Recently I was able to catch up with Muaaz Shakeel after our original interview to ask him a few more questions about YouTube growth. He was gracious enough to give some detailed advice that any aspiring YouTuber can take advantage of!
Having seen growth in the tens of thousands in less than two years, Muaaz is one of the few YouTubers qualified to discuss rapid strategic growth in the current YouTube climate.
Is it too late to become a successful content creator on YouTube?
I see this question almost daily. What we need to think about is that this platform is just a little over a decade old. New people are joining daily attempting to build a presence. There is literally no better time to jump into content creation than now, and I mean literally now. There are hundreds if not thousands of people making their YouTube accounts everyday hoping to be the next big thing. It's only going to get harder to become a content creator as the community becomes more saturated. No, it's not too late, but who knows what will happen in the next decade. Jump on board now before it's too late so you won’t end up asking yourself “What if?” later in life.
Many new YouTubers comment "Sub4Sub" in order to gain subscribers and build their fan-base. Do you feel that is effective?
This is a tactic where you subscribe to some random user and they subscribe back to you so that you both grow by one additional subscriber. Doing that multiple times will definitely add up and you can easily reach certain milestones while doing so, but the problem is that people who subscribe to you just so that you will subscribe to them are never going to watch your videos. You will find yourself with a large amount of inactive subscribers.
It can be cool to say "I have 1,000 subscribers on YouTube," but does that really matter when more than ninety percent of them are inactive? No brands will want to work with you if you have thousands of subscribers but no engagement on your videos.
This is a mistake I see far too many people make. You need to focus on creating content that encourages engagement and viewership rather than just trying to get one more subscriber that won’t watch your videos.
Clickbait seems to influence the growth of many content creators in both good and bad ways, why do you feel that is?
This is a seriously controversial subject. Since my channel focuses on tech tutorials and advice videos on how to grow your YouTube channel, clickbait would not work as well for me in comparison to someone who does daily vlogs. The closest form of clickbait that I use is making sure my thumbnails are “clickable.” This means that I make sure each thumbnail is vibrant by using a variety of colors that make you feel enticed to click on it. By doing this, my thumbnails stand out in the search results next to everyone else's plain and dull thumbnails. That is how I got traction on my channel. Ever since I started doing that with all of my thumbnails, I'm happy to say that I've found nothing but success.
My tip for someone who plans on “clickbaiting” is that you still deliver quality content once the viewer clicks on your video. If you don't then you're just asking for dislikes.
You get a high level of engagement for a channel your size! How have you developed that on your channel?
It's crazy how many likes and comments I get on my videos on a day-to-day basis. I feel like the best practice for gaining that engagement is consistency. I know every YouTuber says that, but honestly the reason we say it is because it's true.
Put yourself in the position of your viewers. If your favorite YouTuber simply disappeared for several weeks after every upload, you would eventually get tired of waiting and go find someone else to watch who is uploading on a schedule that you are able to follow. I upload a video every single Sunday and I feel like everyone should follow some type of schedule whether that's daily, bi-daily, once a week, or really anything that your audience can get used to. If your viewers know what to expect from your channel, you build a trustworthy connection when you actually deliver on that content. There is always someone else out there ready to take your spot, so make use of your channel and go 110%. Otherwise, you might just fall into the shadows of YouTube.
SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is a skill that many content creators ignore. What are your tips on taking advantage of YouTube SEO?
YouTube’s algorithm does well ranking the best videos but I agree, not enough content creators know how to get their videos to rank through SEO. Titles, Descriptions, and Tags are three of the primary tools we need to take advantage of as content creators. Each of your videos has a keyword to describe it. Make sure that key word is stated multiple times in a fluid manner. Don't spam it all over your description. That can result in a strike or termination from YouTube. You want to craft flowing sentences that describe your video and incorporate your keyword in every other sentence.
As for your tags, these are generally the potential searches that you would prefer to show up under. Be sure to use all 500 characters available or at least close to it when creating your tags. It can only help you to use all the space you’re given. Think about every potential way someone might search for your video and implement it in your tags.
For example, if I upload a tutorial video on recording your computer screen I might use:
How To Record Your Computer Screen, How To Make Videos On Your Computer, How To Capture Your PC Screen, Make Videos Of Your PC Screen, How Can I Record My PC
Those are all potential titles that your average person may search to find a video relating to the video I'm uploading. That means the chances of my videos being ranked and seen by the searcher are much higher.