Low subscriber engagement rates can indicate that there’s a problem with the channel overall. In my case, I think I made one big critical mistake regarding the audience I’m targeting. I assumed when I started that most of them would follow the path I pursued instead of the path most creators tend to take after starting their channel.

Omar Correa wrote and asked this question,

“What’s a decent ratio for subscriber and non-subscribers views?”

Great question. Typically, you want to see around a 15 to 20 percent of your subscriber base actively engaged in each video that you publish. Perhaps you’ve seen here at Video Creators that is not the case and I’m going to share with you one of the biggest mistakes I’ve made so that you can avoid making this mistake on your own channel.

I’ve already answered your question, but what is this big mistake that has led to, here a Video Creators? See I got 100,000 plus subscribers and each video gets somewhere from subscribers, within the first week of publishing, it gets somewhere between around 5,000 views or so, maybe sometimes closer to 10. But even so, that is like five to 10 percent instead of the 15 to 20 percent. Why is this audience so disengaged and what mistake did I make? There’s two things. Number one is that– let’s just put this out there– is that for DIY channels, how-to type channels in general, the subscriber count is a lot lower because a lot of people subscribe because they found one video that’s really helpful but they’re not subscribed for entertainment purposes. That 15 to 20 percent of your subscriber based views on every video is typical for entertainment channels but on more informational base channels, people tend to subscribe to just see what comes through and then they watch a video if they feel like it’s relevant to them, something that they’re trying and they don’t watch every single video like they would an entertainment based channel. So that’s one thing that helped me feel a little bit better, right?

But here’s the big mistake that I made. OK. So my target audience are you guys as hobby YouTube Creators, right? And so my assumption was false going into this about understanding my audience. I assumed that most creators would start here. Start. This is my kid’s white board. And then they would just start their channel and they would kind of just grow like that over time because they would be persistent. And they would keep working at it, right?

And so I felt like I’m going to take a creator from here and I want to help them move all the way up this way as much as I can through each of the videos that I do. And so I thought this is a great idea because a lot of my subscribers are coming in at videos around this area where there’s how do I get YouTube views, how do I get more subscribers, what kind of camera equipment, a lot of that foundational type of stuff that beginner YouTube creators are looking for. And then I just assumed that they would still keep growing.

That is not the case because here’s the big mistake I made. I actually did not understand my target audience that well at all. It’s really important for you guys to do this because here’s what actually happens. So it doesn’t actually go like this. Most YouTube creators, it actually goes like this. They start and then they fall off. Some of them keep going and they go up like this. That’s the more accurate portrayal. So I get a lot of subscribers right here but then they figure out how hard it is to grow a channel. They started because they were super excited. They’re really inspired by their top favorite YouTuber and they said, wow if that person can do it then I can do it. If Shay Carl can be a popular blogger then I can be a popular blogger. If PewDiePie is that way on gaming, I should be able, you know? So they start that way and they go up and they subscribe to Video Creators around here. And then they realize how hard it is and then they just drop off completely. A much smaller percentage of creators actually push through this dip down here in order to get back. So the audience that I actually keep, which my understanding, remember, I thought it was going to go like this. So there are some of you here and those who like the 5,000 and 1,000 of you guys who are watching almost every video, you are right here but it’s a much smaller percentage than I thought it was.

So here’s what I need to do. Here’s what I’m learning from this as I evaluate the target audience and what’s actually happening with the creator’s journey on the YouTube channel is that I need to either stick to two different types of content. I need to either stick right here, the very beginning of the stage, which is people like how to get more views, how to get more subscribers, like the really foundational stuff. And I feel like YouTube Creator Academy really serves that really well. YouTube’s own channel that shows creators and a lot of stuff they’re doing. I think that it fits here really well.

There’s not a whole lot right here, which is kind of more like the business side of YouTube. People who have gone past this, they’ve pushed through this dip, and now they’re right here, their growing channel. And now they want to turn it into their full time income, they want to turn this into their business. They want to do something bigger like that. And I don’t think there’s too many people targeting that group nearly as well. Now, to be fair, this is a much smaller group of people than right here. So if I wanted to grow a really big channel, I should focus right here. Not by really big but I mean like big relative to this one, you know?

So that’s what I need to do. Or what I need to do is I need to help creators figure out how to bridge this gap. How to motivate them, how to you inspire them, how to help them push through this dip so they don’t subscribe because they’re really excited and they can figure out how hard it is and then they stop watching Video Creators, my channel, and other content like it because they realize this is a lot more work and a lot harder than it seems. And so they’re still active, they’re still subscribed to my channel, they don’t unsubscribe, but they’re not actively watching content because it’s not as much interest to them anymore because they’re kind of bottomed out and not as excited about it as they used to.

So what I am learning is that it is really important to understand your target audience. Who is it that your channel’s targeting? Who is it that your channel is going after? So you don’t make these types of assumptions that I made in the very beginning and mistakes that now lead to this on my channel. So it is kind of the nature of the genre of channel that I’m in. But I don’t feel like I want to be content with that and just say oh well that’s just how it goes. I want to figure out how to solve this problem by either focusing here, here, or figuring out how to go across here. And I’m going to be experimenting with a lot of different stuff coming up here over the next few months on this channel just to kind of see what you guys respond to, what’s really helpful and valuable to you guys, where I can offer the most value, and all that stuff to try to figure out really how to do this.

So here’s what I want to hear from you guys in the comments below. One, what do you think about all this? Because you are creators, like you are these people. But two, I want to hear how you understand your target audience. What helps you understand them so that when you craft your content, you can serve them as good as possible so that they stay engaged to your channel? The other thing they think about all this guys– and this applies in any genre channel and myself included, right now, I feel like I’m in the middle of this phase– is that most channels when they get to around here or maybe a little past here, I don’t know somewhere along there, they need to start reinventing themselves. There’s no top YouTube channel that exists that’s the same now as it was when it started, that’s even the same now as it was maybe a year or two years ago. Each of these channels has to keep reinventing themselves, experimenting with new things. Otherwise, they become really stagnant. They become stale. Their subscriber base becomes disinterested and they become bored with the content that they’re making, right?

So I am a little bit scared, to be honest with you, to try to start reinventing Video Creators with 100,000 subscribers and millions of views coming in. That’s a big thing. So if you’re a small channel, that is the perfect time to experiment. Get into a rhythm. I feel like I did that but every channel when they get up and start growing, they need to start reinventing themselves and risk becoming in irrelevant. Yeah .

So again, I’m looking forward to hearing all your feedback both for this channel here at Video Creators and also what this helps you think through in your own channel. Let me know if you like experimenting with a white board– I stole this from my kids– experimenting with a new type of format. Let me know what you guys think of this also.