How to Become a YouTube Guru and Fast Track Your Online Success
Apart from the odd viral video like ‘charlie bit my finger’ and Justin Beiber finding his international fame – actual solid money making success stories on You Tube have been hard to pinpoint.
But that's all changing...
Here at Canonbury we’ve been studying You Tube for some time. As you may know, Sara Baugh has covered using YouTube Channels in both Internet Income Detective and the indepth ‘ YouTube Profit Programme’.
But something else very exciting has been happening. And that’s why today I want to show you why ‘how to’ videos are suddenly turning YouTube into a serious business.
Started almost by accident in 2007 the pixiwoo YouTube channel which shows viewers how to put on make up has notched up over 81 million views and boasts 465,121 subscribers, with a 1,000 new subscribers joining every day.
The creator, a UK based make up artist called Sam Chapman put a video up on You Tube to show a friend how to create a particular make up look (the smoky eye if you are interested!). She quickly realised people other than her friends were viewing it and lots of interest and comments appeared so she posted another and then another...
Soon after her sister Nicola, also a make up artist, joined her in creating these videos and they’ve reached the dizzying heights that I’ve outlined today. They generate ad revenue via the YouTube partnership programme (each video they post gets hundreds of thousands of views) and are included in the presitigious StyleHaul portfolio which is sure to generate even more revenue.
They have also optimised their money making potential by running make up classes (all 2012 classes are already booked up) and creating a line of make up brushes which are sold in Boots and online globally. Thanks to their popularity they also now have a regular column in The Mirror newspaper.
And judging by their disclaimer I think it is safe to assume they also get sponsorship from reviewing products online and I can’t even imagine the amount of free products they get swamped with from eager brands desperate to get their product into a Pixiwoo video.
So What Can You Learn From Their Success?
First off, I urge you to watch one of their videos (although HD now the earlier ones were very low-fi). They are just ordinary women. They talk to the camera as if talking to a friend while they demonstrate their make up techniques. They have an avid fan base, just check out the comments on each of their videos, and they have quickly grabbed their success and developed it.
If you look on their channel home page you will see they have created a separate channel – which, while not quite as successful as their main channel is still generating 5 million views and has over 130,000 subscribers.
You'll also notice that their brothers, mother and even their brother’s girlfriend have created channels which are generating healthy views and subscribers.
When the whole family is in on the act you know this is a business model worth taking notice of!
They’ve also got Twitter and Facebook accounts to generate extra interest.
NB: If all this sounds daunting please DON’T be put off. Remember you can take this a step at a time.
So Could This Work For You?
Think about any special skills you have - things that people ask your advice on. If you are a tradesman – plumber, electrician, plasterer there are so many things you could do.
For instance – type in ‘how to wire a light switch’ and you’ll find videos that have generated 640,000 views. Be encouraged rather than put off that there are already videos up there…there is always a desire for more, newer ones.
Do you have accounts skills? Teach people how to set up spreadsheets and set formulas.
Perhaps you have a hobby that could translate well; videos with golfing techniques, gardening tips and exercise routines all generate lots of hits.
And if you’ve just succeeded in setting up a website, banner ad or something similar why not record a video showing others how you did it.
There are men & women’s style blogs, people just doing weekly videos on their life and style. Obviously these are harder to get right. You have to be confident and have a very engaging style but if you do then these can be extremely successful.
I could go on for pages about the subject areas that you could cover… pretty much anything is probably worth trying!
But the key is trying to find an area you can specialise in and produce videos regularly over time. Weekly or more is optimum.
How Do You Get Started?
I suggest you spend an evening watching some of the successful YouTube videos (look for ones with lots of hits – hundreds of thousands).
What makes them different/better than the ones that only get a couple of views? And then just get started. Don’t worry about making everything too perfect. It really doesn’t need to be.
There are a mixture of different types of videos: head on videos or demonstrations where a camera is used to record the tutorial. There are screen based ones where you follow the actions on a screen. These can be recorded using Camtasia which is charged at £230.50 plus VAT for PC’s or £76.50 plus VAT for Macs.
Our inhouse expert is NOT impressed with the Mac version though and if at all possible suggests you use the PC version. But even better, from the same company, you can get the free Jing software (though videos using this are restricted to 5 mins) - this may be plenty for getting you started (free is always good!).
Word of Warning – be ready for some really nasty comments
No matter how innocuous, normal, well thought out your video is you will get some clever so and so leaving something nasty about you or your video. Do not take it personally. Delete the comment if you want. Or just answer it politely and move on. You will often find other viewers leaping to your defence if it’s an unwarranted comment. We would have closed down our business years ago if we had a fragile ego. People are jealous of you for doing something… don’t take it personally (though I know it’s hard not to).
The Best Way to Attract Views
These YouTube statistics from SEO White Hats make interesting reading:
• 50-70% of uploaded videos get between 25 and 100 views
• 20% or less of uploaded videos get 5000 views
• 10% or less of uploaded videos get 1,500 views
• 3% of uploaded videos get 25,000 views.
• Only 1% of the uploaded videos get 500,000 views.
It’s not just luck that separates that top 1% from the 50-70%. A lot of people are just lazy and think they can load a video and people will magically flock to it. O.K. it can happen like that in very rare circumstances but we don’t want to leave it to chance. By taking a few simple steps you can give yourself the advantage.
Experts generally believe that it’s the metadata (text around your video) that is vital to attracting views.
Remember that people use YouTube in the same way that they use Google… they search for things. So your metadata is vital to getting you views.
Your Title – keep this under 35 characters otherwise you’ll find your title gets cut off in Google or other searches. Try and make it appropriate, interesting and catchy. Always use descriptive words but try not to slip into generics. If you can be specific to make it stand out from other similar videos do that. Try to include the word ‘video’ in your title. Many people will get to your video via Google. And the word video makes them far more likely to click through than if they think it’s just an article or webpage.
Your Description Box – so many people don’t bother to fill this out which is a big mistake as it really can help boost your likelihood of being found in searches. You can use many more words but I recommend you don’t go longer that 2-3 paragraphs.
It’s vital to repeat the main keywords from your title and then just try and explain the rest of your video. Do not try and trick people into watching your video. People think they are clever doing this by promising things that aren’t even in their video – but you are shooting yourself in the foot.
Tags and Keywords – you must fill this in to boost your chances. Get greedy, think of as many keywords as you can that relate to your videos. And you can use descriptions too as well as one off keywords. However don’t try and trick YouTube. Putting Justin Beiber in your keyword box (in an attempt to capture some of the millions of viewers that type in that word) when you are uploading a video about grouting will not only annoy viewers, it may also result in your video being removed.
YouTube also provide a very helpful tool: just type in any keywords you’ve come up with or even your URL and YouTube will come up with suggestions based on what people have searched for.
And don’t be ashamed to cheat a little! Look at the tags/keywords the most successful similar videos are using and use them. Obviously they must be relevant to your own video too.
Now it’s Time to Upload Your YouTube Video
There are some steps that YouTube describe as optional but we’ve discovered that the more you fill in the better your chances of attracting viewers.
1. Use good keywords in your file name – according to some experts this can influence the ads that get placed on your video.
2. Get your Category Right – take time deciding on the best category to upload your video to. Check out similar ones to see what they’ve chosen. If you have the choice of a few always go for the least competitive. You can judge this by checking which need the fewest views to get to the front page.
3. Choosing Your Thumbnail – when you are a YouTube partner (hopefully not too far in the future) you get to upload your own chosen thumbnail but when you are just starting out you get the choice of three. Remember this may well be the thing that prompts someone to click on your video so choose carefully.
4. Set the location and date of your video – the more information you offer the better (such as this) the better
As mentioned I’ve posted some of the most user friendly videos that show you how to actually get your video on YouTube. These are posted on the resource page.
So your lovely new video is uploaded. But don’t just pat yourself on the back and think that people will come flocking to it. Put a bit more effort in to give yourself the edge over the others out there.
Share Your Video
Don’t rely on YouTube to get you found. Put your video on every other resource you have. Facebook, Twitter, Blogs and your website (obviously not everyone will have these but if you do take full advantage).
And rather than put a standard link such as: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qb8RYV0K06s always embed your video. People tend to prefer to watch on your site rather than have to click away.
These really help boost your rankings so even if you’ve embedded your video in a blog/website do also put in a textlink (also known as backlinks). It’s important to not just use a directly pasted link such as http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1C6EBxGAKr0&feature=mfu_in_order&list=UL Instead use words to describe what they will be watching: e.g. my video to show you how to research on ebay pulse.
Use Annotations to Get to The Top!
They are your free helper to getting you more views. Use them to encourage your viewers to share, make favourite, comment, like, subscribe and watch your other stuff. All these things help towards increasing your search rankings.
But test and use sparingly… don’t overload the viewer with options (2 per video is probably optimum). And also remember not to wait till the end of the video. People often don’t watch the whole thing so your annotation at the end is wasted. Instead place them strategically throughout.
Remember to test everything, the style and fonts of your annotations and where you place them. See which one garners the highest response.
Get your link out there! Post comments on similar videos and have a link to your video. Make sure you are always posting relevant and helpful comments otherwise you risk upsetting the video owners and they will just delete your comment.
Engage for success – spend time responding to comments. As I mentioned before there will no doubt be some stupid, hurtful comments (however perfect your video)…however hopefully there will also be nice or constructive ones. If there are make sure you reply and continue to do so when you can so that your reply section remains actives (all helps with your rankings!)
People out there are really getting YouTube to make money for them. Through the YouTube Partnership programme and by including YouTube as a way to build on other aspects of their business and generate new customers. There are no barriers to entry and as long as you have a video camera you can do it too. Please do let us know how you get on.
Credit: check out http://www.joshrimer.com/ for some really great YouTube marketing tactics. We found his articles and studies extremely useful while researching YouTube. He has a very certain ‘style’ (you’ll see what I mean) but I hope that doesn’t bother you. It didn’t bother us.
Also Sara’s YouTube Profit Channel Programme
Heloise has been a marketer in the publishing business for nearly 20 years. Before setting up Canonbury Publishing Ltd with her husband Nick Laight, Heloise was Marketing Director and then Head of Publishing at a multi-national information publisher.
by Heloise Laight
Business Opportunities Expert
Heloise has been a marketer in the publishing business for nearly 20 years. Before setting up Canonbury Publishing Ltd with her husband Nick Laight, Heloise was Marketing Director and then Head of Publishing at a multi-national information publisher.At Canonbury she works with Nick to ensure their thousands of readers enjoy money making reviews, blueprints and scam alerts. She also contributes to the newsletters, e-letters and website. You can sign up Canonbury’s free e-letter - What Really Makes Money here: