YouTube marketing has done a lot to help break down the traditional marketing barriers. You no longer have to spend millions of dollars shooting and distributing an international TV commercial to reach everyone…everywhere!
While you don’t have to spend money, you do have to spend time to get more views on YouTube. And a vast majority of that time is best spent making connections. I’m going to look at 5 ways you can make connections with other YouTubers to help your channel grow. To keep things interesting, there will be a few examples taken from real YouTube stars.
#1. Partnerships on YouTube have been around forever
Even the most amateurish of YouTubers realized a long time ago that working with another channel helps promote both channels. Informally it’s called a ‘collab.’ The goal is for fans of both channels to see the content of the other channel, become a fan, subscribe, and watch their videos.
The problem is that many YouTubers are already working overtime on their own content. You’ll have to work a bit to get the attention of nearly any channel:
- Make sure you know their content style well. You need to pitch them an idea that plays to your strength, their strength, and that shows you really know who they are.
- Consider having a budget to pay them for their time, or have some other monetary arrangement ready.
- Have statistics ready to show them you’re a growing channel. Your YouTube Analytics will be the big help here, but don’t be afraid to bring up any exceptional social media marketing you may be doing.
- Create a video on your channel which mentions them, even casually, to show that you’ve put thought into this. Maybe you want to comment on something they’ve said, in either a complementary or argumentative way, to open a dialogue.
- Put together a pitch that covers the above 4 points, and send it to them via any email address you can find. Most YouTubers will have a business email on their About page.
Read more tips in the YouTube Creator Academy if you want more, but they’re just going to take longer to explain the four steps above.
If you’re down for some laughs, and absurdist humour, here’s an early collab video between Epic Meal Time and FPSRussia. The EMT boys do their thing, and Dmitri Potapoff still does his thing:
As a big EMT fan, this video is how I first found out about the FPSRussia channel. I then started watching him blow stuff up – Collabs work!
#2. Link to other videos using YouTube Annotations
YouTube Annotations are a tool provided by YouTube for anyone who wants to use them. They are those popup windows you see during a video. There are two times when you’re going to use them to build connections:
- Linking to other videos of your own, creating link connections to keep people clicking on your content.
- Linking to other YouTubers, especially when they do a collab with you.
The first point is pretty obvious, the second may not be. When you’re pitching your idea above, be sure to let your collaborator know that you’re willing to link out to them. This can do a lot to get them to agree to work with you, as they know links are like online currency.
The other way that you can make Annotations work is by linking to other people’s videos and telling them about it as part of your pitch process. You don’t want to do this too often as linking to other videos will take traffic away from you. Make it part of a deliberate attempt to show a potential partner that you’re not 100% about yourself (even if you are!).
#3. Playlists start binge watching
Perhaps the greatest success of Netflix is how it allows viewers to sit back and binge-watch a whole bunch of episodes in a row. YouTubers have to put a little work in to let their fans binge watch a bunch of episodes, bringing easy views.
There are a few ways to build playlists:
- Group them by date
- Group theme by theme
- Group them by series
- Group them by appearances
Basically, any way that makes sense to you and your fans is a way to create a Playlist. One of the best examples of this comes from, unsurprisingly, the most subscribed YouTuber: PewDiePie. Here’s a look at his playlist page:
Those are just a few of his 100+ playlists. The secret to making YouTube friends here is in the upper right-hand corner of this image. Pewds has a list of ‘Liked’ videos from other creators. Getting on Pewd’s good side, and being ‘Liked’ by him, could be huge for a video gamer vlogger.
It doesn’t matter what genre you’re in, there’s always a handful of people with a lot of influence in it. These people will have popular social media accounts where they share content, and that content can be your videos.
To get started, follow these steps:
- Do a search on any social media site you like, or are strongest in, using keywords associated with your topic. Using Twitter for this is easiest as they make searching simple. You can also use a tool like Buzzsumo to help identify who is sharing your type of content the most.
- Start gaining the trust of these viral influencers by sharing their content, and tagging or mentioning them so they know it, and participate in conversations with them. You want them to start getting your name on their radar. This could be enough to get them sharing you.
- Share your own content once they start speaking with you and tagging them. “Here’s something @username will enjoy! Please share.” It is a simple way to get their attention, and use a call to action for them to share.
If this doesn’t work the first time, it doesn’t matter. There are plenty of other people to speak with and have share your content. Making sure you work on your Twitter and YouTube marketing, along with other social media, is a crucial step in building your own platform.
Just imagine what one retweet from PewDiePie can do for you like JP McDaniel experienced after he did a collab with Pewds:
— itmeJP (@itmeJP) April 16, 2016
#5. Use the embed feature regularly
As you’ve seen in this article already, even a technically un-inclined writer like myself can embed YouTube videos. Not only is embedding your YouTube videos good for your
Embedding in WordPress is easy:
- Get the YouTube video’s URL from the address bar.
- Paste this URL into the document on its own line.
- Don’t make the URL a link.
For other websites you’ll need to click on the ‘Share’ button, then Embed, copy the code, and paste that code into your HTML editor.
Try embedding the videos of other YouTubers in your blogs, or on certain webpages, and letting them know about it. Again, email and social media is how you’ll get their attention. A simple ‘Hey, I’m talking about your video on my blog and embedded it, hope that’s cool!’ can garner you that click, and that attention from a fellow YouTuber, which will help you grow and get more views.
YouTube is all about connections
We know that YouTube is a huge search engine. That video
Here are the 5 tips again:
- Start working on partnering up on YouTube collab videos. Create a pitch.
- Link to other channels and show you’re willing to give a little to get a lot back.
- Create Playlists and include other YouTubers in them.
- Use viral influencers in your genre on social media to share your videos.
- Embed videos on your website and send the creators to your website.
Just like in real life, you may not wind up being friends with everyone you try to speak with. But you will definitely hit it off with a few people, leading to you both building your channels, and getting more views.
Images: ”YouTube logo on the front view Apple MacBook Pro screen. YouTube presentation concept. YouTube is a video-sharing site allows users to upload, view, and share videos. Varna, Bulgaria – May 31, 2015./Shutterstock.com“
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