We all reach that point in life when we want to start a YouTube channel but shy away from it. Despite the misconception that starting a channel is hard, the process is quite simple. However, analytics is an important part of starting a YouTube channel. Furthermore, promoting your content undoubtedly should be a primary focus.
How to start a YouTube channel?
Getting the fundamentals right
With technology getting user-friendly, you can start off your own YouTube channel in a few clicks. All you need to do is
- Sign in on YouTube
- Click on the upper right user icon
- Go to the settings
- Click on create a new channel
- Set up your channel’s name
- And you are good to go.
Utilizing the about section
As soon as you create your channel, the first thing that will pop up is the about section. This is the best play to write information about what kind of channel you have. This will inform the users and help them understand your brand and work. You can link your websites, and social media handles as well in this section.
Getting creative with your art
YouTube gives you an option to upload a cover photo, which is a banner that displays your brand, channel, and work. You can keep it the way you want it; you can think of something that will resonate well with your audience. Your cover photo can be a maximum of 4 MB with 2560 × 1440 pixels.
Here are a few examples of great cover photos:
Know your audience, and master your content
You need to be sure of what kind of content you are planning to put out in the long term and set the tone of that accordingly from the start. For example, If you are planning to open a dance channel, you need to figure out your costumes and space of performance. Similarly, if your channel is something specifically content-related, you will have to figure out the resources, your speaking style, and the kind of topics you want to talk about.
After you’ve done this, you can analyze the likes and dislikes of your audience and accordingly improvise.
An introductory video
YouTube is a creative space, and to start off; you can show your creativity in the form of a trailer video. This will help your audience understand what to expect. Make your video in a style that leaves the audience waiting for more. Here is an example of how the trailer video looks on your page.
Then comes the official video
With a gap of a few days, you should upload your first official video. Put in your best work. Take good care of the video quality. And hit that upload button at the right corner of your login screen.
What all should you do as a beginner?
Investing in quality sound and video equipment
When starting a YouTube channel, doing it all from your smartphone might not be the best idea. But that doesn’t mean that you need to invest in the most expensive equipment. Just start with a simple vlogging camera, tripod, and mic. Most YouTubers have a different mic for different types of videos.
The camera quality should be clear for viewers, and the mic should be noise-canceling so that viewers can hear you without any hindrances. Figure out the one that you will need most, and just buy that one. No need yet to buy heavy software as well; simple video editing apps will do well. You can also try checking out video-editing courses.
Planning your content
This is the most important thing that you should take out time for. The best part about ideas is that they come anywhere and everywhere, so keep a notepad ready to jot down your idea. This is because it is highly likely that you will forget if you don’t write. Then think about them and improve.
Take inspiration from different places, connect the dots, and create out-of-the-box content. Do not hesitate to try something new.
Ensuring crisp content
Fluffing on the same points, again and again, makes any content boring. Even if it is a little shorter, ensure that it is on point. People will actually derive value from it, whereas fluff will waste everyone’s time. Plan ahead, write out your script and practice it rigorously before uploading.
Know that there is more than content
There are millions of YouTubers out there, with a lot of them having the same content and ideas as yours. Now, it is important to stand out, and you can do so with the help of optimization. Just like SEO, YouTube has its own parameters of optimizing your video. Hence, you should ensure that you are using a keyword-rich title that helps your target audience find you faster.
Consistency is the key
Understand that growth on a creative platform like YouTube takes time. You should not give up in the first few days or months of starting this journey. You will surely succeed in due time, only if you are consistent and constantly working on providing the best content.
Making use of other social media platforms
You can let people know about your channel through your various account handles. You can include it on your website and blog about it. Go ahead with other ways that you think can be helpful in letting more people know about your channel. That should be the goal.
Viewers love engaging YouTubers. You might have seen a lot of YouTubers asking viewers in their videos to comment about what they think of the video or if they want to share anything. Well, this helps get more engagement as more and people will comment more on your videos. Reply as much as you can and create an engaged community.
Things to consider before starting a YouTube channel
Your target audience
It is extremely important to research before starting a YouTube channel and understand who your target audience is. Otherwise, it is an aimless creation of content. Having a target audience gives purpose, helps you understand what you need to improve, and also helps properly targeted promotions for that group.
You need to be sure of all photos and videos you already have for posting and the ones that you need to make. Analyze this need, and start creating using various graphic designing apps. You can also use your social media handles and post attractive one-page templates that will help promote your channel.
Necessary skills and tools
When starting a YouTube channel, it is a must that you need a good quality mic, camera, and editing software. Spending on these things should always be thought of as an investment.
Now, obviously, you need to have skills in the area that you are planning to make your content in. But that does not mean that you forget other life skills in the process. Virtues like patience, consistency, and practice are relevant and need to be built upon. It is easy to doubt your own skills and self-worth, but know that it just takes time for everyone.
How do you stay consistent?
The first thing is first, START RIGHT NOW. This may seem like obvious advice, but most people keep overthinking and finding the right time to start. Don’t worry if you think that your content is not good enough. The only way you can be sure of that is to start and keep improving.
You should be ready to make efforts when starting a YouTube channel to ensure growth. Yes, work speaks for itself. But if you just upload your video and sit back, it might not be a very good way to go ahead. Constantly make efforts to engage your audience. When they wait for your videos, you will also get the motivation to keep making content consistently.
Find a strategy that works for you. It is good to post more often at the start, but you should not commit yourself to make a video every day when you know that you won’t be able to do it. If you think you can post quality content twice a week, go ahead and do that. Setting unrealistic expectations from yourself will absolutely ruin the fun factor. You don’t have to let your passion die by putting unnecessary pressure on yourself. Go at your own pace.
You should focus on your niche. If you have decided that your channel is going to be about food, then keep it STRICTLY all about food. You can try different cuisines and other aspects of the food itself. However, one day if you click a nice picture, don’t add photography to the list. Focus on one thing and build the most out of it.
Know that analytics matter more than you think. The first metric is click-through rate. It simply means the number of thumbnails divided by the number of clicks. For example, if your thumbnail impressions are 2000, and 200 people click on it, that is a click-through rate of 10%.
The other important metric is watch time. This just records the watch time of your video. Focusing on increasing your watch time ensures that YouTube will promote your content more. The rematch is also important. It shows how many times a person is coming back to your videos. The days when you are not working on your video content, focus on the analytics. As you learn more, you will understand and improve more.
How to get more audience when just starting a YouTube channel?
Optimizing description box
YouTube gives space for 1000 characters, where you can be creative and write about your brand. This piece won’t be available on your channel but be used by search engines. So, it is a very good idea to include the main keywords in the opening lines of your description. Here’s an example of a great description by Vox’s YouTube channel.
This is the best way to make your audience stay on your page. The playlist not only adds related content together but also keeps on auto-playing. This saves the user from switching to another channel. Many YouTubers do that so that the users can binge-watch their content for hours.
Analytics is a blessing literally, especially when you are just starting a YouTube channel. It will also tell you the time and day of the week when your audience is the most active. You can use it to your advantage and post your content exactly at that time.
Organic growth is good, but when there is so much competition, it is important to make efforts to be seen. Make use of the YouTube ad campaigns to get better reach.
Asking to subscribe
You can get something only by asking for it. Even when people like your content, they may forget to like, share, and subscribe. These metrics are of utmost importance to you, so take a few seconds in the end and ask people to subscribe to your channel.
Interaction and engagement tricks
The basic like, comment, and subscribe
There is an option to sort the comments by most popular or newest. It is very easy to boost engagement by replying to the people who comment on your videos. The next thing you can do is encourage your viewers to like and subscribe to your channel. Making playlists, sharing links on other social media platforms, and messaging also helps drive more traffic.
Verifying your account
Well, there are a lot of benefits that you can receive by verifying your account. Here is a video to help you understand how and why to do it.
This is one of the features that you can have access to only when your account is verified. There are four ways to go about it. The first one is to go to the “stream now” option. The next is to do it through the events tab; this lets you preview the stream ahead of time. The third one is to do it through the mobile app; this stays archived on your channel. And lastly, you can do it through your computer webcam.
Getting ideas from the trending videos
The trending videos are the ones that often receive a lot of engagement. They represent the trends in popular culture and the viral hits. You can take ideas from here and incorporate them in your video in style for higher engagement.
YouTube partner program
You can register as a partner if you hit 1000 subscribers and around 4000 watch hours within a year.
Make the first move and ask YouTubers and influencers to collaborate with you. This gives you a higher reach. The audience of the other YouTuber or influencer will also be watching you when you collaborate with them.
Host giveaways now and then so that people get hooked to your channels. Make the contest rules in a way that helps you get more engagement. For example, telling them to share your videos with 3 friends and telling them to follow you.
How to survive on YouTube?
Staying on schedule
Once you start posting at your specified time, people will start waiting for your content. For example, a lot of YouTubers post on the main page stating that their next video is coming out on, say, Friday at 7 p.m. This creates suspense, and people tend to set reminders for your videos. Then they start expecting that always, so stick to your schedule.
Be relatable and shareable
Try to make your content in a way that people can relate to you. This will ensure that they share your videos more with their family and friends, and ultimately, this gives you more engagement.
Ready to deal with the negativity
A lot of people will try to bring you down by posting negative comments on your videos. Rather than believing those things, have confidence in your content. Some people will like your content, and some won’t, which is completely alright.
Crucial things that nobody tells you about
The Music element
Music is one of the most underrated components of a YouTube video. If chosen thoughtfully, music adds the tone to your content and delivers exactly what you are trying to say. Adding music also gives your content an identity, in a way that people hear certain music, and they know that it’s you.
It is not always possible to shoot content at the time you have promised your viewers. The best way to not disappoint them is to create stocks of videos at once only. This will help fill gaps between your videos and also help you stay consistent.
The downloadable assets take very little of your time but add immense value for your users. For example, if you have a cooking channel, you can create free downloadable PDFs and link them in your description box.
Creating a newsletter
You can create a newsletter and ask your viewers to subscribe to that so that they can get updates about your channel or any other benefit that they can have by doing so. You can also add little virtual gifts that people get when they subscribe to your newsletter.
Link your channel on all your social media platforms
Nobody wants to go through the trouble of typing and searching for your account on YouTube. But, when you link your account on your social media platforms, people get easy access. That is the more convenient and preferred way of reaching any channel.
The importance of analytics
Between 2017 and 2019, the number of YouTubers has almost doubled in number from 15 million to 30 million. As there is such a huge crowd of creators already present, you need to take the analytics very seriously in order to be visible.
We have discussed the importance of click-through rate and watch time. Now, you need to understand what you can do from your side. The first thing you can do is use online tools and do keyword research.
YouTube tends to rank videos based on various metrics, and keywords seem to be an important one. Know what your audience wants, and do keyword research accordingly. This will give you complete insights into how your audience searches for a topic and what you can do to improve that.
- Every video you upload should have a strategy and purpose behind it. Be consistent with the time of uploading, and the title of each video is important. That is the only power you have to make people open your videos.
- The titles should be natural and have seamless keywords in them. Do not stuff the keyword ever; it becomes very obvious, and people often misread intentions then.
- One thing that you can do is put an interesting description of at least 250 words down below; it is engaging.
- The next tip is to never add numbers to your video. Add them in the description if you want to, but never in the title.
- You can use hashtags as well in moderation to signal its relationship with other videos. However, ensure that you are not overdoing it. It just takes away focus from the main thing: Content.
Analytics is an important part of starting a YouTube channel promoting your content and undoubtedly should be a primary focus. But while doing that, don’t forget that content is the king ultimately.
With so many established creators, it has become a place of fierce competition. However, that should not be the reason for you not to start. The point is to get started. Keep these tips in mind when starting a YouTube channel. Instead of procrastinating, just research well, focus on your content and make the most out of this creative space. It will slowly make you more confident and expert in your art. Do not let the starting setbacks stop you. They will only make you smarter in your journey ahead.