I've spent a ton of time this year working on improving my YouTube presence. Although I still consider myself a novice at shooting, editing and promoting my videos, I've learned a lot about the craft by watching tons of videos from people who have built large followings and have clearly marketed and monetized their channels effectively
In this article I'm going to cover 6 YouTube marketing tactics I found that you should know about in 2019. I hope you enjoy!
#1 Bulk Upload Descriptions from Creator Studio
Have you ever noticed how the best YouTubers always have some sort of default text in the video description area?
They include important calls to action. These take the form of relevant links, resources, freebies etc.
Dan Lok does this well on his channel.
He is very tactical about what he shares in his description. He shares:
- A free book to get you to join his mailing list
- A link to subscribe to his channel
- A link to his top playlists (other videos).
Cool right? Also, he can still have all of this below his regular video description. This is important because you always want at least a short description explaining what your video is about.
Well you can do that too even if you already have a lot of videos uploaded and feel like you are way behind (I felt this way).
First, you need to create your description. I recommend you see what others are doing and use one you like as a template. Just replace their information with your own and add any other personal touches. You can steal the one I made (which is a hybrid of formats I stole too) here. Just click the file button at the top left and choose "make a copy"so you can edit it. Don't request edit access, it will be ignored.
Once you've created a good description, you want to head into creator studio and select all of the videos you want to include the description.
Next, click the actions button and select "Description" from the drop down.
You'll be able to choose where you want to put the description. Append it to the bottom (this will preserve any other description text you had previously).
Next, copy and paste the description you created and press submit. Done.
Double check a video once you've completed this to make sure all links are working properly and you don't have any formatting issues.
#2 Incentivize People to Subscribe by Giving Gift cards Like Stefan James
Stefan James has a MASSIVE YouTube following and it's in part because of clever growth hacks like this one. Stefan buys Amazon gift cards for the US, Canada, Australia and the UK. This is absolutely genius as these are going to be the 4 largest markets for his viewers.
Only the first person to redeem the code will get it so users are encouraged to subscribe and hit the bell so they can get the next gift card first. They will flood to his videos as soon as they are published and he will see massive organic growth in thanks to this.
Figuring out the logistics of buying and sharing the codes, how much to give etc. is up to you. If you do Amazon gift cards, I'd recommend buying a lot in bulk to save you time on future videos. You don't have to just use Amazon gift cards of course. You can use anything that would be redeemable only once (or however many you want to give). This could come in the form of a link with a coupon code etc.
Have fun with it and your subscribers will flood to your next videos!
#3 Use Redirects to Create a Vanity Subscribe URL Like Grant Cardone
You probably know about end cards encouraging viewers to subscribe, but how about encouraging subscribers to type in your URL to subscribe?
Grant Cardone does this and it gives viewers one more way to subscribe. Honestly, I wasn't going to subscribe to his channel but curiosity got the best of me when I saw this. It made it look very legit. Almost like he had a direct "in" with YouTube. Clearly though, it's just a simple redirect from his website to his auto subscribe URL.
When you type in GrantCardone.com/YouTube you will be sent to this page...
If you have a website, all you have to do is create a page with the URL you want to use "EntreResource.com/YouTube" is mine. Then create a 301 redirect to this URL:
YouTube channel URL + "?sub_confirmation=1."
Mine is https://www.youtube.com/NathanMcCalllister?sub_confirmation=1. The redirect will look like this (I use a WordPress plugin called Yoast for my redirects).
You can read more about how to create this auto subscribe link here.
This URL can be used anywhere. You can flash it up on screen while giving a presentation to a live audience for instance. Get creative with it!
#4 Quickly Get Captions for Your Videos with Rev.com
Adding captions to your videos has a number of benefits. Discovery Digital Networks reported an overall increase of 7.32% in views for captioned videos. Why is that? The main reason is likely because Google indexes the text captions so they are more easily discovered. It is easier for them to identify what your video is about and who would want to see it.
With Rev, you can link your YouTube channel and select which videos you want to create captions for and they will upload them automatically for you.
Transcribing videos in English is a very fair $1/minute. If you want to really get crazy, you can have videos transcribed in multiple languages for between $3/minute and $7/minute.
If $1/min for a real live person is too rich for your blood, you can try out Temi.com. The rates are just $0.10/minute but the captions are done by a software. If you have a clear recording without a strong accent, you can get near perfect results.
#5 Run Comment Contests with Tube Buddy
Note: This tip requires a TubeBuddy account but you can run contests with a free plan.
You want comments and engagement on your videos and there is no better way to get comments than to run contests on your videos.
The process is easy. Simply let your users know that you're running a contest and will pick a winner randomly and to enter all they have to do is comment.
Next, let the comments roll in and "end" your contest at a set date and time. When you're done, head over to the video in creator studio and click on the TubeBuddy icon. From the drop down, select "pick a random winner."
Next, you'll see this...
A winner will be selected and you can message the winner on YouTube to give them the next steps.
Now, this feature is only one of dozens within TubeBuddy. Finding a YouTuber who creates great entertaining content AND optimizes their videos is like finding a needle in a hay stack. It is a lot of work to do things that we know would help us make more money from our videos. TubeBuddy helps you optimize your videos quickly and easily without leaving the YouTube website.
#6 Turn Off Monetization on Your Videos
Did I just grab your attention? You're probably thinking, "Why in an article about marketing would he tell me NOT to monetize my videos!"
Don't worry, this is a move to help you earn more money AND have happier viewers.
Reason #1: You Can Usually Make More Without Google Ads.
If you're like me (and the majority of marketers on YouTube) the ad revenue you'd earn from Adwords will typically be much less than promotions or affiliates that you could (or do) yourself. In my case, it's by a factor of 75X!
Reason #2 Viewer Experience Drops if You "Double Dip" in Monetization
If you're making videos that include other promotions, viewers may get annoyed that they are being sold to with ads before the video AND during the video.
Reason #3 Competitors Can Put Their Ads BEFORE Your Videos
This is the real kicker. Let's say that you have a popular video that drives affiliate sales to a product. There is nothing keeping a competitor from running ads in front of your videos and poaching your potential buyers!
How do I know this? Because I am a savage and do this myself (to anyone who isn't a personal friend of course).
The image below is videos that use the word "Clickmagick" that are monetized. I'm an affiliate for this product and could pay to have an ad with my link appear before these videos. The volume on these is extremely low and it's extremely unlikely these videos are making more in Ad revenue than they could be losing in affiliate sales lost if someone targets them.
Note: I don't target these videos currently but might in the future. If you're one of the creators below, I suggest you turn off monetization!
I'm not saying monetizing with Google is always a bad idea. It's a numbers game really. Find out how much you're making in ads and how much you're making (or could be making) with other offers (affiliates, sponsorships etc). Also, consider what potential losses allowing competitors to run ads to your videos will have.
YouTube makes it easy for you to remove monetization from videos in bulk. I removed all monetization at once. Here is one way to do it.
Just like in tactic #1, head into the creator studio.
Select the videos that you want to remove monetization from and then click on the "Actions" button.
From the drop down, select "Monetize."
Toggle the radio button to remove monetization and you're done!
If you're unsure if you should be monetizing or not, here is a cool tool that can help you estimate how much you could be earning if you choose to keep ads up.
Bonus: Add a Subscribe Button Over All Your Videos
You know that little subscribe button on the bottom right of the videos that some channels have?
Click the image below and learn how to add a subscribe button to your channel fast.
I'll walk you through the process step by step (it's really pretty easy).
Want More Marketing Tips?
Go subscribe to my YouTube channel 🙂