YouTube marketing 101: Best practices and video ideas

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Gone are the days when YouTube was just a website for passing the time. Research says that over 500 hours of video content is uploaded to YouTube each minute. So what better way to grow your business than marketing it on YouTube?

But first, what is YouTube marketing? Essentially, it entails creating videos to promote a service or product to achieve greater visibility online. As the world’s second most-visited website after Google, YouTube allows businesses to foster a personal connection with customers, increase brand awareness, earn revenue through YouTube advertising, and generate higher sales.

If you’re considering starting a YouTube channel to grow your business, you’re in the right place. In this guide below, we answer everything you need to know about YouTube marketing:

  • What are the benefits of YouTube marketing?
  • How do you come up with video content ideas for YouTube?
  • What YouTube promotion tools and strategies can you use?
  • How do you get more views and subscribers for your YouTube channel?

How to get more views and subscribers on YouTube

1. Know your target audience.

Think of your potential customers before creating videos for your YouTube channel. Consider factors such as age, gender, income, location, hobbies, and audience behavior. What topics would they like to learn about? What videos do they enjoy watching? Define your audience, then tailor your content to fit what they’re looking for.

2. Add personality to your YouTube channel.

Audiences want to know what makes your business unique. Under the “About” tab of your channel, explain what kind of product or service you offer. Keep your description short and sweet while including links to your business e-mail and social media accounts.

Design tip: Jazz up your YouTube channel with an instantly recognizable logo, a channel art banner that distinguishes your brand, and a trailer video that reels people in. Whether starting a travel vlog or sharing your expertise, choose from Canva’s library of free video templates to keep your branding consistent across the board.

3. Customize your video thumbnail.

Grab your viewer’s attention with a scroll-stopping thumbnail they can’t ignore. Opt for vibrant colors and large fonts that are readable on mobile. Try to include human faces when relevant, as these photos tend to get the most attention. Remember that the thumbnail is your first chance to make a strong impression, so it must also reflect your branding.

4. Deliver authentic and valuable content.

Remember what we said earlier about understanding your audience? The best strategy to get more YouTube subscribers is to provide fresh, engaging, and compelling content that resonates with your viewers. Find your niche and focus on what makes your business different. Tell a story that communicates your product or service. Stay true to your brand, and you’ll be surprised at how many people find value in what you have to say.

5. Polish your video intro.

All it takes is a few seconds to set the right tone for your video. Stand out from a crowded market with a colorful YouTube intro that establishes your brand’s aesthetic.

6. Categorize your videos into playlists.

Organize your related videos into playlists so viewers can find what they’re looking for. Notice how Insider separates their behind-the-scenes videos and their explainer series:

7. Learn from your competitors.

Dive into the most popular YouTube channels and look for strategies that you can integrate into your content. What are their most successful videos? How often do they post new material? Are they doing anything remarkable in their video editing, design, or animation that might also benefit your brand?

8. Experiment with YouTube Shorts.

Attention spans are fleeting, which is why easy-to-digest video clips within 60 seconds perform well. Get creative with YouTube Shorts, the platform’s answer to TikTok. Tease the content for your long-form videos, create binge-able reels, or experiment on meme videos that bring out your comedic side.

9. Collaborate with content creators and influencers.

Like two musicians working on a fantastic song together, partnering with a famous YouTuber can give your videos a boost in numbers. Inviting guests to join your videos is a clever way to introduce yourself to a wider audience—a dedicated fanbase that has yet to discover your content.

Think back to the sensational collaboration between Malaysian comedian Nigel Ng and Hersha Patel, the former BBC presenter behind the viral egg fried rice recipe. Not only was it entertaining to watch, but the video has racked up over 17 million views and counting.

10. End with a call-to-action and a video outro.

“Smash that like button” or “don’t forget to subscribe to my channel” are commonly used expressions. Directly asking viewers to like, comment, and subscribe is a sure way to boost engagement. Switch things up a little by asking for feedback (“What did you guys think of the video?”) or coming up with a memorable catchphrase.

Design tip: Don’t let your video taper off into awkward silence. Instead, tie your video with a neat little bow using these ready-to-use YouTube outro templates from Canva.

Ideas for your YouTube channel

Now that you understand how to get more views and subscribers on Youtube, what are some YouTube video ideas you should use in 2022? Here’s a list to help you get started:

  • Reaction videos
  • How-to tutorial videos
  • Explainer videos
  • DIY videos
  • Food recipe tutorials
  • Product reviews
  • Unboxing videos
  • Home or studio tours
  • “A day in the life of…” videos
  • Shopping haul videos
  • Workout videos
  • Gaming videos
  • Behind-the-scenes videos
  • Q&A sessions
  • Trending YouTube challenge videos
  • Comedy sketches
  • Travel vlogs
  • Highlight reels
  • Livestreamed events

Best practices for YouTube marketing for 2022

It’s not enough to simply upload your video on YouTube. You must also know how to grow your YouTube channel to attract more viewers and gain potential customers. Below, we’ll show you how to promote YouTube videos and use the platform’s features to grow your business:

1. Keep your titles catchy.

Craft your video titles and descriptions with clear and concise language. Go for headline-worthy phrases and use superlatives like “ultimate” and “best” to spike interest. Better still, if your enthusiasm carries over in your writing, like food vlogger Mark Wiens below:

2. Mention relevant keywords to improve visibility.

Optimizing your video content is a must to appear as the top result on YouTube and Google search engines. Use Google Keyword Planner to research and target the keywords that your audience is most likely to search for. Place these highly-searched keywords in your video title, description, and tags to increase your chances of showing up on people’s feeds. Alternatively, you can enter a subject or question into the YouTube search bar and see what turns up:

3. Track your performance with YouTube Analytics.

Think of YouTube Analytics as your ultimate resource for your YouTube marketing strategy. It tells you your top-performing videos, where your viewers are coming from, how much revenue your channel is earning, and more. Simply visit YouTube Studio and select “Analytics” from the menu to check the statistics.

Keep an eye on these YouTube metrics to measure the impact of your videos:

4. Schedule your videos regularly.

As you learn more about what your audience likes and identify engagement patterns, steadily ramp up your video production. Sustain the momentum by uploading videos on the days when your audience is most likely to tune in. No matter which posting schedule you choose—daily, weekly, or bi-weekly—make sure it’s consistent.

5. Earn revenue through YouTube advertising.

Running paid YouTube advertising campaigns is another way to promote your business on YouTube. By turning on monetization features for your YouTube channel, you can earn revenue from ads served on your videos through AdSense and Google Ad Manager. You can also include sponsorships, endorsements, and paid product placements in your videos.

How to promote your YouTube channel

YouTube Community

According to Forbes, you only need 1,000 followers or “true fans” to become successful. For YouTube content creators, this means interacting with your followers and building a community of people who genuinely believe in your business.

Use the Community tab on YouTube to create a personal relationship with your fans and soon-to-be loyal customers. This can be as simple as replying to their comments or asking what other content they want to see in your future videos.

Social media

Want to promote your YouTube channel to a diverse audience? Cast a wide net by cross-publishing your videos on popular social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, LinkedIn, and Twitter. From embedding videos on your blog to tweeting a link to your channel, you can amplify your brand’s online presence through efficient social media marketing.

Ready to grow your business with YouTube?

Just like that, you’re all set to put these YouTube marketing tips and strategies to good use. Elevate your YouTube content with Canva’s free online video editor, which allows you to record yourself, trim video clips, and use high-quality templates for professional-looking videos. Sign up for free today.

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