At the same time, YouTube is moving to develop subscription services. In November, YouTube announced a music-subscription service, similar to Spotify, that will offer ad-free listening and other tools for $10 a month. YouTube executives have discussed another subscription offering for non-music content, according to one industry official, which would be in addition to its existing ad-supported service.
“Another tip to improve the ranking of your video is to embed it directly on your blog, hopefully in an article that follows best practices for SEO and has relation with the theme. Embedding articles in your company’s blog will give them more meat and value.” – Nhorman Dario Rodriguez Rocha, Top 5 YouTube Marketing Tips for Your Business, Duo Executives
You don’t need expensive hardware to get going. Content is far more important than having 4K or 360-degree video. Great quality helps, but today’s smartphones are more than good enough to start with. That said, good lighting is very important: natural is great, if you can be outdoors, or near a window, or pick up some lighting kits that start at a couple of hundred dollars. Clear audio is critical, too; you can buy a highly-rated clip-on lavalier (“lav”) mic starting at only $23.
On March 31, 2010, YouTube launched a new design with the aim of simplifying the interface and increasing the time users spend on the site. Google product manager Shiva Rajaraman commented: "We really felt like we needed to step back and remove the clutter." In May 2010, it was reported that YouTube was serving more than two billion videos a day, which was "nearly double the prime-time audience of all three major US television networks combined". In May 2011, YouTube reported on the company blog that the site was receiving more than three billion views per day. In January 2012, YouTube stated that the figure had increased to four billion videos streamed per day.
There has been an overhaul in ad content lately, due to controversy when ads were being shown on videos that contained extremism, hate speech, and other content businesses did not want to be associated with. Now, channels of arms dealers, political commentators, and even video games have seen fewer ads on their content. This only really affects those who are trying to monetize their YouTube by placing ads on their site, not so much for those running the ads.
In June 2009, BusinessWeek reported that, according to San Francisco-based IT consulting company RampRate, YouTube was far closer to profitability than previous reports, including the April 2009, projection by investment bank Credit Suisse estimating YouTube would lose as much as $470 million in 2009. RampRate's report pegged that number at no more than $174 million.
So far, though, this has all proved to be mostly idle speculation. Analysts say Google has not been bidding aggressively to win streaming rights. It's not clear whether YouTube, long the top video site overall in unique visitors, aims to be the No. 1 aggregator of all video, says Joel Espelien, an analyst at the Diffusion Group, a video-focused research firm.
“But don’t be fooled into thinking that improving your watch time is as simple as creating longer videos. A 30-second video that people watch from beginning to end will rank better than a 10-minute video that only gets watched for a couple of minutes. In the end, the best way to boost watch time is to produce videos you audience wants to watch.” – Ric Mazereeuw, How Does the youTube Algorithm Work? A Guide to Getting More Views, Hootsuite; Twitter: @hootsuite
But sponsorships are where the big bucks are made, and where intermediaries like MediaKix and other agencies come in. This is the major leagues: Most brands aren’t interested in YouTube channels with fewer than 200,000 to 300,000 subscribers or average views of less than 10,000 to 20,000 per video, says Asano. The bar is also high because videos cost more to make, and require tricky negotiations —the sponsor will want to know where their product will be featured, for how long, and so forth. “When we’re connecting top brands with top influencers on YouTube, you’re talking a minimum budget of $50,000 to $100,000, and it just goes up from there,” Asano explains. “Some of the biggest YouTube influencers get paid $100,000 to 200,000 for a single video. And then those videos get millions of views. That’s why there’s a lot of money in the space.”
How does a video streaming service with one billion active users per month and $4 billion in revenue not turn a profit? Ask YouTube, which couldn't break free from breaking even in 2014, according to a new report. Sources tell the Wall Street Journal that Google's video unit posted $4 billion in revenue last year, up from $3 billion in 2013, and that while the service accounted for 6 percent of Google's overall sales, it contributed nothing to earnings.
"Commodified Internet spaces are always profit-oriented, but the goods they provide are not necessarily exchange-value and market-oriented; in some cases (such as Google, Yahoo, MySpace, YouTube, Netscape), free goods or platforms are provided as gifts in order to drive up the number of users so that high advertisement rates can be charged in order to achieve profit.":181
You’ve determined your goal, created a storyboard, and decided on the ideal video length needed to deliver your message. Now it’s time to find your filming locations. In the film industry, this step is called location scouting, and like every other step in this process, it’s an important part of creating a compelling video. To get started, take a look at your storyboard, and create a list of the different locations each scene requires. Depending on your video concept, you may only need one location or you may need a new location for each scene.
User entitlement -- A key to the plan of scaling up and eventually figuring out how to make money is free services for users. The minute you charge people, most walk off, particularly when they've been trained to assume that services should be free. YouTube has clearly told people that they should expect free video streaming, even if it has considered an ad-free paid subscription service. Getting consumers to change their behavior after they've become used to not paying is next to impossible.
YouTube already offers advertisers the opportunity to withdraw from advertising on some videos – such as LGBTQ content or discussions of mental health – if it doesn’t sit well alongside a brand’s message. It was revealed last year that this can sometimes then lead to content being demonetised. In other words, the creator does not receive a share of ad revenue for that video.
If your end goal is to actually make money from videos, there’s a far better option than simply relying on your measly allocation of ad revenue. Instead, create a YouTube channel and build an audience. The primary goal is to engage this audience and build a brand name. Then, once you've established a reputation, begin driving traffic to your own landing pages where you can up-sell viewers with premium video content.
Keywords are the other important thing. You need to make sure you put those keywords in your title so it attracts the right audience. Keywords like social media marketing, search engine optimization, conversion rate optimization, ROI, and blogging are all keywords you’ll find me using. If you know your niche, you’ll know what keywords you need to use.
I recommend that your account picture (which you set through your Google account) is some sort of brand logo. If you’re a one-person business, it can be a professional headshot of you. Ideally, it should match your profile pictures on other social media accounts for instant brand recognition. This works both ways; if ones of your followers from another site comes across your YouTube, you want them to recognize you so they’re more likely to watch. And, vice versa, if a viewer Googles you, you want them to be sure that the Facebook profile they’re clicking on is actually you. To change your channel art, just click on it when editing your profile.
When a video goes viral, YouTube is typically the driving force. As of 2011, YouTube is the third-ranked website globally, with hundreds of millions of users. While you might be using YouTube only to look up video of cute cats and funny pranks, other users actually generate a profit stream ranging from pocket money to money in the bank using their personal YouTube channels and the videos they create. If you want in on the YouTube gravy train, the first thing you should know is that it's not as easy as it may look.
Unlike other social networking platforms, YouTube exclusively hosts video content. If you’re only creating a YouTube channel to upload one video and have no intention of maintaining the platform, you might want to reconsider. You’ll need to set aside plenty of time to plan, film, edit, market, and analyze content on a consistent basis. You’ll need to define your brand’s goals and plan for how video specifically can help you achieve these. However, if you devote an appropriate amount of time and energy into the platform, you’ll be able to create engaging, shareable content for your growing audience.