How to Get Traffic From YouTube in 2019 (3 New Case Studies)

You’re about to see 3 examples of “normal” people that used YouTube to grow their online business.

I’ll also show you how I took my channel from zero to over 180,000k views per month… and 130k+ subscribers.

Let’s dive right in…

Why Most People Struggle With YouTube Marketing

Last year I asked 52,613 Twitter followers this question:

YouTube marketing struggle question

Here’s a sample of what people said:

“I don’t understand how YouTube SEO works”

“I’m not getting views on my videos”

“How do I create videos and titles that people are searching for?”

“I don’t know how to rank my videos in the search results”

Sound familiar?

Make no mistake: these struggles are real. But they CAN be overcome.

In fact, I faced these same struggles when I launched my first YouTube channel.

But as you’ll soon see, I quickly turned things around…

The Truth About Generating Traffic From YouTube in 2018 (and Beyond)

I probably don’t need to tell you that YouTube is a HUGE source of targeted traffic.

You may have seen some of these eye-popping statistics before:

  • YouTube is the 2nd most visited website online (even more than Facebook) (source)
  • 55% of Google search results contain a video result (source)
  • YouTube is the 2nd largest search engine (source)
  • YouTube has over a billion users (which equals one-third of total internet users) (source)

Unfortunately, most people don’t know how to tap into this pipeline of targeted traffic.

Despite the fact that YouTube has the potential to help just about anyone grow their online business, most people’s YouTube Analytics look something like this:

flat YT analytics

Flat as an ironing board.

If that looks familiar to you, I want you to know that you’re far from alone.

In fact, I recently analyzed 1.3 million YouTube search results.

And when I scanned over the raw data, I noticed that the vast majority of videos on YouTube get practically ZERO views and ZERO engagement.

In fact, this is a common sight:

A poorly performing YouTube video

I’ve also spent much of the last year asking professional marketers about their experience with YouTube.

And most people describe their YouTube marketing experience like this:

First, they realize that YouTube is a huge traffic opportunity.

Then, they get excited about YouTube’s potential to drive targeted traffic to their site.

So they create and publish 3 videos on their channel.

Then, they optimize their video titles and tags using video SEO “best practices”.

Unfortunately, those 3 videos get barely any views.

Finally, they think: “YouTube isn’t for me”. And give up.

Trust me, I can relate…

My First Foray Into YouTube Was a (Complete) Disaster

Here’s the truth:

My YouTube channel may generate over 180,000+ monthly views today, but this success came after I struggled for YEARS.

And to make matter worse, these struggles completely blindsided me. Here’s the full story:

When I launched my YouTube channel in 2014, I felt GREAT.

To prepare for the big launch, I pored over dozens of blog posts written by “YouTube SEO experts”.

So I was super excited when my channel finally went live. I thought to myself: “Self, it’s only a matter of time before your videos get thousands of views.”

There was only one problem:

It never happened.

In fact, my YouTube views barely budged…

youtube views

And people left comments on my videos like this:

mean comment

(Now that my videos have been viewed over 2 million times, I’ve developed thick skin. But comments like that stung at the time).

And needless to say, because my videos didn’t get any views, I didn’t get any traffic from YouTube:

GA shot

In case you’re curious, here’s a screenshot of one of my first videos:

video shot

As you can see, I (desperately) needed a haircut.

But my crazy hair wasn’t the main reason that my videos struggled to get views.

That said, I had NO IDEA why my videos weren’t working.

After all:

My content was solid.

I practiced my scripts in front of the mirror.

I filmed my videos with a nice camera.

And I optimized my YouTube videos exactly like the video SEO “experts” said I should.

But nothing worked.

Then, one day, everything changed…

How I Went From “Oh Crap!” to “Heck Yeah!”

One day I decided to stop following the advice from YouTube SEO “experts”.

So I slapped on my lab coat and set out to figure this whole YouTube SEO thing out myself.

In the end, I developed a system for creating and optimizing videos that seemed like it should work. But I needed to test it in the real world to be sure.

So I created two videos using this new system I developed.

Everything was riding on these two videos. If they didn’t work, I’d turn my back on YouTube for good.

Spoiler alert: those two videos did GREAT.

My first video quickly racked up tens of thousands of views (it now has over 298k views).

More Organic Traffic video

My second video did even better (it has 400k+ views).

SEO Ranking Factor video

As you may expect, the success of these two videos led to an influx of website traffic and subscribers.

But I Needed To Know: “Would This Scale?”

Needless to say, I set out to scale this success. So I published and optimized 3 more videos using this same new system.

And those 3 videos more than doubled my monthly views (from 38k/month to 102k+/month):

yt analytics

And because I optimized my videos the right way, my videos started ranking for some super-duper competitive keywords (like: “Video SEO”):


The best part?

The people that watch my videos on YouTube aren’t tire kickers. In fact, a good chunk of my YouTube viewers turn into leads and customers.

For example, I send out a “welcome” survey to everyone that enrolls in one of my courses.

And I’ve noticed, that more and more customers are saying that they first found me from YouTube.

(These new customers also cite my YouTube channel as a reason that they decided to sign up).

Now you might say to yourself, “But Brian… you’re different!”. I’m really not.

In fact, when I first got started on YouTube, I struggled with problems like:

#1: “I tried YouTube before… but it didn’t work.”

#2: “How do I get my videos to rank in YouTube?”

#3: “I don’t have experience making videos. Can I still succeed on YouTube?”

#4: “My videos are good. But I’m not getting any views.”

If any of these sound familiar, you’re not alone.

While these problems are real, they CAN be fixed.

And today I want to help you overcome these common problems.

Let’s start off with problem #1:

#1: “I tried YouTube before…but it didn’t work.”

Jeff Rose is a financial planner from Nashville, Tennessee.

Jeff Rose

He also runs the personal finance blog, Good Financial Cents.

Good Financial Cents

A few years ago, Jeff decided to go “all in” with YouTube.

So he bought a fancy camera, hired a full production team, and shot A TON of videos.

Even though Jeff’s videos were “good”, they weren’t the type of “good” that works well on YouTube.

(More on that later)

And despite publishing lots of “good” videos, each video only generated a few hundred views:

Jeff Rose – Early videos

“My batch of videos that looked really good were only getting around 250 to 500 views per video.”

Jeff isn’t the only person to have this experience.

In fact, lots of people struggle on YouTube because they focus WAY too much on production value.

The truth is:

When it comes to success on YouTube, production value is overrated.

Do you want your videos to look nice? Of course.

But as you just saw, unless your content is on point, production value won’t make one iota of difference.

Back to Jeff…

Needless to say, Jeff was discouraged from that experience. But he didn’t give up.

So Jeff hit the “reset” button and started from scratch.

This time, Jeff decided to stop obsessing over lights and cameras.

Instead, he focused on creating awesome video content.

The first video that Jeff created using this new approach was called: Passive Income Ideas: 11 Proven Ways to Make $1,000+ Per Month.

Passive Income Ideas video

How did that video do?

Well, it racked up over 200,000 views in its first month alone.

And today, that video has over 1.4 million views. Insane!

Passive Income Ideas video views

As Jeff puts it:

“This video has the most views out of any video that I posted on my channel. Even those that had been on my channel for over 7 years.”

His secret?

Like I mentioned, Jeff put less effort into cameras and lights… and more effort into his content.

But that’s only half the story.

The other half of the story is that Jeff started to optimize his videos the right way.

Which leads us to problem #2…

#2: “How do I get my videos to rank in YouTube?”

When I first started my channel I blindly followed the video SEO advice that I read online.

And it got me absolutely NOWHERE.

For example: most so-called YouTube SEO “experts” tell you: “If you want to rank in YouTube, use lots of different video tags”.

This makes sense… in theory. But in the real world, this advice is flat out WRONG.


Video tags are designed to help YouTube understand what your video is all about.

And if you use 1001 different tags, YouTube gets confused.

But when you use a set of closely-related tags, YouTube can fully understand your video’s topic.

(It also helps you rank for long tail versions of your main keyword)

For example, back in the day, Jeff would use a lot of VERY different tags.

Take this video of his that has only about 1,000 views.

Video with 1,000 views

Some of the tags of that video are:

Different tags

Imagine that you’re YouTube.

Based on these tags, do you have any clue what this video is about?

This video is about… real estate?

But it’s also about… retirement?


Needless to say: if YouTube doesn’t understand your video’s topic, it’s not going to rank for anything.

Flash forward to today, and Jeff takes a completely different approach.

Instead of a bunch of completely different tags, Jeff uses a set of VERY closely related terms.

For example, let’s look again at Jeff’s video that has over a million views.

Some of the tags from that video are:

Related tags

See how those tags are all closely related to each other?

And when YouTube sees closely related tags, they say: “OK, I know this video is about passive income.”

As a bonus:

When you use a long tail version of your keyword as a tag, you’re VERY likely to rank in YouTube for that long tail term.

"passive income ideas" YT SERPs

#3: “I don’t have experience making videos. Can I still succeed on YouTube?”

Short answer: YES.

Just look at Yuan…

Yuan Chiang recently launched a YouTube channel to promote his blog Mindful Flexibility:

Mindful Flexibility – YouTube channel

Like many people, Yuan had tried YouTube marketing in the past… and didn’t see any results. So he decided to start fresh with a brand new channel.

This time, Yuan decided to try the two-step process I’m about to share with you. And it worked!

The very FIRST video that he published on his channel generated over 1,000 views and over 25 new channel subscribers.

Yuan – First video

Yuan’s video also hit the first page for his target keyword within a week.

Yuan on the first page of YouTube's SERPs

And I asked Yuan how it felt to have his first YouTube video do so well. Here’s what he had to say about his experience:

“My videos didn’t get any kind of traction on my old channel. Well, less than two weeks ago, I uploaded a video based on your teachings.

That video got almost 1,000 views and 30 YouTube subscribers in 10 days (not to mention email subscribers). Amazing!

It may not seem much, but I just went from literally publishing my first video ever in this niche, to 1,000 views in one week with a very simple video!”

#4: “My videos are good. But I’m not getting any views.”

There are lots of reasons that your videos aren’t getting views…

It could be that the video isn’t keeping people engaged.

It could be that you chose a keyword that’s too competitive.

Or it could be that your videos aren’t optimized properly.

That said:

In many cases, people struggle to get views on YouTube for one reason:

They don’t strategically promote their videos.

Just like with a blog post, you need to give your YouTube videos a little “push” to get going.

And once you give your video a push, YouTube will take over and promote your video across the platform.

For example, let’s take a look at Chris Ching, the founder of CodeWithChris.

CodeWithChris – YouTube channel

Last year, Chris’s channel was already growing (his channel had 75k+ subscribers).

But Chris knew that he could do even better.

Question was: HOW?

Well, most people would focus on pumping out MORE videos.

Not Chris.

Instead of pumping out 100 more videos, Chris decided to promote the awesome videos that he already had on his channel.

And it worked!

This new approach boosted Chris’s views by 16.83%.

Increase in views

And his monthly subscribers by 16.45%.

Increase in subscribers

And his videos started to rank in the top 3 for popular keywords, like “how to make an app”.

CodeWithChris – YouTube SERPs

Here’s What’s Coming Next

You can see that, no matter what problems you’re facing, you can totally do this!

(I didn’t just tell you. I showed you real life examples of people that are succeeding with YouTube marketing).

And in the next installment of this series I’ll send you more details on how you can get more targeted traffic from YouTube.

See you then.