Your list of Your YouTube subscriber is not yet another vanity metric. The easiest way to improve your organic scope on the second-largest multiverse web site is to get more subscribers.
And if your goal is to actually make money on YouTube, many monetization features need to be reached by reaching the subscriber thresholds. For example, in order to become a YouTube Partner and start earning ad revenue you need at least 1,000 subscribers. And the more subscribers you have, the higher you climb on the “profit point” lader of fancy YouTube (think: prizes, managers, production aid.).
But for those of us who aren’t trying to go viral or become YouTube stars — we can hear you out there, you’re saying “Actually I’m only here with long-form video promoting my brand’s digital strategy! “—subscribers are important as yet. Why? For what?
Since the YouTube algorithm decides 70 per cent of the one billion hours of content people watch on YouTube every day. That means your ability to meet new eyes increases when you have subscribers bumping up your play counts, watching time and interacting.
If you are searching for more views on YouTube, check out our guide here. But do you want to convert viewers into subscribers? For a list of actionable strategies please read on.
Bonus: Download a free guide to discover the exact steps one maker has taken to achieve over 23,000,000 views on YouTube with no budget and no costly equipment.
But let’s first address the elephant inside the house.
Why Don’t YouTube Subscribers Buy
You’ve probably found this article because you’ve been looking for an simple hack. A hack so quick it can make youTube user famous with zero effort?
Let’s see, we understand. We are not shame nuns; we have to be effective in having the busy people.
But the developers behind the world’s best YouTube channels are not wasting bot subscribers their time or resources. They’re too busy making amazing videos.
They don’t bother and you shouldn’t either.
First let’s look at how free services for YouTube subscribers operate. It is a double-stage process:
Through subscribing to and enjoying other platforms, you receive your ‘free’ subscriptions, as advised through the company. Many of them ask you to subscribe to 20 channels, and want a lot of videos. 10 channels, in return, will connect to yours.
After contracting yourself out as a one-person clickfarm for a few days, you get bored and decide to spend the $10 USD (or $30 or $100) without all the hassle to get your fake followers.
The setup as a whole is fairly close to the time we tried Instagram engagement pods. The service wins either way: either they get your time, or your money. What is it that you are getting?
Bot subscribers not engaging A bad look for your real audience, who are possibly very interested in authenticity The risk of running away from the fake engagement policy of YouTube (tl;dr you may get banned) Possible stink-eye of any brands wanting to partner with you At the end of the day, it’s just not worth it.
For the meantime, there are plenty of prank videos out there that promise to provide the answer for millions of subscribers. Although we love inventiveness — for example, asking an anonymous Google employee who appears to be working like something out of The Secret to grant you your subscriber request — these videos are only very useful if you’re the individual who created them. (Because he who made this one had 600,000 views.)
Now let’s look at some concrete strategies in the real world that will not waste your time.
How to get YouTube subscribers for free: 17 tips
First, take a look at our guide to building a YouTube channel from scratch, if you are just starting out. It is a lot of work but it is a clean slate, too. And we’ve assembled a list of beginner tips for YouTube, to help you save time.
And now, in order to make our best practices for turning viewers into subscribers from simplest to most difficult. Don’t tackle them all at once. Experiment with each of these tips for every new video that you share, or introduce one a week. Here we are going.
1. Ask your viewers to sign in
I told you first, we started with the easiest ones.
Often you just need to remind your audience. The big red subscribe button is omnipresent, but for your new photos, you may also want to point out the bell beside it that flips on notifications. It. Easy.
Will the tip sound too salesy for you? This is your reminder you have useful stuff, so you just make it easier for them to keep up with the work you’re doing.
If you already do so, remember to prove why your channel is worth subscribing to. And make sure you do it right when you’re most in love with you (e.g. right after you’ve received fresh and valuable knowledge or made them laugh). Don’t do it anyway
2. End your videos with the one that you are working on next
Signing up to a YouTube channel is an anticipatory act. When you’ve done your job right, viewers who’ve just seen what your brand is about are prepared to want more.
Hyping the next post, and making it obvious to not skip it, is the most organic way to inspire people to sign up.
This, of course, needs a good grasp on your content schedule, and understanding what’s next to come. (More on that soon.)
3. Tell your audience, and make friends
If you are building relationships with your viewers, they are more likely to want to continue to watch your work. Respond to comments. Back to their outlets.
Yeah, it’s fun if your video is commented on by a famous YouTuber but who knows who will be famous next year. Develop a peer group, and foster one another. (Yes, I’m thinking about the theory of shine.) Also, when you’re tuned in, your audience can give you plenty of free content ideas for your next film. Don’t worry, you don’t need to take them all off.
Using Hootsuite to control your YouTube presence and not only can you upload and schedule videos, you can add streams of feedback to your dashboard too. That makes checking simple, answer,
4. Edit your art
Your YouTube banner invites everyone to search your channel by clicking over. They maybe just watched a video and they’re searching for more. They are probably a possible client. Put the best foot forward.
Your banner needs to be clean, on-brand, convincing and optimized for all devices — this is the fussy part. For example, you don’t want key information covered up by your social media buttons.
We’ve got a handy guide for making your own YouTube channel art, along with the most up-to-date free templates.
5. Name the thumbnails
A thumbnail is a still image with 1280 x 720px that serves as a cover for your video. And they’re your first, best chance to persuade people to click on your video too. Although some that suggest using the most “eye-catching” template (which would seem to mean screaming red capslock over a man’s shocked face and a image of a … tomato?), one size doesn’t suit everything on YouTube.
We’re not here to win cold views, however.
Take a look at your videos page to turn a viewer into a subscriber. What happens to a new viewer? Sleek, competent and reliable videos that suggest a continuous quality commitment? Or a whimsical mishmash vying for attention?
You want to try clear branding through all of your thumbnails. Using the same font, the same color scheme, or even the same structure of the frame so that people know (at least subconsciously) that they are watching a video from your canal.
For example, John Plant has built up up to 9.9 million subscribers with understated, streamlined thumbnails to its survival Primitive Technology platform. They’re not light-hearted, but strong. And most of all, they’re clickable.
6. Insert your videos into your blog or website
This one is win-win, because with the Google algorithm, embedding video into your website could boost search rankings for your site. And as far as youTube viewers go, you are putting your video right where people are already looking for the and likely to think about it.
7. Using clickable Tools from YouTube in your videos
A few years ago YouTube destroyed annotations, and good riddance. Pop-ups are one throwback to the 90s without which we are all better off.
That said, YouTube has some other, less annoying, tools to use for you: End screens: these are still photos at the end of the video where you can alert viewers to subscribe, or attach another call to action, before the YouTube algorithm pushes them on to the next video.
Branding watermarks: this is an additional subscribe button that will hover all over your video, even in full screen. Like this:
8. Make A Playlists
Playlists are a perfect way of growing the watch time on your site. They even inspire people by lining up the best content in one place to click on subscribe. (Or your related material, in many places.) Epicurious, for example, treats their playlists on YouTube like TV shows. It’s really bingeable and if, when there are new videos, people want to be alerted at the end, they’ll subscribe.
Meanwhile, LEGO uses playlists more loosely, adding videos by topic to specific playlists (i.e., all the videos inspired by Minecraft go in one; all the Star Wars videos in another)
9. Run a Challenge
Check out our guide to running a YouTube contest if you want a short-term spike in interaction, or just feel like you have languished in a plateau of subscriber counts.
Key steps include choosing a reward that matters to your audience, and asking viewers to subscribe and turn on updates to get involved.
10. Celebrate any milestones with your user
Everyone is fond of a round number. Celebrate them and thank the people who brought you to this place.
For motivation, here’s a video featuring reactions for every single milestone you may ever reach.
11. Issue videos according to clear schedule
With trust, several experts cite a rule of thumb as to how much creators will post video on their channels. For example: starting with one video a week, growing to 3-4 weeks as your channel grows.
The idea is more videos = more viewers screen time. But prioritizing quantity over consistency may have inconveniences.
If your goal is to turn viewers into subscribers, first you need to concentrate on consistency and next you need to be consistent. (You will then continue to think about the quantity.)
If you regularly post videos, people will know that more good content is coming, and they will be more likely to press subscribes.
You may also use a social media management tool such as Hootsuite to schedule your videos for uploading later on YouTube.
12. Entice your followers from other outlets of social media
That means cross-promoting on Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook — wherever you’ve formed a fan group.
That can be as easy as encouraging people in your Instagram or Twitter bio to check out your YouTube channel.
Instead, cross-posting your videos through platforms will make the most of your investment in video production.
For eg, now that IGTV accepts horizontal long-form footage, uploading your masterpiece over there is an simple move too.
That said, if your ultimate aim is to get more subscribers, you can post social teaser snippets and make sure that you connect to your YouTube channel to push your audience over there.
Pro tip: A tool for social media scheduling such as Hootsuite makes cross marketing much easier. And we’ve got a full guide to building a calendar for social media posts.
13. Study your keywords to title your posts, and identify your niche
This tip for gaining views is really significant, so it bears repeating.
Looking at the keywords that people are already searching for on YouTube relevant to your subject matter will help you title your new video and pick your tags. But it could inspire your next video subject too.
For instance, if you have a YouTube channel about making kombucha at home, some preliminary keyword research may reveal a bunch of topics that interest YouTube viewers on the same subject, such as how to select the right brewing vessel, how to clean your brewing vessel, or how to perform second fermentation. Each of these themes may be the subject of their own images.
SEO tools such as the Google Keyword Planner will help you recognize the words people use to find the details that you have. The goal is to locate topics in a sweet spot: lower scores in competition but higher volume of quest.
This helps you to avoid making videos that no one is looking for (see the next tip for that one), or videos with titles that no one is able to identify.
It will also help you avoid creating content on an already highly competitive subject before you’re ready.
14. Giving people what they do not even know they really want
80 percent of your videos should be SEO-focused to pull in new eyeballs (see previous tip), but that leaves 20 percent for value added content. By this we mean exclusive videos that nobody else can make, or that nobody else has thought about.
Because to get people to click the subscribe button, you need to go beyond functionality and offer value outside of existing patterns of searching.
As a plus: the blue ocean approach is where you get to be innovative and do something fresh and original (a.k.a. producing videos in an uncontested market space)
Like showing off your possum skills in massage.
15. Creating interesting, and evergreen content
The 80/20 law is here for you. Evergreen 80 per cent, topical 20 per cent.
Evergreen content is key for bumping up your watch time, indeed. (Halloween videos aren’t so popular coming February.) But if you’re trying to encourage people to subscribe, topical content is important.
Why? For what? Since there is a need to consume topical material instantly, or close it. So if your hot take on the current political debacle, NBA game, or red-carpet gala can’t-miss additions to the internet debate, then your fans will want notification. And they’re going to pay.
16. Partner with other networks
It goes back all the way to Tip # 3: Make Friends. Use your networks to collaborate with other producers of YouTube, and attract viewers from each other. Your audience is assured of your suggestions and their viewers are assured of theirs, so take advantage.
For example, “Top That” by Popsugar! “Series invited to speak with visitors. This was like a daytime chat show more like the ghost possum masseuse for viral video stars.
17. Partner with popular
This one is listed last, since it is certainly the most difficult.