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YouTube Creator Liasion Rene Ritchie with Creator Alan Chikin Chow

Rene’s Top Five on YouTube: January 25, 2024 Edition

These are the top 5 things I saw this week.

Coffee down, keyboard up! (For me! Reverse for you!) It’s time once again for your friendly neighborhood YouTube Creator Liaison — whose job it is to help YouTube better understand creators and creators better understand YouTube! — to spelunk may way across the net of inters and highlight the most important news and info of the week. So let’s go!

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🤯 Mythbusters: We’re kicking off a new season of Mythbuster Shorts, where I try and clarify, confirm, or just full on bust any of the myriad of myths, misconceptions, and plain old (and new!) questions any and all of you creators have about making content on YouTube. And I’d all-caps LOVE to answer YOUR question. Yes, you. No, there’s no one behind you, stop turning…your question! So hit up the threads on YouTube, Threads, or X/Twitter and let me know what you want to know!

💏 Between Two Creators: Yes it’s back, back again, Between Two* Creators is back, tell a friend! This is one of my favorite series because it provides unique insights into the personalities and strategies of some of YouTube’s most interesting creators. And I asterisked the Two there because, for the first installment of 2024, there are actually three creators — Allan Chikin Chow and the Merrel Twins! You can read and watch the whole thing right here on the YouTube Blog. (And while you’re there, don’t miss YouTube’s VP of engineering, Scott Silver's ode to code!)

✂️ Trim & Cut: Maybe you made a mistake and left something in your video that really should have been left out. Maybe you noticed an overly long intro or bad joke squashed or killed your retention. Maybe some news you highlighted has since timed out. Maybe you’re just experimenting with different hooks or promos. Whatever the reason, even after you’ve published a video and it’s gotten viewed and liked and commented on, you can still make and revert changes — right in the video editor in YouTube Studio! Check out YouTube Creators hot fresh Trim & Cut video for more.

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🙋 Q&A: “What's a good CTR to aim for?” The only real, honest answer to this is — better than your last video. CTR stands for ‘click through rate’. In other words, when viewers are presented with your video (impressions), the percentage of time they choose your video rather than a different one. (If 12 out of 100 viewers click on your video, your CTR will be 12%). But that number is actually highly relative and contextual. When your video first goes live and is presented to 100 of your super fans, maybe 20 click on it. So, 20%. But then the recommendation system puts it in front of 1,000,000 viewers and only 20,000 click. That’s 2%. What’s a better CTR, 20% of 100 impressions or 2% of a million? Once you’ve started publishing regularly, take not of what your typical CTR is for the first few hours, first few days, and first few weeks. Take special note of the higher performers and lowest performers. Then, when you publish new videos, compare against those numbers and see if you can tweak your thumbnails and titles to get a little better at each point, each time.

📈 Tip of the Week: Some creators spend a lot of time stressing over notifications. We tell viewers to smash that subscribe button and turn the bell to ‘all’. We panic when a sub tells us they didn’t get a notification. It’s… a lot. And the truth is, it might be too much at times. But how would creators know? Well, you can go into YouTube Studio, click on Analytics, and look at the Audience tab. There you’ll see what percentage of subscribers have the bell set to ‘all’ (13.5 percent on my personal channel). But also, what percentage have since turned off notifications for the YouTube app (7.5% for me). That means, at some point, for some reason, they decided they didn’t want any more notifications from any channel. RIP. You can also go into Advanced Mode, Traffic Sources, and see how many subs actually click through from the notification (2% for me). The truth is, we live in a world where people get so many notifications they tune them out or turn them off, operating systems stack them and deliver them quietly, and we’re often busy when they come in anyway, and it’s just much more convenient to open YouTube on our own schedule and pick videos from our Home page. Which is why Browse traffic is typically the biggest traffic source for most channels, by far. So don’t not worry about notifications, just understand the context, weigh the impact, and budget your worry proportionately and accordingly. (And next time, maybe instead of telling viewers to smash that button and bell, recommend a really good follow up video of yours for them to watch immediately next and get those recommendations going!)