Are you tired of creating awesome YouTube videos that just don’t get views? While views aren’t the only metric that speaks to the success of your YouTube marketing efforts, it’s important to get plenty of views on your videos if you want to get the best response. If you’re ready to get more YouTube views, you’ve come to the right place.
There’s no shortage of YouTube users. More than 2 billion monthly active users watch more than 1 billion hours of YouTube videos every day—more than Netflix and Facebook videos combined. Using the tactics you’ll find in this article, you’ll become part of that 1 billion hours.
How to Get More YouTube Views: 10 Tactics That Really Work:
How to Get More YouTube Views
Here are 10 tactics you can use to get more YouTube views. The tactics provided assume that you already have a YouTube channel. If you’re starting from scratch, check out our tutorial on how to create a successful YouTube channel.
Once you’ve got a YouTube channel set up, here’s what you can do to get more views.
1. Find Your Niche
If you want to be successful on YouTube, you have to have a niche. While you want to get more YouTube views, you aren’t making videos for everyone. YouTube is an extension of your marketing message and, as such, needs to be targeted to the audience you’re trying to reach.
After all, tons of views from people who aren’t really interested in what you have to sell aren’t going to do you much good.
This doesn’t mean that you should limit yourself to a specific video type or a single topic—that will get boring fast for your viewers. What we recommend is using your buyer personas to map out the type of content and topics that will resonate with those viewers while still staying on brand.
Don’t have buyer personas? Here’s how to find your target audience on social media. You can also check out how to create detailed buyer personas from HubSpot.
2. Make Good Content
Once you have a niche and know who you’re targeting, you’re ready to create great YouTube content. This means creating videos that people actually want to watch, all the way through. Easy, right?
Your YouTube videos should speak to your target audience in an entertaining and engaging way about subjects they care about. And, they have to provide value. This content is an investment you’re making in your business and should entice viewers to either sign up for your paid content or buy your products. It won’t keep them engaged long enough if it’s not useful to them.
For example, The Fitness Marshall has tons of free content that provide value to viewers even if they haven’t paid for a subscription to the channel:
If you sign up, though, you get access to exclusive content, too:
It’s also important to remember that YouTube, at its core, is a search engine. Like all search engines, YouTube is designed to show users the most relevant content related to their query. If your videos aren’t meeting the needs of viewers who are searching for your target keywords, your views are going to lag.
This brings us to our next tactic to get more YouTube views…
3. Use YouTube SEO
YouTube is the second largest search engine after Google. And, like other search engines, YouTube has its own ranking signals it uses to organize search results. YouTube SEO starts with keywords, but high engagement is key. In YouTube’s own words:
“Videos are ranked based on a variety of factors including how well the title, description, and video content match the viewer’s query. Beyond that, we look at which videos have driven the most engagement for a query, and make sure it’s easy for viewers to find those.”
Translation: YouTube wants you to drive engagement. If you’re successful, they’ll reward you with better visibility in the search results.
Engagement on YouTube can be measured in a number of ways: likes, comments, audience retention, watch time, card/end screen clicks, and more. If you can’t get your audience to engage with your videos, your content won’t rank as high in the search results and you won’t get more YouTube views.
4. Customize Your Video Thumbnails
Sometimes getting more views is as simple as standing out from the crowd. As users are scrolling through search results on YouTube, thumbnails are a huge part of what they look for when deciding if they’ll click through to the video.
Brian Dean of Backlinko recommends using non-YouTube colors for your thumbnails: blue, orange, green, or yellow. This is so your video stands out from the red, black, and white that blends into the YouTube branding.
Your YouTube video thumbnails should give viewers a clear and accurate snapshot of what your video is about. And, yes, it should stand out. This could mean using a bright color to attract viewers’ eyes, including an eye-catching graphic, or even taking a minimalist approach that tends to go against the norm these days.
Just like your content, your video thumbnail should be created with your target audience in mind. You may need to test out various thumbnail styles to find out what your audience wants to see.
5. Use Cards and End Screens
Cards and end screens are YouTube tools you can use to promote other videos from your channel, increasing engagement and getting more views on YouTube. To use cards and end screens, you’ll need to verify your YouTube account by clicking on your profile picture in the top right of the screen, clicking YouTube Studio, choosing a video (or uploading a new one), and clicking the pencil icon next to cards or end screens.
Cards can be set up to appear at any time throughout the duration of your YouTube video. They can be used to direct viewers to other videos and playlists or you can use them to poll your viewers. Using a poll is a great way to get viewers to engage with your video and also get valuable feedback.
End screens are dedicated frames that you can add to the end of your videos. With end screens, you can direct viewers to the next steps they should take now that they’ve viewed your video using strong calls to action.
You can add cards and end screens from the YouTube Studio. Just click Video Manager > Videos and find the video that you want to add the card or end screen to. Then, click Edit. Now you can add cards and end screens:
6. Create Playlists
Playlists are a great YouTube strategy and an easy way to get more YouTube views. When viewers watch videos that are part of a playlist, the next video in the playlist starts automatically after the current video ends. This means that viewers can watch related videos without putting in any effort at all, grabbing more YouTube views for you, and keeping YouTube happy at the same time.
Creating playlists requires thought and planning. You can’t just throw a bunch of videos onto a playlist and call it good. Playlists should be curated experiences for your viewers. This means that playlists should contain related videos. It helps a lot to plan out your content in terms of series rather than one-offs. That way, as your videos are released, you can add them to the appropriate playlists.
To see this in practice, we’ll take a look at Marie Forleo’s YouTube playlists:
As you can see, Forleo has segmented her videos into several playlists covering different topics like Starting a Business, Marketing Strategies for Your Business, Build a Meaningful Business, and more. When you watch the Starting a Business playlist, you’re getting a list of videos solely focused on starting a business. There’s no marketing advice here—that’s in the Marketing Strategies playlist.
7. Write Clickable Titles
Your video titles have to be compelling enough to get clicks if you want to get more YouTube views. This doesn’t mean using clickbait titles. In fact, using clickbait is probably going to get you an increase in clicks at first but if you’re not delivering on what you say in your video title, viewers are going to stop trusting your channel and YouTube is going to rank your videos lower.
So, how do you write good, non-clickbait YouTube video titles? Glad you asked! Here are 3 simple tips:
- Use your target keyword. You should include your target keyword in your video title, preferably at the beginning. This is a signal to YouTube and potential viewers that your content is what they’re looking for.
- Keep your video titles short. You don’t have unlimited space for your video titles. Keep them short and punchy.
- Highlight the benefits. Why should viewers watch your video instead of someone else’s? Tell them why in the title.
8. Write Indexable Video Descriptions
For this next tactic, we’re going to turn once again to Brian Dean of Backlinko.
Video descriptions, like keywords and video titles, let viewers and YouTube’s algorithm know what your videos are about. The Backlinko team created a YouTube video description template that they say works great. Here’s what it looks like:
In this section, you’ll include your target keyword one time in the first few sentences since YouTube puts more weight on the keywords that are mentioned earlier in your description. These first few lines are also what will show up for your video in YouTube search and are what viewers will use to decide whether or not they want to watch your video.
In no fewer than 150 words, share detail about what viewers will get from your video. This description will help YouTube understand what’s happening in your video, so make sure to use the keywords you want your video to rank for.
Adding links to your YouTube video descriptions is an easy way to get a backlink from a high-authority website, direct viewers to more information about you and what you have to offer, and get viewers to your social media profiles so you have a stronger online presence.
Want to create video descriptions that get people to take action? Here’s our guide to writing the best YouTube video descriptions.
9. Promote Your Videos on Other Platforms
You should always promote your YouTube videos on other social media platforms, but don’t just share a link to the YouTube video. Social media platforms favor native content, so take the time to create short “teaser” videos for each platform to drive your followers to your YouTube videos.
You don’t have to limit yourself to sharing your videos on social media, either. YouTube videos are easy to embed on your website and in emails, too!
10. Build a Community
While YouTube is, as we’ve mentioned, the second-largest search engine after Google, it’s also a social media platform. That means you should invest time in not only sharing videos on a consistent basis but actively engaging with your audience as well to build a community around your channel (and brand).
One of the easiest ways to engage with your audience is by replying to comments. It doesn’t take long and does a lot to show your viewers that you’re interested in what they have to say. This, in turn, will foster a sense of loyalty that will follow your brand off the platform.
Bonus tip: By reviewing and engaging in your YouTube video comments, you’ll also find new video ideas that you know are going to perform well because they’re coming directly from your viewers.
To really stand out on YouTube and get more YouTube views, you can also subscribe to other channels in your industry or niche and leave comments on their videos. You should also share videos from other YouTube creators that your own audience will enjoy. While it may seem counterintuitive to promote another creator’s content, you’ll be rewarded in the same behavior from other creators as well as increased watch time.
Grow Your YouTube Views Faster
You don’t need to implement every tactic we’ve outlined here to get more YouTube videos. Ultimately, you’ll want to keep your target audience in mind and do research and testing to find out what resonates with your audience, specifically. But these tactics provide excellent options to get you started so you can make adjustments based on the needs of your audience.