Last year’s highest earning YouTube star was Felix Kjellberg, more famously known as PewDiePie. It’s pretty incredible – he has more than 50 million subscribers, and earned $15 million dollars last year.
Creating a hugely successful YouTube channel is not an easy task. Even semi-successful YouTube partners with thousands of subscribers usually only make a few hundred bucks from ads (though the value of having a popular channel isn't always in the video ads).
There is no set formula for a successful YouTube channel – people become popular for a wide variety of reasons. There is a bit of a shortcut, however – did you know you can speed up that process by purchasing views, subscribers, and other social signals? Just check out our list of top Youtube views providers, and you’ll be in good hands.
Even if you buy views, you’ll still need to put out some solid videos that will attract an audience organically, and make you interesting enough to keep people subscribed. To do that, just take a look at the following tips we've collected to make your YouTube success all the more likely.
8 Tips for Crafting a Kickass YouTube Channel
1. Start with Your Audience
Your content needs to be created for a specific audience – the people you want to target because they’re most likely to become customers.
You can start with determining your buyer personas (sometimes referred to as marketing personas), which are generalized (and sometimes specific) representations of your ideal customers – in this case, ideal viewers.
Having some buyer personas to work with will help you understand your customers better. They’ll help you tailor your content and messaging, showing you how to address the specific needs, behaviors and wants of your audience.
Say, for example, that you’re a life coach with business-oriented training courses. Your target audience could be business owners and marketers. You can even narrow it more to beginner marketers, expert marketers, or marketers in North America.
Strong buyer personas are based on market research as well as interviews and surveys. Just ask the right questions of the right people, and you’ll be able to craft content that’s suited for them.
2. Brand Yourself and Be Consistent
You need to decide early on the theme of your videos and what you want your channel to be known for. YouTube is ridiculously popular: there are more than 300 hours of video uploaded every minute, so you need to put in some work to make sure that your videos will stand out.
The name of your channel should be unique, and should tell viewers what kind of videos they can expect from you. You can also choose to have an attractive logo that people will remember.
Be consistent in your content, and also when delivering your content. Your subscribers will get bored and unsub if you don’t provide them with new videos on the reg.
Take note of what your viewers love most. Consider making more of that, and even making a series or playlist.
Check out Ryan Higa, who has more than 19 million subscribers who all look forward to a new video every single week. They always have something new to see, and it keeps people coming back week after week.
3. Create High-Quality Videos
You may have interesting content but if the production value is too low, people will often stop watching after just a few seconds. If you can, invest in some nice video equipment to capture HD videos, and use professional video editing programs.
Videos should be neither too short nor too long. People on the web have a short attention span so make sure you catch their attention and keep it – don’t stray too much off course or you risk losing viewers.
You’ll have to find the right video length for you, based on the type of content you’re putting out, your purposes, and your audience. Start with videos that people actually want to watch, and figure out how to embed your products or services into them in a way that doesn’t take away from the entertainment value.
VSauce, for example, has done a great job of producing very high-quality content. They found their niche making videos that are longer than average, but it works great for the type of content they put out.
There are two basic kinds of content you can produce on your channel. The first is “Pull Content.” These are videos that have a wider and more viral appeal, attracting new people to your channel and convincing them to subscribe.
The second type, “Push Content,” refers to the kind of videos you make for your subscribers. You’re giving them what they come to see, delivering on the value they’ve come to expect from you.
For the most part, people watch videos either to solve a problem/learn something or to be entertained. You need to make sure that your videos either inform or entertain, if not both.
This is another reason why determining and understanding your buyer personas is significant – it will help you answer the questions of how much to inform, and how much to entertain.
4. Collaborate for the Win
If your channel becomes fairly popular, or even if you just offer some high-quality, interesting content, there’s a good chance that other YouTubers with similar audiences would be willing to collaborate with you.
This is a great way to easily expand your reach. If you choose a good partner, you’ll have an automatic appeal to their viewers, and vice versa. You’ll gain more subscribers, and your previous subscribers will be glad that you showed them something new.
For starters, you can give a simple shout out to a channel you love, and you can ask them to do the same for you. This is the most basic way of collaborating with other YouTubers, but you can also go farther and even make videos together.
5. Focus on Metadata
Title, description, keywords, and tags are all examples of what you’d call metadata. Good metadata ensures your videos are discoverable not only on YouTube, but basic search engines as well.
When filling in these fields, take advantage of the most relevant keywords and tags. For ideas, check out YouTube’s autocomplete search bar, YouTube Trends, Google Trends, BuzzSumo, and Hashtagify.me.
Make sure you describe what your channel is about, other social media accounts they can follow, and include a call to action.
6. Create Eye-catching Video Thumbnails
Building a popular and successful YouTube channel will require consistent branding, and this extends to your thumbnails as well.
You’re competing with every other video on the results page, and for the most part that means people will be comparing your thumbnails. You need to distinguish yourself from the rest.
If your viewers can instantly recognize your video thumbnails, you don’t have to keep on including your brand name in the titles.
PewDiePie creates thumbnails that are consistent with his branding – pretty much every one has a shot of him reacting, making a funny or sad face. He even creates a theme for every video series. This way, you don’t even have to read the title, just one look at the thumbnail and you’ll know it’s his video.
7. Engage With and Involve Your Audience
When people make the effort to comment on your videos, you should always engage back with them. When people feel like they can talk straight to you, your company will feel more personable and friendly – very important for online businesses.
Let people feel (and show them) that you actually pay attention to what they think, that you’re taking the time to read their comments.
Your audience can become a part of your channel. Try reading comments in videos, answering questions, asking people to tweet their thoughts, etc.
YouTube star Michelle Phan has more than 8 million subscribers and is famous for her make-up and beauty videos. She shows us a great example of audience engagement with her incredibly popular series called “Pillow Talk,” where Michelle answers questions submitted by her viewers.
8. Promote, Promote, Promote
End your videos by telling your viewers to subscribe to your channel. You can do this by simply telling viewers (“like and subscribe!”), but you can also use one of YouTube’s newer features: end cards.
Create an effective and interactive end card that encourages people to subscribe to your channel AND promotes your other videos (along with your website). Even if they don’t watch your other videos immediately, they get a glimpse of what else you have to offer. This means a better chance of them subscribing to they can watch the videos later.
Epic Meal Time has this down to a science, as you can see:
Don’t forget to actively promote your YouTube channel on your other social media accounts. Use your Facebook and Twitter as platforms to let the people in your network know about every new video you produce.
Ready to be the Next Big Thing on YouTube?
These are some of the ingredients of a successful YouTube channel – if you want to be popular, you’ll need to implement most if not all of them.
Becoming YouTube famous is definitely not an easy feat, but if you commit to the tips we’ve shared above you’ll have a much greater chance of succeeding. It takes some time, but once the views and subscribers start rolling in it will start to feel pretty great.
Remember, you can speed up that growth process by purchasing YouTube views, likes, comments, and subscribers to make your channel appear more popular, legitimate, and credible.
This can be a stepping stone to help you get off the ground, but you also need to take the time to plan for and implement the organic growth of your channel. Before you know it, you might just be the next YouTube star!