Have you ever dreamed of starting a YouTube channel? A place where you could share what you know with the world and eventually get paid for it? Well, now might just be the best time to do it.
YouTube is on fire right now! It’s the second most visited site in the world. Plus, users watch over 1 billion hours of video a day, and 73% of adults use the platform. That’s more than Facebook!
Creating valuable content to attract lots of subscribers is a great business idea. And I’m passionate about teaching you how to grow a YouTube channel and achieve your dreams.
I feel lucky to have created 2 YouTube channels that have each amassed over 150,000 subscribers. At the same time, it wasn’t just luck. I consistently followed a playbook to make my goal a reality.
Today I’m sharing the 3 essential elements you need to organically grow your YouTube channel.
Choose wisely: Start a channel around a popular and profitable niche
When you start anything, whether it’s a business, YouTube channel, or a WordPress blog, you must answer these questions:
- Who is this for?
- What market am I serving?
- And what problem am I solving for them?
Of course, you also want to choose a niche you’re passionate about – or one you want to learn more about.
The key here is picking a niche that has a large enough market demand to fuel your growth. You also don’t want to be in an overly-competitive market.
Here are some examples of large “evergreen” niches that are always in high demand:
- Health/Fitness/Weight Loss
- Hobby products, rangefinders, tabletop games, cameras, etc)
Here’s an example: my site is in a sub-niche of Wealth/Business (creating websites) where I show visitors and subscribers how to create an eye-catching, professional website.
Does that make sense?
Use an SEO (Search Engine Optimization) keyword research tool like 'Keywords Everywhere' to help you do this. There you’ll find out how popular and competitive primary and secondary keywords are.
Next, you want to determine your goals for your YouTube channel. Consider metrics like
- Average watch time
As you know, the more subscribers you have, the greater your potential to make a living. Shooting for 100,000 subscribers is the right number to start bringing in decent ad revenue from AdSense on Youtube.
If you’re aiming for a different revenue model, whether that’s getting your own sponsorships, selling products, or generating leads, it’s possible to see income rolling in from your channel with a subscriber count of 1-5,000!
While goals can help focus your efforts and get you going, they won’t do the heavy lifting for you. Next, you’ll learn how to grow a YouTube channel by attracting viewers and subscribers.
Consistently produce engaging, high-quality content
There’s no way around it – you have to consistently produce amazing and practical content to make it on YouTube. Notice I said content and not videos themselves. We’ll further explore that later…
That said, there’s a terrible, destructive lie out there that keeps most people from starting a business, let alone a YouTube channel. You might have let it stop you before…
“I have nothing original to say.” Then you convince yourself that you can’t provide enough value to get paid.
As a successful YouTuber, I’m here to tell you that can’t be further from the truth.
Here is the lowdown to creating helpful, actionable content for your growing audience. First, check out what your competition is doing. Then…
- Figure out what their content is missing
- Can you better communicate or explain a particular topic?
- Is there a way for you to dive deeper with your content?
- How can you make it more entertaining or funny?
Answering these questions will start you on the path to creating compelling content. Of course, knowing even a little about marketing and persuasion principles will take you even further.
But you not only have to create excellent content. You have to do it consistently, too. A good rule of thumb is to release at least one video a week. The YouTube algorithm loves this!
Creating 4-5 videos before you launch is also a useful strategy to reduce stress and increase your creativity.
Do all of this plus what I’m going to talk about in the next section, and you will grow your fan base.
Just don’t expect it to happen overnight. You must be patient and plug away. It could take up to 6 months or more before you see breakthrough results…
Going back to that 100,000 subscriber goal, just remember the larger your audience, the more monetization options you hold.
In addition to ad revenue, you’ll have options like getting paid sponsorships (up to $2K a video with 100K subscribers), promoting relevant products to your audience (getting you an affiliate commission), and more.
Again, that’s why picking the right market and delivering exactly what they want is a must. Because not all markets can get you to 100,000 subscribers and beyond.
As you’ll learn in the next section, video quality isn’t everything, especially at first.
According to a recent social media survey, it’s 3 times more critical that your video relates to viewer interests. Video quality isn’t as much of a factor.
Learn as you go and improve video quality over time
The dream of starting your own YouTube channel sounds fun and exciting… Until you realize how time-consuming shooting and editing can be.
There are pros and cons to everything. And editing is a con if you’re time-strapped or aren’t willing to learn. But it’s a pro if you are eager to learn and go on an adventure! Editing is always an in-demand skill you can use to help others.
But If you have the money, outsourcing some of your YouTube production might work best for you. You can just shoot the video and leave the rest to your virtual assistants.
Here are some tactical tips and advice for getting started:
- If this is a business for you, keeping overhead low is a must. So get cheap equipment to start. Use your phone if you have to.
- Be comfortable with your first videos looking and sounding like dog do-do. It’s okay if you’re camera-shy. Do it anyway! Insightful and valuable content is what counts.
- The goal is to improve with every video you create. Don’t worry about your competition at first.
Listen, I know your inner-perfectionist is dying after reading that advice. I get it. But never let “the perfect be the enemy of the good.” Or else you’ll never get started. Here are some other ideas that just plain work…
- If possible, shoot in natural light. If you can’t, use artificial light.
- Always use vivid, attention-grabbing colors in every video’s thumbnail. Don’t forget to do the same in the actual video. Also, make sure your video titles are targeting specific popular keywords your market is searching for.
- Use the best soundproofing materials you can get to make sure you have a nice, clean sound.
- Just be yourself and be relatable while on camera. It’s no secret some of the largest YouTube channels are personality-driven.
- Once you build your subscriber base, don’t be afraid to get more creative and try uncommon ideas.
Now, remember there’s no shame in asking for something once you deliver quality content that your audience values. That’s part of “class 101” in how to grow a YouTube channel. So make sure to…
- Always cross-promote your channels other videos. Like a blog that links to its other posts, this builds your SEO rankings and increases your channel’s views. Say something like, “By the way, if you loved my video on (x), then check out my video on (y)!”
- Always be transparent and have a call to action somewhere in the video. For example, you can explain, “Dig my videos? Well, I can create even more free content for you the more you like and subscribe to my channel!”
- Use TubeBuddy, a back-end YouTube tool to analyze your channel’s performance and more.
- And believe it or not, the first 24 hours of engagement (commenting and liking) are critical to your YouTube rankings.
Remember, these are the strategies I’ve used to grow my 2 successful YouTube channels. And taking consistent action on this advice is the first step to outstanding results.
Of course, you still want to continue learning about your market and experimenting. Because the more you know your market, the better you’re able to solve their problems.
Building a successful YouTube channel is important, but it’s not the only thing
Yes, building a successful 100 K+ YouTube channel using free traffic is a legitimate way to build a business. But it shouldn’t be the only way.
Dan Kennedy, one of the most successful copywriters/marketers of all time, once said, The number one is the most dangerous number in business.”
Why? Because if something happens to that one channel (like YouTube), you have no backup plan.
That’s why every business needs to do things like build an email list and establish a WordPress website. If disaster strikes your social media account (for whatever reason), you still have a direct connection to your audience.
I’m not an email list-building expert but I do have a step-by-step WordPress tutorial for beginners that makes it super easy to start a website regardless of your skill level.
You can always use your knowledge on how to grow a YouTube channel to drive your audience to exclusive content on your website where you can collect their email address. There are so many possibilities, but that’s just the beginning!
Well, here’s to you building a successful YouTube channel and website! I wish you the best!
About the Author
Hey, I'm Dale! I've helped tens of thousands of people just like you from around the world create beautiful blog, portfolio, and business websites with our easy to follow guides and tutorials over at CreateAProWebsite.com.