Elin Box

Pros and cons of three multilingual YouTube channel models

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YouTube is the world’s most popular video platform, second most popular search engine and third most popular website. It is the place where people go to find and watch videos, whether they are looking for entertainment, inspiration or education.

For this reason, it is a very important channel to be on. The process of planning a YouTube strategy is quite straight-forward if you are only producing content in one language, but it gets more complicated once you throw different languages into the mix.

If you plan on creating videos in multiple languages, then you need to think about which YouTube channel model to follow.

This blog post will look at three different multilingual YouTube channel models, with their advantages and disadvantages.

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1. One channel – with videos in different languages

Advantages:

  • This is a good option if audiences in different markets use the same search terms, e.g. branded keywords.
  • Branding and tone are more easily managed because they are consistent across regions.
  • Viewership and subscriber numbers are concentrated on one channel.
  • It is easy for users to find the right channel (because there is only one).

Disadvantages:

  • Viewers might become confused and engagement can be difficult to foster because videos are in different languages, i.e. many videos will not be relevant for any one particular user. Tip: Add subtitles and captions to your videos to make them more appealing to a wider audience; also consider creating sections and/or playlists for each target market/language.

2. Multiple channels – one channel per language

Advantages:

  • This is a good option if audiences in different markets use different search terms, e.g. non-branded keywords.
  • Each channel can be localised to be maximally appealing to each market.
  • Messaging can be customised to be maximally appealing to each market.
  • Viewers will not be confused and engagement is more easily fostered because videos are in the right language for each market.

Disadvantages:

  • Viewership and subscriber numbers will be divided between the different channels and therefore lower. Tip: Cross-promote your different channels by adding the other channels to each channel’s “featured channels” section.
  • Each channel will require separate work and resources.
  • It can be more difficult for users to find the right channel (because there are multiple ones).

3. Multiple channels – one main global channel and other channels for local markets

Advantages:

  • Global campaigns and campaigns in the brand’s main language can go on the main global channel and perform well.
  • For local markets, local channels can be localised to be maximally appealing to each market.
  • For local markets, local messaging can be customised to be maximally appealing to each market.

Disadvantages:

  • Viewership and subscriber numbers will be divided between the different channels and therefore lower. Tip: Cross-promote your different channels by adding the other channels to each channel’s “featured channels” section.
  • This is the most resource-intensive model because you have to employ both a global and a local strategy.

I hope this has given you a useful introduction to multilingual YouTube channel models. For more in-depth information, read my free guide here.

Elin Box

Elin Box

Content Marketing Manager at Webcertain
Elin is a Content Marketing Manager at Webcertain. She is responsible for Webcertain's Know-How platform, producing in-depth guides on a range of international digital marketing topics. She is also part of the Webcertain TV team, where she writes scripts for short educational videos and helps with the day-to-day management of the YouTube channel.

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