Skip to main content

Social Media University: YouTube Content Strategy

Additional Resources

Programming & Producing Videos

Hook the viewer early --- THE FIRST 15 SECONDS MATTER!

  • Viewers are going to expect engaging videos that can keep their attention.
  • Create videos that hook the audience early, and keeps their interest long enough to keep them watching through to the end.

Put your compelling content first

  • The first thing the viewer sees should be compelling. This is when the person asks, "Why should I be watching this video?"
  • The speaker should address and welcome the audience, entice the viewers with a thought-provoking question or explain what the viewer will be learning if they watch.
  • Set up a compelling example that you will refer back to throughout the lesson.

Branding and Packaging

  • Branding and packaging can give your video a professional appearance; however, it is NOT the star of the video. The time dedicated to this should be short and minimal; around 5 seconds is an optimal time.
  • Allow the content or personality of the presenter to take center stage, then the viewer has a reason to continue watching through to the end.

Building an Audience and Sharing

Below are some best practices for building an audience:

Schedule and Frequency

  • Regularly update the content your channel to keep your audience engaged.
  • Make your schedule clear to your audience and new viewers (when and how often). Remind your audience in the videos, in the episode description, or through other branding on your channel.
  • Be creative and look for opportunities within your organization that allow you to publish more regularly.
  • Offer opportunities for your audience to comment or "like" or "favorite" your channel.
  • Create trailers or teasers for long-form content, if appropriate for your audience. Teasers introduce your content to viewers, and get them interested.

Create a Content Calendar for upcoming months

  • Identify the key tent-pole events that are relevant to your channel and meaningful to your audience. Tent-pole events is a content creation and publishing strategy that is meant to leverage the popularity of events to maximize audience (i.e., National Mental Health Week).
  • Be sure to create content to celebrate milestones for your organization or to produce content for "signature" events that you invent for your channel and audience.

Cross Promotion and Collaboration
Cross-promotion across channels and collaborations are two of the most effective methods of building audience and subscribers. Accessing new audiences begins with finding the channels where those viewers are already engaged.

  • Cross-promote and collaborate with other channels that would be relevant to your audience or attract similar demographics.
  • Provide a guest lecture, or contribute as a "guest spot" to your collaborators channels.
  • Look for opportunities to leverage each others audience to find new viewers.
  • Be creative with "remote" collaborators. Record video chats, or use video-response to comment on content from your collaborators.
  • Use annotations, playlists, and “links in description,” to link between your content and your collaborators.
  • Be active on your channel during any cross-promotion period.