Whereas there’s no official quantity from YouTube, there are a reported 113 million lively channels on the platform.
Which may look like a staggering variety of YouTubers to compete with. However the excellent news: YouTube has greater than two billion month-to-month lively customers — so there are lots of subscribers to go round.
The trick is reaching them — after which creating high-quality content material that resonates a lot with them that they hit subscribe. Simpler stated than completed, in fact. However there are many easy techniques you need to use to extend your possibilities of rising on YouTube.
On this article, I’ll share methods (many really useful by profitable YouTubers) that can aid you attain a wider viewers and convert that viewers into YouTube subscribers.
Listed below are 12 methods to get extra subscribers on YouTube.
1. Optimize your channel
Let’s begin with the basics. Even in case you create a stand-out video, viewers who click on over to your channel web page and see gaps and an unprofessional profile will assume twice about subscribing. It’s finest to go away no stone unturned in relation to customizing your YouTube Channel.
There are a number of areas you’ll need to take note of in relation to setting your YouTube Channel up for achievement. You’re capable of tweak this all in YouTube Studio (the software all YouTubers should use to add movies and handle their channels) underneath the Customization tab
I’m going to begin with the Branding part (the second tab) since that is the place you’ll discover the non-negotiables in relation to your channel.
- Your profile image: Use a high-res picture of your face in case you’re a creator or a emblem in case you’re a model.
- Your banner picture: Cowl artwork that can seem atop your channel. YouTube recommends a picture that’s 2048 x 1152 pixels and 6MB or much less.
- Video watermark: This 150 x 150-pixel picture will seem in your movies within the right-hand nook for a period of your selecting. It’s additionally clickable, so customers can subscribe to your channel proper from the video.
Beneath the Fundamental data tab in YouTube Studio, you possibly can edit your YouTube channel title and deal with, however the part I need to give attention to is your description. What you embrace right here could possibly be a deciding issue when a person seems at your channel to determine if they are going to observe you.
Whilst you don’t want to put in writing an essay, you’ll want to embrace:
- Who you’re
- What your channel is about
- A name to motion (CTA) or a motive YouTube customers ought to subscribe
You’ll additionally need to embrace a couple of key search phrases right here — however we’ll unpack that slightly extra underneath quantity three: YouTube search engine optimization.
Beneath the Format tab, you’ll discover two video highlight choices: a channel trailer for individuals who haven’t but subscribed and a featured video for returning subscribers.
Spotlighting a brand new video is a superb thought for individuals who have already subscribed — they’re seemingly revisiting your channel to see what’s new, in any case.
However you need to pay extra consideration to your channel trailer — this could possibly be one other make-or-break issue for viewers considering subscribing. YouTube recommends a fast video that features:
- What you create
- What your viewers can anticipate out of your channel
- Why viewers ought to subscribe
Featured sections, additionally underneath the Format tab, let you customise what viewers see once they have a look at your channel homepage. By default, they’ll see a choice of your newest playlists, most up-to-date uploads, reside streams, and in style movies.
Nonetheless, it’s worthwhile giving them a extra curated expertise to encourage guests to your channel to subscribe. Some YouTubers will create a ‘Begin right here’ playlist to assist new viewers get the lay of the land. Others will put their finest foot ahead by showcasing their hottest movies. It’s value experimenting right here to see if a sure format converts viewers to channel subscribers greater than others.
2. Experiment to seek out your area of interest
In lots of guides to rising on YouTube, you’ll discover pinpointing your area of interest as one of many first items of recommendation. And whereas it is a good start line, I discover it lacks the nuance required for YouTube novices, specifically.
Positive, digging into a selected area of interest will be immensely highly effective for YouTube success. Simply ask Paul O’Malley, who hit the nail on the pinnacle proper from the get-go along with his movies on fast suggestions to enhance effectivity, rising to 30K YouTube subscribers in just six months.
Paul is likely one of the fortunate ones — not all YouTube novices may have the posh of a) having a crystal-clear content material area of interest and b) discovering it resonates along with your audience simply as it’s.
YouTuber Ali Abdaal has a great analogy for this. On the subject of discovering your area of interest, you’ll seemingly fall into considered one of two classes, he says:
- Architect: Has a completely fleshed-out area of interest and video advertising and marketing technique deliberate upfront.
- Archaeologist: Experiments with completely different concepts and subjects till they discover one value digging into (actually).
Whereas being an architect may sound preferable, it’s not likely life like in case you’re new to YouTube, says Ali, a instruments and productiveness YouTuber.
“By exploring sufficient sizzling zones, similar to an archaeologist, you’ll hold digging till, ‘Oh, howdy, there’s one thing right here!’” Ali explains.
Ali places himself firmly on this class — he began out on YouTube sharing clips of him taking part in guitar and singing, then snippets of his life as a Cambridge medical pupil, till lastly discovering a distinct segment value excavating: research suggestions for busy college students. This led him to his present area of interest — and greater than 5 million subscribers.
There’s one other vital lesson right here in relation to niches: don’t be afraid to pivot. YouTuber Aprilynne Alter bought her begin in an analogous technique to Ali. After kicking off her channel with a extra common assortment of movies, she finally shared one on NFTs, which blew up — so she leaned in.
“Immediately, I needed to determine: Do I experience this NFT wave or follow my unique, extra common content material?” the YouTube creator beforehand informed Buffer. Experience the wave she did, and it despatched her video content material skyrocketing. Her beforehand slow-growing generalist channel grew to greater than 20K subscribers in a couple of months.
The issue? It wasn’t sustainable. “The factor about niching down is that it is a double-edged sword. On the one hand, it helps you develop shortly. YouTube’s algorithm loves it when it might simply categorize your viewers. However on the flip aspect, in case you’re not captivated with that area of interest, you are setting your self up for burnout. That is what occurred to me with NFTs. I used to be creating the sort of content material I did not care about simply to experience the recognition wave. Six months in, I could not stand the sight of the phrase ‘NFT.’”
Aprilynne took a break from YouTube to reassess her pursuits and expertise, and he or she realized she cherished the method of constructing YouTube movies and was good at it, so she turned her efforts to the “Methods to YouTube” area of interest.
Inside 9 months, April had surpassed her previous channel subscriber depend, with 35K new subscribers and counting.
3. Faucet into YouTube search engine optimization
Consider YouTube as a large video search engine that works very similar to its father or mother platform, Google.
To get your content material as excessive up in YouTube search rankings as potential, you need to give YouTube as a lot useful info as potential: which means utilizing search engine marketing (search engine optimization) key phrases in 4 areas:
- Your channel description
- Video title
- Video description
- The title of your video file
You’ll need to establish a goal or main key phrase for particular movies — embrace that within the video file title, title, and outline — then secondary key phrases inside your description.
On the subject of discovering the appropriate key phrases to incorporate, loads of SEO tools will aid you uncover the appropriate phrases in your key phrase analysis. Free instruments like Google Trends and Answer the Public might help you pinpoint what persons are trying to find and the way.
Nonetheless, the only methodology right here could possibly be to place your self in searchers’ footwear. What particular questions will your channel and video reply for them? What particular phrases are the obvious to seek for, the place your content material is the reply?
The significance of video thumbnails on YouTube can’t be overstated. Your content material could possibly be probably the most helpful, humorous, mind-blowing video ever created, and if the thumbnail just isn’t attractive, you’ll get… crickets.
Ali Abdaal plans his customized thumbnail earlier than creating the video, he revealed. If he can’t provide you with an attention grabbing thumbnail thought, he gained’t even make the video.
Finest search engine optimization Firms performed a fascinating analysis evaluating the thumbnails of the 740 hottest movies of 2020 to pinpoint what components may improve views. Whereas this research may be barely dated, I nonetheless see these techniques used among the many hottest YouTubers.
Right here’s what they discovered:
- Faces: 72 p.c of the most well-liked movies featured a human (these with a face averaged 921,000 extra views than these with out).
- Branding: Movies with a emblem or model throughout the thumbnail averaged 1.2 million extra views than these with out.
- Textual content: 70 p.c of thumbnails of the most well-liked movies included a title or explanatory textual content someplace on the picture.
- Emotion: Content material conveying disappointment had the best common view depend (2.3 million), in comparison with pleasure and humor (1.5 million) or anger and concern (818,000).
- Vibrancy: 88 p.c of thumbnails from the most well-liked movies had been colourful and averaged extra views than movies with extra muted colours.
Listed below are some YouTube thumbnail examples from some very completely different YouTube channels to encourage you. Discover how they tick the entire containers above.
The best dimension for YouTube video thumbnails is 1280 pixels by 720 pixels, with a side ratio of 16:9.
5. Leap proper into the content material
“Hi there, my title is X, and I reside in Y, and on this video, I’m going to…”
Three seconds in, and also you’ve already misplaced them. Gone are the times of prolonged, chatty video intros by which you’re capable of actually contextualize and justify every thing earlier than you get into the meat of your content material.
With the skyrocketing recognition of short-form video (thanks, TikTok), the place there’s simply no time for scene-setting, viewers are used to getting their worth proper upfront.
Whereas YouTube permits for longer-form movies, you may assume that attending to the purpose quick just isn’t as vital, however I’d argue that it’s much more so. The truth is, watch time is a vital metric in relation to the YouTube algorithm. If viewers drop off your video inside a couple of seconds, this sends a robust message to the rating system that the content material just isn’t value watching.
YouTuber Dr. Izzy Saeley calls the primary 30 seconds of the video “the hook,” score its significance second to solely the thumbnail and title. “That is the place you want to present the viewer that the video they’ve clicked on is definitely the video they need to watch. It both has the worth, or the leisure, or the curiosity upfront.”
Izzy’s method is to create what she calls a “curiosity hole” with the video title, thumbnail, and hook. “It raises some sort of query within the viewer’s thoughts, and so they’re like, ‘Oh, I’m wondering what the reply to that’s.’” The remainder of your video, in fact, ought to ship the reply.
Right here’s an awesome instance of hers:
MrBeast, the most-followed YouTuber on the planet with an eyewatering 235 million subscribers, often prefers to leap straight into the motion. This clip, which begins with speedy drone footage of him standing on the shores of a $250 million non-public island, full with a Ferris wheel, curler coasters, and sizzling air balloons within the background, is the right instance:
After all, we don’t all have a military of drones and personal islands at our disposal. One other tried-and-tested tactic right here could possibly be to begin your clip with a high-value or humorous second that occurs proper in the course of your clip. Dude Perfect’s channel options loads of examples of the latter.
For finest outcomes, share a peek of that key second, then minimize to a to-the-point video intro.
6. Get inventive along with your edits
Irrespective of how fascinating or humorous your content material is, nobody needs to look at a speaking head for ten minutes. However how do you retain your customers engaged in long-form movies once they’re used to the fast-paced scroll of TkTok? Enter: sample interrupts.
Sample interrupts are a way in neuro-linguistic programming for breaking an individual’s habits or state. The time period is usually utilized in gross sales and advertising and marketing — and now, YouTube content material creation — to consult with an surprising motion that shocks an viewers out of autopilot.
Don’t let this intimidate you. Loopy Casey Neistat-style soar cuts are removed from the one approach to do that (although his movies are an awesome, albeit excessive, instance of this.)
All this method requires is a few attention-grabbing visible components to maintain your viewers entertained as they take up your content material. B-roll (behind-the-scenes footage) or stock photos and movies work nice right here. You might additionally use transitions, animations, stickers, or typography to an analogous impact. No matter you utilize, don’t overlook to ensure you squeeze in a few of these attention-grabbing visible moments throughout the first 30 seconds, too.
Izzy’s movies are sensible examples of refined sample interrupts and intelligent edits (and easy methods to front-load them in that all-important hook).
Let’s relook at the example above. From the one-second mark, typography flashes within the body to emphasise what Izzy’s saying. Three seconds later, her voiceover continues over B-roll footage of Izzy typing at her laptop computer, figuring out, and scrolling on her telephone in mattress. After that, she provides typography and zooms in on her face barely to punctuate her level. All these transitions are ushered in with unobtrusive sound results.
She eases off the edits barely as she will get into the video, however they happen each couple of seconds, making her video — which is sort of completely of her speaking to the digicam — thrilling and visually participating.
7. Begin a collection
Give your viewers a motive to maintain coming again. As a substitute of loading all of your worth right into a single, lengthy video, why not break the content material into shorter chunks you possibly can flip right into a collection?
Alternatively, in case you discover one thing your audience loves and needs extra of, construct that out right into a collection. There are few higher examples of this than Adriene Mishler’s Yoga with Adriene channel.
She hit the nail on the pinnacle by releasing follow-along yoga flows of various lengths in 2012 however took this to an entire new stage along with her 30-day journeys. As a substitute of one-off, standalone movies (which she nonetheless creates), she devotes most of her time to creating lessons that drop on the similar time each day for a month. In January 2024, she began a collection known as Flow — and the primary class within the collection already has 1.5 million views.
8. Lean into Shorts
Now averaging a whopping 70 billion views per day, creators can be remiss to disregard the rising energy of YouTube Shorts. The portrait-style clips are a most of 60 seconds, and YouTube’s reply to TikTok and Instagram Reels.
Some YouTube Shorts Creators bought their begin with short-form clips and graduated to creating longer movies, whereas others have caught to creating one-minute content material completely. (It’s proved an awesome path to monetization through YouTube’s Partner Program, too).
With a YouTube Shorts Feed devoted to the clips that work quite a bit like TikTok’s For You Page (FYP) or Instagram’s Explore page, Shorts will be a good way for brand new subscribers to find your content material.
If long-form movies are your consolation zone and also you’re unsure the place to begin with Shorts, the best choice could possibly be to easily chop up key moments out of your longer movies. Right here’s an awesome instance of how The Sorry Girls repurposed this 28-minute video of a front room makeover yielded into six completely different Shorts (with a mixed 340K views).
Nonetheless stumped? Try these 15+ YouTube Shorts Ideas For Your Next Video
9. Create a content material system
In case you’re critical about rising your YouTube channel, you want to assume in techniques, Ali Abdaal advises. “As a substitute of pondering, ‘What video can I make immediately?’, ‘What video can I make tomorrow?’ assume, ‘What’s the system I can construct that may make the method of constructing each subsequent video approach simpler than it at present is?’”
Ali has a content material library in Notion the place he tracks the standing of every video, thumbnail, title concepts, and extra. Methods like this turn out to be more and more vital in case you’re selling your YouTube content material on different social media platforms, too.
At Buffer, our content material workforce makes use of a content material calendar system to comparable impact for all our social media channels, together with YouTube. Right here’s a have a look at our exact content calendar (+ a template) and a radical information to constructing a content calendar from scratch.
Partaking and interacting meaningfully along with your viewers is now table-stakes recommendation for social media progress, however no much less vital for it. Give it some thought: what higher technique to hold customers coming again to and supporting your content material than constructing genuine relationships with them?
YouTube actively encourages creators to do that in the event that they’re trying to develop. “The extra you interact along with your viewers, the extra they will interact with you. Speaking to viewers and responding to their suggestions is essential to rising your channel.”
That is finest completed by responding to and hearting as many feedback as potential in your movies (simply managed by means of YouTube Studio’s Feedback tab).
On their Creators Channel, YouTube partnered with creators Colin and Samir to get recommendations on how YouTubers can construct neighborhood on the platform with a couple of different techniques. Their steering was easy however efficient:
Screenshot person feedback and use them in movies
“We plan for the feedback even once we’re writing our scripts and developing with the concepts for our movies,” Colin says. This can be a nice technique to tackle questions straight out of your viewers or simply present your channel subscribers your appreciation.
Gaming creator Fantayzia is one other YouTuber who makes use of this tactic efficiently — she features a fan shoutout from a latest video in all her newest content material, providing her viewers a second within the highlight the place she talks to them straight.
Begin conversations inside your movies
YouTube isn’t just a dialog between you and your viewers, it’s a dialog between your viewers, Samir says. “Once we add a video, we see it as opening the doorways to a conference corridor,” he provides.
For this reason, in a lot of their content material, you’ll discover inquiries to immediate the viewers to share their opinions and begin discussions within the feedback part. “It provides the chance for our viewers to show right into a self-sustaining neighborhood,” Samir says.
Feedback sections will be tough to average, particularly as your channel grows. For this reason Colin and Samir have taken to pinning a considerate remark from a viewer to the highest of a few of their movies, to provide future commenters a sign of what sort of feedback are anticipated.
11. Look past views and subscribers
Whereas the video views and subscriber depend may really feel just like the be-all and end-all, they’re not the entire story. YouTube Studio’s Analytics tab provides a wealth of metrics to let you know how nicely your content material is performing past complete video views and variety of subscribers.
Throughout the Overview part, you’ll get a birds-eye view of how your movies are performing over a latest interval in comparison with the earlier one.
Beneath Content material, you’ll get a better have a look at how your common movies, Shorts, and Lives are performing. Right here, you’ll discover fascinating metrics like:
- Key moments for viewers retention in your movies
- The place customers uncover your movies or Shorts
- At what level within the video the bulk dropped off
Viewers is especially useful. It offers you a have a look at what number of returning viewers you have got, plus the precise movies which are serving to to develop your channel (actually helpful in case you’re caught on quantity two on this listing).
Whereas all of the numbers are thrilling, they are often overwhelming: give attention to making adjustments primarily based on one or two metrics at a time and monitoring their success.
12. Keep it up!
Don’t anticipate stellar outcomes proper out of the gate.
It doesn’t matter what stage your content material creation expertise are at whenever you first begin your YouTube Channel, you possibly can anticipate the primary few movies to flop — which, Ali Abdaal, says in this great video, is enormously liberating.
“You don’t must overthink it. Nobody goes to look at the primary a number of movies anyway. It’s a must to begin off by being unhealthy, and over time, by being unhealthy repeatedly, you’ll finally be good at making movies,” he says.
“Your movies will begin to add worth, you’ll begin to determine what your area of interest is… your channel will develop, after which sooner or later, you can be a millionaire after which life will likely be all nice.”
A very optimistic outlook, maybe, however I’ll go away you with that.