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Viral Video Wannabe

Promoting a YouTube Collab Video

This week I’m running a collab video contest; this is the final post in a series that I hope has made your collab’ing experience more enjoyable. Yesterday we went over how to find someone to collab with. Today, we are going to talk about promoting a collab video.

Having a YouTubelebrity in your video doesn’t guarantee you more views. Smosh could make an appearance in your video, but unless they put the word out about your video as well, no one beyond your existing audience will see it.

Social Networking/Bookmarking

Don’t be shy about asking the YouTubers who appear in your video to promote it. Do they have a ton of followers on Twitter? Ask them to tweet a link to the video. (Buck has Twittered three links to my blog in the past and each time I’ve seen hundreds of new, unique viewers – just from a Twitter status!) Add your video to Digg and Stumbleupon, ask your friends for votes on both of those sites. Build a little Digg group of friends and agree to always help each other out by digging each others posts. And don’t forget about posted items on Facebook or bulletins on MySpace.

On YouTube

Ask the person you collabed with if they’ll put the video in their autoplayer for a day or two. Videos have 48 hours to make an impact on YouTube’s Most Viewed / Most Discussed charts. One day in LisaNova’s autoplay is good for about 15,000-20,000 views. That’s significant. Ask the person you collabed with to leave their latest video as a video response to the collab. This especially helps if you have an intriguing title. Or ask them to send out a bulletin or two. Or embed it in the V-Log section on their channel.

Outside of YouTube

If your collab might be interesting or relevant to an audience outside of YouTube, register for forums and post threads with links to your video. Try not to be too spammy when you do this though, look for appropriate sections of the forum, and make sure you say in your thread why users of the forum should be interested in this link. When I uploaded my Now That’s What I Call Emo video, I registered and posted it on numerous Dashboard Confessional and My Chemical Romance forums, for obvious reasons.


One factor that will greatly improve the chances of your collab partners pimping your video is whether or not you promoted them on your video. Give credit. Use the video description to link everyone who appeared in your collab. Include on-screen credits at the end of the video if at all possible. Use annotations to link everyone as they appear on screen. Doing so will make your collab partners much more interested in promoting you in return.

There really aren’t guarded secrets to any of this stuff. People won’t search you out. If you want people to see your video, you have to put your video in front of peoples’ eyes. It’s really that simple.

9 Responses to “Promoting a YouTube Collab Video”

  1. Julian (ItTakesII) Says:

    Thanks, Alan! I’ve already heard you say that about the forums, and it works! When I made my fake interview with Miley Cyrus I posted it on a few fan sites and it’s now one of my most popular videos!

  2. Carrie-Lee Says:

    More great tips. Too funny you should post this this week. I haven’t made a collab in 6 months and am writting the script for a new one right now! :)

  3. Iggy35 Says:

    Fantastic ideas and suggestions
    I don’t do nearly as many collabs as I would like
    I have one coming up soon tho

  4. Collab Challenge Winner! » Viral Video Wannabe Says:

    [...] makers, everything from finding collab partners, to the secrets of making a great collab video, to promoting collaboration videos. I also talk at length in the book I wrote about YouTube for O’Reilly Media about [...]

  5. NotanAirhead Says:

    I’m a fellow youtuber that loves to make videos. I was wondering if you knew anything about importing videos to your video to make it a collab could you show me step by step how to make a collab. I’ve acuallly been asked to do collabs with but i dont know how could you help me please.
    Thanks in advanced.
    see ya,

  6. Ahsan Says:

    nice tips thanks.

  7. Dutch Says:

    You got a point there. I never thought about it that way.

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Viral Video Wannabe...

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…is written by Alan “fallofautumndistro” Lastufka, co-author of the book, “YouTube: An Insider’s Guide
to Climbing the Charts“. This site offers resources
for readers of my book and new tips and techniques expanding upon what is in my book. Visit the Purchase page above to order your own copy today!