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YouTube Subscribers: How Can I Increase Mine Without Buying Them?

How to increase your YouTube channel
Image credit: Christian Wiediger

Since it started in 2005, YouTube has continued to grow at a massive rate. Each month there are over 2 billion visitors and over a billion people watch YouTube every day. YouTube is the leading video platform on the internet. Social media sites like Twitter, Instagram and Facebook have tried to introduce their own form of video capabilities, but none compare to YouTube.  

If you regularly watch YouTube, there is a good chance that you have set up a YouTube channel. The next thing is growing the number of subscribers on your channel. Due to YouTube having such a large number of users, this gives you the freedom to create whatever content you want. 

Tips For Getting More YouTube Subscribers 

Cheaters Never Prosper

Something you should never do is buy YouTube subscribers or viewers off a website for money. This goes against the YouTube guidelines and will see your channel receive a penalty. Not only is it a waste of money, it means you will not have an actual fan base for your channel, instead just a large number of bots. 

Make Sure to Plan

Before you begin, think about the kind of channel you want to create. Try to plan out a few videos that you want to create that you think people would be willing to watch and would then subscribe so that they can watch more of your content. Try to think who you are trying to target with your videos. 

Attempt to make an upload schedule. For example, uploading on Mondays will allow your subscribers to know when to check your channel to see the fresh content that you have produced. Having a concise plan will allow you to have a structure to your YouTube channel instead of just improvising. 

Make Entertaining, Engaging and Informative Content 

All the best videos on YouTube are the ones that are able to incorporate information, entertainment and while engaging the audience. People have short attention spans, especially online, so it is pivotal that your ability to keep them on both your video and channel. Although longer videos are advised as it can be beneficial for YouTube monetization, there is no point to make long-winded videos that will put the audience asleep. 

Depending on the type of content you make, it is advised to make videos around the 5-8 minute mark. 

The Importance of SEO

In order for YouTube users to find your videos, you’ll need to always optimise your titles. Optimizing your title will also ensure that you show up on Google search results. 

Using a keyword (or key phrase) on your title can be a great start to getting new subscribers. For example, if you do video tutorials on how to fix cell phones, you’ll want to use a relevant title that includes the name and brand of the cell phone you’re fixing in each video.

Make sure your title is descriptive enough so that when viewers see it in their search results they’ll know it’s exactly what they are looking for. Keep in mind your title should never be longer than 50 characters. Never use the word ‘video’ on your title because it’s a waste of characters and is simply not necessary. 

Laptop displaying SEO
Image Credit:Myriam Jessier

Design Your YouTube Channel

You can brand your YouTube channel whatever way you want. If you are a business then including your company’s logo on your profile picture or channel banner will make you more recognisable to existing customers.

Your YouTube banner should look neat and professional as it stands out when someone clicks on your channel. On your channel banner, you could put buttons to your social media platforms as a way to promote them.

Social Media

Having social media accounts like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram is a good way to promote your channel. Social media will allow you to engage more with subscribers, it is an easier platform to communicate with subscribers rather than just a YouTube comments section.

If the viewers have a more personal connection they are more likely to stick around and continue to watch you. When you upload a video posting it to all your social media accounts will encourage subscribers to check it out earlier.

Smartphone with social media apps
Image credit: dole777

Releasing snippets of videos and posting it to your socials is a good way to excite viewers before you have actually released the full video, almost like a trailer to a blockbuster movie. 

Thumbnails   

Just like YouTube titles, it is pivotal to engage your subscribers with your choice of thumbnails for your videos. Using self-designed images gives you the freedom to design your own thumbnails to entice new viewers, which in turn will mean more subscribers. The thumbnail will most likely be the first thing someone sees when viewing your channel so it is important to reel them in straight away.

Use Annotations to Invite Subscribers 

Annotations are pop up messages that appear throughout videos on YouTube. When used correctly annotations are a good way to encourage people to subscribe to your YouTube channel, they can be placed throughout your videos. But, be careful not to place too many annotations throughout your content as it may become distracting and cause the viewer to stop watching your video.  

Optimise Every Video Description

Just like with your title, it is vital to optimise your video descriptions as it can help in gaining subscribers for your channel. It falls under the same benefits as optimising your title, it will help you show up on the results when YouTube and Google users search relevant terms. It also gives viewers a better understanding of what is being featured in the video. 

Try to keep your descriptions to only a few, short paragraphs that will inform rather than bore your viewers.

Optimize Your Meta Tags 

Meta tags are specifically there for YouTube and Google search engine results. Including relevant words that will help you get discovered. If you’re unsure how to get started, take a look at content creators that make similar videos and see how they use their meta tags.. Don’t just copy and paste the same meta tags that someone else has used, make them relevant to what your video is. 

Overstuffing your meta tags with irrelevant tags and too many relevant tags will only hurt you. For example, if you are teaching how to apply a screen protector to an iPhone 6 try meta tags such as: ‘how to apply screen protector,’ ‘how to apply a screen protector to an iPhone,’ ‘screen protector how to,’ etc. Don’t go over 6 meta tags unless you’re using ‘single word’ keywords instead of phrases.    

Collaborate With Others 

A good way to reach a new audience is to do a collaboration video with another YouTuber, this may be tough if you are a channel with few subscribers. Collaborating with a channel that produces similar content to your own content means that people are more likely to subscribe because they are already watching videos from a channel that is similar to yours.

A great example of a YouTube collaboration was when KSI and PewDiePie decided to review memes together. With both being two of the most popular creators on the platform the video performed very well with a whooping 12 million views.

Interact with Your Subscribers

Making your YouTube channel feel like a community is vital, interacting with your subscribers will make them feel like they have a more personal connection. The best way to interact with your subscribers is definitely through the comments section on your videos. Ask the viewers questions throughout the video as this will encourage them to comment. Make sure to attempt to respond to as many of the comments as possible, even if they are negative comments as they can show you where you are going wrong in your videos. 

Another great way to interact with your subscribers is through your social media, as mentioned above always promote your social media as it may be an easier way for your subscribers to reach you rather than the comments section.

Keep in mind there are trolls who are essentially people who love to say negative or vulgar things to anyone they can possibly find on the internet. The best way to handle those trolls is to delete their comments and block them. 

You are not expected to reply to any of them and will always be better off when not responding to such behaviour. Responding would only encourage them to continue, even if it means making multiple accounts. 

Every YouTubers, unfortunately, faces this problem so do not take it personally and just continue working hard to grow your subscribers.  

End-Screens 

End-screens can be used to promote another video you have made or you can have a button to subscribe to your channel. Using end-screens means people are more likely to stick around on your channel longer if they see a video that interests them, which in turn, means they are more likely to hit the subscription button.

YouTube end-screen
An example of an end-screen from Sky Sports YouTube channel.

Create Playlists 

Creating a playlist of any other videos you have created will result in YouTube suggesting it when the video is over. When people are searching for a particular kind of video playlists show up first over single videos, this will result that the videos in the playlist getting more views. 

Celebrate Milestones

Always celebrate your achievements and thank your subscribers. When you hit a certain milestone, always do a special video as a way to give back to the people that have decided to hit that subscribe button if they enjoy the special video they may be inclined to subscribe so that they will see more when you hit a different milestone.  When MrBeast hit 10 million subscribers he decided to give away $30,000 to his subscribers. This is a very extreme version of how to celebrate milestones as MrBeast has great sponsorship deals that allows for these amazing giveaways. 

Summary

Growing your YouTube subscriber count will be a long and slow process, but in the end, it will be worth it. Having a community thanks to your YouTube channel will feel very rewarding and you will feel you are actually making friends online. 

If you are looking for inspiration for your YouTube channel, feel free to check out ProfileTree’s channel. 

If you have any problems do not be afraid to contact us.

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