There are so many styles to choose from for your channel. Most of Steli’s videos involve simply talking to the camera vlogger-style. Other YouTube channels feature an interview style. Some are completely animated with voiceover.
Choosing which format is half a question of personal preference and half audience preference. If you know your audience loves interview shows, you may consider having a lot of guests. If they prefer listening to one person tell stories and give advice, then a format similar to Close may be a good fit.
Of course, the best way to know what works is to test. Research is good, but you won’t know what your audience loves until you’ve clicked publish. Maybe start your channel by experimenting with a few formats. Ask viewers what they prefer—or find what you like best. You may find you’re most comfortable creating videos in a specific style.
A Few Marketing Best Practices
Successful YouTubers must find ways to attract their ideal viewers to their videos. Here are some tactics to consider:
As I alluded to before, YouTube is owned by Google. Many of the same keyword research tactics used for optimizing your website can be used for your YouTube channel. Use relevant keywords in the title and throughout the video description. Freshen up on your SEO skills here.
Obviously, every time you create a video, post it across all your social media channels. But also dive a little deeper. Research hashtags, join relevant groups, and tag people who may be interested or featured/mentioned in the video.
If you have guests on your channel, request that they help you spread the finished product. Usually guests are more than happy to share videos they’re in—it’s great publicity!
You can also try to be a guest on someone else’s YouTube channel to drive new viewers to your channel. This is super popular in the YouTube ecosystem.
Since you’re talking about relevant topics, many of your videos will likely be packed with great keywords. By using a transcription software, you can embed the YouTube video in a blog post (like we did here) and also have a full show transcript below. This may help people on Google to find your blog and, as a result, your video.
Create Quality Videos
No matter how great your marketing strategy, it’s hard to sell a low-quality video. Put time into every video. Creating regular quality content was the main strategy Steli and his team used to launch the Close YouTube channel. Steli says:
We just kept persistently producing relevant content for our audience and optimized this content for organic search. To be honest, we could have done a much better job when it comes to promotion and distribution.
A common maxim in content marketing is to spend 20% of your time creating content, and 80% promoting it. We did it the other way around, and it worked really well for us, but that’s because from the get-go we approached it as a long-term play. That being said, if you have something worthy of an audience, I think you should be a lot more proactive about getting it in front of that audience than we were.
The Key Is Getting Started
To wrap things up, I asked Steli what advice he’d give to an entrepreneur wanting to launch a YouTube channel today. Here’s what he told me:
Commit yourself to a consistent publishing schedule, and keep putting out quality content. For the first year of publishing videos, we were pretty much the tree that fell in a forest and no one heard it.
We had almost no views. But every once in a while, a founder or a sales rep would send me an email and tell me how much value they had gotten out of my video. That was enough to keep us going.
If I would have cared too much about the number of views or comments we got on our videos during the first year, I would have stopped. But we understood that this was a long-term game.
Got a YouTube channel you’re proud of, or just getting started? Share it with us in the comments so everyone can see what you’re up to.