called the sequel technique. I recently used the sequel
technique to get 25,339 views on one of my YouTube videos in about two weeks.
that blew my mind. I was looking at where most
of my YouTube views came from. And even though I rank in
the top three on YouTube for popular keywords like video SEO, keyword research, and SEO tutorial, I notice that most of my views didn’t come from YouTube search.
views came from search, but 41% came from suggested video.
less than three weeks.
Starting with step number one
over and watch your video. The question is, how do you find a popular video in your niche? Here are two simple
strategies that work great. First, use a YouTube search. All you need to do is search for a keyword that describes the video you wanna make.
video in the search results that already has lots of views. For example, when I searched
for improve Google rankings, I noticed that this video had
over 200,000 views, bingo. You could also look at your competitor’s most popular videos. Just head over to their
channel, and hit videos. Then, sort by most popular. And just like that, you get a list of their top-performing videos.
Next, it’s time for step number two
something bigger and better. Why is this important? Well, awhile back, YouTube published a little known research paper called, Deep Neural Networks for
YouTube Recommendations. And this paper outlined how
suggested video probably works. As it turns out, YouTube focuses on something called expected watch time. Expected watch time is simple. It’s YouTube’s best guess
of how much time someone will spend watching your
video after they click on it. And needless to say,
YouTube promotes videos that keep people on YouTube. So, the higher your expected
watch time, the better.
coffee, let’s call it video A. And YouTube starts to show your video in the suggested video sidebar. Well, when people click
over to your video, they only watch it for
30 seconds, on average. YouTube knows that when someone clicks over to your video
as a suggested video, it’s only gonna result in
30 seconds of watch time. So, that video has an expected
watch time of 30 seconds.
watch time of two minutes, four times more than video A. And because video B has a
higher expected watch time, YouTube’s gonna promote it in the suggested video sidebar like crazy. So, as you can see, to show
up as a suggested video, your video needs to keep people watching. And to keep people watching,
your video needs to be awesome.
of your video is huge. In fact, YouTube says that if you lose someone’s interest in
the first 15 seconds, they’re gonna click away
and watch something else. Boring, next. But if you grab their attention
in this 15-second window, they’ll stick around.
create an awesome video intro? An intro that’s even better than the video you found in step one. I’ll explain with an example. Again, here’s the video that I found in the first step from this process. This intro is actually pretty good, but I knew that I could
do a little bit better. So, for my sequel, I started my video off with something that would
grab people’s attention. Specifically, I let people
know that I was gonna show them how to increase
their Google rankings fast. I also showed people real-life proof that my approach works. And because my intro
grabs people’s attention, they keep watching.
a million YouTube videos to understand how YouTube’s
search engine worked. And we found that long
videos crush short videos. Even though of study
focused on YouTube’s search, the message is clear. YouTube promotes videos
that keep people on YouTube, and longer videos do that best. Plus, longer videos tend to have a higher expected watch time. For example, let’s say that your video is three minutes long. Well, even if people
watch 100% of your video, which will never happen, your
expected watch time will be, at most, three minutes. But let’s say that your
video is 10 minutes. Even if people only
watch half of your video, your expected watch time
is gonna be five minutes.
was a little bit longer at 12 minutes, nine seconds. Finally, it’s time to add
pattern interrupts to your video. Pattern interrupts are super powerful. In fact, I found that pattern interrupts can dramatically increase your videos, audience retention, and watch time.
video to change things up. A pattern interrupt can be a visual, a camera angle change, a joke, music, basically anything that’s different than the rest of your video. For example, the video I
found in the first step didn’t use a lot of pattern interrupts. It was pretty much a
static screen recording. So, for my sequel, I used dozens of pattern interrupts.
optimize a YouTube video, you optimize it for SEO. But with the sequel technique, you’re not trying to
rank in YouTube search. If you do, great, that’s a bonus. But it’s not the main goal. The main goal is to show up as a suggested video next to a popular video.
So, how you optimize your video for the suggested video?
It’s simple, copy your competitor’s keywords. In fact, YouTube’s Creator Academy says that when your video’s metadata matches the video someone’s watching, you’re more likely to show
up as a suggested video. With that, here’s exactly how to optimize your video for suggested video. First, say your keyword in
your video, this is a big one. You’ve probably noticed that YouTube can understand what you say in your video. It’s not perfect, but in my experience, they understand about 90 to 95% of the words you say in a given video. And when YouTube hears your
target keyword in your video, it helps them understand that your video is about that topic. For example, I noticed that this video used the keyword to improve your Google rankings in the title and description.
So, I made sure to say that exact phrase in my video. Next, you wanna use that same keyword, or a variation of it, in your title. For example, you can see that my video title contains the keyword higher Google rankings, which is a variation of improving Google rankings.
Now that you’ve optimized your title, it’s time to optimize your description. Specifically, you wanna check out your competitor’s description, and use the same keywords they use. For example, I noticed that
my competitor’s description used the terms SEO,
improve Google rankings, and search engine.
So, I sprinkled those same keywords into my video description. Finally, copy your competitor’s tags. To do this, you’ll need to look at your competitor’s tags in the source code of the page or use a tool like TubeBuddy or vidIQ. Then, just use a few of these tags in your video. For example, I used as
many tags as I could for my competitor’s video in my video.
And because my video’s title description and tags matched this popular video so well, I consistently show up as a suggested video next to that video. In fact, YouTube even promotes my video as Up next, which means, it automatically plays after people watch that video. Now, before I end today’s video, I have a quick bonus step for you.
Which is to increase
your suggested video CTR. As you just saw, the suggested video is a powerful way to
get more YouTube views. But what if there was a way to double, triple, or even quadruple the number of views that you get from the suggested video? Well, there is, and it’s improving your CTR. You might’ve heard of CTR before. If not, CTR stands for click-through rate. And it simply means, of all
the people that see your video, how many actually click on it? And needless to say, the higher CTR, the more views you’ll get.
For example, let’s say that your video shows up next to a popular
video as a suggested video, and 5% of the people watching that popular video click
over to your video. That’s great, but if you could
increase your CTR to 10%, you’ll double your views without needing to do anything else. With that, here’s exactly how to do it.
First, log out of YouTube, or open an incognito window in Chrome.
That way, your viewing history won’t affect what you see. Next, visit the popular video
you wanna show up next to. And take a look at the thumbnails in the suggested video sidebar. Finally, create a thumbnail that’s different from those thumbnails.
For example, I noticed that
most of the suggested videos next to this video use the same colors, red, orange, and white. So, I made the main color
of my thumbnail green.
That way, it really stands out. I also realized that most of the thumbnails didn’t show anyone’s face. Instead, they use mostly texts, screenshots, and visuals. Now, I knew that there were studies out there that found thumbnails with human faces get clicked on the most. So, I made sure to include a shot of me from the video in my thumbnail.
In the end, as you can see here, I have a thumbnail that really stands out. And because it stands out,
it has a super high CTR. And thanks to that high CTR, my video gets thousands of
extra views every single month, views that I wouldn’t get
if my thumbnail blended in.
Okay, so that’s it for the sequel technique. And I hope this video helps show you how to get more views on YouTube.