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Techniques of influencing: how to win the recognition of the audience

06 Feb, 2023

Ютуберы, которые уже поняли, как работает платформа и психология зрителей, понимают, какие приемы могут сработать с их подписчиками. Разберемся, какие же психологические методы используются авторами в роликах на Ютубе, чтобы завораживать своих зрителей.

YouTubers who are already aware of how the platform and the psychology of viewers works, are actively using techniques to attract more subscribers. Let's figure out what psychological techniques are used by the authors in YouTube videos to enchant their viewers.

How viewers perceive information on YouTube

According to a survey of marketers, which was held by the Databox service, there are some interesting things to note. Namely, the graph shows that viewer engagement in your videos is most affected by their quality, duration, and script.

In other words, viewers mostly focus on how interesting and beautiful you tell a story. That's why the picture and script in your videos are extremely important: they are the ones that increase viewer retention. But let's dig deeper and see what the audience sees in the frame: the author, nature, movie excerpts, footage, just pictures. All of this is important and required, but the most important thing in the frame is the person.

Content without an author in the frame, or, as it is called on YouTube, “faceless” content, will always lose to a live person in the video. How can we prove that?

Why video quality is so important

Often people are surprised that one type of content gets more reactions and views than another, although there is no objective reason for that. But let's remember that scientists distinguish four main channels of perception and four groups of people according to their type of perception:

  • vision (visuals)
  • hearing (audials)
  • sensations, touch, smell (kinesthetics)
  • logic (discretes)

The latter often need numbers, signs, and logical arguments in order to perceive and understand information, but there are fewer people with this type of perception.

This does not mean that all people are divided into these precise types. Most often, there are mixed types. However, scientists have distinguished the dominant type: visuals.

The fact is that people are the same as animals, but they no longer need to fight for survival and listen to every rustle, in fear that a predator will come after them. Thus, the need for highly developed hearing has disappeared along with evolution, and the visual format of perception has taken first place for everyone.

In the case of YouTube, it will not be possible to satisfy kinesthetics watchers, at the moment technologies do not allow the transfer of smells and sensations, however, video and audio are completely dependent on you and me.

Basically, the thesis explains that a high-quality picture is important for YouTube viewers.

Why is it important to have an author in the frame

How do people actually communicate with each other? There are two ways: verbally, that is, through words, and non-verbal, that is, with the help of facial expressions, gestures, and postures.

If verbal communication is clear enough - it will convey useful information to the listener. However, we should also analyze non-verbal communication in detail.

Psychologists note that in business communication the value of verbal communication is much higher, while in a personal conversation, the role of non-verbal communication wins. If we transfer this information to YouTube, then it turns out that non-verbal communication plays a huge role for creators, since they must create a link with the audience.

But why are non-verbal cues so important in face-to-face communication?

The body never lies. So, that’s why non-verbal signals allow you to understand the true feelings and thoughts of another person.

People can distort the information in the video in the way they want, but their posture, movements, and gaze will tell us the truth. To capture these signals, we do not need to be psychologists - our brain does this on a subconscious level.

Also, the attitude towards the communicator is often based on first impressions. It is the result of multiple non-verbal factors such as facial expressions, gaze, manners, clothing style, etc.

Non-verbal signals are especially valuable because they are spontaneous, unconscious, and, unlike words, always sincere. But non-verbal communication can also be tricky, as it exposes true feelings in front of the audience. For example, fear and insecurity. The ability to master body language will help you not only win over people but also control and understand yourself when it’s needed.

It’s important not to lose any of the opportunities to use all the methods of non-verbal communication for increased interaction with your audience. All of the above is why faceless content will lose out to content with a live person in a video.

Psychological techniques in video

If you think that such psychological subtleties are unnecessary for video creators, just know that there are entire teams dedicated to influencing you with video. They are working on all the major channels that have massive popularity on the YouTube platform. And often in such teams, there are people who are deeply familiar with psychological topics. For instance, marketers definitely study the psychology of consumers in order to better sell products or services.

But let's get back to the topic of the video and discuss specific tricks and tips that work for YouTube viewers.

As a rule, people tend to "mirror" emotions and behavior, so think about what kind of reaction you want your audience to experience while watching your video. Highlight it. If you don’t want to motivate the audience for something in a video, you will have to feel the emotion yourself.  For example if you want to make the audience laugh? Then you should laugh while on camera.

Remember that the volume of your voice guides the audience through your own feelings about the story you are telling. If you are speaking in a monotonous tone, your viewer’s attitude will be just the same.

Don't let your viewers get bored: excite them with a request for feedback. This will create the feeling that subscribers are not just watching the video, but also taking part in it.

«What do you think about this? Have you ever felt an emotion while watching content? How did you like the feeling? If you have any questions, please ask them in the comments below! »

Now let’s explore the question: "Which side are you on?" Playing with contrasts is one of the most effective methods of keeping the viewer's attention, as the content creator does not just tell information, but leads an invisible discussion.

You can talk about two different points of view on one issue, giving arguments for both one and the opposite side. Viewers will take sides one way or another, and they will undoubtedly want to discuss it and tell others their opinion. The bigger the controversy, the greater conflict that may arise in the comments.

There are some viewer hooks that last forever. These are topics related to the destruction of myths, legends, and other highly debated topics. No one wants to feel wrong, and when we talk about these topics, it stirs up serious emotion in watchers.

A small but interesting observation: the longer the video, the more difficult it is to think over its structure so that it captures the audience throughout the entire time. And if you're just getting started and want to improve your content, increase retention, and capture more viewers, you should start with short videos.

Use annotations. If you often speak with slang or use professional vocabulary, make sure to explain each term. You don’t always need to voice out the explanation, but you should certainly add captions. This way you are showing you care for your audience and newcomers to the channel.

Always mention reputable sources in your videos, and quote famous figures in the niche. This always inspires more confidence and you will grow in the eyes of your audience. They will see that you are not just a self-proclaimed expert on YouTube, like the thousands of others on the platform.  This will showcase your intellect as a content creator with specific knowledge, deep in the topic.

Another content format that is always relevant is Question and Answer (Q&A). These are answers to pressing questions. This format will allow you to  get into the “pain” points of your viewers.  It will show your desire to help the viewers, and get closer to your audience. Also, this improves your ability to create perfect content for search results.

The only thing is that it is better to do Q&A topics live. Make a list of questions beforehand that you will answer during the broadcast and then answer any other questions in real-time.

Among some other interesting tricks, you just need to think of videos that hooked you personally. Videos that made you want to share them with others.

Below are some other small techniques that will help viewers get more involved in the video and in the life of the channel as a whole.

  • A subscriber's pinned comment is a cool tool to increase loyalty. Pin the best comment under the video, encouraging viewers to watch the video and leave comments. The desire to stand out and to be mentioned is something that always works.
  • Mentioning channels that stood out among other viewers. You can mention this in a Community post or just in the video, as a prize for a viewer taking certain actions. Things like the best comment, assistance with some issue, activity, etc.
  • Author's likes and replies to comments. This is a small thing that will motivate viewers to continue communicating with your channel and watching your videos.
  • Delegation of responsibilities on the channel to the most loyal subscribers. Two in one: less work for the author and building more rapport with the audience. This will display a high level of trust. You can arrange a whole competition, this way the audience will see that you are not just on the same wavelength with them, but you are ready to make them a part of your team.

It's important to remember that YouTube is a show, but you don't have to be a real showman. However you still have to become the best version of yourself.

Being stiff, tight, and having intense gestures in a video will push viewers away. Natural and light gestures always hypnotize and attract attention. They determine the pace, so don't do close-ups of yourself. Make sure viewers see your hands.

Some YouTubers use only intonations, and gestures to become a showman. Some creators rely on charisma, but you can also set yourself apart with your unique style. Great examples like dance, your own special feature, editing, sound sequence, breaking the fourth wall, flirting with an off-screen voice, humor.

What about those people that make faceless videos? Don’t forget that you have a whole video series at your disposal, and it is up to you to fill it with catchy content. As well as speech techniques: work with accents, intonation, emotional stress, speech tempo, etc.

Humor also remains an undefeated way to keep an audience. It invigorates during difficult times, lifts the spirit up, and brings people together.

Study your audience and don’t be afraid to try something new, because only experience will bring you a truly worthwhile result.



Sasha Lerman

Copywriter, writer, editor. Development and promotion on YouTube, as well as many other exciting topics.

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