Lydia Sweatt is a writer who loves balancing her article/blog time indoors with a healthy dose of nature. She bikes, hikes, and identifies edible plants along the way.
3 Uncommon Ways to Grow Your YouTube Channel
JUMP TO SECTION:
- 1. Start Your YouTube Channel as a Learner, Not as an Expert
- 2. Try Recording In One Take
- 3. Be the First Person (Literally) to Cover Timely Events
You don’t have to grow your YouTube channel the same way everyone else does. Just ask animation creator JONK. He’s forging a new path on YouTube, one where making unconventional videos results in thousands of new subscribers.
In this episode of TubeTalk, we chat with JONK about how he went from 500 subscribers to more than 30,000 in two weeks. His videos feature “talking stick men” who share their opinion about everything imaginable – company logos, Netflix, scam calls, and more. But it was one video in particular, which we discuss below, that put JONK's channel on the map.
Need some fresh tips to grow your channel? Here’s what JONK did to gain thousands of subscribers in record time.
1. Start Your YouTube Channel as a Learner, Not as an Expert
Plenty of creators join YouTube to share their expertise, but you don’t have to follow the same path. In fact, you can do whatever you want – skydiving, cooking, fashion design, anything. On YouTube, it’s not about being an expert on day one. All you need in the beginning is passion. That’s why exploring your hobbies on YouTube, and simply learning as you go, is golden.
Take JONK, for example. He isn’t an artist by trade, but he loves making animated storytime videos.
“I was known in school as an infamously bad drawer…. If you go back to my first videos, you can tell that the stick men were awful,” JONK says. “The bodies didn’t even line up with the heads.”
One of those early uploads is called “Embarrassing Videos.” It has 250 views, way less than the 4,000 he averages on newer videos.
JONK is getting more views now because he never stopped improving his content. The animations are better, the transitions are seamless, and the storytelling is tight. Just watch his latest video, “Why I Hate Discord,” to see for yourself.
This proves that anyone can grow a YouTube channel from zero subscribers. And you can do it as a learner and not as a seasoned expert in your niche.
2. Try Recording In One Take
This one sounds scary, right? Why would someone shoot a video clip in one take instead of recording a few times to be safe?
In a word, it’s all about productivity. New creators need to make lots of videos before the YouTube algorithm “notices” their channel. Once that happens, YouTube will (hopefully) recommend their videos to more viewers. The odds are better if a creator focuses on quantity though, not quality.
In general, here’s the fastest way to grow a new YouTube channel:
- Create 30 or more videos in your first three months.
- Make videos that are passable, not perfect.
“I speak to creators that write scripts, and some of their scripts can take hours to write,” JONK says. "I feel like if you write a script, and you record the same thing over and over again...it’s just not going to sound like you’re excited about it. So that’s why everything you hear in my videos, whether it’s doing a reaction to a fan or a video, every reaction you see is my first reaction.”
Which would you rather have: four perfect videos or 30 good videos that give you some algorithm juice? If you want the latter, you’ll need to work smart and overlook those initial hiccups.
3. Be the First Person (Literally) to Cover Timely Events
Just a few weeks ago, JONK had 400 subscribers. So what on Earth pushed his channel to 30,000 in just two weeks?
Apparently, it was a spur-of-the-moment decision. JONK made a viral video about rapper and YouTube creator KSI, and that’s when everything changed.
JONK’s video is about The KSI Show, a pay-per-view event chronicling KSI’s life. While watching the hour-long event, JONK decided to make a “stick man” video about the show. It took less than two hours. He made a thumbnail and immediately posted the video below, which has more than 800,000 views.
“I think in the first 10 minutes, it gained about 2,000 views, and I was just saying, ‘What is going on?’” JONK says. "The thing that shocked me was the majority of views, they were coming from YouTube search. So people were 100% searching for The KSI Show.”
Other than that, why did JONK get so many views? Here are two reasons:
- He was the first person to post a video about The KSI Show after the stream ended.
- He knew KSI fans who didn’t watch the event would look for recaps.
Essentially, JONK covered a trending topic before it started trending. Then he amassed nearly 1 million views! If you want to grow your YouTube channel quickly, keep an eye out for events that have the power to trend.