What makes a video draw viewers? A more complicated question than you might think

Drakhen99

The Forrest Gump of Motovloggers
Aug 31, 2020
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I ride a
2019 Harley Street Glide Special, 2005 Kawasaki Vulcan 800 Classic (bobber), 1979 Kawasaki KZ650SR
Sounds like good advice and motivating.

That's why I watch them! :D Trying to get tips & tricks, even if I just go way out in left field and do my own thing anyway.

-John
 
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HippoDrone

Admin
Jan 2, 2017
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2012 Moto Guzzi V7 Stone
And this is where having the right choice of motorcycle helps. Fitting handguards to an enduro or MX bike would probs not get many views, but fitting handguards to a KTM 390, 250, 200, 125 Duke however, gets loads of views as it will appeal to a whole continent and sub continent (Asia/India) as well as Europe/UK where a lot of the owners of the 125 are new to biking and don't know how to do things mechanically, and where also the 390 Duke is quite a sort after motorcycle.
Had it been on a generic dirtbike, it would have only appealed to 1% of the 1% as less people are into dirtbikes, so even less into the specific dirtbike the video was about, also most owners of dirtbikes are happy to spanner their bikes without hitting YouTube for a how 2 vid
 
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Meifesto

Semi-Suicidal Dutchie
Jan 5, 2013
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Yamaha XT660R
Wow, 450gb. That's a huge amount of data to edit!
Well, i forgot an sd card, so 520gb now xD
But yeah, 3 days, 7 to 10 hours riding. GoPro on higher settings and a second camera on and off.
So somewhere in the 40 hours of footage I assume.

Yeah, when I go out for 3-5 hours on my bike and I bring 3 or 4 cameras, it's not unheard of to end up with 350-450gb of footage. Ugh. Hence why I'm waiting until the winter to edit them, when I am less likely to be out riding :D

-John
More camera's means moor footage.
But when synched properly you can edit it as "1", just to pick the angles later.
 

Drakhen99

The Forrest Gump of Motovloggers
Aug 31, 2020
1,224
1,122
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road-reality.com
I ride a
2019 Harley Street Glide Special, 2005 Kawasaki Vulcan 800 Classic (bobber), 1979 Kawasaki KZ650SR
Well, i forgot an sd card, so 520gb now xD
But yeah, 3 days, 7 to 10 hours riding. GoPro on higher settings and a second camera on and off.
So somewhere in the 40 hours of footage I assume.


More camera's means moor footage.
But when synched properly you can edit it as "1", just to pick the angles later.

Yup, that's exactly what I do! I throw the clips into Multicam clips, with my helmet cam as Angle 1 [but I rename all the angles to their respective camera names] and when I'm done with the rough cut, I go back and switch angles :D

-John
 
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YBGuy

Yellow Backpack Guy
Aug 14, 2020
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I ride a
2005 RC51, and a 2004 Honda CBR1000RR
Well, i forgot an sd card, so 520gb now xD
But yeah, 3 days, 7 to 10 hours riding. GoPro on higher settings and a second camera on and off.
So somewhere in the 40 hours of footage I assume.


More camera's means moor footage.
But when synched properly you can edit it as "1", just to pick the angles later.
Wow, that is intense!
 

Drakhen99

The Forrest Gump of Motovloggers
Aug 31, 2020
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1,122
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road-reality.com
I ride a
2019 Harley Street Glide Special, 2005 Kawasaki Vulcan 800 Classic (bobber), 1979 Kawasaki KZ650SR
Yeah, and I thought *I* was bad... I have no idea how I'd store multiple rides like that, and I take forever to edit, so I'd run out of storage in a hot minute.

-John
 
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Meifesto

Semi-Suicidal Dutchie
Jan 5, 2013
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Yamaha XT660R
Yup, that's exactly what I do! I throw the clips into Multicam clips, with my helmet cam as Angle 1 [but I rename all the angles to their respective camera names] and when I'm done with the rough cut, I go back and switch angles :D

-John
As it probably because more then 1 edit I'm also working with multi cam.
I did found out you can rename the V1, V2 etc. Which is really really useful.

Might become a screenshot worth for the "biggest project" channel.
 
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Meifesto

Semi-Suicidal Dutchie
Jan 5, 2013
1,654
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I ride a
Yamaha XT660R
Yeah, and I thought *I* was bad... I have no idea how I'd store multiple rides like that, and I take forever to edit, so I'd run out of storage in a hot minute.

-John
When i don't have anything else to edit, which is needed to go online, I edit roughly 5 to 10 clips.
That way you slowly work through the content, steady pace, and with no deadline.
Removes the stress and makes the editing more fun.

Almost done with day 1 ;)
 
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Drakhen99

The Forrest Gump of Motovloggers
Aug 31, 2020
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road-reality.com
I ride a
2019 Harley Street Glide Special, 2005 Kawasaki Vulcan 800 Classic (bobber), 1979 Kawasaki KZ650SR
When i don't have anything else to edit, which is needed to go online, I edit roughly 5 to 10 clips.
That way you slowly work through the content, steady pace, and with no deadline.
Removes the stress and makes the editing more fun.

Almost done with day 1 ;)

I really need to do this. I have 3 or 4 big projects that have sat for months now... I started, said NOPE, and continued on editing something else that had an end in sight LOL.

As to your comment about renaming V1, etc., yeah, that's key. That's how I keep track of things in all my projects. I really need to edit the template project in Resolve [or Preset, whatever it's called] so I don't have to do it every time, but I'm too lazy to figure out how :D

-John
 
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Meifesto

Semi-Suicidal Dutchie
Jan 5, 2013
1,654
1,389
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The Netherlands
I ride a
Yamaha XT660R
As to your comment about renaming V1, etc., yeah, that's key. That's how I keep track of things in all my projects. I really need to edit the template project in Resolve [or Preset, whatever it's called] so I don't have to do it every time, but I'm too lazy to figure out how :D

-John
I was so happy when i accidentally found that :)
Especially considering you can't remove the preview above the tracks to a separate screen.
So you have to scroll through your tracks to find the right one.
 
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Drakhen99

The Forrest Gump of Motovloggers
Aug 31, 2020
1,224
1,122
113
road-reality.com
I ride a
2019 Harley Street Glide Special, 2005 Kawasaki Vulcan 800 Classic (bobber), 1979 Kawasaki KZ650SR
I was so happy when i accidentally found that :)
Especially considering you can't remove the preview above the tracks to a separate screen.
So you have to scroll through your tracks to find the right one.

I'm not 100% sure on what you're referring to, but I think I know. If you're setting up your clips in a Multicam clip, then you can open the whole shebang in the left-hand viewer and switch angles from there or the keyboard.

-John
 
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Adrian

@YouMotorcycle Everywhere
Apr 6, 2018
126
111
43
Toronto, Canada
www.youmotorcycle.com
I ride a
2006 Harley-Davidson V-Rod Night Rod
Old guy on a bike started out posting extremely grainy videos of his rides around Cape Breton, Nova Scotia and on the Island. The vids have nothing but wind noise, no commentary, and were usually sped up multiple times as he rode these roads. You couldnt really see the scenery, there was no commentary and you had to turn the sound down because of all the wind noise. But... for some reason this guy has picked up almost 3000 subs over time.
Re: old guy on a bike... Subscribers do not equal success. In fact, a lot of unengaged, uninterested subscribers can do more harm than good.

He has 3k subscribers. In the past 30 days he got 10k views, and 67 new subscribers. He has 216 published videos.

I have 5k subs. In the past 30 days I got 32k views, 142 new subscribers, and have only published 133 videos. I don't think he's actually performing that well, for his size channel.

Likewise, there are channels his size and my size that get way better engagement relative to their size. There are always people doing things better, but the point is that he really isn't getting all that much engagement for his size, so don't worry about subscriber count, that's not what measures success on YouTube.

As for that second part, uninterested subscribers will see your video in their subscriber feed, maybe even their home page, and they will see your thumbnail, and they won't click on. And youtube will see that, and youtube's algorithm will think, okay, this video stinks, no one wants to see it.

If I could have 300 really engaged subscribers, or 3,000 people who never watch my videos, I'll take the Spartans.
 

Adrian

@YouMotorcycle Everywhere
Apr 6, 2018
126
111
43
Toronto, Canada
www.youmotorcycle.com
I ride a
2006 Harley-Davidson V-Rod Night Rod
I look at my vids I've been putting out. Now I know Im not the most attractive or charismatic face out there by far, but my vids are well filmed, well edited, have content and commentary, sometimes comedy and different things all the time, and yet in five years only 260 subs. Most vids barely break 40 views. Im not whining about it, it's all good, but I just don't understand the youtube audience. Obviously!
You need to draw in an audience to find them. Like Hippo said, you need to get out and spread the gospel of you, but part of that is even just making your videos better on YouTube's platform itself.

You have a video called "How I detail my bike"
You know who's searching that? people looking to detail bicycles. They won't click on your video because it's not a bicycle. People looking to detail a motorcycle will type in how to detail a motorcycle. And they won't see your video come up because you've titled it for a term they aren't looking for.

Likewise, you have a video called "Africa Twin Freedom First Day out"
I don't know if anyone is searching for that... but I bet if you called it "HONDA Africa Twin First Ride (year)" a ton of people looking to buy an Africa Twin would love to watch that... but they probably won't find it because your title and description are off.

I think if you want to see results, stop making new videos until you go through ALL of your old videos and ask yourself:

Who is this for?
Who would benefit from watching this?
How can I make sure that the person who would watch this can find it?

Your videos should be able to answer all three of those questions if you want to grow.
If they don't, that's cool, just know that you're making them for fun/hobby, and not for growing a channel/community. There's nothing wrong with either, it's just a matter of which one you feel like traveling today.
 

Adrian

@YouMotorcycle Everywhere
Apr 6, 2018
126
111
43
Toronto, Canada
www.youmotorcycle.com
I ride a
2006 Harley-Davidson V-Rod Night Rod
5. Interaction in the YT Motovlogger community. Watch/comment on other MVers' videos. They will see it, and so will their viewers. This drives up the interest in your videos and channel.
I like everything you said except for this one. You spend two hours, you watch maybe 10 videos. Leave a really insightful comment on each one. Maybe half of the people to subscribe to your channel. 5 subscribers cost you two hours of your life.

You spend two hours in your garage, showing people the 1 hour answering the top 5 questions people have about your motorcycle. 1 hour editing it. You've now made 5 pieces of content that everyone interested in your motorcycle will get value from from now until forever. You get 50+ new subscribers in the first couple months from it.
 
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Adrian

@YouMotorcycle Everywhere
Apr 6, 2018
126
111
43
Toronto, Canada
www.youmotorcycle.com
I ride a
2006 Harley-Davidson V-Rod Night Rod
I subscribe to several "how to YouTube" channels... and they all have this to say about small channels growing via high-search topics:

If it's already been done, you need to either do it better or make it shorter.

-John
My youtube channel is very heavy on motorcycle-related how to content, and that's exactly it. I get the service manual, I watch the other youtube videos on the maintenance I am about to do, I find all the weaknesses, and then I crush them.

Sometimes I even trash talk like "there are other videos on youtube that do this, but they didn't do ___, which is wrong, the service manual says to do this this way because (valuable insight that makes me sound like i'm intelligent when all i do is read the fuckin manual goes here :))
 

Baldbiker

L Plate Member
Mar 7, 2021
215
278
63
55
I ride a
Africa Twin DCT
You need to draw in an audience to find them. Like Hippo said, you need to get out and spread the gospel of you, but part of that is even just making your videos better on YouTube's platform itself.

You have a video called "How I detail my bike"
You know who's searching that? people looking to detail bicycles. They won't click on your video because it's not a bicycle. People looking to detail a motorcycle will type in how to detail a motorcycle. And they won't see your video come up because you've titled it for a term they aren't looking for.

Likewise, you have a video called "Africa Twin Freedom First Day out"
I don't know if anyone is searching for that... but I bet if you called it "HONDA Africa Twin First Ride (year)" a ton of people looking to buy an Africa Twin would love to watch that... but they probably won't find it because your title and description are off.

I think if you want to see results, stop making new videos until you go through ALL of your old videos and ask yourself:

Who is this for?
Who would benefit from watching this?
How can I make sure that the person who would watch this can find it?

Your videos should be able to answer all three of those questions if you want to grow.
If they don't, that's cool, just know that you're making them for fun/hobby, and not for growing a channel/community. There's nothing wrong with either, it's just a matter of which one you feel like traveling today.
Great answer, thanks very much for posting it. Also appreciate you taking some time to look through the video titles I have up. Definitely food for thought, and a potential project for over the winter while the bike is hibernating. I have well over 200 videos to go through and think about renaming.
 
Last edited:

Adrian

@YouMotorcycle Everywhere
Apr 6, 2018
126
111
43
Toronto, Canada
www.youmotorcycle.com
I ride a
2006 Harley-Davidson V-Rod Night Rod
Great answer, thanks very much for posting it. Also appreciate you taking some time to look through the video titles I have up. Definitely food for thought, and a potential project for over the winter while the bike is hibernating. I have well over 200 videos to go through and think about renaming.
Happy to help. And it isn't just renaming. Rethink these as well:
  • Thumbnails - Can you make them more enticing to prospective viewers?
  • Playlists - If you have 3 or more videos on a given topic consider making a playlist
  • End screen - Yay, someone watched your video all the way to the end, now what?
  • Video description - This will help your video show up in searches - keep it relevant!
Here's an example so you know I'm practicing what I preach and not just making work for you lol

I picked a sample of 20 videos that were getting a lot of impressions, but sub par click through rate (CTR). Then I redid the thumbnails for those 20 videos.

Average CTR - Channelwide: 7.1%
Average CTR - 20 videos original: 3.25%
Average CTR - 20 videos 1 week after new thumbnails: 4.4%
17 video CTRs improved 3 worsened

It's not a huge jump, but as CTR increases, YouTube's algorithm will push the video further up the search results. That in turn usually improves the CTR as people tend to look at the videos closer to the top of the results. The extra views and CTR improvements make the video more likely to be suggested down the road.

Basically, having a better thumbnail can create a positive feedback loop of more views, so a 1.15% increase in the first week, could end up being a lot more down the road. I plan on waiting a full month to get a lot of data, and then potentially redoing all of my thumbnails.
 

Baldbiker

L Plate Member
Mar 7, 2021
215
278
63
55
I ride a
Africa Twin DCT
Yep, I agree, it's all about getting the attention of the algorithm. If everyone out there actually saw the thumbnails to my vids I'd probably have over a million subs by now. In the past year I've been putting a lot more into my thumbnails, after editing my video I scroll through it and choose what I hope is the most interesting pic, take a screenshot, then use that as my thumbnail with a bold title.
 
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