YouTube is making it easier to market your video channel and to access features like live streaming. New options include embeddable channel subscription buttons for your own site and an analytics feature for identifying and tracking Top Fans. In addition, they announced the expansion of live streaming to all channels with at least 100 subscribers.
For those who are focused on their YouTube channel as a core asset, it's all good news though some features are in early beta and others are rolling out over the next few weeks.
Embeddable Channel Subscription Button
Late last month YouTube introduced the Subscribe Button for both free and paid channels:
"The YouTube Subscribe Button lets you add a one-click Subscribe button to any page. The button lets people subscribe to your YouTube channel without having to leave your site to either log in to YouTube or confirm their subscriptions."
"If the channel associated with the button is a paid subscription channel, the button links to the channel rather than subscribing users automatically."
Top Fans Analytics
Other options were announced at or in conjunction with this weekend's VidCon gathering including a new Top Fans analytics feature designed to allow YouTubers with over 5000 subscribers to track their "most influential or engaged fans" and find out more about them:
"Like most new features, in order to use Top Fans one has to link their Google+ account with YouTube, and once the accounts are synced, Top Fans will group these influential supporters in a separate Google+ circle. A YouTuber can then choose to send messages or share content with these special fans."
Live Streaming & Other Features
5000 subscribers is a big hurdle for a lot of bands on YouTube but other recently announced features are going to be more widely available including the ability to live stream on accounts with as few as 100 subscribers. Other features will be available to all accounts in good standing.
Features requiring no minimum subscribers include:
upload and choose thumbnails
add annotations for linking to external stores and other websites
create playlists of related videos
While YouTube will continue to provide special features for bigger fish, the playing field has now become a bit more even for those in the earlier stages of growing their video channels.
Hypebot Senior Contributor Clyde Smith (@fluxresearch/@crowdfundingm) also blogs at Flux Research and Crowdfunding For Musicians. To suggest topics for Hypebot, contact: clyde(at)fluxresearch(dot)com.