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Leo Wattenberg

Cannibalization of viewership: How to avoid it

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Moin.

Cannibalization of viewership is a concept that sounds very unintuitive the first time you stumble upon it: Why would making more content result in less views? 

There's usually 2 reasons to it:

  1. Your uploads are overwhelming the viewers. If you upload too many videos each day, non-fan subscribers will eventually get annoyed by you clogging up their feed. You can see this in stats on eg. the media.ccc.de YouTube mirror: Content was being created from 5 stages for 13h per day over 3 days, translated into 3 languages. The conference was featured on German prime time news and had coverage by basically every news outlet, but despite all of that the channel didn't grow during the conference itself. Only after the endless stream of video found its end, the effects of the large publicity became noticeable. 
  2. Your additional content doesn't resonate with your subscriber base. For example, if you're a band rarely uploading music videos, starting a daily vlog series or livestream may be the coolest thing ever for your fans, but still will annoy people who only subscribed to the channel for the music. 

To avoid 1., you simply need to reduce your upload frequency. One video per day is plenty; you may even want to go below that if it allows you to produce better videos or take some time off. Don't take it too far though, uploading too rarely can lead to people not remembering why they subscribed to you in the first place. If you're coming from "multiple videos per day", anywhere from daily to weekly videos should perform better. 

To avoid 2., you may want to try using different websites or website features. For the music channel for example, instead of making a vlog, using stories some place where your fans can find it may be a good idea. Or you may want to start second and third channels for these kinds of content, eg. how Game Theory has a dedicated GTlive channel for livestreams. 

 

In short: Research how many and which kinds of videos your viewers would like to watch.

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