How to Create a Nonprofit YouTube Channel
YouTube has made it easy to launch and manage your non-profit’s YouTube channel with their Nonprofit Program. Here’s an intro to using YouTube to promote your organization and how you can take advantage of the program right now for free.
Besides being the third most visited website in the world (logging nearly 20% of daily Internet traffic alone, according to Alexa.com), YouTube offers a free platform for you to drive your nonprofit’s message visually through short online videos.
Your organization can be a video star!
What? You don’t have a movie studio at your disposal? No worries! That’s what YouTube is for! If you need a camera or two there is a Flip Video Nonprofit Partner Program, that allows qualified organizations to get Flip Video cameras for free. For those of you who don’t qualify, You can pick up a Flip HD camcorder from your local electronics store for about $100. When plugged into your computer via USB, Flip gives you tools to edit your video and will upload your video directly to your YouTube account.
1. Sign Up at YouTube.com.
Signing up for a YouTube account is simpler than ever! You just visit the YouTube.com sign up page. After you sign up, you’ll be asked to verify your email address by clicking on a link sent to you via email by YouTube.
2. Customize Your Account
In the upper right hand corner, you will see your username with a drop-down box option. Click on the “My Channel” link. Here, you’ll have the ability to customize the look and feel of your new YouTube channel. You can adjust your channels picture (feel free to upload your logo); match the theme and color to your organization’s website for consistency; you can even adjust which modules will appear to your viewers and the ability to create playlists.
3. Post Your First Video
Click on “Upload” to post your first video and click the yellow “Upload video” button or simply drag and drop the video file stored on your machine into the dotted box aptly labeled “Drag and drop videos anywhere on the page”. This will initiate the upload process.
4. Titles, Descriptions and Tags – Oh my!
While you’re waiting for the video to upload, create a really catchy and descriptive title. The more detailed you are, the better. For example, “The Kids of the Children’s Coalition visit Governor Charlie Crist in Tallahassee Summer of 2007” is much more interesting than “TCCI visits the governer”. The same logic goes for the description and the keywords as well. These need to be consistent; for example, the description would expand on the title using the same words and the tags would be the same words used in the title and the description, separated by commas.
One last note about tags: these are “keywords”, and in following the same model of Google’s keyword search, they do not have to always be one-word tags. For example, “TCCI visits Crist” is just as search engine friendly as “TCCI, visits, Crist”.
5. Share the Video Love!
Once your video has finished uploading, you are able to share it with your network, friends, supporters; really, anyone and everyone! The quickest way to share this video is to copy the URL code and paste the link anywhere to want to share it (in an email blast, on Facebook, or on your blog).
Simply click on “My Videos” from the main navigation (found by clicking on your screen name drop-down box), and simply copy the URL of the specific video you want to share.
6. Put the video up on your website!
Not only can you share the video directly, but you can put it on your website by using “embed codes” – short pre-defined snippets of HTML code you can copy and paste – that will allow you to place your video on your site so that visitors do not have to go directly to YouTube to see your masterpiece!
From the video page itself, click on the “Embed” button in the small navigation pane just below the video player window. A box will be revealed that highlights a block of code. You’ll need to right-click and choose “Copy.”
Now log into your website’s TrustedPartner CMS. You’ll simply choose the page you want to post the video in, click on the “Source” viewer, and paste the code wherever you want the video to appear. It’s that simple! Switch back to the plain text viewer by clicking “Source” again and make sure the video is sized and aligned correctly. You can easily change the size of the video by adjusting the numbers in the “width” and “height” attribute of the embed code (highlighted below).
7. Apply for the YouTube Nonprofit Program Channel
Once you’ve got the basics down, it’s time to apply for a YouTube Nonprofit Program channel. It’s free and offers a plethora of juicy goodies and extras for your channel and page.
Go to the Nonprofit Program page and click “Apply Now”. Remember, you must first have a standard YouTube account to apply to the Nonprofit Program, so it’s a good thing you already set that up.
8. You’ve Just Begun!
You’ll eventually establish a habit and relationship with YouTube. The Flip HD camera is as easy to tote around as a cell phone, so have it ready at events, fundraisers, and really during your daily activities. Shoot a quick 2 minute video of a staff member demonstrating a particular activity, plug it in the computer and load it up to YouTube, all in one swift, easy motion. Share the link or video using the embed code to blogs, email lists, Facebook, and just about anywhere else you can think of, and what you’ve essentially got is endless access to a big, free soapbox with loud speakers and your non-profits name on it.
Looking for examples? Here are a few of our client’s YouTube pages to give you a few ideas:
- Palm Beach Atlantic University’s YouTube Channel
- Community Foundation for Palm Beach and Martin Counties
As the Chief Operating Officer of Forte Interactive, Slade leads marketing, operations, human resources, and product development, while overseeing a staff of Millennial employees.
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