YouTube videos help us to build tribes of followers. They're a perfect channel for sharing not only information, but also personality. 

In the past two instalments, I gave tips for improving your sound and video quality. This week, here are 10 tips for making your uploads more compelling, in order to grow your base of viewers and get people coming back for more: 

1. Publish articles that link to videos and vice versa. Say you're writing a gardening piece that recommends 10 steps. In the online article, which you submit to online gardening publications, you include a video link that says, 'Watch me carry out these ten steps.' Likewise, in the video, you might say, 'get these 10 steps in writing.' Each channel backs up and supports the other. 

2. Use compelling titles. The first potential hook for viewers is your title, and it can cause them to click or yawn, depending on your creativity. Quite often, 'how to' titles seem to work very well, for example: 'How to gain followers on YouTube in 10 easy steps.' 

3. Try to be visual. While a 'talking head' can be very successful, this is nevertheless a visual medium. Can you make it more interesting to look at? And in particular, can you ensure that the thumb-nail that shows as a preview looks fascinating? Although YouTube will select three frames arbitrarily from your video when you upload it, and ask which frame you might like to use as a preview-thumbnail, you can also choose to select your own photo as the thumbnail. Select something irresistible. 

4. Remember to entertain, as well as informing and educating. Your own personality, sense of humour and charisma can be as important as the information, perhaps even more so. 

5. Speak in a natural, conversational tone, looking straight into the camera lens, and occasionally smiling, the way you would when chatting with a friend. Address the audience directly, saying 'you' as much as possible: 'Have you ever been frustrated by this problem...?' 

6. Speak strong. Don't be afraid to champion a cause, take a stand and offer your opinion. Don't be obnoxious, lest even the people who agree with you tune out. But do be a strong leader championing a specific point of view. 

7. Keep it short. I try to ensure that most of my videos are under 4 minutes in duration, with the possible exception of videos of live speeches or seminars. These can be as long as you want. 

8. Incentivise them to come back. Within your video, be sure to offer more. This could be in the form of links to other videos, or it could simply mean asking them to subscribe. Ideally, you should be offering something of value or something entertaining in the next one, so that the perceived attractiveness of your videos is self-evident. 

9. Make sure your website also includes your videos. You will grow your viewership greatly by ensuring that all of your videos also appear on your site. This is a great way to ensure that even your older videos continue to get viewed anew, as people search your site and click on them. 

10. Recycle often. A single video post announced through a single channel may have little hope of being seen, even when the content is brilliant. So publish your videos across all of your social media channels: LinkedIn, FaceBook, Twitter, etc., and post them more than once. You might even consider creating a 'recycle schedule,' in which, after a certain amount of time, you publish old videos again (so long as their concepts are not outdated). Find excuses to re-publish videos. On Facebook, for instance, people like to re-post older items under the excuse 'Throwback Thursday.' That's good enough!  


In addition to these ten tips, I would recommend spending a little time online reading and learning about video blogs. There are many things you can do to raise your viewer numbers and ultimately become the greatest in your game. 


Douglas Kruger is a professional keynote speaker at conferences around the world. He specialises in disruptive innovation and expert-positioning, helping brands to become more memorable than their competitors’. See him in action, or sign up for his motivational newsletter, at Book him to present for your leadership team: email