The requirements for mastery of anything are often described in three basic parameters – hours of practice, regular feedback as well as a reliable environment. However, in a world where the preference for content changes every minute, these parameters may not apply at all. Today, we are only able to see content that is barely a tiny fraction of all the content posted on YouTube. The platform has changed leaps and bounds lately, mostly because of the YouTube algorithm. According to YouTube, the algorithm supposedly connects the audience to different kinds of content that they like, reflecting what they like every step of the way. The following are a few points that could help you create the perfect viral video:

  • Let us assume that the algorithm reflects the popular opinion of the people on the platform. But we also know that the tastes of the audience keep shifting all the time. Which means that the algorithm can only attempt to catch up to the moving audience preference. Content creators often chase after the algorithm by checking on what is trending on the platform, and the kind of content that YouTube is promoting. If there is an instance where a creator perfectly encapsulates what kind of content is on trend and creates it, it results in a conflicting situation – where the algorithm is the content.
  • YouTube technically does not have the ability to produce content. However, by simply promoting the kind of content that they believe will increase viewership for their site, they pressure creators to make the same type of content – hence, increasing the production of that form of content. Look at the trending list on YouTube to find the topics that the platform wants to mushroom.
  • Video length is also an important factor in making your content popular. YouTube favours videos that are longer, because even if someone clicks on your video and doesn’t watch it till the end – a 20 second watch time is better for the platform as compared to a 5 second watch time. Try to get your average watch time to approximately 7-8 minutes (which means that the length of your video should be longer than that, roughly around 15 minutes), to make YouTube promote your video.
  • In the beginning, YouTube only pushed content that a user had already subscribed to. Then, the platform started giving the user suggestions as to what they would like – based on their pre-recorded preferences. Creators soon realised that the importance of their subscriptions was taking a hit, and views were gaining more significance – and this gave rise to sensationalism or as we call it, ‘clickbait’ content. As unfair as it sounds, an intriguing title and an eye-catching thumbnail lead to higher CTRs (click through rates), even though they may not always guarantee watch times. The CTR is the number of clicks on your video divided by the number of times the video is shown.
  • News is that in a few months, YouTube might even have a real time CTR display. This means that creators would be able to monitor the CTR numbers as viewers actively click on them. Which would most likely result in a lot of creators swapping out their thumbnails and titles to see which one works best and garners the highest amount of views.
  • Even though you could use all of these parameters to your advantage, there is one thing that makes all of these obsolete – subscribers who regularly watch and enjoy your content. Content is king today – and no matter how clickbaity and trendy your video is, if people don’t like the kind of content that you put up; your channel is not going to get any traffic. Look at your content from an audience perspective and think of how likely you would be to watch it if someone else posted it. Create videos that engage, entertain, inform and motivate people. If your video satisfies the audience by the time the watch bar turns red, then you’ve done a pretty good job with your video.

We hope these tips were helpful to you, and that you have a better idea of what helps videos go on trend. Happy vlogging!