From Ideation to Monetization: The Process of Launching a Successful Video Channel [INFOGRAPHIC]

By Dirk Lueth


Planning, creating, and launching a successful online video channel takes a lot of hard work. For dedicated filmmakers, creators, and new media entrepreneurs, it’s also incredibly rewarding!

Gbox created the following infographic to help both aspiring and established video content creators launch and grow a successful video channel. From ideation to monetization of your video channel, we’ve got you covered!

The Process of Launching a Successful Video Channel

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Step 1: Determine Your Angle

    • Figure out the goal you’re trying to achieve with your video channel. Is it educating viewers? Entertaining them? Showing them a new way to do something? Exposing them to something they otherwise would not have known about?
    • Once you know what you’re trying to accomplish, you need to determine what the best angle for reaching that goal will be:
      • Does a short film make the most sense, or will an ongoing series of shorter videos deliver your message in a more impactful way?
      • Will you create a documentary around a current issue or world event?
      • Will you develop an animated series or vlogging channel?
      • Are how-to videos your best option?
      • What about guided or in-depth tutorials?

In order to make evangelists of your viewers, part of your decision should revolve around the “why” behind a viewer’s reason to share your content:
making your video viral

    • Determine what about your videos will give them social currency, and continue to develop your angle around that:
      • For example, video trailers/open access videos are heavy with social currency. They are short, easily consumed, quickly shared, and give your audience a reason to start a social conversation.
      • Keep in mind that shorter “chunks” of serialized content allow users to have a lot more opportunities to view than long-form content does. Additionally, it’s easier to creating ongoing content and justify subscriptions in shorter, serialized video channel formats.
    • Think about your favorite online video creators and how they structure their content. What can you learn from them about delivery, style, strategy, etc.

Step 2: Get to Know Your Audience

    • Understanding your audience inside and out is key to growing your video subscriber base.
    • Think about the types of viewers who will get the most out of engaging with your video content. What do they receive from viewing their content (knowledge, delight, laughter, etc)? What other types of content do they generally engage with?
    • Use Facebook Audience Insights, Twitter Audience Insights, Google Audience data, and more to gather demographic and behavioral information on your current and future audience members.
      google analytics demographics
      facebook audience insights
    • Remember: Even though your current audience might be small, it’s still likely to be statistically significant, and allows you to hone your message, target your production and focus your marketing and socialization efforts.
    • The goal is to understand what your audience likes, what they don’t like, and what will ultimately keep them coming back to your video channel.

Step 3: Create Killer Video Content

    • The best online video content starts with a sound strategy, which will drive nearly all other aspects of the production and promotion (what you create, how you create it, who’s it for, and how it gets to those people).
      • Developing a strategy upfront will help keep you organized, from your b-roll to your metadata. Planning keeps your killer video content focused and on schedule.
    • Focus on two main areas: Quality and Consistency.
      • “Quality” doesn’t have to mean “expensive.” It means creating the best videos (visually, production-wise, etc.) that you can with what you have.
      • “Consistency” means sticking to a regular creation and publishing schedule, which will go a long way in building a loyal following.Silhouette of filmmaker shooting
    • Determine where you will host your main videos. For this, you have several options, and what you choose will strongly influence how you execute Step 4 (Distribute, Market and Monetize). You may prefer a platform with a large, built-in audience in exchange for limited audience ownership and business model inflexibility. Or, you may prefer a platform that allows lots of flexibility and audience ownership, and the utilities necessary to build and maintain your own audience. Or, you may utilize some combination of both. The options for creators are numerous, and can generally be broken down as follows:

      • Big brand subscription platforms (Netflix, Hulu, Vessel, etc),
      • Subscription service on your own web destination (Vimeo, Gbox, etc),
      • Per-asset options (Amazon,  iTunes, etc)
      • Ad-supported options (Youtube, Brightcove, etc)
    • You may also benefit from utilizing free-only video platforms for your promotional content (Vine, Instagram, etc.), but take care that you don’t set the expectation for your brand that your content is free in general.

Step 4: Distribute, Market, and Monetize Your Video Content

    • Develop a solid distribution plan that leverages your existing social media channels and possibly some paid outlets as well.
    • Marketing and promotion of your content is critical in the early stages of your video channel. Work to connect with influencers, form strategic partnerships, and leverage technology (for example, embed codes) to get your video seen in as many places as possible.video distribution and marketing
    • Take a look at what some other creators are charging for similar content. What can you learn from them?
    • The million dollar question: how will you make money from your videos? There are several ways to monetize your videos, so a bit of experimentation with the following may be your best bet in order to find what works best for you and your audience:
      • Pay per video
      • Pay what you want
      • Subscriptions
      • Sponsorships
      • Fundraising
      • Rentals
      • Season passes
      • Micropayments
      • Advertising
      • Freemium
    • Ultimately, if you want to be supported and incentivized to create more work on an ongoing basis, the recurring subscription option is what you should aim for with your audience. There’s no easier way to run a business than to have ongoing revenue you can plan on.

Step 5: Connect with Your Audience and Ask for Feedback

    • Follower/subscriber connections are key to your video channel’s success. Without it, your audience will consist of many one-and-done viewers with nothing much to show for your efforts. Focus on developing a relationship with your viewers!
    • Ask your audience for their feedback – OFTEN! Creating an “open door policy” around honest feedback will give you valuable insights into the minds of your viewers. Use this information to refine and improve your video channel.
      • This serves two purposes – the valuable feedback on your content, and making yourself part of your brand’s offering to your audience.
        building your video audience
    • Referring to other videos you’ve made directly in the content, inviting comments, and providing additional information in the video description are great ways to connect with viewers and get some feedback.

Step 6: Reinvest in Your Video Channel and Continue to Grow

    • Once you start seeing a steady stream of followers (and income) from your videos, consider reinvesting some of your profits into your video channel. This might mean:
      • Increase the cadence of new content creation. The more content you generate, the more mindshare you’ll build with your audience.
      • Upgrading your camera, lighting, props, editing software, and other equipment.
      • Increasing your marketing budget to expand the reach of your videos.
    • As you establish yourself in your niche, continue to reach out to larger potential partners to increase your potential reach.

invest_in_your_video_channel

    • Consider diversifying your video content, experimenting with different filming techniques, and testing some “outside the box” ideas in order to expand your reach beyond your current viewer base.
    • Don’t be afraid to ask for help. There is a strong community of talented filmmakers and new media entrepreneurs who you can connect and collaborate with.
    • Be persistent. Building a successful video takes time and patience, and very few content creators go “mega viral”, and even when they do, far fewer are positioned to capitalize effectively on it. Develop a formula that works for you and your audience, stick to a schedule, and establish yourself as as new media entrepreneur over time.

Connect with Gbox on Facebook and Twitter or with Dirk Lueth directly for more insights into how to make video content work for you!


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