Vincent Chan is a popular Asian-American YouTube creator who regularly publishes financial literacy videos often laced with dry humor. His consultation program, Creator Business Accelerator (CBA), offers one-to-one training on becoming a thought leader in your industry, creating an educational YouTube channel, and earning money online through paid ads and brand collaborations.
Vincent also provides a free financial newsletter, “Daily Market Briefs” which gives you daily insights into the US stock market and other financial news. Having signed up for a while, I can say that the curated newsletter is well thought out and informative. It appeals to people interested in finance overall and is unsuitable for those more interested in more general news.
This Vincent Chan review will focus on my misgivings about his business opportunity. Becoming a successful YouTube creator requires far more than just being intelligent or knowledgeable about your specific subject; you also have to be charismatic and able to get your message across in short bursts. You can check out my best YouTube channels for entrepreneurs to learn more about how to build your differentiating factor.
It works for Vincent Chan, who despite his self-deprecation, is actually quite interesting and fun to listen to. Unlike other business models, becoming a YouTube content creator requires you to regularly release videos and think of something interesting to say.
In my experience, local lead generation hits the sweet spot in e-commerce opportunities - easy enough to start with little experience but challenging enough to limit competition.
Vincent Chan is his own success story and teaches you the exact strategies he used
Offers one-on-one coaching
Publishes Informative, well-edited videos
Business model is not applicable to everyone
Nothing offered beyond coaching
3 unpopular opinions about YouTube content creation (+ what Vincent doesn’t tell you)
1. You need to be the Jack of all trades
Once you become a YouTube content creator, you need to become the Jack of all trades. Being a creator means writing your content out beforehand, filming it, editing it, uploading it, and then writing the right meta descriptions and SEO keywords to get your videos seen. You don’t have to learn everything all at once, but it IS a process that takes months to learn. You are constantly adapting and need to evolve your style to make what the client wants or needs.
This is something that Vincent doesn’t tell you. In his CBA program, his goal is to help you build your educational YouTube channel - but what happens before, during, or after that? Even the best teachers are not skilled in every single facet of YouTube at the beginning.
2. It’s an active business
Anyone who reads my blog knows that I believe in creating as many passive income opportunities as possible. Passive income businesses give you the time freedom conditions to spend time with your loved ones or by yourself if you want to. It’s the choice that separates happy and successful entrepreneurs from those who earn a lot but are burnt out each day.
Needless to say, becoming a YouTube creator is not a passive business, at least not in the beginning. If you reach mega-superstar status such as PewDiePie or Shane Dawson, it is entirely possible for you to receive thousands of dollars a month only pushing out 1-2 videos a week.
Starting out, however, is less simple and you may need to have other sources of income to augment your finances while building up your YouTube audience and ratings.
3. You need to be different
To be clear, any successful business needs to differ from its peers. However, YouTube content creation places much more value on this than other business models. You need to be different, interesting, or in some way, appealing to your audience so that you can attract subscribers - and keep them.
It also requires you to be on screen (most likely). Sure, there are apps now that offer narration or you can go for completely silent videos, but these significantly reduce your chances for success, as most people prefer looking AND hearing something interesting.
Take note that a successful YouTube creator also answers questions from their audience.
Keep in mind as well that YouTube guidelines are constantly changing. In terms of building an educational channel, you need to be aware of copyright laws (especially for music) to avoid getting your channel struck, paying legal fees, or becoming demonetized.
Becoming a successful content creator is not as easy as what is portrayed in popular media
These days, anyone with a smartphone can claim to be a content creator - and in a way, they’re correct. Creating “content” is as easy as pressing a button on your phone to start recording an interesting video or taking a great photo. But what differentiates your content from the rest?
Recent studies show that the average attention span for most people is 8.25 seconds, with scientists even suggesting that this will lessen in the coming years as social media platforms such as TikTok promote incredibly short content.
To be successful in today’s world, you need to take care to deliver great content in bursts. This means that you should be able to condense your knowledge (or skill) in short-form content.
Why create content on YouTube?
YouTube is the second most-used search engine after Google. The platform receives 14.3 BILLION visits per month, which are more than Facebook, Wikipedia, Amazon, and Instagram. It’s safe to say that building your platform here already connects you with a lot of potential customers - you just need to know how to reach them.
According to Vincent, the biggest differentiating factor in creating unique content is yourself. YOU have unique experiences, knowledge, and insight that help you stand out from the crowd. Combined with the fact that creating a YouTube video is as simple as knowing how to use your phone, your goal then becomes creating interesting videos that talk about whatever it is you’re good at.
Vincent Chan’s YouTube success story: From Wall Street to main street
Vincent is a second-generation immigrant whose parents moved to the United States from Hong Kong in search of greener pastures. Having been raised in loving but poor conditions, Vincent saw his parents struggle every day for money and promised himself that one day, he would be successful and take care of them instead by being their provider.
His diagnosis? He set a goal of reaching $100,000 as treatment for his condition. To him, that seemed like such an impossible number, but he studied hard and was accepted into Vanderbilt University, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Economics with a minor in Corporate Strategy. Eventually, he landed an enviable job on Wall Street after passing a difficult exam, and finally reached his goal of having a net worth of $100,000.
What happens after you reach your dream?
Then, Vincent plateaued. Despite the high-paying job, and feeling like he was helping his parents, Vincent felt unfulfilled in his job.
He wanted something else but didn't want to seem ungrateful to his parents, who sacrificed so much for his education. After explaining his troubles to his parents, they surprised him by saying that he should quit if he wanted to - his happiness was worth more than a good salary and a “title” at a company.
Vincent then began creating financial literacy videos on YouTube, which he presented in short 10-minute procedure videos. He would talk about anything and everything about finance, from basic investment advice to applying to have your company keep its all rights reserved to why NFTs may cause challenges in the future. His dry humor, combined with his understanding of the younger generation’s affinity for memes, made his videos fun and easy to watch.
This started a remarkable YouTube career, where he broke the 100,000-subscriber mark in just 17 months - something that most creators only achieve after years of work.
YouTube ads + brand partnerships = Big money
Vincent didn’t rely solely on YouTube ads to earn money. He began actively and passively looking for brands or an investor that wanted to partner with him to start his own affiliate marketing business. Vincent would incorporate these brands into the video (often including his Mr. Potato lamp to add some comedy aspect to it) and include his affiliate link in the description.
He would also link to his free financial newsletter, “Daily Market Briefs” and his CBA program.
What does Vincent Chan teach you?
In his CBA procedure, Vincent Chan helps you create your own educational YouTube channel by maximizing your own skills and knowledge. This is somewhat similar to the course offered by Graham Stefan.
Similar to his experience, becoming a YouTube content creator can be a successful business and reach out to more people. If you’re feeling unfulfilled in your 9-to-5 job or have always wanted to teach people, then YouTube can be a viable option for you.
It’s a great business model, but…
To have an educational YouTube channel, you need to have something to teach. This doesn’t negate younger people, as many teenagers or young adults do have something valuable to offer the world, however, it may be more difficult compared to someone who has had 10, 20, or 30 years of personal experience in a specific field.
Remember that a successful YouTube channel should be active, meaning that you should take care to release at least 1 video per week. You need to have something to say or be able to transform your content into something “different” every time.
YouTube subscribers are also pickier so you need to always maintain optimum viewer conditions. If you don’t keep their attention or maintain their expectations, it’s entirely possible for you to lose viewers.
What is affiliate marketing and how does it work?
Affiliate marketing is a business model that allows you to earn a commission by generating traffic to a third-party company. You’re basically the middle-man provider, and people who know and trust you, are encouraged to check out this product or service because you recommended it to them.
It’s one of the easiest businesses to get into, as you don’t need any initial capital or skills to get started. In Vincent’s model, you will use your YouTube channel as the “home base” for all your affiliate marketing links.
Of course, its greatest strength is also its greatest weakness. Because it's so easy to get in, it's also so easy to fall out of favor with your sponsor. As an affiliate marketer, you have no say about the projection of the product or service you're promoting. If, for example, your sponsor suddenly pulls out or refuses to improve it (in case it needs to), you cannot do anything about that.
Affiliate marketing is also entirely commissioned-based. This means that you only earn if people click on the link you've place in your video.
Is affiliate marketing a scam?
Affiliate marketing is often confused with a pyramid scheme but they are two completely different businesses. In affiliate marketing, you do not need to get people to sign in under you, and it is completely possible for you to earn money all on your own and be your own provider.
Is affiliate marketing on YouTube easy?
It depends. YouTube has a massive consumer base, so starting your own channel there already places you at an advantage because you have so many potential customers. Nevertheless, you need to build trust and credibility among your viewers to get people to click on your affiliate link.
Take note of the difference between affiliate marketing and AdSense as well. To earn on YouTube using Vincent's model, you need to be familiar with both.
Why Vincent Chan’s YouTube channel works
Vincent talks about money but in a simple and non-condescending way that reminds you of speaking with your favorite cousin or uncle, who is also a math nerd. Vincent also edits his videos, so the focus is not always on just his face, but would regularly jump to popular memes, videos, or close-ups to emphasize his point.
Also, as mentioned earlier, Vincent’s videos are usually quite short, ranging from 10 to 20 minutes.
I should also clarify that Vincent does a lot of interlinking between his social media sites. His Instagram page links back to his YouTube page and vice versa. Even his main website, where you can subscribe to his free newsletter or enroll in CBA, lists his social media pages. This way, you always know where to find him and don't need to set an appointment or anything as complicated as that.
Some Frequently Asked Questions
Vincent’s YouTube videos are filled with a lot of positive comments. This can mean one of two things: either he is organically receiving all positive reviews, or he’s been deleting negative comments before I can find them.
Personally, I enjoy his videos and find them to be informative, despite my qualms about his other business, Creator Business Accelerator.
Aside from regularly posting videos on YouTube and Instagram, Vincent also releases a financial literacy newsletter.
Vincent Chan lives in New York. He was born and raised there as well.
Vincent graduated from Francis Lewis High School in 2013. Assuming he was 18 at that time, he would be 27 in 2022.
Vincent Chan has an old Quora account, where he was posting food reviews. This may have been his early attempts at becoming a thought leader or content creator.
Currently, Vincent does not offer an online course on financial literacy or content creation. You can easily subscribe to his YouTube channel though for free to learn more about investments and other relevant financial news.
Considering it’s free and doesn’t require you to do anything, I’d recommend it. It’s a curated newsletter of the day’s financial stories and it’s great if you’re into this.
I am holding out on my misgivings that Vincent is secretly collecting people’s emails for some sort of future scam/email marketing thing, but so far, it seems safe.
Is Vincent Chan legit?
Yes. Vincent Chan is a legitimate financial literacy coach and YouTube creator. His CBA program offers you one-on-one coaching that holds regular accountability checks on starting your own YouTube channel.
CONCLUSION: Should you listen to Vincent Chan or enroll in his CBA coaching?
Vincent Chan is legitimate and seems genuinely interested in helping other people achieve the same success as he did. While I still believe that YouTube content creation is not for everybody, I recognize that this business model can be successful, as long as you put in a lot of effort and time into it.
My preferred business model, though, remains to be local lead generation. In this business model, you earn passive income without having to worry about being on camera each week or finding a new, interesting topic to talk about.