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Youtube Creator Playbook


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  • 1. Creator Playbook Version 2 February 2012
  • 2. Table of Contents3 Introduction4 Playbook Structure5 Icons & Key Definitions --------6 Prelude: YouTube Analytics  Programming & Producing Publishing & Optimization Community & Social Media14 The First 15 Seconds 39 Metadata 70 Involve Your Audience18 Calls to Action 44 Thumbnails 75 Blog Outreach23 Regular Schedule and Frequency 47 Annotations 78 Other Social Media28  Tent-pole Programming 52 Playlists & Video Responses 84 Checklist31  Cross-promotion and Collaboration 57 Channel Page --------37 Checklist 63 Reaching All Audiences 86 Appendix 68 Checklist   87 Video Upload Checklist 88  Metadata Keyword Resources 89 Glossary of Terms   2  
  • 3. IntroductionWelcome to the second edition of The YouTube Creator There Are No Rules to Making Great ContentPlaybook! This version features a new look, brand new The Creator Playbook is not a collection of rules or guaranteed ‘tricks’ to get more views. Instead, it presents best practices, optimization tips,sections to reflect the new channel design, and lots of and suggested strategies for building audience and engagement onupdates to help you optimize for the overall new site layout. YouTube. We’ve tried to frame our suggestions and tips to encourage a variety of uses and to encourage creators to innovate and develop theirWe’re excited to provide our partners with a great resource own approach.that compiles important tips, best practices, and strategies Be Creative in Applying The Playbook to Your Channelthat will help you build your audience on YouTube. We We understand that not every strategy or optimization will apply tohope you find the information helpful to your creative every creator on YouTube. Each bit of information will apply differentlyprocess and that we can help you take your channel to the to the myriad of channels, categories, and talented creators that makenext level. First, we want to address some questions you YouTube so great. The Creator Playbook requires you to be creative inmay have about what kind of information is presented in its application. This resource should be a guide for how to think strategically about the content you make, where to focus yourThe Creator Playbook and how you should use this optimization efforts, and should inspire you to constantly try new things.resource as a new tool to achieve your creative goals. Use The Creator Playbook alongside your creativity, passion, and commitment to creating great content; it will not act as a substitute for any of these necessary elements of success. There’s Always More To Know YouTube learns a lot from its partners and we’re constantly finding new The most important part of what you tips and trends to share back with you. As the platform evolves and as do on YouTube – the greatest optimization new features are released, there will be updates to The Creator Playbook with new strategies, tips and optimizations for you to try. – is to make something great, and to love Check back with us often to get these updates so you can continue to what you’re making. learn how to build audience and utilize new features to reach more people in meaningful ways. 3  
  • 4. Playbook StructureThe Creator Playbook is structured into three sections: Programming & Producing, Publishing & Optimization, Community& Social Media. Each section presents several optimizations or strategies for building audience or engagement onYouTube. These ‘best practices’ are each explained in stages to help you understand each point and guide you throughtaking action.Overview Page DetailsIncludes: •  Provides context and further detail on why the best practice is•  Strategy: Brief description important or how to implement.•  Why It Works: Reasoning or context•  How To Do It: Short explanation of how to implement. ExamplesA Visual Key Guide to: •  Presents examples and/or different methods or variations.•  Time Cost: Estimation of how much time is required.•  Effect: Outlines what metrics are affected by optimization. How-to (and Analytics Tip)•  Impact Rating: Estimation of how much effect an optimization or strategy will have on outlined metrics. •  Once you understand the strategy or optimization, you’re ready to•  Optimization Type: Denotes if optimization or strategy is production take action. This page outlines basic steps to get you going. based, achieved during publishing, or something based around •  The how-to page also contains an ‘Analytics Tip’ which will provide community or outreach. information on how to measure and track changes to your channel’s performance and the metrics that may be affected. 4  
  • 5. Icons & Key Definitions Progress bar appears at the top of the page showing the progress throughProgress Bar each best practice explanation.Time Cost Minimal: Moderate: Medium: Major: 0 – 5 Minutes Less than 1 Hour 1+ Hours Full Day or More Metrics the optimization will influence: viewership, subscribers, videoEffect ranking, engagement…Impact Rating Optimization Type 1 : Moderate •  Implemented before going into production 3 : Strong •  Implemented during production process 5 : Major •  Implemented at the time of video uploading •  Implemented after video has been published 5  
  • 6. PreludeYouTube AnalyticsYouTube Analytics is a powerful tool and valuable resource In addition to this initial overview section of YouTubefor all content creators. The tool provides deep insights Analytics, every How-to page of The Playbook includes anabout your channel, videos, and audience. Analytics ‘Analytics Tip’ to help you use the tool to assess the impactshould be used in conjunction with The YouTube Creator of any changes implemented.Playbook to help you prioritize optimizations, measureimpact of new strategies, and to assess your channel’sperformance. 6  
  • 7. YouTube AnalyticsStrategy:Use YouTube Analytics regularly to assess your channel’s performance, andinvestigate changes or trends across different metrics.Why It Works:Analytics provides actionable intelligence for creators to make better videos,implement or measure optimizations, and develop strategic programming.How To Do It:Gain fluency in YouTube Analytics product. Routinely assess channel’sperformance and make changes to content or strategies based on findings. Time Cost Effect Impact Optimization Type •  Engagement •  Subscribers •  Views Medium: 1+ Hours •  Community Activity 7  
  • 8. YouTube AnalyticsYouTube Analytics is a robust tool that provides informative •  Start ‘macro’ and move into the ‘micro.’ Assess metrics from a topdata and insights about your content, your audience, and level or expanded time period, and then focus in on areas that show something interesting or unusual. A change or spike in one metricyour programming. What you learn by using YouTube should lead you to investigate other metrics that correlate. ForAnalytics can help inform programming and production example, a change in viewership should lead you to investigatedecisions for your channel, and helps every creator be traffic sources, then maybe a specific video.smarter and more strategic with the videos they create. •  Compare the changes for different metrics against each other to understand the relationships between them.Find the ‘Story’ Behind Peaks and Changes •  Don’t just analyze your newest videos, use Analytics to learn aboutDon’t just use YT Analytics for a quick look at your channels what videos from your archive continue to perform well.performance – explore the tool to gain a deep understanding of yourcontent, audience, and strategies. With the right knowledge and usage, •  Prioritize your efforts by starting optimizations on your top-creators can understand causality and correlations between the various performing videos and work backward.metrics and gain insight that will help build an audience. The data willalways tell a story, when you know how to read it. 8  
  • 9. YouTube AnalyticsViewership•  Identify and analyze your most viewed days, weeks, and individual videos to understand why they were so successful. Determine the causes or catalysts for the high performance and build on them: repeat themes or video topics in a new, creative way or shift how you divide up time and resources to focus on types of videos that performed well in the past.•  Optimize the videos from your archive that continue to perform well. •  Make sure the video is annotated to gain subscribers, encourage community actions (commenting), and drive the traffic to more of your content or channel. •  Use the old video as a traffic driver to new uploads or initiatives you want to promote.•  Use the trends that are happening on your content to set a release schedule, determine a playlist strategy, or organize your channel in a new way.•  Compare your views to unique viewers to understand how much content each of your viewers watches and how well you organize and present content to the audience.Subscribers•  Examine the dates or videos where there was a high gain or loss of subscribers to learn more about what resonates with your audience.•  Identify and analyze videos that drove the most subscriptions relative to how many views they received to learn what caused more viewers to become subscribers.•  Measure the impact of including a ‘subscribe’ call to action or annotation in videos. 9  
  • 10. YouTube AnalyticsCommunity Actions: Likes, Favorites, Comments, Shares•  Measure community actions as a ratio of total views to gain the best understanding of what videos are causing the most actions.•  Assess which videos get the most actions relative to how many views they’ve received to better understand which videos increase engagement with your viewers and why.•  Measure the impact of including calls to action and annotations for comments, likes, or favorites in your videos.Traffic Sources•  There can be different peaks and valleys within each traffic source, so examine the changes in each to better understand overall viewership. Changes in viewership can be caused by a shift in all traffic sources at once, or sometimes just one.•  Understand how viewers discover your content at a channel and per-video level so you can make creative or strategic decisions. When examining individual videos, you can see what other specific videos are driving traffic via suggested or related video placement.•  The new homepage creates new ways for viewers to discover channels – use traffic sources to identify which of these new sources may be driving views for your videos•  Assess the impact from a new metadata strategy, thumbnail optimization, or blog outreach initiative by examining the different traffic sources relevant to each change.•  Look at the traffic sources for specific videos to measure the effectiveness of cross- promotions or other actions that drove traffic on your channel.•  Determine the level of ‘active subscribers’ on your channel by seeing how many views for new uploads or on the channel come from subscription modules. 10  
  • 11. YouTube AnalyticsAudience Retention•  The ‘Relative’ retention graph shows how your video performance compared to other videos on YouTube of the same length. ‘Absolute’ shows you the viewer retention for every 10 seconds of the video.•  Improve the format or pacing of your videos and find optimal video length by examining the graphs. Identify the parts of your videos that are most interesting to the audience (peaks), and at what points viewers fast-forward or abandon the video (drops) - these patterns will highlight needed changes to content and/or packaging.Demographics and Geographics•  Learn more about your audience and what particular videos or content resonates with them by analyzing your audience location, gender, and age.•  Tailor your strategy and videos to best serve the current audience or to target a new one.•  Track changes to your demographics over time or across different types of content you publish to know how your audience evolves.•  Optimize for international audiences by identifying the countries where your content is popular. If your content is performing well in a foreign language consider transcribing and enabling captions to subtitle your videos for specific languages. 11  
  • 12. YouTube AnalyticsHow-To Steps1. Gain fluency in YouTube Analytics 4. Make programming or creative decisions based on yourExplore YouTube Analytics and read through documentation to data assessmentunderstand what each metric measures and represents. When you have assessed your channel performance, decide what actions to take based on your findings.2. Regularly assess performance and track optimizations Find ways to build on your channels ‘peaks of success.’ Understand why certain videos performed well and make programming and creativeMake checking your Analytics part of your YouTube workflow to know decisions to build on that previous your videos and overall channel are performing. Understand why certain videos or formats performed poorly and adjustKeep a record of when you implement new optimizations or change your future strategy to avoid drop-offs and low performance.your strategy. When changes are made, so you can track results andimpact days or weeks later. 5. Track results of implemented changes3. Refer to the ‘Analytics Tip’ in each section When you make changes based on previous data, track relevantAnalytics Tips at the end of each section help you use this tool in every metrics to see if the changes cause the desired result.area. Track the peaks and valleys of all metrics carefully and set goals for each. Use Analytics, and downloadable reports to keep an ongoing record of your channel’s performance with notes on when new strategies or optimizations were implemented. 12  
  • 13. Section OneProgramming & Producing14 The First 15 Seconds18 Calls to Action23 Regular Schedule and Frequency28 Tent-pole Programming31 Cross-promotion and Collaboration37 Checklist 13  
  • 14. Programming & ProducingThe First 15 SecondsStrategy:Make the beginning of your videos compelling to your viewer.Why It Works:Attentions spans are short. Hook viewers right from the start and increaseengagement for the entire length of the video.How To Do It:Accomplished through production and video structure. Time Cost Effect Impact Optimization Type •  Engagement •  Subscribers •  Video Ranking Moderate: Less than 1 Hour •  Views 1 2 3 4 5 14  
  • 15. Programming & ProducingThe First 15 SecondsMany viewers decide whether they are going to keep watching your …Branding and Packaging Latervideo within the first 10-15 seconds. Attention spans can be short andthey are just one click away from abandoning your video. The video’s •  Branding, flashy intros, and packaging can create a professionalcontent - “What am I Watching?” - should also come across in the first quality to your content, but it’s not the star of the video.few moments and hook them early to give them a reason to stickaround. •  Let the content or the personality be the star upfront; then the viewer has a reason to watch past the intro and continue with the video. •  Or you can make sure the branding is compelling content thatCompelling Content First… entertains the viewer. (See Examples)•  The first thing the viewer sees should be compelling, whether it is •  Packaging and branding should be minimal and short. We’ve found the personality or the content of the video. 5 seconds to be an optimal length.•  Personalities should address/welcome the audience, ask a question, spark the viewer’s curiosity, tease the rest of the video. What Am I Watching?•  Use a ‘teaser’ for the content of the video; start with a quick clip of •  In a lot of cases of non-fiction programming, it is important to make it what’s to come later in the video. clear to your viewers what your video is, and what they’ll be watching. If the viewer still doesn’t know exactly what they’re watching in the start of the video, they’re gone.Capture Attention Brief Branding (Optional) Keep Them Watching with Great Content 15  
  • 16. Programming & ProducingThe First 15 SecondsExamplesEngage First, Brand Second Branding as Compelling Content•  /sxephil •  /CollegeHumorCompelling Openings•  /Vsauce (3 openings) •  /FoodWishes •  You! 16  
  • 17. Programming & ProducingThe First 15 SecondsHow-To Steps1. Understand the engagement & viewing trends of your 3. Experiment with variationscontent Try different approaches and see what works best to keep peopleUse tools available in Analytics to better understand how your videos watching your video and decrease early abandonment.are performing in terms of engagement and audience retention. Shortattention spans or ‘drop-offs’ in attention or retention at the beginning ofthe video reflect a need to optimize the first 15 seconds of the 4. Place compelling content firstvideo(s). Whatever approach you take, the first 15 seconds of your video needs to be compelling, engrossing, or entertaining enough to get your2. Determine the right ‘hook’ or opening for your content viewers to commit to continue watching the rest of the video.and audienceAll content is different so determine the best use for the beginning ofyour videos. Depending on your category, content, and currentengagement trends, your approach to the beginning of your videos willvary. Use Audience Retention graphs available in Analytics to track changes in how your audience is viewing your content. Optimizing the beginning of your video should increase viewing time and attention spans, while decreasing drop-offs at the beginning of your videos. 17  
  • 18. Programming & ProducingCalls to ActionStrategy:Direct viewers during the video to take actions that can help build audience.Why It Works:Online video is an interactive experience. Prompting your viewers to take actionwill lead to more activity and help you build engagement and audience.How To Do It:Accomplished through production and/or annotations. Time Cost Effect Impact Optimization Type •  Engagement •  Subscribers •  Video Ranking Minimal: 0 – 5 Minutes •  Views 18  
  • 19. Programming & ProducingCalls to ActionWatching content online is an interactive and social experience and content creators rely on the actions oftheir audience to help them succeed - but the many viewers won’t act unless you prompt them.Videos you produce and publish should have specific Calls to Action (CTA). Depending on the message, youcan use the beginning, middle and end of the video to direct the actions of your viewers. CTAs should beminimal and simple. Too many prompts can cause confusion. The goal is to make it as easy as possible forviewers to perform an actionImportant Actions to Direct Your Viewers to Take on YouTubeSubscribe Like / Add to Favorites / Share•  Videos should have a CTA for the viewer to subscribe to your •  Asking viewers to Like, Favorite or Share the video, helps it appear channel. more places across the site.•  Give them reasons to subscribe: more great videos every week, •  ‘Likes’ and ‘favorites’ from your viewers get broadcast out to their never miss an episode, etc. community, which draws new viewers to your video. •  Viewers sharing your video on social media broadcasts it to all theirVisit Your Channel or Watch More Videos friends and followers.•  Encourage the viewer to watch more content and direct them to how Comments to do it.•  Tell people about your channel and everything that it has to offer. •  Ask your viewers questions about the video and encourage them to leave a comment.•  Invite viewers to watch a related video or the next episode in a •  Asking a specific question or an ‘A vs. B’ choice will increase the playlist. comments. These prompts are a great way to guide the conversation that will take place in the comments. Remember that it is a violation of YouTube Terms of Service and Community Guidelines to incentivize clicks on video features in any way (i.e. give-aways or prizes for liking or favoriting a video) 19  
  • 20. Programming & ProducingCalls to ActionThere are many ways to communicate with your audience and include Calls to Action inyour videos. In many cases, talking to the audience can be the most powerful but there aremany effective ways to prompt your viewers to take some action.Methods and Types of Call to Actions in Your VideosTo Camera Host-Mentions In-Video Graphics and ‘End-Cards’•  Talking directly to the camera in a genuine manner can get the •  You can use graphical overlays and other graphics in your videos to audience to listen and act. Having the talent of the video, the host or prompt for specific CTAs. a character talking to their audience and prompting them to take some action is important to include in videos. •  Build in graphics for your videos to encourage subscribes, commenting, or shares. You can use the ‘spotlight’ annotation to make these graphics clickable once the video is uploaded.Annotations•  See the ‘Annotations’ section for more details. (pg. 47) •  Create a video ‘end-card’ to appear at the end of your videos that directs the viewer to more content, encourages them to subscribe, or to visit your channel page. You can create a template that builds•  Use annotations when you don’t want to have your characters ‘break consistency for the end of your videos that directs the audience to the fourth wall’ of your video. take specific actions.•  Annotations are a great way to include CTAs in your video when they aren’t part of the video’s content. Video Descriptions•  Use annotations to update and add new CTAs to older videos. •  See ‘Metadata’ section for more details. (pg. 39) •  Use space available in the video’s description to include messaging and links for your viewers to act on. Annotations can optimize repurposed content to include important CTAs. •  Use links to get your audience to subscribe, go to your channel page, start a playlist, or visit your site and social media. 20  
  • 21. Programming & ProducingCalls to ActionExamplesSubscribe•  /MysterGuitarMan •  /DailyGrace •  You!Ask a Specific Question More Content (Annotations)•  /KnowYourMeme •  /eHow Remember that it is a violation of YouTube Terms of Service and Community Guidelines to incentivize clicks on video features in any way (i.e give-aways or prizes for liking or favoriting a video) 21  
  • 22. Programming & ProducingCalls to ActionHow-To Steps1. Determine desired actions 3. Include / add call to actions to the videoDecide what actions you want your viewers to take for each video. Videos should have a call-to-action. Keep these important elements inPrompts for key community actions such as subscribing and watching mind when shooting the video, creating packaging, writing the videomore content should be included in most videos, but assess the right description, and when adding annotations.actions for your content and overall objectives.2. Choose the right method and placementDepending on your content, decide if talking to camera, host mentions,use of graphics, and/or using annotations is the right method to getyour audience to perform actions.Decide where in the video each CTA should appear to be mosteffective, without distracting the viewer. Keep in mind that you don’twant to direct the viewers away from the video before they finishwatching. Use the Subscription graph and Community Engagement graphs in Analytics to track changes in viewer actions in response to your CTAs. Including CTAs in your video should lead to increased community actions taken by viewers including subscribing to your channel, favoriting, liking, and commenting. Remember that it is a violation of YouTube Terms of Service and Community Guidelines to incentivize clicks on video features in any way (i.e give-aways or prizes for liking or favoriting a video) 22  
  • 23. Programming & ProducingRegular Schedule & FrequencyStrategy:Release content frequently on a recurring schedule and maintain activity on thechannel. React to trending topics with relevant content.Why It Works:Frequency of uploads and other platform engagement affects the algorithm andkeeps an audience’s interest. To build an audience, “A consistent audiencerequires consistent content.”How To Do It:Find the right release schedule for your audience. Maximize content gainedfrom production investment. Time Cost Effect Impact Optimization Type •  Channel Views •  Subscribers •  Video Ranking Medium: 1+ Hours •  Views 23  
  • 24. Programming & ProducingRegular Schedule & FrequencyThere’s a lot of great videos to explore on YouTube, and so Get the Most from Your Productionsremaining relevant, engaging and maintaining the interestand attentions of your audience is important. The activity of •  Make the most of your production investments. Be creative and resourceful about how you create content to find ways to be able toyour channel’s feed is how you keep your audience publish more regularly. Ways to get more videos from yourengaged. ‘Feed’ your Channel’s Feed! production investment include creating supplements your larger productions, and using resource-saving production techniques. •  Create videos that make something new and engaging for you audience using current content: making-of, bloopers, behind-the-Frequency of Uploads and Engagement scenes, recaps, best of countdowns, trailers, vlogs, comment videos, and more.•  Publishing content regularly and often will improve your ranking in the algorithm and help you build viewership. A good level to aim for •  Create shorter versions of long-form content to act as teasers, is a minimum of one video per week, but the right amount of content trailers, or previews of longer videos. These bite-size versions depends on your audience, your goals, and your content. This introduce your longer content to viewers, and get them interested in frequency will provide your audience with new content regularly, and watching the full-versions. keep them coming back often.•  Keep your feed active for your audience. An active feed is sustained Use annotations, playlists, and other linking to get by uploading videos, but also by your engagement on the platform in viewers from the previews to the actual video. the forms of commenting, favoriting, liking, and managing your playlists.•  Maintain content and engagement with your channel in-between “Consistent audience breaks in regularly releasing content. If you have seasons, or have a break in producing regular programming, find ways to maintain your requires consistent content!” - Freddie W., Top YouTuber audience during the down time. Your audience’s interest must be sustained between your main videos. 24  
  • 25. Programming & ProducingRegular Schedule & FrequencySome of the same trends and viewer interests that drive television Timely Publishingviewership are applicable to the web. Regular release schedules,programming, and timely publishing are all important in online video. •  ‘React’ to trending topics with relevant content when it makes sense for your audience. Don’t be too locked in to your schedule. Timing is important in online video and being part of what’s going viral, rising search trends, or breaking news can be critical for certain content.Set a Schedule News and politics, sports, commentary, and opinion content can thrive on topicality.•  Release videos on a set day of the week, if possible. Releasing •  Adding this reactive and timely supplemental content to your regular videos on a recurring schedule helps build a structure to your channel that an audience can rely on. It can be easier to retain programming can help your channel find new audiences. audiences and keep them coming back to your channel when they know when new episodes will be coming out.•  Support programming with a schedule. If you have varying types of videos on your channel or multiple shows in one place, use a set schedule for each type of series to act as programming for your channels’ various offerings. Use YouTube’s scheduled publishing feature to build your schedule. 25  
  • 26. Programming & ProducingRegular Schedule & FrequencyExamplesSupplemental Content (Behind-the-Scenes / Teaser) Maintaining an Active Feed with Uploads and More•  /TheMomsViewSupplemental Content (Comments Video)•  /BarelyPolitical 26  
  • 27. Programming & ProducingRegular Schedule & FrequencyHow-To Steps1. Find the right schedule for your content 2. Get the most of your production investmentThe right schedule depends on your category and content. There may Find ways to cull more content from your shoots and existing trends that your schedule can be based on. For example, Use production techniques to minimize production time and maximizemovies typically get released on Fridays, so if you review or provide the useable content.commentary on films, this calendar may influence the right day of theweek for new videos. Create supplemental content for your big projects or videos that are less production intensive. Capture behind-the-scenes footage, keep aIf you set a schedule, make it clear to the audience and new viewers log of your bloopers, or create vlog-style update or comment videos.when and how often episodes are released. Remind the audience inthe videos, in the episode description, or through other branding onyour channel. 3. Maximize your frequency More content will lead to more viewership and better ranking in algorithms. Release content consistently to build and retain a consistent audience. Use other engagement methods (commenting, playlists, etc.) to keep your channel active for your audience. Maintain content and activity during breaks between regular publishing or seasons of a show. Find what days your channel sees peaks in views or if your audience follows your schedule by looking at the viewership graphs available in Analytics. Learn about how many views you gain by adding more content to your channel, and find the right balance between production investment and views gained. 27  
  • 28. Programming & ProducingTent-pole ProgrammingStrategy:Create, release, and/or package content that is themed around tent-poleevents.Why It Works:Tent-pole events drive search trends, editorial opportunities, audience interests,and advertiser campaigns.How To Do It:Create and publish content according to a programming calendar. Use playlistsand other packaging to angle your content for tent-pole events. Time Cost Effect Impact Optimization Type •  Promotion •  Views •  Discovery Moderate: Less than 1 Hour •  External Site Traffic 28  
  • 29. Programming & ProducingTent-pole ProgrammingWhy does Discovery channel have Shark Week every year? Why do a Program Your Contentlot sitcoms have a Halloween themed episode at the end of October?Why does the Today Show have relationship experts on the week •  Create a programming calendar and identify the tent-pole eventsbefore Valentine’s Day? The answer to these questions is: Tent-pole that are relevant to your channel and audience.Programming. •  Create videos around these upcoming events to take advantage ofTent-pole events are the cultural events that promotion, sponsors/ promotional and revenue opportunities, and capitalize on audienceadvertisers, and viewing trends orbit around throughout the year. Big and search releases, sports, holidays and niche events should act as guidesfor the content you produce. This strategy can apply to all partners. Any •  Package previous content in new ways for tent-pole events. Reusechannel can create or participate in tent-poles relevant to their specific older footage with newly created content to create new videos.audience. Create playlists to re-organize your videos to be programmed for upcoming tent-pole events. Titles and tags can help rebrand a video for tent-pole events. Make use of your archives, where it is relevant Get Ahead of the Buzz •  Release tent-pole related content at least several days prior to the event. Online video is different than television and film because a video posted online has a ‘long-tail.’ The weeks leading up to an event, ‘the pre-buzz,’ is just as important as the date of the actual event, maybe more important. The video will still be there when the event arrives and afterward, but it can have more momentum if it was released early. •  The right time to release depends on how much sustained interest there is around any particular event. 29  
  • 30. Programming & ProducingTent-pole ProgrammingHow-To Steps1. Create a programming calendar 3. Perform blog outreachCreate a programming calendar for upcoming months. Identify the key Send your tent-pole videos to relevant blogs, sites, and onlinetent-pole events that are relevant to your channel and meaningful to communities offering them content for their readers.your audience. Provide short descriptions of the content and why it would be a great fitIdentify (or invent your own) tent-pole events where you may want to with the sites readers. Include links and embed codes in your outreachdedicate more resources, time, or content. emails. (see Blog Outreach section, pg. 75)2. Release tent-pole related videosCreate videos for the tent-pole events and be strategic about when topublish your tent-pole related videos.Apply your extra time and resources, use of talent, or collaborationswith other channels to be for tent-pole videos that will benefit wideinterest from viewers and search trends.Devote blocks of time to celebrate or produce special content aroundmilestones or ‘signature’ events that you invent for your channel andaudience. Make anniversaries into special events or assign certainweeks (or months) special programming. Track changes in viewership as a result of programming your content by using the viewership data available in Analytics. Use Traffic Sources information to track views coming from search, homepage, featured video, or blogs for the videos you’ve made based on tent-pole events. 30  
  • 31. Programming & ProducingCross-promotion & CollaborationStrategy:Work with other creators and cross-promote content between channels.Why It Works:Cross-promotion directs viewers to content or channels, and collaboration withother creators can be one of the most powerful ways to reach new audiencesand build views.How To Do It:Create a strategy to cross-promote your content to relevant audiences. Findand reach out to channels with similar audiences to plan creativecollaborations. Time Cost Effect Impact Optimization Type •  Channel Views •  Subscribers •  Views Major: Full Day or More 31  
  • 32. Programming & ProducingCross-promotion & CollaborationCross-promotion across channels and collaborations with other online General Best Practicescreators are some of the most effective methods of building audienceand subscribers. Accessing new audiences on YouTube begins with •  Cross-promote and collaborate with other channels that are relevantfinding the channels where those audiences are already engaged. to your audience or attract similar demographics.No matter what kind of channel you are – vlogger, branded, comedy, •  Appear, guest-star, or contribute to other channels’ content and vice-music - it should be a priority to identify similar or relevant channels that versa. Leverage each other’s audience to find new could work with on cross-promotion and collaboration in a way thatmakes sense for both channels. You must do the initial work to build •  Be creative with ‘remote’ collaborations. Record video chats, utilizeyour content, your channel, and your audience into something that video-responses, or incorporate video from one another on yourother channels want to support or be a part of. channel. •  Make it easy for the viewers to get from one place to the other. UseMeekaKitty Promotes Her Guest Musicians annotations, playlists, links in description, and clear direction within the video on what the viewer needs to do to watch more. •  Be active on your channel during any cross-promotion period. Respond to comments of new viewers. Make a good first impression by showcasing your best content and interacting with the new viewers. For example, brand your channel in a new way or feature your best videos or playlists. (See ‘Channel Optimizations’ in section two, pg. 57) Weezer and the Muppet Studio 32  
  • 33. Programming & ProducingCross-promotion & CollaborationIn-video Promotion Channel Promotion•  Guest Star: Appearing or guest starring in other channels’ content •  Recommendation Activity: Like, Favorite, or Comment on the is a great way to work with other creators and channels. You can videos of other channel that you want to promote. This passive combine elements from each of your channels, or simply fall into promotion will appear in your activity feed for your subscribers. another channel’s theme completely.•  Shout Out: A shout out can be illustrated with actual clips/ teasers from the channel that’s being promoted or a simple host Subscriber Box Sharing recommendation can go far. Find clips that are short, surprising, or provide cliff hangers that make people more interested in following •  The “other channels” module the call to action to check out the channel. on your channel page is a great way to link otherMake sure to link to the other channel using annotations and links in channels you manage or wantthe description. to promote. When users subscribe to your channel they are also offered the opportunity to subscribe to the channels you have listed. •  Arrange cross-promotion for yourself by getting placement in other channels’ lists and featuring others in your own.. Use to identify successful channels and compare subscriber growth. 33  
  • 34. Programming & ProducingCross-promotion & CollaborationShared Topics•  Organize and create videos with other producers that are related, complementary, or supplemental. Focus both sets of content on the same tent-pole event or create complementary videos that have similar tones / subjects / perspectives.•  Make the viewer aware of all channels involved in the cross-promotion through playlists, annotations, mentions, video descriptions, and links.•  Consider linking multiple videos in a ‘chain’ that completes a circle. (i.e. producer A ends his or her video with a teaser or recommendation to check out producer B’s video, which in turn links to producer C, and so on back to A.) No matter where a viewer begins, all videos in the loop are in a position to gain new viewers and potential subscribers. 34  
  • 35. Programming & ProducingCross-promotion & CollaborationExamplesGuest Star Collaboration and Cross-Promotion•  /FreddieW and /EpicMealTime •  /Weezer and /TheMuppetStudio “Part of making it on the internet is working with a lot of people, that is definitely essential.” - KassemG, Top YouTuber 35  
  • 36. Programming & ProducingCross-promotion & CollaborationHow-To Steps1. Build your channel’s appeal 3. Create engaging cross-promotion opportunities andBefore reaching out to collaborate with other channels, build your value collaboration videoswith great content and an engaged audience. Create collaboration videos with channels and creators with similarCreate something exceptional, unique, compelling, or special with your content and relevant that will make other channels interested in supporting or Set clear objectives of what each creator wants to get out of the cross-working with you. This can extend beyond just content to include promotion. Work closely with each other to ensure each channel isproduction support, access to talent, shoot locations, etc. maximizing the opportunity and benefits of working together. Fine tune your channel, content, and engagement during cross- Having a unique contribution is one way to attract promotions to provide the best experience for new viewers to make collaborations when starting a channel. them become subscribed fans. Consistently update and refresh less-intensive promotion strategies2. Know and find relevant creators and channels such as featuring channels in your “Other Channels” list and promotingKnow the other channels where similar audiences to your own are with your recommendation activity.spending their time. Track the effectiveness and results of cross-promotions by examining viewership graphs and subscriber changes in Analytics. Assess the ‘stickiness’ of your content/channel and the relevancy of the cross- promotion by measuring subscribers gained from the additional views. How many new viewers were retained weeks after the promotion? 36  
  • 37. Programming & ProducingProgramming & ProducingChecklist Create great content that is unique, compelling and entertaining or informative. Optimize the first 15 seconds of your video. Include specific calls to action in the video or through annotations. Set a recurring schedule for your channel and maximize your production investments to optimize how often you are able to release content. Create a programming calendar and identify tent-pole events that are relevant to your audience, around which you can create content. Identify channels with similar content and/or relevant audiences and work with them to create meaningful cross-promotion opportunities and collaboration videos. Use Analytics to better understand your audience, improve your content, and help you develop effective programming and production strategies. 37  
  • 38. Section TwoPublishing & Optimization39 Metadata44 Thumbnails47 Annotations52 Playlists & Video Responses57 Channel Page63 Reaching All Audiences68 Checklist   38  
  • 39. Publishing & OptimizationMetadataStrategy:Write optimized titles, tags, and descriptions for your content.Why It Works:Metadata helps YouTube index your content and is critical to building viewsfrom search and suggested videos.How To Do It:Use optimized keywords and formatting when writing metadata for your videos. Time Cost Effect Impact Optimization Type •  Video Ranking •  Views •  Search Traffic Minimal: 0 – 5 Minutes •  Suggested Video Traffic 39  
  • 40. Publishing & OptimizationMetadataYouTube is the world’s 2nd largest search engine; optimize your video Optimization Tips Overviewto take advantage of this fact. Metadata is the information thatsurrounds your video: Title, Tags, Description, Thumbnail. This set of (See appendix for keyword resources)data informs the YouTube algorithm of a video’s content, indexing it forsearch, features, related videos, and ad-serving. Title •  Compelling •  Keywords first •  Branding at end •  Accurately represents content Description •  Optimize the first 1-2 sentences •  Most compelling info first •  Include keywords, links •  Channel description, helpful information Tags •  Mix of common & specific •  Ordering •  Variations and plentiful •  Use quotes for keyword phrases: “short film” Metadata as Packaging Metadata can also be used as packaging or rebranding a video. Adding in relevant keywords to the title of an archive video can help you repurpose the content for new search trends, or tent-pole events. Remember that it is a violation of YouTube Terms of Service to use misleading metadata on your videos 40  
  • 41. Publishing & OptimizationMetadataTitle TagsTitles are an important tool to describe the content and compel users toclick on your video. Think of them as taglines or magazine headlines •  Create a set of ‘standard tags’ for your channel that can be appliedthat will peak interest of potential viewers, but they need to be to any video you publish. These tags should be general tags thatformatted and written with keywords and the algorithm in mind. apply to most of the content your produce (i.e. filmmaking, animation, comedy, “Funny Videos,” “Pet Videos” etc.)•  Include relevant and most compelling keywords to maximize ‘clickability’ and search traffic, but always accurately portray content. •  Write tags that are a mix of specific and general keywords that are relevant to the video’s content.•  Place keywords first in the title and branding (such as your show or channel name) at the end. •  Select a reasonable number of tags that most closely reflect your video content.•  Actively update and optimize titles of catalogue videos to remain relevant and gain views in the ‘long tail’ of a video. •  Actively update and optimize archive videos with relevant tags when new search trends emerge. Formatting •  Properly format tags to ensure proper indexing of video. •  Combination of both general and specific keywords. •  Use quotes for phrases: “harry potter” •  Mirror the title of the video, using same word order in tags. Only add tags to the tag section of your metadata. Adding additional tags to the description of your video constitutes spam and may result in the removal of your video or demotion in search, or account termination 41  
  • 42. Publishing & OptimizationMetadataDescription •  Include a recurring ‘Keyword Tagline’ in episode descriptions. TheDescriptions inform both the viewer and the YouTube algorithm of a keyword tagline is a few sentences that describe your channel, butvideo’s content, and can be a good place to add additional information is written to include several search-driven keywords. Repeating thisnot available in the video. Every video you publish will reach new tagline in episode descriptions will inform first-time viewers aboutviewers. Your description is another key opportunity for you to let these your channel, assist with including the right keywords, and increasenew viewers know about your channel and everything it has to offer. your videos’ search relevancy.Provide links to visit your channel, subscribe or watch more content. •  State what the release schedule of your channel is in episode•  Begin your description with the most relevant information and descriptions. compelling language. Only the first few sentences of your description show up ‘above the fold’ on a video watch page and next •  Follow a structure or template for all your video descriptions to to the thumbnail in search results. create uniformity for your audience, as well as increase the relevancy of your videos to one another for related video rankings.•  Write your description to include the the keywords used in the title and tags as well as additional relevant keywords.•  Always include: •  Link to your channel page •  Subscription link •  Links to related content, or to sites/videos/channels/users referenced in the video. •  Links for social media. •  Links should always include the ‘http://’ to make them hyperlinks. 42  
  • 43. Publishing & OptimizationMetadataHow-To Steps1. Utilize keyword resource tools 3. Optimize metadata for every new upload (and archives)Use the keywords generator tools to help you generate and test Create a compelling, accurate, and keyword-driven title. Keywords first,keywords for your uploads and/or channel. brand or show name after. Fill in as many relevant and appropriate tags as possible. Write a mix of2. Create ‘Standard Keywords,’ ‘Keyword Tagline’ and common and specific tags by adding your ‘Standard Keywords’ and specific tags about the episode. Follow proper formatting. Use keyword‘Standard Channel Links’ generator tools.Based on your channel’s content, theme, and audience, create a list of Write a thorough, helpful, and keyword-driven episode description.standard keywords that apply to your channel and most uploads. These Write compelling first sentences of your description. Include relevant orkeywords should be things that are categorical, genres, broad topics, helpful information about the episode or your channel. Include yourshow name, etc. ‘Keyword Tagline’, list of links.Write 2-4 sentences that explains your channel and includes keywords Rebrand or continually optimize archive videos by updating thethat are relevant to your content. Include when new episodes are metadata to reflect new search trends, tent-pole events, or otherreleased and other relevant information. keywords that may have become relevant to the content.Create a list of links that can appear in episode descriptions. Use the Traffic Sources data available in Analytics track changes in views coming from search traffic and suggested video traffic after you optimize the metadata. Use keyword tools and Google Analytics to better understand what keywords are driving viewers to your content. Using third-party software or agencies to help with tags, subscribers or view counts may be a violation of Terms of Service. 43  
  • 44. Publishing & OptimizationThumbnail OptimizationStrategy:Create great, high-quality custom thumbnails for your videos that accuratelyrepresent the content.Why It Works:Thumbnails act as mini-marketing posters for your content and are important toattracting clicks on your videos.How To Do It:Design and upload custom thumbnails for new videos. Update archive videothumbnails. Time Cost Effect Impact Optimization Type •  Video Ranking •  Views •  Search Traffic Moderate: Less than 1 Hour •  Suggested Video Traffic 44  
  • 45. Publishing & OptimizationThumbnail OptimizationThumbnails, along with your video title, act as mini marketing postersfor your content on YouTube. You should always create customposterframes to be uploaded along with the video file. There are a fewgeneral guidelines to follow, but the right poster-frame depends on whatthe video is about.•  Clear, in-focus, hi-resolution (640px x 360px min., 16:9 aspect ratio)•  Bright, high-contrast•  Close-ups of faces•  Visually compelling imagery•  Well-framed, good composition•  Foreground stands out from background•  Looks great at both small and large sizes.•  Accurately represents the contentThumbnails are important for search, related video traffic, and channel Not Optimal Optimalpage optimization. This visual snapshot of your video is one of the mostimportant optimizations for attracting views on YouTube. Make sure to upload high-resolution thumbnails so they appear crisp and clear throughout the site. The thumbnail should accurately represent the content included in your video and should not be overly sexually provocative. 45  
  • 46. Publishing & OptimizationThumbnail OptimizationHow-To Steps1. Keep thumbnail optimization in mind when shooting 2. Create a great thumbnailShoot your videos to make the content translate into a great thumbnail. Using images from the video and supplemental images (where relevant/appropriate) to create a custom thumbnail that shows off theProper lighting, framing the shot, and capturing compelling imagery best aspects of the video.when you shoot will provide you with better material to work with whencreating a thumbnail. Using photo-editing software to resize, modify, or combine images together in the frame.Consider taking photographs during your shoots to capture images forthumbnails. Apply effects such as adjusting the contrast and brightness of the image to make it stand-out and make the colors brighter. Preview your thumbnail design at the actual size it will appear on the site to know if the image will still be eye-catching at smaller scales. Track changes in viewership after you optimize your thumbnails. Use the Viewership graph and Traffic Sources information available in Analytics to track any increase in viewership coming from search, homepage feed, or suggested video where thumbnails are important for attracting clicks. 46  
  • 47. Publishing & OptimizationAnnotationsStrategy:Use annotations on your videos to increase viewership, engagement, andsubscribers.Why It Works:Annotations are a unique feature to YouTube and can help you keep viewerswatching more content, increase community actions on your videos, andacquire new subscribers.How To Do It:Add relevant and helpful annotations to all your videos after upload. Useannotations on archive videos to direct traffic to new initiatives or content. Time Cost Effect Impact Optimization Type •  Video Ranking •  Engagement Minimal: •  Subscribers 1 2 3 4 5 0 – 5 Minutes •  Views 47  
  • 48. Publishing & OptimizationAnnotationsAnnotations are text overlays that you can place on YouTube videos. Types of AnnotationsThere are numerous uses for annotations and producers areconsistently finding new, creative, and strategic ways to apply them to •  You can customize many differenttheir videos. aspects of annotations including: size, color, type, link, and timing of annotations.Annotations Use Cases •  Different types of annotations are•  Supply additional information. useful for different needs and strategies. Find what works best for•  Act as a dynamic, editable text your videos. layer. •  Use spotlight annotations to make•  Be used as navigational areas within the video clickable. elements. (to certain time- code, or Next/Previous •  You can customize many different aspects of annotations including: episode) size, color, type, link, and timing of annotations.•  Act as subscribe button within •  When a spotlight annotations is used, the text only appears when the video. the viewers hover over it with their mouse. Only a light outline of the annotation is shown when the viewer does not hover over it. Using•  Make areas of your video clickable or interactive. this type can be a great way to include unobtrusive annotations that are still easily clickable for the viewer.•  Link the viewer to your channel page from within the video. •  Make annotations clickable and link to various places or actions on•  Ask specific questions to the audience to respond to in the YouTube. You can also set annotations to open a new window when comments. clicked, keeping the viewer from leaving the original video.•  Encourage community activity such as liking or favoriting the video.•  Link to other content: videos, playlists, channels, full-versions.•  Dynamically add content to your old videos. 48  
  • 49. Publishing & OptimizationAnnotationsGeneral Best Practices•  Avoid annotations in the lower-third of the video. The advertisement •  Make sure to write and place text so it looks nice and reads well on overlay can obscure annotations placed there. the screen.•  Be careful not to obstruct the actual content. •  Avoid prompting the viewer or having them click away from the video too early in the video. Depending on what the annotation is•  Use your best judgment to determine timing, placement, style, and being used for or the action you want the viewer to take, there is a how many annotations you should include in your episodes. Don’t proper placement and timing. Consider using the “Open in a new bombard the viewer as it will feel ‘spammy’ and will have an adverse window’ option for annotations that are hyperlinked, so the viewer is effect. not taken away from their current video. When linking to a video that you want to play within itsExample ‘End Card’ - Spotlight annotations make graphic clickable. playlist add “&list=(playlist ID HERE)” to the end of the url.•  /Smosh •  /HISHEOther Uses: 49  
  • 50. Publishing & OptimizationAnnotationsConsistent Annotations for Navigation Other Annotation StrategiesSome channels have found success in using an annotation template:the same annotations, in the same placement across all of their videos. •  Front of episode call to actions: Ask viewers to ‘like’ or ‘favorite’ theSuch as: video. •  Ask a question. Asking a specific question is often more effective.•  Subscribe Button - Makes it easy for viewers to subscribe right from your videos. When clicked, this annotation adds your channel to the •  Related videos or other content that is referenced in the video. viewers’ subscriptions. •  Additional or supplemental information about the content.•  Newest / Next / Previous – Links to another video in the series or to newest video. Including an annotation in your videos that links to •  Subscribe and other CTAs repeated at the end of the episode. your newest content will leverage your entire catalogue to drive traffic to your most recent upload. •  Be creative! Annotations can be used in many ways and you should always consider how to use this unique feature to make your content better and more strategic. The YouTube player can sometimes obscure annotations in the extreme bottom of the frame. Avoid annotation placements here. 50  
  • 51. Publishing & OptimizationAnnotationsHow-To Steps1. Learn how to create annotations 3. Update annotations on high-performing archive videosUnderstand the different types and uses of annotations, as well as how Add and update annotations on high-performing archive videos to helpto create and edit them. leverage these view to new initiatives or new uploads. Use annotations to repackage old content for new purposes along with2. Add annotations to new uploads after publishing updated metadata.Determine the right use of annotations for your content and audience.Avoid creating distracting annotations or too many. Use annotations forcalls to action encouraging the viewers to take certain community 4. Be creativeactions such as favoriting, liking, and sharing the video. Experiment with annotations to use them in new ways that will help youDecide if any static annotations make sense for your videos. Add a increase engagement, build audience, or simply make your content‘Subscribe’ annotation and/or a ‘Newest Episode’ annotation that is better and more compelling.present for the entire video to provide easy navigation for the viewer at Include elements in the video with the intention of enhancing withany moment. clickable annotations after upload.Utilize annotations at the end of the video to direct viewers to anothervideo, your channel, or to some other action such as subscribing.Create an ‘End-Card’ to addend your videos and use annotations tomake it clickable. Annotations will affect metrics depending on what you use them for and what actions you’re directing viewers to take. If you use annotations for community actions, subscribers and linking to other videos, track overall growth of these metrics. Focus on one specific action or initiative to measure specific effectiveness. 51  
  • 52. Publishing & OptimizationPlaylists & Video ResponsesStrategy:Organize your content into sets of videos using playlists and video responses.Create show separation, themed content, or curated content using playlists.Why It Works:Playlists help organize your content into meaningful sets of videos which willincrease the number of videos a viewer watches and improve navigation of yourcontent.How To Do It:Create playlists for different sets of videos. Add new uploads to relevantplaylists and set them as video responses to other videos. Time Cost Effect Impact Optimization Type •  Engagement •  Subscribers •  Video Ranking Moderate: Less than 1 Hour •  Views 1 2 3 4 5 52  
  • 53. Publishing & OptimizationPlaylists & Video ResponsesYou can create playlists using your own content, other channels’ videos, Playlists as Viewing Experienceor a combination of both. Playlists can be used as an organizational toolfor content, or creators can produce playlists as a viewing experience •  Creators can also use playlists to string together videos to create afor an audience. They can be featured on your channel, and they show long viewing experience – long-form content as created by stringingup in search results and suggested videos. individual videos together.Playlists as Organization •  You can create an intro video specific to your playlist to introduce the set of videos you’ve compiled.Playlists are a great way to organize your videos into groups andviewing sets. If you have multiple shows or themed content on your •  You can also create ‘interstitial’ videos to appear between videoschannel, playlists create organization. Utilize playlists to make your you curate in a playlist to provide context and easier to navigate. Sometimes called a ‘hosted’ playlist.•  Separate different shows into their own playlists to feature them on These playlist-specific videos will also show up as stand- your channel and connect videos together for viewers. alone videos on the site; consider setting these videos as ‘Unlisted’ or determine how to use annotations,•  Create sets of videos that are grouped together for a specific theme messaging, & metadata to convey to viewers that they are or tent-pole event. Use the title and thumbnails to brand it. part of a playlist.•  Build playlists to feature your most viewed content with newest uploads to connect your catalogue views to new videos. •  Add ‘playlist commentary’ to each video included by commenting on the video while viewing it in playlist mode. The comments appear•  Set a playlist to be a “series playlist” if you want lock-in a group of underneath the video for viewers watching the playlist. videos as a rigid set where the videos will always appear together. This option is ideal for serial content. Videos in a series playlist can Playlist in Search NOT be included in other Series playlists.Playlist on Channel 53  
  • 54. Publishing & OptimizationPlaylists & Video ResponsesOptimized Playlists & Video Responses Promote Your Playlists•  Utilize metadata strategies and keywords when titling and writing a •  Creating or adding videos to a playlist will be published to your feed, description for playlists. notifying your subscribers. Adding to your playlists is another way to be active on your feed and broadcast your content.•  You can reorder videos to create the best linear viewing experience for your audience. •  Upload a video to introduce the playlist to your subscribers and use annotations, messaging, and links to get them to watch it.•  Attribute videos included in your playlist to their creators by linking to them in your description. •  Feature playlists on your channel page and embed on your site.•  Manage video responses on your videos. Users can set video •  Encourage your audience to comment on your playlists as their response to your content, if you want, or you can restrict to just your comments will include a link to your playlist. own content. Use the right urls when promoting videos from a playlist or•  Using Video Responses allows you to populate the space around entire playlists. To link to a video in ‘autoplay playlist your videos with your own related content. mode,’ make sure the url includes “&list=”. You can get the right url from your playlist page’s ‘Share’ widget. A•  Ask viewers to submit video responses as a form of viewer video url set to play within a playlist looks something like: interaction. of Playlist Experience) Viewer Comment on Playlist 54  
  • 55. Publishing & OptimizationPlaylists & Video ResponsesExamplesPlaylists on Channel ‘Added to Playlist’ in Feed‘Hosted’ Playlist Example 55  
  • 56. Publishing & OptimizationPlaylists & Video ResponsesHow-To Steps1. Set a strategy or use of playlists for your content and 3. Add new videos and maintain playlistschannel Add new videos to relevant playlists at upload and maintain currentEach channel is different, so find the right use of playlists and video playlists to keep them fresh, engaging, and relevant to your audience orresponses for your content and audience. new viewers.Decide if your playlist strategy should or will affect how you produce Add new uploads as video responses to relevant videos or to archivecontent or publish it, (i.e. videos produced for a playlist should follow a videos that can drive a lot of traffic.structure that is tailored for watching a set of connected videos.) 4. Organize arrangement and display of playlists on2. Create playlists for your channel Channel PageCreate different playlists for grouping and organizing your videos into Arrange and organize playlists on your channel page to makesets or themes. navigation easy for channel visitors.Follow metadata strategies and optimizations for the playlists. Usekeywords for a compelling title, optimize tags of the playlist, and write akeyword-driven and informative description for the playlist.Choose the best thumbnail from the videos in the playlist to act as theplaylist’s primary image. Track changes to total viewership after creating playlists. Use YouTube Analytics, viewership graphs, and channel visit data to assess how your channel visitors are consuming content on your channel page. You can see views happening within playlists for specific videos in Analytics. 56  
  • 57. Publishing & OptimizationChannel Page OptimizationStrategy:Optimize and design your channel page’s avatar, metadata, layout andbackground. Set the correct sharing settings for your channel’s Feed.Why It Works:A well-designed, organized, and search-optimized channel page will attract moreviewers, make your channel a richer destination for subscribers, and create aprofessional look.How To Do It:Design a custom background, optimize channel metadata, utilize channeltemplates, and broadcast the right interactions to subscribers through the feed. Time Cost Effect Impact Optimization Type •  Channel Views •  Subscribers •  Time Spent Moderate: Less than 1 Hour •  Views 1 2 3 4 5 57  
  • 58. Publishing & OptimizationChannel Page OptimizationYouTube channel pages can be optimized in a number of ways to help Discoverabilitymake your channel a discoverable destination that offers consistent,current content. When setting up and optimizing your channel page, you •  Upload a square high-resolution (1600px x 1600px) avatar that isshould be thinking about visual branding, channel metadata, and recognizable at smaller resolutions. This avatar will be yourchannel organization. channel’s billboard throughout the site.Branding •  Accurately describe your channel and capture relevant channel keywords when writing the channel description. Include relevant•  Create a custom, visually-compelling background image for the information such as upload schedule and details about the content. channel page. •  The first 45 characters of the description appears in the channel•  Feature your brand’s personalities. Make the audience feel like they browser and across the site where viewers discover your channel. are connecting with a person or character of your show and not just the brand or logo when they come to the channel. •  You can edit your Channel Page title to best reflect your brand.•  Make use of the image mapping space directly above the channel To maximize channel promotion, concentrate on the header. Determine what links are important to display here and channel avatar and first 45 characters of a channel design this area to gain the most clicks. Links on this banner image description. can link to promote any initiative, on YouTube or off.•  Feature the channels upload schedule into the background image or in the channel description. Announcing your schedule is specially useful for channels that house multiple content series.•  Upload graphics specific to the mobile viewing experience of your channel in the Edit Channel pane.•  Connect social media accounts and link to other sites or channels in the right sidebar of the channel. 58  
  • 59. Publishing & OptimizationChannel Page OptimizationYouTube Channel Pages have two main ways of displaying a channel’svideo content: through the Feed or through the Featured Tab (utilizingchannel templates and the Featured Video module). The feed is animportant promotional tool for your channel – it is displayed on yourchannel page and can be accessed on the homepage for subscribers.The Feed•  The feed broadcasts channel activities to your current subscribers. By default: uploads, liked videos, videos added to playlists, bulletins, comments you make, channels you subscribe to, and favorited videos.•  For creators who do not upload on a weekly schedule, the feed allows an easy way of creating value for subscribers by broadcasting your other activity on the site. This activity in between uploads can help keep your feed active and relevant.•  Consider thinking programmatically with your activity on the site. Broadcast your ‘curation’ activity of other content on a set schedule. Add videos to playlists and ‘Like’ content that your subscribers might enjoy on certain days of the week.•  If you upload a high volume of content or are very active on the site, adjust your sharing settings to make your feed the right balance of uploads and activity to be engaging for your audience.. Broadcasting your activity on the site creates an effective platform to curate content for your audience. Your channel can be the source of great content whether or not you upload it! 59  
  • 60. Publishing & OptimizationChannel Page OptimizationYouTube Channel Pages now come with the ability to organize content •  Choose the right template for your channel to create the bestinto templates. Highlighting playlists, recent uploads, or other channels, experience for your content and schedule.templates allow creators to tailor their channel experience around thecontent that they upload, curate, or want to feature. •  Playlists are more prominent in the new channel design, so find the right playlist strategy to optimize your channel layout. (See Playlist and Video Responses section, pg. 52)Templates, Modules, and Layout •  The Featured Video module is used to highlight one video within a•  Each channel template highlights different types of content. The five channel template. This video can either serve as an introduction to different templates are: your channel’s content, highlight a topical tent-pole event, or surface the latest video in a content series. •  Creator – highlights playlists. Best for creators who curate content into playlists often, have multiple shows on one •  You can set your channel to send subscribers to the feed and non- channel, or who upload multiple clips everyday. subscribers to your Featured Video tab. This will create a unique experience for each type of viewer. If you do set your channel in this •  Blogger – focuses on recent uploads or a featured playlist. way, consider using the featured video player to feature a highlight Best for creators who upload one type of serial content on reel or welcome video of your channel and select the best content their channel and who want viewers to find their most recent layout for this audience. content first. •  Enable the Other Channels module to promote your other channels •  Network – The network template is best for channels that or related channels. This module is a great feature to create cross- want to highlight other channels. Network channels may promotion amongst channels. curate content from multiple channels through playlists and other activity. Channels listed here are also listed as suggested •  Everything – a combination of playlists and highlighted channels when a user subscribes to your channel. channels, the everything template allows creators to highlight, in equal parts, the channel’s own content and other channels’ content that may appeal to subscribers. •  Live – exclusively meant to highlight live-streaming content. (limited to live-stream enabled partners) 60  
  • 61. Publishing & OptimizationChannel Page OptimizationExamplesCreator Template with Other Channels Module enabled Blogger Template with Top Branding Enabled•  /SongsToWearPantsTo •  /BarelyPolitical 61  
  • 62. Publishing & OptimizationChannel Page OptimizationHow-To Steps1. Design a great channel background 2. Optimize channel metadataDesign an attractive background for your channel that features the Write an optimized, accurate channel description including, releasepersonalities, characters, or content of the channel. schedule, show description, and other relevant information. Make your channel’s content clear in the first 45 characters of the description.The channel banner image can be made clickable, so design it to getviewers to click. Ensure your most important links are image mapped in Link to your dot com, social media and other relevant sites.this section.Branding can click offsite: ensure your most important links are in theimage mapped section above the channel. 3. Choose template, enable Featured Video and Other Channels modules, manage FeedUpload graphics for the mobile viewing experience. Explore all available features and modules available for the channelCreate a great avatar image that is relevant to your channel and will be page and use them to highlight the type of content that is most relevanteye-catching in search results. to your audience. Enable the Other Channels module to feature other channels and cross-promote. Enable your recent activity feed and channel comments to increase engagement with your channel. Treat your Feed as another form of content creation, update regularly and ensure highlighted content appeals to subscribers. Track changes to channel viewership as optimizing your channel metadata and thumbnail can attract more clicks in search and increase percentage of views on the channel page. Track subscriber growth. Install Google Analytics on your channel page to help you track visits and time spent etc. 62  
  • 63. Publishing & OptimizationReaching All AudiencesStrategy:Optimize videos and create content to reach the widest audience possible.Why It Works:Overcoming the language/cultural barrier will allow you to reach out tountapped audiences that can help propel viewership growth.How To Do It:Use online tools to create captions for your videos and create content that cantranscend cultural differences. Time Cost Effect Impact Optimization Type •  Engagement •  Subscribers •  Video Ranking Medium: 1+ Hours •  Views 63  
  • 64. Publishing & OptimizationReaching All AudiencesYouTube is a global platform and your audience can exist anywhere. Be Part of the Global CommunityTaking extra steps to optimize your content for any potential audiencewill help your videos reach as many people as possible. Making your •  Find out what other channels exists around the world that arecontent accessible to foreign language speakers and viewers who are relevant or similar to your content.hard-of-hearing provides you with completely new viewers. •  Consider collaborating or cross-promoting with channels in other regions of the world, if your content will translate.Create Content with Global Appeal •  Invite other language speakers to create new voice-overs or audio for your content.•  Your content may already have global appeal (check analytics), but consider if there is an opportunity to adapt it and appeal to cultures •  Use Analytics to find out what regions your channel might already be around the world. attracting an audience, and focus internationalization efforts in those languages.•  Make use of subjects or themes that have cross-culture and global appeal such as animation, dance, animals, or strong visuals without dialogue.•  Focus videos on trends that are popular in specific regions.•  Tie-in your regular content to big tent-pole events happening in other countries and apply internationalization strategies around these big events.•  If there is a big enough opportunity, consider launching your content on a separate channel targeting new regions or with a new language. 64  
  • 65. Publishing & OptimizationReaching All AudiencesYou can optimize your current content to be able to reach more Metadata for a Global Audienceaudiences. YouTube provides several features to help you caption andsubtitle your videos for multiple languages and you can use metadata to •  Adding captions to your videos will help it show up more places oncapture global searches. the site. If your video is captioned for multiple languages it will be searchable in these languages.Creating Captions •  When uploading content that is intended for multiple languages, provide metadata and annotations for both languages, whereYou can provide your own captions and transcripts, or YouTube has appropriate.several features to help you create and translate transcriptions of theaudio in your content. A transcript is a text version of the audio in your •  Using both English & other language Titles, Tags, Descriptions,video that you can upload to YouTube along with your video. This can descriptions – helps discoverability through different search used to create captions for the current language of the video, orsubtitles in other languages.•  If you have a caption track for your videos already created, upload them to YouTube.•  If you upload a caption track on your video, YouTube can then enable Auto-Translate, allowing it to be automatically translated for users in 58 languages (variable accuracy).•  To easily create captions for a video, write out the text of all the audio and upload it. YouTube will auto-sync the timing to match speech in the video. (English, Japanese, Korean speech only)•  Use 3rd-party caption creation tools or ask fans to help create captions. Download or edit the machine transcription created by YouTube’s auto-caption as a starting point and edit for accuracy. (More info about captioning your videos in YouTube Support.) 65  
  • 66. Publishing & OptimizationReaching All AudiencesExamplesMetadata in Two Languages•  /tartofraises1 •  /megwinCollaboration with Global Channels A Global Audience Shown in Analytics•  /Faireset with /MysteryGuitarMan 66  
  • 67. Publishing & OptimizationReaching All AudiencesHow-To Steps1. Consider all audiences when creating content 3. Add captions to your current videosIdentify opportunities to reach a new audience around the globe with Prioritize languages by looking at your traffic sources from differentyour videos. Adapt your most popular videos to be in more languages. regions in YouTube Analytics.Re-edit your current content that is well-suited for translation to have Create captions in target languages by uploading transcriptions todifferent audio in different languages. YouTube or by asking your fans to help translate.Identify tent-pole events in different countries to videos around or Use YouTube’s CaptionTube to have your fans/subscribers createprioritize your optimization efforts for more languages. captions for your videos.2. Cross-promote and collaborate with global channels 4. Optimize videos with multi-language metadata andCheck YouTube Analytics to determine which similar channels have the annotationsbiggest audiences in different countries. If your video has captions, let the audience know by using annotationsChange the country setting at the bottom of the YouTube homepage to or address it in the video content.explore worldly videos and channels. If creating content intended for multiple languages, write titles and descriptions in both languages. Start with your primary audience’s language. Add and write annotations with both languages represented. Use traffic sources and regional information to track if captioning videos are helping your channel attract more viewers. Monitor comments on your videos to see if more language speakers are engaged with your content. 67  
  • 68. Publishing & OptimizationPublishing & OptimizationChecklistEvery channel’s specific approach and strategy to publishing will vary, but below is a simple and usefulpublishing checklist that covers some of the most important actions required once you upload a video.Making the video is only half the battle, optimizing and engaging with the community after you upload are ofequal importance.Upload Write detailed and comprehensive metadata following keyword strategies and formatting. Create and upload a great, eye-catching thumbnail that is high-resolution. Spot-check the live video and published metadata.Publish Annotate the video with community CTAs, subscribe button, and links to related content. Set the video as featured video on your channel page based on how your organize your channel page’s uploads. Set video as a video response to a popular and relevant video from your channel. Add the video to a relevant playlist on your channel. Add to YouTube Show season list, where applicable. Engage and Outreach (See Section Three) 68  
  • 69. Section ThreeCommunity & Social Media70 Involve Your Audience75 Blog Outreach78 Other Social Media84 Checklist 69  
  • 70. Community & Social MediaInvolve Your AudienceStrategy:Interact with your audience and involve them in your videos or channel.Why It Works:Viewer interaction builds loyalty to your content and increases viewerengagement. The channel’s involvement can guide conversation in commentsand user actions.How To Do It:Create viewer-centric content, and engage with the audience through socialfeatures on the platform. Time Cost Effect Impact Optimization Type •  Engagement •  Subscribers •  Video Ranking Medium: 1 2 3 4 5 1+ Hours 70  
  • 71. Community & Social MediaInvolve Your AudienceOnline Video is a social media and a two-way dialogue. Ask the ViewersPeople are drawn to online video and web series becausethey can interact with the channel in ways that they can’t •  Ask viewers for their opinions, ideas, or feedback on videos. Whenever you try something new, ask for their thoughts.with television. Interaction with the viewers is key to themedium. Speak to your audience, and listen to what comes •  Include specific questions in the videos, or in your messaging toback. viewers. Specific questions will encourage more responses and guide the conversations happening around your videos and channel.Making your audience feel heard and a part of the channel •  Ask fans to actively promote your video through social media and onincreases their loyalty and investment in it. Your fans will YouTube by Liking, commenting and favoriting.become your social army – empower them to grow yourbrand and they will be your best promoters. •  Ask for video responses, remixes, or fan-versions to your video. Feature the Audience •  Feature viewers and their content in your video. Whether its featuring comments or user-submitted content in your videos, make the audience feel like the star and they’ll be a fan for life. •  Consider setting criteria for what gets featured on your channel such as requiring the user to be a subscriber. This can boost subscriptions. •  Devote entire episodes to viewer interaction. Comment Videos (responding to / featuring user comments) and vlogs (speaking directly/conversationally to the audience) are easy ways to create and release extra content and speak to your audience in ways different from regular episodes. 71  
  • 72. Community & Social MediaInvolve Your AudienceYour viewers don’t just want to be an audience, they want to Messaging Fans / Subscribersbe a community. They want to engage with your channeland interact through comments, messages, and more. •  Make announcements through YouTube Bulletins which will appear in your subscriber feeds.Make sure you are a part of that conversation andrepresenting your brand well. If your videos attract a large •  Where appropriate, include Call To Actions in your responses orviewership, a community will emerge with or without you. messages, but keep it casual. E.g. “If you like the video, don’t forget to share it!”Interacting with fans and the Community Reward Your Community and Super-Fans•  Respond to comments. This should always be a key part of your •  Find ways to reward your community (both on and off YouTube) for social strategy. Comments are the best forum to interact with their loyalty and support of the channel. Beyond shout-outs in the viewers about specific episodes and will spur more viewers to videos, think of rewards such as fan merchandise or exclusive include their comment when they notice you actively respond. content shared through ‘Unlisted’ videos.•  Respond to comments in the first few hours after you publish a video. These first viewers are your core audience and building comments early helps increase the video’s ranking in search.•  Your own comments on your uploaded videos get pinned to show up at the top of the comments section, prominently featuring your engagement with the fans.•  Be an active member of the YouTube community and platform. Comment, favorite, and be present on the site.•  Where possible, engage with the commenters on the places outside of YouTube where you’re seeing a lot of new views come from, such as blogs, sites or other online communities. 72  
  • 73. Community & Social MediaInvolve Your AudienceExamplesFeaturing the Audience Featuring Comments / Acknowledging the Viewers•  /schmoyoho •  /iJustineAsking the Audience Uploader Comments Show Up First•  /BarelyPolitical •  /TheIndieMachines 73  
  • 74. Community & Social MediaInvolve Your AudienceHow-To Steps1.  Set your own interaction strategy 4. Dedicate time to interact after each uploadIn whatever way makes sense for you, your content, and your channel, Whenever you upload a new video, dedicate time to interact with youracknowledge the viewers and make them feel important. audience. Message them on social media, and be a part of the early conversation that happens around your videos.2. Create viewer-centric contentDecide whether viewer engagement can be included in your regular 5. Ask your fans for feedback and supportvideos, or if separate videos make more sense for you to interact and/ Encourage and guide the conversations that happen around youror involve the audience. videos by asking specific questions.Consider creating videos or segments to your content that feature the Ask for feedback when you make changes or try something new. Askaudience or are centered around engaging with them. for show ideas or new video concepts. Ask viewers for help achieving benchmarks or with programming3. Utilize the social features of the platform initiatives.Respond to comments, send bulletins, use the moderator tool, andrespond to messages from your audience. Don’t just be active on yourown content, engage with other videos as well. Track changes in Analytics for community actions such as commenting, favoriting, or liking of your videos. The viewers will become more engaged as you interact more with them. Track the performance of viewer-interaction segments by using Audience Retention graphs. 74  
  • 75. Community & Social MediaBlog OutreachStrategy:Share your content with relevant blogs, sites and online communities.Why It Works:Blogs and other sites are always looking for great content to feature to theirown audience. External site traffic can be a significant driver of views for yourchannel.How To Do It:Create a Blog Roll and only share content that is relevant. Target your outreachand build relationships. Time Cost Effect Impact Optimization Type •  External Traffic •  Video Ranking Medium: •  Views 1 2 3 4 5 1+ Hours 75  
  • 76. Community & Social MediaBlog OutreachDon’t limit your purview to just YouTube. A lot of viewers Build Relationshipsfind content on YouTube through other sites on the Internet.There are tons of sites and blogs that are always looking •  Keep track of what blogs and sites are featuring your videos and driving views. Identify the key drivers of views and consider sharingfor great content to write about or feature. Make it easy for content with those places first, letting them know they are getting thethese people to promote your videos by reaching out to inside scoop.them with great content that is relevant to their audience. •  Build a relationship with the editors of blogs by thanking them when they repost, and only sharing videos that you truly feel they would want to share with their audience.Get the Word Out Track Your Brand•  Create a ‘blog roll’ for your channel or shows as a promotional tool. Your blog roll should be a comprehensive list of sites, blogs, online influencers (twitter users), and niche online communities that are •  Know where people are talking about your content, or sharing your content. Set Google Alerts for your channel name, show names, relevant to your content. character names, and any other keywords specific to your channel that will help you identify places where your content is appearing or•  Promote new videos to places from your blog roll that you think being discussed across the web. would be interested in the content. Tent-pole or topical content is typically best suited for targeted outreach to relevant sites.•  If you’ve created full playlists of videos related to key tent-pole events, share these curated video sets with blogs, who may be looking for groups of videos about topics currently trending online. YouTube does not recommend or approve any of the blogs or websites shown. Used as examples. 76  
  • 77. Community & Social MediaBlog OutreachHow-To Steps1. Create a blog-roll 2. Send videos to targeted outletsUse blog directories such as Google Blog Search, Technorati, and Send brief, personalized emails to appropriate contacts and include aAlexa to find blogs and sites that are relevant to the type of content you short description of the content, why it might be good for their audience,produce. and a link to the video with the embed code. Make a note that they can embed/share if they like it.Create a list of general blogs with a broad scope in your category. Also,find niche sites that could be relevant to specific episode you producesuch as tent-pole event episodes. 3. Track the pick-upLocate contact information from the sites and include names of Set Google Alerts for the name of the video or use other ‘onlinerecipients, where possible. conversation tracking’ to help you track where it gets embedded. Check your discovery stats to find sites that are driving traffic. Track changes in viewership coming from external sites. You can also use the Traffic Sources metrics to see what % of views is coming from external sites and blogs. Identify key drivers of views and target your outreach there. Track off-site discussions on your content using Google Alerts. 77  
  • 78. Community & Social MediaOther Social MediaStrategy:Leverage other social media to build viewership on your channel and engagewith your audience in new ways.Why It Works:Social media is a great way to turn your fans into a social army that will helpyou broadcast your content out to their friends.How To Do It:Engage with your audience and promote your YouTube content on social mediaplatforms. Time Cost Effect Impact Optimization Type •  Engagement •  Video Ranking Moderate: •  Views Less Than 1 Hour •  Subscribers 78  
  • 79. Community & Social MediaOther Social MediaGoogle+ Creators should establish a Google+ Page to engage with •  Post behind-the-scenes photos or provide a sneak preview of your fans and other YouTube creators. Google+ allows you to videos. organize people into different ‘circles’ to help you guide your interactions and tailor your engagement to a circle’s specific •  Endorse other creators or videos you like. interests or needs. Not only can you share videos and other media, you can get face-to-face, live engagement with your •  Find ways to repurpose and share videos from your archive in audience in Hangouts. unique ways.Manage Circles •  Post content regularly and be consistent about how you engage on your Page.•  Create and organize different circles to correspond with the various audiences you want to reach. Engage•  Create circles for your collaborators, super-fans, and other YouTube •  Don’t simply push content. Be sure to spend time interacting with creators. Discover people in other creators’ circles, and add them to fans in your posts. your circles. •  Ask specific questions about the content you post and solicit feedback.Post and Share•  Determine your goal for each post. Do you want to spur discussion? •  Keep your posts conversational, informational and casual. Communicate news? Increase your Page’s reach? The way you phrase and format your posts will determine which of these goals •  Comment on your posts, on user threads, and respond to direct+ mentions. you will achieve.•  Post new YouTube uploads to your Google+ Page, and target your •  Encourage followers to +1 and share your post if they like what they see. updates to specific circles.•  Provide updates and announcements. •  Poll your followers, and let them vote on ideas for your next video. 79  
  • 80. Community & Social MediaOther Social MediaGoogle+ (continued)Hangout! Measure•  Host Google+ Hangouts with your fans on a regular basis. •  Find out what people are saying about you and your videos by using Google+ search. It’s a good way to help you spot super-fans and•  Hangouts are a great way to seek input from your fans and reward conversations you can jump into, when it makes sense. your super-fans with personal direct access to you. •  Use vRipples to keep track of how your posts are spreading across•  Be creative with Hangouts. You can watch YouTube videos in G+. You can find out who is sharing and re-sharing your videos, who Hangouts in real-time, which allows you to host regular viewing are your biggest influencers, and how communities are forming parties and focus groups. around your content. •  Stay tuned for Analytics on a Page for more data about your users and how your +Page is performing. Link up your Google+ Page in the description module of your YouTube Channel to drive more followers to your Page. Also, include a link to your YouTube Channel in the ‘About’ tab on your +Page profile. Remember to follow all community guidelines and Terms of Service if uploading the video file of a Google+ Hangout to YouTube. 80  
  • 81. Community & Social MediaOther Social MediaFacebook Creators and Partners should have a Facebook presence for •  Your Facebook strategy should be unique to that platform and part their YouTube channel. It is a great tool to interact with your of the objective should be building audience around your YouTube fans in different ways and build audience. Your activity and the content. Create a unique viewing experience for your Facebook fans activity of your fans on Facebook get multiplied out to their by how you post and how you interact, but center your actions on groups of friends, so it is a great way to rely on your fans to driving views, increasing subscriber and gaining more Facebook help introduce your show to new viewers. fans.Facebook Best Practices •  Turn Facebook fans into viewers and subscribers by consistently directing them to your YouTube content and channel.•  Post new uploads to your Facebook page. Post updates regularly (at least once a day.)•  Find ways to repurpose and share videos from your archive in interesting ways.•  Interact with your fans when you post content to your page.•  Ask specific questions about the content you post. Asking a questions to build comments on the post that will help you reach a new audience. Every action your fans take on your page gets broadcast out to their friends, helping you reach new viewers. Encouraging comments will also help you learn about the interest of your core audience. Your Facebook fans represent some of your most dedicated viewers.•  Vary your updates to be both video-centric and also conversational. Your Facebook fans don’t just want to click links, they want to get something extra, more personal on Facebook. Disclaimer: These strategies are sample strategies, not endorsed by YouTube and in no way connected to or sponsored by Facebook. 81  
  • 82. Community & Social MediaOther Social MediaTwitter Twitter is another great tool to interact with your fans in a conversational way. Twitter is also a great for identifying your peers, adding to the conversations that are relevant to you and your audience’s interest, and spotting what is trending on the Web.Twitter Best Practices•  Twitter updates should be a mix of personal updates as well as promoting your content.•  Share links to your newest videos on twitter. You can use URL shorteners to track Click-Through-Rates (CTRs.)•  @reply power-users on twitter with links to videos they would be interested in and may re-tweet to their followers. Twitter outreach to relevant users should accompany your blog outreach.•  Create unique #hashtags for your channel and always use them in your tweets; encourage your followers to do the same.•  Update your twitter feed 1-3 times day to stay visible in your followers’ feeds. Disclaimer: These strategies are sample strategies, not endorsed by YouTube and in no way connected to or sponsored by Twitter. 82  
  • 83. Community & Social MediaOther Social MediaHow-To Steps1. Create and set-up accounts on social media sites 4. Post / share your videosCreate accounts on sites that are relevant to your content and Make posting your YouTube videos to social media sites part of youraudience. Find niche sites that are specific to your audience. YouTube publishing process. Post new uploads, but also find ways to repurpose or reintroduce videos from your archives to your fans onSet up your pages and accounts to reflect your YouTube content and social media Use similar design or branding to unite the different outlets. Accompany each post with questions or other ways to encourage comments.2. Set a social media strategy for your YouTube contentDecide what content to share on the social media sites and how tointeract with your audience in the right ways on each. 5. Track and assess Track engagements and traffic happening on social media sites and assess how they are translating into views for your content. Experiment3. Ask your fans for input with different strategies to turn your social media followers into viewersAsk your fans for ideas on what sort of content they want to see on and subscribers to your channel.different social sites. Monitor your Traffic Sources to track changes coming from external sites and social media sites. Use third-party analytics tools that are available for tracking your keywords or links across social media sites. Investigate the ‘peaks and valleys’ of engagement on social media platforms in the same way you do for YouTube performance. Disclaimer: These strategies are sample strategies, not endorsed by YouTube and in no way connected to or sponsored by other social media sites. 83  
  • 84. Community & Social MediaCommunity & Social MediaChecklist Set up accounts and set specific strategies for all social media sites that are important to your content or audience. Create and maintain a Blog Roll for your channel. Include niche sites or targeted sites for tent-pole related content. Dedicate time and resources to involve and interact with your audience. Perform outreach to blogs, sites and online communities for relevant videos. Create content or segments specifically for your audience and the purpose of engaging with them. Include viewer interaction in your videos through asking specific questions, featuring fans, or by addressing the audience in the videos. Interact with viewers in the first few hours after your upload new content. Respond to comments and be active on social media sites to build engagement around new uploads. Track engagement on social media sites and assess the incoming traffic from those communities to your YouTube content. 84  
  • 85. Now, Go Create Something. 85  
  • 86. Appendix86  Video Upload Checklist87  Metadata Keyword Resources88 Glossary 86  
  • 87. Video Upload ChecklistEvery channel’s specific approach and strategy to publishing will vary, but below is a simple and usefulpublishing checklist that covers some of the most important actions required once you upload a video.Making the video is only half the battle, optimizing and engaging with the community after you upload are ofequal importance.Upload Publish Engage & Outreach Write detailed and comprehensive Annotate the video with community Update your social media metadata following proper CTAs, subscribe button, and links to channels. formatting and strategies. related content. Create and upload a great, eye- Set the video as featured video on Outreach to relevant blogs, catching thumbnail that is high your channel page based on how sites and online communities. resolution. your organize your channel page’s uploads. Engage with the audience on Set the video as a video response to the comments section in the a popular and relevant video from first few hours of publishing. your channel. ‘Like’ and ‘favorite’ the video on Add the video to a relevant playlist your channel in timely on your channel. Add to YouTube increments (e.g. 24hrs later) to Show season list, where applicable. have the activity appear in your subscribers feeds. 87  
  • 88. Metadata Keyword Resources•  YouTube Insight for Audience Tool. Search for the most searched-for words in your category:•  YouTube Keyword Generator / Video Targeting Tool:•  YouTube Trending Topics: Identify trending topics in your category:•  Other Successful Videos: Keywords other successful, similarly-themed videos utilize.•  YouTube Search Suggestions: Start to type keywords and see what suggested searches come up. 88  
  • 89. Glossary (Annotations - Feed)Annotations Channel or Channel Page Video Annotations are an uploader-controlled dynamic overlay you can A channel is the public page for a useradd to videos that allow you to overlay text on a video and/or make parts account on YouTube containing uploaded videos, playlists, liked videos,of the video ‘clickable.’ You can add, edit and delete annotations to your favorited, videos, channel comments, and general activity. Some creatorsvideos controlling the text, placement, timing, and link URLs. URLs can manage or create content across multiple channels. only be directed to Comment Audience Retention Written comments on videos, channels, playlists, or in response to otherThe Audience retention report (formerly known as Hot Spots in Insight) is comments. Comments may be posted either on the watch page or on aan overall measure of your videos ability to retain its audience. It channel page. represents when viewers leave your video, fast-forward, or rewind at different point in the video. Community Actions Any actions taken by a viewer on or around your channel and content.Avatar Includes likes, favorites, subscribes, comments. The square image on your channel page that represent your channel across the site. End-Card or End-Slate A graphic that creators can make and include at the end of their videos.Blog Outreach End-Cards typically include specific call to actions for the viewer toA strategy of sharing your videos with a targeted list of blogs, sites, and/ subscribe, watch more content, visit a channel page, or contain credits foror online communities or influencers. Sending your video link and/or the video. Generally, End-Cards prominently feature annotations. embed code with information about it in the hopes of getting blog editorsor online users to embed or share the video with their audiences. Engagement Interaction between the creator and the audiences, the viewer and theBlog Roll video, or the creator with the site. Can be measured by the number ofA list of blogs, sites, online communities, and influencers relevant to a interactions (comments, favorites, likes, new subscriptions) per view. particular category or type of content, used for Blog Outreach. Feed Bulletin A stream of activity either for one channel (via the channel page feed) orA message a channel owner can send to their subscribers. Bulletins for multiple channels (the homepage feed). Feed activities includeshow up in subscribers feeds. You can attach videos to a bulletin. uploads, updated playlists, video comments, channel comments, new subscriptions, bulletins, likes, favorites, and sharing. Users control whatCall to Action feed activities they broadcast, and by subscribing to channels, what feedPrompting the viewer to take an action. activities are broadcasted to them in the homepage feed. 89  
  • 90. Glossary (Favorite - Share)Favorite(s) Packaging A user action that adds a video to their channel’s Favorites’ playlist. This Graphics and or content that adds context to a video. Packaging canaction can also be broadcast out to subscribers. build your brand, connect your host with the audience, add relevant context to archived content, or add scripted/annotated calls to action.HookContent that is meant to keep viewers interested in what happens next. Playlist Ideally a video’s hook happens within the first 15 seconds. A playlist is a collection of videos that can be viewed, shared, and embedded like an individual video. You can create playlists using anyHosted Playlist videos on YouTube. Videos can be in multiple playlists. Uploaded videosA collection of videos in a playlist with added video context from the and favorited videos are default playlists on your channel. playlist creator. Context is added with ‘hosted’ videos that can act asintros, outros, and/or interstitials. Hosted videos can contain actual host Pre-Buzz (person) or creative branding that acts as a host. Audience interest in a tent-pole event in the days and weeks leading up to it.Like(s) A user action that shows appreciation for a video. This action can be Programming broadcast out to subscribers in the feed. The practice and strategy of organizing videos, shows or channel content and activity in a daily, weekly, or season-long schedule.Metadata The textual information that describes a video, channel, or playlist. Video Recommendation Activity metadata includes title, tags, and description. Playlist metadata includes A strategy where a channel likes, favorites, or comments on a video totitle and description. Channel metadata includes a description. promote that video to their subscribers through the feed. Optimization Series Playlist An action that increases the potential success of a video, channel, A playlist that locks the videos into one specific playlist. Meant for serialplaylist, or content strategy. or episodic content that follows a narrative story arc, videos included in a series playlist cannot be added to other playlists on the channel. Other Channels Module An optional module that allows the channel owner to feature other Share channels on their channel page. Ability to distribute videos via social media, email, or direct links. This action can be broadcast to subscribers. 90  
  • 91. Glossary (Suggested Videos – YouTube Analytics)Suggested Videos Thumbnails Video thumbnails that appear in the right hand column of watch pages The image selected to represent your video or playlist on the site. and the homepage, or the tiled thumbnails that appear when a video has finished playing. Traffic Source The referral source of a view for a video. The page, module, or place of aSubscriber / Subscription site that drove a viewer to a video.By subscribing to a channel, users will see that channel’s activity in theirhomepage feed. Subscribers can also opt into email communication from Video Response the channels they subscribe to on a per-upload and weekly digest basis. A feature that allows users to upload a video comment to a video. Video Responses show up underneath the video they are responding to onSubscriber Box Watch pages. Settings and preferences for video responses can be setSee Other Channels Module. under the edit video menu. Tags Vlog Words or phrases used to describe the content of your videos. Added to A Video-blog. A casual, conversational video format or genre featuring avideos at time of upload. (See Metadata) person talking directly to camera.Teaser Watch Page A short video that acts as a preview or trailer for longer content. Can be The page where the majority of video viewing happens. URLs with theused to promote larger content initiatives or announcements. format[video ID Here] are watch pages.Templates YouTube Analytics Different pre-set channel designs that can be used to highlight videos, A tool that provides information across various metrics for videos,playlists, and other channels. channels, and audience. Available in your user account.Tent-pole Programming and Publishing Content creation and publishing strategy that is meant to draft off of thepopularity of large cultural events. Programming and Publishing Tent-polecontent is meant to maximize audience. 91