YouTube’s Fan Finder Is A Great Tool
YouTube Fan Finder: Use it!
YouTube rolled a service out a few years ago called Fan Finder. With little fanfare that program was rolled into a setting in the channel for ‘featured videos’. I think YouTube Fan Finder sounds a lot more like what this is though, so I’m bringing it back! These videos, whatever they are called are the pre-roll advertisements you can skip after 5 seconds. You tell YouTube which video represents your channel the best and they show that video as a preroll advert to super targeted viewers. The better your video and topically relevant your channel, the more success you will have with your channel advert.
►Tl:DR: These videos are free channel advertising from YouTube.◄
Watch the video below and jump down to get our ideas on what makes a good video and how you can capitalize on this free advertising.
Why in the world would you not use such a wonderful service? It’s basically a free advertising campaign for your best video. Did I mention free?
The execution of making the featured video is real easy. Just log into your account, go to the settings and then the channel settings select featured content.
Follow these steps:
How to sign up for YouTube's fan finder service
There is no guarantee that your video will be shown to anyone, especially if it is not topically relevant or low quality. That being said, this is free advertising that will potentially be shown to people that are ultra targeted. It literally finds fans for you!
We can’t really tell you how to make a great channel ad because obviously it is your channel, but there are some best practices that are universal.
You should entertain, educate or dazzle your viewer immediately. They can skip after 5 seconds, make them not want to.
2) Stay on Topic
Think more show less tell. If you are funny, be funny. If you are smart, be smart. Don’t be cute, unless you are cute, then be cute. Do not assume anyone has heard of you before, inform them the big questions: Who you are, What you do, Why you are different.
3) CTA Baby
Clear call to action throughout the video. This is free advertising to targeted people, use it.
4) Be Evergreen
This is going to run hopefully for a long time, don’t put anything that is time sensitive or ages badly
5) Be Honest
Do not spend more time on this video than any other normal video. Over produced channel ads are a lie and make kittens cry.
Top 5 Channel Ads
We watch a lot of YouTube. A lot.
Here are the 5 channel ads that we actually didn’t mind and shamefully enough, may have even enjoyed, watching.
Use location and scandal to excite the viewer
Does Vice need a channel advert really? I mean they are pretty well known by now, but still this is a good representation of a longer video being used on a bigger channel. If you are in the 100,000+ range of subs and average view retention is 75%+ you probably can get away with something like this, depending on your content.
Educate and impress the viewer enough to entice curiosity
Indy Mogul is a good example of showcasing the content immediately answering the questions of who he is, what he does and why he is different. The 23 seconds or so after the first 7 are just there for reaffirmation this is a good fit for your needs. If you are looking to make videos on a budget, this will be a good resource just from the channel advert.
Show humor and uniqueness immediately
They are themselves, which is unique and identifiable quickly. Their humor comes across naturally along the entire video and you gain a full expectation of the content in the videos they produce.
Emotionally Connect + Non-Traditional Music/Transitions to showcase uniqueness
If your videos are not representative of this advertisement style, do not follow this theme. You will only confuse and anger the folks who expect a certain type of connection with you as a creator and
don’t get it. Be wary of over promising on your channel ads
Laura in the Kitchen:
Showcases frame and focus of videos immediately. Attention grabbed and held with solid CTA throughout
This is a great example across the board. From the thumbnail choice and title to the actual editing, this is a powerful advert for the channel. If you are browsing home cooking channels and you saw that ad, you know you would be interested. I’m not browsing those channels and I’m interested. It’s simply well done.
These are just a few examples of channels that have taken advantage of this great service previously known as YouTube Fan Finder. They may have phased out the name, but the concept lives on. Make a great video that represents your channel and YouTube will show it to the people they feel would benefit from seeing it.
If you don’t have a channel ad, go make one right now and tweet us @weknowyoutube #YouTubeFanFinder, we would love to see what you come up with!
blog post, Marketing Tools, YouTube