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DEEP DIVE ARTICLE HOW TO MAKE MONEY ONLINE SOCIAL MEDIA TIPS & TRICKS YOUTUBE

Can You Make Money on YouTube if You Are Under 18?

With YouTube becoming more and more of a legitimate career path, and with the barrier to entry being so low that anyone can get started from the comfort of their own home or even bedroom, it makes sense that many young people would be eyeing YouTube success before they have even left school.

At the same time, increasing concern over the safety of children online has led to ever more restrictive guidelines regarding what you can monetise on YouTube, which complicates the matter for children looking to make money on the platform.

The only real restriction on children making content on YouTube is the minimum age of thirteen. You have to be at least that age to have a YouTube channel. There are ways to work around this that we’ll touch on later in the post, but that is the only real hard limit, but it is a limit on creation, not on monetisation.

When it comes to earning money on your channel, the content you produce is more relevant than the person making it. You could be fifty years old, but if your content is designed for children, it will be subject to the additional restrictions that apply there.

Similarly, if you are fifteen years old but making content that is primarily watched by adults, you would not be subject to those restrictions.

This may all sound a bit vague, but don’t worry, all will be explained. So, can you make money on YouTube if you are under 18? Let’s find out.

Can You Make Money on YouTube if You Are Under 18? 1

Videos With Underage Audiences

Thanks to COPPA regulations, there are now considerably stricter limitations on the information that can be collected from underage watchers. While this in and of itself is not an issue regarding monetising your content, it has an indirect effect that is an issue.

The fact that YouTube is not allowed to collect as much data on their underage viewers is a significant deterrent for advertisers since one of the most compelling factors of online advertising is the ability to target your ads at increasingly narrow demographics.

If YouTube isn’t allowed to collect the information that will allow them to identify what kind of demographic is watching, advertisers can’t be sure their ads are being shown to the right kind of viewer.

It is not just videos that are marked as “for children” that fall afoul of monetisation denial, however. YouTube’s can determine if a video is primarily made for children—if for no other reason than the audience will be predominately children.

Even if you do not mark your content as intended for children—even if you do not intend for your videos to be watched by children—YouTube will mark it as such if the audience turns out to be mostly youngsters.

Making Videos As An Underaged YouTuber

There are two ways to consider the term “underage” when talking about YouTube. The first is in the legal sense of you not being able to make certain decisions for yourself due to your age. Some kinds of decisions have different age limits (drinking alcohol vs living on your own, for example) and all of them differ from region to region.

The good news is YouTube does not make much distinction here. If you are over the age of the thirteen, you are free to make content and earn money on the platform.

If you are under thirteen, however, you are not allowed to have a YouTube channel under YouTube’s terms of service. That is not necessarily the end of the road as far as your YouTube dreams go, and we’re not just talking about waiting until you are old enough. You’re just going to need a little help.

Officially speaking, your channel won’t be your own, but you can enlist the help of an adult (typically a parent) who will be in charge of the channel, while you make the content. This is perfectly allowed under the terms of service, and many very successful channels have risen to prominence in this manner, both before and after YouTube clamped down on videos by and for underage people.

Being Responsible

Now, it is important to note that we are not trying to give you advice on how to circumvent YouTube’s terms of service here. There can be debate over whether YouTube’s approach is the best way, but few people would disagree with the intent behind it. The Internet can be a dangerous place for children, in both an emotional and physical wellbeing sense.

We are not advocating you get your parents to sign up for a YouTube account and just hand you the login details and leave you to it. And if you’re a parent, we strongly advise against doing this. The adult who officially runs the account should be overseeing the content that goes on it, even if it is just to cast a watchful eye over the final edit before it goes live. They should be moderating any contact the child has with people online, and they should be ensuring the child does not get taken advantage of.

There are always exceptions to the rule, but, for the most part, children need protection, so while we are giving you advice on how to make money on YouTube if you are under 18, it shouldn’t be taken as an encouragement to break YouTube terms of service.

Can You Make Money on YouTube if You Are Under 18? 2

How to Earn Money With an Underage Audience

As we mentioned above, there are restrictions on videos with underage audiences that all but rule out the conventional route of monetising your YouTube content through the YouTube Partner Programme, but that does not mean that you cannot monetise your videos at all.

Here are some ways you can make money with your videos even when your audience puts your channel below YouTube’s threshold for an underage audience.

Patreon

Patreon (and similar platforms) may be something a long shot if your audience is primarily underage since underage viewers are less likely to have money of their own to give. But, sites like Patreon have their own restrictions for who can use it. Patreon, for instance, has a minimum age restriction of thirteen years old to sign up, and eighteen years old before you can sign up as a creator or support another creator. They also allow under eighteens to be a creator or support one with written permission from a parent or guardian.

This means that if you have an audience that is prepared to support you through Patreon, you don’t need to worry about their age because Patreon’s terms of service will have ensured they are old enough or have permissions to do so. And, if you are too young to become a creator on Patreon, assuming you are over thirteen, you can get written consent from a parent or guardian and get started!

Promote Other Ventures

YouTubers with a young audience often build their content on top of something that appeals to that audience, such as video games. If you are able to, there may be a way to translate that appeal into a monetisable thing.

To take one popular example, Roblox—a video game where anyone can create their own mini-games for others to play—is especially popular among young gamers. It also provides the ability for people who create content for it to earn money through in-game transactions. If you have built an audience around such a thing, you could promote the games you create and potentially earn money that way. Another example would be an arts and crafts channel which also promotes an Etsy store where your own arts and crafts can be purchased.

If you go down this route, it is important to remember that the thing you are promoting needs to be relevant to your audience. There is no sense in building a channel around Marvel comic book-related content and then trying to promote a SquareSpace affiliate code. Of course, this is true of any age of audience, but it is especially true of younger audiences.

Can You Make Money on YouTube if You Are Under 18? 3

Target Older Viewers

Not everyone can shift their content in such a way that it changes the average ages of their audience—at least, not without drastic changes to the channel—but for some, it is definitely possible, and it may be the answer to your monetisation problems.

By shifting your content in a more mature direction and ensuring that your videos are not marked as made for children, you should be able to qualify for the YouTube Partner Programme—assuming you have met all the other criteria.

Of course, if you are making content aimed at very young children—seven to ten-year-olds, for example—this kind of shift will not be a practical solution. But, if your audience is a little older—fourteen to seventeen, for example—it may be worth looking into.

Tips for Being an Under-18 YouTuber

Firstly, if you are a parent or guardian reading this, we would recommend familiarising yourself with YouTube’s child safety page as a bare minimum. If you are the child YouTuber, it won’t hurt to read through that page either.

For the success part of YouTubing as a minor, we have some tips.

Don’t Take Things to Heart

There are mean people on the Internet, and they often don’t have much to say in the way of being constructive. YouTube disables comments on videos that are intended for a young audience for this very reason, but if you find yourself in the comments of yours or another YouTuber’s video and people are being mean to you, do not let it affect you.

There is a way of delivering constructive criticism that you may take some time to learn recognise. As a rough example, someone telling you that your videos are too quiet is useful feedback that you should take on board. On the other hand, someone telling you that you are ugly is not useful, since being ugly is a subjective comment and even if it were true, you can’t change how you look.

Learning to separate the useful criticism from the just plain insulting is a skill that will take a lot of practice, but in the meantime, do not let any mean comments you might encounter ruin your day.

Hone Your Craft

If you have dreams of becoming a professional YouTuber, take this opportunity to get as good as you can at making content. There are two important factors for young people here;

  • Their developing brains learn things more readily than when they are older
  • You will likely not have as much free time later in life as you do as a child.

You may be currently trying to balance homework, a social life, and any extracurricular activities you have with YouTube and wondering how that second point could be true. But trust us, while there are always exceptions, most people will have far less free time when they get older, start working full time, have a family, etc. Take advantage of all the spare time you have now to improve your video-making abilities.

If In Doubt, Don’t!

If you are in any doubt that something you are planning might be a bad idea, don’t do it. Or at least get a more experienced opinion before deciding. This can include things sharing personal stories online, expressing controversial viewpoints, and more.

Many people who did not grow up with the Internet (and some who did) have said and done things online that have had a significant and negative impact on their lives. Don’t risk saying something you might regret for the rest of your life this early on.

Can You Make Money on YouTube if You Are Under 18? 4

Privacy Privacy Privacy

We can’t stress this enough, but privacy is crucial, especially for under-18 YouTubers. If for no other reason than the YouTuber will almost certainly be living with their parents or guardians at that age and any privacy violations will affect the people you live with as well.

Don’t share personal information in your videos, and make sure there is nothing in the video that someone might be able to use to work out your home address or phone number, or anything of that nature.

Final Thoughts

YouTubing when you are under-18 is something that can be a fun hobby or a solid foundation for a future career, but you have to be careful. And, if you are a parent, remember that there is a reason you are responsible for your children.

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DEEP DIVE ARTICLE HOW TO MAKE MONEY ONLINE TIPS & TRICKS YOUTUBE

How Do YouTubers Receive Their Money?

In a little over a decade, YouTube has gone from an interesting online video platform that is fun but ultimately frivolous, to a legitimate career path that surprisingly attainable for almost everyone.

This may feel a bit “icky” to some—YouTube was originally this fun young thing that some people were lucky enough to succeed financially at, but now it’s a mature, grown-up platform with people of all ages eeking out a living, often making content that is far from exciting or creative.

That, unfortunately, is the reality of any career. And, with any career choice, there are a lot of mundane questions to answer. Things like “what is your earning potential”, “how reliable is this career”, and, as the title of this post asks, “how do YouTubers receive their money?”

The how of getting paid on YouTube is one of those small questions that may seem insignificant at first but can be quite important for reasons we’ll get into shortly. The quick and straightforward answer to “how do YouTubers receive their money” is through Google Adsense, who pay either directly into your bank by deposit or via a cheque in the mail.

However, as with most simplified answers, this doesn’t paint the full picture. For example, there are multiple common ways for YouTubers to get paid besides AdSense and a variety of different ways to get paid by those other methods.

Don’t worry; we’re going to go over the most common ways that YouTuber’s get paid for their content; all you need to do is keep reading!

Do YouTubers Pay Tax? 3

How Do YouTubers Make Their Money?

Before you can understand how the money is received, it is important to understand where the money is coming from.

On the Internet in this day and age, there is a seemingly limitless selection of ways to leverage an audience into financial gain, both directly and indirectly.

That being said, the many years of YouTube success across thousands and thousands of YouTubers have allowed a few different methods to rise to the top of the pile in terms of convenience, effectiveness, and popularity.

YouTube Partner Programme/Google AdSense

Let’s start with the obvious. When we gave our simplified answer to the question of “how do YouTubers receiver their money” above, this was the method we were talking about. This is the built-in monetisation option that you can choose to enable when your channel has met the necessary criteria. That criteria include;

  • Have at least 1,000 subscribers
  • Have at least 4,000 hours of watch time over the last twelve months
  • Meet YouTube’s various policies for spam and community guidelines
  • Have an AdSense account

When you are part of the YouTube Partner Programme—and on eligible videos—YouTube will show advertisements that can earn you money. The exact amount earned per video depends on how many ads are served and what your viewer’s behaviour is in relation to those ads. For example, do they watch the whole ad, or do they skip it as soon as they get a chance?

These ads are actually served by Google’s AdSense platform, and any payments are handled through there. That is why you need to have a Google AdSense account before you can join the YouTube Partner Programme. Adsense supports a few different payment methods including;

  • Cheques
  • Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT)
  • Rapida
  • Bank Transfer

You might have noticed the conspicuous absence of PayPal in that list. PayPal may be the largest and most popular online payment processor, but it is not an option for Google’s AdSense.

How Do YouTubers Receive Their Money?

Membership Platforms

Membership platforms allow your subscribers to commit to a small monthly sum to support your content. The incentive usually being that having a more reliable source of revenue compared to YouTube’s standard monetisation system will allow you to put more time into your channel, and thus create better or more content. Of course, there doesn’t always have to be an incentive—sometimes people just want to support their favourite creators.

YouTube offer their own membership option for channels with 30,000 subscribers or more, but the payment is handled the same way as their ad-based revenue. However, another option is to look outside of YouTube for a third party membership platform.

The most popular example of this is Patreon, a platform that allows you to set different tiers of supporters and offer unique perks to each of those tiers. Unlike AdSense, who do not support PayPal as a payment method, Patreon allows PayPal as well as fellow online payment processors, Payoneer and Stripe. Another example of this kind of service is Ko-Fi, which allows you to get paid through either PayPal or Stripe.

Merchandise

Another way to get paid from your YouTube channel is through the sale of merchandise. There are a plethora of services around that can facilitate this, including YouTube’s own inhouse solution for channels with 10,000 subscribers or more. There are dozens, perhaps hundreds of alternatives, however. As a general rule, you can expect to find PayPal and cheque payments as an option for getting your money.

Direct Donations

It is also possible to receive direct donations from your viewers. How you receive this will depend entirely on your own preferences regarding the services you use. For example, PayPal allows you to set up a donation page for this very reason. Ko-Fi is essentially designed for small, one-off payments (the platform is built around the idea of your audience buying you a cup of coffee).

We strongly advise against just giving your bank details out, of course.

Brand Deals and Promoted Content

This monetisation option involves directly dealing with an advertiser. In this case, we can’t offer much insight into what would be involved since every deal will be different. Indeed, you could even request a particular method of payment as part of your deal.

Why is the Way YouTubers Receive Their Money Important?

If you are just YouTubing for fun and you are not concerned with earning money from it, it doesn’t really matter how YouTubers get paid. But for people who are interested in the earnings they could be receiving, and certainly for YouTubers who are looking to make their YouTube journey a career move, it is essential information.

For one thing, the part of the world you are in could determine whether or not you can earn money from YouTube directly. At the time of writing, AdSense is not available to people in the following countries;

  • Crimea
  • Cuba
  • Iran
  • North Korea
  • Sudan
  • Syria

It is also not available to individuals or businesses that are restricted by trade sanctions or export compliance laws. Granted, there probably aren’t a huge number of people who meet any of the above criteria that are looking to start a YouTube career, but it pays to know these things. The regions that AdSense is not available in are not set in stone, for example. Shifting political situations could see countries being removed from that list, or added to it.

The same reasoning applies to payment processors. For example, if you were unable or unwilling to use PayPal or Stripe, you would not be able to get your money out of Ko-Fi.

These are all things to factor in if you intend to make YouTube into a career move, but not necessarily something you should be concerned about when you are first starting out. After all, if you make it big on YouTube, but circumstances conspire to keep you from getting paid, you could always migrate to another platform. It wouldn’t be easy, but it would be doable. And there are always other ways to monetise your channel.

Monetising Your Channel: Diversity is Key

YouTube goes to great lengths to make their platform financially viable. And, even though it doesn’t always feel like it, part of that viability is making YouTubers money, since YouTubers who are earning a decent amount of money for their efforts are more likely to continue putting that effort into the platform. Even when YouTube makes significant changes that seem to harm YouTuber earning potential, it is because they are trying to make the platform as appealing as possible advertisers.

Whether the changes they make are always effective or worth the grievances they cause is a different issue, but the motive behind them is clear enough.

Unfortunately, the ever-changing landscape of YouTube monetisation, combined with the whims of advertisers and shifting trends, makes the YouTube Partner Programme a somewhat unreliable source of income. In fact, not only is it unreliable, it is typically not a great earner for many types of video. YouTube revenue is mostly measured in CPM, which is essentially an amount you earn per thousand views you get. The actual figure is all over the place due to how large a factor viewer engagement plays—a video with a lot of views but where most viewers skipped their ads might earn less than a channel with a fraction of the views, but most viewers watched the ads—but as a rough average, you can expect around $1.50 to $2 per one thousand views.

Assuming you are making $2 for every thousand views you get, you would have to be getting an average of over seventeen thousand views a day to earn enough money to be considered above the poverty line in the United States. That’s a lot of views. It’s not an unachievable goal, of course, but it’s no small feat to reach an average number of views a day that is measured in tens of thousands. It’s also worth mentioning that most people don’t strive to be just above the poverty line. To bring your YouTube revenue up to something more in line with the average income in the United States, you would be looking at around forty thousand views a day.

How Do YouTubers Receive Their Money? 2

Other Options

If you can build up a dedicated enough audience, direct contributions such as PayPal donations, or memberships such as through Patreon or YouTube’s own membership option are a great way to build a solid, reliable revenue stream from your YouTube channel.

Merchandise is also an option but should be considered a secondary option rather than your primary source of revenue. While you can realistically build a large base of people willing to contribute a few dollars here and there to support you, it is far less likely that you will be able to sell T-shirts or mugs with the same consistency, and in large enough numbers. Unless you are a fashion company, merchandise should be considered a side gig.

Brand deals are a little trickier as they typically require a brand to come to you. Pitching ideas to companies is not unheard of, but it is far more common for the company to go to the YouTuber. Sponsored videos and brand deals are by far the most lucrative of the many ways to get paid for your YouTube channel, though the exact amount you can earn will depend on your channel’s content and following.

Final Thought: Tax

There is a multitude of ways to earn money from your YouTube channel, but not quite as many ways to receive that money. The one absolute factor is that you will need a bank account. Whether you receive your money directly from Google AdSense, via a payment processor, or even via a physical cheque mailed to your home, you will need a bank account for the money to go into. The upshot of this fact is that your earnings will always be traceable, and as such, entirely discoverable by any governmental agency that might want to look into your finances.

Neither YouTube, Google, nor any of the payment processors mentioned handle taxes; that is all on you. Of course, tax law is different from region to region, and country to country. If you are not familiar with the law on taxes where you are, you should do some research to avoid getting a nasty surprise when tax collectors start knocking on your door.

In truth, the amount of money received by most YouTuber’s will not be enough to even register on a government’s tax-collecting radar, but that is not a risk we recommend taking. If you should be paying tax on your YouTube earnings, it’s better just to pay them and stay out of trouble!

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DEEP DIVE ARTICLE TIPS & TRICKS YOUTUBE

What is the Best Bitrate for YouTube?

Providing the best experience for your viewers is a worthy goal that all YouTubers should strive for, and one that can take many different forms.

There are times when it is blindingly obvious what steps you should take. For example, if you are recording your audio using a built-in laptop microphone and the results are fuzzy, tinny, and a whole host of other adjectives you don’t necessarily want to associate with your audio, a decent microphone is a clear step in the right direction.

There are more subtle steps you can take, however, and one of those is the bitrate you upload your video at. Finding the right bitrate is a balancing act between quality and viewing experience. Fortunately, YouTube makes things easier by processing your video to ensure that the content being delivered to your viewers is up to scratch. That being said, as a general rule, the less work you leave YouTube to do, the better. Any time YouTube has to make changes, be it to the volume levels, the bitrate, the resolution, or any aspect of your video, there is a chance the results will not be to your liking.

So, what is a bitrate? And, more importantly, what is the best bitrate for YouTube? We’ll get to what it is below, but as for the best bitrate for YouTube (Source)

Type Bitrate (Standard Framerate) Bitrate (High Framerate)
2160p (4k) 35-45 Mbps 53-68 Mbps
1440p (2K) 16 Mbps 24 Mbps
1080p 8 Mbps 12 Mbps
720p 5 Mbps 7.5 Mbps
480p 2.5 Mbps 4 Mbps
360p 1 Mbps 1.5 Mbps

Please note that the above values are applicable to SDR video only. If you want the numbers for HDR, check that link above the table.

Uploading videos at these bitrates will ensure you are giving your viewers the highest quality you can while not hitting YouTube’s bitrate cap, which will cause them to lower the bitrate in processing. If you’d like to know more on this topic, however, keep reading.

What is a Bitrate?

Bitrate is the name given to the measurement of data encoded in a unit of time which, for video, is typically Mbps, or megabits per second.

As you might expect, the higher the bitrate, the better the quality of the video.

However, that higher bitrate comes with additional bandwidth requirements, which can mean a lousy viewing experience for people whose Internet connection (or computer hardware, for that matter) isn’t up to the task. They will be getting choppy, stuttering playback which is not fun for anyone.

A variety of factors affect how much bandwidth is necessary. For example, a video running at sixty frames per second will need twice as much bandwidth as a video running at thirty frames per second that is otherwise identical. Another significant factor is the codec used since that will alter the amount of data an individual frame requires.

And if this sounds like a foreign language, don’t worry, we’ll go over codecs in a little more detail shortly.

What Happens if I use a Bitrate that is too Low?

Using a low bitrate will result in a lower quality stream for your viewer. Now, whether or not this is a bad thing is subjective; if you are happy with the quality of the video at a particular bitrate, it doesn’t matter if it is low by any other standard.

In fact, the lower you can get your bitrate without bringing the quality down too far, the better since it means a smoother experience for your viewers.

Even if a viewer has the connection for a high-bitrate video, it doesn’t hurt them to view it at a lower bitrate if the quality is good enough.

What Happens if I use a Bitrate that is too High?

Higher bitrates will result in more bandwidth requirements for your user, which, may be necessary for certain video qualities. For example, streaming 4K at 60fps in anything approaching a decent quality is going to result in a lot of bandwidth; there’s no getting around that fact.

In cases where the bandwidth requirements are higher than your viewer’s connection can handle, they will get choppy, stuttering, buffering playback.

Unlike having your bitrate too low, we do have an objective consequence for having it too high. As you increase the bitrate of a video, you will reach a point of diminishing returns where the bump in bitrate results in a barely noticeable—or completely indistinguishable—improvement in quality.

In this case, the increase in demand on your viewer’s Internet connection is not worth it for the minimal improvement it grants them.

Match YouTube

As we mentioned above, anytime you force YouTube to make changes to your video, you run the risk of them doing so in a way that you are not happy with.

It is better to aim for YouTube’s preferred properties wherever possible, which in the case of bitrate, can be found in the table above.

That being said, YouTube put a lot of effort into making their platform work as smoothly as possible. The fact that the processing stage could alter your video in a way you are not happy with doesn’t mean it will. It is also worth noting that YouTube will be making more significant changes to your video at other resolutions, so this is something you will have to make peace with one way or another.

For example, you could upload a 4K video with the encoding settings so perfectly aligned with YouTube that it needs no processing whatsoever… to display in 4K. YouTube is still going to have to process a 1080p version, and that will be the version that most YouTube viewers see—though 4K is gaining traction.

In truth, the benefits of making your video match YouTube’s desired encoding settings apply more to other aspects, such as audio levels. But that doesn’t mean there are no benefits to making sure your bitrate lines up with what YouTube wants.

How to Make Money Online as a Singer or Musician 3

Audio Bitrates

Bitrates don’t just apply to video, of course; there are audio bitrates to consider as well. In terms of what these are and how they behave, for simplicities sake, just think of them as exactly the same as video bitrates but applied to audio.

The primary difference here is the amounts we are dealing with. Audio is considerably smaller than video, so the bitrates are also smaller. For video, we typically measure bitrates in megabits. For audio, it is kilobits. If you are not familiar with the naming system of “kilo” and “mega”, a kilobit is a thousand bits, and a megabit is a million bits. That makes a megabit a thousand times more bits than a kilobit.

Using the same link that we supplied above regarding YouTube’s preferred video bitrates, we can tell you that their preferred audio bitrates are as follows;

Type Audio Bitrate
Mono 128 kbps
Stereo 384 kbps
5.1 512 kbps

Codecs, Wrappers, and More

There are a number of other terms to deal with when talking about encoding a video, some which we have mentioned already in this article. We could probably fill an entire post on each one, but it’s worth touching on them here since they are important terms to get familiar with when dealing with video encoding.

Container or Wrapper

The container of your video is a type of file that allows multiple streams of data to be stored in a single file. Typically, a container will include metadata that can tell a player information about the file, such as the title. There are many examples of container files outside of the world of video and audio, but the important information that is contained in a video wrapper is the video and audio data. Different combinations of audio and video codecs can be embedded within the wrapper file.

YouTube’s preferred container is MP4, though the codecs you use will play a more significant role in how well YouTube processes your video.

How to Make Money on YouTube Using Other People's Videos 2

Codecs (Audio and Video)

Codecs are the method by which a piece of video or audio is compressed. This is necessary to reduce the size of the data so that it can be more feasibly streamed across the Internet.

I have a full deep dive in the best codecs for YouTube and the surprising differences in my blog.

Compression—and, as a result, codecs—work by reducing the data in a video or audio stream as much as possible. As an example, a stretch of video that is just blank screen and silence, if left uncompressed, will take up the same amount of space as a stretch of video of the same length that has plenty of action going on onscreen. With compression, that stretch of blank, silent screen can be significantly reduced in size since there is no need to store hundreds of frames of identical data.

Different codecs handle this compression in different ways. For example, some focus on preserving as much detail as possible, which gives the best results visually, but doesn’t necessarily achieve a great reduction in data size. Other codecs might focus on getting the size down but, in the process, lose a noticeable amount of fine detail.

As with many things in life, choosing the right code is about finding a good balance between those two aspects. That being said, YouTube’s preferred audio codec is AAC-LC, and their preferred video codec is H.264.

Framerate

The framerate is the number of frames of video that are shown per second. A single frame is essentially a still image at the resolution that the video is processed in. So, for a 1080p video that is running at thirty frames per second, you are looking at a slideshow of thirty 1920 x 1080 images every second. No wonder video takes up so much data!

The more frames your video has, the smoother a viewing experience it will be. That being said, it is not always a case of more is better. There are certain stylistic elements to consider. For example, twenty-four frames per second are the standard in cinema, and so video in this framerate tends to have a more cinematic look. If the video is footage of a video game, on the other hand, you would probably want sixty frames per second where possible.

The most common frame rates are 24, 25, 30, 48, 50, and 60, though YouTube does not limit you to one of these options.

Resolution and Aspect Ratio

The aspect ratio and resolution of your video are not quite the same things. The resolution is fairly straight forward, and even those with little knowledge in this area are usually familiar with the concept. The resolution of a video is the number of pixels being shown on screen, displayed as width and height. For example, 1080p video is 1920 x 1080, or 1,920 pixels across and 1,080 pixels down.

Aspect ratio, on the other hand, is the ratio of width to height, which describes the shape of the video screen. For example, the above mentioned 1920 x 1080 is a 16:9 screen ratio, which is the most common aspect ratio used on YouTube, but any resolution where the ratio of horizontal pixels to vertical pixels is the same is classed as 16:9. For example, 4K, which is 3840 x 2160, and 240p, which is 426 x 240, are both 16:9.

For comparison, a square video, where the width and height of the resolution are the same, would have an aspect ratio of 1:1.

Final Thoughts

Bitrates are one of those things that can be a significant problem, but probably shouldn’t be. By keeping your bitrates around the numbers suggested by YouTube, you shouldn’t have any issues with the quality of your video.

Granted, there will always be some special situations where YouTube’s recommended defaults just don’t work for you, but if you are encountering that kind of situation, you are probably knowledgable enough to figure out the best course of action. For the rest of us mere mortals, the best bitrate for YouTube will often be the one that they suggest.

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MARKETING SOCIAL MEDIA TIPS & TRICKS YOUTUBE

YouTube Channel Art Size

Presentation is everything, and your channel art can play a huge role in how potential new viewers perceive your channel.

If you are running a channel aimed at businesses, having unprofessional-looking channel art could put your target audience off. Similarly, if you are running a comedy channel, your channel shouldn’t look too formal.

On a more fundamental level, having your art be too small will affect the quality it displays at, making it blurry and generally giving the impression that you perhaps don’t care about your channel. There are other factors to consider, such as the placement of your art within the overall image, and how it will display on various different platforms. Remember, YouTube can be watched on a plethora of devices these days, from desktop computers to television sets to mobile phones.

YouTube Channel Art Size

So what should your YouTube channel art size be? Well, there are a few figures to take into account here;

  • 2560 x 1440 is the recommended dimensions of your YouTube channel art. Remember; YouTube makes these recommendations for a reason, and you really should treat this as an ideal size.
  • 2048 x 1152 is the minimum resolution you should make your channel art image. Below this size and YouTube will not allow you to upload it. The aspect ratio must be 16:9.
  • 1546 x 423 is the safe zone for any critical parts of your channel art if you are using the recommended YouTube channel art size. If you are using the minimum size, the safe zone would be 1235 x 338. What this means is that anything you want viewers to be able to see, you should keep within an imaginary rectangle of this size that is centered within the overall channel art image. Anything outside of this safe zone may get cut off or hidden on various devices. That is not to say you shouldn’t put any effort into the rest of the channel art, but don’t put anything outside of that area if it is vital that it be seen, such as social media info, or schedules.
  • 6MB is the maximum file size your channel art can be. Anything larger and YouTube won’t accept it. You can, however, upload smaller channel art images.

If you need some examples of what a YouTube channel banner can look like I have pulled together a list of some of the best, worst and weirdest youtube channel banners in my blog.

The part that can be tricky to wrap your mind around is the different platforms, and how the sizes apply to each. So let’s take a look at that.

How Channel Art Displays on Different Devices

For the rest of the article, we’re going to assume we are working with the recommended YouTube channel art size. If your channel art is a different size, you will have to scale the dimensions we discuss to suit.

The first device we are going to talk about is TV. Televisions—or, more accurately, devices that use the YouTube app designed for televisions—are the only ones where the full 2560×1440 will show. Televisions tend to have a lower pixel density due to being much larger screens, which may explain why YouTube treats it more as a background than a header on this platform.

For every other device, there is one crucial number to remember; 423. This is the height of the displayed area of your channel art regardless of the platform it is being shown on. The width, on the other hand, depends on the device. The maximum width that will be displayed on desktops is the full 2560, whereas the maximum on a tablet, like an iPad, is 1855. For mobile phones, it is 1546. It is also worth noting that the desktop size is scalable, and can be anywhere between the maximum 2560 and the minimum 1546.

And this is the reason there is a safe zone of 1546 x 423, because that area of the channel art will be shown regardless of the device, so it is the only part of the channel art you can guarantee will be seen no matter what platform the channel is being viewed on. You can, of course, put whatever you want outside of that safe zone, but be aware that some people may not see it. And, given that mobile phones are among the most popular devices to view YouTube on, there is a very good chance anyone looking at your channel will only be seeing that minimum safe zone.

YouTube Channel Art Size 1

What Should I Put in my Channel Art’s Safe Zone?

Now you know which part of your channel art can be relied on to always show, what should you put in there? The answer to that is one that deserves a post of its own, as there are many ways to play the channel art game. You could have a humorous slogan, a matter of fact statement about what the channel does, an upload schedule, or really anything.

One solid piece of advice for what you should be showing in the safe zone of your channel art is information that accurately conveys what your channel is about. At the top of the post, we mentioned a formal, business-orientated channel having unprofessional channel art not being a great idea, and that about sums up this advice. Try to accurately represent your channel at every level, not just in any words that are said in the channel art, but in the tone of the image.

It’s not uncommon to see social media information in YouTube channel art, but don’t assume it’s right for your channel art automatically. Remember, there are no links in your channel art. If you are going to include your Twitter or Instagram, you will have to write out username on that platform in the channel art. If it is a long and complicated handle, it may not be the best fit. You can always link to them in the header links that YouTube lets you place on your channel page.

How to Set YouTube Channel Art?

Setting the art for your channel is extremely easy. Firstly, make sure you are logged in to YouTube and head over to your channel. You should see a “customize channel” button in the top right-hand side, just under the channel art. If you are on a phone or tablet, you are looking for a little cogwheel icon instead, but the location should be roughly the same.

Once you have clicked that you should be presented with a screen that looks like your channel with the exception that hovering over different elements of your channel page reveals a little pencil edit icon. Clicking on one of those icons will allow you to edit the element in question, so head on up to the channel art and click on the edit icon in the top right-hand corner of it.

From here, you can choose to upload a new image, select one your previous headers in “Your photos”, or choose something from the gallery that YouTube offers. Once you’ve chosen an image—assuming it is not too small in dimensions or too large in file size—you can then crop it to suit, click done, and that’s all there is to it.

How do I Change my Channel’s Icon?

Since your channel is tied to a Google account, you have to go there to change your channel icon. It can help to understand why this process is the way it is if you think of the channel icon as more like a user profile picture.

Fortunately, getting to the right place to change this icon is not that difficult. If you are logged in, you should be able to go to your channel hover over the channel icon, which will reveal a little camera icon. Clicking that will take you where you need to go, allowing you to upload a new image. If it doesn’t show up straight away, don’t worry. Sometimes it can take a little time to update on other services, and YouTube technically counts as a different service to Google.

Branding

It can be easy to overlook branding on YouTube, particularly if you are not the kind of YouTuber that thinks in terms of marketing.

It is worth wrapping your mind around the concept of branding; however, as it can make a significant impact on your channel.

If possible, try to incorporate a consistent theme to your online presence. It may be a logo or icon, but a colour scheme works surprisingly well, too.

The goal is to have viewers associate your branding with good content so that, when they see it in other places, they recognise it almost immediately as something they will like. It is much easier to pick up on a particular combination of colours that you are familiar with than it is to remember the name or recognise the face of someone you are not familiar with.

Once your branding is established in the mind of a viewer, it will draw their attention in thumbnails, and any other places your branding appears. And, as many of you will know, getting a viewers attention is a significant part of the battle. Once you have them looking at your thumbnail and title, you are well on your way to getting a view.

And, of course, your channel art is one of the primary places to show that branding. It doesn’t necessarily have to be the centrepiece of your channel art—though it certainly can be if you prefer—but it should be incorporated. From there, you can go on to include it in other places, but the main area you should try and tie in is your thumbnail because that is the spot where your branding will be recognised the most, and where you will be able to attract the attention of those who are familiar with you.

It’s worth noting that branding sentiment can work against you if your content is good. Viewers will associate your branding with the experience they had watching your content. And, if the experience was bad, that is the emotion that your branding will conjure up. As always, good content is fundamental to success on YouTube.

Other Uses for Channel Art

Your YouTube channel art doesn’t have to be a one-trick pony. In fact, as mentioned in the branding talk above, it would actually be better if it wasn’t just used on your channel page. Using your channel art in other places helps with that branding, but it also allows you to focus extra time or money on making one good piece of channel art without worrying about having to do the same for other places.

Some of those other places include the header image on social media sites, artwork for things like stickers, and even overlays for streams. Of course, a purpose-made YouTube channel art image won’t necessarily drop into all of these roles without any effort. In the case of social media headers, you should be able to get away with just cropping the image to suit, but there may be a bit more work involved with something like a stream overlay.

Conclusions

The ideal YouTube channel art size can be seen as something of a misnomer, given that YouTube has a minimum size and will not allow you to upload channel art that is smaller than that. Still, the difference between the minimum size and the recommended size is enough that you could see significant degradation of your channel art if it is stretched to fit wider screens. For that reason, we would always recommend uploading your channel art at the recommended 2560×1440 resolution.

You can, of course, create a larger channel art image; however, the cropping process that your image goes through after upload will produce an image of the size YouTube wants regardless of what size it was going in, so you none of that extra resolution will make it to your channel page. That being said, it can’t hurt to have a higher resolution version of your channel art available. It could come in handy for things like printing on merchandise. And, of course, with screen resolutions continually increasing, the day will come when YouTube decide to increase their recommended channel art sizes.

Now, if you’re ready to get making your channel art, there are plenty of tools to help you make excellent channel art, not to mention services to make your life easier, and resources to help you learn.

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YouTube Shorts Explained [What, Where, How, When & Why?]

YouTube shorts is the first new and large feature to be added to the YouTube app and platform for years.

This could be the start of a land grab for attention that we all need to pay attention to as Youtube positions itself to take on the vertical video format platforms like TikTok, SnapChat and Instagram Reels.

Quickly, what are YouTube Shorts? – YouTube Shorts are vertical format videos like TikTok. 0-60 seconds in length, uploaded using the YouTube Shorts App or uploaded as a normal video and tagged with #shorts in the title or description. These can be displayed on the stories shelf under suggested videos on mobile devices.

This could be the next big land grab in the YouTube platforms history so in this article I am going to step you through all I know about the new feature

What Are YouTube Shorts?

TikTok has rocked the digital world by grabbing the attention of the younger generation who want to share their videos and express themselves – and where the youth goes, so does the potential future of digital media.

We have seen this play out time and time again when a platform ages up too much that something new and “cool” comes along for the younger generation to play with.

MySpace was killed by the new Facebook.

Facebook got too widely used with even your grandma having a profile so people started to take selfies on Instagram and Snapchat.

Instagram got swamped with professionals and people worried that it was “too late to start a  YouTube Channel?” and so TikTok was the new home of the younger up coming demographic of content creators.

YouTube saw this trend and understood that if they want to stay on top of the video creation wave, they will need to win over the next generation of video makers back from TikTok – enter YouTube Shorts!

How To Make YouTube Shorts

Initially the YouTube Shorts tool is a closed beta in India to capitalize on India’s ban on TikTok leaving a very large gap in the market for YouTube to convert into new users.

How do I make a YouTube short? – You can make a YouTube short in the YouTube Mobile App by clicking the + icon at the bottom of the screen and choosing “create a short”. If you can’t see this feature you can upload vertical video under 60 seconds in length and tag it with #shorts in the title or description.

When using the feature via mobile tool (as of Oct 2020) it has very limited tools to assist with content creation but you can speed up your footage and set a timer for hands free recording.

While uploading the video as a normal video might give you a little more flexibility to record a vertical video and then edit it just like a normal video with overlays, music, transitions etc

  • Create: Creation is at the core of short-form video, and we want to make it easy and fun to create Shorts. We’re starting to test just a few new tools for creators and artists with our early beta in India:
    • multi-segment camera to string multiple video clips together,
    • The option to record with music from a large library of songs that will continue to grow,
    • Speed controls that give you the flexibility to be creative in your performance,
    • And a timer and countdown to easily record, hands-free.

Why make YouTube Shorts?

You have been on the YouTube platform for years and you have always been told to stick to horizontal rather than “ugly looking vertical£ videos – why start making vertical videos now?

YouTube wants to win the new young creator demographic away from TikTok and to do that they are pushing the feature very hard to viewers.

Your videos could show up under the first suggested video on the mobile app giving you a large boost of views. Adopt it early and you could see great results before EVERYONE uses it! Make eye catching relevant videos and you could get featured against established large youtube channels.

Imagine if you could be one of the first people on YouTube all those years ago. Or one of the first people to grow an audience on Twitter and Instagram… this is your chance at a fresh new medium, but this time its supercharged by YouTube!

Even YouTube is exited about the tool

Get discovered: Every month, 2 billion viewers come to YouTube to laugh, learn and connect. Creators have built entire businesses on YouTube, and we want to enable the next generation of mobile creators to also grow a community on YouTube with Shorts.

I have been testing YouTube shorts and seen huge jumps in views even when the channel has only 65 subscribers!

YouTube Shorts Explained [What, Where, How, When & Why?]

Where Can I See YouTube Shorts?

YouTube shorts are currently curated by YouTube and displayed under videos on the mobile app.

It has its own shelf that you can swap through and the youtube shorts normally match the topic of the main video above – for example if you are watching a tech tips video you might see tech related short stories.

YouTube Shorts Explained [What, Where, How, When & Why?] 1

What is YouTube Shorts sizes? ratio?

The standard aspect ratio for YouTube Shorts 9:16. YouTube may add more padding for optimal viewing. The padding is white by default, and dark gray when Dark theme is turned on.

Recommended resolution & aspect ratios for YouTube Shorts.

For 9:16 youtube shorts aspect ratio, encode at these resolutions:

2160p: 2160×3840
1440p: 1440×2560
1080p: 1080×1920
720p: 720×1280
480p: 480×854
360p: 360×640
240p: 240×426

Can I monetize YouTube Shorts? YouTube Shorts Monetization

As with all video platforms people want to know if they can monetize it – because what’s the point of a large audience if you can’t make some pocket money from it.

Can you monetize YouTube Shorts? – Initially YouTube Shorts are not being monetized by YouTube and they do not count towards the YouTube Partner Program watch time hours you need to qualify to monetize your channel. However, TikTok currently offers a monetization program for their videos so YouTube will follow suit in future.

YouTube Shorts FAQs

Does YouTube Shorts watch time count towards monetization?

I the YouTube Short is viewed as a short from a YouTube Shorts shelf under a view then the watch time does not count towards monetization totals. However, if the short is watched on the YouTube channel as a native standard video then it does count towards channel totals.

Do I Have To Pay To Make YouTube Shorts?

No, YouTube Shorts are free to anyone. You can make them using the mobile app by clicking the “+” icon at the bottom of the screen and clicking “Make A Short”. Alternatively, you and upload the vertical video that is under 60 seconds as a standard video and tag it with #shorts in the title or description.

 

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5 Ways To Find the Best Tags for Ranking Your YouTube Videos

There are 720,000 hours of video added to YouTube every day. So the chance of your latest offering being watched by a large audience is pretty slim.

Building a following on YouTube can be a challenging task; so you have to use every tool at your disposal to promote your video.

When considering how to promote your video, it’s essential to understand that YouTube is a search engine. The second biggest search engine after Google, in fact. So the meta-data you add to your video when you upload it (title, description, and tags), can play a part in attracting some initial views.

This post looks at one part of the meta-data – Youtube tags. What they are, how to add them, and gives you five ways to find the best tags for ranking your YouTube videos.

Here we go.

What Are YouTube Tags?

In their help section for content creators, YouTube says the following about tags;

“Tags are descriptive keywords you can add to your video to help viewers find your content.”

YouTube is plainly stating that tags are keywords. Should your tags match with the keywords a YouTube user searches for, then you have a chance of appearing in the search results.

However, they then go on to say;

“tags play a minimal role in your video’s discovery.”

Hmm, it sounds like you don’t need to use them then?

Well, if you are a top YouTuber and receive thousands of views in the first few hours after uploading a video, then maybe tags aren’t as important for you. However, if you have a smaller channel, you need to seek every edge, no matter how slight, to drive initial traffic.

The right 4 or 5-word tag added when you upload new content, can kickstart your views.

Once you gain that initial traffic, metrics like watchtime and engagement take over, and YouTube can choose to suggest your video in viewer’s feeds.

Tags Help YouTube Categorise Your Video.

Tags also play a role in helping YouTube decide the precise topic of your video. The English language is a wonderful thing, but it can sometimes be confusing – some words have more than one meaning. So tags can be used to tell YouTube the topic and purpose of your video.

Here’s an example. The video below is about ‘irons’. An iron can be a household item or a golf club. But, the title of the video doesn’t convey to YouTube which kind the video is about.

Golf iron or steam iron

But, YouTube can use the tags and other video meta-data to help categorise the content. The tags for this video leave no room for doubt that it’s about a household iron.

steam iron tags

How Do You Add YouTube Tags?

You add YouTube tags in the video details section of your YouTube Studio. Navigate to your list of videos and click the ‘Details’ icon.

adding tags instruction

Underneath the ‘Audience’ section, there is a text entry box to enter your tags. Tags can be more than a single word; type in the tags hitting return after each one. Alternatively, you can paste in a list you prepared elsewhere.

adding tags further instruction

How Many Tags Should You Use on YouTube?

This one is a little tricky. On the one hand, YouTube permits entry of up to 500 characters in the video tag section. On the other hand, YouTube warns against adding excessive tags in their help section:

Youtube warning for tag misuse

A study conducted by briggsby.com concluded that ideally, you should use less than 300 characters. Which, assuming you are using 3-4 word keyphrases, puts the ideal number of tags at 30-40.

One of the key takeaways of the study recommended that as long as you stay relevant to the video topic, use as many characters as you can manage.

What Should You Use for Your YouTube Tags?

The tags you choose for your video should ideally be 3-word or more keyphrases that describe the overall topic of your video AND the content more precisely.

For example, if you uploaded a video reviewing steam irons, then some of the tags might be;

  • Best steam iron
  • Top steam irons
  • Best steam iron for clothes
  • Rowenta steam iron
  • Tefal steam iron for clothes

As you can see, these tags anticipate the kinds of phrases someone might use when looking for reviews of steam irons. It’s also a good idea to use some related brand names in your list of tags if appropriate.

Using some 5-word or more key phrases in your tags is recommended too. Unless your YouTube channel is a powerhouse with thousands of subscribers, you are unlikely to rank in the search results for shorter 2 or 3-word key phrases.

You can, however, appear in the top results for longer keyword search phrases, though these will have lower search volumes and drive smaller traffic.

5 Ways To Put Together a List of YouTube Tags.

So how do you put your list of tags together?

It’s best if you produce a long list of many possible tag key phrases first, then whittle it down to the best 30 or so. Start a new document or spreadsheet and as you collect potential tags, add them to the list.

You may be able to use some of the tags in another video you are planning; keeping tag ideas together in a file is not a bad practice.

As promised, here are five ways to find the best YouTube tags for ranking.

1.Brainstorm

One way to come up with a list of tags for your YouTube video is to brainstorm a list of keywords that someone might use to search for your video.

Imagine you know little to nothing about the details included in your video. What might a person in that situation type into a search engine to find the information?

It may sound like a silly idea, but you can come up with some out of the ordinary key-phrases using this method. Pretending you know nothing about your video topic can draw out some keywords that your competitors may not be using.

It’s worth a moment of your time before you use the same tag suggestion tools that everyone else uses.

2.YouTube Autocomplete

Autocomplete is a feature that predicts search terms when a user begins typing in the search bar.

It is there to save the user time. Google says that autocomplete reduces typing by 25% and collectively saves over 200 years of typing-time every day!

Because autocomplete predicts what users are going to type it also supplies a useful list of multi-word key phrases.

Here is an example using the steam iron keyword. Adding in extra words, or even a single letter, will reveal lots of keywords you can use in your tags.

youtube autocomplete example

3.Rapidtags.io YouTube Tag Generator

Rapid Tags is a YouTube tag generator that suggests a list of tags based on a seed keyword. You can copy all the suggestions with one click and add them to your list of possibles.

Rapid Tag does say in their about section that some tags may not be totally suitable for you purposes and you should remove any that don’t describe your video well.

rapidtags example

4.vidIQ

vidIQ is a tool designed to help creators build an audience on YouTube. The software has multiple tools for YouTube channels; one being their Google Chrome plugin. The plugin displays additional information about a video directly within the desktop version of YouTube.

Part of the information displayed is the tags used by a video. So, you can view some videos similar to yours and harvest the tags from those videos to add to your list.

vidiq example

5.Ytubetool.com

Ytubetool is a free tool you can use to harvest tags from a video if you don’t want to use vidIQ, or can’t install a Google Chrome plugin.

Simply add the URL of any YouTube video, and the tool will display a list of tags used by the video. With one-click to copy; it’s more potential tags ideas to add to your master file.

ytubetool example

Conclusion.

Using tags in your YouTube meta-data is not the most significant factor in ranking a video on YouTube. However, tags can play a small part in attracting initial traffic to your video.

Tags can also help YouTube to categorise your video, especially if the words in your title have more than one meaning.

YouTube themselves admit that tags only play a small part in your video discovery. So perhaps tags are best thought of as the finishing touches to your YouTube SEO. Necessary, but don’t obsess over it.

 

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How to Make Money on YouTube Using Other People’s Videos

Making money on YouTube with other people’s content is certainly possible, though, as you might expect, there are ethical considerations depending on how you go about it.

If you just re-upload someone else’s content wholesale, without any kind of modification, and pass it off as your own, there is no question that it is wrong in every sense of the word, including YouTube’s rules and guidelines.

So, not only would you be doing something generally unpleasant, but you would also likely fall afoul of YouTube’s policies, and lose any monetary gain you might have had.

That being said, there are ways to make money using other people’s content on YouTube that are entirely within YouTube’s terms, and you can do it in ways that won’t have the YouTubers whose content you are using wishing ill fortune on you.

So let’s dive into how to make money on YouTube using other people’s videos!

How to Make Money on YouTube Using Other People's Videos

Stealing Content

There isn’t much more to say about this that we didn’t cover in the intro, but just to reiterate; taking another YouTuber’s content and re-uploading without their permission has very little going for it as a money-making tactic.

It will not make you many friends, you will be competing with the original video for views, and it will almost certainly be a short term thing as YouTube will eventually shut you down when they find out you are stealing content.

It’s best to steer clear of this method entirely.

Getting Permission

We’re going to discuss some methods here that, strictly speaking, could be done without permission from the YouTuber whose content you are using, but it’s always worth getting permission if you can, regardless of whether you need it.

If you can somehow get permission for it, even the above method of just taking someone else’s content and re-uploading it would be fine. We can’t think of many situations where the original creator would be okay with that, but it would be perfectly fine if they did.

But, as a general courtesy, it is nice to ask YouTuber’s if you can use their content, even if it’s only a small clip. And, who knows? They may even share your video.

Getting the permissions itself can be tricky, especially if the YouTuber doesn’t check their spam folder too often.

You should be able to find a contact email address for them in their channel’s “About” page (you may have to prove you’re not a bot in order to see it), though the existence of an email address doesn’t mean anyone is looking at the inbox.

You can also try pinging them on social media. What you want to avoid, however, is spamming them with a barrage of messages across different platforms.

Try to leave a little bit of breathing space between attempts to contact them, as waking up to dozens of notifications in different apps all from the same person may be a bit off-putting.

In your messages, be polite, and it can’t hurt to throw in a compliment about their content. After all; you are wanting to use it. Y

ou should also let them know what you are planning to do with the content you are seeking permission to use, and be honest. Nothing can burn bridges like getting permission to use someone’s content for one thing and then using it for something else, especially if the thing you end up using it for is something the original creator would object to.

How to Make Money on YouTube Using Other People's Videos 1

Reused Content

As this post is talking about making money specifically, we need to address YouTube’s stance on reused content.

There is a lot of content on YouTube (and other parts of the web) that are fair game for you to use on your channel from a legal standpoint. Creative Commons content and content in the public domain being the main examples of this.

However, being legally allowed to use content does not mean YouTube will let you monetise it. Their monetisation policies specifically call out “reused content” as something that cannot be monetised.

What this means in practical terms is that even though you are allowed—both legally and under YouTube’s terms—to take a video that is licensed under Creative Commons (as long as you give full attribution) and post it on your channel in full, YouTube will not allow you to monetise it unless you have made sufficient modification to it. How these modifications might look is a significant part of the rest of this post, so keep reading.

What About Fair Use?

Fair use is a convention through which copyrighted material can be used without the express permission of the copyright holder or a licensing agreement to use the content in some circumstances.

The content you produce must be “transformative”, which can include commentary and parody, as well as some other kinds of content.

Fair use is often misunderstood to be some kind of shield to protect you against copyright strikes, but that is not how it works. Fair use is a defence—not a black and white policy—and it is determined on a case-by-case basis. That means that, even if you were entirely within the spirit of fair use, you would still have to go to court and make your case if you faced a copyright owner who is aggressive enough with their legal team to take it that far.

One of the problems with fair use on YouTube is their automated content recognition system, which has no concept of fair use and will flag your videos regardless if it recognises copyrighted material.

As sad a state of affairs as it may seem, it would generally make your life much easier if you steered clear of copyrighted content altogether.

How to Make Money on YouTube Using Other People’s Videos

Now that we’ve told you what you can’t do, let’s get into what you can do.

Here we are going to outline some different ways you can make money on YouTube using other people’s videos, as well as how you would go about it and any other relevant information.

Reaction Videos

Reaction videos are more popular than ever and are not limited to movie trailers. Just about any viral video can be good fodder for a reaction video, though it can help to stick within a particular genre or type of video.

For example, Stevie Knight is a popular reaction YouTuber who reacts to rap songs specifically. For the super famous YouTubers, reaction videos can be about anything because the audience is there to see them, whatever they are doing. But for us mere mortals, it’s probably best to find a niche and stick to it.

One of the critical aspects of reaction videos, as obvious as it sounds, is reacting. If you sit and watch a nine-minute video, pulling the occasional face and barely saying anything, you’re not going to make much of an impression.

And you may fall afoul of YouTube’s reuse policy, as they could deem it not to be sufficiently different from the original video.

Needless to say, this type of video is more suited to YouTubers with a lot of personality.

You are banking on people wanting to see you. They can go and watch the original video easily enough, or check out one of the other reaction YouTubers covering this video, and if you are bland and unentertaining, they may do just that.

Be yourself, as well.

Being a reaction, YouTuber will quickly fall apart if you are putting on a persona. Try not to worry about pleasing everyone; it’s an impossible task.

Just be yourself and be consistent with your videos.

Breakdown Videos

Breakdown videos are very similar to reaction videos but a little more technical in nature.

Where a reaction video is all about the… well… reaction, breakdown videos go into detail about the content itself. In fact, the YouTuber we mentioned above, Stevie Knight, would be a good example for this kind of video as well, as he doesn’t just react to rap music, he breaks down the lyrics.

Breakdown videos are also common for political and social commentary, as well as movie trailers and speeches. The aim of a breakdown is either to respond to things in the video or to give your unique insight to the viewers.

If you decide to go down this path, you make sure you have something to offer.

Unlike reaction videos, where a lively personality and a bit of comedy can be enough, a breakdown video needs to add something to the conversation. If you are breaking down the latest Marvel movie trailer, make sure you are well-versed in Marvel lore, so that you can spot things that regular viewers may miss.

Clip Videos

Clip videos can be on a range of topics, such as “Top 10” videos, or “This Week In…”. An example of this can be found on GameDevHQ’s channel, where they have a weekly series that lists off some of the most interesting projects being developed in the Unity game engine.

This kind of video is very appealing to those more camera-shy YouTubers out there, as it doesn’t require you to be on-camera to make content. It would typically take the form of a series of clips with voice-over narration saying something about each clip.

In these cases, as long as the clips are not too long, you can usually claim fair use with regards to your use of the clip, however, as we stated above, fair use, even when used correctly, is no guarantee that you will be free to use the content.

It would be best to get permission from the content owners first, but if you keep the clips short, you should be okay.

How to Make Money Doing Covers on YouTube 6

Become a Music Content Aggregator/Promoter

This one is a little less conventional, but you could become a channel for promoting unknown musicians.

The idea here would be that you are putting the music videos out on a channel that has more exposure—benefitting the artist—while you run advertisements on those videos.

Whether or not you cut the artists in on the revenue would be up to you, although it will undoubtedly be easier to get artists on board if you are going to pay them.

The main problem with this kind of channel is that it is challenging to get off of the ground, as you need a significant number of subscribers to draw in more popular artists.

One trick could be to use Creative Commons music in the beginning. You would not be able to monetise these videos due to YouTube’s reuse policy, but you wouldn’t be able to monetise in the beginning anyway due to the requirements for joining YouTube’s Partner Programme.

The goal would be to build the channel’s reputation and following up to the point that you can entice up and coming artists to release music through your channel, and hopefully reach a point where all of the content you publish is original.

You can even use cover songs to get your foot in the door and leverage attention. If you need help in making money from cover songs then check out my deep dive blog where I break down the legal points, the fast traffic tips and some great tweaks you can use to get the maximum impact for minimal impact on your pocket.

Mashup Videos

This one requires quite a bit of ability with audio editing software, but you could make mashups of existing music videos.

These tend to be popular when the original videos are from contrasting genres, making the final result something of a novelty that will interest fans of both genres.

One of the most well-known examples of this kind of video is an interesting mashup between Justin Beiber and Slipknot. The less similar to the original songs, the better, or you may get hit with YouTube’s Content ID.

It should be noted that there are legal obligations when using copyrighted music, even if it is only small samples.

You probably won’t end up in a courtroom if you get caught—it is far more likely you’ll get a copyright strike or your ad revenue diverted to the copyright holder—but the possibility is always there when you break copyright law.

What we’re saying here is, strictly speaking, you should get the proper licensing sorted with any copyright holders before creating mashups video. This blog does not endorse doing anything that breaks the law.

You could always license a song from a music supplier such as LickD where you can make cover-songs or mashups and not have to worry about revenue share or copyright clam for the audio. They have a wide selection of popular tracks and you even get your first track for free when you sign up.

Conclusions

You may have noticed that there is still quite a bit of work involved in these various methods.

Unfortunately, there is no way of making money on YouTube with other people’s videos that is simultaneously allowed by YouTube, legal, and does not require some effort on your part.

However you could always try stock video content (for example I use storyblocks for all my b-roll) to pad out your creations and all you have to do is talk over the clips – you wouldn’t even need to show your face.

If that sounds perfect I have 12 Channel Ideas Without Showing Your Face just for you!

Categories
TIPS & TRICKS

Do Dislikes Matter on YouTube?

There are two ways to look at the topic dislikes and whether they matter. The first way is from your audience’s perspective; the second way is from the perspective of the YouTube algorithm.

Both of these perspectives are important, as they will ultimately determine how successful your videos are, though the impact of dislikes on each is markedly different.

So, do dislikes matter on YouTube? Everyone is in a rush these days, of course, so if you’re looking for a quick answer, it is yes. Dislikes do matter on YouTube, and for a variety of reasons. But they do not have a negative affect on ranking or views. 

Is this why people beg for likes? Now that is a completely different blog posts, I deep dive into why people ask for likes here.

If you would like to learn more about what those reasons are, and how they affect your channel, read on.

Do Dislikes Matter on YouTube?

Dislikes and the YouTube Algorithm

Dislikes do have a negative effect on your channel when it comes to the almighty algorithm, but it is an indirect negative effect.

YouTube places a great deal of significance on interaction and engagement, and dislikes fall under that umbrella. So, counter-intuitive as it may seem, dislikes can actually be seen as a positive thing by the YouTube algorithm if there are no other negative factors in play. But what might those other negative factors look like?

Well, if someone watches your video for twenty seconds, hits dislike, and closes the browser, that’s a bad thing. As far as YouTube is concerned, they didn’t like your content, and they left.

In terms of YouTube goals, that’s about as close to a cardinal sin as it gets.

If, on the other hand, they disliked your video but they watched the whole thing, and then went on to watch more videos on YouTube, well, from YouTube’s point of view, you held their attention, got some engagement out of them, and kept them on the site. That’s all good news as far as YouTube is concerned.

Now, even in that last example, there are adverse effects to your channel. YouTube may not penalise your channel’s exposure for dislikes if you are still getting plenty of watch time and engagement, but they do use those dislikes to gauge personal interest. That means there’s a higher chance that the user who disliked your videos will not get your content recommended to them in future.

Furthermore, YouTube may also decide not to recommend your content to other users with similar interests.

So as you can see, YouTube will not directly punish your channel for getting a lot of dislikes, but the indirect results of those dislikes could hamper your growth nonetheless.

But you may want to look into how to boost your retention and keep them watching for longer.

Why Do YouTubers Ask for Likes? 2

Dislikes and Your Viewers

Much as there are two ways to view the negative impact of dislikes on your channel, there are two significant ways to consider dislikes in relation to your viewers. The first of which is how they react to dislikes on your videos.

The impact that a high number of dislikes has on a viewers desire to watch a video is a little hard to quantify. From a purely anecdotal perspective, it doesn’t seem to make a great deal of difference.

Many people seem to start watching the content based on the thumbnails and titles and don’t even notice dislikes until it occurs to them to leave a dislike of their own. That being said, it is hard to think of a way in which dislikes would not have a negative effect on a viewers willingness to check your content out. At best, they might be indifferent.

The more important thing here is – what those dislikes are telling you about your content?

Remember, disliking a channel takes effort. Granted, it is not much effort, but more effort than not doing anything. YouTubers regularly ask their viewers to like their videos because it works, and it works because viewers just don’t think to hit like button a lot of the time.

What that tells you about your dislikes is that if someone was negatively affected enough to the effort of hitting dislike on your video. In other words; they meant it.

Of course, not every dislike is created equally—especially on the Internet. You certainly should not obsess over every dislike you get, but if you are consistently getting a high number of dislikes on your videos, it might be a sign that you need to rethink your content.

Why Do YouTubers Ask for Likes?

As for what constitutes a concerning number of dislikes, only you can accurately judge that. It is not a simple matter of more dislikes equals worse content for some channels, as there are channels that deal in controversial content, such as political commentary. For channels like this, dislikes should be judged proportionally, rather than as pure numbers.

If your like to dislike ratio is roughly half and half on average, you should take it as a warning sign.

And, just for a moment, even though it is not the target audience of this blog, it’s worth addressing people who are purely YouTube viewers, rather than creators.

It is important to remember that dislikes can happen for a wide range of reasons. It may be that the video quality was poor, or that the title was clickbaity. It could be a purely ideological thing as we mentioned above, or merely a divisive issue—or a divisive YouTuber. Dislikes are not a worthless metric to judge a video’s worth by any means, but let them be your only metric.

Dislikes and Monetisation

A question that will undoubtedly come up around this topic is what impact dislikes have on the earning power of your YouTube channel. Much like the impact on your exposure in the YouTube recommendation algorithm, dislikes do have a negative impact on your earnings, but only in an indirect sense.

Indeed, it is the very same mechanism that can lower your exposure that would also lower your earnings. In short, if fewer people are seeing your video due to fewer recommendations from YouTube, your earnings will obviously suffer.

Another link between dislikes and monetisation comes from the fact that controversial content—which is more likely to attract dislikes—may also turn advertisers off of your content. In this case, both the dislikes and the lack of advertising revenue are a symptom of the same thing, rather than one being caused by the other.

Do Dislikes Matter on YouTube? 1

Common Causes of Dislikes

Understanding when dislikes are an indicator that your channel needs attention is only part of the battle. You also need to be able to work out what your channel needs in order to be set back on the right path. To that end, let’s look at some of the more common causes of an increased number of dislikes.

And, just to be clear, we are talking about objective problems here. The things we mentioned earlier, such as divisive issues, cannot be “fixed”. But if you run that kind of channel, you will know all about that.

Fix Poor Video or Audio Quality

If you’ve ever tried to watch a video where the visual quality is poor or perhaps the audio quality is not great in a video where listening to the audio is essential to the content, you will understand the frustration that it can cause.

Of course, improving the quality of your videos can be easier said than done. Recording equipment costs money, and not everyone can afford the latest and greatest cameras and microphones. But if the quality of your videos is causing your channel problems, it should at least be made a priority.

And you should certainly look into any methods of improving your video quality that do not involve spending hundreds or thousands of dollars on new gear.

The good news is that if you are getting dislikes on your video because of the quality, you are doing something right. It means people have found their way to your video in the first place, meaning you must have done a good job at titling your video and creating a thumbnail for it, and you must be providing content that people want to see. Compared to figuring that side of YouTube out, improving the quality of your videos is a relatively easy task.

Avoid Clickbait

One of the most surefire ways to generate a lot of dislikes is to use clickbait titles and thumbnails. Understand, when we say “clickbait” we mean the traditional sense of the word—as much as any Internet slang can be traditional—where the title and thumbnail are designed to bring viewers while not necessarily being representative of the content in the video.

There has been a shift in the use of the word recently to refer to any title that is tailored towards catching a viewers interest, regardless of whether it is an accurate representation of the video. In our opinion, a title that accurately portrays what the video is about and makes people want to watch it is a resounding success.

The problem comes when those titles and thumbnails bring viewers in but do not deliver on the promise that got them there. Short cuts rarely work when it comes to YouTube growth, and this is no different. You may see high numbers to begin with, but the annoyance and frustration at your video’s lack of delivery on its promises will generate dislikes. And, whether through a bad reputation or YouTube’s lack of recommendations—or both—any success you gain will start to dwindle.

Stick to the Script

The script, in this case, does not have to be a literal script—we’re not saying that the only path to YouTube success is through carefully scripting your videos and never improvising. What we mean here is that your videos should have a clear purpose, be coherent in the delivery of that point, and not waste the viewers time.

Again, there is a lot of wiggle room in this point. It would be a boring platform indeed if every video put across only the critical aspects of the topic and nothing else. But there is a balance to be struck between a bit of colour and personality, and rambling and waffling on.

Make your videos distinct. Give your viewers a reason to watch your content over someone else’s who covers similar things. But anything that isn’t serving that purpose or delivering the stated content of the video; consider cutting it from your gameplan.

Always Improve

Okay, it’s not exactly the most actionable advice, but a failure to grow as a YouTube channel can also cause you to start picking up dislikes. Even the most diehard of fans will eventually start to tire of your content if it feels stale and overdone.

Being engaged with your community is an excellent way to gauge what might work for your channel, saving you some of the trial and error of making videos and seeing what works.

Of course, we don’t recommend pivoting your whole channel overnight, but introducing new elements and trying new things is rarely a bad idea.

And in those cases, the dislikes can help you determine what works and what doesn’t.

Conclusions

Dislikes can undoubtedly point to problems with your content, though a dislike in and of itself is not necessarily a cause for concern. It is unlikely that the dislikes themselves will hurt your channel, however.

Instead, the damage to your channel will come from the cause of those dislikes, which makes it no less important to address a disproportionate amount of negative feedback on your channel, even if that feedback isn’t actively harming it.

Dislikes can be a great indicator that there are things that need fixing about your content, so it pays to keep a close eye on them. Remember to judge your channel on its own merit, though.

If you are making unobjectionable content—such as software tutorials—you can probably take dislikes as a pure metric on how good your content is. But if you are making something a little less wholesome, such as political commentary or videos about controversial topics, you should probably expect a certain amount of dislikes as a matter of course.

Try to gauge what is normal for your channel, and judge any changes based on that starting point.

And, remember, you can’t please everyone. Don’t ignore dislikes entirely, but don’t let them dictate your channel either. As always, you should strive to find a healthy balance.

Categories
SOCIAL MEDIA TIPS & TRICKS YOUTUBE

Am I Too Old to Start a YouTube Channel?

Absolutely not.

Okay, that’s not really the end of the post; we’ll dive into this topic as we do with all things YouTube, but if you’re looking for the quick answer to “am I too old to start a YouTube channel?”; – No. You are not too old to start a YouTube channel. Whatever your age. As the saying goes, “It’s never too late to start something new”.

It is, however, perfectly natural to worry about being too old to jump into something that, from the outside, looks very much like a young person’s game.

There several reasons why you might think it’s not for you, and we’re going to lay the biggest ones out for all to see, and then tell you exactly why they shouldn’t stop you from starting up your own channel.

Am I Too Old to Start a YouTube Channel?

Let’s Talk Numbers

It can help to get over your fear of being “too old” for YouTube if you know some of the numbers around age on the platform. For example, even though YouTube is thought of as a very young person’s platform, you might be surprised to learn that the average age of a YouTuber is closer to thirty. Twenty-seven, to be exact.

Of course, that’s still pretty young, but remember; that’s the average age. That includes extremely popular YouTuber’s that are as young as 16. And, though not strictly in keeping with YouTube’s terms of service, there are YouTuber’s like EthanGamer, who started his channel at seven years of age and had hit a million subscribers by the age of ten!

We realise that highlighting these incredibly young YouTubers may seem counter-intuitive to the point of this post, but remember, we’re discussing the average here. YouTuber’s like Ethan—who even now is only fourteen years old, bring that average age down considerably. For the average to be up around twenty-seven years old, there has to older YouTubers to balance it out.

YouTubers like ThePianoGuys—one of whom is over fifty years old—and Adam Savage—fifty-three years old—prove that you don’t need to be a baby to get going on YouTube. And those are just popular examples. ThePianoGuys rank inside the top 100 YouTube channels (discounting organisations like VEVO), and Adam Savage has over five million subscribers.

There are YouTubers like Gamer Grandma who has a much more modest—yet still very impressive—410k subscribers for her gaming channel. She is ninety years old. And there are many more YouTubers like her who, while not as successful in terms of subscribers counts, are nevertheless enjoying plenty of popularity in a wide range of niches, such as Peter Oakley, an eighty-six-year-old autobiographical vlogger.

It’s also worth noting that YouTube’s reputation as a platform for younger people stems from the earlier days when it really was a platform for younger people. But YouTube has been around for a while now, and those more youthful people have grown up. For example, YouTube veteran, Philip DeFranco, started YouTubing at the tender age of twenty-one years old.

These days he is thirty-four years old and still going strong. To illustrate this, we’ve picked out a few YouTubers from the top fifty channels by subscriber count. Obviously, we’ve left out the large organisations and YouTube channels for big celebrities. Nobody should be looking at T-Series, Eminem, or Ed Sheeran for examples of how to succeed on YouTube.

Who? Age Subscriber Count (2020)
PewDiePie 31 106 Million
Knondzilla 31 58 Million
HoySoyGerman 30 41 Million
Filipe Neto 32 39 Million
Fernanfloo 27 36 Million
Luisito Comunica 29 33 Million

 

So, let’s get to those reasons why you might feel too old to start a YouTube channel, and why you shouldn’t let them stop you.

Am I Too Old to Start a YouTube Channel? 1

Personality Clash

As we get older, we tend to become more conservative. Not in a political sense—well, actually, in a political sense as well—but in the sense that we become more introverted as time goes on.

It’s perfectly natural, and it happens to most of us, but on a platform full of bright-eyed, cheerful souls all gleefully welcoming viewers to their videos with bubbly optimism, it is easy to feel intimidated by the prospect of joining that world yourself.

Fortunately, there are many ways to put your videos together, and there is absolutely space for more introverted YouTubers. Many successful channels feature quiet, reserved personalities, people who don’t show themselves on camera, even videos where the YouTuber in question never features at all!

The main ingredient to a successful YouTube channel is providing content that people want to see, and the way you deliver that content is the seasoning. Your particular seasoning maybe to some people’s taste and not to others, but it is the main ingredients that will be the primary determiner of success. So, focus on those main ingredients, and don’t worry about whether you come across as cheerful enough.

And, besides, putting on a personality that just isn’t you is a surefire way to burnout and lost the desire to make videos altogether.

Can YouTubers Control Which Ads Are Shown? 5

Viewer Demographics

Even if YouTubers themselves are trending older, the people watching YouTube are still young, right?

One of the key aspects of building an audience is being able to appeal to that audience, and there has always been a natural culture-gap between younger and older people.

Not an insurmountable one, of course, and as we mentioned above, the main content of your videos is a more significant factor than the way you deliver it, but it is there nonetheless.

It is certainly not impossible to appeal to people outside of your age bracket, but you might be surprised to learn that 35+ and 55+ are two of the fastest-growing demographics when it comes to people watching YouTube.

Again, it is not impossible to appeal to other age groups than your own, but if you are firmly locked into your own age demographic, there are plenty of viewers for you attract.

Am I Too Old to Start a YouTube Channel? 2

Topics

Another reason older people might be dissuaded from creating a YouTube channel is the lack of ideas for engaging content.

Some of the most popular videos on YouTube involve young, handsome people dropping heavy things onto trampolines from a great height, or makeup tutorials, gaming videos, or any number of other things that are decidedly younger in scope.

It can be very easy to look at these videos and think that you have nothing to offer.

However if you need some guidance I have pulled together a list of “older” youtubers within the silver surfer bracket that command huge audiences and prove that age is merely a number and not a road block.

The first point of order here is that you should not let arbitrary limitations hold you back. We’re not saying start-up a parkour channel at the grand old age of eighty-five, but anything you are physically capable of doing should not be considered off the table. Grandma Gamer, who we mentioned earlier, is a prime example of that.

That being said, even if you don’t want to tackle something that might be considered a little young for you, there is no shortage of topics and ideas and niches on YouTube. We mentioned earlier about the growing number of older watchers, and those older YouTube viewers have interests that are similarly skewed.

Don’t get bogged down trying to appeal to a younger audience if what that audience wants isn’t something you are interested in. YouTube viewers span a broad spectrum of interests, from gaming channels to life hacks, from keyboard modding videos to reviews of historical military rations.

Can YouTubers Control Which Ads Are Shown? 6

Finding Your Place

We have talked about not getting held back by misconceptions of age on YouTube, and what kind of content you could make, but how do you go about finding your voice and choosing your niche on YouTube?

The first thing to address is why you want to make content in the first place. If you have no clear motive, you will struggle to maintain any kind of momentum in your YouTube career. It would, of course, be immensely helpful if that motive aligned with your own interests.

Not only are you far more likely to stick at it if you are genuinely interested in your content, but you are also more likely to make more engaging content in the first place.

Now, there may be other factors in play as to why you are starting a YouTube channel. Perhaps it is a companion channel to something else, such as a blog, a podcast, or a business. Unfortunately, not every venture is a labour of love.

And even if you are making content around a subject you are passionate about; it might sometimes feel like hard work, but there is no sense in making life harder for yourself than it has to be.

There are also people who just enjoy the act of making YouTube content itself, and perhaps you are one of them. People like this often end up vlogging because talking about yourself is a subject we can all be experts in. However, combine a simple desire to make YouTube content with the introverts we mentioned above, and you have a recipe for internal conflict.

If it is the process of making content that appeals to you, but the thought of sitting in front of a camera and talking about yourself a few times a week is unappealing, consider making your videos about something you like, even if you are not an expert in that thing.

YouTube viewers can be very forgiving as long as you are honest with them. And, if you are open about your lack of expertise, you may even find viewers helping you out from time to time.

It can help to do your research before getting started. If you have a particular type of content in mind, find successful channels that are making that kind of content and see what they are doing. Of course, you shouldn’t be looking to copy anyone, but if you see common themes across different channels in your desired niche, there may be a reason for it. That being said, don’t blindly copy themes just because you’ve seen them crop up a lot.

Always try to understand why people are doing what they are doing before using that method yourself.

And, since age is the focal point of this post, it may help to study channels by other YouTubers your age, and see what they are doing. Do they have a young audience? And if so, how are they engaging that audience? Or, if their audience is more on par with their own age, how are they approaching things differently to the younger content creators?

YouTube may still be young, but has been around for a long time in Internet terms, and there it is full of examples of success from all walks of life.

Also, while we would never advocate you starting a channel on something you don’t like, if you do like something that might be considered a typically younger interest, there is plenty of clout to be had in the novelty factor of older people doing younger things, as people like former Vine star and current YouTuber, Jason Nash, have shown.

Jason has essentially made a successful career out of being “too old”, and now has a very popular channel, as shown by the three million subscribers he currently has. In this case, Jason’s age has not only not held him back, but it has also played an active part in his success.

Is It Legal to Make YouTube Videos from Books?

Embrace Your Age

Growing older is a natural part of life, and one we all have to come to terms with eventually.

However—continued advances in medical science, not to mention a much better awareness of health concerns in the workplace and at home—have led to us not only living longer lives on average but living fuller lives in our later years.

People are increasingly taking up—and excelling at—new professions in their forties and fifties. Pensioners are discovering new hobbies in their retirement. And we’ve already talked about the eighty years and up YouTubers who are enjoying great success on the platform.

The paradigm of working your whole life so that you could enjoy a few nice holidays in your retirement are long past, and lots of people are finding fulfillment in their golden years.

If you suspect YouTube could be part of that fulfillment for you, don’t let any stigma about your age get in the way.

Categories
HOW TO GET MORE VIEWS ON YOUTUBE MARKETING TIPS & TRICKS YOUTUBE

How To Promote Your YouTube Channel [4 Free Places]

When you start out as a YouTuber, you are trying to achieve many things at once.

 

Most of your time is spent on thinking about content ideas, filming it, and learning how to edit it into a great video. With, perhaps, a bit of time dreaming about what you’ll spend your YouTube earnings on too!

 

But, eventually, you get to a point and think ‘hang on, how do I promote my youtube channel?’

 

You’re working from a standing start. You don’t have the budget for ad buys or an existing following from another platform to leverage.

 

So how do you promote your YouTube channel for free?

 

Well, to get the ball rolling, and the subscribers racking up, you’ll need to spend a little elbow grease. Do some hard work. Because at the start you need to do all you can to get your name out there.

 

This means cross-promotion on social media networks. You need to be your own distribution network at the start, and create a spiderweb of content to catch your viewers.  Then, well,  it’s down to the quality of your content to then turn those initial viewers into long-term subscribers.

 

This blog post covers the big-four social media platforms you should be cross-posting your content on, how often you should do it, and what kind of material to publish.

 

Let’s get going.

Crazy YouTube Stats : Views, Money, Users, Traffic & more!

 

A Brief Word of Caution.

 

The following tips won’t work unless you are a consistent YouTuber.

 

You can undertake all the promotional activity you like, but if you don’t regularly upload compelling content to YouTube, then your channel is set for failure. Mr Beast uploaded content for five years before his channel took off. Five years!

 

It takes dedication and consistency to be a successful YouTuber.

Promote Your YouTube Channel on Twitter

Twitter is the first platform you should be cross-posting on. There are 186 million daily active users, tweeting about every conceivable niche. So you can definitely find an audience for your content here.

 

The content you’ll post to Twitter has a very short shelf life, in most cases, only a matter of hours. So it’s fine to post out lots of links to your content.

 

Look for a few popular hashtags that tend to trend frequently, rather than one-offs that happen to be trending at any particular moment. Don’t copy spammers and use hashtags that are not related to your content. You’ll only end up annoying Twitter users.

 

While following hashtags on Twitter is not possible, people do have favourites that they regularly look up so they can see the latest.

 

If users see your content under that hashtag, and it’s excellent, then you may get a new follower. Once you gain followers, then you can post out links to your channel and invite them to watch your content over on YouTube.

 

Think about what you tweet, though. Before you tweet, think carefully about what you’ll write – ask yourself ‘why would people care about this tweet?’ You have to engage people.

 

Look at the example below, posted with the phrase ‘New Vlog is up!!!’. Who cares!? Maybe his mother, but not anyone else.

How To Promote Your YouTube Channel [4 Free Places]

Instead, give the Twitter users a reason to click on your link. The illustration below is much better.

How To Promote Your YouTube Channel [4 Free Places] 1

 

Also, make sure to separate your link from the hashtags. Both are hyperlinks. So if your content is next to the hashtags, then fat thumbs can mean you could miss a potential viewer.

How To Promote Your YouTube Channel [4 Free Places] 2

Promote Your YouTube Channel on Facebook

Two excellent places to share your new content on Facebook are on your own Facebook branding Page and in Facebook groups.

 

Create your own brand page. You won’t have any followers, to begin with, but post your videos there anyway. It won’t help your video to rank on YouTube but can help your video to rank for Google searches

 

The place to post your videos to promote your Youtube channel is in the Facebook Groups. With over 1.5 billion daily users and 100 million hours of video watched daily, there is certain to be an audience for your content there.

 

How To Promote Your YouTube Channel [4 Free Places] 3

The best part is that Facebook has already niched down the audiences for you. Whatever topic area you make your videos around, there is a place for you to share them on Facebook.

 

If you need more tips on how to promote your videos on facebook check out my deep dive on facebook marketing and how it can explode channel growth.

Tips for Promoting Youtube Content in Facebook Groups

 

  • When searching for groups to post your content to, make sure it contains enough people to engage with. There are plenty of groups with only a handful of members; keep searching until you find a large one.
  • For some Facebook Groups, activity drops over time. So, even if there is a large membership for a group, check the frequency of posts to make sure that it is worth your time to engage with it.
  • How you act in a group, once you have joined and been given access, matters. You have to engage with the group and be helpful. There is no point in joining a group to spam a link to your videos every once in a while. Instead, participate in the conversation, be helpful where you can, and when it’s appropriate, then share a link to your content. If you don’t, you’ll likely end up banned from the group.

 

Promote Your Youtube Channel on Instagram

 

Instagram is an ideal place to help build your YouTube audience.

 

Depending on the type of content you make for YouTube, you may be OK with using your existing Instagram account. If you don’t want to mix up your content with your personal Instagram usage, then create a new one specifically for your channel.

 

But it’s up to you.  If you are the main focus of your YouTube channel, and ‘behind-the-scenes’ content might be valuable to followers, so use your existing account. If your YouTube channel is in a niche where you don’t show your face, then set up a fresh account.

 

Use Instagram to build up a following in your topic area.  Spend some time browsing relevant hashtags to get an understanding of the type of content that is popular, then set out to emulate it.

 

 

Create Youtube Teasers

 

One of the best uses of Instagram to promote your YouTube channel is to create short 15-second teaser clips. Teaser clips can intrigue and draw Instagram users over to your YouTube channel.

 

Why should you take the time to create a teaser clip? Well, if you only share a thumbnail or a link to your YouTube video, then users can’t see if your content is right for them.

 

A teaser is different and operates like a film trailer made by the big Hollywood movie studios. You intrigue and invite your potential audience to watch the full thing.

 

So, after you finish editing your latest video for YouTube, create a cut down version as well for Instagram.

 

You can use your video editing software, or even better use a tool like Placeit to produce a compelling teaser. Placeit lets you quickly create teasers for Instagram (and other platforms) with handy templates and stock graphics.

How To Promote Your YouTube Channel [4 Free Places] 4

 

Promote Your YouTube Channel on TikTok

 

The new kid on the block. Tik Tok divides opinion, some love the brash new social sharing platform, others criticise child safety and privacy issues. But, no-one can deny its reach.

 

It’s the new Vine, the platform to share short snappy videos, and there is a massive audience on this hot fresh platform.

 

TikTok has experienced incredible growth since its launch in 2016. The TikTok app has been downloaded over 2 billion times and now has over 800 million active users.

 

Use TikTok to post 15-second teaser clips like the ones you made for Instagram. Make sure to add a link to your YouTube channel in your bio, and direct people to your bio in your teaser clip.

 

Once you become as popular as Mr Beast, you can forget the profile link and afford to be sassy instead.

How To Promote Your YouTube Channel [4 Free Places] 5

 

Conclusion

When looking for ways to promote your YouTube channel, don’t overlook the free options. Yes, it can be tempting to spend money you don’t have on ads and try and spend your way to success.

 

But YouTube is a long-term undertaking. You have to do the right things, regularly, to make a success of your channel.  You’ll run out of advertising budget before you attract enough followers to make your channel a cash earning machine.

 

Look instead to the big social media players. There are millions of daily active users on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and TikTok.  Get strategic and make promotional content for your channel to post on those platforms.

 

And make sure to do it right. You can spot spam posts yourself, so make sure not to post spam for others to ignore. Become a part of the conversation, help out other users, and when it’s right, direct them to your channel on YouTube.

 

Get the above right and you can give you channel the kick start it needs on YouTube.

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DEEP DIVE ARTICLE SOCIAL MEDIA TIPS & TRICKS YOUTUBE

YouTube Equipment on a Budget

Getting together the necessary equipment for YouTubing can pose quite a problem for those of us on a budget.

After all, cameras are expensive, and lighting rigs? What about acoustic treatment? All of these things cost money, and buying low-quality equipment most likely won’t improve the quality of your videos, and may even harm your channel overall.

Still, YouTube is far from a sure thing when it comes to generating an income, so spending significant amounts of cash on cameras and microphones can be hard to justify. Fortunately, “budget” doesn’t have to mean poor quality—you just need to know what you’re looking for. Of course, if it were that easy, there’d be no need for posts like this one!

Now as long as you have mastered YouTube Equipment for beginners – maybe you want some cost effective ideas for some upgrades – let’s get into our guide to the world of YouTube equipment on a budget.

Cameras

Let’s start with your primary bit of kit. Camera’s are not just essential if you want to record video, they can also be the only piece of gear you need if you are trying to make the most of your budget.

Here are three great options for YouTubers on a budget.

Logitech C930e

Starting our list off, we have the Logitech C930e, a webcam. Now, webcams are not the best option when it comes to YouTube… or any kind of video capture situation for that matter.

For reasons perhaps known only to webcam manufacturers, there has been very little improvement in the standards of webcam video quality for nearly a decade. In fact, the only thing webcams really excel at is live-streaming. Still, when it comes to budget video recording equipment, the C930e offers the best bang for your buck, and if you pair it with a decent budget lighting setup, you should be able to get some very respectable video out of it.

Obviously, there are some physical limitations with a webcam. If you want to shoot videos on the move, you’re going to need something that can operate standalone, and this isn’t it.

So, on to our next pick.

GoPro Hero6 or Hero7

GoPro has made a name for themselves in the sports footage market. They are typically the first name to come to mind whenever someone wants to strap a camera to their head and jump off a mountain, or something similar. What doesn’t always get as much attention is just how good it is as a pure camera.

You’re going to be looking at 3-4x the cost of the c930e, but that is still around half the half to a third of the cost of a Canon EOS 80D with a lens, which is a popular camera for YouTubers who aren’t on a budget. And the difference in quality is significant.

Furthermore, the Hero is much better at getting a great shot out of any environment and lighting situation.

Canon T7i

We’re stretching the definition of “budget” here. Still, given that the next tier of cameras easily crosses into the four digits in the price department, we think it’s fair to include this one as a higher-end budget camera.

The Canon T7i is a fully-fledged DSLR, which is the top dog when it comes to camera quality. While this may be a budget DSLR, it will still produce better results than just about anything you might find cheaper.

It should be noted that DSLRs are a little more involved than something like a webcam, or a GoPro. For one thing, you need to buy lenses for your camera. If you hit eBay and find a T7i that’s heavily discounted over the average price, you might be buying one without a lens. Like the GoPro, these cameras are standalone, so you can take them out for shooting on location.

Cameras like this are designed to handle a range of additional components, such as camera-mounted lighting, and external audio sources, making them ideal for portable filming setups.

Comparison Table

Product Max Resolution Standalone? Approx. Cost
Logitch c930e 1080 @ 30fps No £100
GoPro Hero 7 4K @ 60fps Yes £280
Canon T7i 1080 @ 60fps Yes £500

For further cameras and equipment suggestions check out my equipment lists on my resources page – I list all my current equipment and some killer discounts on cheap starter gear.

Microphones

It’s important to remember that all of the above suggestions for cameras have their own built-in microphone. Now, these are far from the best audio ever recorded, but they are more than serviceable if you can’t afford to pair them with a separate audio setup.

However, if you are looking to maximise your quality, you will want to get yourself a microphone.

Unlike our camera picks, all of our microphones are approximately equal in price. They are, however, considerably different in execution. Don’t worry; we’ll explain as we go.

Blue Snowball

Our first pick goes to the Blue Snowball, a distinctive looking USB microphone that produces excellent audio quality. The advantages of the Snowball mainly lie in its simplicity of use. You simply plug the mic into your computer, let the drivers automatically install, and you’re good to go. This makes it an ideal pairing with something like the Logitech C930e we mentioned above.

The downside is that you cannot plug a USB mic into something like the Canon T7i. If you want to go portable with the Snowball, you’re going to need to take a laptop with you.

The Snowball is available in a few different variants and supports several pick up patterns. If your YouTube setup never leaves your desk, this is a great microphone to have.

BM-Condenser Microphone plus Preamp

The BM-800 is a little tricky to explain. This microphone is actually an unbranded Chinese product. Sellers in various parts of the world buy this product in bulk, often with their own branding, and resell it. We’re explaining this because if you Google “BM-800 Microphone”, you could get a dozen different brands selling identical looking microphones. It doesn’t make a difference, however; they’re all the same product.

But onto the mic itself. The BM-800 is a condenser microphone that uses an XLR connection. That XLR connection means you will need other hardware to get the mic up and running, but don’t worry, the mic itself typically goes for a third of what the Snowball costs. What’s more, it often comes with extras, like pop shields and shock mounts. Once you have coupled it with a cheap audio interface or microphone preamp, then the price will level out at around the same as the Snowball.

Like the Snowball, you won’t be able to connect this mic to something like a GoPro or T7i, and while it can be portable, it’s not ideal.

This kind of setup is ideal for YouTubers who make music since you can easily swap out your microphone for a different style, or get an audio interface with multiple channels for recording more than one mic at a time.

Rode VideoMic Go

The VideoMic is an on-camera mic. This is a particular kind of microphone that sits on top of your camera, making it ideal for portable setups. Unfortunately, that means it only works with compatible cameras. For reference, only the Canon T7i would be compatible out of the cameras we suggested above.

Still, if you do a lot of filming in different locations and tend to hold your camera rather than set it on a tripod, a microphone like this (on a compatible camera) is the only practical solution. If you do get a camera like the Canon T7i, there really isn’t a compelling reason to go with any other kind of microphone.

Lighting

After your camera and your microphone, lighting is probably the most significant piece of hardware you can buy for your YouTube setup.

If you feel your video quality isn’t what it should be, but you can’t afford to step up your camera game, take a look at your lighting. You’d be surprised at how much difference it makes.

Newer 18-Inch Ring Light

Ring lights, as the name suggests, are ring-shaped lights that are ideal for vloggers, and any situation where the subject is directly facing the camera. They cast a smooth, even light directly in front of them. This ring light comes with a stand and smartphone holder, as well as two different filters.

Newer CN-216

The CN-216 is a compact LED panel light that can be mounted on top of a compatible camera, making it an ideal camera for portable filming setups. Of course, you can still mount it on a stand or tripod. It has an adjustable colour temperature and a removable diffusion screen, and clocks in at a ridiculously low price.

Natural Light

It might sound like a bit of a cop-out, but natural light is one of the best lighting sources for your videos there is, and it’s free! Of course, it puts some limitations on when and where you can film, but if natural light is a practical option for your videos, it is by far the best option for YouTuber’s on a budget.

 

Your Phone

For those of us with a relatively modern smartphone—which is most people these days—our phone represents quite possibly the best quality video and audio for the cheapest cost: free. Well, not free, but unless you bought your phone just to film YouTube videos, it is effectively free.

The cameras in modern phones are something of a marvel, making use of various tricks on the software end to make up for the shortcomings of the hardware, a decent phone will blast most budget options out of the water. And some higher-end phones can even record in 4K at a full 60fps.

Of course, your phone isn’t ideal. You can’t see what you’re shooting unless you use the weaker camera on the front. You have to worry about the available storage space when most higher-end phones don’t accept memory cards anymore. Not to mention you may want to use your phone during filming.

But, for all of its shortcomings, your existing phone may well produce a better quality video than the best cameras you can afford. If you find that to be the case, use your phone for now and save up for a better camera, rather than wasting your money on something you can afford that is not very good.

And the Rest

There are plenty of other things you could be spending your money on when it comes to getting your YouTube setup ready, with varying degrees of importance.

For example – as I noted in my deep dive into soundproofing for youtubers blog –  if the space you are recording in is extremely echoey, it might be worth a little of your hard-earned cash to put it right. Acoustic foam tiles are relatively inexpensive, and you don’t need to plaster the whole room with them to get the desired results.

With a bit of research and a little experimentation, you should be able to make a pack of twenty-four go a long way. Failing that, you could always borrow some thick blankets from the cupboard and put them to good use.

Another area that can sometimes get overlooked is the software department. If you are doing anything more than cutting up pieces of footage, you will need some software to do it in. There are free options available for several of the less complex tasks, such as transitions and titles.

However, Adobe is the industry standard for a reason, and its popularity ensures there will always be plenty of resources to help you get started. Before you panic at the thought of hundreds of pounds worth of software, Adobe has long-since switched to a subscription model, which is not as expensive as you might think.

Conclusions

Finding the best hardware is always a little tricky, as you might have noticed with some of our suggestions.

The Logitech webcam is by far the cheapest, but it lacks portability, which makes it unsuitable for YouTubers who like to film on the go.

Meanwhile, a GoPro is excellent for shooting action shots out and about, but not so great for streaming (though the Hero7 has added some limited streaming capabilities).

Be sure to weigh up all the features of any equipment you might be considering purchasing. Price is important, but even a cheap camera is too expensive if it is not suitable for your specific circumstances.

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DEEP DIVE ARTICLE HOW TO GET MORE VIEWS ON YOUTUBE YOUTUBE

8 Tips to Grow Your YouTube Channel From Zero

Growing a YouTube channel from scratch can be challenging and frustrating.

All that time, planning, recording, and editing content, and when you finally upload it to your channel – tumbleweeds.  You may as well have filmed paint drying for all the good it’s done you!

Fear not.  There are techniques and tips for growing your channel from zero.  Methods you can use to pull in viewers, get more subscribers, and turn those tumbleweeds into roses.

This article gives you eight handy tips you can apply today to grow your YouTube channel, even if you’re starting out from zero.

Let’s get going.

How Much Does it Cost to Start a YouTube Channel? 1

Tip 1 – Make A Start!

To grow a successful YouTube channel from zero means you have to shoot, edit, and upload engaging, entertaining videos regularly.

Thinking about your channel is not the path to success, you need to sit in front of the camera, hit record, and start talking.

You won’t know if you are on the right track for your channel until you’ve uploaded several videos to YouTube, monitored feedback, and made optimised changes to your content.

And don’t worry if you are not that polished at the start.  If you take a look at the earliest videos of now  successful channels, you’ll see how rough and they were when they first began.

8 Tips to Grow Your YouTube Channel From Scratch or Zero

Uploading videos regularly is an absolutely critical step. The crucial factor of feedback comes in several forms; likes and dislikes, comments, and some vital analytics found in your YouTube account.

When you find out what works, you can use the information to make better videos.

But when you start out, resist the temptation to go on a filming frenzy pumping out one video after another. Think about the fable of the tortoise and the hare.

Long term consistency wins over unsustainable short term intensity every time. Slow and steady progress is much better.

Tip 2 – Focus Your Channel on a Single Niche

YouTube channels that jump from topic to topic often confuse people. Viewers are used to channels being about one subject only. So make sure that you make videos that focus around one niche and compliment other content in your channel.

For example, If you like both football and scary videos create a separate channel for each. But if your channel is about beauty, then it’s OK to have videos for nail polish, hair, or skin cleansing, as they all fit under the beauty umbrella.

One of the significant benefits of making your channel about a single niche is the possibility of building viewer feedback loops.  That may sound complicated but actually refers to how YouTube works to keep viewers hooked on the site and watching more videos.

As a user watches content, YouTube shows a list of recommended videos (even autoplay them) to keep viewers hooked. YouTube wants to keep people on the site and is good at guessing what a viewer wants to watch next.

If your channel is all about a single niche, then you can take advantage of this.

When a viewer is watching one of my videos, YouTube determines that the user will probably want to see more videos about YouTube education. So other videos from my channel are displayed for them to watch next.

8 Tips to Grow Your YouTube Channel From Scratch or Zero 1

Tip 3 – Model What Is Already Working

Learn the rules of what makes a video successful and stick to them.  Over time, through trial and error, Youtubers have learned how to best combine content, editing and presenting styles into winning videos. Model your self on a popular channel and don’t get experimental – understand the rules before you break them.

Emulating a successful channel does not mean copying one though. This famous quote illustrates the point nicely.

8 Tips to Grow Your YouTube Channel From Scratch or Zero 2

Find 10 popular channels currently uploading in your chosen niche.  Next, look at the 10 most popular videos for each of those channels and start writing down a list of content ideas. Just because the concepts have already been covered doesn’t mean you can’t take the same idea then do a better job.

Think about how those channels present their content.  Is most of the presenting face on, or maybe they have footage of their hands from overhead?  Perhaps they have lots of computer screen recordings?

Take the best bits of the successful channels, mix them together, then put your own spin on it.

And you must try to make evergreen content.  Evergreen content is videos that will be relevant for a long time in the future.  Your aim should be to build up an extensive back catalogue of content that viewers find useful and compelling, even when they discover your channel a year from now.

If you made a gossip style video about the latest spat between your two favourite singers, you might get a short-term spike in traffic. Still, no-one will care in a year when everyone’s moved on.

Most YouTube videos fall into one of two categories – education and entertainment. If you can manage to do both, even better.

Tip 4 – Work Out How to Keep People Watching for Longer

YouTube makes money when viewers watch adverts. So YouTube strives to keep audiences watching content for as long a possible. It follows then that a significant factor for YouTube in deciding how to rank and recommend videos is by a metric called watch time.

Most people won’t watch a video on YouTube all the way through.  There are too many distractions nowadays, and attention spans are at an all-time low. So YouTube wants viewers to watch videos that are proven to hold their attention.

As a result, they serve up search results and video recommendations from channels with proven good watch times.

There are steps you can take to keep your viewers tuned into your content, and you’ll probably recognise a lot of them from your YouTube browsing.  Everyone uses them because they work and play a big part in keeping viewers engaged.

Keep Intros short and sweet.  Try to keep your intro screen and any welcome message under 20 seconds.

Signpost content in longer videos. If your content is over 10 minutes, think about telling people what’s coming up in the next segment to keep them hooked in.

Tease the most compelling part of your video.  Place the highlight of your video towards the end, but let the viewer know what’s coming and why they must watch the whole video first.

If you can get 50 percent of your viewers to watch over 50 percent of your videos on average, then you will be doing well, and your channel could be on its way to success.

Tip 5 – Create Clickable Titles and Thumbnails

Your channel can only start to grow if people watch your videos. Yet, people will only watch your video if you have a snappy title and a compelling thumbnail for it. Let’s take a more in-depth look at both.

Titles

Your titles need to present a promise to the viewer, usually in one of the three following categories:

Intrigue – Don’t give the game away with your title, use phrases like ‘why was this’ and ‘might surprise you’ to build a compelling reason to click on your video.

8 Tips to Grow Your YouTube Channel From Scratch or Zero 3

FOMO – Fear of missing out.  This usually works best with new information.  This type of title plays on the human desire not to be out of the loop.  Or even better, know something that no-one else knows.

8 Tips to Grow Your YouTube Channel From Scratch or Zero 4

Best Top Worst!  – Another peculiar human trait is our need to rank things.  Everyone does it.  From Tennis players to chocolate cookies, we all have an opinion or would like to find out what is best, top, or worst.

Don’t use a title like ‘My favourite digital cameras’ – ‘The top 10 DSLRs ranked definitively and which one you should buy?’ will outperform it every time.

8 Tips to Grow Your YouTube Channel From Scratch or Zero 5

Thumbnails

Thumbnails need to be amazing too.  It’s the shop window for your video. You’ll usually want to include a picture of yourself on the thumbnail, especially if you are going to be presenting on camera.

Add in text too – some people are more visual and won’t read your title.  A short four or five-word headline that summarises the video helps people narrow down what to watch next. Avoid using fonts with fancy styles and keep your text clean and clear, so it’s easy to read.

Make sure you keep all the elements of your thumbnail big.  Don’t forget that people also watch YouTube on mobile, so your thumbnail will still need to work on smaller smartphone screens.

8 Tips to Grow Your YouTube Channel From Scratch or Zero 6

If you need help in leveling up your thumbnails I have check you my YouTube Thumbnail Pack – 75+ easy edit YouTube Thumbnail designs to help you make eye catching, professional looking thumbnails – improve click through rates and get more views.

Tip 6 – Optimise Your Content Based on Analytics

70% of all the videos watched on YouTube are those recommended by the YouTube algorithm.  YouTube understands what engages viewers and knows what videos to recommend next to keep them on the platform.

One of the significant factors for getting your videos recommended is how long the average viewer watches your content.  Known as Watch Time, it’s an important metric that you should understand and keep a close eye on.

To improve average watch time, use audience retention analysis.  This metric shows second-by-second when your audience stops watching your video.  In the screen-grab below you can see the audience starts at 100% then quickly drops off to just around 55%.

This means that the video in question may have had a lengthy introduction that viewers found annoying, or the content didn’t live up to the promise of the title. So some users navigated away to find another video.

8 Tips to Grow Your YouTube Channel From Scratch or Zero 7

There are lots of ways you can use analytics to improve and grow your channel. Read this post to find out more about using analytics for channel growth.

Tip 7 – Build Traffic Funnels

When you start getting traffic to your channel, there are several ways to hold on to that traffic and funnel it to your other videos. It’s better than letting to go to other channels, right?

Create a series.

If you have a content idea that is relatively broad, think about creating a series of videos for the topic, like in the example below for a Microsoft Teams software tutorial.

8 Tips to Grow Your YouTube Channel From Scratch or Zero 9

As long as you don’t give away the lion’s share of the information in the first video, viewers are more likely to watch the next in the series. Set up teasers about what’s in the following video in the series to help funnel the traffic over.

Make sure that the content in a series of videos works on a standalone basis as well.  Briefly recap the lessons from previous videos before you begin the content of the next in the series, so viewers know the context.

Create Playlists

If you don’t have content that works as a series but has a similar theme, consider building a channel playlist. 5-Minute Crafts’s channel has thematic playlists containing hundreds of videos with hours of watch time in each.

8 Tips to Grow Your YouTube Channel From Scratch or Zero 10

When a view hits play all, Youtube shows one video after another on the playlist – ensuring good watch time (and ad revenue).

Use Cards

Cards are the term given to grey boxes you can set to display in the corner of your video.

8 Tips to Grow Your YouTube Channel From Scratch or Zero 11

You can use cards to link to other channels, websites, or polls.  But, perhaps the best use for them is to link to your other video content.

If you found a place in one of your videos that your audience retention analytics showed some viewers dropping out.  Set up a card just before this point to funnel the traffic to other complementary content on your channel.

Find out more about adding cards in YouTube Studio.

Use End screens

When a viewer gets to the end of your video, use an end screen to promote another video. It’s best if you only suggest one video.  Having a single call-to-action is better than adding multiple links to lots of your videos and hoping the viewer clicks one.

This tip works even better if you plan ahead. Trail the video you will link to in the end screen of the video you’ll place it on.

Find out how to add and end screen.

Tip 8 – Don’t Give Up!

It takes time and dedication to build up a successful YouTube channel.  And when you get started, it can seem like you are trying really hard for little reward. YouTube is peppered with channels where the creator burned out and stopped after only uploading six or seven videos.

There is a concept for entrepreneurs that is illustrated by the ‘S’ curve.  When a new venture begins, frustration builds as little happens. And it’s not uncommon to think that you’ve wasted your time and everything is destined to fail.

But there comes the point, known as the inflection point, where things start clicking into place. Suddenly the venture rockets away, and it becomes successful.

8 Tips to Grow Your YouTube Channel From Scratch or Zero 12 Image Source: innospective.net

Most people quit before the inflection point, which is why it pays to stick with your plan and keep on working hard. Commit yourself to upload at least a video per week for six months.

Monitor feedback from the comments and analytics and use it to improve and make better videos.  Don’t give up!

Conclusion

Growing a successful YouTube channel isn’t easy – but it’s not impossible either.  Those that are successful know that achieving success takes time.  It requires careful planning, listening to feedback, and interpreting channel analytics.

There are tried and tested techniques you can use to attract and keep viewers watching your videos.

Experiment using the tips above in your videos, and see what difference it can make to your channel. There are tens of thousands of people making a living from YouTube. Will you become one of them?