok and Facebook, some “users”… I don’t know what’s the right word, but some “users” blazed up the comment section.

Marijuana in Trinidad

It’s January 2023. Attacks continue to trickle in. In Trinidad, it’s illegal to smoke marijuana in public places. Despite what you may witness at rivers, beaches and on pavements, it remains illegal. Authorities seem unbothered. Civilians too. At Caura River, I’ve sat next to men and women who’ve casually fired up arthritic-looking joints. Honestly, it doesn’t bother me. And it doesn’t look like it bothers nearby children and drinkers. Which is weird given the dangers of secondhand marijuana smoke to children. I’m not here to expand on those dangers. I’m here to talk about how, as a content creator, I saw an opportunity to write a joke, and create a video, and the lessons I learned from the experience. Here’s the joke.

It feels like everywhere you go in Trinidad you're surrounded by people who have no regard for other people. They're cussing, littering, smoking weed in public. Weed smokers are the worst. They have no regard for secondhand smoke and children. You'd almost think it was legal to smoke weed in public. Recently I went to Caura River with my family. As soon as you come out of the car all you could smell is weed, and curry. There's a part of you that isn't sure if to stay or leave, but you tell yourself you're a law-abiding citizen and you deserve to be there, so you stay. You tell your children to "man up" and you tell your wife to "man up and focus on how the curry smelling."

The following week we went to Clifton Hill Beach in Point Fortin. As soon as you come out the car all you could smell is weed... and KFC. There were teenagers smoking weed; I saw a pregnant woman smoking weed; a man was on the beach flying his kite and smoking weed. Should I leave or should I go? Nah, man, I have a right to be here. So, I sat in the midst of all the cussing and marijuana smoke, and contemplated the future of Trinidad. Then we got up, and I started staggering towards the water with my daughters. Pointed at the sky and said, "Hear this nah, man, I high, you know, like that f'in kite." And the four-year-old looked at me in disbelief and said, "Me too, Daddy."

If you read the joke and watched the video you’ll realise that key parts are missing from the video. And because of subsequent edits parts of the original joke are missing.

Buckle up. I’m going to attempt to take you to a place where a lot of things don’t make sense. Inside my head. The joke is really about how people show little regard for others. Whether they’re a drinker, smoker, marijuana user, or swear willy-nilly in public. In the end, the father curses in front of the child. This is key. The father isn’t smoking marijuana in public but when he curses, he shows no regard to others and his children.

In the interest of keeping the video under one minute, I omitted important lines. Therefore the joke lacked context. In the video, I didn’t say some marijuana smokers. I said marijuana smokers are the worst. It was a blanket attack on “all” marijuana smokers instead of smokers who disregard the law.

Context is key. Without providing context a segment of the audience (particularly on TikTok) misinterpreted and responded negatively. It’s important to frame your content to avoid misunderstandings. Hopefully, I’ve learned.

Understand your audience. As weird as this sounds, different platforms attract different audiences. My YouTube subscribers know and understand me. Tik Tok is the Wild West. Don’t expect your content to have the same impact everywhere.

Consider the consequences. Before you hit publish, consider the consequences. In the same breath don’t let negative comments dissuade you. Learn. Adjust, if required. Publish. Repeat.