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Setting Up Your Organization’s YouTube Channel

Building Your YouTube Presence

Customize Your Channel

The Basics

  • Reach Out. Post videos that get YouTube viewers talking, and then stay in the conversation with comments and video responses.
  • Partner Up. Find other organizations on YouTube who complement your mission, and work together to promote each other.
  • Keep It Fresh. Put up new videos regularly and keep them short—ideally under 5 minutes.
  • Spread Your Message. Share links and the embed code for your videos with supporters so they can help get the word out.
  • Be Genuine. We have a wide demographic, so high view counts come from content that’s compelling, rather than what’s “hip.”
Design Your Channel. Go to Channel Design, then choose a color scheme to match your logo or other materials, and decide which modules you’d like to display on your public profile.
Add Banners and URLs. Once you have created your channel and been approved, go to Branding Options, upload your icons and banners, and enter any of the other options you’d like to use.
Choose Your Top Video. The top video on your channel automatically plays each time someone visits your page—choose it wisely. Update this video regularly to keep it fresh, or keep your most important video there as an introduction.
Get Donations Flowing. Sign up for Google checkout, then go to your Google Checkout Options, enter your ID and Merchant Key, and choose donation amounts. Once you’ve filled in the information, the button will appear on your public profile and all of your video pages.

Develop Compelling Content

There are lots of ways to build a community around your YouTube channel, and you should experiment with them all. Here are a few ways to create videos of interest and interact with the YouTube Community.

Direct Dialogue. Make videos that create a dialogue about your work and what you’re trying to achieve. Ask questions and solicit video responses.
Tell Serial Stories. Engage viewers with a series of videos that tell a story around a specific theme, and keep them coming back for more. Once you’ve created a few episodes, visit your playlist page and create a new playlist. This allows you to develop several video narratives targeted at particular demographics.
Respond to Current Events. Address relevant news stories by posting videos that explain your position. You can then embed them in emails to your supporters—a video message can be more effective than a text-laden email.
Use Endorsements.Whether they’re from celebrities or people you’ve impacted, it helps to have supporters chiming in about why your work matters.

Network and Distribute

Tag and Title Well. Tag and title your videos with relevant keywords—that’s how users will find your content as they navigate YouTube.
Embed. Broadcast your videos over the web by embedding them on your website and encouraging supporters to do the same on theirs.
Click “Subscribe”. Subscribe to the YouTube channels you’re interested in to stay up-to-date on their content; they may return the favor.
Engage and Interact. Draw attention to your work by interacting with both allies and adversaries through video responses, text comments, or joint projects.
Make Web Traffic a Two-Lane Road. Use your video description field and branded banner URL to drive users to your website, and link to your YouTube channel from your website to encourage people to interact with your video content here.

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