Once you decide which games you’d like to stream and/or record, it’s time to create a schedule for the channel. But, is an actual schedule necessary? Well, that depends on a few factors.
Today, I’ll go over some of the things you’ll want to consider when coming up with the best times to stream.
Setting Up a Schedule for Your YouTube Channel
Remember, this series of building a channel is essentially following me as I set up my own. Though, most of what I talk about in these articles is based on my own experience with other channels I have or manage.
I just need to square away enough time to actually get more gaming content up. I am a busy man, after all.
Tapping FOMO and Getting Dedicated Viewers
A schedule can do wonders for hitting the sense of fear-of-missing-out, or FOMO. It’s when people are worried they’re going to miss something vital, whether it’s entertainment or news.
Not to mention how most successful YouTubers see a vast improvement in engagement when people know when they are going to upload or live stream.
When your video content is more haphazard, your audience doesn’t really know when you’ll publish next. This can make your videos out of sync with the people who really want to watch you online.
Dedicated viewers are also more likely to comment, share, buy merch, use promo codes, and much more. You can build that dedication by delivering timely content.
What Are You Capable of Handling?
Before setting up a schedule for your channel, consider what you’re capable of uploading. How often can you stream? How long does it take to edit and upload a video? Do you have enough time in the week to meet deadlines?
One of the major issues I’m having right now is not having enough time in my day to get gaming videos up. That’s because right now I am up to my eyes in blogs and client work.
After all, I still need to pay the bills until I can make that mad YouTube money. Yeah…cause AdSense pays great, right?
Anyway, my point is that you need to make sure you can stick with a specific schedule. You might lose some of your audience if you’re not consistent.
When Does Your Target Audience Watch Videos?
YouTube has a feature in analytics that will show you when people are watching your content throughout the day. Pushing out videos or live streams during these periods is more likely to hit those viewers immediately.
You can find this information by clicking the “Audience” tab in your Analytics dashboard of YouTube.
For example, according to the data for WriterSanctuary’s YouTube channel, most viewership throughout the week happens between 11:00 am and 12:00 pm. If I publish videos at those moments, subscribers and searchers are more likely to see the content.
In turn, they are also more likely to click and watch the video.
Use metrics like these to set up your own publishing and live streaming schedule for the channel. You want as many returning viewers as possible, get them while they’re on!
Of course, you’ll need a bit of time to really get some accurate numbers. So, test different times and games for about a month or two to get a feel for when you should upload or go live.
Also, keep in mind that trends can change. The schedule you have today may not be the same you’ll want to keep in about three months.
VOD and Live Content
When setting up a schedule for your content on YouTube, decide how you’ll handle video-on-demand, or VOD, and live streams.
Here’s an example, I have 10 to 15 people who regularly show up on every Monday and Friday live stream. I once put a title that I was unsure what to do with Friday’s after my co-host left, and it was nearly a revolt!
People were seriously upset because they thought I was going to quit the Friday show.
You’ll get dedicated viewers who rely on your specific timeslot to fulfill their day. And if you miss out on a single one, a lot of them will freak out.
These viewers are the dedicated fan base I was talking about earlier. They will support you in a myriad of ways and help you get the videos out to more people.
Every one of my regulars are now used to me streaming live content at those specific times in the week.
How Long Will Videos Be?
Longer videos don’t necessarily mean you’ll get more watch time. But if you have a fun and engaging personality, then an hour-long video can rake in the viewership.
To know what format is going to work best, you’ll need to test the waters. This means making a few videos of varying lengths, game content, and even overlay graphics if you wish.
Then, take a look at your YouTube analytics for each video. Watch time, click-through rates, audience reach, engagement…it’s all there for you to use to build a better video and stream layout.
Never underestimate the value of data.
Do You Absolutely Need a Publishing Schedule?
You don’t absolutely need a publishing schedule to be successful with a YouTube channel. It really comes down to the videos and live streams you create and if you have a personality people love to watch.
However, having a schedule gives you a much greater chance at building a community of dedicated viewers. These people will boost your watch time, help you get more subscribers, and contribute to the amount of money you make once you’re in the YouTube Partner Program.
So, even though you don’t absolutely need a set schedule, it’ll vastly improve your chances of building a gaming channel.
In reality, there are a lot of variables that come into play when trying to build success on any platform. Personality, game type, editing skills, effects, interaction with the audience, and much more all play a role.
Still, letting people know exactly when you’re going to upload and stream is in your best interest.
Do You Think a Schedule Will Help Your Channel?
Speaking from experience, I’ve already seen how effective a schedule is for a YouTube channel. But as I said, you might still be successful without one.
Just remember that one of the keys to success on YouTube is the return viewer. Your community can do wonders to propel you forward in a plethora of ways.
The best way to engage that community is by setting up a dedicated schedule for the channel.
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