If there is one premier platform everyone is resorting to these days for instant fame, it has to be YouTube. The social media platform has always been a giant. It occupied the top spot for a long time when it comes to online video streaming platforms.
Even with the advent of fresh sites like Amazon Prime, Netflix and Hotstar, none compare to YouTube when it comes to free video content. No wonder, learning how to grow your YouTube channel organically is a burning desire for everyone starting on it.
A huge variety of people and brands resort to the platform to make it big on social media. Not just individuals and aspiring influencers, YouTube has also been home to some of the biggest production houses, theater groups and art enthusiasts. Brands and businesses have always been enthusiastic about putting up their advertisements on the platform as well.
If you are looking to make a successful online presence, making it big on YouTube is an automatic necessity. Yet, before we go into the depth of how to grow your YouTube channel organically, it is important to understand how these videos gain following and ranking.
How are YouTube videos ranked?
There are a few parameters that are of the utmost importance when it comes to ranking YouTube videos. If you want your videos to stand out on YouTube, then you have to be wary of a few factors.
First comes the video quality. YouTube being a video-content based platform exclusively, you must focus on the quality of the video as well. The use of the right channel keywords and great thumbnails boosts your content’s reach and appreciation. Besides, the number of views, the average watch time of users and other statistics reflect how good or bad your content is performing.
Once you have understood these important factors, it will be easy to put in efforts in the right direction, isn’t it? After all, it is not content alone that can drive you to success on the giant competitive platform YouTube.
Here are fifteen secret ways to grow your YouTube channel organically
Decide your content niche
When working on a YouTube channel, it is very important to restrict oneself to a particular niche. This could be anything from fashion to food, travel to books, health and fitness to motivation. The idea is to dedicate your work to one particular category only.
Why? Is it not more rewarding to work on multiple aspects simultaneously and increase the scope of your audience? Wouldn’t I be getting more views because I am targeting so many types of viewers?
The answer is No. Think of it this way. When you feel a recurring itch in your eyes, it is the ENT doctor you prefer visiting. When you are facing skin-related issues, the first trip you make is to the dermatologist. You don’t go scurrying to the general physician if that’s not the only option.
Similarly, on social media platforms like YouTube, with the number of people creating content about each and everything you can think of, people would like to listen to someone who is a specialist. Someone who talks about everything from the space to politics might not be considered the best person to listen to for fashion advice.
Therefore, decide on a niche for your content based on your strengths, resources and passion. This will help you craft tailored content with ease and uniqueness. Believe it or not, targeted work with a smaller audience pool works better than random content aimed for larger groups.
Conduct a thorough keyword research
Once done deciding on your niche, the next step would be to conduct thorough keyword research. You cannot expect everybody to land up on your profile just like that. Depending on the content of your video, you can pin down a description for it using appropriate keywords.
An easy way to determine what these keywords should be is to use a Google search yourself. Say, you have created a video on “The Ten Best Street Food of XYZ place”. Type this into the search bar and let the results load. As you scroll down the end, you see multiple suggestions under the heading: searches related to “(your searched phrase”. These are the essential keywords you must try to include in your description.
Using such keywords optimizes your content for search engine results. This increases the chances of your video appearing higher up in the search results when users type in their queries. The direct impact is on your content visibility and hence the popularity. this is one of the easiest ways to grow your YouTube channel organically in 2020.
Learn to master the basics
YouTube is not very difficult to handle, but you cannot skip the basics. There are a few thumb rules that you must follow if you want to grow your YouTube channel organically these days. This has a lot to do with channel appearance, information and validation.
The “About” section of your YouTube channel needs to be filled with care. Everything from your channel name to its keywords and location needs to be filled up appropriately. At the same time, do not waste too many words in the section making it lengthy and boring. Crisp and catchy are the trends these days because not everyone can make more impact in less talk.
Next, you should decide on a great channel art, which can be modified or updated from time to time. This is because more people are likely to be impressed first by visuals and later by textual details. You can swiftly add a “Subscribe” link to your channel art links to draw more and more people into your channel subscription.
Lastly, the channel icon is something that tells you apart in an instance. Depending on the level of professionalism you intend to portray in your channel, the channel icon could be your face, a logo or a suitable picture. Personalize the icon according to the vibe you wish to convey.
Focus on your brand value
Remember that the chief aim of creating a YouTube channel is to promote yourself as a brand. Whether you are an individual or an organization, the idea is to project yourself as a unique idea.
This needs to be the focus of your YouTube content as well. All your videos, besides being centered on any facts and experiences according to your niche, must also project your brand in a positive light. Besides, you can also add information about your social media accounts on other platforms here for people to grow more curious and inclined toward your “brand”.
Post content consistently
If you have tried observing any successful accounts on YouTube of late, you must have observed how often they post their content. Many choose to post fortnightly or weekly, while some post multiple times in a week. It is highly suggested that you try to post at least two videos a week to be able to star high on the viewer’s feed.
Besides, someone who is consistent in posting content has a greater chance of gaining followers compared to one who creates huge gaps between posts. YouTube recognizes active channels; hence you need to make sure your activity on the platform is frequent and interesting. It is best to designate a schedule for your uploads, say fixing the days of a week. You may even let your audience know of this schedule so that they are always eager to wait around for your next video. What is of utmost importance is to stick to this schedule no matter what.
Optimization is the key
There is always room for improvement, we have all heard. The same holds for your content if you want your YouTube channel to grow organically. The idea is to never stop researching and modifying your strategy, keywords, content uploads and so on depending on the trends and the audience interception.
Every content upload needs to be tailored to suit the viewers’ tastes and expectations. You can choose to tweak templates a little, modify your narration style, explore new keywords and so on in the process. The idea is to never stop optimizing; your aim should be to stand out in YouTube’s and search engine’s results whenever anything related to your content is looked up.
Put in extra effort to win viewer engagement
Our discussion so far has been about the basics. However, for your YouTube channel to grow organically, the main factor is always “the viewer”. This is the aspect that needs maximum attention and hence an innovative engagement. Therefore, apart from the time you are taking to prepare your content, a handsome amount of time must be dedicated to winning viewer engagement.
How do we do this? There are multiple ways to enhance viewer engagement, such as holding online contests, giveaways and interactive sessions. You could use the end screen of one video to direct viewers to the next one in the series.
You could use the first half of the video to build up around some fact or exciting information, and ask the viewers to wait until that pops up. This not just creates greater engagement, but also has a positive impact on your video’s watch time. As mentioned earlier, this gives a boost to your YouTube rankings.
Focus on creating unique content
No matter how many tricks and hacks you follow, until you have something unique to offer to your viewers, there cannot be any shortcut to success. Therefore, besides hitting all the targets right, you must also try to focus on creating unique content.
Depending on your niche, you could try exploring what kind of content your competitors are comping up with. This can also help you learn what works and what does not. You should be able to create original, creative content, after properly analyzing the strong and weak points of your competitors on the platform to grow your YouTube channel organically.
Whatever your niche is, as long as it is only about narration, there are lesser chances for it to spring to success. It is not like channels that do not portray the narrator visually have not done well on YouTube.
However, the personal touch is the new trend when it comes to social media, especially vlogging. Travel, food, fashion and gadget vloggers are all enthusiastic about appearing in their videos, either regularly or occasionally.
Showing up in your videos adds to the genuineness as well as the softness of the content. People are always interested in watching someone narrate their own experiences or creations. Hence, as long as it does not hamper your motive and niche, you can make it a point to appear in your content videos every once in a while.
You could even choose to appear at the end of the video, during the credits, asking your viewers to like, share and subscribe, as is very commonly done by so many YouTubers these days. It shows your real side to the audience and adds tons to your channel’s individuality.
Well Begun is Half Done
When creating content for YouTube, it is important to realize that the larger majority of the audience will skip your video if they find it boring in the first minute. Therefore, it is extremely important to begin the video well.
One advice would be to create some sort of hook in the first few seconds of the video to keep the viewer engaged for long. This could be in the form of some suspense if you are talking about a story or a place, some interesting fact that you intend to open up about later in the video, or some surprise that you promise to the viewer at the end of the video.
The idea is to keep the viewers hooked to your video longer. adding such an element at the beginning itself ensures your viewers do not skip the post immediately. After all, well begun is half done.
Use end screens well
The end screen is one spot which can be used as judiciously as the first few seconds of the video. You can use this screen to embed links to other videos of your channel, perhaps the next and previous one in the series. Besides, the end screen could also be used to share more information about you or your brand. There could be details about your social media handles on Twitter, Instagram and so on for people to follow you. This helps you to grow not only your YouTube channel but also other social media accounts organically.
Restrict the opening credits
As much as opening credits are important, make sure to not drag it too unnecessarily. It tends to be annoying, especially when people have opened your video link because they found the title interesting. Dragging them for long without arriving at your content will only drive them away.
Use screen templates and thumbnails
How your video’s thumbnail appears or YouTube is itself the “make or break” factor when it comes to viewer’s discretion in picking your video to watch next. Therefore, it is better to devote extra time in planning how you want it to look like and what will attract audiences more. The screen template for your videos could also be crafted especially, as is the practice followed by many vloggers. However, you could restrict these templates for transitions, texts and opening/ending credits rather than using them in the entire stretch of the video.
It is not possible to extensively promote your video on YouTube alone, because people are less likely to spend all their “online time” on YouTube alone. Therefore, your target must be to promote your video on as many social media platforms as possible.
This includes Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp and so on. The more cross-platform promotion you engage yourself in, the more likely it is for your video to reach wider pools of target audiences. For cross-platform promotion, all you need to keep in mind is that you cannot deviate from the expectations of the respective platform.
Therefore, the promotion should be platform-specific. For instance, you could use graphic cards and flyers for Instagram, short trailers for Facebook, and compact posters for WhatsApp. Similarly, you can expand your promotional activity to other professional and entertainment platforms, based on the type of content appreciated on them.
Ask them to subscribe, again and again
There is no need to shy away from asking your viewers directly what you want from them – to like, share and subscribe to your video. They are more likely to do it if you ask them to do it repeatedly, say at the beginning and end of every video. You could also do the same when promoting your content on different platforms.
YouTube has emerged as one of the top platforms for individual and business growth in the online world. With the advent of high-speed internet connectivity at affordable prices in one’s handsets, YouTube has managed to penetrate almost all households, workplaces and other centres of activity.
From toddlers who won’t eat until played a video song, to elders who cannot skip the daily news, people of all age groups have a reason to spend hours on YouTube every day. For someone who is looking to make his presence on YouTube a hit, there are too many competitors to stand out against.
Therefore, one needs to prioritize a few factors that tend to have a “make or break” impact on their content. We have listed some of these for those who want to grow their YouTube channel organically. Let us know if you found these useful and how you have expanded your reach on the global platform.