YouTube has evolved from a simple video hosting platform into a social media and marketing behemoth. With 30m daily visitors watching 5bn videos every day, and 300 hours of video being uploaded every minute, the statistics are absolutely staggering; with this kind of exposure – and the monetization opportunities that come with it – it’s no wonder that a growing number of users have decided to make a living off of it.
You’ll need more than a video camera and an interesting topic to be successful though. To be a professional YouTuber, you need to be a jack of all trades, and this means understanding the basics of SEO and online marketing techniques as well as how to create and produce good content.
Luckily the rewards are worth the effort; the top 13 YouTube stars earned over $54m between them in 2015. So if this sounds like it could be the career path for you, then check out these essential tips to help you on your way.
1. Define Your Success
For some people, running a vlog is just a means to talk about their interest in make-up or model train sets with friends. Getting a few hundred followers who offer some thoughts and opinions is a nice bonus, but essentially the goal is just to have a bit of fun.
That’s fine of course, but for people looking to make it a profession, success is defined in more serious terms. Before you start, you need to be clear what your own definition of success is, and understand what will be required to achieve it. Set yourself realistic targets (for example, 50 subscribers by the end of the month) and continually measure your progress against your goals.
2. Research Keywords
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is the first thing any aspiring vlogger should know is that good content is useless if nobody is watching it. As we’ve already alluded to, there is a LOT of material being uploaded to the site – and all of it is competing for views. Therefore, to be seen, you need to understand how keywords work.
Like Google, YouTube’s search algorithm is designed to return results that it thinks are the most suitable for the searcher’s intent. And also like Google, it has tools that show you this data. Take the time to understand the importance of this, as it should be the cornerstone of your whole marketing strategy. Once you know what people are looking for, you can create your content accordingly.
Researching keywords is as much an art as it is a science though, and you need to understand how the tools work and what you should be looking for before you start building that strategy. There are a lot of complex nuances involved, so ensure you take the time to research it.
3. Know Your Competition
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Watching what your competitors are doing is important – not just to get an understanding of what you’re up against, but because it can be a positive learning process. Ask yourself what you like about what they do, and what you don’t like. What could you do better? How can you differentiate yourself, and put your own angle on something?
Don’t just copy what other people are doing though. You should be comparing your own work against your peers, not trying to replicate it. “If you’re the needle in a haystack, it’s difficult to stand out,” claims YouTube star Street Light. “Don’t just follow a trend, or you’ll get lost in the crowd”.
4. Content, Content, Content
Which brings us to the bread and butter of your YouTube venture. While the marketing and the technical side of things is vital to building viewers and subsequently your success, the content of your videos is what will always be there, and what people will always judge you on.
Nobody can tell you what will be successful here and what won’t; after all, watching somebody else play video games might sound boring to many people, but it earned Felix Kjellberg (aka PewDiePie) $15m in 2015 alone. As a rule though, your content should always be fresh, unique, and valuable to the viewer in one way or another.
The importance of the production value depends on your niche; there are successful YouTubers who use nothing more than a webcam and Windows Movie Maker. But remember that you are on a visual platform, and the more professional your videos look, the more impressed people will be. As you get more successful, you can invest in better video production hardware and editing tools, but in the meantime make sure you’re well lit, easy to understand and there is a context to the setting.
Sponsorship and Advertising
When you have built up a loyal following, you can also promote and advertise products directly (for example, a make-up channel recommending a particular brand or product). This is known as “influencing” and is popular on several social media platforms. Companies and marketing agencies recognize that this is an effective way of targeting younger audiences, and these sponsorship and advertising deals generally make up the bulk of a YouTuber’s income. If you are serious about making money, you need to focus on trying to attain these deals – this may mean tailoring some of your content.
In terms of your general content strategy, the best approach is to be consistent. Social media expert Rob Nightingale claims that people are more likely to subscribe to channels if they know what they’re going to expect. “If your audience love your rants, publish a rant on the same day each week,” he says. “Keep people looking forward to that next episode, knowing they won’t have too long to wait”.
5. Don’t Neglect SEO
By ensuring that your content is fresh, unique and regular, you’re already taking care of some of the Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) work. The real value is in the metadata though (the information and description section underneath the video). Make sure you put your keywords in all the right places, use links wisely and don’t make silly mistakes like forgetting to allow embedding on your videos (how else are people going to share them?)
SEO can be a complex nut to crack if you have no prior knowledge of it, so again – do your research and ensure you have a basic understanding of how it works, and how it can benefit your chances of getting more exposure.
Article Source: https://www.careeraddict.com/successful-youtuber