Using Videos To Get More Subscribers

We’ve talked about him before and recognized he has good ideas, and now he has something new to share. Tim Carter, the owner of AsktheBuilder, recently tried a different method to grow his list and is willing to share what he found.

Carter teaches his audience how to complete construction projects using videos. These videos get a lot of attention, with hundreds of thousands of views on some of them, which prompted him to think about how he can use them to get more subscribers.

If you use videos to market your product, or plan to use videos, find out how you can use them to help grow your list.

The Builder’s Video Technique

Carter had a major epiphany late in 2011. He realized one day that he was not leveraging the trust his videos on YouTube created with the viewers. He thought that after a viewer saw that Carter knew his stuff, the viewer might want to get more information from a trusted source.

What better way to do that than Carter’s weekly AWeber-delivered newsletter that currently has just under 100K happy subscribers.

Carter decided to try two things. His first task was to tape a custom short promo that he would tag onto all new videos he uploaded. You can see that here:

If you go to 2 minutes and 37 seconds into the video, you’ll hear him talk about his email list and why viewers should sign up. He even points out that they can easily click the link in the description.

Interested subscribers will still need to click on a link to get to his sign up form, but they have Tim actually telling them to subscribe at this point. This new technique has already brought in hundreds of new subscribers.

What About Older Videos?

But there was a problem with all old videos that had been up on YouTube for years. If you upload a new video to replace an old video, you lose all the accumulated views and comments. That’s not a good plan, so Carter decided to use the annotation tool with in YouTube.

The annotation tool allows you to add notes on your video, so you can still ask subscribers to join your mailing list.

Here’s how it looks:

Since this is not the same format as his new videos, Carter decided to track these differently. The results were close, but the videos with him speaking bring in 38% more subscribers than the videos with annotations.

Why Do Videos Work?

In Carter’s words:

“It’s easier to get people across the trust bridge. If you have no picture or video on your site, you’re going to have to be a lot more persuasive in your copy. My videos say ‘Here I am, it’s me, Tim Carter, I just helped you!’ If people watch your videos and like what they see, they’ll want more.”

But Whatever You Do…

Carter recommends testing your video sign up process to see what works best. You can try anything from a new shirt to a different form. He’s working on recording a new pitch for his videos so he can split test what works the best.

Do You Use Videos to Build Your List?

Have you tried something similar to the AsktheBuilder videos? What has worked for you?


  1. Brigitte Anderson

    5/17/2012 11:15 am

    Wow awesome Idea! I am going to give this a try and see what it does for my list building!

    Thanks for sharing Crystal 🙂

  2. jim cockrum

    5/17/2012 1:34 pm

    I can attest to the power of online video. My simple (very short) video tips hosted on youtube generate a steady stream of new subscribers daily to my aweber lists.

    I suggest you register a domain name, and then point that domain name at an aweber hosted opt-in form for maximum effectiveness. It’s a simple way to have a very professional looking opt-in page without doing any programing or site building.

  3. Kelsey

    5/17/2012 4:37 pm

    I haven’t ventured into video yet, but it is something I’m gearing up to do, and I plan on talking about my email list in my videos. Testing is a good idea, too. And by the way, I actually have subscribed to Tim for the past few years, so I can attest to his quality of info! Fun to see him featured here.

  4. Jeff

    5/17/2012 4:40 pm

    We have relied on videos for years to get our message out, but we are going to use the tips listed above to increase our email sign up rate. It is true that if you make a special offer as an incentive, you will increase your subscription rate.

    Thanks for the tips!

  5. Louisa

    5/17/2012 8:35 pm

    I do use annotations but I think I will change those messages to request for subscription to my email list than the YouTube channel 🙂

    Great share!


  6. Wayne Anderson

    1/21/2013 1:33 pm

    If I don’t purchase a list, how do I gain traffic and new subscribers to my website? Video and opt in forms, as well as automated messages in my autoresponder are ready to go. What must I do next? Thanks in advance.

  7. Crystal Gouldey

    1/21/2013 3:38 pm

    Wayne – You can join social media sites like Facebook and Twitter and build an audience that way. Guest posting is another good way to get attention. Look for businesses in your industry with a large audience (but aren’t directly competing with you) and offer to write for their blog.

    Make sure you’re updating content on your site regularly – search engines love fresh content. You might also want to look into best practices for SEO and landing pages. There are services out there that help you do that.

    And finally, there’s always advertising. Google and Facebook are good places to check out for that.