Programming (according to Dictionary.com): (noun)
Okay, so you have decided you want to become a YouTube sensation. You assume it will be as easy as creating killer content and hitting publish. The views will roll in and you will be a huge Internet star in no time… right?
I am aware there are a number of issues with that statement. Becoming popular on YouTube is a long, hard road. For the sake of this post, however, let us assume you have created truly incredible content. For example, you have decided to put your own spin on the 2016 election. Moreover, you have utilized quotes and imagery from the previous debate. Now you have a tough decision to make: when do you hit publish? Clearly, you should not wait too long to release the video. In fact, I have a whole separate blog post on the importance of scheduling. Thus, you hit the first major programming speedbump – timing.
Timing is of the utmost importance in programming.
Here is another analogy for you to consider: your mother’s birthday is today. Do you wait until next week to wish her a Happy Birthday? Of course not. If you wait to call your mom on her birthday your message would no longer be relevant. Additionally, your audience (your mother in this case) would be rather confused by your timing – and likely quite upset.
The same idea applies to YouTube programming. If you have a time-sensitive piece of content, you need to be sure it is released within the appropriate window of opportunity. Releasing content while it is still relevant to your audience is paramount to your success in YouTube programming.
So you think you have programming timing down? You also need to take into consideration another factor of programming…
A consistency of content is paramount to your success in programming.
Publishing content that has absolutely nothing to do with the election is okay – but only if that is your intention in your programming. If you are in the middle of an ongoing series focusing on topics of the election, it would behoove you to continue this trend. Releasing a piece of content within the same series without any relation to previous videos will confuse your viewers. Your audience will not follow you down a rabbit trail; therefore, keep your content consistent in YouTube programming.
You have made it this far – think you have programming figured out? Well, bear with me. There is one final point to consider when considering YouTube programming.
Constant adaption of content is key in programming.
You may have power over when and how you publish content to YouTube, but your viewers have the final say on how well you are programming content. Your audience may not come right out and tell you how well you are doing with your programming, but you have tools at your disposal to find out for yourself. For one, reading comments will give you an idea of how your viewers are reacting to your programming. If your videos are receiving positive feedback, keep up the good work. On the other hand, if your audience is reacting poorly to your content, you may need to make a change. In addition, keeping up with when and how your audience consumes your content is essential to finding the best programming schedule. If your audience is watching your videos primarily on mobile, you should be adapting your videos to accommodate smaller screens. Moreover, if the bulk of your views are occurring in the evening, you should consider publishing content later in the day. Thus, observing the reactions and viewing habits of your viewers will help you appropriately adapt your content.
This may seem like a lot to consider when programming YouTube content, but thinking about these three factors will be key in your online success. By thinking about the timing and consistency of your content, you will be able to establish viewing habits among your audience members. By adapting your videos based on audience feedback, you will also be able to keep viewers coming back. Adaption is also necessary to attract new users to your channel. Just like any other media platform, programming is paramount to the success of your content. By simply checking these three boxes, your videos are sure to find their place online.