YouTube is reportedly paying some of the top content creators on the platform up to six figures to promote new features on the platform. YouTube has not stated who they pay, but the amount they pay almost certainly means the top channels are involved.
This article will discuss some of the features that YouTube is promoting, why they are promoting these features, and what this means for the future of video sharing platforms.
What features are they promoting?
YouTube is paying these content creators to promote a few different important and new features. Some of these include paid subscriptions, pinned comments, and a new merchandise program. These features almost relate to the streaming part of YouTube.
YouTube has seen the success of the paid subscription model that Twitch uses and they have modeled their program after it. Basically, this model involves viewers paying their favorite streamers a monthly fee to subscribe to their channel.
The streamers then receive the majority of this money with YouTube taking a small percentage. Paid subscribers can also get other perks such as exclusive content and special chatrooms with the streamer. This mostly depends on the bonuses that the streamer wants to offer. More valuable bonuses will mean more paid subscribers for the streamer.
Pinned comments are another feature that YouTube is copying from Twitch. On Twitch, users can purchase the ability to have their comment appear at the top of the chat log. This guarantees them that the entire audience will see the comments and the streamer may even see it.
Again, the streamer receives some of the money from the pinned comment with the rest going to YouTube. Streamers can easily promote this feature by mentioning it during their stream. They can go a step further and say that they’ll read any of the pinned comments in their chat log.
The final feature that YouTube is promoting is the merchandise program. This program allows select streamers to open a merchandise store directly on their channel.
They can sell t-shirts, hats, and pillowcases from their store. Again, YouTube does a revenue share with this program. However, it provides an excellent way for streamers to solidify their brand while diversifying their income stream. This feature will most likely become one of the most popular features for YouTube streamers to utilize.
Most live streaming platforms are notorious for making streamers sign exclusive contracts. This means that the streamers can only upload content to the platform.
YouTube is changing the trend. One of their new features allows for YouTubers to upload content to any platform. The only requirement is that they must first upload videos to YouTube.
This allows content creators to really diversify their income streams – an especially important strategy with how much YouTube likes to demonetize videos and ban channels.
What is the Community Tab?
Many YouTubers that have been on the platform for years do not know how to access the Community tab or what it does.
Basically, the Community tab is YouTube’s replacement for the Discussion tab. The Discussion tab was an area for anyone to discuss topics on a YouTube channel. It was basically a wall where anyone could post a comment.
Now, the Discussion tab was just a comment section. The only thing that could be posted as plain text comments, which did not allow for much discussion. Most of the discussion was just normal spam. This is why YouTube decided to revamp this tab with the Community tab.
The Community tab allows all kinds of different comments, which makes it much more fun to use and much more useful for the channel operator. For instance, the creator can post text, GIFs, links, and images to the Community tab. YouTube modeled the experience after the Facebook wall so that you can expect something similar to that. Subscribers can also respond to these status updates with plain text comments, and they can like the posts, but they cannot post images or links.
This tab is not available to all YouTube channels. It is still in the beginning phases, and YouTube is placing it only on select channels that have over 10,000 subscribers. You can expect YouTube to lower this number as time passes. This could be YouTube’s push to compete with Facebook video and eventually become more of a social network.
If you already have access to the Community tab, then you can utilize the following tips to help you get the most benefit from the tab.
Promote Your Community Tab in Videos
YouTube is still known as a video sharing platform, which means that most users will not expect a discussion board on the channel. Plus, most discussion occurs in the comments.
This is why you should promote the Community tab at the middle or end of your video. However, merely mentioning that you have a Community tab is not going to get many people to visit it. You must make the experience great for people to visit.
This means that you should post consistent updates and reply to comments. Eventually, people will start to move their general discussion to the Community tab instead of the comment section. This is great because only subscribers can comment on your status updates.
Remind Viewers to Receive Notifications
Most YouTubers will remind their viewers to subscribe to their channel. However, most YouTubers do not encourage their viewers to receive notifications about their channel updates.
You can easily do this by telling them to click the bell icon next to the subscribe button. This will then alert them to any updates on your Community tab, which will get them to your channel.
Have a Creed
The first post on your Community tab should tell your visitors exactly what to expect. This can help to build a strong community and can get people interested in the tab.
You do not want to have a series of random posts on your tab, which will just confuse new visitors and make them click away. Fortunately, creating a creed is easy because you can write a remarkable post and then sticky that post. This means that everyone will see that post and hopefully they will read it.
Have a Q&A
A question and answer session on the Community tab is a great way to get people using the platform. Viewers will often want to ask their favorite YouTuber questions, which means that these can get very popular if you have enough fans.
Plus, many people will visit it to see the Q&A, but they may see another post they like and decide to continue visiting the tab.
Promote Your Videos
You can use the tab to promote your videos. Now, most of the people that visit the tab will already be subscribers that watch your videos, but you can still promote the video. Remember, many users have hundreds of subscribers, and your video will often get lost in all the videos.
This means that promoting your video from a few different places is important.
Promote Your Products
This is the most utilized part of the Community tab. Most YouTubers will use it to market products at some point and it is a great place to do it. People will get a notification and then see the product, which means that the impressions will be high.
However, you do not want to promote products all the time. If you do, then people will eventually tune out your notifications. Use the Community tab for promotion in low doses; otherwise, you could see a negative impact. In fact, many YouTubers suggest using it for product promotion only once per month. This still allows you to promote products but does not create advertising fatigue.
Interact with your viewers
The Community tab really is a great place to interact with your viewers. You can do a Q&A as mentioned earlier, but you can do all kinds of other great techniques to interact with them as well.
One excellent interaction method is setting up a poll about something in a video, which will increase engagement. The poll results can also be used to create more engaging content. Other examples include clarifying a point from a video or even asking for fan suggestions for your next video.
The possibilities for interacting with viewers with the Community tab are endless. The only limitation is really your creativity.
Why are they promoting features?
The biggest question people ask is, “Why does YouTube pay people to promote features?”
It’s a good question too. Honestly, paying content creators to promote features seems like a pointless endeavor. However, the reason YouTube does this is not so viewers notice the features. YouTube knows that everyone copies the most popular content creators. Therefore, if a popular content creator is promoting the merchandise store, then the rest of the community will rush to use that program.
This only answers one part of the question though. The other reason they are promoting these features is that YouTube is currently losing market share to Twitch.tv and other streaming exclusive platforms. Promoting monetization features that they offer is a way to show that they are serious about courting the top content creators to YouTube.
Overall, promoting these different monetization methods is YouTube’s way of showing that they too can compete with Twitch.
Will YouTube take over the video game streaming industry?
So, YouTube is doing all this work to take over the streaming industry. However, will it work?
Honestly, no one knows. YouTube has a few things going for it. It has a very high brand recognition amongst the general population and it is a popular platform. Furthermore, YouTube is the second most popular website in America. Most Americans have probably watched a YouTube video. On the contrary, most Americans do not know anything about Twitch. This popularity allows YouTube to promote their streaming services to their massive audience of video viewers.
However, brand recognition is not exclusively positive amongst content creators. It is actually quite bad. Demonetizing channels for no particular reason has strained YouTube’s reputation in the streaming community. Many content creators have been banned or had their channels demonetized, and fled to other platforms. Not to mention that YouTube has a reputation for having the least amount of monetization. Convincing content creators that YouTube now offers decent monetization will be a difficult task.
Final Thoughts on YouTube Paying Content Creators
YouTube has a lot of negative stigmas to overcome if it wants to become the leading streaming service on the internet. Paying content creators to promote videos is a step in the right direction to change the image of the popular platform.
Adding the same monetization options that the competition offers is not enough to draw people to the platform though. If YouTube wants to truly dominate the industry, then they must design their own unique monetization options. Further, they must provide some form of guarantee that content creators will not have their monetization options randomly remove.
If YouTube cannot do the points listed above, then they face major obstacles to their aim to become the leading video website on the internet.