YouTube: Ingredients for Making Great Videos

© | Alexey Boldin

Just uploading a video to the very popular video site – YouTube, is no guarantee that you will be instantly noticed. Making a successful presence for yourself and promoting yourself on the channel calls for a lot of commitment and willingness to learn and grow. This article takes you through these topics 1) identify and understand your target viewers, 2) 12 ingredients of great videos, and 3) consistency is important.


Prior to working on increasing the number of your subscribers, you must have an understanding of the type of subscribers you are on the lookout for. The following are some of the questions that should be discussed internally previous to starting a major campaign to win more YouTube subscribers.

  • What is the age of your target audience and where are they located?
  • What are the other types of videos they watch?

Following comprehension of your target demographic and what characterizes them, you can consider what concerns them. Step into the shoes of any one prospect of yours. What would your key worry be? What are the types of things you would most desire to learn to do? It is essential to connect the answers back to things entailing your company’s services or goods.

Following blogs or publications covering areas your target demographic would like to learn or read about and conducting surveys or browsing forums would assist you in staying ahead on the issues mentioned above. All of these are great resources to know about occurrences that would provide a great subject for a captivating YouTube video.

To learn about your target audience’s search trends, ask yourself questions such as:

  • What is my target audience desirous of watching? Check out search trends and the questions they post in social media.
  • At present, where is my target audience looking for the content they are interested in? Research your competitors. Find out the YouTube channels or other existing sites that already develop the type of content you hope to do. Try to use the aspects/techniques that make certain vblogs popular, in your videos.

These answers will take you towards developing valuable, interesting and shareable content to attract your target audience. Such nature of content is essential for getting views.


1. Follows trends and adopts a popular format

Try to use video content that is in tune with the trends. You can know what the trending topics are by checking out the top news, in general, in your field and also the trending subjects appearing in social networks. Such topics would be grabbing the attention of your niche audience. You can leverage the popularity of these topics to create content around them and thereby attract attention to your videos.

The three most popular formats for video content and which would give you the best results on YouTube are:

  • Educational: demos, tutorials, reviews, interviews and how-to guides
  • Informational: content curation, news, and other information
  • Entertaining: easy-going, fun and stuff that is just not so serious

One suggestion for making interesting videos is to upload interviews with great or powerful names in your industry. It is one of the easiest and quickest ways to develop video content because your subject is the one doing all the talking. Just find an expert associated with your industry. You’ll be able to shoot sufficient matter in just 10 minutes to create a number of fantastic videos for your channel. Trade shows, conventions and meet ups are all wonderful places to get hold of experts keen to share their views and ideas. You can even consider organizing Skype video interviews and utilize screen capturing software to capture the footage. The truth is, in general, people just love to be the subject of interviews.

2. Attractive title

A video with a unique title will be more noticeable than one with a poor/ordinary one, with respect to the search results. Compare “Cookies in 20 minutes” to an ordinary title such as “Bake good cookies.”

3. Captures attention quickly

The introduction is one of the aspects of utmost importance in a video. In addition to capturing the audience’s attention, it should present the direction and themes of the video and make the viewer want more and more. This can be done by way of clips of what to expect, graphics and personal introductions.

Let your introduction be powerful but short. Chances are viewers won’t be willing to watch an introduction that exceeds 10-15 seconds. This includes lead-ins, graphics, and titles. Hook them quick so that they move into your video’s main content.

4. Fantastic image quality

A video of high image quality will look professional. The better the quality of your camera, the better the results in your video. YouTube video looks good at 720p, however, aim for a camera with 1080p. At this resolution, your camera’s image sensor would be able to catch more video and at superior quality.

Shaky footage is amateurish and will give your viewers a feeling of motion sickness. In the professional world, these may be used at times, but with taste. Anything that assists in decreasing camera shake and steadying your shot will enhance the viewing experience considerably and make the professionalism even more obvious.

Stabilizing device such as a steady cam: This would enable you to walk around with your camera bereft of the shaky footage of conventional handheld shots. This lends an element of smoother professionalism to your videos and can assist with making things far interesting than when they were shot from just one perspective as is the case with a tripod.

5. Fantastic sound quality

Viewers would be happy to see a video that doesn’t just look good but also has great sound quality. Practically anything is better than your camera’s microphone. External microphones are more versatile and score better at capturing wonderful sound. Don’t compromise when it comes to sound. You may wonder why spend so much of money on microphones. However, remember that any microphone is far better than your camera’s in-built microphone and greatly enhances the viewing experience.

6. Content pacing

It is important that your video’s pacing does not make the viewer bored. Do not spend too much time on unexciting subjects, and let the action keep going. Do not stuff too much information into a single segment. If you are creating informative videos, think along the lines of slicing the content into many parts. This would ensure that the audience is not overburdened with information. At the same time, ensure that there is enough content to suit the video’s length. Even a second of disinterest for the viewer may prompt him to look at another video. In the case of longer videos, you can consider introducing slight section breaks at which point the pace would slow down a bit. This would provide the audience with a little time to reflect on what they viewed up to now before you carry on with your content.

7. Call to action and/or annotation

Don’t close your video with just a goodbye. Request your viewers to leave comments under the video, post the links to your videos in Facebook, or subscribe to your channel. This would result in more subscriber interactions and subscriptions.

Utilize annotations to provide a subscription button within your video. Ensure that the button doesn’t block important action in the video. Save it for the concluding segment.

You can even use a CTA to monetize your YouTube subscribers and viewers.

8. A common theme

It is essential that the content uploaded to your channel matches your theme, consistently. Suppose you start by uploading movie reviews, then always upload movie reviews or something related to it. Don’t upload sports videos later. If your content keeps changing theme, your subscribers may lose interest.

If you would like to upload content for different themes, consider creating different channels to represent the various themes. This would enable you to link to your channels but still separate your different themes of content so that your viewers are not confused.

9. Value

The video should provide a worthwhile video experience – something that is worth the viewer spending his time for. Otherwise, don’t be surprised if your video lacks in real views. Ensure that each of your videos has your best content, strategies and other information. Keep thinking how you can raise the bar.

10. Editing with good software

Software of a higher quality provides you much more control over the appearance of your video after it’s done. It also enables you to utilize special effects if your video calls for them. Better video editing software means better control over sound. Provide your video with intros and outros and a logo that calls viewers to subscribe. You can maintain viewer interest by having music (royalty-free) in the background. Well-created special effects and animated titles lend attraction to the video.

11. The personal touch

Your video should speak directly to the viewer. Develop connection and trust. Look straight into the camera and address your viewers directly. Use the word ‘you’ a lot. Be approachable and friendly – talk as though you are with a friend. Welcome the viewer. Ask questions.

12. SEO optimization

Title and Filename: The title should be compelling and have the main keyword in it, but keyword stuffing is to be avoided. The main keywords should be present towards the beginning. The title should not exceed 65 characters (inclusive of spaces). Ideally, it would have just five words. Similarly, your video’s filename should hold your main keyword. Supposing your keyword is “easy Christmas cake recipes, the file should be named filename.”easy_Christmas_cake_recipes.mp4.”

Tags and pertinent keywords: The right tags would be of help to YouTube to comprehend more about your video and categorize it. It would also boost the possibilities of your video coming up in the right sidebar of videos with associated content. Use both popular and specific keywords. Try to use the complete 120 character limit. A web page with applicable keyword phrases and terms always has a higher rank in search results. In the same way, videos with the right keywords would figure in YouTube’s top search results.

View retention: This factor counts the number of total viewers who decided to view your video to the end. If your video has the capability to hold attention from beginning to end, it’s an indicator of quality content.

Channel authority: This can be achieved with increased audience engagement and views. You can provide a link to your website, to your YouTube channel to develop channel authority.

Description: Your main keyword and a link to your site should be there in the description’s initial few sentences. To increase the possibility of click-throughs, the link must be at the top of the description otherwise search engine traffic cannot see it above the fold.

Watch later: Should your viewers put the video you uploaded in the “Watch Later” playlist, it is a means that YouTube utilizes to make out if a video should be played many times.

Views: Quite logically, the views count can considerably impact your rankings. Having quickly increasing views and a number of them indicate viral potential and quality content – factors that YouTube utilizes for ensuring videos appear in the top search engine results.

Thumbnails: The thumbnail provides the first impression pertaining to your video. Personalized thumbnails are always preferred to the snapshots auto-generated by YouTube. The best size for an image is 1280×720 px or at least ensure that the width is a minimum of 640 pixels.

Comments: The case of comments is similar to views. They indicate popularity and engagement, which can push your video to the top.

Video transcript: Incorporate targeted keywords in the video transcription so that YouTube gets a synopsis of your video.

Subscriptions: This is another factor that tells whether your content is compelling or not. If many people subscribe to your channel, it means your uploaded video or video(s) have captured their interest, and they are looking forward to seeing more of you. The more the number of subscribers, the more worthy you become of a high rank from YouTube.

Backlinks: As is the case with Google, YouTube also utilizes inbound links for the purpose of ranking your uploaded videos, and channel.

Thumbs up/down: Your thumbs up to thumbs down ratio doesn’t only tell whether you’re generating positive or negative feedback from a viewer; YouTube also uses this as a basis for recommending your video to users who might be interested in your content.

Shares: The share rate (like views and comments) may be indicative of the viral potential and quality of your video. So, the higher the number, the better.

Embeds and links: Links and embeds to your videos from reputable and pertinent sites lend authority to your videos.


Quality should be maintained consistently. You can also see what your competitors are doing to learn how to improve your videos’ quality. Also, keep to posting schedule. If you decide to post videos three times a week, you should always be posting videos three times a week. Also, inform your viewers of your schedule to create a buzz and trigger enthusiasm excitement among them to watch your next video.

Mix these ingredients together and you have a magical recipe that you can continuously use to get takers for your end dish – the videos you’ve worked so hard on.

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