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Rene Ritchie speaking on a panel at OpenSauce

Rene’s Top Five on YouTube: June 6, 2024 edition

Every week I scour YouTube, X/Twitter, Instagram, Threads, and Discord to find the most impactful stories for creators. This is them!

ui of the post feature on YouTube

🎤Events season has begun! Two weeks ago I was in Salt Lake City for Creator Day, one week from now I’ll be in San Francisco for OpenSauce, and the following week I’ll be in Anaheim for VidCon! OpenSauce is like… if Maker Faire had a baby with VidSummit and it came out looking like the Safety Third Podcast crew. It’s booth after booth of STEM and craft, from exoskeletons to creator panels. I’ll be moderating an Industry Day fireside chat with YouTube’s VP of Creator Product, Amjad Hanif and OpenSauce’s own William Osman, as well as doing an AMA for creators. There’ll be other YouTube folks around as well, and a ton of amazing creators and makers, so if you’re in the area, please do check it out! VidCon is, well… VidCon! Amjad and Kevin Allocca, YouTube’s Director of Culture and Trends will be keynoting the show with a special presentation on how passion pays off on YouTube. There’ll be a ton of other sessions as well, including one on the YouTube algorithm with Todd Beaupré, YouTube’s Senior Director of Growth and Discovery, and Gwen Miller, Senior Director of Growth at Mythical, and yours truly, for both the Creator and Industry tracks. Lots of fun creator stuff throughout the week as well so, if you’re at VidCon, don’t miss it!

📝 Posts are now rolling out to almost all channels on YouTube. Previously, a channel had to have access to Advanced Features to use posts, and that meant some channels that didn’t have access or lost access just couldn’t post posts. With this expansion, new and emerging channels should have a simpler, more consistent experience connecting with their communities through text, polls, images, and more. Check out the details on YouTube Creators!

💡The Inspiration tab in YouTube Analytics is rolling out a few new features, including Ideas, outlines, and breakouts. The Inspiration tab is the new, AI-infused version of the Research tab. The goal remains the same — to combat the tyranny of the blank page by giving creators glimpses into our own and platform-wide data that may not be immediately whole and perfect, but that will hopefully spark creativity and ideation so we get to those fully formed bangers faster. Ideas are topics your audience may find interesting but are currently underserved on YouTube. If any of those ideas are particularly appealing, you can generate an outline for them to help you get more fully on your way to a video. Breakouts represent outliers in your topic space that the audience has really been drawn to, and can give you even more ideas about what to make and how. Never to copy, of course, but to inspire you to create your own video that may go even further. Lots more info in this week’s Creator Insider Newsflash with Lauren!

🙋Q&A: “Does live streaming on YouTube hurt long form video performance?” Great question! The quick answer is no, not typically. The deeper answer is if you post a new long-form video and then start a live stream, your core audience may choose to watch you live rather than watch your video, figuring they can catch up on that later, after the stream. This can make it look like that long-form video is getting fewer views right out of the gate. After a week or two, it’ll probably end up around the same place, but if you want to avoid that initial split, you can go live first and then, towards the end, launch the new long-form video and encourage your live viewers to go watch it right away. If you premiere it, you can even continue the chat experience for them and make it as exciting and rewarding as possible.

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📈 Tip of the Week: Posts aren’t just for re-linking your videos. People on your page or in your feed have seen the thumbnail already, so just spamming the same thing, especially if it’s again and again, is just bad and boring for everyone. (Literally why creators sometimes complain video link posts don’t perform well). Here’s where “think like a viewer” comes in so clutch — you’ve already posted your video, what else can you do to provide value to the audience? Polls get high engagement because they’re not only interesting but easy to engage with. Pick something that pertains to the topic or personality of your channel, make the multiple choices as compelling as possible, and prompt the audience to dive into the comments to leave even deeper or just hotter takes. Pictures, including animated GIFs can be as eye-catching in the posts feed as thumbnails are on the Home page. Just twist things up. Offer some BTS, a tease, a laugh, something hella cool to look at or a magic moment to appreciate. Sure, you can add a video link to a pinned comment, but I’d really encourage creators not just to think of posts as more of the same, but more of the more! Don’t think of it as a way to get more views on a video, think of it as a way to build a stronger, richer bond with the audience.

🥰 Bonus: Community is YouTube’s superpower. It’s what elevates it from a content host to a cultural hotspot. And this last week has been a big one for several of the rich tapestry of communities that make up YouTube. Africa Month has just wrapped up. AAPI creators shared their motivations and traditions. Pride voices are celebrating, and sharing experiences from YouTube’s Creators in Residence program.

Enjoy and then get back to the contenting!

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