Is YouTube Optimization Dead?

Is YouTube Optimization Dead?
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Like it or not, optimization is the key to success. We’ve all heard of search engine optimization, where you tailor written content to appease the search engine overlords. But what about YouTube optimization? This New York Times article hopes to change that. 

In Chris Almedia’s piece, the YouTube algorithm is introduced to us as a key part of Mr Beast’s success.

“Within a moment of clicking on any MrBeast video, he is shouting at his 250 million subscribers to explain the thesis of the video,” Almedia explains. “Every thumbnail displays his face — with his mouth closed these days, which he said brings in more clicks than thumbnails where he has his mouth open. Titles are written in a classic clickbait style, like ‘In 10 Minutes This Room Will Explode!’”

This, the article explains, has led to a surge in copycat-type videos: all with clickbait titles, overly expressive, saturated thumbnails, elaborate stunts, and “heavily-edited content.” But while attempts to game the YouTube algorithm have run rampant on the app, the Times singles out one creator who doesn’t play by these rules: Sam Sulek. 

Who is Sam Sulek?

Sam Sulek is a fitness creator with over 3 million subscribers. “Low-fi” content is his specialty. This style includes minimal editing, straightforward titles, and simple thumbnails. 

With no regard for YouTube’s algorithm, it feels like Sulek’s strategy (or lack thereof) shouldn’t work. And yet, it does. The kicker? Audiences are falling out of love with content mill-type videos focussed on appeasing an algorithm. They want more authenticity and, daresay, heart. 

You can read the full New York Times article here.

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