Let me know if this sounds familiar: You created a YouTube channel and you’re super excited about it, but you aren’t quite sure how to get more views or build an audience. Well? While creating videos can be super fun, growing on YouTube can be tough. Trust me, I know! But lucky for you, I’ve learned some helpful growth strategies for YouTubers that will help you explode your YouTube channel in 2020. Are you ready? Let’s break it down into my 5 top tips:
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Create More Engaging Thumbnails
Alright, take a look at your thumbnails. Do you like them or do they need some work? A thumbnail is ridiculously important! A lot of people don’t even read titles when they look for videos, they just look at thumbnails to decide what looks best. If your thumbnail is blurry, dark, or just not appealing, your video will get lost in the mix.
So, how can you make your thumbnail stand out? I personally use Canva to design all of my thumbnails. They already have a bunch of YouTube thumbnail templates designed for you to choose from, which you can check out here. The great thing about Canva is that it’s super easy to learn and you don’t need to be a professional graphic designer to create beautiful, engaging designs.
First, I start off with my main cover image. This can be a screenshot from your video, a collage of shots from your video, or photos that are relevant to the topic of your video. For example, if you’re creating a template for your “Day in The Life” vlog, you could make a collage of 3 shots from your video or maybe some cool Instagram pictures you took that day. Put those in for your main background.
Then I like to add text. I usually like to switch things up and not just copy and paste my title. Try to add text that gets clicks, but don’t be clickbaity. People hate that and you don’t want to build a bad reputation. Maybe write a question that generates curiosity from viewers or write an engaging statement. Just make sure the text is big and bright. You want some contrast from your background photo or else people won’t be able to read the words when the thumbnail is scaled down smaller. Go with bigger, bolder text, nothing too fancy or swirly, and keep it short and sweet.
Here are some of my favorite thumbnails.
Use Keywords in Title & Description
Keywords are absolutely essential for growing on YouTube or any social media platform for that matter! I cannot stress enough how important these are in order for your video to rank high up in search results. Keywords describe the content of your video and are terms that people commonly search for. These can be anything from “blogging” and “baking” to more detailed longer keywords like “how to start blogging in 2020” and “healthy gluten-free dinners”.
My favorite way to find popular keywords is to start typing in a general keyword into the YouTube search bar. Type one word into the search bar and terms will begin to auto-populate below. These terms are the most commonly searched keywords. Write these down or take note of these to use in your video titles and/or description.
Once you have a list of about 4 to 6 keywords, you will want to incorporate these into your description. However, you want to make sure that you weave these keywords into natural-sounding sentences and don’t just stuff them into awkward-sounding phrases.
For example, let’s say your video is about your trip to Spain. Potential keywords could be “Spain travel vlog”, “things to do in Spain”, “fun things to do in Madrid” and “what to pack for a summer vacation”. Your video description could sound something like this:
“In my Spain travel vlog, I’ll show you some fun things to do in Madrid! There are plenty of things to do in Spain, and I had a fantastic trip. In my video, we’ll start from the very beginning where I show you what to pack for a summer vacation and go all the way through my Spain adventures and the plane ride home. Hope you all enjoy it!”
See how I incorporated those keywords but it didn’t sound forced? Just get creative with it and write your description as if it’s a mini blog post. The more keywords you can fit in there, the better. Plus, you want to include keywords as early as possible in your description. When people search for YouTube videos, a small preview of the video description shows up in search results (See photo example below). The keywords they searched will be bolded in your description, so if your video pops up and people see their search term right at the beginning of your description, they will know that your video is exactly what they’re looking for!
If you haven’t been doing this type of keyword research and using them in your titles and descriptions, this is a great way to get more views on your YouTube videos and grow your channel.
Use Pinterest to Promote Your Videos
Ah yes, the secret that no one talks about! Pinterest is an amazing way to grow your YouTube channel and I think it’s one of the best growth strategies for YouTubers. I seriously wish more people knew about this because using Pinterest is how I got my first viral video. When I say viral I mean like that video is nearing 1 million views now. THAT kind of viral ;). Pinterest is no joke when it comes to promoting videos.
What’s that you say? You’ve never used Pinterest? Don’t worry but don’t skip this step. It’s not hard to use! In fact, I learned everything I needed to know from my lovely friend Ell’s Pinterest Course. She is the Pinterest Queen and has 6 million monthly views on Pinterest. This girl knows her stuff and she is the perfect person to learn from. Check out her course here to get started.
If you’ve already used Pinterest and are ready to dive into the “how” check out my post all about creating pins that drive traffic to your videos. Or, if you want video tutorials, workbooks, an ebook, and a ton of tips to get your first viral video from Pinterest, you can check out my online course. I’ve already shown so many creators how to use Pinterest for YouTube and they are so shocked that they hadn’t heard of this method sooner! Click here to learn more about my course and why it’s a must for every YouTuber, no matter what their niche is.
Use TubeBuddy for Tags
TubeBuddy is a fantastic free tool for YouTubers. At first, I was hesitant to use any third-party tool for my YouTube account, but it’s a trusted source for many creators. It’s helped me so much! My favorite thing about TubeBuddy is the Keyword Explorer. It helps you find trending keywords that you should include in the tags of your videos. Let’s dive into that.
When you’re posting your video, there will be a TubeBuddy icon near the “tags” portion of the creator studio screen. You can click the button that says “Keyword Explorer” and a window will pop up.
Start typing in some general keywords related to your video. Once you search a term, a little meter will show the score, showing whether or not that keyword is poor, good, or excellent (see photo example below). This is determined by the search volume (how often that keyword is searched) and the competition (how many other videos use this keyword.) It then calculates a score based on those two factors. So if you choose a keyword such as “baking” it probably won’t perform well because there will be way too much competition. Instead, TubeBuddy suggests some other keywords to try on the right-hand side of the window. Try clicking through some of those to get ideas about better keywords to use.
This is really helpful because then you can pack your tags box full of keywords that will help your videos get discovered. By using more specific keywords, your videos won’t get lost in the billions of other content on YouTube.
If you want to try TubeBuddy, it’s free! Sign up by clicking here.
Create How-To or Tutorial Videos
Finally, my last tip is actually content related. Are you putting time and effort into videos that literally no one is watching? It’s so frustrating, right? Ugh. One of the reasons could be because you aren’t creating videos that people are searching for. I know, it sounds ridiculous, but it makes sense.
No offense, but if nobody on the internet knows you, people won’t be searching for your day in the life vlog. Those videos probably just won’t get found or you might only build a very small audience by the chance someone stumbles upon them. Instead, you want to build a presence by offering something of value to your viewers.
Let’s look at it like this, when you want to figure out how to do something, you Google it, right? While YouTube is a source of entertainment, it’s also a place that a lot of people go to learn something new or find answers to solve a problem. So any sort of “how-to” or tutorial videos usually do really well. People are looking for an answer and if your video is one of the first ones to pop up, they click on it and the problem is solved!
If you really like making vlogs, don’t think that you have to stop! Vlogging can be fun, but it’s not the best way to be discovered. Try to reframe your videos in a different way. Let’s say in your vlog you’re traveling around your city and going to your favorite coffee shop in the morning, taking a hike in the afternoon, and then stopping by your favorite restaurant for dinner with your friends. Instead of making “a day in my life” video, frame it as “The Top 5 Things to do in ____ City” or “My Favorite Things to do in _____”. That way, anyone who is looking to visit your city and find things to do will have your video pop up as a reference! Basically, you just have to market your video differently so it can actually reach viewers.
So if you haven’t even started a channel yet and are trying to figure out what type of content to create, brainstorm ideas based on your skills or hobbies. Is there anything you could teach others? Are you great at baking or crafts? Maybe you love productivity and organization. Perhaps you can play 8 instruments. Maybe you’re about to travel across America in 5 days. Whoever you are, you have something unique that you can share with the internet in a captivating and exciting way.
Now You Have 5 New Strategies!
There you have it, 5 awesome growth strategies for YouTubers to help your channel take off this year. Making a YouTube channel takes work and consistency, but success is achievable for any creator! Here are a few more ways I can help you:
- Are you ready to build a YouTube strategy for success? Check out my free workbook, which provides video ideas and marketing strategies to help you create a solid and successful brand on YouTube.
- If you haven’t even started your YouTube channel, don’t worry! I got you covered. In this free 5-day email course, I’ll get your channel up and running with your first video published in just 5 days. Click here to sign up and start your channel today!
- As I mentioned earlier, I have a full online course to teach you how to skyrocket your video views using Pinterest. Click here to learn more and enroll!