If you’ve got an Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and maybe Pinterest…you almost have all your social media ducks in a row. But you may be missing out on one of the most dynamic and engaging ways to connect with your audience – YouTube. Yes, it’s the reigning platform for all things video, and is home to many “influencers” of today, but YouTube is also king of finding information such as tutorials, how-to videos, recipes, and so much more.
You can bring your brand to life, promote your website’s products, and build a great sense of community. And with more ways to connect than ever, let’s take a look at how to promote YouTube channel in 2020.
If you want to learn step by step how to get an account started on YouTube, check out our previous post on how to get started. Need help with optimization fields and keywords for your channel? Read our helpful post here and here to get up to speed.
Use site badges
Social media icons on the AliDropship website.
Probably, it’s the most basic (and seemingly required) tactic for retail websites now. Adding icon badges to your website will help any site visitors know that you have an account for a particular social platform.
Cross promote on your platforms
Popular Vine star David Dobrik links his YouTube channel in his Instagram bio.
Retail vlogger Retail Archaeology mentions a new YouTube video in IG Stories.
Follow any influencers? Many link their newest YouTube video or channel link to their bios on Instagram or Tweet out a link on Twitter to drive traffic. If your brand has just released a new video, you can use this tactic. Want to keep your website URL in your bio? Simply create a video post on your feed or an Instagram story.
Build a presence on the Community tab
NYC-based tour guide Sarah Funk polls a question on her Community tab.
Skit channel Smosh promotes a sale on its Community tab.
If your channel reaches 1,000 subscribers, you may notice that is a Community tab appears on your channel. Note for some channels, you may need to enable this feature, and it can take up to one week to populate. Google has more information about this here.
Community is essentially like what IG Stories is on Instagram. YouTube’s Community tab is designed to help creators engage with audiences outside of their videos. This can be done with features such as polls or images and text. Some YouTubers use Community as an aside to connect more personally to their audience and fans. As a brand, you can utilize this to show behind-the-scenes information or start a conversation about your video content. Just make sure it’s different content than what you have on your other social channels!
Like with YouTube video comments, you as the creator can pin a comment to the top to facilitate discussion. This can increase the engagement of your Community.
AMSR YouTuber Goodnight Moon mentions a website she is collaborating with.
One of the most basic forms of promoting one’s YouTube channel, collaborations are popular tactics among brands and influencers alike. Whether a sponsorship with an in-person collaboration on a video, collaborations help boost credibility and exposure to the audiences of both channels involved – a win-win situation.
You can collaborate with an influencer and have him/her mention your website for its purchases. For more extensive coverage, you could give the influencer a few items from your website for free. In return, you could ask him/her to mention your social media handles and website. You can even instruct them to specifically link your channel on their screen and in their description box for the sponsored video – this is a great tactic for boosting your YouTube channel. We especially recommend this method for dropshipping store owners for one simple reason. The thing is, most of them are individuals running just a website, and not a full-on team like a traditional ecommerce business.
Engage in the comments
Lifestyle influencer Brett Conti interacts with comments.
Our very own AliDropship team is very responsive in video comments.
Yes, it sounds almost like a “duh” move, but you’d be surprised how many brands or influencers do not respond to comments. While you can’t respond to every comment, it’s smart to use your video comments as a way to gauge how viewers view your content. Oftentimes, people give suggestions on how to improve or what isn’t working – or they’ll share how much they love your videos – so comments are a goldmine of feedback. They’re also great for letting fans feel heard and appreciated. So, like with other social media platforms, be sure to give YouTube comments “likes” and responses.
Get in on the right groups/websites
This “Gym workout fitness” is an example of a private Facebook group.
Nerd Fitness is an example of an online forum community you can join.
One other suggestion here is to find groups and places online and start commenting and engaging with people BEFORE you start posting links to your videos. Note some groups or websites will require asking for permission or signing up before posting. Similar to niche research on Instagram, scouring places like Facebook groups or fan groups online can help you utilize grassroots marketing for your YouTube. And we suggest researching before posting because you’re less likely to be seen as spam if you have prior engagement on a website or chat community. Who wants a user/comment out of nowhere with a link to their own channel, right?
If you run an online sports store for example, you can find online forums for fitness and create an account to connect with people. You can find fitness chat groups on Facebook or YouTube channels for fitness and workouts and comment and engage. Over time, you can share links to your channel’s videos and you can attract people to your channel page.
Organize your channel
The AliDropship channel has a featured video as well as a playlist of videos right underneath.
Doctor-turned-media personality Dr. Mike features many playlists to organize his uploads.
Think of your YouTube channel as a TV station. TV stations have playlists that they synchronize to play segments, commercials, and such. So organize your video content into easy-to-navigate lists that in turn, will expose viewers to your other related content.
Now note YouTube’s algorithm naturally will feature your channel’s videos on the side when a viewer is already watching a video of yours, but there are still ways to increase the exposure and setup of your channel.
As seen above with our very own channel, we have what is known as a featured video. This is a main video that stays on your channel’s main page and auto-plays whenever someone visits. You can set a different video to show for new visitors or returning subscribers – check out this step-by-step video to learn how.
You also may have noticed all those playlists that we showed with Dr. Mike. Playlists are for you to organize your content so viewers can focus on a specific topic or type of video you create, in turn, enhancing their experience on your channel. Want to structure your YouTube content? Just watch this helpful walkthrough video.
Thumbnails and titles
Food channel Bon Appetit uses straightforward titles and engaging screencaps.
Tech personality Nick Nimmin uses a consistent thumbnail template with bright text font.
The thumbnails and titles of your videos are the visuals viewers use to gauge if your videos are interesting or not. So, it’s crucial to utilize these to engage your audience. Create mysterious thumbnails. Use emoticons or infographics and use fun fonts. Try to keep your thumbnail style consistent so your video feed looks clean.
With titles, keep them digestible, and alternate some in the form of questions and some with numbers in them to give a quantitative descriptor. “5 Great Instagram Ideas, 3 Must-Have Apps for Business Owners” is a good example! Also try using fun, eye-catching adjectives like “amazing” or “awesome” “must-have” to emphasize a sense of excitement. And keep your video titles within 70 characters to avoid having them cut off by YouTube’s algorithm.
And remember that as a brand – be straightforward with your videos, and try to avoid clickbait screencaps or titles. Clickbait is a form of using misleading titles or images to “trick” someone into viewing or clicking your content.
SUMMARY: Considering how to promote YouTube channel, remember it is about building a sense of community with content that is organized and visually-engaging (and of value). Your channel should also be SEO-friendly with engaging titles and thumbnails. Gain subscribers and traffic by cross-promoting your YouTube on your other social media (and your own website) but also by utilizing grassroots marketing methods on niche-centered chat groups or forums.