The rate at which the world is creating video content today is absolutely phenomenal. If you haven't already started using YouTube, the giant of the online video platforms, it's time you did!
Producing quality videos was once the domain of people with high tech equipment but today it is a very viable format, and available to anyone who has a reasonable webcam, or phone which is capable of capturing reasonable resolution video. So best you learn how to create video footage then!
The good news is, you don’t have to have a multimedia degree and expensive design programs such as Adobe Premier, Final Cut or Pinnacle to create great videos. Thankfully these days, there are many excellent apps and programs which are cheap and easy to master to easily and quickly create videos for a variety of formats.
But first, what is YouTube?
YouTube was started as an independent website in 2005 and was acquired by Google in 2006. YouTube is completely free for users to watch any video on the website, and you can upload an unlimited amount of content. YouTube also offers users the ability to embed videos in other sources. This means that a video on YouTube can be put onto your website or blog and played. YouTube’s core function is the ability to upload and view videos. Users are, in effect, communicating when they talk to camera and upload a clip; however, this is, of course, not ‘real time’ communication. There are many other video networks, such as Vimeo, Blip.tv, Veoh, Flickr, Daily Motion, Viddler or others, but for the purposes of this lesson we'll be focusing on the formats that YouTube recommends.Users can communicate on YouTube when they talk to camera and upload a clip. On YouTube, users also have the ability to create their own channel and feature all uploads they have ever created or simply to upload a clip as a one off under their username. In terms of communication, users can ‘like’, ‘dislike’, share and comment on videos of people they know, or complete strangers.
How to get started with a YouTube Channel
You need a Google Account to sign into YouTube. A Google Account works across all Google products (e.g. Gmail, Blogger, Maps, YouTube, and more).If you've signed into any of these products before, you already have a Google Account. To sign in, enter the email address you entered on those products (if you use Gmail, it's your Gmail username). If you don't have a Google Account, you can create one on YouTube.
Here are a few important things to remember about Google Accounts and YouTube:
You sign into YouTube with your Google Account.
To sign in to YouTube, enter your Google Account email and password. After signing up for YouTube, if you sign in to your Google Account on another Google service, you'll be automatically signed in when you visit YouTube. Some older, unused YouTube accounts (created before May 2009) might not be part of a Google Account. They need to be added to one before they can be used.
If you want to create a personal channel with your name
- Make sure you're signed in to YouTube.
- Go to create a channel (if you already have a channel, the link will take you to it).
- Check the details and click OK to create your new channel
If you want to create a channel with a business or other name
- Make sure you're signed in to YouTube.
- Go to All my channels.
- If you want to make a YouTube channel for a Google+ page that you manage, you can choose it here. Otherwise, click Create a new channel.
- Fill out the details to create your new channel.
What video format should you use?
Here's the list of some well-known formats which YouTube supports (the world’s second largest search engine and largest video social media platform):
• WebM files (Vp8 video codec and Vorbis Audio codec)
• .MPEG4, 3GPP and MOV files - (typically supporting h264 and mpeg4 video codecs and AAC audio codec)
• .AVI (Many cameras output this format - typically the video codec is MJPEG and audio is PCM)
• .MPEGPS (Typically supporting MPEG2 video codec and MP2 audio)
• .FLV (Adobe - FLV1 video codec, MP3 audio)
Out of all of the above a .mp4 is the most recommended by YouTube. If your video meets one of the above formats and is less than 1GB you should be able to directly upload your file to YouTube without resizing it.
However, it is recommended to resize any video larger than 20MB (megabytes) to ensure the upload is fast. To reduce the size of your video you will need to convert it into a different format before uploading it to YouTube.
A good program to download to convert files and compress videos before uploading it to YouTube is Handbrake. Importantly it's free!