Launched in February 2005, YouTube quickly made its mark as the top video-sharing platform of today, with extremely lucrative benefits for creators with a high number of subscribers and views. According to CBS News, the highest-paid YouTube channel of 2018 was Ryan ToysReview, a toy review channel for kids, that earned a whopping $22 million. What’s even more impressive is that the star of the channel is a 7-year-old boy named Ryan, and his most-watched video has attracted over 1.7 billion views!
So, if a 7-year-old boy can become a millionaire from YouTube, anyone can do it, right? Although anything is possible in the realm of YouTube, chances of becoming a millionaire are very slim for the average Joe - timing and luck play a huge factor in how popular your YouTube channel can become. With that being said, the number of subscribers you have is one of the most important metrics to focus on if you want a chance at becoming a millionaire, so we’ll be introducing some effective ways to grow your subscribers organically.
How to get more subscribers on YouTube
There is no shortcut to getting more views on YouTube - however, there are measures you can take to increase the likelihood of people clicking on your video. Here are some ways to increase the views of your YouTube video:
・Come up with an eye-catching video description and video title
You don’t have to be a master at Search Engine Optimization (SEO) to understand how to effectively use keywords to increase the visibility of your videos on YouTube. It’s pretty simple - just brainstorm what you think people would type on YouTube to search for your video, then try as much as possible to add those words to your video description and/or video title - smart keyword usage will make your video appear more frequently on the search page! Additionally, try to keep your video titles short and concise - shorter titles typically perform better in terms of the number of clicks they get.
・Consistency in posting videos
Once you’ve attracted a viewer to your video, you need to give them a reason to watch your other videos and ultimately subscribe to your channel. Being consistent with posting your videos on a schedule is extremely important in this regard. Once viewers notice that you have a pattern with how many videos you post per week/month, they’ll have expectations, and you’ll need to keep up with those expectations if you’re serious about building a strong viewer base.
・A click-worthy thumbnail
When your YouTube channel is at its very early stages, sometimes a well-written title or video description won’t be enough to make viewers click on your video. Hence, the choice you make in the thumbnail for your video can often be the deciding factor for viewers to click on your video or not - choose an image from your video (i.e. a screenshot) that can captivate people to check your video out!
・Educate yourself on YouTube algorithms
Although YouTube’s algorithms are complex, there are certain factors they take into account that can help you get more views in the long-run, if you have a strong knowledge of how the platform’s algorithm works. To be precise, you should focus especially on the ‘Watch Time’ statistics for your channel; the higher it is, the higher your videos will rank on YouTube.
・Optimize your YouTube channel
It’s a great idea to work on branding yourself on YouTube, and using your YouTube channel’s homepage is a great canvas to do this. You should focus on creating a logo for for your channel, a banner image, and add links to your personal page and social media profiles. If you’re not a designer, don’t worry - even a professional picture of you (think LinkedIn) can suffice as your YouTube channel’s profile picture. Make sure to take a look at the YouTube channel homepages of top YouTubers - you should strive to make your homepage similar to theirs, at least until you reach a higher ranking.
・Give viewers a reason to subscribe
Just because people may enjoy watching your videos, it doesn’t mean they’ll automatically subscribe to your channel. You’ll need to give your viewers a good reason to click the ‘subscribe’ button, and you can achieve this through any sort of incentive. For example, you can create giveaways on your channel (e.g. discount codes, free items) and tell your viewers to subscribe to your channel to join the giveaway.
Growing your subscribers and views organically: What Not To Do
Since increasing your video views and subscribers can take an immense amount of time and effort, a lot of people have looked to other ways to achieve this more quickly by buying subscribers. However, when it comes to YouTube or any social media site, there really is no shortcut - buying your subscribers won’t change the quality of your content; people will see right through it if your videos aren’t up to par.
Here are some things we highly urge you not to do:
- Buy YouTube Views - don't do it!
Keep in mind that YouTube is owned by Google, and Google definitely knows when your numbers are inflated from buying views. As cliché as it may sound, patience really is a virtue - don’t ruin all the effort and time you’ve spent on your channel by purchasing views and likes for your videos. Scams are also synonymous with sites that offer view-purchasing services, so it really isn’t worth the risk.
- Including too many video advertisements
Once you have at least 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 watch-hours within one year, you’ll be eligible to monetize your YouTube videos through the YouTube Partner Program. Joining the program will allow you to make money by including ads in your videos, which is great for you. However, from the perspective of viewer and subscriber retention, ads on your videos can spell disaster if you overdo it and add five ads on a 10-minute video. Make sure to space your video ads out in a smart way so that it can be less bothersome to your viewers while still adding financial benefit for you!
- Excessive click-bait titles
Here's an issue that many YouTubers are guilty of: click-bait titles. While it certainly can push people to click on your video, doing this on most or all of your videos will only hurt you in the long run - no one likes to be mislead! If you're going to add a click-bait title for your video, make sure it at least has some relevance to your video content, and that you're not doing it on more than 10% of your videos.
A Final Note
Growing your subscribers organically is a long journey, but a journey that's well worth the risk if your heart is set on YouTube success. Social media trends are always changing, so make sure to always keep yourself up-to-date and adapt to these trends - a YouTuber that made millions last year can make nothing this year if they don't adapt.