How do I know if my YouTube channel is successful? Is the goal to get the most views possible?

Views are good, but what you really need to pay attention to is the engagement of your audience. In the world of web video, engagement refers to how long a viewer watches your video.

Gauging Audience Engagement

YouTube Analytics is an excellent tool for determining the engagement level for your YouTube videos. YouTube's audience retention report allows you to see:

  • The average view duration for all videos on your channel
  • The top 10 videos ranked according to longest viewing time
  • Audience retention information for each of your videos

When you look at your individual videos, pay close attention to the absolute audience retention. This shows the views for every second of your video as a percentage. At the beginning of your video, the percentage will be 100, as this represents every person who clicked on your video.

Statistically, the first 15 seconds of any video have the highest drop-off rate. The high rate at this benchmark is common and can, in part, be chalked up to people clicking on the wrong video. However, if the drop-off rate is very high at any point in the video, even in the first 15 seconds, it's time to take a closer look at your video. People most often exit a video before it's over when:

  • The description of the video doesn't match the video itself.
  • The video is of poor quality—hard to hear or see.
  • The video starts out with a sales pitch.
  • There appears to be no entertainment value or information given in the video.

Fix Your Videos

Now that you know which videos are working and which aren't, it's time to address the issues causing low retention rates. Call 703.962.1270, and our Virginia web video production team can help you fix your company's YouTube Channel and realize success in your video marketing campaign.

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Jim Folliard
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Founder, Director, Cinematographer, Photographer & Editor