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YouTube Tips Promoting Outside of YouTube

schoolofselfmade

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I have a few notes that I have made this last year about the various platforms I go to share my work and figured I would share them here. Of course these are my personal notes; I would appreciate any feedback insight that anyone else can provide on the subject as social media isn't necessarily my strong-suite.

The Process of Promotion
I am going to go down the list of platforms that I use to promote my own work, but before I do this there is something very important that needs to be said first and foremost. You do not want to just jump on any platform and start spamming your YouTube videos to every single person you can get a post in front of. That is going to turn off the audience of that platform faster than just about anything else you could do (seriously... try talking politics or religion before you go spamming your most recent video. At least then you'll get a response). The single most important thing you can do on any platform is to become a valued, contributing member of that community well before you ever share your work. Done successfully it really doesn't matter what platform you share on, you can be successful on any! That having been said here is my (albeit limited) insight into the platforms I promote on:

Facebook/Twitter
Twitter is my second largest platform-following next to YouTube, and my results for sharing here are near abysmal. I think I see about 6% more external traffic (which equates to maybe 1% overall traffic) via Twitter posts. But the real value in Twitter and FB is the ability for your audience to engage with you. It gives them an opportunity to learn more about you, and the more they do the more invested they will be in your work. So while the views may not improve much as a result of the major Social Media platforms the quality of view on your channel may improve. Keep your feed interesting, valuable and consistent to show your audience that you are worth subscribing to. Paid promotions are available here, although I find that absolutely worthless (not that I've ever participated, only seen others). Why pay money for another platform to do exactly what the YT algorithm was designed to do for free?! You won't do it better! And from the small sample size I have been privy to paid promotions have a return rate of something like $1 per subscriber gained. Just not worth it.

Instagram
I just do not like Instagram. I understand the value due to its size, but the lack of ability to offer links makes it near impossible to get potential viewers to cross-platforms over to YT and the bulky comments make it difficult to interact. It's a great place to show 'behind the scenes' photos of what is happening in your life, and that is good for engagement. But overall I am just not a fan.

Reddit
Yikes! Ok, Reddit is a great platform in that it almost certainly offers a thread for whatever your channel is about. The obvious problem with Reddit is the vicious, vile nature of the people there. You better have thick skin if you are thinking about dropping you video to a sub-Reddit. I've been completely chewed out for making totally legitimate, on-topic posts to sub-Reddits... and I just do fishing videos. It's nice that videos here will play on platform (as opposed to making you jump to YT) but the retention analytics for my videos seen on Reddit is one of the lowest of all External Traffic sources. That will differ for different audiences, but the lack of retention makes it almost not worthwhile to post there at all.

Forum Websites
Now this has been a very successful avenue for my channel. I have between 3-5 website forums that I post my work to depending on the value my post may provide to each site on any given topic and have seen great results. Now mind you, I spend a little time on the forums contributing to others posts and generally being a 'good neighbor,' and sometimes I will go a month doing so without posting anything of my own. But when I do I get good results and occasionally I get REALLY good results. Much like on YouTube if you can make a post in a high-traffic forum-thread that sees a lot of attention it will hold itself in position for more views, and the ones that I managed to have stick on the top of key forum threads have garnered me thousands of views on individual videos. That's rare; on average I would say I get between 250-500 views per video if that video is good enough to be posted on all my forums.

Discord
I don't do Dischord well... in fact the only reason I do it is because I was invited into a group with some YouTubers whom I have a lot of respect for and was honored simply to get the invite. Dischord is very similar to Reddit in appearance and style, although it allows you more of a 'community' experience and from what I have seen nicer, more genuine people (of course that is likely subjective based on the audience). You won't gain a lot of views by making posts on Dischord to my knowledge, but this is a great place to get involved with a community of like-minded creators or fans of your channel's subject matter in order to grow your authority on that subject.

Tik Tok
I don't do TT, but I have a couple friends who are pretty good at it and here are my thoughts based on what I've heard. It's a great platform for fairly easy videos and fast growth. It isn't yet monetized (though I hear that this is changing in the near future). it is hard to get people to cross platforms in general, though Tik Tok is slightly easier than others due to the fact the overall audience is already watching videos and was likely watching YT before TT existed. As of last year TT was one of the fastest growing platforms and the algorithm was easy. Good platform for growth, if you have the ability to double up on the work you put into your video production.

Linked In
Weird statistic; the majority of people making $100k+ per year prefer Linked In to almost every other social media platform. Or something weird like that, ask Judy Fox what I'm talking about cuz that's where I got that stat from. The point being that this platform has people with MONEY! How do you get in with that crowd? I have no idea. Haven't figured it out, it's a hard platform to navigate. But it is an underrated platform.

Legacy Media/ Print Media
Nobody ever talks about this... but for our entire lives legacy media has been the bread and butter of the promotion world. I'm talking about TV, radio and newspaper/magazines. And yes, their advertiser rates and CPM's for ads would make ANY YouTuber jealous (they are expensive) but what platform do you trust more than a DJ on your favorite radio station or an ad in the paper? Ok, so maybe these guys are too pricey for us 'Not millionaire' YouTubers, but they do present some options for us. For starters go to your local grocery store and pick up one of those Music Magazine papers or local newspapers. Maybe pick up a copy of the campus paper at the local Community College. Last I checked it was $12 for a classified ad, and you could get a 1X1 ad for around $75. Of course this is not my approach (I'm cheap). Because I do fishing (and I like to write a lot) I go write a story and take some pictures of whatever is happening that day and I offer it to the paper for free. If it is well written, and if they are in need of space to kill (and trust me that happens more often than not) they'll throw it in there. Don't make yourself the centerpiece of the story... but if you can get a little crafty and simply mention somewhere in the story your work on YouTube you just picked up FAR more eyeballs than any ad would have provided. Another approach I have had some fun with is ordering business card magnets and sticking them to vending machines or the parking bumpers at drive-through windows. Magnets allow someone who is interested to peel it off and take it home. Also, fliers! Bands do it all the time... why have you not made a flier about your channel and posted it next to all those band fliers?!

YouTube
What? Why is this on here... I'm trying to promote my YouTube channel outside of YouTube! The thing is that of all of these avenues not one can beat YouTube in their ability to share your work out there in front of a 1) massive audience that is 2) looking for exactly what you do. For all the vitriol surrounding the algorithm it's entire purpose is simply to put the videos people want to see in front of them. The greatest service that you can do for your channel is to make great videos that people want to see and optimize them to be found in search and discovery. No amount of Social Media presence or Forum posts will ever compete with the potential that you are given on every single video you post through YouTube.

Really solid advice here.

One thing I would mention as well is depending on what your channel is about might dictate where you focus your outside promotion.

For example, in your scenario you post primarily fishing videos. A platform like Pinterest would most likely not be the best avenue because it's made up of 70% females. Knowing the audience demos of each platform will help you when deciding where to focus.

And to reiterate your point. Engagement. Give more than you take and you'll be rewarded in the long run.

Thanks for sharing.
 
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Stanley | Team TB

Stanley | Team TB

Amazingly Decent and Not-At-All Terrible Fishing
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Really solid advice here.

One thing I would mention as well is depending on what your channel is about might dictate where you focus your outside promotion.

For example, in your scenario you post primarily fishing videos. A platform like Pinterest would most likely not be the best avenue because it's made up of 70% females. Knowing the audience demos of each platform will help you when deciding where to focus.

And to reiterate your point. Engagement. Give more than you take and you'll be rewarded in the long run.

Thanks for sharing.
You know what, you are exactly right about that but I am going to take this to another level and say that because of the reason you mentioned Pinterest may be a REALLY solid place to plan a short-term campaign around. My demographic is very male-oriented... so targeting a female demographic (and providing a valuable reason as to why they would enjoy it) may be something to plan around in order to tap into something that others are not doing.
 

schoolofselfmade

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schoolofselfmade.com
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You know what, you are exactly right about that but I am going to take this to another level and say that because of the reason you mentioned Pinterest may be a REALLY solid place to plan a short-term campaign around. My demographic is very male-oriented... so targeting a female demographic (and providing a valuable reason as to why they would enjoy it) may be something to plan around in order to tap into something that others are not doing.
Honestly, you might get really lucky and have something take off from it. I say go for it.

Worst case scenario you could get some feedback that isn't from the typical viewpoint. Good luck!