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Promoting your YouTube channel is the fastest way to reach more viewers and gain thousands of subscribers. Here’s a complete guide for small creators!

Does YouTube promote new channels, or does it only give credence to large, established ones?

Small creators always ask this question — and for a good reason. If you’re in those numbers, you’ll be happy to know that YouTube does, in fact, promote small channels! It may happen through titles and keywords instead of video recommendations at first, but it does happen.

Regardless, don’t let YouTube do all the work. There are good ways to promote your YouTube channel, from optimizing your videos to collaborating with others to networking through YouTube comments.

The Best Ways to Promote a Small YouTube Channel

Are you ready to start promoting yourself on YouTube? At a minimum, you should have two things covered already:

  1. Understanding your YouTube niche/audience
  2. Knowing the YouTube keywords you want to target

If you’re good in both of these areas, here’s how to promote your YouTube channel for free!

Write a Good Description for Your Channel

One of the easiest ways to promote your channel is by simply describing it. Explain your YouTube niche, the type of videos you make, and most importantly, what viewers gain by subscribing. It also helps to sprinkle in some keywords so your channel ranks higher on YouTube search pages.

Take Rix Flix, for example. This theme park channel has keywords like “Universal Studios” and “Florida” in its channel description. Plus, they accurately describe the channel’s purpose.

Write Fascinating Video Titles

If you want people to pay attention to your channel, write engaging titles they can’t ignore. Typically, the best titles appeal to our strongest emotions, like fear, desire, and curiosity.

Here are some examples:

  • Fear: “The Dark Side of the Stock Market (Protect Your Money Now)”
  • Desire: “What You’re Doing Wrong in the Dating Scene”
  • Curiosity: “How Getting Rejected by Harvard Changed my Life”

Emotional intrigue is the first thing to tackle when writing titles. After that, try adding relevant keywords near the front of your phrase. That helps the YouTube algorithm understand your content and promote it to the right audience!

Cross-Promote Your YouTube Channel

Did you know you can use one video to promote additional content? This is called cross-promotion, and the best way to get it done is with YouTube cards and end screens.

YouTube cards can appear at any point during a video. They’re used to recommend other videos, and that content is usually related to the topic at hand. If the creator is talking about YouTube monetization, they might use a card to refer viewers to a video about that subject.

End screens are interactive outros that appear in the last 5-20 seconds of a video. You can add lots of things to an end screen (subscribe button, website link, etc.), but the best option is to recommend one more video to watch. That way, viewers click the next video without thinking too hard.

Write Accurate Video Descriptions

Just like your channel needs a description, so does every YouTube video. The better you describe your content to viewers (and the algorithm), the more likely you are to get clicks, views, and watch time.

But writing a good description is an art form. You definitely want to use the right keywords and make your content sound intriguing. But beyond that, you want to get the length right — not too many words and not too few.

As a general rule, put your best keywords and descriptors in the first 100 characters, so viewers get the best information upfront.

Design Beautiful YouTube Thumbnails

The power of thumbnails can’t be overstated on YouTube. The more intriguing they are, the more people want to click on them out of sheer curiosity.

Here are some best practices for thumbnails:

  • Use images related to the video’s topic.
  • Create a design that’s simple and easy to understand.
  • Add some text that explains the video.
  • Create harmony between the thumbnail and video title.
  • Use a thumbnail style that matches your niche.

That last piece of advice is critical. While MrBeast can have a colorful, action-packed thumbnail (because he makes challenge videos)

Collaborate with Other Creators

If you have a decent number of subscribers, it’s never too soon for a YouTube collab. It’s the ultimate form of promotion, as you can partner with a creator who agrees to feature you in their videos.

But you won’t grow from any old collab. Here are some tips to make sure you get what you need:

  • Find creators on your level (in terms of subscribers).
  • Collaborate with people in your niche.
  • Brainstorm video ideas before sending collab emails.
  • Pick a video collab style (in person, remote, etc.).
  • Set a realistic date to publish collabs.
  • Promote each YouTube collaboration.

Create YouTube Playlists

You might think playlists are only helpful when someone’s browsing your channel, but they play a much bigger role. Most of the value actually comes from YouTube search!

Take a look at the typical search page on YouTube. You’ll notice you can filter the results by four content types: videos, channels, movies, and playlists.

Engage on the YouTube Community Tab

With the Community tab, you don’t have to leave YouTube to promote your channel. This social network allows you to engage with both viewers and non-viewers in exciting ways. You can create polls, share GIFs, and start conversations that truly matter to your audience.

We’re calling this a promotion tactic because polls can go viral with tens of thousands of votes. And like we mentioned before, YouTube shows Community posts to non-viewers too.

Promote Your Channel on Social Media

Some of the best places to promote your YouTube channel are outside the platform itself. A few of those apps and websites include:

  • Facebook groups
  • Instagram Stories
  • Reddit communities
  • Discord servers
  • TikTok

These are the best apps to promote a YouTube channel, but it helps to know the flavor of each community. What type of discussions do they have there, and better yet, how do the conversations take shape? Once you know that, you can create content in the best style for those users.

Also, what’s the culture like? Do people crack jokes, discuss politics, share memes, or post life hacks? All of this determines whether a platform is suitable for promoting your videos.

Embed Videos on Your Website

Do you have a blog or company website? If so, try embedding some YouTube videos on the different pages of your site.

When deciding which videos to embed, pay attention to the page’s overall topic. Your video should add context in a way that helps readers understand what the page is all about.

For example, you can embed the following:

  • A tutorial explaining how something works
  • A documentary of your adventures (travel, nature, gardening, etc.)
  • A product testing video that supports a written product review
  • A video Q&A

Channel Promotion: You Have TONS of Options

There are many ways to publicize a channel, both inside and outside of YouTube. So whether you use 10 of these tips or all 17, rest assured: Your audience will grow!