Today, I'm gonna show you exactly how to get more views on your publications fast. The secret, a new strategy called the sequel technique. I recently used the sequel technique to get 25,339 views on one of my YouTube publications in about two weeks. One of my subscribers also used this strategy on one of his publications, and that publication now has over a million views. And in this publication, I'm gonna walk you through the entire process, step by step. Keep watching. Last year, I saw something that blew my mind.
I was looking at where most of my YouTube views came from. And even though I rank in the top three on YouTube for popular keywords like, publication SEO, keyword research, and SEO tutorial, I notice that most of my views didn't come from YouTube search. They came from suggested publication, pow, mind blown. In my case, 25% of my views came from search, but 41% came from suggested publication. Now as a quick recap, suggested publication is a section on the right hand side of every publication on YouTube, or underneath the publication if you're on a mobile device. And if you can get your publication to appear as a suggested publication, you can get thousands or even millions of views. And the best way to do that, the sequel technique. In fact, when I used the sequel technique, this publication for my channel racked up over 25,000 views in less than three weeks. And even though my publication is a few months old now, views continue to roll in like clockwork. And it's all thanks to the sequel technique.
In fact, 66% of the views on that publication have come from suggested publication. Which, as you'll see in a minute, is by design. With that, it's time for me to show you the entire step by step process. Starting with step number one, find a popular publication in you niche. Your first step is to find a publication in your industry with lots of views, why? Remember, the goal of the sequel technique is to show up as a suggested publication. And when you get your publication to appear next to a popular publication, lots of people will click over and watch your publication. The question is, how do you find a popular publication in your niche? Here are two simple strategies that work great. First, use YouTube search.
All you need to do is search for a keyword that describes the publication you wanna make. Then, keep an eye out for a publication in the search results that already has lots of views. For example, when I searched for improve Google rankings, I noticed that this publication had over 200,000 views, bingo. You could also look at your competitor's most popular publications. Just head over to their channel, and hit publications. Then, sort by most popular.
And just like that, you get a list of their top preforming publications. For example, remember Jeff Rose, that guy I mentioned earlier? As you might remember, Jeff used the sequel technique to get over a million views on one of his publications. Well, when Jeff looked at his competitor's most popular publications, he found this one. So, he went with that publication for step number one. Next, it's time for step number two, create a bigger and better publication, "the sequel". So, now that you've found a popular publication, it's time to create something bigger and better.
Why is this important? Well, awhile back, YouTube published a little known research paper called, Deep Neural Networks for YouTube Recommendations. And this paper outlined how suggested publication probably works. As it turns out, YouTube focuses on something called expected watch time. Expected watch time is simple. It's YouTube's best guess of how much time someone will spend watching your publication after they click on it. And needless to say, YouTube promotes publications that keep people on YouTube.
So, the higher your expected watch time, the better. For example, let's say you just published a publication about cold brew coffee, let's call it publication A. And YouTube starts to show your publication in the suggested publication sidebar. Well, when people click over to your publication, they only watch it for 30 seconds, on average. YouTube knows that when someone clicks over to your publication as a suggested publication, it's only gonna result in 30 seconds of watch time. So, that publication has an expected watch time of 30 seconds.
Now, let's see you create another publication about cold brew coffee, publication B. This time, people watch two minutes of your publication, on average. That publication has an expected watch time of two minutes, four times more than publication A. And because publication B has a higher expected watch time, YouTube's gonna promote it in the suggested publication sidebar like crazy. So, as you can see, to show up as a suggested publication, your publication needs to keep people watching. And to keep people watching, you publication needs to be awesome.
That's where this step, creating the sequel, comes into play. With your sequel, you take the publication that you found in step number one, and make it better. In other words, you want your sequel to be more like Empire Strikes Back, and less like Episode I. Here's exactly how to do it. First, create an awesome publication intro. Why is this so important? Well, YouTube's data shows that the first 15 seconds of your publication is huge.
In fact, YouTube says that if you lose someone's interest in the first 15 seconds, they're gonna click away and watch something else. Boring, next. But if you grab their attention in this 15 second window, they'll stick around. The question, how do you create an awesome publication intro? An intro that's even better than the publication you found in step one. I'll explain with an example. Again, here's the publication that I found in the first step from this process.
This intro is actually pretty good, but I knew that I could do a little bit better. So, for my sequel, I started my publication off with something that would grab people's attention. Specifically, I let people know that I was gonna show them how to increase their Google rankings fast. I also showed people real life proof that my approach works. And because my intro grabs people's attention, they keep watching. Next, create a longer publication.
Last year, I analyzed over a million YouTube publications to understand how YouTube's search engine worked. And we found that long publications crush short publications. Even though of study focused on YouTube's search, the message is clear. YouTube promotes publications that keep people on YouTube, and longer publications do that best. Plus, longer publications tend to have a higher expected watch time. For example, let's say that your publication is three minutes long.
Well, even if people watch 100% of your publication, which will never happen, your expected watch time will be, at most, three minutes. But let's say that your publication is 10 minutes. Even if people only watch half of your publication, your expected watch time is gonna be five minutes. In my case, my competitor's publication was 10 minutes 48 seconds long. So, I created a publication that was a little bit longer at 12 minutes, nine seconds. Finally, it's time to add pattern interrupts to your publication.
Pattern interrupts are super powerful. In fact, I found that pattern interrupts can dramatically increase your publications, audience retention, and watch time. So, what are pattern interrupts? Pattern interrupts are something that you add to your publication to change things up. A pattern interrupt can be a visual, a camera angle change, a joke, music, basically anything that's different than the rest of your publication. For example, the publication I found in the first step didn't use a lot of pattern interrupts. It was pretty much a static screen recording.
So, for my sequel, I used dozens of pattern interrupts. I added visuals, I changed the camera angle, I told stories, I even added a handful of little funny things. Well, at least they were funny to me. How about another example? Jeff Rose implemented all three of the tactics from this step for his sequel publication. Jeff's intro grabbed people's attention. His publication was almost 18 minutes long.
And he used a ton of different pattern interrupts. With that, let's move onto step number three, optimize your publication. Finally, it's time to optimize your publication. Now, usually when you optimize a YouTube publication, you optimize it for SEO. But with the sequel technique, you're not trying to rank in YouTube search. If you do, great, that's a bonus.
But it's not the main goal. The main goal is to show up as a suggested publication next to a popular publication. For example, let's look at Jeff Rose's publication again. Like I mentioned earlier, Jeff's publication has over a million views. But when you search for the keyword passive income in YouTube, his publication doesn't even rank in the top three. The vast majority of Jeff's million plus views came from suggested publication.
So, how you optimize your publication for suggested publication? It's simple, copy your competitor's keywords. In fact, YouTube's Creator Academy says that when your publication's metadata matches the publication someone's watching, you're more likely to show up as a suggested publication. With that, here's exactly how to optimize your publication for suggested publication. First, say your keyword in your publication, this is a big one. You've probably noticed that YouTube can understand what you say in your publication. It's not perfect, but in my experience, they understand about 90 to 95% of the words you say in a given publication.
And when YouTube hears your target keyword in your publication, it helps them understand that your publication is about that topic. For example, I noticed that this publication used the keyword improve your Google rankings in the title and description. So, I made sure to say that exact phrase in my publication. Next, you wanna use that same keyword, or a variation of it, in your title. For example, you can see that my publication title contains the keyword higher Google rankings, which is a variation of improve Google rankings. Now that you've optimized your title, it's time to optimize your description.
Specifically, you wanna check out your competitor's description, and use the same keywords they use. For example, I noticed that my competitor's description used the terms SEO, improve Google rankings, and search engine. So, I sprinkled those same keywords into my publication description. Finally, copy your competitor's tags. To do this, you'll need to look at your competitor's tags in the source code of the page, or use a tool like TubeBuddy or vidIQ. Then, just use a few of these tags in your publication.
For example, I used as many tags as I could for my competitor's publication in my publication. And because my publication's title description and tags matched this popular publication so well, I consistently show up as a suggested publication next to that publication. In fact, YouTube even promotes my publication as Up next, which means, it automatically plays after people watch that publication. Now, before I end today's publication, I have a quick bonus step for you. Which is to increase your suggested publication CTR. As you just saw, suggested publication is a powerful way to get more YouTube views.
But what if there was a way to double, triple, or even quadruple the amount of views that you get from suggested publication? Well, there is, and it's improving your CTR. You might've heard of CTR before. If not, CTR stands for click through rate. And it simply means, of all the people that see your publication, how many actually click on it? And needless to say, the higher CTR, the more views you'll get. For example, let's say that your publication shows up next to a popular publication as a suggested publication, and 5% of the people watching that popular publication click over to your publication. That's great, but if you could increase your CTR to 10%, you'll double your views without needing to do anything else.
With that, here's exactly how to do it. First, log out of YouTube, or open an incognito window in Chrome. That way, your viewing history won't effect what you see. Next, visit the popular publication you wanna show up next to. And take a look at the thumbnails in the suggested publication sidebar. Finally, create a thumbnail that's different from those thumbnails.
For example, I noticed that most of the suggested publications next to this publication use the same colors, red, orange, and white. So, I made the main color of my thumbnail green. That way, it really stands out. I also realized that most of the thumbnails didn't show anyone's face. Instead, they use mostly texts, screenshots, and visuals. Now, I knew that there were studies out there that found thumbnails with human faces get clicked on the most.
So, I made sure to include a shot of me from the publication in my thumbnail. In the end, as you can see here, I have a thumbnail that really stands out. And because it stands out, it has a super high CTR. And thanks to that high CTR, my publication gets thousands of extra views every single month, views that I wouldn't get if my thumbnail blended in. Okay, so that's it for the sequel technique. And I hope this publication helps show you how to get more views on YouTube.
And if you learned some cool new stuff from today's publication, make sure to subscribe to my YouTube channel right now. Just click on the subscribe button below this publication. Also, if you want exclusive SEO techniques that I only share with subscribers, head over to Backlinko.com. And hop on the newsletter, it's free. Now, it's your turn. Which of the strategies from today's publication are you gonna try first? Are you gonna start using pattern interrupts? Or maybe you're ready to increase your CTR.
Either way, let me know by leaving a comment below right now. (groans) All right, say what? No, I'm good, I'm good. 'Cause I'm kind of Mister Burns a little bit. Okay, practice. We prayed to the wireless microphone god. It's loud as hell. So, I'm gonna go like, pow!