How to win with YouTube Shorts in 2021?

How to win with YouTube Shorts in 2021?

  • 10 Jun, 2021

So, you know when TikTok made well… TikToks.

Then Instagram started making Reels.

And now it’s YouTube’s turn. Meet Shorts.

They all copy each other for a reason. This format works really well at getting people hooked to an infinite rabbit-holes of short-form, vertical videos.

In this article, we will cover Shorts, what you need to know about them and how to use them to their full potential to grow your channel.

The practicals:

Format: 1080 x 1920. Basically, that’s like recording vertical video on your phone. Like a Instagram Story, a TikTok or a Snap.

Duration: 58 seconds max. It’s meant to be 60 seconds but some people reported seeing youtube cropping the last 2 seconds for some reasons. Just stick to 58 seconds max for now.

Upload process: If you are one of the lucky few already on the Beta, you can upload shorts directly via the YouTube app (look for the + icon and see if you see an option for Shorts). Otherwise, simply upload your Short just as you would upload a normal video and use the hashtag #shorts in your video title to classify the video as a Short and tell YouTube to propagate it in the Shorts feed. This might take a couple of days for your video to start being propagated.

At the moment, you cannot request access to the Beta program. YouTube decides which countries are allowed to be on the Beta and it’s done automatically via their app. We can assume that the Shorts feature will gradually come out of Beta and be released to the whole world. It’s likely just a matter of time.

Rapid fire Q&A:

Will Shorts help me grow my channel?

Yes. Shorts are already getting billions of views on a daily basis and there are calls to action available to get people to subscribe to your channel directly from the Shorts you upload.

Do you have tips to create great Shorts?

Of course, here are a few.

  1. No pun intended but keep them short. They should be bite-sized piece of content that are quick and easy to diggest. 15-20 seconds is what you should aim for. You can go up to 58 seconds but make sure every second matters because if you lose your viewers' attention, they’ll very easily skip to the next Short.

  2. Catch the attention of the viewer in the first 1 or 2 seconds. No intro, no “hey guys, so today we’re talking about… blah blah blah”. This is good for longer form videos, no for Shorts.

  3. Use caption or subtitles wherever possible for people who would watch them without sound.

  4. Your Shorts won’t likely be found via Search. Viewers will randomly stumbble upon your Shorts whenever and wherever YouTube will recommend them. Shorts Shelf, Feed, etc. So focus on your title as much as possible. Make it catchy, short and snappy. Bring an element of intrigue. Try to trigger the viewer’s curiosity.

  5. If you’re already uploading this type of content on TikTok or IG Reels, repurpose your Reels and TikToks for Shorts, but make sure you download them without the watermark (especially for TikToks) as YouTube will not like seeing TikTok content uploaded onto their platform. TikTok & IG let you download these pieces of content without watermark so leverage this opportunity to save time and repost content across multiple platform.

Should you post Shorts on your main channel or start a second channel just for Shorts?

It depends, ideally, you really want to use the same channel to not have to manage several channels which is a huge time and energy drain. I would recommend focusing on the quality of the content you put out to make sure your Shorts add value to your main audience. If your Shorts are good, the viewers who like your long form videos will also link you shorts. If you want to experiment with Shorts with a type of content your viewers aren’t used to, you could create a secondary channel just for that but it requires a lot more time to maintain.

Why you should start now if you haven’t already?

Since it’s a new format, not yet released everywhere in the world, there’s not (yet) that much competition. That means you have an opportunity to create content that will be gain visibility much faster than standard YouTube videos and that can drive a good amount of views to your channel in the short-medium term. So try to experiment with it. You never know what will come out of it.

Will you generated YouTube dollars with your Shorts?

TLDR: Yes but… At the moment, Desktop views on Shorts are the only views being monetized. But as you can imagine, most of the traffic on Shorts is coming from Mobile. So the revenue generated are much lower than with normal YouTube videos. That said, YouTube recently announced a 100 million dollars fund to reward the best YouTube Shorts creators and we can expect the monetization to evolve and be enabled on mobile at some point. At the moment, I see Shorts as a new way to expand your reach and visibility and to gain more subscribers on YouTube.

So this is a great time to get started, let the YouTube team work to improve Shorts support through the ecosystem and enjoy the benefits later on.

Shorts will be a thing, YouTube is definitely dedicated to bring this new format to life in a meaningful way. Stay tuned for more Shorts related content soon.

Do you want feedback on your Shorts?

Tag them using the #yttracker hashtag in the description so I can easily find them. Alternatively, you can tag me on Instagram and share a link: @edouard_iosdev.

I hope this was helpful.

If you read all of this and still have questions, please feel free to reach out to me via the app’s contact form.

All the best on YouTube.


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