It’s as clear as the sun is bright – YouTube is out for world domination.
This platform is the world’s second-largest search engine. It’s also the second most visited website, right after Google. There are more than 2 billion users worldwide and 1 billion hours of videos are played on YouTube every day. Every minute, content creators upload 500 hours of video to YouTube.
It’s no wonder that so many people are turning to YouTube for entertainment. Furthermore, more and more people are starting a YouTube channel in the hopes of making money and a legitimate profession out of it. However, to do that, your channel needs to be successful. It could take months or even years until that happens – and you’ll have to make excellent content in the meantime.
You’ll also have to nail your Search Engine Optimization (SEO) techniques and make sure that you’re giving the people and the algorithms what they want.
Because there’s so much content on YouTube, they developed smart algorithms that help them navigate in the ocean of content. These algorithms can listen to what you’re saying and watch your videos and what you’re showing in them. Therefore, what you’re saying and doing in your video will determine your channel’s success.
In this blog post, we’ll explain why what you’re saying, doing and showing in your YouTube video can make all the difference.
How Do Users Discover Content On YouTube?
YouTube allows users to discover content on the platform in three main places: The first place is the Home page. Then there’s the Suggested Videos column. Finally, there’s the Search Engine Results Page (SERP). These three places present your thumbnails and titles to potential viewers.
Ranking highly in these three places is no easy task. However, it is very possible, even if you don’t have millions of subscribers and followers.
If you want to rank on the top of YouTube’s discovery pages, you need to remember that it is all about relevancy. Another important thing you have to notice is how you’re delivering the content to your audience. You want to be animated and interesting. Being relevant won’t help you much if your delivery is off.
How Does YouTube Choose Which Video To Promote?
YouTube’s algorithms (yes, plural!) use machine learning and deep learning neural networks in their recommendation and content suggestion systems.
These algorithms and systems are responsible for helping more than 2 billion users discover personalized content. This might sound like an easy task. After all, these are machines we’re talking about. But when the algorithms are constantly choosing from a massive and ever-growing pool of videos, it can be quite a challenge.
The algorithms’ primary function is to provide users with content that they’ll want to watch.
They’re doing this to make sure that users spend even more time on the platform than they normally would. If you’re wondering how they do it, the answer is simple: they look at the audience as well as at the content.
For each unique viewer, the algorithms look at various points:
- they observe what the user’s Watch History – what the user has watched before.
- They can also look at Session Length – how much time the user spent watching videos;
- And User Preference – what they choose not to watch.
- The algorithms know everything.
As far as content goes, the algorithms look at meta-tags such as video titles, thumbnails and descriptions and how platform users seem to enjoy them:
- They’re looking at Average Watch Time – how much of the videos the users watch.
- Also, they can see if the viewers are interacting with the content. Friendly reminder: on YouTube, users interact with content by liking and disliking videos as well as commenting on them.
- Furthermore, the algorithms also take what creators put in the video’s meta-tags: the descriptions, titles, and thumbnails. Then, they use it to compare and contrast with the actual video’s content to determine relevancy.
- Finally, the algorithms look at your video’s CTR (Click Through Rate). This is determined by how many times users clicked on your video after looking at your video’s thumbnail. Your videos CTR is important because it shows the algorithms of how engaging your thumbnail and titles are, and your video’s CTR is one of the main factors responsible for promoting your content across the platform.
YouTube’s Algorithms Can Understand Your Videos Better Than You Ever Imagined
YouTube’s algorithms can “break down” key components of your video and observe each one carefully, to determine how relevant and engaging your content is. The algorithms can now understand the context, as well as the video meta-tags, and they will cross-reference what you say and show in your video with what you wrote down in your video meta-tags (title, description, tags, and thumbnail).
YouTube’s algorithms can now scan, detect and identify every object they can “see” in your video. They can also “listen” to your video and understand what you’re saying and what your video topic is all about. Furthermore, the algorithms use advanced NLP (Natural Language Processing) technology to use content segmentation and categories classification. Thus, the algorithms are able to “match” user searches and content preferences to your videos and recommend your videos based on content the user watched previously.
Since the algorithms “listen” to what you’re saying in the video, using TuBeast’s Advanced Topic Research tool is crucial to find the right words and phrases to say in your video for better exposure. This tool scans all the top ranking videos for a specific keyword and analyzes which words were said in them. It does so based on the assumption that the algorithms found them relevant to the video’s topic.
Using the right keywords (and actually saying them!) in your video will increase your exposure tremendously:
You will trigger the YouTube content classification algorithm by utilizing related and highly correlated keywords/phrases to your video’s main topic. These keywords are also called LSI (Latent Semantic Indexing) keywords, and are terms that are closely linked to your target keyword. This means that if you have a video about “running”, you’ll also want to add the words “cardio”, “shoes” and “distance” into the mix.
The algorithms also take what you put in your meta-tags and use it to compare and contrast it with the video’s actual content and what you’re saying and displaying in your video scenes/frames in order to determine the meta-tags’ relevancy to your video content. This enables them to not only make sure that you’re not misleading your viewers, but it also helps them decide which videos they should rank higher in the search engine results page and of course to better segment your video to the right audience, which brings us to the next topic –
Your Video Tags Don’t Matter As Much Anymore. Period.
While they are beneficial to your video discoverability on the Search Engine Results Page and on the suggested videos column, your video success is independent of which tags you’ve chosen for your video. Using tags is great for helping the algorithms understand what your video is about. But, since YouTube’s algorithms scan and categorize content in other (and much more accurate and sophisticated) ways, such as those we mentioned previously in this blog post – tags just aren’t as important as they used to be!
What does matter, though, is what you say and show in your video and how it relates to your video meta-tags.
For example, let’s assume you’re making a video about Disneyland.
You’ve perfected your meta-tags. You’ve even put a shot of the Disney castle in your thumbnail and wrote “Disneyland” in big, bold letters!
If you’re not talking about Disneyland and specifically mentioning it in your video or showing rides and other Disney related things and keywords, the algorithm will determine that your video’s content relevancy is low. In other words, the algorithms will compare the title, description, tags and your video thumbnail to what you’re actually saying and showing in your video. If the algorithms find that there’s no or low correlation between these factors, they won’t promote your video to users on the platform.
So, To Make Your YouTube Videos Go Viral, You Need More Than Great Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Skills.
You also need to make sure your content is highly relevant to your video meta-tags with what you’re saying. When you’re showing and saying the right things at the right time, the algorithms pick up on it and promote your video to wider audiences because it’s so highly relevant. Of course, none of this matters if you don’t deliver your video in a fun, interesting manner. Doing so will help you keep your audience around watching your video for a long time.
This is crucial since Audience Retention is one of the most important parameters when it comes to promoting your video inside YouTube’s platform.