A little over a year ago, YouTube released “shorts.” Since then, there has been a lot of experimenting with it – YouTube included, in regards to how it effects their algorithm. Today we want to talk about not everything, but almost everything you need to know to have a successful YouTube Shorts Strategy.

Creator Spotlight

But first, I want to introduce you to Nina. Her channel, , consists of mostly livestreams of exercises for people who have Parkinson’s Disease. Before Nina started Video Labs, she felt like she had a pretty popular channel for her niche. But going through the course, she learned so much about analytics and directing her thumbnails and titles to her target audience. Now, her channel has grown from 52k views a month to 75k views a month. She is reaching more people and changing move lives which is what we are all about.

If you are curious how we might be able to help you with your channel, hop into a with us and we would love to see if we can help you where you are at.

Right Tool for the Right Job

People often ask me, “Should I start a YouTube channel?” And my answer is always, “I don’t know. Why would you want to?” Building a YouTube channel should not be a goal in itself. YouTube is a tool to accomplish a goal (spread a message, makes sales, teach others, etc). I think of shorts in the same way. It’s a tool to accomplish a certain goal. And since everyone has different goals, it will not be a helpful tool for everyone.

But first let’s start at the top. Here are some of the common questions people have about shorts.

Should I Create a Separate Channel for Shorts?

No. We have different tools for different jobs, right? Well, the main job of shorts is to draw new viewers into your channel. To start a completely separate channel for shorts misses the point. As long as it is serving the same audience, keep it on the same channel.

Now, this isn’t a crazy question. There was a time when this made sense. YouTube themselves didn’t realize the impact it would have on the recommendation system. If you only watched shorts, that’s all that would be recommended. So making a channel only of shorts made total sense. But Youtube has been working very hard over this last year to make it so that one creator can have all different types of content live in one space and serve their audience properly. So this is no longer a good idea.

How many shorts Should a Channel Post?

First of all, it’s important to understand that there are multiple discoverability systems on YouTube: One for shorts and one for your main videos. So it’s ok to post several different shorts at a time, even though you wouldn’t do this with your main videos.

There’s really no limit to the number of shorts you should post, but going from long form content to shorts is quite different and might feel awkward. So easing in is often less overwhelming and allows you to find your rhythm.

But you have to look at your overall content strategy. Don’t completely stop your videos and start doing shorts. Add shorts to your weekly posting schedule to help with discoverability, but keep going with your .

What are Shorts Good For?

If they are the right tool for certain goals, what are those goals that they help with?

Discoverability is a huge one. They are less than a minute and it’s so easy for people to watch several of them in a row. And it’s a lot less intimidating for a viewer to invest 45 seconds into a person they don’t know rather than to sit and watch a full video. If someone likes you, there’s a good chance they’ll go to your channel, watch more content and subscribe so they can see you again.

It’s also a great way for channels to experiment with new things. They don’t take nearly as much time to make so it’s easy to have some fun and try something different without the risk of investing a lot of time and energy. And it doesn’t alienate the people who like what you do regularly. People seem to have different expectations for shorts. Use that to your advantage.

And since they are a smaller time investment, it can allow you to stay in front of your audience more often. If you are a channel that can really only publish once a month because producing them takes so much time, this is a great tool to post more often and keep your viewers engaged in between your regular videos.

What are They Not Good For?

To discover new content with shorts, viewers just swipe up. They aren’t choosing what they see. Nothing is drawing them in. YouTube is just feeding the viewer what they think they want to see. For a normal video, a viewer is making a choice of who they want to spend time with. Because of that, they are more invested, they spend more time with you and there is more of an emotional connection.

Because of this shorts are not great for growing loyal fans or sales. They are so short and punchy that it’s very hard to actually get a deep personal connection. They are very “snackable,” but since they aren’t spending much quality time with you, it’s hard to get all of those same viewers to watch your long-form content, like a die-hard fan.

Plus, views and subs doesn’t mean that people will actually buy from you. Inflating your numbers with shorts is great, but it doesn’t mean it will make a huge impact on your sales. If sales is your goal, then just use shorts for discoverability. Get people to know your brand and get the word out there, but I wouldn’t expect to make a ton of sales from a 1 minute video. It can happen, but it’s not the norm.

Tips for Creating Shorts that Perform Well

First of all, get right into it. With 60 seconds max, you have no time for an intro. You can have a hook, but a micro-hook. Also, experiment with the length! Try some 15-20 seconds. Then, try some that are 40 seconds and see the difference.

If you can loop it so that your end flows right back into your beginning, do it. It’s not uncommon for people to watch it over and over when there is a flawless loop.

Titles still matter. Not for click-ability, but people can still search for shorts and see the title to build intrigue.

Don’t over produce them. People are looking for simple. Peter McKinnon posted a video called, “” In this video, he interviews his friend who is crushing it on TikTok and it’s so interesting to see the differences between producing long-form and short-form content.

Power Tip

Today we want to introduce you to a feature on the YouTube App. With this feature that you’ve already posted. Go to one of your own videos and tap the “create” or “remix” button below your video and you can create a short from that video. The nice thing about this is that there will be a link where people can click to see the full length version of that video to see the full context.

Have comments, reactions, questions about all of this or just want to say hi? for us and we may use it in an upcoming podcast episode. Until then…

Keep Changing Lives!

Tim Schmoyer

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