Carla Marshall is the Head of Content Marketing at vidIQ. She has 10+ years of experience in video marketing, social media management, content marketing, DRM, and SEO. She was previously Editor in Chief at ReelSEO.com, and as a journalist and video marketer, she's covered news stories, creator journeys, and digital-first publishing initiatives across all the major online video platforms. She is YouTube Certified and a judge for the Shorty Awards, as well as the UK, US, Canadian, Global, and EU Search Awards.
13 Ways to Grow Your YouTube Channel Right Now!
A huge number of YouTube creators find themselves at home right now, with perhaps a little more time on their hands as they get to avoid the morning commute, or have their lunchtimes to themselves. If you’re an active creator, you’ll know that most of your time is spent in front of the camera, and then editing the footage into something you’re eager to upload.
And while publishing consistent and engaging content is the key to growing views and subscribers, there are also many things you should be doing to keep your channel in the best possible shape. We’ve put together 13 little tasks you can easily do as part of this housekeeping. Just tackling one a day over the next couple of weeks can have a huge impact on your YouTube channel going forward. We’ll be suggesting the following:
- Fix your YouTube channel page
- Give your YouTube playlists some love
- Complete your ‘About’ section in full
- Update old thumbnails and titles
- Fix info cards and end screens
- Make your best content even better!
- Connect with your audience
- Do a livestream for your community
- Use the YouTube Community Tab
- Use YouTube stories
- Collaborate with other creators
- Invest in yourself as a creator
- Plan out future content
13 Easy Ways to Grow Your YouTube Channel
Just devoting some time each day to the following can really improve the experience for your audience. Just pick one and start today!
#1 Fix Your YouTube Channel Page
Your channel page is the home of your YouTube universe that can often be forgotten and neglected once you start creating content. So it's time to revisit, fix, clean and improve it.
Make sure your channel trailer or the video that auto-plays at the top of the page best reflects what you do on your channel. If you don't have a channel trailer and you're not sure what video to use, pick the one that brings in the most subscribers. Viewers trust you with that content, after all, so you might as well use it.
Next up organize your video shelves so that they continue to educate visitors as quickly as possible as to what you do. For instance, on the vidIQ YouTube channel, we have a ‘New to vidIQ’ shelf that touches on our tools but also includes general YouTube tips and tricks, and gaming advice for creators since we know that content is incredibly valuable for a big portion of our audience.
Our next shelf is devoted to our latest uploads so visitors know that we are still creating content and on a very regular basis.
#2 Give Your YouTube Playlists Some Love
Many creators are great about keeping their playlists updated. But let’s be honest, you may have had really good intentions about keeping your playlists up to date, but have fallen a little behind.
Now's the time to package them all up nicely with neat little bows. Consider whether or not you need 98 videos in a playlist, because let's be honest, who's going to start watching a 98 video playlist. Just find a playlist that only has one or two videos in it and decide whether you're going to add more videos to it or get rid of the playlist.
Remember to write playlist titles as if they were video titles rather than file names. You've got to give a reason for viewers to click on those playlists too.
Read more advice on creating playlists and why you should.
#3 Complete Your ‘About’ Section in Full
Reread and then rewrite your channel’ ‘About’ section. Focus as much as possible on the value the viewer will get from your channel. Make sure to drop in a few keywords to ensure your channel can be found by a user searching for those particular keywords.
Do this as a little test. See how many times you write the word you versus how many times you write I or talk about yourself. Remember, this isn't a dating profile. This is for your viewers, subscribers and community. Here’s the vidIQ about page to give you an example:
#4 Update Old Thumbnails and Video Titles
Now might be a great time to revisit some of your old videos with terrible thumbnails and see if you can make any improvements.
But bear in mind you do have to be a little strategic about this. There is an effort versus reward ratio, but you have to find the balance. Don't just go back to all of your old thumbnails and try to improve them.
Look at the videos you think are still relevant and they have performed well in the analytics, for instance for Watch Time or maybe for audience retention. They may have done well for certain metrics, but they just haven't got the discoverability you think they deserve. For those videos, take a look at the thumbnails and try and improve on them them.
And the same goes for the titles as well. It's also highly likely that you've leveled up your metadata or search engine optimization skills. So take a look at the video descriptions, you can maybe have a look at the tags if you really want to. But again, be selective. Don't try and update everything, tests a couple of videos that you think have a potential to work now, even if you did make them six months, a year, five years ago.
Read more on best practices for YouTube Custom Thumbnails.
#5 Fix Info Cards and End Screens
Also consider your info cards and end screens. You may have launched a video a year ago and it didn't do very well for a couple of months and then all of a sudden, it took off, and turned into evergreen content, which is a huge win!
But what you might have forgotten to do is go back to that video and say, hey, this video is getting a lot of views, maybe I could funnel those viewers into more recent content by using more appropriate info cards and end screens.
#6 Make Your Best YouTube Content Even Better!
Personally speaking I always think it's much more difficult to relight the fire in a existing video on YouTube. And I'm always more forward thinking in creating new content. So - create new content from your old content!
A couple of years ago, we made a video on how to get 1,000 YouTube subscribers and it did pretty well 145,000 views. But since then the landscape has changed and I, personally speaking, feel I am a better educator and creator.
So we remade this video with new advice, better filmmaking techniques and improved SEO. And now this new video, published in February 2020, sits at the top of a search rankings with nearly 100,000 views in just a single month.
We did the same thing in the gaming topic, too. I made a video a while ago about how to start a gaming channel on YouTube, which now has over 800,000 views.
Then Dan, our gaming expert came along and he said, "I can do a better job than that." And I said, yeah, we'll go on then. And he did and it's at the top of the search rankings and will likely get a million views this year.
#7 Reach Out and Connect With Your YouTube Audience
So at the time of writing, we are still deep into the Coronavirus crisis, where there are many people stuck at home and they are turning to YouTube for entertainment, education, and in some cases, communication. This is where you as creators can step in.
Now I know that content takes a long time to create. For me it takes days, for others it takes weeks. For animators it can take months but there are ways you as a creator can create rapid fire content, and directly communicate with your audience every single day.
#8 Do a Livestream for Your Community
One of the best way to do this is through livestreams. If you've built up a community, you can invite all of those people who are stuck at home right now to join you in a livestream. I guarantee that your viewers will appreciate it.
We know this because we do channel audits every single week on the vidIQ YouTube channel (Tuesday 11am PT) and the engagement and enthusiasm is insane.
The aim isn't necessarily for you to gain Watch Time out of these streams, it's for you to give value to your viewers, whether it's through questions and answers, education, or just entertaining them.
There are a lot of people doing this right now, there are yoga instructors, musicians, fitness coaches who now can't go to their clients or go to their place of work and they're turning to YouTube to do that. If you're new to livestreaming, here's our brand new guide that's going to give you all the information you need:
#9 Use The YouTube Community Tab
If you have enough subscribers, as well as livestreams, you'll also have access to some other cool tools that allow you to keep in touch with your community on a regular basis.
The Community Tab is your YouTube social feed, and a place where you can post pictures, gifs and voting polls. You can tease video footage to go behind the scenes, or in our case celebrate our amazing 500,000 subscribers:
Voting polls in particular are a good source of engagement. Everyone loves to cast their ballot even if it is to decide the name of a vidIQ tool. There's also a cool extra bonus with community posts - they reach beyond your subscribers. If you want to know more about how that happens, watch this video. It is scary but fascinating at the same time.
#10 Use YouTube Stories
The next communication tool if you're fortunate enough to have it is YouTube Stories. YouTube Stories are essentially Instagram Stories or TikTok 15 second video clips that you record vertically. You don't create a thumbnail or a title, you simply push them to your YouTube channel, and people can watch them through via mobile YouTube app.
We've been using YouTube Stories to do Q&A. I'll post a clip asking if you've got any questions about your channel, vidIQ or YouTube just post them in the comments, and I will respond with a YouTube Story. They are proven to be very successful and they are generating a lot of subscribers for us as well.
Click here for a tutorial on how to use YouTube Stories.
#11 Collaborate with Other Creators
Another way to communicate is to collaborate. Here I am making a cameo appearance on Dotto Tech to share my thoughts about working from home (catch me around 4:25 seconds in).
Steve Dotto and I helped run a YouTube meetup in Vancouver, so it felt like a natural fit to help him out. It also exposes me to a brand new audience of potentially 274K subscribers.
#12 Invest in yourself
Of course not everything needs to be directly associated with your YouTube channel. If you have the time, you can invest it in your personal development.
For example, you could learn how to use some new equipment such as a camera or a microphone to up your production values. You could go on to YouTube and find out how to better present in front of camera, to build your charisma.
You could, if you really want to, go through all of our vidIQ videos and learn more about how to grow your YouTube channel. Or better yet, start one of our Academy courses! We have a 30 day, 32 video course about how to start your YouTube channel that's useful for even seasoned pros.
Right now economies across the globe are in total chaos. And as a result, people's lives and the way they work are going to fundamentally change. In this current landscape. YouTube provides many of these people with an opportunity, because there are almost no barriers to entry.
A lot of people have a lot of skills, and at the moment, they can't get paid for them. But what they can do is take those skills onto YouTube and create opportunities of their own.
If you haven't started your own YouTube channel yet, or you've already been on YouTube for a period of time and you're not doing anything right now. You may miss out. YouTube was already a competitive space coming into 2020 It isn’t going to get any less crowded anytime soon.
#13 Plan Out Future YouTube Content
Another thing you might want to do is create an ideas board. A lot of creators really do struggle with video ideas in the moment with the time that you have right now, you have the opportunity to build out six months, even potentially years worth of content.
If you do want to learn more about generating YouTube ideas, we have the perfect video here:
Want To Get More Views on YouTube?
If you want to take your YouTube channel to the next level and get more views on YouTube then make sure to download vidIQ. Join over 1 million other users and use vidIQ to help you research YouTube, analyze videos, audit your own channel, and take actionable steps click here to install now!
And if you’re really serious about growing your YouTube views and subscribers, sign up for exclusive access to the vidIQ Academy and learn how to launch a successful YouTube Channel in just 30 days.