Plan Your YouTube Channel Ahead of Time

By Janine Warner, David LaFontaine

Part of the beauty of YouTube is that it has democratized starting up your very own television network in a way that could never have been anticipated a decade ago. And more than that, plain old broadcast TV networks pale in comparison to the reach and power of YouTube. Billions of people around the world can watch a video, creating instant global pop culture phenomena like Psy, and Justin Bieber.

Creating your own channel on YouTube is about more than just showing off for your friends. In the last few years, YouTube (and its corporate owners at Google) have gotten serious about empowering their power users to monetize their creations.

But before you start getting visions of Hollywood stardom, waving to your screaming fans from red carpet premieres and reserving parking space for your own private Gulfstream V Jet, you’re going to need to design a spiffy-looking YouTube channel to entice all your fans-to-be to click to follow you.

For your video creations for YouTube, be sure that you’re not infringing on any copyrights. Beginner YouTube copyright mistakes often include casually using a favorite song or a sequence from a favorite movie.

Over the past few years, YouTube has devoted significant resources to building sophisticated tools that allow musicians and filmmakers to automatically find and flag users who pirate their creations. One of the worst impressions you can give a prospective subscriber is to have a trailer or video feed full of blank spaces with the notice, “This video has been removed because its content violated YouTube’s Terms of Service.”