If you’re a ‘YouTuber’, your YouTube channel is your livelihood and you know why it’s important to improve your YouTube channel. It’s optimized with tags and keywords, backlinks and calls-to-action. Views translate to subscribers and subscribers translate to revenue. These savvy streamers have seemingly mastered a platform which tallies up 6 billion hours of content watched per month!
Meanwhile, for marketers, YouTube remains a resource that has yet to be fully tapped into. Sure, there are the exceptions. Brands like LEGO, for example, boast over 8 million subscribers to their YouTube channel. But you don’t need to be an entertainment giant to build a following unique to your audience.
YouTube’s Influence on Marketers
Since 2016, the number of small and medium-sized businesses advertising on YouTube has doubled; proving that YouTube marketing is more than just a stomping ground for those with power and influence.
In 2019, according to Animoto, videos were the #1 way that consumers discovered a brand that they’d later purchase from; with YouTube supplanting Facebook as the top influencer of consumer behavior. It’s safe to say that video matters. And as the unequivocal leader of video content, YouTube has become a crucial platform for marketers to drive exposure to their products and services.
Why Your Channel Matters
Augmenting your YouTube channel with a better content sounds like the easy fix, but it’s a finer science than that. Since 2017, the amount of channels with 1 million or more subscribers increased by 75%.
Subscribers are the measure in reach that advertisers rely on. So, building a channel that not only gets views, but attracts a returning base will take you a long way on your marketing journey.
We’re not saying you’ll become the LEGO overnight, but following these tips will offer a good start in improving your YouTube channel to make you into a marketing powerhouse.
Keep the Videos Flowing to Improve your YouTube Channel
Every company has a different rate video marketing output. Even if you’re not churning out multiple videos per week, it’s important to keep a lively stream of content on your YouTube channel. Constantly uploading videos, or repurposing older videos, will show users that the channel is active. (We all know how it feels to see an account that hasn’t been updated in a year.)
A steady video flow is important for more than just aesthetic reasons. The ever-important YouTube algorithm takes plenty into account; not least, the frequency of uploads. But more on that later.
Video Thumbnails Matter
The click-ability of a video relies on a two-part equation. Half of that equation is the video thumbnail that you choose.
Each video is made up of thousands of frames. When choosing a thumbnail to represent your story, you want to make sure you choose the one that best captures your story. While some professionals opt to make custom thumbnails to make their video pop, others will choose an action shot that sums up the appeal of the video.
Ask yourself what the goal of your video is. If your video is about an event, thumbnail the action. If your video is interview-based, thumbnail someone engaged in conversation. If your video features a product, thumbnail an enticing image of the product. Choose something that you would want to click on!
Video Titles Matter Too
One of the best ways to bring people to your page and improve your Youtube Channel is by having a catchy title. If you’re really skilled at titling your videos, you’ll strike some synergy between the thumbnail and the title.
A title should definitely tease the viewer; but, it should also offer an accurate description of what they’re about to watch. If you tease the wrong thing, you’re likely to lose your audience. Some of the best video titles are posed questions: How did xzy help me lose weight? Why should everyone travel to Chile alone? The list goes on…
The important thing to remember with wording your title is the inclusion of the keyword. For marketing and SEO purposes this can make the difference of your video attract search results or not. So be sure to include your main keywords in your title (i.e: help lose weight, or travel to Chile).
Make Your Channel Look Good
It’s easy to distinguish the serious YouTube channels from the amateur ones. Presenting a professionally-maintained YouTube channel is paramount when building a loyal subscriber base.
Start with the profile picture. Nothing flashy. A high quality logo will do. From there, you’ll also want a sharp banner image that grabs viewers’ attention, while also featuring links to a website and social media pages. NPR nails this. Completing the ‘about us’ section is also a must. A good channel will open the viewer up to different ways to learn more about your company.
Make Video Playlists
Whether you’re an accounting firm, a news hub, or an animation studio; playlists are necessary to make sure your channel is organized and accessible for your viewers to find what they’re looking for.
On the larger scale, we’ll see channels with vast coverage categorize their content through their playlists. For example, CNN’s featured playlists include: Latest News, Must See Moments, Popular Uploads, US News, Politics, etc.
From a marketing point-of-view, playlists can take a similar outline. Sony, for example, uses their camera channel to highlight their products, giving playlists to certain models, while also featuring playlists with tutorials, tips, and highlights from their cameras. Get creative and above all, use your playlists to file your videos into relevant access points.
Always Have Call to Action
YouTube’s goal is for viewers to stay on YouTube. Your goal should be to direct audiences to more of your content, or your website. In 2019, 51% of consumers spent their time on YouTube. Sure, your videos should be entertaining, but they should also use their visibility to build a relationship with your audience.
Calls to action, or CTAs, can be sprinkled throughout your channel and your videos to invite further engagement from your audience. A well-placed CTA may invite viewers to: subscribe to your channel, watch another video, visit your website, follow on social media, or share or comment on the video.
In an internet landscape where engagement is everything, offering your audience options for further action is a proven way to drive viewers to new places.
Understanding the YouTube Algorithm to improve your channel
The YouTube suggestion algorithm is an ever-changing facet of the site that ever the most experienced YouTubers are still trying to wrap their heads around. Nonetheless, having a basic grasp of it can be valuable to your channel and your content. The basic goal of YouTube’s algorithm is to guide viewers to the right content, and keep them watching and engaging with videos.
What is YouTube Looking For?
The two major streams that it will send your videos off to are search results and recommended content.
While there are countless factors that go into how your video ranks, some key figures that the algorithm is looking at are:
- Time spent watching each video
- How recently the video was uploaded
- Popularity growth rate
- Length of videos (the algorithm favors content between 7 and 15 minutes long)
- Frequency of uploads to your channel
- Engagement (likes, shares, comments)
Using the Algorithm to Improve Your Reach
Packing your channel with robust information and content is an assured way to spark your organic reach. Using what is known about the algorithm, some of the best tricks to improve you reach involve:
- Including translations and transcriptions
- Providing detailed descriptions of your video
- Using captions, tags, and links in your information section
- Creating longer videos that keep viewers’ attention rapt
All things considered, search algorithms are worth paying attention to, as they’re constantly changing by the minute. In the meantime, optimizing your channel can work wonders in positioning your business as more professional and informative than your competitors.
Always Be Improving
As YouTube continues to grow, so should your channel. Besides everything mentioned above, staying up on the latest analytics offered by YouTube can keep your channel one step ahead, and getting better by the day.