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Earn money on YouTube

Posted by Annplugged on January 27, 2007

Goo(g)d news. Soon you will start generating money on YouTube.

How soon? We don’t know. But Chad Hurley announced at World Economic Forum, Davos on 27 Jan that they would reward users for self-generated content, saying “We are getting an audience large enough where we have an opportunity to support creativity, to foster creativity through sharing revenue with our users.”

The idea is great, and I think it is a strong response to video sharing site Metacafé‘s challenge, where revenue sharing already started 3 months ago. Eyal Herzog, co-founder talked about it Digital Life Design conference (DLD07) on Jan 22, so it was only 5 days ago that I aired my criticism “How come YouTube seems to be unresponsive? Can they really be that comfortable in the stregthening competition? Lots of national video sites are mushrooming suddenly. Not only is GooTube lagging behind in building communities, and financially rewarding producers, it is also painfully low-performer regarding technology.”

Of course, it may have been originally timed to be announced at Davos forum, but it may also have been that many of the people at DLD07 in Munich also participated in Davos, and realized that Metacafé is very competitive, and is threatening to take away those precious eyeballs (already boasting 500.000.000 video downloads a month!)

How are they going to define self-generated? What will be the business model?

Will they copy Metacafé in the CPM based earnings? (5 USD/ thousand views) or will it be a more complex calculation including (on top of CPM or CPC)

  • viral effect: loads of inbound links from other blogs, and web pages
  • number of comments
  • number of video responses
  • number of shares (CPA)
  • number of times favorited
  • number of subscriptions, or the monthly growth on it

There are several factors that could be included potentially. How to make it simple?

Metacafé simplified it in the following way:

Metacafé, earned revenue from UGC“Producers get 5 USD/ CPM (a thousand views) if the total number of views go over 20.000 (Are you a producer? Just log in, and see how much you have earned. ” (Eyal Hertzog)

For YouTube, the good news is that Google AdSense payment model makes it easier to switch into the new business model and send money to content providers. Or even better, that they can count on the excellent technology of YouTube, (pardon my French) Google.

PS: the top earner on Metacafé, is not a simple user but a company: Reel Stunts Action Team, with several candidate films, but only one that generated all that 25.000 USD.

Update: Thanks to Philipp Lenssen and Tony Ruscoe for posting it on Google Blogoscoped.


Posted in AdSense, clips, DLD07, Google, Google Video, Metacafé, Monetizing, Video, YouTube | Leave a Comment »

How is Google generating revenue on YouTube?

Posted by Annplugged on January 26, 2007

Marissa Mayer’s answer is ‘we don’t know, we are still experimenting.’ (Digital, Life, Design conference, Munich: DLD07)

On Jan 25 2006 the first step towards actually integrating YouTube into Google’s products was taken: if you make a search query on Google Video, you’ll see loads of YouTube shots.

Liz Gannes on NewTeeVee is asking why is it worth running two video sites? (“why take a sidetrip to a search engine when you’ll end up on YouTube anyway?”)

In my opinion, that’s why:

As for running two sites (one for YouTube and one for Google video search): I think it is totally reasonable and profitable.

  • Reason 1: they have different profiles, roles, images as defined by Google (as Salar Kamangar put it, one for content the other for search – the options in AdWords)
  • Reason 2: with two brands you have more scope for experimenting
  • Reason 3: the combination of the above two

From the user’s point of view:

On YouTube you accidentally ‘stumble upon’ and interact

On Google video search you purposefully search and spend no time on socializing

From the media point of view:

YouTube functions as a content site of Google’s content network with a distinct community and with more scope for applying, testing various ad formats. And these tests, mind you, will be less affecting Google brand, as YouTube is separate. So video shots interrupted by an ad on YouTube will not clash with Google’s aim to ‘enhance user experience,’ because it is not Google. Being intrusive on YouTube while ‘finding out how to reduce being intrusive to the minimum’ works on the YouTube brand better and safer.

How they are carrying out video ads is absolutely an exciting question. When Marissa Mayer was asked about it at Digital Life Design conference (DLD07) in Munich, she said they are experimenting and gathering data, feedback, etc. on what works best. See: (day: Jan 23, The Billion Dollar Bubble). “There are lots of different business models… Maybe it means the user needs pay directly for the service, maybe it means advertisers will pay more…advertisers are good at valuing those eyeballs.” i.e. Advertisers will say how much it is worth them (even bidding?)

It is baffling though why haven’t they improved the searches (awful results pages, no need to describe them). Also, why haven’t they tried to experiment with dividing YouTube into two main columns as they do on Google search results pages: one column for organic video search and one for sponsored videos with bid management – based on similar principles to search algorithm.

But maybe this division is coming on Google video search – which, as a separate site, is of course worth being kept, if it works as an aggregator, and it will work as an aggregator indexing all sources they can/ are allowed to – with no social networking features, focusing on search, and potentially, with a differentiated method of generating ad revenue. One thing is sure, however, based on Google’s policy, I think it is out of question that Google could afford to be a biased video search engine – users’ trust is their biggest asset (besides lava lamps). So there is no way that they could push YouTube videos ahead of videos hosted on other sites.


Posted in AdSense, advertising, Adwords, clips, Google, Google Video, Monetizing, search, Video, YouTube | 3 Comments »

Lonelygirl15 from Miles Beckett at DLD07 conference

Posted by Annplugged on January 23, 2007

Part 3 of the Vlogging program at DLD07 is about the creator of lonelygirl15: Miles Beckett (a surgeon turned vlog-director, a remark in brackets no journalist would forget to add, neither blogger).

If you do not know what lonelygirl15 is, go to youtube and you will find more uploads about her than about JFK, Tony Blair etc. The main point is that for quite a long time viewers thought that she was a real person sharing her thoughts with the great public, asking for help, talking about her relationship with her boyfriend, etc. She turned out to be a fictional character springing out of Miles Beckett’s head. Or is it the main point? Or is it more important that

  • Miles checked out what was popular on youtube and chose his theme accordingly (OK, could have been lonelypet2month if you ask me, but Miles hasn’t contacted me for ideas)
  • The mini soap opera series started on June 12 2006, already on July 4 a lonelygirl15 monolog attracted half a million users within 24 hours. So the time for success was there within 3 weeks. Was it coming free? Not in a sense of free time: lonelygirl15 was acting as a real member of the community, actively participating in youtube life, like commenting on other people’s videos, thus calling attention to herself and her problematic life. Miles did not talk about it, but there must have been certain preferences for picking the hubs in youtube. How many hours per day have they spent on it in those 3 weeks is another question. Finally, what sort of contribution was it? I guess more than a ‘nice post, thank you XY’ which is so typical of linkhunters merely placing their linktraps for cathcing eyeballs. etc.
  • They also have their own website now – so they have an independent site to monetize in addition to youtube.
  • (and here comes the most important bit): Miles does not intend to go ahead simply with the lonelygirl tributes, he is actually trying to mash up the video series with social networking. He is trying to discover what online video communication is capable of. How? For instance, they are encouraging viewers, or rather, fans to contribute to the story with their own ideas, whether it is on the forum, or in a video response format. There are four characters now, and one of them was announced to check out the chatroom at, let’s say, 6 o’clock Pacific time. ‘Was announced’ is not a good wording though: what in fact happened was that the fictional character acting as a real person, plagued by real problems wrote to the visitors of lonelygrillgirl15 site that ‘I dunno what to do, but at 6 o’clock Pacific time I will go to the chat room.” So (s)he was asking for advice, and fans were eager to share: “servers crashed in fact…,” says Miles.
  • Anyway, the fan-base is very-very interactive, there are 500-1000 comments per shot. Soap opera fans react very emotionally, e.g. they warn the characters what not to do (that reminds me of kids shouting to Little Red Riding Hood ‘the wolf is behind the bush’, and of moments when fans are actually raising money to save fictional lives. The good news is that we can get closer to a fictional existence to raise money for non-fictional people – like the guy who raised money for a new apple powerbook (!). Maybe the hundred dollar laptop campaign could use such fictional elements? Where is the limit?
  • LG15 is still the number one on youtube, states Miles. There are about 1-1.5 million users/week: continuously. Despite the fact, that it turned out that lonelygirl15 is an invented, edited teenager. In fact, as it usually goes with publicity, the number of viewers, and more importantly, the number of ardent fans has increased manifold. A question for Miles: have they ever used product placement in the monologs? How exactly are they monetizing this endless program of heartfelt bedroom intimacy while preserving its ‘authenticity’?
  • No copyright problems, no lurking litigation. Fans are actually encouraged to download the sequel, and make their own versions (Why not encouraged by other soap operas from TV companies? Can they react really so slowly? Have you heard about other TV series/serials building on viewers participation?)

Recommended article on the project in Wired magazine.

Posted in DLD07, Video | Leave a Comment »

Video abundance, Mobuzz goes for mobile snippets (DLD07 conference)

Posted by Annplugged on January 23, 2007

(Great, laptop battery is vigorous again.)

MoBuzz TV was founded 2 years ago, with the aim to provide good video content for mobile devices. 2 years ago, however, the bunch of operators in Europe weren’t ready with 3G, so Anil de Mello, CEO & producer of MobuzzTV, decided to put their video spots on the web. Today they attract 4.5 million viewers on a monthly basis. They have had major campaigns with Levi’s, Adidas, Disney etc. So it seems they are a lot more profit-oriented vlog (video blog) than RocketBoom, which is not only enjoying viral hype, but also features somewhat poor content. I am eager to check out more stuff on MoBuzz as the scenes with Karin (show hostess, so to say) were truly enjoyable (sharing statistics like ‘Apple is for the geriatric of tech geeks’).

So what do they cover? Several areas for young/ youngish/ still youngish consumers interested in technology, business trends and entertainment, and not only in English and Spanish, but soon in German, Dutch and French, too. The blog posts a new 2-4 minute video every day (recorded in Madrid, Spain), which you can download directly from MoBuzz, from itunes, etc. So far they have produced some 1200 shows (multiplied by 2 minutes, you get 2400 min, i.e. 40 hour content).

Do they take on training their audience how to make video content? Well, there is no training but they do encourage viewers to send in their material (mind you, no financial award for that unlike at Metacafe). Anil’s example: make an interview with your neighbour what he/she thinks about PlayStation. 🙂

Posted in DLD07, Video | Leave a Comment »

Google AdWords Training on YouTube?

Posted by Annplugged on October 10, 2006

So now if training, let’s see what YouTube offers on AdWords tips and tricks. I am truly disappointed that free trainings are only available in the US, you lucky ones over the sea…) 🙂

As Inside AdWords says “The first round of AdWords Seminars will be offered in select cities: Los Angeles, San Mateo, Chicago, New York City, Miami, and Boston.” But they also call the attention to the continuation of the series for which updates are available by filling out a form
So back to YouTube, is there any long distance course? Well, the first trial for ‘AdWords training’ keywords was unsuccessful:

Video results for ‘adwords training’ No Videos found for ‘adwords training’
OK, let’s check ‘seminar’ The result is the same: Video results for ‘adwords seminar’ No Videos found for ‘adwords seminar’ All right (sigh). What about SEM training? Pops up 6 hits, but sadly enough, probably the closest one is ‘Boeing extreme landing training’ (maybe to do with landing pages)

How about search engines? That’s it! Promising list, good stuff just by the look of it: mostly SEO stuff (not overviewed clips, even if a guy called SageRock re/appears on almost every page uploaded by himself), then more popular stuff like the bizarre commercial for the Japanese search engine and another for Google Brain Talk search engine (the futuristic Google), one for a somewhat weak comedy entitled Ernest the search engine but at least it is short, and event snippets like the short recording on 2006 SES conference and the Google Dance.

I expect Google will not miss out on publishing the free AdWords course to let others get close to the know-how. will they? Oh, and a bit of foolproof tagging should help a lot. For me, definitely.

Posted in advertising, Adwords, clips, Course, Google, Google Adwords, search, Search Engines, search strategies, SEM, SEO, statistics, Training, Video, YouTube | 1 Comment »

Marathon clips on YouTube

Posted by Annplugged on October 10, 2006

Checking out YouTube, (now nicknamed GooTube, yet keeping its own identity and all the 67 people), is getting a regular spot during the day. I bumped into marathon clips, which confused me at first. I thought the upper limit is 10 minutes, hard and fast rule. Yet many programming session can be found that exceed 2 hours, 3 hours and even 4 hours. So how can it be? I thought Google changed the name of the game, but it turns out it is not irregularity, on the contrary:

How long can my video be?
Most videos on YouTube are under five minutes long. There is a 10-minute length limit (unless you have a Director account). Longer videos require more compression to fit in the 100MB size limit, and the quality will go down as the length of the video goes up.

So I guess 3DBuzz has such an account for their 2 and a half hour long Delphi training sessions. No problem with the quality either (at least for educational purposes).

Posted in clips, Google, marathon, Training, Video, YouTube | Leave a Comment »