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YouTube Playbook For Musicians: Increasing Watch Time

YouTube Playbook For Musicians: Increasing Watch Time


By: Corey Tate
Follow me: Twitter | Google+ | LinkedIn
April 25, 2013


This is the third  installment in a week-long series about the new YouTube Playbook For Musicians. It’s a guide for artists to create the best experience possible on YouTube. Monday’s article was on How To Get Found On YouTube, Tuesday was about Things To Do When Releasing New Music. Today is about ideas for increasing watch time, and some of these ideas will work for anyone with a YouTube channel, even if you're not in a band. You can get a copy of The YouTube Playbook For Musicians at the bottom of this article.


Think Long-Form Footage

Try shooting a full concert. Whether its a one camera shoot, or even two or three cameras, complete performances are a blast. In today's short-term web world, seeing the continuity of a full show and how one song flows to the next is a good way to get viewers to have an extended viewing session, You can even break out the setlist and use annotations and code urls to provide links to each song in your set. Full album shows are de rigeur these days, why not do a live webcast from your studio, playing the album in full, and give your fans a taste of what's coming before an album release? Why not a play a live show in a club setting and play the full album in order of its sequence?


Use Playlists

You could do a long interview with the band and break it into chunks, releasing one a week. Then compile all of those into a playlist to keep your viewers watching the full interview.

Create a playlist of your big influences. What bands did you get your music education on when you were young? What musical movement changed your worldview? Pick a major city and include music from the scene. If you're in a band, do a series of covers of these songs.

Do a series of album reviews or critiques with a friend. Get together in front of the camera movie-critic style and go back and forth and what you love-hate-love about an album, a movement, a song. Lather, rinse and repeat every week. This can become a regular feature TV show.

Here's YouTube's suggestions/checklist:

  • Incorporate full concert footage, short films and music documentaries into your content strategy

  • Utilize time code URLs to help users jump to specific songs in a full concert setlist

  • Use annotations to link to specific time codes

  • Create trailers or teaser videos for your long-form content

  • Upload the full long-form video, but consider cutting the long video into shorter clips to act as stand-alone live songs

  • Use annotations and hyperlinks in the short- form version to link viewers to the full video, and use playlists to create the long viewing experience for those clips

  • Organize your channel into playlists

  • Include covers, remixes and other artists in your channel playlists to diversify content

  • Incorporate full concert footage, short films, and docs into the channel with  time coded annotations

  • Create in-video Calls to Action with the artist that direct people to related channel content

Optimizing for Better Discovery = How To Get Found PDF: YouTube Playbook For Musicians


Other articles in this series:
How To Get Found On YouTube
Releasing New Music: Things To Do On YouTube
Increasing Watch Time



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Tags: Music News, Digital Music News
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