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5 Ways to Increase Watch Time on Your Church's YouTube Videos


Watch Time

There are a lot of video platforms your Church can and should use. While TikTok, Instagram Reels and YouTube are some of the most popular platforms to engage in, YouTube is still probably the most important. One reason is because it is the second most powerful search engine behind only Google. Secondly, it boasts over 2 billion monthly logged-in users. The huge audience provides opportunities for you to reach a large amount of people. The opportunities and potential are immense.

In order to be effective on YouTube, you need to know some tips and strategies. One strategy involves video watch time. Watch time is how long people watch your videos. It's important because it influences YouTube’s algorithm, driving recommendation and discovery, while ranking results to guide viewers on what to watch next. The longer people watch your video, it signals to YouTube higher engagement to the algorithm which will benefit a video’s position in recommendation and discovery. 

So how do you increase watch time on your Church's YouTube videos so that your Church can reach more people with the gospel? Here are 5 tips:

  1. Hook Viewers Immediately. People will determine if they want to watch your video within the first 10 seconds. That is why it is so important to hook them immediately. Two ways to do this is to ask a question or share an interesting story at the very beginning. The sooner you hook them, the more likely they will stay on your video and watch more. 
  2. Set a Good Pace. "It's a sin to bore a kid with the gospel." That is what Young Life founder Jim Rayburn always said, In the same way, it's a sin to bore people with your video, especially when you are presenting the gospel. Set a good pace with a strong introduction, well-organized main content that is engaging, and conclusion that is to the point with an application. Just because you do have unlimited time doesn't mean you have to drag your video on too long.
  3. Add Ons. These are on-screen text, graphics, or B-roll footage. These types of visuals or change of camera angle keeps people engaged in your videos and attentive. That will help them watch more and longer.
  4. Keep Viewers Engaged. Just like hooking your audience quickly with a question or two, asking questions or asking them to engage with your video by commenting is a great way to keep viewers engaged. You can also use teasers to a key point, application or story to keep viewers watching to the end. Another thing you can do is to use props or objects throughout the video so that they are not just looking at you and your face the entire time. 
  5. Analyze What's Working. With Youtube Analytics, they share with you how each video does and when viewers stop watching. Analyze each video and see when people stop viewing to determine what in the video that caused that. In addition, analyze what kept people watching in high performing videos. Then, make adjustments in your next video so people will continue to watch. 


YouTube's algorithm favors longer watch times. The more people watch your videos, the more likely your videos will be shared and promoted on YouTube. It's important to analyze your audience retention reports and continually refine your content. What world today may not work tomorrow. Keep enhancing your videos with aspects like pacing, structure, and engagement. That will go a long way towards increasing overall watch time, thus getting more views for your Church's YouTube videos. 

What do you think? What are some other ways you can increase watch time for your Church's YouTube videos?  Share your ideas below or on social media.

Through the Digital Church Network we are helping physical and digital churches better understand the discipleship process, and helping churches and church planters understand this and other decentralized mindset shifts. Joining the DCN is free and be encouraged! 

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About Author

Tom Pounder
Tom Pounder

Tom Pounder was born and raised just outside of Washington, DC. He is the father of 4 daughters and loves being a girl dad. He has a background in Student Ministry working over 22 years with teenagers and currently serves as the Online Campus Pastor at New Life Christian Church in Chantilly, VA. He blogs and podcasts weekly at

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