Why Branding Your YouTube Channel Matters
Let’s Get Started:
Here we are, Lesson 2 from my “How to Get Started on YouTube” series. I really hope you got a lot out of Lesson 1. I have received SO MANY comments from people who were able to apply the lesson and improve their channel IMMEDIATELY. Some people said they had an increase in over 1k new subs on their channel just from that one lesson! I was blown away! Defining and honing in on your niche is crucial to success in social media, check out how to get started on YouTube the right way. Below are the other episodes in the series you will want to check out.
Part 1: How to Get Started on YouTube
Part 2: ****You are Here************
Part 3: Everything you need to know about Tags, Titles and Thumbnails
Part 4: How to Craft Amazing Titles For Your YouTube Videos
Part 5: Mistakes New YouTubers Make
Why Branding Matters:
OK, so you’ve got your niche, why and superpower. Yay! Next step is to BRAND your YouTube channel and incorporate your niche in the process. Branding is really important and will definetely help separate you from the pack. I would take a little time on this and really consider the look and feel of your channel. People love consistency and the more you are consistent with both your channel and all graphics throughout your channel, the more people will want to stay and be part of your little world on YouTube. Branding is basically you telling your story and your “why” through your copy, images and artwork on your channel. Spending a few minutes (or hours) on your branding, no matter where you are at with your channel helps to realign your focus, niche and why. Please note, this doesn’t have to happen before starting your channel or before you move onto the other steps. Branding is something that will develop over time. But, its important to start thinking about these things at the beginning.
1.) PicMonkey and Canva: The Essential Tools to Brand Your YouTube Channel
First step, if you haven’t already, spend some nice quality time with your new best friends, Canva and Picmonkey. If you already have graphic arts experience with Photoshop, by all means, you are ahead of the curve and use those skills! If you are probably like me, you will want to really get familiar with those two platforms. The best part is that they are both free! Both websites have ample tutorials that I encourage you to spend some time watching. I personally love canva and tend to use it over PicMonkey. The main reason I like Canva is that it allows you to create templates that you can reuse again and again. That is important for a couple reasons. One, a few well made templates help to maintain a uniform look on your channel and keep your thumbnails and blog posts looking consistent with similar fonts and colors. Second, it saves SO much time! However, please note that PicMinkey might be a better option for you if you are really creative, since it has more features than canva. Play around with both and you will probably decide on your own which one you prefer. A thorough understanding of a great graphics software like PicMonkey and Canva are the cornerstone of this lesson.
2.) Your Channel Homepage
Next, lets focus on your YouTube channel home page. This home page is very important and will often determine if someone will subscribe to your channel. Most subscribers you get will often come from this page. If someone discovers your channel through a video they found via search, most often, that person will spend some time perusing your channel, especially this important page. After spending a few seconds checking it out, will determine if they are going to subscribe or not. Think about when you check out a channel for the first time. What are the types of things you like to see? I can’t stress how important this page is to your overall brand and growth of your channel.
While playing around with PicMonkey and Canva, thnk about the colors and fonts you want in all of your graphics. People love consistency and the easiest way to start creating your brand image is by picking two to three colors and two fonts that you will consistently use throughout your channel on your thumbnails, graphics within your video and YouTube banner. Of course, you can always change your mind and alter it and adjust it in the future, but creating the imagine from the start will lend an air of credibility to you and your channel.
3.) YouTube Channel Artwork
When someone visits your channel, your YouTube artwork is the first thing most people will see. Your artwork should be a reflection of you, the niche you are targeting and your upload schedule. I would include at least one photo of yourself, and a brief description of the value your channel has to your audience. You can start your phrase with, “Helping you . .” or “I help you . . “. Or, you can give a brief description of your niche yourself yourself. I’m a vegan college student in Texa who loves fashion, or something like that. You can also just use three words like, Vegan, College, Southern Girl or something like that. I would avoid using more than one of Beauty, Fashion, Lifestyle, Makeup and things like that if possible. You can include those words, but I would throw in a few other phrases or words that are more unique. The main goal is to portray in a brief description of who you are and what people will expect to see on your channel. Keep it brief! Check out these channel banners for some ideas. (Please note that all of the links I include are from YouTubers I have featured on my channel. I will list the interviews at the end of this blog post in case you haven’t listened to one and would like to catch up!
Here is the template you can use when putting together your YouTube artwork. Keep with the colors and fonts that you decided on while playing around with the graphic software and use that in creating your banner. One other thing you might want to consider is creating a logo. You can do that yourself through pic monkey or you can have one created as I did. For me, it was important to have a strong logo from the start for the reason I explained above, to build credibility to my website and podcast. I used 99 designs and was really happy with the process. I started my branding with the logo and built it out from there.
*A note about your headshot. I would encourage you to try and take a photo of yourself in front of a bright background. It doesn’t have to be a professional shot, just take your camera and use a tripod and take a few clear, good quality photos in front of a solid brightly colored background. If you don’t have a solid bright colored background, the next best thing is a whilte background with you wearing a solid, brightly colored top.
4.) Channel Trailer
Next, I want you to upload a channel trailer. YouTube gives you the option of selecting one video to highlight at the top of your YouTube home page below your channel banner. This is a great opportunity to showcase either your BEST video or to create a channel trailer demonstrating the value proposition of your channel and give a glimpse of your personality. Obviously, if you are brand new, skip this step but come back to it in 6 months when you have a nice volume of work and can put together a trailer. If you don’t have the time to put together a trailer, or you have only had your channel less than 6 months, it’s ok to pick one of your favorite videos to put in that slot. However, I would encourage you to eventually create that “commercial” for your channel. There are many reasons why having a channel trailer is important. One is to attract new subscribers, but the other will be helpful when you start working with brands and use it as tool to reach out to them and showcase you and your personality.
Here are some good examples:
The first thing people see when watching your video is an intro. You might want to consider creating one to add some consistency to all your videos. A quick two second video clip is all you need. I used Fiverr to create mine. Here are a couple good ones:
Have you grabbed your YouTube tools guide? It’s a great roundup of free tools that are essential for your YouTube channel!
Comment below what you learned from this lesson and what things you changed with your channel
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