Archive for June, 2012

June 26, 2012

YouTube shares the secrets that could make you an online video star

I recently stumbled across the YouTube Creator Playbook – a 91-page guide to producing online videos. It provides a detailed breakdown of how to create, publish, and promote great content.

Each section has an overview, details, examples, and a how-to-guide to help all of us amateur YouTubers become a little more professional. It’s quite thorough, and contains sections covering:

  • YouTube Analytics
  • Grabbing your audience with a 15-second hook
  • Calls to action
  • The importance of consistency: Releasing content at scheduled intervals
  • Tent-pole programming
  • Optimization (metadata, thumbnail, channel page, publishing, etc.)
  • Involving your audiences
  • Spreading your videos onto other social netowrks
  • Video annotations
  • Playlists and video responses
  • Video production and publishing checklists
  • And more

If you’re in the online video business, I strongly recommend this read.

BUT…If you’re in the Ottawa area this week (Wednesday, June 27th), you could also drop in on the YouTube Workshop – Create, Engage, Monetize to get some first-hand instruction directly from two senior YouTubers. This FREE event bills itself as “an informative hands-on session to understand what it takes to ‘go viral,’ reach the right audience, and ultimately monetize your content!” During the YouTube Workshop, attendees will hear personal experiences from presenters about how they were able to engage with their audience and make their channel a success. Basically, the whole event is about learning how some content creators are doing gangbusters online, and how to follow in their success.

As an added teaser, there will be a “special guest appearance” from a popular YouTube star. I asked the event organizer if they could share more details and was told “It’s someone with incredible experience using YouTube, Google+ and Google hangouts as a way to expand and monetize their brands.”

I’m definitely looking forward to this event.

More about the speakers:

Andres Palmiter, Audience Development Strategist for YouTube, who previously worked for comScore where he managed the global sales of their video measurement service, Video Metrix. Before joining comScore, Andres worked at Next New Networks (NNN) where he went from intern, to executive producer, to partner manager. He’s most proud of recording the NNN chime that ends every NNN-distributed video (ding). Over 1 billion views and counting! Andres’s current YouTube subscriptions include ZeFrank1, Numberphile, Vsauce, and AgentXPQ.

Brandon Gross, Sr. Strategist with YouTube’s Next Lab, where he works with funded partners and identifies new talent to grow on the platform. Prior to joining YouTube, Brandon founded and was a Managing Partner at Urgent Content, the agency responsible for the award-winning Flip Video broadcast and online campaign. Prior to forming Urgent Content, Brandon was a Creative Executive and then Director of Brand Engagement at Current TV. He has produced hours of non-fiction broadcast and online television and co-created the G4 TV series, “2 Months, $2 Million.”

June 14, 2012

Father’s Day and your Digital Dad

When I was a boy (way back in the 1900s), Father’s Day and Mother’s Day were easy. You got together with family, ate a lot of food, and gave mom and dad cards and gifts. Simple, easy, done. But earlier this week, I started thinking about all the other bases I have to cover because my dad is on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and of course email. I figured that this now means a wall post, tweet, G+ hangout, and possibly a lame animated eCard. But after a little bit of my daily internet rummaging, I realized that the wonderful world wide web has a lot to offer if you’re looking online for Father’s Day ideas…Here’s what I found:

Social Coupons. Groupon, and other community buying services, are tailoring their offers this week for dad. You can get a great deal for dad on: 5-hour competition BBQ cooking classes, exotic car racing laps at race tracks, $150 worth of golf equipment, photo mugs,  6-hour charter salmon fishing trip, etc.

As a mild warning, I bought a Groupon from FTD florists this past Mother’s Day and was seriously disappointed. The flowers never showed up. So I tweeted about  the issue, and within 24 hours I was refunded in full and a great bouquet arrived for my mother. Good customer service from FTD and Groupon to make this right.

Father’s Day Gift Ideas. Sure, there are plenty of retailers and other websites offering their ideas for dad, but my favourite has to be the 10 Best Father’s Day Gifts for Geeky Dads from @Mashable. Here you’ll find binary code t-shirts, lego tie clips, Moleskine notebook shell cases, and more.

iPhone Apps. Appadvice.com curated a list of iPhone apps dad might like. With offerings of primarily sports games and reading apps, this list left me scratching my head a bit; perhaps it is designed for the teen-dad in your family.

Google Doodle. Google has showcased a Father’s Day Google Doodle (log0) every year for over a decade, so watch for a new one this Sunday. I anticipate they will use the one below originally posted March 19, 2012 when Father’s Day is celebrated in some European and Central American countries.

And, of course, if you were out late on Saturday night and you’re due at the pulpit in 15 minutes but forgot your sermon at the pub, don’t worry: pull out your smart phone and check out these Father’s Day sermons from preaching.com.

Hope everyone has a great Father’s Day full of red meat, relaxation, and good beer!

June 6, 2012

Are your tweets worth reading?…Probably not [Infographic]

For years now, my Twitter rule-of-thumb has been to always keep my audience in mind when I tweet. I often ask the question “how is this of value to my followers, or to the individuals I’m interacting with?” If I can see value, I send it; if it’s a bit weak, I think twice. Sure I’ve sent out some garbage tweets over the years, but for the most part I think I’ve been pretty consistent.

Essentially I’m trying to share content that is worth consuming and sharing, but I’ve never really stopped to think what percentage of my tweets are “worth reading” according to my readers. A recent study that appeared in the Harvard Business Review suggests that only 36% of the average users’ tweets were actually “worth reading”, leaving the remaining 64% to be either “just OK” or “Not worth reading” at all.

This study asked 1,400+ users to rank 40,000+ different tweets, and they were able to compile a list of the best and worst “types” of tweets. There were a couple surprises in there. First, “random thought” and “self-promotion” tweets were most popular. I would have thought that these would have been considered useless or too self-interested, but it turns out that the “random thoughts” are often good for a laugh, and self-promotional tweets are welcome when they link to useful resources and information.

Another surprise is that “conversation” tweets ranked as one of the worst types of tweets. It appears that most Twitter users don’t appreciate public conversations between a few people.  Personally, I like these tweets. I love having open conversations on Twitter. I will use a RT to provide the context of the conversation and add my additional thoughts as well.  I often find that others who were not in the original conversation will chime in to further the discussion and offer new points-of-view.

Now for the infographic:

What percentage of your tweets do you think are “worth reading”?

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