About Tim Schmoyer

Tim posted his first YouTube video over 10 years ago. Since then he’s created more than 3,000 videos, amassed over 50 million views, worked with some of the country’s top brands, and became officially certified by YouTube in “Audience Growth.” In 2013 he started Video Creators to train other creators to master the YouTube platform and use it as a place to spread messages that change lives.

As a YouTube creator, Tim understands the value of views. And according to Tim, there are lots of small and often overlooked things you can do to get your videos in front of new audiences. To grow your YouTube channel’s views and subscribers, you could:

  • Add closed captions to every video
  • Make thumbnails stand out
  • Test titles
  • Plan the video’s hook
  • Use interesting B-roll to keep viewer’s attention

To get an in-depth look at the viewer growth ideas above, check out Tim’s video or read the full transcript below.

Video Transcript

There are a lot of ways to grow your YouTube channel that a lot of people aren’t really talking about. They’re overlooked, underutilized and today I wanna share with you guys what some of them are so that you can beat out your competition, grow your YouTube channel’s views and subscribers using some of these tricks, coming up.

Hey, guys, my name is Tim Schmoyer and welcome to Video Creators. This channel is all about helping you guys grow a YouTube audience so you can spread a message that reaches people and changes their lives but if your channel’s not growing, you’re not really reaching anybody and changing their life, right? So while the rest of your competition is out there tweaking their tags and doing sub for sub and things like that, let’s talk about some of the things that will actually grow your channel and get you the results that you want.

Add Closed Captions to Every Video

Number one is caption your videos. This is so important because when you manually create captions and add them to your video, you are giving Google a lot of information about what that video contains. Google does do an automated job of trying to guess, but those captions are usually terrible and they’re not weighed very heavily at all as far as Google’s concerned because they know there’s a lot of mistakes in there.

Adding captions also makes your videos more accessible to a broader group of people. Whether those people, maybe they’re deaf or maybe they speak English as a second language. Although, studies have shown that the people who are most likely to use your captions, are actually people who do speak English or speak your language, but they just wanna follow along and turning the captions on enables them to read with what’s being said, and it holds their attentions better and they can follow more closely, which then leads to more watch time on your videos, which leads to better audience retention on your videos, which means your video performs better overall.

Now the service I use for captioning my videos is Rev.com, and they are cool enough to sponsor this video so I could tell you guys about them. I use them for a few reasons. One, because it’s all humans actually doing the captioning and not just speech-to-text recognition type software. Rev.com is 99% percent accurate because of that. And it’s all people who actually speak my language, speak English, they’re from the U.S., Canada, like 90% of them are. So I’m supporting jobs here locally as well.

If you wanna check it out, go to rev.com/videocreators or just click the link in the description of this video. And you can sign up, and they’ll email you a $10 coupon off your next order of captions or transcriptions. So go check that out if that’s of interest to you.

Make Thumbnails Stand Out

A second growth hack that I see a lot of creators not doing is that you need to brighten up your thumbnails. There needs to be good contrast between the background and the foreground, so the foreground, the story, the value you’re trying to pitch in that thumbnail just pops. It’s easy to see in very small resolution on a mobile device. I also recommend that you oversaturate the colors just a little bit to make those colors pop out, stand out more than all the other thumbnails that are surrounding your video.

Test Titles

Another thing you can do to make your video stand out above everyone else’s is to test your titles. I know a lot of creators spend a lot of time working on their actual video content, but they don’t understand that it doesn’t matter how amazing the video is if that title and thumbnail don’t entice someone to click on it in the first place. So if you’re gonna spend hours on your video, you should spend a good amount of time on a title and thumbnail as well.

Now regarding the title, I wouldn’t just go with the first thing that comes to your mind. I would spend a lot of time listing a lot of different ideas, looking at different synonyms for different words. There’s a lot of headline analyzers that you can go to on the internet that are just free, just punch it in there and it’ll say, hey, this is kinda weak, it’s lacking emotion or it needs some of these power words in there that would elicit more of a response from people than the words that you’re using. And after I’ve got like 15, 20 different title ideas or so, then I’ll go to other people in my team, whether it be my editor, my producer, or just friends, and I would just say, hey, which one of these is the most enticing to you or you feel like is the most accurate or pitches the value the best?

And if you have people on your Facebook page or just family and friends or just a group of people, a dorm roommate or something, just say, hey, which one of these– just get some feedback, right? And just think about it so when you put it up there you know this is a title that is more likely to get clicks than just a thrown up title that I was maybe gonna go with.

Plan the Video’s Hook

A fourth thing that’s really important is that you plan the hook of your video before you even start shooting. What I mean by that is when someone clicks on your title and thumbnail, they click on it because that title and thumbnail set an expectation for the viewer. And the viewer clicks expecting a certain value, a certain story, a certain something. So that first 15 seconds need to affirm for the viewer that yes, what you clicked expecting to get is coming in this video. So if the title and thumbnail teases something that doesn’t come until eight minutes into the video, your subscribers may stick around and watch, but those non-subscribed people who have no idea who you are, they’re gonna be like, “What did I click on?” And they’ll just leave. And so I recommend you know what your title and thumbnail is going to be before you even start shooting your videos. That’s the best way, that when you do start shooting it, you can open it up with something that you know connects to the title and thumbnail.

Use Interesting B-Roll to Keep Viewer’s Attention

Number five, I recommend that you take a cue from what people in television have learned and that is you need to cut to something every five to seven seconds in order to really visually hold your viewers’ attention. The reason television is cutting to different angles every few seconds is because every time that happens the brain needs to reevaluate what’s there on screen, and it’s like, oh, something changed and they gotta take it all in. Oh, it changed again, and they take it all in, oh, it changed again, right. So it holds people’s attention visually better. So whether you’re doing that with multiple camera angles or you’re doing it like we way we do here in this video, it’s just adding a lot of B-Roll and visuals and examples on top. You can do it however you want, but the goal is just keep changing things up visually for your audience.

Another thing that you really need to consider, though, is learn storytelling; tell better stories. The thing that gets the human emotions involved, that enable people to make human connections with you and your content is based on the stories that you tell. The better your storytelling ability, the more people will want to watch your videos, the longer they’ll watch your videos, the better signals Google will get about your videos that will make Google want to promote it even more. So I highly recommend you learn a lot about storytelling. Read books on storytelling. Watch videos here on YouTube about storytelling. I even hired a storytelling coach not too long ago, and I gave you guys access to some of that conversation in an interview with her. I’ve gone through storytelling workshops here in Cincinnati and I brought you guys along on that journey with me as well.


I put links to a lot of these different kind of resources in the description of this video, including rev.com/videocreators if you wanna sign up and get your $10 off your next order for captions or transcriptions emailed to you, go check that out. and I wanna hear from you in the comments below about what has really helped your channel stand out. What things are you trying to really make sure that your channel is thriving above all of the other videos here on YouTube. And I want the rest of you guys to read those comments. You’ll learn a ton from everyone down here. This community is amazing. So go check them out. And if this is your first time here, I would love to have you subscribe.

Every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, multiple times a week we’ve got new videos coming out just to help you learn how to grow your YouTube audience so you can reach people and impact their lives with the stories and the messages that you’re spreading. So thank you for letting me be a small part of that. Subscribe, and I’ll see you guys again on Monday. See ya then, bye.