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Achieving success on YouTube demands that creators produce engaging, high-quality content for viewers to enjoy. That recipe has helped thousands of YouTubers to earn six, seven, and eight-figure incomes. The number of channels earning $100,000+ proves that YouTube is a viable way to earn a living.
Video, audio, and editing tools are essential to make videos. Those tools enable creation and production processes. I use Camtasia, which is a video editor and screen recorder application. YouTube offers a basic video editor, and there are many free and paid video editing applications including:
- Filmora Video Editor
- HitFilm Express
- AVS Video Editor
- Adobe Premiere
- Pinnacle Studio
- Final Cut Pro (Mac only)
- Sony Vegas Pro
Video editing software and recording equipment are only half of the battle. You must also understand YouTube’s search engine for optimization purposes (SEO), analytics, marketing, branding, channel management, and monetization to succeed. Here are several tools, services, and resources to help you in those areas.
YouTube Certified Tools
TubeBuddy’s browser extension adds a layer of functionality on top of YouTube’s website. Its features enhance productivity, workflow, SEO, promotion, analytics, and more. Some of the many things you can do with TubeBuddy are:
- Track your video rankings, and your competitors, across YouTube and Google search
- Copy and paste video keywords and tags and understand which ones rank the highest
- Split test titles, thumbnails, tags, and descriptions to find what works best for channel growth and performance
- Quickly find demonetized videos on your channel then bulk submit them for manual review
- Make bulk updates to your videos including description contents
- Schedule unlisted videos for publishing and for playlist inclusion
- Schedule videos to be hidden and removed from playlists
- Create professional quality thumbnails using still frames from your video and text/image overlays
- Promote one of your videos in the descriptions of all your other videos
- Reach out to your YouTube subscribers across multiple social networks
vidIQ is the first YouTube audience development and management suite that helps individuals, brands, networks, and agencies grow their channels, views, and subscribers. Its end-to-end solution includes analytics and reporting, YouTube SEO, influencer identification, comment management, and competitive intelligence tools. vidIQ’s professional services include brand strategy and channel optimization. vidIQ’s free Vision Chrome extension enables you to:
- See video and homepage keywords and tags used by others
- Review search term metrics such as views and keyword scores
- Track character counts for your titles, descriptions, and tags
- Manage, copy, and paste tags from one video to the next
- Get a snapshot of YouTube, Facebook, and engagement metrics for the top search results
- Get comprehensive channel statistics in a single panel
YouTube Tutorials, Insights, & Tips
YouTube Creator Hub and Academy
The YouTube Creator Hub is a destination for resources to help you make great videos, find your audience, and grow your channel. The Creator Academy has a vast catalog of tutorials to challenge and inspire your creativity. The lessons will give you the inside scoop on how to shoot and edit amazing videos. Also, there is a YouTube channel featuring tips and tricks. It’s an excellent place to learn about all things YouTube channel development.
Tubefilter is a source for online video news, analysis, and events. Through its trade news, community events, and creator advocacy programs, it has helped to foster the growth, promotion, and legitimization of a new, independent professional entertainment industry. Of note is its post, Reverse Engineering The YouTube Algorithm, which covers YouTube’s video distribution model. I highly recommend reading that article.
Tubular Insights (formerly ReelSEO) is a leading resource for analysis, tips, and trends for the online video and internet marketing industries. It’s the only company that tracks all video content cross-platform, all-device, and globally. It offers expert advice and commentary to guide internet marketers and video content producers.
Tubebuddy has launched a blog that will feature product updates, YouTube news, industry expert guest posts, and a whole lot more. The blog “was born in order to give us a place to be human.”
YouTube SEO, Keywords, & Tags
YouTube isn’t just about unboxing videos; it’s the second largest search engine on the web, behind Google. I often search and watch how-to videos anytime I want to know something about WordPress.
Like Google, appearing on the first page of YouTube search results is critical to attracting clicks and views. So far, I have done quite well to get many of my videos listed on the first and second pages of results. To rank well requires knowledge of YouTube SEO factors. However, it’s critical to understand SEO in its entirety, and I recommend several SEO tutorials and courses. Also, you can visit SEJ for its advanced guide to YouTube SEO. Tools for YouTube SEO and keyword research include the following:
Google Keyword Planner
Keyword Planner is available through Google Ads, an online advertising service. While it was created to support ad campaign planning and research, many people use it to search for keywords and understand how keywords might perform. You can find new keyword ideas for your videos that are relevant to your brand, product, service, and target audience. Keyword Planner will show you historical statistics such as keyword search volume data and competitiveness. Users can target keywords by geographical location, for example, countries, territories, regions, and cities. Furthermore, users can customize results by date, seasonal trends, and device.
SEMrush offers a keyword tool that is driven by its massive dataset of search data from 26 countries. SEMrush provides keyword ideas, rankings, estimated search volumes, estimated CPC, and difficulty scores.
Keyword Tool scrapes and suggests keyword ideas for Google, YouTube, Bing, Amazon, and other prominent search engines. It allows you to select the country and language that you want to use for keyword generation. It will reveal 750+ long-tail keywords from YouTube autocomplete by appending and prepending the term that you specify with various letters and numbers.
YouTube’s Autocomplete Feature
As you type into YouTube’s search engine, you will see suggested search terms and queries. Those suggestions indicate that users are looking for videos and information on those topics.
YouTube autocomplete, like Google autocomplete, was created to make the user experience better and more efficient. It helps users to find videos faster by recommending appropriate keywords as they start typing in their search queries. I use this method frequently to brainstorm ideas for videos and content.
Channel Data & Analytics
YouTube Analytics provides real-time metrics and reports. Reports are grouped into three buckets, that is, revenue, watch time, and interaction. There is some overlap between YouTube Analytics and Google Analytics (GA), but GA is arguably better for measuring your offsite marketing activities and external traffic. Those platforms combined will give you a comprehensive view of your channel’s performance.
Google Analytics is a free web service that provides statistics for website management and performance. If you’re new to Google Analytics, I recommend taking Google’s official course for beginners. You can link your channel to Google Analytics to better understand your traffic sources and results.
Social Blade compiles data from YouTube, Twitter, Twitch, Daily Motion, Mixer, and Instagram and uses the data to make statistical graphs and charts that track progress and growth. It includes information such as estimated earnings and future projections, providing both numerical data and easy-to-read graphs. Statistics are freely available to anyone using its website or smartphone apps.
Live Subscriber Count
Live Subscriber Count is a free tool that displays your channel’s subscriber count in real-time. You can adjust the color of the Live Subscriber Count to match your channel and add sound. Some creators make it visible to live viewers to encourage channel subscriptions.
Vidooly helps online video publishers, advertisers, media companies, and agencies to succeed in digital video across all platforms through its best-in-class insights. Its products include YouTube and Facebook analytics, audience and market insights, benchmarketing, content acquisition and strategy, and more.
YouTube Subscriber Counter (YTSC) is a free tool for YouTube creators, YouTube fans, and companies to track real-time YouTube channel analytics.
Monetization & Funding
Google AdSense is a service run by Google that allows publishers to serve automatic text, image, video, and interactive media advertisements, that are targeted at viewers. Ads are administered, sorted, and maintained by Google. Publishers can generate revenue on either a per-click or per-impression basis.
YouTube earnings are added to your AdSense payments page before the 15th of each month and included in your payment if your total earnings exceed the payment threshold. However, your estimated AdSense earnings will not include your YouTube earnings. Alternatively, revenue reports are available in the YouTube Studio on the Analytics tab.
YouTube Super Chat
Super Chat is a way for fans and creators to interact through live streams. Fans can purchase Super Chats to highlight their messages within the live chat stream. Super Chats stand out from other messages in two ways, i.e., by color highlight and position. The color of your Super Chat, the period it stays pinned, and the maximum message length are determined by the purchase amount.
YouTube Channel Memberships
Channel memberships allow viewers to join your channel through monthly recurring payments. Subscribers get members-only perks like badges, emoji, and other items of your choosing. Program eligibility starts at 50,000 subs plus other criteria.
Patreon is a way to get paid for creating the things you already create (videos, songs, whatevs, etc.). Fans pledge a few bucks per month or item released, and the money goes to the creator. It doesn’t matter where creators create content, for example, on YouTube, Vimeo, and SoundCloud.
Social Media Management Tools
Agorapulse is a social media management tool for Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube. Users can engage, publish, listen, and measure their social media activities across networks. Agorapulse offers free tools and plans for individuals and businesses. Regarding YouTube, you can manage comments, recycle common replies, and receive alerts when your brand is mentioned.
Hootsuite is the most widely used social media management and marketing tool. Users can schedule, publish, curate, monitor, and analyze their social media activities for Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, YouTube, WordPress, and more. It has multiple plans including free, pro, business, and enterprise. Regarding YouTube, you can upload, edit, schedule, share, manage, measure, and analyze your videos across your social networks.
Royalty-Free Music for Your Videos
YouTube’s audio library, accessible through the YouTube Studio, enables you to browse and download free music for your projects. Other free and premium royalty-free sites include:
Thumbnail Design & Freelancers
Thumbnails are crucial to capturing the attention of viewers and increasing click-through rates. You can create thumbnails yourself with free design tools or outsource to freelance graphic designers.
There are hundreds of freelancers on Fiverr to help you with your graphic design and other YouTube needs. Fiverr is the world’s largest marketplace for digital services starting at just five dollars. Check out its top YouTube gigs.
Canva enables you to design presentations, social media graphics, and more with thousands of beautiful layouts. Enrich your chosen snapshot with text and design elements or create a clean-cut thumbnail design for your video.
Pixlr is a fantastic photo editor for all your editing needs. You gain full control over your images including layers and effects. Its web apps are powerful and provide an array of photo editing options to make your photos beautiful. Pixlr is an excellent alternative to Adobe Photoshop.
Remove.bg is a free service to remove the background of any photo. Just upload any image and the site will automatically identify any people in it, cut around the foreground, and let you download a PNG of your subject with a transparent background.
YouTube Video Transcription Software
3Play Media provides closed captioning, transcription, and audio description services to make video accessibility easy.
Trint is a text-based toolkit for transcribing, searching, editing, and sharing media content online.
Other YouTube Channel Building Tools
Many YouTubers shorten links to keep their description sections tidy. Hootsuite (ow.ly) and Bitly (bit.ly) are two popular services.
Grammar, Spelling, & Punctuation
I use Grammarly to check my YouTube titles and descriptions for errors. Grammarly is free and comes highly recommended.
TubeBuddy, vidIQ, Hootsuite, and Socialblade are available in the Chrome Web Store. Those extensions are excellent and much better than one-off tools like Tags for YouTube.
If you have a Facebook page, there are a couple of apps to help you promote your YouTube channel and videos. YouTube Tab app and Woobox are fantastic options.
Channel development apps are few and hard to find on Google Play and Apple app stores. What you’ll mostly see are video creation and editing apps such as Flipagram and VivaVideo. Your best bet for channel management is YouTube’s Creator Studio app, which makes it fast and easy to manage your channel on the go. Its features include:
- Monitor channel and video performance with robust analytics
- Filter and respond to comments
- Get notifications when something important happens
- Update video details and monetization settings
- Manage playlists
Do you know of other amazing YouTube tools or apps? Contact me on LinkedIn with your suggestion.