Everybody who gets into YouTube wants to monetize their channels ASAP. Thus 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 watch hours is a benchmark virtually every YouTuber has.
So how do you get 1,000 subscribers as quickly as possible? Let’s get right into it!
Focus on Viewer Retention (Not Post Frequency)
It’s entirely possible to have millions of subscribers posting only once per month. I’ve also seen many YouTubers post daily and only end up with hundreds of subs. What’s the difference between these two creators?
Channels with high viewer retention will grow, and channels with low retention will not. It’s as simple as that. Your channel won’t succeed if your YouTube viewer retention graphs look like below (or worse).
This means that the key to growth is making better YouTube videos. “Better” is not some subjective measurement. Better means more people (aim for 50%) sticking around until the end of your video. No more, no less.
How do you achieve this? I wrote an entire post on making better videos without any money. The gist is that you need to learn how to edit your videos to cut dead air, add multimedia, tell better stories, etc.
It’s not easy. But, I promise that your channel will skyrocket if you learn these skills!
Create Videos Consistently
Wait, didn’t I just say that YouTube post frequency didn’t matter? I did, but you’ll have a few advantages if you publish consistently.
- Practice: The more videos you make, the better you’ll get at making videos (just don’t burn yourself out).
- Feedback: The more feedback you get (in terms of retention graphs and user comments), the better you’ll get at making videos.
- More Content: The more content you have, the more chances you have for a video to get picked up by the YouTube algorithm and get you to 1,000 subs almost overnight.
Now don’t hear what I’m not saying. Frequency to“appease the algorithm” is a terrible idea. It’s just good to attempt to have a content schedule because it’s a habit that will drive success.
The nice thing about click-through-rate on YouTube is that you can analyze it, then change underperforming titles/thumbnails after the fact.
To see the click-through rate of your videos, Go to your YouTube Creator Studio -> Click Analytics -> Click See More -> Set Secondary Dimension to Click-Through-Rate.
I highly suggest going through this list every few months and improving the title and thumbnails of underperforming videos. Particularly if those videos have good retention graphs! This is a straightforward way to grow your channel.
Don’t (Overly) Target Search
I was tempted to treat YouTube like blogging when I started out. The idea is that you’d find large keywords with awful videos and make a better video on that topic.
And while you can find success doing this, it’s a mistake for 3 reasons.
- YouTube’s recommendation engine is where the BIG traffic is (It dwarfs keywords).
- People are more likely to subscribe to interest pieces.
- The subscribers you get from interest pieces will get you more passionate subscribers.
I’m not saying to avoid targeting keywords (You can get a lot of traffic this way). I’m saying that focusing on YouTube’s recommendation algorithm is the better play.
Take Advantage of Trends
Bloggers lost their collective minds when GPT-3 got released. They were desperate to test if artificial intelligence could write an entire blog post for them (Hint: it can’t).
Regardless, small creators saw huge traffic spikes when posting about the trend!
Consider dropping whatever you’re doing to jump onto a trend in your niche. Being early on a trend can get your channel a lot more traffic than you’re used to.
Sell Your Related Videos
Do you know what’s better for viewer retention than getting your viewers to watch your whole video?
If they watch a 2nd video of yours, and then a 3rd.
If there’s a 3rd killer metric for growing on YouTube, it’s your viewers binge-watching your other videos. So if you have related posts to your current video, be sure to take a second and sell them to your audience.
Conclusion: How Long Does It Take To Get 1,000 Subscribers?
Most new creators take years and sometimes hundreds of videos to reach 1,000 subscribers.
That said, it doesn’t have to take that long. If you can get your viewer retention and click-through rate to a high enough number, you’ll get there in a few months. The problem most creators have is that they rarely make videos with a high retention rate.
Figure out how to keep your viewers on the YouTube platform, and YouTube will reward you.