Promoting a new YouTube video is a scary task. You may have seen the high prices for ads. But there are many ways to accomplish promotion for free. There are three major categories of promotion when you’re trying to do it for free. They are social, link and karma. Social deals with sharing the video with your friends and family whether in person or on the social Internet. Link promotion is finding places to share links with the general public. Karma promotion is a special kind of promotion where you help others and hopefully they help you promote your videos.
Word of Mouth
This is one of the best ways to promote anything. You may have heard the term, “household name,” meaning that a product has gotten so popular that people use the name of the product often. For instance, “Googling” has become synonymous with searching the Internet. This kind of thing only happens through word of mouth. No ad campaign can do what word of mouth can do. So tell your friends and family about the video. Use a link shortener so they can remember the address. Ask them to tell others.
Facebook is kind of like word of mouth, but on the internet. However, the fact that recommendations happen easily on Facebook means that the “likes” and “shares” don’t mean as much as true word of mouth advertising. But it is still important. Make sure to share your link. With Facebook you have enough room to give a little summary of the video. Do so. They may not read it, but if they do, it looks like you care enough about the video to actually do the work to talk about it.
Twitter is similar to Facebook, however, the characters used to do the sharing are very limited. The previously mentioned link shortening service is important here, although Twitter uses one automatically nowadays. You need to put more effort into deciding how to share your video. Do you just provide the link and the title? Do you try to come up with a four or five word introduction to make it more relevant to your particular Twitter audience? A lot of thought goes into the best “tweets.” And make sure your Twitter feed is not just full of links to your own content. It makes you look like you’re begging for people to view your videos. Have some conversations with your followers. They’ll love you more for it and you might get retweeted more often.
Google+ is still relatively new. However, YouTube recently changed their commenting system to specifically use Google+. Since the social network is now built into YouTube, it would be a good idea to start using that unused Google+ profile you have and start promoting your videos there. Google+ has some of the best features of Facebook and Twitter. It allows for a conversation with the public like Twitter, but also has features to keep your updates for specific groups of people only, like Facebook. It also allows room for a decent description of the video, much like Facebook.
Link promotion is all about finding places to post your links to your content so that other people will find it easily. Some of the biggest sites for this are bookmarking sites. Some of the biggest bookmarking sites are sites like Digg and StumbleUpon. Once again, you don’t want to promote just your own content. It becomes too obvious and nobody will really care about what you promote anymore. So make sure you’re finding other content and promoting it. If you keep it relevant to the content you create, then you will quickly become an authority on that topic and people will follow your links more often.
There are website out there that let you write articles that you can make some residual income on from the ad revenue they provide. They are a great way to build up a side income. However, they are also a great way to promote your other content. Write an article that covers the topic of the video. Include a few links to other videos and content that also relate to your topic and then make sure your own video is linked in that article also. This also helps to make you look like an expert on your topic and people will notice that you’ve linked to content other than your own. If the article goes viral, so will your video. And making a little extra cash on the side is never a bad thing.
Blogs and Forums
The last of the link promotion tactics we’ll cover is other blogs and forums. Find blogs and forums that cover the topic your video covers. Find a way to respond to blog posts or forum threads that is relevant to those posts and threads but still allows you to link to your video. For instance, do not just put “Hey. You should check out my video. LINK HERE.” Instead, make a meaningful post that adds to the conversation and work a link to your video into it. It gives you a good reason to link to the video and people are more likely to click because they will believe you are being sincere.
Karma promotion is a different kind of animal. You are not directly linking your own content when you do karma promotion. We’ve actually already touched on some of the concepts of it above, such as keeping your responses relevant to the conversation. Here are some ways to use karma promotion.
Get involved in the community. Have conversations in the comments of other YouTube videos. Make sure the conversations are relevant to the video you’re commenting on. Hit the “like” button. Tell the video maker he has done a good job. Give him advice on some ways to improve his next video. Do whatever you can to become a part of the YouTube community. This lets you make connections. And they will become real connections. These same people will end up watching your videos and hitting the “like” button. They will also give you advice. This helps you to build fans among your peers, and there are no more loyal fans than those who do what you do.
Speaking of helping others, another big thing to do for others is promote their content. Use some of the tips from the other categories and promote someone the work of someone else. Imagine the article you wrote went viral. Your video will get some attention from that but so will the other videos you linked in that article. Those people will be grateful and will start promoting your work also. But never expect anyone else to promote your work just because you promoted his or hers. You need to actually be happy to promote the other work because you genuinely like it.
The final method of karma promotion is collaboration. This is another way to work with others and help them out. If you make some videos with other people, then their fans become your fans. Some of the best YouTube videos out there are collaborations and they have brought long lists of subscribers to all of the parties involved.
Feel free to tell your friends, family and followers about your new content. They are the people who want to know about it the most. Find places to tell strangers about your new content but don’t beg. And finally, be a part of the community and help others out. This will give you more fans and people will promote your videos for you because they like you as a person. And please, make sure to use your new promotion powers for good.
Getting views on your YouTube video is more difficult when you don’t have a budget. If you have a small budget, it can make a big difference over doing it for free. For example, even a $50/month budget towards your YouTube video will help you garnish thousands of new views.
Pair this with some great content and video endcaps highlighting your other content, and this will amplify your efforts, as these new viewers will trickle down into your older videos as well. Even if you don’t have a lot of money to spend on views, this will ensure you will be getting the best bang for your buck for each of your paid viewers.
If you’re earning money with YouTube’s ad program, re-investing those earnings into your channel is a wise decision. Most large YouTubers reinvest at least half of their earnings right back into their channel. After all, if your channel isn’t growing, then it is declining, as competition is always growing and there are new YouTubers every day. Create great content, and make sure you’re promoting it!
Do you have any free tips to share? Please let us know in the comments below!