Instagram and YouTube logo on phone

How to Promote Your YouTube Channel on Instagram

January 23, 2022
Guest Author

Here's how you can get content-hungry Instagram viewers to your YouTube channel.

With the rise of TikTok, the continued success of YouTube, and the dominance of video on Instagram, the future of the internet is video. 

Digital marketers know that their content strategy needs to have video baked in through the marketing funnel to drive awareness, engagement, and conversions.

If you're looking to start using video marketing on YouTube and want to use your Instagram know-how to promote your channel, we've got your back. 

We're going to show you:

  • How to use different content formats to promote your YouTube channel.
  • Different content types that can direct followers to your YouTube videos.
  • Backend processes that can help you optimize your Insta posts for YouTube conversions.

Ready to introduce your Instagram audience to your awesome YouTube content?

Let's go.

10 Strategies for Promoting Your YouTube Channel on Instagram

Strategy #1: Include a Link to Your YouTube Channel In Your Bio

Strategy #2: Share Teaser Videos

Strategy #3: Share a Link of Your YouTube Videos on Instagram Stories

Strategy #4: Publish a Video in Reels With Snippets of Your YouTube Video

Strategy #5: Find Relevant DM Groups & Promote Your New Videos There

Strategy #6: Share Behind-the-Scenes Videos and Photos

Strategy #7: Tag Accounts That Repost Videos That Are Relevant to Yours

Strategy #8: Dive Deep Into YouTube Analytics

Strategy #9: Use the Right Hashtags

Strategy #10: Be Consistent and Publish Great Content

 Strategy #1: Include a Link to Your YouTube Channel In Your Bio

To get your YouTube channel in front of your established Instagram audience, the first thing you can do is add your channel link to your bio

We're all familiar with the idea of having a link to your merch store or website in your bio and Insta users know to go to this section for more information. 

Adding your YouTube link in your bio can drive traffic to your channel and promote the content you post there.

You can make a custom link to track clicks or use a tool like Linktree to monitor your traffic sources to your YouTube as well as your merch store.

Your followers will know where to look for your important links so use your bio space for your YouTube channel. 

Another strategy is next.

 Strategy #2: Share Teaser Videos

Instagram is focusing on video content and one place to upload this content is through Instagram Video. 

This content appears in user feeds in the same way your images do - unlike Reels which are also in a different feed. 

You can use this opportunity to engage your audience with small teasers, offering a flavor of what your YouTube content is like. 

From there, you can either link them to your channel in your bio or you can link directly to the video you're giving a teaser for. 

We'll go through how to choose which parts of your YouTube video in a moment - for now, know that you want to give your audience some highlights of what they'll get, encouraging them to go check out the full feature content on your YouTube. 

It's a technique used by big and small brands alike, here's one example.

 Example: Zara

Fashion brand Zara has a huge following of over 47 million and has recently worked with renowned director Luca Guadagnino on a festive short film. 

To grab the attention of followers when they scroll through their Instagram feeds, they've added short teaser videos.

There's even a short synopsis of the film to make sure there is a clear context for the teaser.

 Strategy #3: Share a Link of Your YouTube Videos on Instagram Stories

Instagram Stories are super effective to engage with your audience, whether you're an eCommerce brand or a creator trying to start a conversation. 

There are more than 500 million daily active users of Stories - it's a big audience to reach and the perfect place to add your YouTube to let people know about your channel and drive viewers and monetization opportunities there.

The process to add a link to your story looks like this:

  1. Choose the image or video you want to add to your story and tap to add stickers.
  1. Select the link sticker.
  1. Add the link to your YouTube channel or video and add the text that you want it to appear as in your Story.

Your YouTube link will then be tappable by anyone who views your story, sending traffic to your content. 

Here's how it's done.

 Example: Hailey Bieber

Influencer Haily Bieber has a huge following on Instagram of nearly 40 million, but her YouTube account is currently at 1.44 million subscribers. 

To send her followers to her long-form video content, she posts her YouTube link in her stories, like so:

She harnesses her huge following on Instagram to generate more views of her YouTube content. 

Her 2021 highlights video on YouTube received over 74,000 views in the first day of publishing - we can't be sure how many of those views were from her Insta Story, but it definitely would have contributed. 

Let's check out another Instagram format that you can use to boost your YouTube channel.

 Strategy #4: Publish a Video in Reels With Snippets of Your YouTube Video

Reels are Instagram's response to the rise of TikTok, with Instagram head Adam Mosseri saying that the platform is no longer just a photo-sharing app and placing focus on short-form video. 

To let your audience know about your YouTube content, you can repurpose your longer videos into snippets that you publish as Reels

Edit the highlights of your YouTube video into a short video; although Reels can be up to 60 seconds long, shorter ones tend to be more engaging. 

You can't add links to your Reel directly to your YouTube channel, but you can add text over the video so your viewers know where to get the full content and you can add details about your channel in the description. 

Here's one creator putting this strategy into action. 

 Example: Verniece Enciso

Verniece Enciso is a digital creator and lifestyle influencer with 507,000 followers on her Instagram account.  

She monetizes her Instagram account in a few different ways and uses it to promote shopping events she holds over on her YouTube channel, like this Reel telling viewers about her unlimited shopping challenge. 

By adding the link to the video in her bio she drives engagement on her Reel by getting profile clicks while sending people to see the full version of the content. 

The shopping video the Reel refers to, above, received over 36,000 views in less than a week. 

Our fifth strategy is next.

 Strategy #5: Find Relevant DM Groups and Promote Your New Videos There

Getting support from colleagues and associates can be valuable in getting your YouTube content picked up to be shown by YouTube's recommendation algorithm. 

Direct message groups, or DM groups, can be one way to ask for support from your Instagram community when you want to promote videos on your YouTube channel. 

Although these groups can only have 32 people in each, you'll likely already be in group chats with other social media or brand marketers and small business owners, so you can reach out to them and ask them to watch and like your YouTube video. 

Particularly when the people in your DM chat groups are your ideal audience on YouTube, having views from them can boost your YouTube video and get it in front of people with similar demographics.

 Strategy #6: Share Behind-the-Scenes Videos and Photos

Behind the scenes videos were popular long before the internet - Hollywood was making documentaries about how movies were made decades ago; people want to see how the magic happens. 

You can tap into that desire using Instagram. 

When filming your YouTube videos, have a behind-the-scenes camera set up to capture the human moments, the bloopers, and even capture some technical know-how in the production process. 

Then, upload that content to Instagram to give people a taste of what your YouTube content is like. 

They'll appreciate the production values, the charm of your content, and want to see the end result and so click on your YouTube channel link. 

Here's how to do it.

 Example: Jamie Alter

Jamie Alter is a micro-influencer who produces content about his experience working in Bollywood. 

To add a sense of humanity and realness to the high production values of his content, he added a blooper reel of his YouTube content to wrap up 2021. 

He's got his YouTube link in his bio and based on his hashtags, viewers can see that he has a channel and will head to his bio to check it out. 

Quick comedy is an engaging content type to use for Reels so having outtakes and gags to support the serious YouTube content is a smart move. 

Now we're looking at how you can engage with other accounts on Instagram. 

 Strategy #7: Tag Accounts That Repost Videos That Are Relevant to Yours

Instagram has lots of accounts that will surface and repost the best content in its niche, whether that's top yoga content, impressive foodie videos, or beautiful travel vlogs. 

How can you get your video content noticed by these accounts?

One of the easiest ways to get the attention of a bigger account is to tag it in your video description. 

This gives the account a notification and if your video matches up to the type of content they share, you might get reposted including a tag back to your account, where - you guessed it - you'll have your YouTube link in your bio. 

You can also check out branded hashtags or the tags that bigger accounts follow, which will be specified in the bio, like this:

It's a technique that can definitely boost your account when you get a repost. 

Here's the strategy in action.

 Example: Abdulrahman Almaamari

Abdulrahman Almaamari is a professional skydiver, photographer, film maker, and influencer with 20,000 Instagram followers. 

When he posted a Reel showing off tourist attractions in Dubai, he was sure to tag a tourism-focused Instagram page, Visit Dubai.

Following the tag, Visit Dubai reposted Abdulrhaman's video and credited him as the original creator in the post to their 2.2 million followers.

He has his YouTube link in his bio, so anyone who wants to see more content can tap his handle and head to his YouTube account. 

Let's see how you can find the right content to post to your Instagram account.

 Strategy #8: Dive Deep Into YouTube Analytics

As a YouTube creator, you'll know how to navigate around your analytics and optimize your channel. 

The important information to look at when it comes to what to post on your Instagram account is the engagement tab on each individual video

In your YouTube Studio, go to Analytics, then select the video that you want to promote through your Instagram. 

Under the Engagement tab, you'll find information about Key moments for audience retention

Here, you can see where your content is being watched, engaged with, and dipping:

You can see how to interpret the information and find the popular parts of your video. 

The spikes in viewer behavior are the clips that you should share to your Instagram channels - these are the best bits and you want to engage your Instagram audience from the get go. 

It's also worth looking at the device type people use to view your YouTube content and promote videos that get a lot of views from mobile to your Instagram - these are videos that translate well to smaller screens. 

There's a lot of insight that you can get from the backend of YouTube that'll help you figure out what content will work well on Instagram.

 Strategy #9: Use the Right Hashtags

Hashtags are a valuable way to get your content in front of more than just your followers on Instagram. 

Research shows that posts with hashtags get 12.9% more engagement and they're an easy way for Instagram to understand what your content is about and present it to more people. 

It's important to carry out hashtag research to ensure you're reaching the right audience who will resonate with your content. 

You need to:

  • Use relevant hashtags that people are searching for.
  • Look at what your audience tags.
  • Check out your competitors.
  • Diversify from what you come up with.

This will give you a bank of hashtags that will bring in the right audience that you then send to your YouTube channel. 

Let's check out our last strategy for boosting your YouTube account.

 Strategy #10: Be Consistent and Publish Great Content

As with any social media strategy, you want to post consistently with content that gives your audience value so your audience knows to check you out. 

Build a content calendar that integrates YouTube, Instagram, and all your other social channels and owned media so that your content harmonizes across all platforms and you work efficiently. 

Be sure to optimize your content - if you post amazing Instagram photos, be sure to use them for thumbnails on your YouTube videos, for example. 

When you have a consistent message, telling your Insta audience that your detailed videos are over on YouTube and both accounts are high-quality, you'll boost your followers and subscribers.

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