Determine Goals for Your YouTube Channel

By Rob Ciampa, Theresa Moore, John Carucci, Stan Muller, Adam Wescott

Your YouTube channel showcases something you’re passionate about. What drives you to create a YouTube channel and content isn’t so different from what motivates you to do other things in life, such as

  • Host a fundraiser

  • Write a blog

  • Support a cause

  • Give something back to society

  • Earn some income

  • Learn a new hobby

The reason that YouTube is such a great place for you to share your passion is because video is a supremely effective medium for getting your audience to engage with you. Learn to put that medium to use for you.

Though building your channel is one major goal, you’ll likely have additional goals. Here are some other reasons for creating your YouTube channel and the content it contains:

  • Build a brand. There’s no better way to show who you are, either as an independent creator or as an organization, than by way of a video or series of videos on your channel. The content might include different types of videos — something you’ve created, straight news, information about you, or a combination. Your motivation for brand building could be to obtain a new job, attract attention from industry luminaries, or make people feel good about your products.

  • Educate your target audience. Most people love to learn, and much of the successful content on YouTube revolves around education and tutorials. Educational content includes home repair, product configuration, justification for social causes, and many more topics. Educational content also helps drive brand awareness.

  • Entertain the crowd. People love to laugh, enjoy music, and get engrossed in a good story. These genres are all forms of entertainment, and all work especially well on YouTube.

    Many forms of entertainment are highly subjective, so be sure to tailor your content so that it connects with the specific audience you’re trying to reach.

  • Sell something. It doesn’t matter whether you have a product to sell, a subscription to offer, or a candidate to elect, your YouTube channel is a great way to demonstrate to your audience that they want what you’re offering. People are turning to YouTube to make buying decisions about future purchases. Make sure you understand that YouTube is now a primary source of information used to influence a sale. In the past seven years, YouTube searches for video reviews have more than doubled.

  • Earn a living. We’ve explained that your videos can make money by driving and influencing sales. You can also earn a living from people watching your YouTube videos by monetizing your channel.

Don’t quit your day job — at least not yet. Making money from YouTube takes time, creativity, and persistence. Even the best‐laid plans can’t guarantee results if you don’t (or your content doesn’t) resonate with your target audience. Don’t fret: Your YouTube channel may be a nice source of supplemental income, eventually.

Don’t feel that you have to keep your goals separate. Michael Stevens’ popular Vsauce channel does a great job of combining educational goals with entertainment to keep his audience (almost 8 million subscribers) coming back for more.

Creating viral videos shouldn’t be your goal. Betting your YouTube strategy on producing viral videos is like betting your entire retirement savings on winning the lottery. Attain your goals through proper planning and execution, not through chance.