YouTube Strategy for Nonprofits
Learn the 10 fundamentals of creating a successful marketing strategy with YouTube. Watch this free expert webcast now to learn how to use Youtube for your organization’s mission.
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YouTube Strategy for Nonprofits TranscriptPrint Transcript
Good afternoon, and good morning to some of you. I’d like to thank the nearly 300 nonprofit staff who have joined us today. My name is Arlene Berkowitz, and I’m joined by Debbie Scarlett Foster, a colleague in the training department. Today’s Read More
Good afternoon, and good morning to some of you. I’d like to thank the nearly 300 nonprofit staff who have joined us today. My name is Arlene Berkowitz, and I’m joined by Debbie Scarlett Foster, a colleague in the training department. Today’s program, which is titled YouTube strategy for nonprofits will feature Ben RELLIS. at YouTube, Ben RELLIS is responsible for empowering content creators across the platform to build their audience and develop their creative strategy. While at YouTube, Ben has worked with a number of nonprofit organizations including Donors Choose IAVA, and Comedy Central’s in light of too many laughs fundraiser. Prior to joining YouTube, Ben was vice president of programming at next new networks. Ben began working in online video when he created the comedy network Barely Political in 2007, which is over 2 billion views today, the channel launched in 2007. With Ben’s video, I’ve got a crush on Obama, which was named one of the top 10 memes of the decade, and has been viewed over 100 million times. Ben received his MBA from the Wharton School of Business and lives outside of Philadelphia with his wife and three children. Today’s session is being recorded, and will be available on our blog and knowledge base. And you’ll be getting an email early next week to let you know when it’s available.
Hey, everyone, thanks so much for having me, I am going to assume at this point, you can see my deck and myself. Awesome. So I actually started on YouTube in 2007, I was working at an ad agency. And the first video I did was actually video called I got a crush on Obama. And when that video came out, I was really fascinated by how many people had reached, how quickly it was spread. And I got fascinated by what you could accomplish on YouTube for reaching a lot of people with smaller budgets. And you could do with traditional media, I spent 2007 through 2011 with a company called next new networks, where we did original online video programming, and mostly entertainment categories, although we did do a lot of nonprofit work as well. And then in 2011, next new networks was actually acquired by YouTube. So I was overseeing programming next new networks. And then now that I’m at YouTube full time for three years, my role overseeing creative strategy is really focused on how do we understand what kind of YouTube content works, why it works, and then how we can get that information in the hands of partners. So what we’ll be covering for the next 30, or 40 minutes, is really focused on that. What are the fundamental principles of how you can reach as many people as possible with your online content on YouTube, and make your nonprofit campaigns really successful learning from the techniques of YouTube’s top creators. So in terms of how we built this presentation really quickly, now that we are internal at YouTube, we started by talking to YouTube’s top channels, and really understanding what did they do to build audiences on the platform. And this involves both observing their behavior, and also a lot of one on one interviews with them to understand the most effective techniques to build audience on YouTube. And after speaking with them, we realized that there were some specific things that kept coming up over and over. So when you look at the nonprofit category in general, we have seen a lot of channels that are really successful, as you can see here, 24,000 nonprofit partners who are using the platform. And Sesame Street there, as an example, has now crossed the 1 billion view mark one of only about 35 channels to do that. And more and more we’re seeing these big videos come from nonprofit organizations that have been able to cross over the just nonprofit world or just their target audience and become much bigger than that and actually shared universally across YouTube. So we’ll be talking about that a lot. How do you have these viral hit videos? And then we’ll also be talking about what are some of the things that YouTube creators do to build a more sustainable audience. And I mentioned that in part because, you know, as we came to these 10 fundamental areas, and these are the 10 areas that we feel like are most important to understand, and most importantly, utilize as a channel on YouTube. The real goal here is around building both big hit videos, but also a loyal audience that you can start to build on YouTube through subscriptions so that every time you have a video, you don’t have to rely on that video being viral to be successful. The 10 areas that we will cover are shareability How do you get people to spread your video through their social media and email Word of Mouth conversation, how can you talk directly to your audience? interactivity? What are ways that they can actually impact the content? Consistency? What are the things you can do in your videos that audiences will come to rely on? Targeting? You’re talking really about? Who do you want see your video? And how can your videos appeal to them? Sustainability in terms of having a regular stream of content that you can continue to produce? discoverability? And not just in terms of optimization, but really, in terms of what are the kinds of subject matters that people will search for over the long term? Accessibility? How can you get people to watch a video in the first few seconds to really connect with it? Collaboration? And in this case, specifically, how can you collaborate with other top YouTube channels to build audience? And finally, inspiration? What are the actual inspirations for your videos? And how can you make them really authentic to your nonprofit brand? Very briefly, my backstory, when I started the channel, I built the team on YouTube really off of the success of that one Obama Girl video, that video probably has some things in common in the way that nonprofits sometimes have big successful videos. Our success was really driven by online blogs and social sites, as well as the mainstream news. And that first video that we did, for those of you that haven’t seen it, it was a girl who was singing about her obsession with Barack Obama crossover because of that, more than anything else. And so we were being talked about a lot, because every time we did something about the campaign, the blog that we’re covering, the campaign had a reason to pull in our video. But we actually found that those viral videos were not the real success of the channel, the Barely Political channel today has about 2 billion total views. And about 1 billion of those come from a series called The Key of Awesome, which really taps more into these fundamental areas of building a regular audience. In terms of a consistent series, we interact with our audience more. And we’ve really figured out a way to converse with our audience so that they feel like they’re a part of this channel. And we’re actually not as reliant on social media sites anymore. So jumping into that, and jumping into the first of our 10 areas, the first one is shareability. And when we talk about shareability, this can be used somewhat interchangeably with the way people talk about videos going viral. But with each of these areas, what we want to do as a channel and ask ourselves a fundamental question that we feel like we can answer with our content. So in the in the area of shareability, what I’m asking you guys to consider is, every time you make a video, will videos share the will viewers share these videos. And it’s important not to think of these 10 things is specific rules you have to do with every single video, but rather questions you should ask knowing that you need to play into some of these different areas. So let’s start with shareability. And will people share videos. And let’s start with the most successful nonprofit example of 2014. Now, I should mention upfront, I’m not going to play all of these videos in the interest of time, but I will circulate a list of all the videos so you can watch them. And this video specifically most shocking second, the day video has over 30 million views right now. It’s actually one of the 20 most viewed videos of the year, I’m guessing a lot of you have seen it. And when you talk about why this video spread, aside from being really powerful, compelling content, there’s also some specific things they did well, the video itself takes place over the course of about 90 seconds. And it starts with a girl who is celebrating a birthday. And this shows one second of the day, throughout the day, where essentially, that one second by the end of the year starts to show her in a world which has kind of fallen apart. And it’s a really moving and powerful video. But aside from the video demonstrating something really serious, which is you know the Save the Children UK campaign, it also does some things well as content which makes it shareable. One thing it does well, is the title itself. So the fact that the video is called most shocking second the day, it’s something that people will click on. And when you think about YouTube, one thing to consider is that every time you put up a video, when people find it, it’s surrounded by other video content, or at least in most cases, so if they see it in a Twitter feed or a Facebook feed or in Google search results, that video is surrounded by a lot of other videos. And so they’re making a decision on which thing to click on. The other thing I think this video does really well is it’s a really relatable situation and it makes something which is relatable, more accessible, I think to a wide audience. So we have a little girl that we can all identify with in the beginning doing moments that we’re all very familiar with. But on the other hand, we also have a situation at the end, which it really resonates with people in terms of the cause. So when you look at kind of the way A top creator might do this. These are Retton links. So they’re two of YouTube’s most successful creators, they have millions of subscribers, they’re coming up on a billion total views. And they say, when people share a video, they ask themselves, what 10 words will people actually use to describe that video to their friends. So a video like shocking one second a day, that’s something that both the title and the way you describe it to someone else is really compelling. And when you look at the big hits of the year on YouTube, very often this rule applies that if you can describe that video in 10 words or less, and somebody wants to watch it, that’s a good sign that that video has a life beyond just the initial viewers. And it also is an indication again, that every time a video is shared, there’s kind of two parts to that video spreading one, how good is the content, and two, after it’s shared, how likely is someone to actually click on the link.
So shareability a few specific topics. One is definitely to be relatable. I think this is more true than ever. When I started on YouTube in 2007, a lot of our audience came from blogs. But now that there’s so many social media sites, and people spend so much time on Facebook of all ages, we found that relatability is really important that when people identify with videos and share it, that can be the starting point to a big video. The second thing is being topical very often on YouTube, there’s ways to capitalize on things that are happening and quickly respond. And then the third is to provide some kind of value. And a lot of times we see nonprofits do well, because the information that they have actually provides value to the viewer and something that they can implement. So the second fundamental area here to understand is around conversation, and we talked about conversation, we’re really talking about conversing directly with the viewer in some way within your content. And when you look at YouTube, the question that you’re asking is, is there an element that speaks directly to the audience? And if there’s not, when you’re thinking about video series ideas, or even an individual video, is there a way to work that into it? Interestingly, when you look at YouTube’s top scripted series, you find that even scripted content on YouTube very often breaks this wall so lonely girl 15 is one of the most iconic series on YouTube. It’s back in 2007 covers of magazines Jay Leno Show that started with her addressing the camera, even though the rest of the series was scripted, and the guild, which is a series from Felicia Day, which has millions of viewers all about the video game series that the show is about also started in the first few seconds of chair addressing the audience. And same thing with the scripted Lizzie Bennet Diaries series, which recently won an Emmy. And she really created a whole world around her character, but also Converse directly with the audience. Another thing we see sometimes is that in content, even if it’s scripted content, like conversations with my two year old to the comedy series that I highly recommend, in addition to the video content, which are two minutes short films, they also do these short videos quick thank yous and ways to dress the audience directly that makes the audience feel like they know the channel, even if that channel is doing content separate from the main content, just to be able to create that conversation with their audience. So we can play an example here from a nonprofit organization. This is from Mama hope. And the video that they posted was African men Hollywood stereotype. So let’s watch about 30 seconds of that.
I am an African man, I am an African man, I am an African man, I am an African man. But do you know who we are?
If you’ve only sinners in old movies, this is what you may think of us.
We should draw machine guns from trucks.
We shoot machine guns from birth. When you run out of bullets, we should look at lunches.
We hit my so that video and I recommend you watch the whole thing if you have a chance, which was created by Joe sabia for Mama hope I’ve done a lot of things well, in terms of the way that it kind of flips a topic on its head of it and really changes the way you might think about African men. But one of the things that the video definitely does well is it starts with a conversation with the audience. And it figures out a way to show these people in a different way. Because they’re all looking right in the camera. They’re all being very authentic. YouTube has always been a very social platform. And it’s something really important to understand is that very often the people who are watching have a certain expectation that because YouTube is a social platform, the channel itself will figure out some way to converse with them. And we find that very often people subscribe to People more than organizations. And then if you can figure out a way to give your organization some kind of voice talking directly the audience that I can really help. Okay, so the third excuse me, the third principle here is around interactivity. And interactivity here we’re really referring to, are there ways to pull the audience into the content and give them some kind of voice in it. And the example here on the interactivity and giving the actual involvement is on Epic Rap battle. So Epic Rap Battles is one of YouTube’s top series. As you can see, here, nearly 10 million subscribers, they do often 20 20 million views a video. And the videos are great. They basically have different characters from history, rap battle against each other. But one thing they do, which is always been accused of a serious success is a little bit more subtle. At the end of every video they do, they actually ask their audience who won the rap battle, who’s next you decide. And then they actually show that the video that they made, came from a view that the viewer suggestion. So in this case, it’s Skrillex rap battling against Mozart, though, actually acknowledged that that came from their audience. And so there’s a few ways that people can participate with this video, they can vote on who won who’s next. And then it says you decide. So they know that they actually leave a rap battle suggestion in the comments that they’re going to be considered by the rap battle production. So in this case, they actually get about 15 times as many views and comments as other channels in their category. And the reason for all that activity is because they have the ability to actually give ownership of the content to the viewer. So we can look at a nonprofit that does this as well, Sesame Street, as I said, Sesame Street actually just recently reached a billion total views as a channel. And when you look at some of the content that they do, they do pull in the viewer. Here’s an example of counting the US and YouTube, where they actually asked for video from their fans, and those videos from their fans made their way into Sesame Street videos. So as a viewer, you feel like this channel really is incorporating your feedback, and that the viewers themselves are really a part of it. Unfortunately, YouTube enables you to do this in a way that not all media does. The fourth area is around consistency. And there’s a lot of different ways to look at consistency on YouTube. But the question you’re asking yourselves, are there strong recurring elements to the idea, one thing that we’ve definitely learned on YouTube is that if you have a channel, it’s really scattershot with the type of content on it, it can be really tough to retain the subscribers. And so sometimes with brands and with nonprofits, as well, you see such a mishmash of content on the channel, that it’s tough to keep people watching. And so if you have a video, which is first the CEO of the organization speaking, and then a really strong, compelling entertainment video to bring in people, and then the next video is one of your commercials. And then the next video is something completely different. The problem you start to run into is that subscribers won’t keep watching. And maybe even more important, somebody who watches one video and wants to see what else is on the channel doesn’t stick with the channel, the algorithm on YouTube rewards more than any other factor, total watch time from a viewer. So if you have a channel, which has a video, and that video is four minutes long, and that viewer watches that four minute video in its entirety. In the next video they watched they don’t like and they go back to whatever they were doing that total watch time is about four minutes. But if you have a video that’s part of a series, and it’s consistent, and then the next video they watched it like and the next video they like and they actually have a 20 minute session on YouTube, YouTube really reward that and the algorithm so that in search results in related videos and suggestions that we’re going to recommend the kinds of channels that have total watch time that’s really high from our viewers. So that’s why it’s really important to think about are there series ideas we can do that recur over and over again, so that when somebody likes a video, they recognize there’s more in that series so we can look at some examples of those. The first one is bad lip reading here so we can watch the few a few seconds of this this is actually of course not a nonprofit series, but I’ll play this and then talk about what they do well
hey, I can spin around. Don’t hoard cat food. Star Wars typhoon.
You could joke all night but no no kung fu no more cartoons no more kung fu No, no come through. Because just the quest is birthday cake.
That’s the part a pretty hilarious punch the high school kid in the knee rack over there. Hey, did you hear what I said? This isn’t right over there. Yeah, now there are bad yeah,
okay. You don’t got to step on a sip of birds. What are some things that cause you old folks allergies that could you do it? Just having somebody yucky like you? Did them golf jeans Voldemort? Yes it Voldemort. do dads that scratch the wood like scratching things? You know, I should say, Yeah, you know, obviously not a nonprofit there. But it’s funny video. And when you look at the bad lip reading series, what they’ve done really well is that even though their videos aren’t on one consistent schedule, the videos are so consistent, you know exactly what you’re going to get there. When a new viewer discovers something like that more NFL video, and the related videos or all other bad lip readings that are all similar. Very often, we’ll find that a viewer will get lost in that content and watch for a half hour, but they’ll subscribe to that channel, because they realize there’s more of those videos coming. And when they do subscribe to that channel, because everything they get is in that really specific compelling series, they’re going to remain a subscriber, and they’re going to click on those videos when they come in. So when you look at some of bad lip reading videos over the last couple of years, these things have 1015 20, in this case, 50 million views. And as soon as that video comes in a subscription box or comes into their social media feeds, they’re so familiar with the format that we’re finding huge click through rates, and we’re finding really long watch times. So consistency is really important. We can look at an example here from a nonprofit. This is a greenwash of the week. And again, it’s not the numbers of bad lip reading yet, but I think what they do really well when you look at the series is that, you know, when you’re watching greenwash of the week, going nuclear, just the fact that it’s called greenwash of the week, you know, there’s going to be more episodes to watch and their archives, and you know, if you subscribe, you’re gonna get more of these. So they’ve done a great job of creating a series format that’s simple to produce. But it’s also really consistent. And we talked about consistency, we’re talking about things like schedule, the personality, can you have a face and voice of the channel that really becomes the heart of the channel formats, like bad lip reading or greenwash of the week, or voice and just figuring out how to have a consistent voice from video to video. The fifth area here is around targeting. And I’m sure for a lot of you, this is something that you’re very familiar with who your audience is, and how you can reach them. And you use that in all your media campaigns. And YouTube is no different. But it is good to think about with a video series who exactly you’re going after, is there a clearly defined audience to the content. In this case, get to know anxiety, hot and cold flushes. This is something that’s very specific, so that if you see that title and you’re suffering from this, then you’re going to click on it, because that’s targeted to you. When we advise channels, we try to help them think about not just how many people are they going to reach with this video? And are they going to go quote unquote, viral? But who are they trying to reach? And what do they want from those people? So if what you’re looking to do is get donations, and you know that your donations are going to come from a specific group? What is that specific group most interested in? And how can you have a video that resonates with them, if you know that you need to reach CFOs, maybe there’s some kind of humor or emotional content that specifically relates to them. If you know that you’re looking to reach people in a certain city and all of your fundraising is going to come from the city of Philadelphia, maybe you’d want to consider making a video specific to Philadelphia, because you know that people aren’t going to donate from other areas. And then in some cases, that might be more of a mindset, or an actual condition that you’re targeting. So as a video creator, and as a YouTube channel, the question you’re asking yourself is, who are we targeting? And very often, what is it that will specifically be relatable to them, so they’ll share it. And to try not to focus too much on a viral video that reaches millions of people or more to think about within your target audience, what’s gonna be most compelling for them to share. And as you look at this series on the anxiety, you know, this is a very specific cause. So for them, it’s not necessarily the number of views or number of total subscribers, it’s reaching their specific audience. Targeting can happen at a video level. So that could be one specific video, like things that annoy New Yorkers, or you know, New Yorkers will share, it could be at a show level. So that would be something like an entire show, like the guild built around gaming, or it could be at a channel level, where you decide that you’re going to dedicate your entire channel to one subject matter for one specific target audience. The six areas around sustainability, and this overlaps a bit with consistency isn’t the kind of idea that if you make it and if the audience loves it, you’d be able to follow up on it and quickly make more. It’s always unfortunate when we see brands or nonprofits or media companies have a big hit video, but it’s the type of content that they can’t repeat and can’t capitalize on and build a consistent audience. So invisible people here is an example where they’ve actually been able to build a specific audience because the content itself is sustainable, and it’s really compelling. In this case, they’re going out and they’re interviewing these different people and each individual interview is relatively easy to produce, so they’re able to do it on a weekly basis. This is one channel The Fine Brothers that actually does about 70 or 80 million views a month. And when they speak on panels, it’s they say it’s one of their key rules. If they can’t shoot at least three episodes in one day, they actually move on to the next idea because they’ve gone into a pattern where they want to have two videos a week on their channel. And because they have to stick to that schedule, they figure out the kind of ideas that they can block, shoot and do consistently. So the next area here is around discoverability. And when we talk about discoverability, again, we’re talking more about the subject matter. from a creative standpoint, I would definitely mention if you’re looking for YouTube advice, or there’s somebody on your team that handles the optimization and the actual channel management, to go to youtube.com/playbook as there’s 150 page guide to all the specific things you can do to get the most out of YouTube. And it does have a lot of very specific advice on how to title and tag and mark your videos. But when we talk about discoverability here on touch, specifically on subject matter, and will the kind of content that you create be found through search and related videos. So one thing I always try to express to people about YouTube is that it is the second biggest search engine in the world after Google is millions of searches done daily. But those searches very often are for a specific video content. So you’ll see videos like how to tie a tie, where there’s dozens of videos with 10 plus million views, because you really need video to convey that subject and then other subjects that people would search for on Google, but they don’t necessarily need the video content. Another example that might be relevant to nonprofits. I once spoke to a medical company where they had a video channel and they had how to give CPR is one of their videos with 5 million plus views, because video is so critical to tell that story. And then on the other hand, they had videos about heart disease and cancer that didn’t rely on video, and they didn’t have as many views. And it was very often a matter of what will people search for from a video perspective. And also just taking in mind that there’s some subjects that people search for more in general, that maybe you can attach your nonprofit to. So here’s one example here from the Richmond chapter where even though it’s the Red Cross, the fact that they’re covering the Winter Olympic Games during the Olympics would lead to more search results on the video than something that didn’t have a topic that people would naturally be searching for. Okay, so the next subject here is around accessibility. And really, when we talk about accessibility here, we’re talking about the fact that on YouTube, a lot of times people stumble into videos, really not knowing what they’re gonna get, they may have search for one subject, your video came up in the search results, and they clicked on it, but it might not be exactly what they’re looking for. And you want to make sure you can still hook them in in those first 15 seconds or so. And also, if you have a consistent series, what are ways within that series to make it so each video really stands on its own is compelling on its own. So let’s look at an example here. The question you’re asking is, can every episode be appreciated by a brand new viewer, and an example here comes from RSA.
There’s a study released last year in the US. And it basically said that 71% of the American workforce is not happy at work is disengaged by their organizations 71 set. And actually a lot of this technology is part of the problem. And I wanted to address that I wanted to try and show people that there is a very different way to use technology and not just not professionalized, but our personalized to that really redress that balance and get people much more engaged and more productive in what they do at work. So when you use something like Facebook or Twitter, you are using a fundamentally different culture of collaboration, you are saying pretty much by default, everything I do is open, except for the bits that I choose. Contrast that to the standard, the culture of collaboration.
Okay, so like other videos, I definitely recommend that you watch the whole thing, this one happens to be 10 minutes long. It’s a good example that you don’t always need to be short form content on YouTube to be successful. This video at nine minutes has nearly a half million views. And we’re actually seeing a lot of really successful channels now succeed with 10 to 15 minute videos, the most subscribed channel on YouTube PewDiePie, which is a gaming channel with over 25 million subscribers often does 20 minute videos, I’d also recommend a channel called Vsauce, which has 10 to 15 minute videos also typically in that two to 3 million view range per video explaining different subjects. And here when we talk about accessibility of this specific animation, I think what the RSA does well is that within that first 15 seconds, they kind of present the problem around workplace issues. They give a statistic and then he really specifically says what the whole video is going to be about. So even if you were on YouTube, and you just googled I’m sorry, I searched on YouTube animation or reimagining and you were looking for a different video, and you ended up on this one, within those first 15 or 20 seconds, I think at least they have the potential to keep somebody watching, even if it wasn’t initially what they were searching for. And then when you watch the full video, of course, it fills in all those blanks that they introduced early on. So that’s a specific example of something that is really relatable within those first 20 seconds. And it’s been able to hook the viewer as far as the the next subject here. And again, I think you saw a preview of this in the glitch we had a minute ago, the collaboration on YouTube is, is really important for two reasons, partially because it certainly brings your channel new audiences. And if you collaborate with top YouTube channels that support a cause, you have the opportunity to tap into some of their fans. But the other thing that collaboration does on YouTube, is it prints the kinds of subscribers who really know how to engage and interact with the platform. So if you collaborate with a top YouTube star, in addition to having us go up very often able to pick up some of their subscribers, and their subscribers tend to be the ones who will interact with your channel and be more active. So the question you’re asking is, as you’re thinking about new video ideas and new series ideas, will there be a consistent way to feature guest stars, we can look at one example here, this is Matt Damon goes on strike. So this is from water.org, he actually set up something at our studio in Los Angeles, where he did multiple collaborations with channels like WheezyWaiter shaycarl, live through girls. And each of these videos actually had the video appear on the channel of the YouTube star not on the water.org channel. And then that YouTube star pushed people to the water.org channel. So as a result, the water.org channel was able to pick up a lot of new subscribers, I’ll play a little clip here from one of his collaborations.
Welcome to Let’s talk about something more interesting. Today on the show, we have Matt Damon. Hey, girls. Hi, Matt. How are you guys? Do it.
How do you how do you like? How do you like them? How do you like them apples?
Do you guys know anything about the water crisis.
So that video for water.org, you know, was successful, partially because he was able to expose his content to new viewers on that specific live Kruger girls channel. But also because he was able to basically put his creative content in the hands of these different YouTube channels. And instead of having them appear on water.org and follow a script, he actually turned himself over and put him his actual organization in the hands of these channels that really understand their own audiences. Here’s another example here from Epic Lloyd, which is actually the guy behind the Epic Rap Battles channel and another video that has 200,000 plus views for water.org. And all of these videos pushed people to the Cause at the end. And here you can see some of the subscribers that they got off of it and some of the channels they collaborated with. The final area here to talk about is inspiration. And we talked about inspiration on YouTube. As an individual YouTube creator, we often really encourage people not to go after what they see trending on YouTube, but to make sure that they pick a topic that they’re really inspired by, partially because that will shine through and viewers know when you’re actually talking about something you’re passionate about. And when you’re not. And partially because they need to keep making these videos, and they need to be excited about getting up and making them every day. So I think it applies to nonprofits also in thinking about not just what video will get the most views. But how can you think about the kind of video that will really come across to the viewer as the true mission and the true values of your organization? And YouTube channels do this as well. So the question you’re asking is, is this idea coming from a genuine place of passion? And one example here is jumper funds. So KevJumba is a creator who has been successful on the platform for five or six years, and he actually created a separate channel jumper Fund, which now has over a million subscribers So he was able to create a type of content he couldn’t do on his first channel. And then he’s actually posted elsewhere about what he’s been able to do on YouTube and how he’s been able to leverage that. And one way is that he actually took the revenue from these videos to build a school in Africa with the viewership that came in on them. So that is kind of a 30 minute overview of the things that I’ve found from seven years of being dedicated to excuse me, figuring out what works on YouTube are most important both for the content that I oversee and the channels that I work with on a regular basis. It’s shareability, conversation, interactivity, consistency, targeting sustainability, discoverability, accessibility, collaboration and inspiration, I’d remind you that you don’t need to do all 10 of these things with every video. But these are really the key fundamental areas and the levers that you can pull when you think about how consistent content on a regular basis can not just build big head videos, but also a really loyal, sustainable audience over the long term. A couple other things to cover. In terms of analytics, you have tools within YouTube, you should familiarize yourself when they’re all available at the playbook site to monitor your videos performance and figure out what’s working and why. When I think about channels, considering new content strategies, I often encourage them to consider being always in pilot mode and figuring out ways to try videos. And if they work, be able to quick capitalize on that. But early on in the process, try new things and look at the analytics of the videos. There’s also free demographic analysis, so you’re able to discover who’s watching your videos, and whether you’re reaching the kind of people that you want to watch. And finally, trap, tracking the efficacy of calls to action. So every video you have, you have the ability to end the video with annotations, asking people to subscribe to your channel and watch other videos. And you can go into analytics and understand whether or not those call to actions are working and what kind of language works and then adjust your videos as a result. The next thing that I briefly mentioned is hangouts on air. So you do have the ability to have dialogues with your actual potential donors or with the viewers of your channel. And I’d recommend that you do this and this has also has the capability within the Hangouts on Air feature to answer their questions, let them vote questions up, and make sure you’re addressing the issues that are most important to them. In terms of getting started on Google, in general, with all the different resources that are available to nonprofit organizations, the starting point I would recommend is google.com/nonprofits, which does have information on YouTube but also has specific things that are relevant to how you can use other services like Google Plus, and Google Maps to reach your audiences. And finally, a few resources to know about the first one is the main site, which is youtube.com/nonprofits, which has specific information to YouTube. The YouTube playbook for good can be found at youtube.com/yt/playbook. If you have specific questions about nonprofits that I can’t answer, like I said, most of my work is dedicated to creative and content strategy. But if you have more specific things that you want to answer, you can try emailing email@example.com, that someone get back to you directly. Information about Hangouts on air and live streaming can be found at google.com/plus. Learn more Hangouts On Air, and production spaces. We have a studio in Los Angeles, a studio in Tokyo, a studio in London, and a studio opening in New York, actually, in October. Each of these is available for use for free to channels with 10,000 subscribers or more. And we have the ability to have some of our strategists work with you on the actual production and provide you with free facilities that you can use to create videos. So that is about 40 minutes on YouTube, in general and content strategy. Before going to q&a, I would just encourage you all to understand what it takes to be successful on YouTube and will circulate this DAC and these principles, but also to be ambitious about experimenting with your channel and that very often. And this is for big channels on YouTube or channels just starting out. The most important thing to do is to figure out the types of videos that could work and not think of it as what would be a 20 episode series that we can Greenlight and put into production. But more think about what’s the single video that we can try to gauge the response from our audience and quickly figure out how you can iterate on that. We have great stories from nonprofits of them being able to raise money or raise awareness through their YouTube channels. There’s a lot of big videos and I’m sure you guys have seen that are really powerful and emotional or really funny or really relatable. There’s lots of different ways to reach audiences and I don’t think there’s one rulebook to how you can have a big hit video by following steps 123 And four, for me, it’s really always been about how can you experiment on the platform, understand what works best for your organization and build a content strategy that really takes into account that to build a loyal audience over time, you need to think about these principal factors, but also think about what is the thing they’ll be most relevant to them? And what is the thing that will really convey the values of your organization? So with that, hopefully, Debbie is still on Debbie, there.
I am. We’ve got quite a few questions, then. Okay, so much.
So our first question is, can you talk about tags for find ability? And how to choose them to describe your nonprofit? As most words seem very common?
Yeah, sure. You know, and some of these, I will default a bit to resources that we already have that have a lot of specifics. We have in the playbook a section again, youtube.com/playbook, which has very specific advice about the kinds of tags you use. And I if I understand the question correctly, in terms of common terms, you know, if you’re raising money for, let’s just say it was cancer, you know, just because you tag a video of cancer doesn’t mean you have come up in top search results. So what we found is to try to figure out what’s potentially most specific to that organization, or that media company or that brand, so that if you have a video, which covers a subject, that’s really specific to try to use different variations of that word, and try to go with things which maybe people are searching for specifically, and that you can track some of those search terms through Google Analytics as well. But yeah, I would say the best starting point would be the playbook because it was very specific advice on how you can actually tag your videos and what kinds of words work best.
Okay, great. All right. The next question we have is from Jerrel. And who says to successfully build a strong YouTube channel and complete these fundamentals? How much time are we looking at? And what kind of staff will we need?
The Great question, I don’t think that you need a full staff. But I do think that it’s really important to think about having one person who will be dedicated as the channel manager audience development, I think sometimes, when these channels are a bit of leadership by committee, that sometimes gets a little tougher to pull off. And that’s also when you find really inconsistent content, in terms of then the amount of time necessary, I would think that with a lot of these channels, there is the option to do something which doesn’t require much time at all. For some channels, it could be interview series, it could be that you’re taking content and doing behind the scenes of fundraisers that you’re doing and packaging that together. I don’t think that every YouTube channel needs to spend hours and hours per week building a content strategy. On the other hand, for some organizations, if you have the budget for it, I would think about a few key positions to fill. One would definitely be a dedicated person, as an audience development channel management person. Another thing to think about would be somebody who’s really leading the channel creatively. And then the other thing, which I mentioned earlier in the presentation is to think about, is there a way to have a real center voice of the channel who continually has this conversation with the audience and can appear in videos over the course of the year and interact with the audience, so that even if you’re doing event coverage, or showing one of your commercials, or doing some kind of Hangout On Air, someone who’s subscribed to the channel has somebody consistent on the channel, the presence, whether that’s somebody who’s in the organization could be the CEO, it could be somebody who’s a community leader, or it could potentially even just be somebody that you hire to be the face of the channel as an actor who supports the cause. But as far as like how much time per week it takes, I would say that’s something to consider. Is there somebody that you can get who you know, it’d be able to commit to the channel and put in a certain amount of time and filming so that as scriber, you keep seeing the same people.
Good point. Okay. The next question is from Pat, who asks, If a nonprofit is only tied to a particular geography, is YouTube still applicable? If so, any suggestions on how to position ourselves against the Nationals? Yes,
so good question, Pat. I think that, you know, one of the things to think about, like I said earlier, is that from a targeting perspective, are the things really specific to that region that will reach them? So if you have a nonprofit, but it’s really just based in St. Louis, is it the kind of content that people in St. Louis will share? And I don’t know if that means it’s about, you know, the Cardinals or it’s about a specific, you know, area in St. Louis, that people would relate to, or putting a spotlight on some of st Louis’s heroes and leaders, but in that regard, even if a video gets 2000 Using that community, it might be the right to 1000 people. And very often videos that are specific to one region work for that reason. So if you look at BuzzFeed video, that’s the channel does a billion views on YouTube. But it also has figured out ways to do really specific videos like 10 things, people from Texas never want to hear again, or 15 things that makes it you know, people from San Francisco crazy, those kinds of videos are obviously shared in those communities much more. And then the other thing I would say is that, you know, when you look at videos that are geared towards one specific area of the country, that it could be that that video is really meant to be an introduction to what your organization is about. And you can convey that in a way, it’s much more compelling through video than through text. So even if just on your website, and all your marketing materials are driving the one location, if there’s a video that greets those people that gives them an overview of the channel, it might be that your strategy isn’t to use YouTube as a way to quote unquote, go viral and have millions of views, it could be that it’s just the best way to introduce people to what your organization is all about, and to think about using it that way. And then after you get some of those views, it will still show up in YouTube search results for people in the city that are searching for your organization on YouTube.
All righty, Kimberly is asking, we have a couple of different directions to go for our YouTube channel, should we set up unique channels for each idea or keep everything associated with our organization?
You know, my general advice here is that it’s tough to maintain several unique channels and that it’s better to try to figure out one content strategy for for your organization. On the whole, I think that you know, when a channel is already huge, if you cross over the 100,000 subscriber mark, and you’re doing 10s of 1000s of videos, every video, that’s the point where you might say, Let’s spin off a second channel on one of these ideas, because we have the strength to maintain that audience. But until you get to that point, in most cases, I find that it’s tough to disperse your audience and run multiple channels at once, because it’s going to be so hard to have a consistent content stream.
Okay, Heidi is asking, How often do you need to post new videos to keep your subscribers coming back?
So how often do you need to post to keep the subscribers coming back? I think there’s kind of two parts of this. Part of it is that it’s good to be on a schedule no matter what that is. So if you have a video that once a month you have a video or once a week you have a video or in some cases, maybe you can get to once a day you have a video. In those cases, just having a schedule can really help so people know when to come back for videos. And know when they subscribe, there’s going to be more in terms of a good goal for how often to post I do think weekly is a good target if you have the type of content that you can produce weekly. And also think about ways to balance some of the bigger videos with some videos in between just to keep the channel active. So you know, if you’re if your organization has the budget to do two or three videos a year that you’re going to put in a few $1,000. And really use those as tentpole events, what some of the other content that you can have that we sometimes refer to as more hygiene content to just keep the channel active. And that could be having Q and A’s and people in the organization. It could be something where you’re doing something that’s more related to the community. But they’re they’re done in a way that essentially keeps a regular stream of content to supplement some of the bigger videos that you’re doing. All that said, also, you know, for a nonprofit organization, I definitely wouldn’t rule out the idea that for your strategy, it might make sense to do a couple of big videos a year. And when you see something like that, you know, Save the Children video in the UK, that’s 30 million views if they weren’t posting regularly, but that video was so big, obviously that continues to reach people every week. So it is somewhat dependent on the channel. I think in some cases, if your strategy is that for your organization, you want to reach a wide audience and you want to do that with a couple of big videos that you feel like are really shareable. I certainly wouldn’t rule that out.
Okay, and the next question is what are some easy and financially and financially reasonable ways to get music permissions from music used on videos?
Great question. There is a large library of over 100 songs on YouTube that are free to use. And when I circulated the list of videos I’ll include that link specific to that question. But there is a library that’s actually free to use on YouTube of all different music genres, which are often very helpful. I will say that, you know, having done online video for years and often with creators that are much smaller, a lot of them rely on sources like Apple Loops that have you know, free music that very often sound perfectly fine, or in some cases where they can license the music for 50 or 100. always attract. And it might not be completely unique to that organization. But for the average viewer, they’re certainly not going to recognize that song from one of those kinds of services. I’ve found that that doesn’t tend to be one of the bigger expenses with video, so long as you’re not concerned about having a completely original song. If you are looking for having a completely original song, I still have found that there’s freelancers out there and they can do things for several $100 That sound very professional.
Great, alrighty. Korean is asking, What about single videos not in a series that include footage from an event? And are more recaps than viewed focused? Do these have a valuable place?
I think they do. Yeah, I mean, you know, with all of these videos, there’s different purpose purposes that are potentially part of the organization’s goals. You know, one might be to reach new viewers and new donors, I think, sometimes event, recaps can be really motivating for the employees of an organization. And so when people work really hard on an event, and there’s a professionally produced video of that, for volunteers, and for other people, they want to share what they did on social media, a video can be really compelling. And it could be something that even if they don’t share it, it just makes them feel more proud of what they were able to pull off. So if you have 100, people go in pain at school, and you pay a few $100, for someone to document that and put it on your YouTube channel, it might again be one of those videos, that gets a few 100 views. But for the people that came out, to donate to have that captured on video is something that they can see and watch and see the results of their effort and share on their social media feeds instead of just pictures to show a bit of what they did. I think that’s something that’s really powerful, and something to consider. In addition to that, I think it can also show what the organization really does at events. And so you see some of these videos that are really emotional, emotionally compelling. There’s a recent article, I’d recommend you read those titled sad advertising about the recent trend of videos being so you know, emotional that clients are coming in and saying, I just want a video that makes someone cry by the end of it. So stuff like the dove video, and maybe you saw some of the pranks that airlines are doing giving people gifts in the holidays. And so that kind of emotional content is great. But it doesn’t always say what the organization is really about. And sometimes those behind the scenes videos, for someone that wants to learn more and wants to understand where their money is going, can give a very vivid picture of what actually the organization spends their money on. So my general advice would be yes, I do think it’s a good idea. But also to think about how does that fit into the overall content strategy, and make sure that you don’t have too many kinds of things on the channel that would confuse people.
Already, and we have one more question from Roy, who’s asking is Hangouts on the air feature like a live chat with viewers?
It is yeah, so there’s, there’s two different ways to do live programming and see here if I can go back in this deck with the links here. So hangouts on air and live streaming, which are both of that link, in the on the slide there, the differences, that live streaming, is something that you wouldn’t need to actually have conversations with other people. So an example of live streaming might be, you want to cover an event and just live stream it for 10 hours, as you pay in the building, use that example again, or you could live stream a message from the CEO, and he’s his live stream some of the annual reports and information and there’s no need to have a conversation. The Hangouts on Air is actually a different functionality, where you can have a conversation with 10 different people and actually broadcast that. So it’s still live stream. But it builds in the functionality of those people being able to converse with whoever is leading the Hangout. And it also, as I showed earlier, has some of those features that enable the audience viewing at home to ask questions and have those answers. So that’s kind of the difference there between the hangouts on air and live streaming. And both of them I think, you know, offer compelling ways to potentially offer video information about your channel and give people more immediate experience here thing that we found sometimes is that people will post the highlights of these hangouts after the fact. So the Brock Obama did a Hangouts on Air session with several different people about some of the causes he was supporting. And within that session, he was able to then take highlights and post those highlights on his channel for people to view later and actually packaged a little bit so he wasn’t showing the entire clip. So you can use Hangouts On Air, you can use live streaming, and you can also then of course, package that content and put on your YouTube channel after the fact.
All right, thank you so much, Ben. One second while I take back the presentation, okay. So I want to thank You, Ben for sharing your thoughts on implementing YouTube strategy in a fundraising office. So I want to thank all of our attendees and Ben, we also look forward to seeing you in a future webcast and at our fifth annual Community Network Conference in the Philadelphia area. So we’ve provided the link here. Hopefully we will see many of you there. So thank you so much. Have a great afternoon. And same to you Ben, thank you so much for your time.Read Less
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