YouTube is an excellent channel for building brand exposure and hype for your business. Let’s go over a few ways you should be optimizing your YouTube channel.
1. If you’re not already utilizing YouTube Analytics, do so. You can find a variety of useful information, such as how users are finding your videos, audience demographics, average view length, trends, and how to monetize your channel. Look at your watch time report to see when users are navigating away. YouTube Creator Academy’s training will help you better understand how to take advantage of your analytics. Once you know the places your viewers come from, you can adjust your strategy accordingly. The sources tracked include notifications, subscriptions feed, YouTube recommendations, the home page, Up Next, channel pages, and other.
2. We recommend using the free YouTube audio library for music and sound effects to avoid copyright issues. The library imports new music and sound effects frequently.
3. Video titles and thumbnails drive interest in your videos. If a video is performing poorly, consider changing these. The YouTube algorithm will not penalize you. Poor performance means both a lower click-through-rate, and a lower amount of views. An engaging title and thumbnail are crucial, as these two items determine if the user thinks your video is worth watching.
4. Your content needs to be appealing to your subscribers in order to be shown to them on your feed. Inactive subscribers- users who have not clicked on your videos in a while, probably will not see new videos from you on their home page. The YouTube algorithm shows users videos they’re most likely to watch, not necessarily videos from channels they’ve subscribed to. YouTube tracks the performance of your video when it is shown on the feeds of people YouTube thinks will be interested in viewing. It will not be shown on home pages of users the algorithm thinks won’t want to watch.
5. User behavior dictates that users don’t automatically watch new videos, in fact YouTube will show older videos to users, especially when a topic rises in popularity. New subscribers often go through a channel’s videos to watch content with more views and learn about that channel. If a video isn’t performing well immediately, but becomes relevant later on, it can still attract a bunch of views.
6. Like Google, YouTube shows users the most relevant search results. How does YouTube decide what’s relevant? Relevance and performance determine a video’s ranking. The title, description, and content of the video need to answer the user’s search in order to be considered relevant. Performance relates to how likely a user is to watch relevant videos. Highly performing videos will be the ones users click on instead of the other relevant options. You want your content to both answer a query AND keep the user watching once they’ve clicked it. Do a bit of research before making a title and description for your video, find out what users are searching and what the top results are. This gives you inspiration as to how to write compelling and competitive descriptors for your YouTube video to help rank. YouTube SEO is quite similar to search engine SEO, so many of the points in our SEO Beginner’s Guide will apply to YouTube marketing.
7. When you create new content, you should be utilizing all the tools at your disposal to generate hype. Premieres generate buzz with a shared viewing experience. Users who want to attend the premiere will receive a notification before the video starts and join a group chat of users watching the premiere in real-time.
8. Make sure your YouTube channel is accessible to users. It should be linked to your website at the very least. Promote new content through email marketing, sharing it on other social platforms, and consider YouTube advertising. Embed relevant videos in your blog.
9. Make an introduction video for new users. Create playlists so viewers can easily play content related to the keyword in the playlist title and put secondary or long-tail keywords in the description. Video titles and descriptions should contain the keyword(s) you want to rank for. Make sure to set five to ten Channel keywords as well. Your Channel description should catch the viewers’ attention and demonstrate value from the beginning, as most users only read the first couple lines. Choose your layout thoughtfully- your value proposition and color schemes should be simple and match your brand. Organize your content in a way that makes sense. Publish new content regularly- at a minimum once a week. You can shorten content and spread it out if you need to by centering the content around a theme. Write titles using cliffhangers to encourage users to watch. Consider including your logo on the thumbnails. Make your videos accessible by using captions. Don’t forget to optimize your tags by putting the most essential keywords first.
10. Channels that don’t yet have a large following absolutely must hook their viewers in the first five seconds. A hook will keep people watching until the end. Don’t forget your call-to-action. Use annotations to drive viewers to other videos or your website. Annotations place text and links over your video and allow users to navigate, subscribe, like, or comment.
Whether you’re just starting your YouTube channel or have had one for a while, these ten areas of focus will improve your channel’s success. Our Step-By-Step Guide to Digital Marketing is a great starting point for further marketing strategy tips.
About the author: Sheri Holshouser is a marketing manager based in Dallas, Texas. In her free time, she likes to read science fiction novels and play with her pug Chloe. Learn more about her professional qualifications on LinkedIn.