Lydia Sweatt is a writer, bookworm, and bass guitar enthusiast. When she goes outside, a bicycle goes with her.
YouTube Success: 3 Steps to Create Valuable, Highly-Watched Videos
Every creator goes through a period of frustration on YouTube – a phase where their channel just isn’t growing. Popular videos start to underperform. Viewers aren’t subscribing. It’s confusing to the creator because they’re working hard to create vlogs, tutorials, and live streams. But for some reason, viewers aren’t interested.
Getting over this hump takes serious self-reflection. You have to separate yourself from your content and ask, “What am I doing incorrectly?”
Ben Leavitt, a social media strategist and YouTube creator, has a hunch about why some creators fail. Before he crossed 79,000 subscribers, there was a time when his YouTube channel wasn’t growing.
“I think that moment was when I was making vlogs that took a ton of time,” Leavitt says. “I liked them, obviously, because they're my videos. But nobody else did.”
Most creators don’t succeed because of one, pesky oversight. Before you can obsess over thumbnails or video equipment, you need to create a value proposition.
Here's a glossary of everything you need to know:
- Value Propositions: Why Every Creator Needs One
- How to Create a Valuable YouTube Channel
- How to Communicate the Value of Your YouTube Channel
- Making Valuable Videos Is a Learning Process
Value Propositions: Why Every Creator Needs One
A value proposition is a promise you make to viewers. It’s a two-part descriptor that helps people understand the value they’ll receive by viewing your content.
A good value proposition includes:
- An explanation of the topics you cover
- What viewers gain by watching your videos
If your channel isn’t growing, it’s because you haven’t done the things above. You haven’t created content that delivers a clear benefit, whether that’s education, entertainment, or something in between. That’s the simple trick to getting more views. Until you address viewers’ needs, they’ll move on to a channel that satisfies those cravings.
How to Create a Valuable YouTube Channel
It’s easy to create a value proposition when you have a clear goal. But what if you're unsure of the value you bring? How does one offer something useful while figuring out their content?
Don't worry. In three powerful steps, you can create a valuable channel and watch your views skyrocket.
Step 1: Identify Your Niche
If you target every viewer, you’ll appeal to no one. Leavitt says successful creators know exactly who their videos are for.
“A lot of people will say, ‘Oh, you don't need a niche,’” Leavitt says. “But everybody that you see on YouTube, there was some unique reason as to why they were able to grow. And that is their niche. Even if it's an entertainment-based channel, then that's it – they're an entertainer.”
Some people have a skill or passion that can become a niche. Many creators teach those hobbies on YouTube, whether that’s skincare, personal finance, music, or another topic.
If you can't find a niche right away, just experiment. Post videos about stuff you’re interested in and see which topics get the most likes, views, and comments. Those are the signals to pay attention to.
Step 2: Don’t Worry About Being Seen as an Expert
This is an important one. You don’t need to be an expert to make videos about certain topics. If you’re curious about something and can see yourself learning about it for years, explore that niche on YouTube.
“If you're enjoying the process, you're going to do what it takes to figure it out and grow an audience,” Leavitt says. “That will happen with YouTube, as long as you love it. It's not a matter of if, it's when. So then it comes down to, are you willing to put in the time and effort?”
Step 3: Get Unbiased Feedback
Good videos are created through slow and steady improvements. But enhancing your channel by yourself is no easy task. A solo creator needs another person – someone distanced from the situation – to critique their content.
“You should have somebody in your life that you bounce ideas off of, who can give you an unbiased approach,” Leavitt says. “Sometimes that's necessary.”
Those unbiased people can also be your subscribers. Ask them to rate different factors of your content, such as how clear the information is, the structure of your videos, and the audio quality. You can collect responses in a Community Tab poll.
How to Communicate the Value of Your YouTube Channel
So far, we’ve shared two ways to fix a channel that isn’t growing. We’ve talked about making your content more valuable and having a proposition that “sells” your videos to viewers.
But how does this work in action?
Communicating your channel’s value isn’t hard, but you have to do it often – ideally at the beginning of each video. Here’s a hypothetical script that quickly gets the point across:
“Hey, guys! Welcome back to my channel, where I talk about reviving old cars – how to do it, where to find discount parts, and how to sell restored vehicles. In today's video, I’m going to talk about the safety equipment you should update on old cars: seatbelts, airbags, and child lock features.”
And just like that, you’ve introduced your channel and the immediate value of your video. It only takes 15 seconds, which is all you have on a platform as competitive as YouTube.
You can also do this visually. Put your value proposition on your channel banner so people know what to expect. Our vidIQ banner is bright and tells you exactly what we’re about: YouTube education.
Making Valuable Videos Is a Learning Process
No matter what, don’t quit YouTube because your channel isn’t growing. Oftentimes, it’s not your niche that’s unpopular; it’s the way you’re creating within that space. In each video, you have to identify and deliver the value people want.
“It does come back to asking those hard questions, where I'll look at someone's channel and very quickly say, ‘I can tell you exactly why you're not growing,'" Leavitt says. "You're not doing what's necessary to grow. So I think it's very important to be very critical, not of yourself, but of the market at large.”
The right content can take your channel from zero to 1,000 subscribers. Make these four videos to speed up the process.