As creators, sometimes we feel like we are doing everything right, but just can’t seem to get our channel to grow. (Been there? I know I have.) Well, what if I told you there might be somethings holding you back, that you’re not even aware of? Today we’re going to uncover some of the most common pitfalls we see every day with creators and teach you what you can do to overcome them.

Now I want to start by saying that if you have made these mistakes, don’t feel bad. Creators of all sizes are going down these wrong paths. Sometimes that is because they have wrong or outdated information and sometimes it’s just because they have the wrong focus. Don’t tell yourself that you are failing. Self talk is important. The last thing I want is for you to feel discouraged. Please know that I want you to succeed and there is a way to reroute yourself and get on the right path to success.

Goal-Less Channels

One of the common problems we see is creators that do not have a clear goal in mind for their channel. If you don’t know where you are going, how will you know how to get there? Failing to plan is planning to fail, right? I know we don’t like to hear this, but it really is true. We would all prefer to do one thing and find success in one video, but it really isn’t that easy.

You must have a strategy for your channel and all of this starts with a solid goal. Having a giant mountain to climb can be overwhelming, but if you have a large goal and then handholds along the way that will bring you to that goal it is less overwhelming, far more exciting, and easier to see your progress as you climb.

As you plan for this goal on for your channel, I would encourage you to not choose numeric goals. Subscriber numbers or dollar amounts are more of a result of a goal than a an actual goal in themselves. It’s okay to want those things, but it’s a little outside of your control. Instead, focus on what you can control that will lead to that. Good goals could be to focus on better titles and thumbnails, better hooks, better storytelling, better calls to action or building a strong community. These things will lead towards the numeric goals as a result.

Multiple Calls to Action

If you tell your audience to do everything, they will do nothing. Telling your audience to like, comment, subscribe, watch your next video and go to your sales page will lead them to decision fatigue and they will not do anything at all. It is vital for you to choose one focus for your video and lead your viewer to that call to action. If your goal of your next video is just to get a sale, focus on why your viewer needs this in your video. Then, show them how you can help and where to go to purchase. If your next video is to get more watch time, produce a great video and then at the end, take 20 seconds and tell them why this next video will be even better or help them even more.

If you want to see if your end screen calls to action are successful, check your “Clicks per endscreen elements shown” in your analytics. To see it go to Analytics – Advanced – Click the blue plus sign and add this metric. This will be very eyeopening for you. I would highly recommend just adding one element to give your viewer a clear destination to go instead of a decision to make. And just so you don’t beat yourself up, getting to the double digits on this metric means you are doing really well.

Relying on AI

AI is advancing everyday and there are some amazing tools that AI has. HOWEVER, it needs to stay a tool in your tool belt, not replace your creative output. Remeber, you are a human trying to reach humans. You need to keep it that way if you want to find success with your channel.

We worked with a channel recently that was uploading 100 videos a day completely done by AI. We had a good conversation about quality over quantity. Tons of content is not doing you any good if no one is connecting to it. It’s so hard to get your audience to actually connect to a channel where there is no human to connect to.

But there are good things that AI can do! vidIQ has some amazing AI tools that can look at your content and show you some things you may be missing. It can help you come up with titles and generate content ideas and even help coach you. But these tools are trying to help you get your brain going when you are looking at a blank canvas – not paint the picture for you.

Packaging for YouTube

YouTube really is different than other platforms. Your video can be amazing, but if you don’t have a good thumbnail, no one is going to see it. We try not to judge a book by it’s cover, but it’s really hard no too! Art makes you feel something – even if it’s just your channel art. Your images are your biggest asset to draw attention.

Your thumbnail is your front page, your magazine cover. Magazines have to get the person walking by to stop and grab it off the rack. In the same way, your thumbnail is what will get the scroller to click on your video. Don’t undervalue this. Make sure your image in scaled up large, as well as your text, without making it busy or crowded. Tell the best visual story you can first, and then add up to 3 words of text if you need it.

The way you deliver your content is also part of your packaging. Is it packaged for a YouTube viewer? On YouTube, getting the click is not enough. You need to keep capturing their attention. If you drew people in with a car on fire in your thumbnail, you need to show that car in the opening seconds of your video. You can then back up and lead into the story, but let them know immediately that they’re in the right place. Think of your hook like a movie trailer. Tease some of the intense elements of the story, layer it with music, leave your viewers with some cliffhangers that make them want to keep watching for the whole video.

Then, remember this is a visual platform. Show instead of tell wherever you can throughout your video. Lean into the visual storytelling as much as you can. It helps keep your viewer engaged and keeps them watching more.

Power Tip

Be on the lookout for “Dream Screen.” This is an AI feature for shorts that YouTube is going to release later this year. It is similar to a greenscreen for shorts, but it is generated by AI. With this technology, you will be able to type a prompt that you would like for your background and it will fill it in for you. And these prompts do not need to be realistic. They can be “fantastical” such as an underwater scene with swimming elephants. I’m not sure why anyone would want that. But hey, if you do, it’s about to be possible! This really makes an even lower entry barrier for shorts and allows visual storytelling to be even easier.

Keep Changing Lives!

Tim Schmoyer

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