The following is a guest column by Josef Holm, the founder and CEO of crowdfunding platform TubeStart.
As crowdfunding becomes more and more popular, it’s becoming clear that multimedia campaigns with compelling video are more likely to attract more attention or even investors.
And, increasingly, YouTube is an important channel for those campaigns. But, in order to translate YouTube viewers into active campaign donors, it is important that content creators utilize YouTube’s full capabilities and networks.
Below are six tips I’ve found helpful in my work in harnessing YouTube traffic for a crowdfunding campaign.
Tip 1: Export Your YouTube Subscribers to a Google+ Circle
From a crowdfunder’s perspective, this is one of the most exciting features that YouTube has released in awhile. It creates the ability to easily export your YouTube subscribers to a Google+ page circle and then contact and share updates with them on Google+. ReelSEO has a great step-by-step guide on how to connect your G+ page with your YouTube channel. Once your YouTube account is connected to your Google+ page, go here to get started.
Tip 2: Links through Annotations
Annotations on YouTube are simply text layers that can be placed anywhere in a video and be linked to an external page like your crowdfunding campaign. Setting this up takes some time, but once it’s done you can easily link directly to your crowdfunding campaign from all of your videos.
Tip 3: Link From Your Video Descriptions
This tip seems so simple, yet it’s easily forgotten. Link to your campaign page from as many video descriptions as possible, and especially from your pitch video(s). If your campaign URLs are long like most of them are, use a URL shortener (like Google’s at http://goo.gl/). Make sure you link to the campaign right at the beginning of the descriptions, so it can be seen above the fold.
Tip 4: Post Campaign Updates to Your YouTube Channel Feed
Keeping your subscribers on YouTube involved through your channel feed is another easy and effective way to keep your campaign in your subscribers’ minds. Don’t post more than once a day but also not less, and don’t forget that consistency is one of the main keys to a successful campaign.
Tip 5: Make Your Pitch Video Your Channel Trailer
For the duration of your crowdfunding campaign, you and your channel have to be in campaign mode. This includes making your pitch video your channel trailer to maximize exposure. YouTube places an increasing emphasis on channels, so having your pitch video right there will get you more exposure and traffic to your campaign. Make sure to use annotations in your pitch video that link directly to your campaign page as described in Step 2.
Tip 6: Ask Fellow YouTubers for a Shout out
Have any friends with YouTube channels — or see an influencer with common values? Don’t be shy to ask them for a shout out, links or annotations to your campaign. You’ll be surprised how much you’ll get simply by asking
Josef Holm is the founder and CEO of TubeStart, a crowdfunding platform designed specifically for YouTube content creators. TubeStart provides creators with three funding models, including subscription-based crowdfunding. In addition to being a successful internet entrepreneur and investor, Josef serves on the board of the industry’s leading crowdfunding association, the Crowdfunding Professional Association (CFPA) and speaks at leading technology conferences around the country.