Wednesday, November 28, 2012

YouTube Creator Playbook and Creator Hub: fresher, bolder, and live on the web

The new YouTube Creator Playbook, your definitive resource for building an audience on YouTube, is now live, both on the web and available for download. Check it out and bookmark youtube.com/playbook.  


 
Since we released the second edition of the Creator Playbook in February 2012, much has changed in the world of YouTube. This new version provides fresh tips and strategies to help creators grow their audiences. It includes brand new sections to address YouTube’s recent focus on watchtime, such as, how to captivate your audience and how to create the best channel experience for your viewers. The latest edition also highlights new tools like paid promotion, Hangouts on Air, and InVideo programming to help you reach the widest audience possible. And, what’s YouTube without video? On the Creator Playbook site, we’re featuring great new video examples from inspiring creators who are finding creative ways to use YouTube. So go ahead and check it out - share it with other creators. And most of all, let us know what you think so that we can continue to make this the best resource for you! We’ve also completely rebuilt, refreshed, and revamped the YouTube Creator Hub at youtube.com/creators, which is chock full of resources and tools to help you build larger audiences, improve your skills, and make more money. On the new Creator Hub, you’ll be able to:
  • Stay up to date on the latest feature announcements with our blog, social media outlets, and new bi-weekly Product Bulletin
  • Learn from other creators via video tutorials and find new tools to help you grow your success
  • Find new opportunities to join programs like Next Creator
The new Playbook is currently available in English, but will be available in more languages in the next week. We’ll continue to keep both the Creator Playbook and Creator Hubs updated, so keep them bookmarked, and remember to follow us on Google+. Lauren Vilders, Audience Development Coordinator, recently watched “You need to toughen up a bit

Our November featured On The Rise partner is polcan99!

Congratulations to Tom Antos of polcan99, our featured “On The Rise” partner for this month. His channel is featured on the “Spotlight” section of the YouTube homepage today.

Tom has been a YouTube partner for three years, but has dedicated his entire career to film direction, cinematography, and VFX. His expertise has earned Tom an array of awards as he’s worked on both large productions and small-budget projects including Hollywood features, short films, and music videos. On YouTube, Tom goes one step further, uploading tutorials to share his experience and knowledge with his filmmaking peers. He can help you design great-looking music video shots, entertain you with a Dragon Ball remake action video, or even let you choose your own real-life Angry Birds adventure! No matter what you choose to watch, you’ll be impressed with Tom’s innate talent and his dedication to both entertaining and educating his viewers.



Here are a few words from Tom:
I'm a filmmaker, and I love good entertainment. Doesn't matter if it's a good TV show, film, stage play or a book, I enjoy it all. Now I try to create entertainment on the internet... more specifically on YouTube, mainly because of their great tools. I now have 2 channels; Polcan99 is where I put up my action and VFX filled films along with filmmaking tutorials... and GalgaTV is where I put up comedy videos. I feel very fortunate to be able to entertain others for a living, and I'm thankful for being chosen by YouTube as the November "On The Rise" Partner. If you like what you see on any of my channels then please subscribe! 
If you’ve enjoyed this monthly On The Rise blog series and want to see more rising YouTube partners, check out our On The Rise channel. Keep an eye out next month for a chance to nominate some of your favorite channels for On The Rise in 2013 - we’ll be coming back to you in January with another round of rising talent.

Christine Wang and Devon Storbeck, YouTube Partner Support, recently watched “More Twilight - A Bad Lip Reading of The Twilight Saga: New Moon.”

Monday, November 26, 2012

YouTube Space Los Angeles: where creators learn, share, and create.

At YouTube we're only as successful as you, our creators. From our NextUp series and the launch of a new home page focused on your channels, to funding a small group of original channels, our goal remains the same: to help all our creators build big audiences on YouTube.

That’s why we’re thrilled today to announce the opening of YouTube Space Los Angeles -- our flagship collaboration and production facility built for the exclusive use of YouTube partners.  

The Space, a 41,000 square foot former helicopter hangar in Playa Vista, is a place where established and emerging creators from our Partner program can work together to cultivate big ideas and ambitious ways to tell their stories. And like the YouTube Space London, YouTube doesn’t charge you any fees for use of the Space or the production equipment that’s housed there.

At the YouTube Space LA creators can:

Learn: From training programs and workshops to master classes, there are plenty of opportunities to get hands-on experience from industry leaders.

Share: Attend events, meet fellow creators, spark new ideas and share your favorite ways to use YouTube.

Create: This is your space to bring your stories to life. You’ll have access to a variety of resources, including two production stages, a recording studio, three green screen rooms, a motion capture studio, a screening room, collaboration spaces, a backlot equipment room with cameras, lights, mics and grip equipment available for checkout, and more. Production access is on an application basis, open to YouTube creators who qualify. 


Watch this video for an inside look at the Space: 


Find more creator resources at youtube.com/creators and learn more about the YouTube Spaces in Los Angeles and London at youtube.com/space.
Want to be part of the Winter Creator Class at YouTube Space LA?  Submit your application for the class here by December 3.  Kathleen Grace, Manager of Production and Programming, YouTube Space LA, recently watched Thanksgiving Outfits for Jive Turkeys

Monday, November 19, 2012

Coming soon: Link your channel with a Google+ page (and keep your channel name)


Over the past several months we’ve been giving YouTube users the ability to change how they appear on YouTube, by using their Google+ profile on their YouTube channel.  Well-known creators such as Michael Buckley, Philip DeFranco, Kina Grannis, and Felipe Neto have chosen to use their Google name as their identity on YouTube, by linking their Google+ profile with their Channel. This has helped them access engagement and social features like Hangouts on Air.

You may have seen a prompt like the one below inviting you to use your Google identity on YouTube. If you haven’t, and you can opt in right now using your account settings.


Or you can keep your channel name!

While using a full name from a Google+ profile might work well for a creator who wants to build their brand as an individual, this simply doesn’t work if you don’t want a full name on your channel.  If you run a channel with a name like BlueXephos or VlogBrothers, you should create a Google+ page (as opposed to a profile) with that name.

In the coming weeks we’ll launch the option to link your channel with a Google+ page, which will allow you to use your channel name (even with spaces in it!) as your Google identity.  And yes, the advanced Google+ page management features that enable up to 50 people manage a single Google+ page, or a single person to manage up to 50 Google+ pages, will also work for channels that are linked with Google+ pages.

We’ve been beta testing this option with some channels such as Google Analytics and YouTube Creators, and we’re planning to make this feature available to all creators in the coming weeks.

Why should creators use a Google identity?

If you unify your YouTube identity with Google+, it will be easier for your audience to find and connect with you on YouTube, Google, and across the web, and it will help you build your brand across all of Google’s products.  We’re also continually developing new engagement features like Hangouts on Air that take advantage of the best that both YouTube and Google+ have to offer.

David Boyle, recently watched MEERKATS 3D

Friday, November 16, 2012

The Channelization of YouTube: how you can build a cohesive channel experience


This blog post is part of an ongoing series that shares tips from the YouTube Creator Playbook. The Playbook is YouTube’s official resource of best practices for audience development.

You’ve heard about the channel-ization of YouTube. Success is no longer just about getting a one-off viral hit. Now, more than ever, to be successful on YouTube, you need to think about how to create a cohesive channel experience for your audience. You’ve got to take on the role of channel programmer. This means really investing time into your channel, and building your subscriber base. Why? The numbers speak for themselves: subscribers watch nearly twice as long as non-subscribers. In other words, your subscribers are your fan base.  

Here’s a few things you can do to develop your channel:

  1. Promote your channel! Remember, your audience doesn’t know about your channel and all the great content that’s there unless you let them know! So, go ahead and message this out to your audience: invite your viewers to check out your channel through a call to action in the video’s introduction, or a branded end-card. Also, if you haven’t spent time with the new Invideo programming feature, check it out. This new, easy to use feature is a great way to reinforce channel branding across all videos in your library and drive your audience to all your other content.

Another easy way to promote your channel is through your videos’ metadata description. In addition to context around the specific, individual video, add a brief snippet about your channel, and provide links to the channel page, as well as programmed playlists.  

  1. Make playlists a key piece of your channel strategy. Playlists create a programmed, extended viewing experience for your audience, and they’re also a great way to increase watch-time.

Use playlists to program your channel -  separate shows into different playlists, or group content around similar themes or tent-pole events. You can use the ‘start and end time’ feature to set in and out points for all the videos you curate into playlists. And, if you want to go the extra mile, consider creating and optimizing hosted playlists. Hosted playlists have intros and/or interstitial content to provide context in between videos. Once you’ve got your playlists all ready to go, publish full playlists to your subscribers through the channel post feature.

  1. Program the channel feed. Think of your channel’s activity feed as the your main line of communication with your subscribers. Make sure your feed is active so that your audience keeps coming back for more. When you add a video to a playlist, like, or comment on a video, it appears in the feed for your subscribers to see. So, mix up your own uploads with curated content, and be a tastemaker for your audience.

All of the content you upload and promote through the activity feeds collectively tells your audience a story about your channel and what it stands for. Make it count - tell a strong, interesting one!

Those are just a few quick tips to help you start thinking about your channel strategy. As we roll out new features, we’ll be sure to let you know how you can use them to make the most out of your channel.

Lauren Vilders, Audience Development Coordinator, recently watched “Shaun Sperling Bar Mitzvah Dance - Madonna, Vogue - 3/14/92




Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Merch where it matters most


We’ve heard from many of you that creating awesome content on YouTube is becoming (or already is) your dream job. Besides advertising revenue, we understand that being able to sell merchandise is important in helping you achieve this dream. Over the past year, we launched the Merch Store and rolled it out to help partners promote their related merchandise.

Today, promoting merch on YouTube got a huge power-up. We are announcing that all verified partners in good standing will be able link to their merch directly in their videos, including merchandise sold in various online stores. That’s right, next time you are wearing that new t-shirt you made for your fans, you can place a Merch Annotation that links to your products right in the video.

The process for creating Merch Annotations works the same as for making other Annotations, so see the Help Center for instructions. Merch Annotations will allow you to link to any of your products on the following retail destinations: Google Play, Shopify, District Lines, Cafepress, Spreadshirt, Topspin, Jinx, Songkick, and iTunes. We’ve added more retailers than were available through the Merch Store and will be adding even more in the next few months.  Please note that we require that your Merch Annotations only link to your own licensed merchandise.

Going forward, YouTube will be focusing its merch-promotion tools on Merch Annotations, so we’ll be sunsetting the Merch Store today.

A final tip on using Merch Annotations successfully: as much as you want viewers to buy your merch, you probably also want them to watch your videos, too! YouTube search is optimized for watch time so you are rewarded for the more time your viewers spend watching your videos. So be thoughtful about when to keep your fans watching videos versus sending them to buy your merch. Talking about your merch in a video is also a great way to let fans know which products you are promoting and more importantly why they matter to you.


...
Christian Weitenberner, partner product manager, recently watched “The Guild Season 6.”

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Vote for your favorite November “On The Rise” nominee

In our monthly On The Rise program, we identify four partners whose channels are seeing significant growth but haven’t yet reached the 100,000 subscriber mark. This month, we’re sharing with you four dedicated partners who are getting quite close to hitting that milestone so you can help give them a chance to jumpstart their audience development and channel growth. Our November nominees have already built strong follower networks by sharing their passions about fashion and beauty, VFX and cinematography, songwriting and music, and green science education.

Here’s where you come in - you actually have the chance to help push these partners even further on YouTube. Review their videos below, vote for your favorite here, and one of these candidates will have the opportunity to be featured on the YouTube homepage later this month. In addition to your votes, each channel will be evaluated on criteria such as viewer engagement and channel optimization techniques to decide which partner will be featured on the homepage, Google+, Facebook and Twitter at the end of the month.

In past months, featured On The Rise partners like GoneToTheSnowDogs and RichardGaleFilms have gained many subscribers and seen their careers take off, in large part due to your support. This month’s poll will be open until November 20, 5pm PT, so don’t forget to vote for your favorite channel. Check back to see who secured the homepage feature on November 28.

AllThingsFabulous101
Asia gets back to basics in her videos, offering style and beauty tips and tricks for beginners. A self-described fashion and makeup lover, her channel is a great resource for a ton of easy how-tos, tutorials, and hauls.



polcan99
Simultaneously wearing hats as a director, cinematographer, and animation/video effects artist, Tom Antos has nearly 15 years of experience in the film industry. You can check out a sampling of his projects (which range from music videos to feature films to DIY projects), VFX skills, and even behind-the-scenes tutorials on polcan99, one of several channels Tom manages.



krissysings
Krissy and Ericka Villongco are sisters who play and sing pop-acoustic music. This duo hails from the Philippines and released two albums in 2012 and 2009. Their channel features a variety of their covers and original songs. Check it out for some feel-good music



GREENPOWERSCIENCE
This environmentally-focused channel houses an array of educational videos about electricity, solar energy, and wind power. Dan and Denise, the creator-curators behind this project, also host live classes, but you can let your inner backyard scientist geek out and get a preview over at their channel.



If you’re interested in checking out more rising YouTube Partners, visit our On The Rise channel, which features nominees, trending partners and monthly blog winners.

Devon Storbeck and Christine Wang, YouTube Partner Support, recently watched “The World's Smallest Dog.”

Thursday, November 8, 2012

November 12th Live Stream: YouTube Product Updates and an Interview with OlgaKay

On Monday, November 12th, the YouTube Partner Support team is hosting a Partner Meet-Up in Los Angeles. The event is at capacity so if you’re not already registered to join us in person, be sure to tune in at youtube.com/partnersupport.

During the meet-up, we'll be live streaming an update from the YouTube Product team on changes to your video management features and YouTube / Google+ identity integration. Additionally, we’ll be livestreaming the next episode of “Partner Support Talks With...” featuring OlgaKay. You can find a schedule for the stream below:


TimeSession
2:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. PSTUpdates on YouTube / Google+ Identity Integration
2:30 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. PSTUpdates on New & Upcoming Video Management Features
3:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m. PSTPartner Supports Talks with... OlgaKay


We want to hear from you! Throughout the stream we’ll be taking live questions from viewers around the world via comments on youtube.com/partnersupport.

We’ll also be soliciting questions in advance for our talk show with OlgaKay. Have questions for Olga? Submit your questions and vote for the questions you like here: http://goo.gl/KWn4i

Can’t tune in? Don’t worry - as always, we'll also post the episode on youtube.com/partnersupport after the show.

John Langan and Devon Storbeck, YouTube Partner Support, recently watched "BUYRAL - Professional Clicking."

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

YouTube Now: How we design our site through experimentation

This is the second of a series called “YouTube Now,” in which we explain how we’re evolving the site, and why. Would you like to suggest a topic of interest to creators for a future YouTube Now? Please drop it in the comments below.

As a creator, you know by now that YouTube is always evolving. Over the past year, we’ve changed how the site looks and works, and these improvements have driven significant gains in subscriptions and the total time your fans are watching YouTube.

Every site change has a purpose. We know we’re doing it right when people subscribe to more channels and spend more time watching them.

When we upgrade YouTube in a major way, we’ll always give our creators advance notice, both here on this blog and at our creator meetups, Hangouts and social media.

But sometimes you may arrive at YouTube and notice that it looks unexpectedly different. Well, here’s what’s up. We experiment and test every change, big or small, by showing it to a small set of viewers. For example, last year we tested removing a thin border from around video thumbnails. Our experiment showed it resulted in a nearly 2% increase in clicks on suggested videos. So we pushed that change to everyone.

We don’t just test YouTube through online experiments, though. We also run in-person focus groups with a diverse set of people, some of whom subscribe to hundreds of channels, some of whom watch YouTube less frequently.

Right now, we’re in a period of intensive testing to build a new YouTube that supports longer viewing sessions and makes fan engagement more rewarding. (TechCrunch recently spotted one of these experiments, for example.)

How can you help us build the best YouTube? On every page there’s a “Send feedback” link. Tell us what’s working for you, and what’s not.

Thanks for your help as we continue to build the next version of YouTube for you and your fans. We’re lucky to have such a deeply engaged community here, and your feedback will help design the future of YouTube.

Eric Meyerson, head of content creator communications, recently watched Prophetic 1995 Student Internet PSA.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Join us for a Hangout On Air chat with TheSlowMoGuys!

Join the Partner Support team this Friday, November 9, at 10am PT / 1pm ET while we chat with Gavin Free of TheSlowMoGuys. Gavin and his co-creator Dan are accomplished YouTubers who have been experimenting with high-speed cameras for many years both professionally and as a hobby. Their channel showcases uniquely creative videos and fascinating insight to the slower side of life. We’ll be chatting with him about his experience on YouTube, how he produces his videos and how he has grown his channel.

As usual, we will be live streaming the hangout on the YouTube Partner Support channel and on Google+ at http://goo.gl/Ncxer.

We'll give plenty of time for Gavin to share his production tips and YouTube stories, but most of all we'd love to make sure he answers all of your questions. If you have a burning question for him about his Channel, how he makes his videos, or any tips he has on how to become a successful YouTube partner, submit them here: http://goo.gl/LfjM2.

Hope to see you this Friday, November 9!

Cheryl Pon, YouTube Partner Support, recently watched "Giant 6ft Water Balloon - The Slow Mo Guys."

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Giving you more control and convenience for publishing videos


Many of you have told us you want more control and convenience when publishing videos to your YouTube channel. You want features that will save you time and give you more flexibility as you build an audience on your channel. Starting today all creators around the world will have three new publishing features: public videos that don’t notify subscribers, adding custom thumbnails while the video uploads, and a new tags editor.

Public videos that don’t notify subscribers

Have you ever wanted to upload a “behind the scenes” video to your channel and don’t want this video to take up valuable real estate in subscribers’ feeds? Or uploaded a long video but also wanted to publish short clips? Maybe you want to publish a quick video without interrupting your publishing schedule?

We’ve heard many creators want to upload public videos that don’t notify their subscribers in their homepage feed, via email (for opted in subscribers), and in youtube.com/my_subscriptions.  Your default will remain that your subscribers are notified about your public uploads, but now you can choose to uncheck this option to “Notify subscribers” in the Advanced Settings section during the upload process.  If you use our batch upload  features in CMS, we also have an equivalent XML tag available. Public videos that you choose not to notify subscribers about will still be discoverable through search, suggested videos, and on your channel.




Upload a custom thumbnail right after the upload begins

In April, we launched one of the most requested features by creators, the ability to set the custom thumbnail directly in the upload interface, while the video is uploading. We received a lot of positive feedback about this change, but many of you pointed out that this would be even more convenient if you could upload the custom thumbnail earlier during the upload process, rather than towards the end.  Beginning today, you can pick your preferred thumbnail right away, shortly after the video upload starts.  

New tags editor

We now have  a simpler interface to input and manage your tags.  Just type in the text for each tag, and either add a comma or hit enter.  This will store the text as a distinct tag.  Once the tag has been entered, the text will be surrounded by a blue box which indicates that the word or phrase you entered has been entered as a tag. 





Keep the feedback coming

We’re constantly working to make the upload process more efficient and effective for creators.  Your feedback is always helpful and appreciated, so let us know at +YouTube Creators how we can continue to improve our publishing tools.

Johannes Leitner, Balazs Dezso, and Duane Barlow, YouTube Upload engineers, recently watched  http://youtu.be/A5Uvdx0IyXo