Consistency, quality content, social media usage, post useful relevant content, good titles,good thumbnails,good tags, keyword in description. Rinse and repeat. I have found youtube is very similar to a blog (which I ran for 6 years) so I apply the same methods. I'm not what you would call successful, but 2 months in, 30 subscribers and almost 1000 views so far I think I'm on the right track lol.
Key to grow your channel and getting traffic is watch time. Make video's that are part of a series and place them in a playlist. A good overall watch time Youtube will rank your video's higher in search.

If you search for 'Fallout 4 Cait Romance' my video is ranked 1st. It has lower views than the other video's but still ranked the highest because better watch time.


Same to this:


If people search for playlist for Fallout 4 romances my playlist come as first:

So make good video's that people keep watching and searching forever and place them in playlists!
Nice! I want my stuff to come out first too.. one day.. the dream.. Haha
We are having trouble with this unfortunately, as I think our content quality is surpassing our ability to reach the audience. It is something that we really need to work on.
Making videos on topics that viewers want to watch.
Focusing 99.5% on YT, social media is mostly a waste of time.
Excel at all aspects of channel design and SEO.
Research, research, research the algorithm and other channels' success factors.
Honestly, I never thought too much about setting my channel up for success. The following is not a guide, it's just what I did. It is also not researched, I played my channel by ear and never bothered studying. I'm currently at 1700 subscribers.

What I did:
- Utilize tags(I just typed in things I thought I would search if I wanted to find my video)
- Reply to most if not all comments(until recently). I figured that this would help people see me as a real person rather than a name.
- Write more in the description, including some "tags". I put a couple key words in the description to hopefully make it easier to find. Then I always wrote something personal about the video in hopes to promote some communication in the comments section. Nobody wants views with no interaction.
- Upload only up to 4 times a month. I thought this would communicate that they're not rushed and thus good quality, leading to some more subscribers.
- Give people an incentive to subscribe. I make sheet music, so I basically just say to "subscribe so you never miss a single sheet". Better than just saying "like and subscribe!".
- Make myself some channel art. The channel page is the first(or second) thing that people will see, so I did my best to make mine as pretty as I could.
- Use good titles. I just looked at people that post similar content with a high subscriber counts, and copied their title formats.
- Not care about the growth of the channel too much - it's just a hobby anyway. A watched pot takes longer to boil.

What I Didn't Do(What You May Not Neccesarily Need):
- Promote my content on social media. I didn't make a Twitter account until just recently, and even then I haven't linked it to my YouTube channel or promoted my content on it. Didn't post to Reddit or Facebook either. I figured that this would just make me look desperate for views, and I would only feel proud of views from social media if another person shared it.
- Have an upload schedule. I feel that having an upload schedule will either make you rush to meet the deadlines and sacrifice quality, or work at your own pace anyway and sacrifice credibility. I eliminated both of these by never promising anything.

In the end, I made a video that went viral. From there my sub count has steadily been increasing until early this week, when I got a HUGE spike in subscribers per day. Upon looking into it, it wasn't due to a shoutout -- only 5% of views were external, most were from the search/browse feature. I just got lucky with the algorithm, I guess. Basically I just wing it, for the most part. Don't dwell on details, just make your content good.
Build your social media network to promote youtube video and choose the correct tags....also low competition keywords.