Fact: YouTube is the second-largest search engine in the world (just behind Google). No, it’s not Bing. It’s YouTube. Why? Consumers who want to learn new skills, engage with brands, be inspired by others’ creativity, and explore their world wish to do so using video. YouTube has two billion logged-in monthly users, and each visitor spends over 11 minutes per day, engaging in content. These statistics demonstrate that YouTube has a broad audience that wants to spend time exploring the 500 hours of video uploaded every minute.

If you want to grow your audience for any creative project, whether you are hosting a podcast, building your personal brand, or promoting your music, a strategic YouTube marketing plan can exponentially amplify your audience and help you to meet your goals. Here are six ideas to help you get started.

  1. Create a Professional YouTube Account. Your YouTube presence needs to reflect the professionalism of your brand or offering and distinguish you from the millions of YouTubers who leverage the social platform for personal, unbranded usage. Create an account that uses your real name or your brand name. Upload a professional avatar and a banner image that reflects your brand. To demonstrate that you are an established expert marketer, cross-promote your website and other social media accounts from your YouTube profile. Finally, as you start to add content to your page, organize it into easily searchable playlists to make it convenient for visitors to find the type of music or podcast topics they want to consume from your page.
  2. Promote Your Podcast or Music with Shorter, Teaser Videos. Before downloading one of your podcasts for the first time, prospective listeners will want to sample your content and get a sense of the quality and professionalism of the production. Create a shorter preview video or audio file to tease the longer content. Cross-promote the short promotional video on your other social channels on your website directing listeners to your YouTube account to donate the full episode.
  3. Create How-To Videos. Since millions of people use YouTube to learn and seek educational content if you are working to promote your brand, create and share how-to videos on YouTube. For example, if you intend to establish yourself as a personal brand leader in the area of business or marketing strategy, create high-quality videos sharing your knowledge and helping viewers understand relevant topics.
  4. Create a Sustainable Content Creation and Upload Strategy. Consistently uploading new, relevant content will help you grow your followers. YouTube users will be more likely to follow you and consume content if they see you are serious, professional, and dedicated to your craft, as evidenced by a regular content cadence. As you familiarize yourself with YouTube, begin with a content schedule to which you can easily commit without overwhelming yourself. If creating and sharing content begins to feel like a chore, you may eventually find yourself procrastinating, or quitting the platform entirely.
  5. Stream Live. Every once in a while, treat your audience to a live musical performance, live podcast or interview, or a live tutorial or educational presentation. You can easily save a recording of your broadcast to your YouTube profile so that even followers who did not get to watch live can enjoy your performance later.
  6. Ensure The Quality of Your Content is Professional. Celebrities and top brands leverage YouTube to grow engagement, which means prospective followers have high expectations for finding well-lit content and videos with balanced sound, and professional transitions. If you do not have access to consumer-pro-level equipment at home, work with a local sound studio (like 678 Main) at an affordable rate to produce a polished audio or video product.

Seventy-three percent of U.S. adults use YouTube to expand their minds, network, and connect with like-minded creators. By elevating the quality of your YouTube presence and creating professional content consistently, you can 10-X your brand awareness and meet your goals for your creative platform.