How to Grow your YouTube Channel
YouTube is the leading platform for video time viewed globaly, but is one the harder platforms to create content for, manage and grow an audience. So, we’re going to run through and give you some advice on how to grow your YouTube channel.
Many platforms have tried to challenge YouTube in the video platform world. We saw Facebook launch Watch, Instagram launch IGTV and the all video platform TikTok launched. Still, YouTube is still the front runner on the global video viewing stage.
Related Article, Complete Guide: How to be a Streamer?
How to grow your YouTube channel
1. Look after your brand
To grow your YouTube channel make sure your branding looks good, even if it’s a channel under your personal name. Your brand is the first thing a user sees, even before listening or watching your content. If the branding isn’t great, the first impressions of your video might not be the best, leading to an expectation the video content might not be great either. If they’re thinking this even before watching you’re not in a great position.
2. Plan through a content calendar
Creating a content calendar will help you post enough content and do so consistently. This will help your audience’s personal schedules and expectation. If your audience knows when to expect a video, they’ll be on the lookout for it and are more likely to watch. More video views signal to YouTube that your videos deserve more views and will recommend them to more people.
Also, by creating a content calendar you might find yourself planning better content. As an example, you might avoid posting similar content close together. This will give your audience more diverse and interesting things to watch.
This will indirectly help grow your YouTube channel subscribers.
3. Create "evergreen" content
One of the most powerful things about YouTube is that your videos could be searched for and seen for years to come. This means that if you’re creating a video that is as relevant in 5 years time as it is now, you could be reaping those rewards for 5 whole years, and the rest.
Of course, there’s merit to creating up to date content about relevant things happening right now, even if they’re meaningless next month. But make sure you’re still looking to create those evergreen pieces of content to keep your channel evergreen.
This will help you grow your YouTube channel now and in the future.
4. Recycle old content
Don’t think that those great videos you made last year are done and finished, not by a long shot. You can use thee videos to help grow your YouTube channel again and again. If you’ve been posting high-quality content, take another look and recycle some of the better bits into new pieces of content, or repurpose them into evergreen content.
Remember you’re creating videos based on a keyword that a user is searching. This means that a video can be used across different keywords, if you make it relevant to different keywords.
As a very basic example, you have a video of a cat eating food in a funny way. You could create a video for the keyword ‘Cat food’ and another video for ‘Funny cat’. Both could then be found through different searches using idfferent search words.
Of course, make sure you’re recycling and re-editing these videos in a new and different way to the originals or your channel will be very boring.
5. Keep every video on topic
When you’re creating a video make sure that it’s centred around one keyword or phrase.
YouTube is effectively Google for videos, and it works the same way as Google does as well. In oversimplified terms, when a user searches for something, YouTube looks for the best match by using the keywords in the search. If it matches your video, your video will appear in the results.
To grow your YouTube channel, make it as easy as possible for YouTube to identify what your video is about. Make sure your whole video and setup is centred around that particular keyword or phrase.
6. Don't be afraid to go live!
Live streaming is becoming more and more popular. People enjoy being able to engage with a live stream but also enjoy it being genuine content.
It’s an opportunity for you to engage directly with your audience and develop a stronger following through doing this. Also, this content is not edited, it’s live and anything could happen. People enjoy that whatever you’ve said has not been edited and comes across as genuine.
As well as being great for your image, YouTube will serve your live content in a different manner to your usual videos, giving you a better chance of being seen.
7. Share your playlist link
Rather than sharing a link to one of your individual videos, share a video link to a video within one of your playlists. This will allow your viewer to browse through the other videos on your playlist and have the videos automatically play for them once they’ve finished.
When you share an individual video link, users will be shown other external videos as suggested videos for them to watch, taking them away from your channel.
So, keep them watching your videos by offering your own videos the watch next option, not someone else’s. This potential additional viewing all ads up to ‘watch time’, a key metric on YouTube.
8. Share a related video link in the comments
Users are likely going to be scrolling down to the comments section after watchin a video. By placing a related video link as a pinned comment you’re increasing your chances of that person clicking though to watching more of your content.
Also, having an empty comment section is never an appealing situation, even if the only comment is your own. Take this as an opportunity to stir up some engagement.
9. Always set up the fundamentals on your video
Make sure that you’re filling out all the pieces of information that YouTube offers you. Every video on your YouTube channel has different pieces of detail to fill in, and for good reason.
Examples of these fundamentals include:
- Creating a stand out thumbnail.
- Making sure your title, description and tags are related to one keyword or phrase.
- Checking your video has all the internal links you’ve referenced.
- Creating an attractive and engaging end board.
Most of these are given to you in YouTube in order to help you achieve growth, so make sure you’re using and implementing them on every video. They all add up to reach, subscribers and watch time.
10. Grow audiences on other platforms
Although you’re busy creating content for your YouTube channel, it’s very important that you’re still growing an audience elsewhere. The most popular option being social media.
Of course, managing more than one social media account can be tricky, but it’s important for further outreach that you have other outlets you can post and share your YouTube videos on. You’ll need to work out which platform suit you best, platforms such as Twitter, Pinterest and Reddit have historically been effective for YouTube channels.
If you’re an experienced channel looking for further growth and not already on other platforms, this should be your next step. You should also be leveraging your current audience to follow you on other platforms. They will help share your content and boost your engagement numbers, which in turn will turn into new followers, that might join you on YouTube.
YouTube does use Google as an outreach tool and you’ll get traffic from search queries there. But the early stages of growth will still be difficult before your videos get picked up and rank.
Even if it’s minimal, the additional traffic will make a world of difference, especially for new channels.
11. Engage with your community in the comments
The best YouTube channels are grown around communities, and engaging with that community not only gives you a personality but also allows you to bring them back to watch your content. Make sure you’re likeable, and that you don’t come across as spammy or desperate. Be yourself and genuine, you will find your following naturally.
A little tip here is to click the ‘heart’ button on the most engaged comments. This will send the user a notification email. By sending a direct notification it might bring the user back to your video to watch again. It might even nudge them to subscribe this time around because you have directly engaged with them.
12. Look at your analytics, learn and adapt
Regardless of the number of views or subscribers, analysing the analytics will give you an idea of what’s working, and what’s not.
Keeping an eye on drop off points in videos, and what videos are creating subscribers, should be two fundamental watch points. Monitoring these will help you understand how the things you are creating and doing affect your growth.
Make sure that you’re adapting your content around what you learn through your analytics.
If there’s one fact to remember about YouTube, it’s here to stay for a while. If you’re doing it right, the work you put in now will grow into something special over time.