Have you every watched a video on YouTube and had to wait for the advertisement to finish before you can see the actual video? Have you seen the image and text advertising banners that sometimes show up on top of a video while you’re watching? Those are paid advertisements that you can make money from if someone clicks them while watching your video.
In 2006 Google purchased YouTube and as a result Google Adsense is the integrated ad network for all YouTube videos. Signing up for an Adsense account is fast and easy. Once you sign up, you simply go into your YouTube publisher settings and integrate your Adsense account. There are some limited options that allow you to control advertisements on individual videos.
But before you start making money, you need to build a successful YouTube channel.
Going Viral vs Regular Content
Everyone wants to make that one viral video that gets 30 million views. That would be nice, but the reality is, your chances of intentionally producing a viral video are slim. Most people who produce a video that goes viral are not doing it intentionally. Take the Gangnam Style music video by Psy, which has over 2 billion views (Yes, with a “B”). I don’t think they ever anticipated such a huge break out of their video. In fact, if you compare their music videos to those of other Korean and Japanese pop groups, you’ll realize there’s nothing especially unique about it. But somehow the video caught fire with an the American audience and blew up. In most cases going viral is out of your hands. All you can do is produce quality content and hope for the best.
On the other hand, creating good videos on a regular basis can help you beat the odds. Take the example of Jimmy Fallon’s YouTube Channel. Obviously he has the benefit of being on television, so why have YouTube videos at all? The regular production of content (1,892 videos when this was written) compensates for not having insanely viral videos.
Mix Things Up
Not every video is going to appeal to each viewer, so you need to mix things up. Stay on track and be true to your overall theme/niche, but give your videos enough variation and creativity to keep new people coming in and older subscribers coming back to check out new content.
Making Your Channel Look Professional
If you want to appear professional, you need to…uh…appear professional. Here are a couple tips for making sure your YouTube channel is up to snuff:
- Choose an easy to remember channel name
- Provide a thoughtful channel description
- Create a customized channel icon and channel art
Here are some tips directly from YouTube staffers on how to optimize your YouTube videos and channel.
Promoting Videos on Social Media Networks
Simply having a YouTube channel may not be enough to get you the exposure you need. One of the fastest ways to get the word out about new videos on your channel is with social media. By building a following across the different social media networks, you can leverage the work of your followers. You tell them, they tell their friends, etc. Social media is arguably the easiest way for a video to go viral. By sharing, liking and re-tweeting, your content can quickly get in front of a large audience.
Collaborate with Other Famous YouTube Channels
A great way to gain more exposure is to join forces with existing YouTube producers. If you have an idea for a video that fits nicely into the niche or content area of another YouTube personality, see if they would be interested in a collaborative video. Produce a video for his/her audience and plug your YouTube channel. It’s a great way to build a following from an already engaged audience!
Just like any opportunity, building a successful YouTube channel takes work, creativity and commitment. If you stick to it and do the hard work, it will pay off.