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Introduction to YouTube for Songwriters

YouTube is the world’s largest video site on the internet. In fact, I’d be surprised if you haven’t heard of it. To find out some of YouTube’s impressive statistics, click here.  I have been a YouTube user since 2009 and have really come to learn quite a bit as I’ve worked to grow my audience.  In the past year, I’ve really come to harness it’s power for good.  If you are a songwriter interested in sharing your music, you are missing out on a great opportunity if you don’t have a YouTube account.  Even if you don’t plan to share your music with anyone, YouTube still offers you some benefits.

Why you should get a YouTube Channel

I’ll start with the obvious. YouTube is a self-publishing platform for video. So for the songwriter, this is a very powerful platform for sharing your music. It is also an effective way to catalogue and store a lot of videos. Using YouTube gives you the benefit of not having to maintain the video files or have them take up space on your own server or hard drive. You also don’t have to worry about bandwidth issues. If you suddenly have have a viral video on your hands, YouTube can handle the traffic. If you have a website or blog, you can embed videos right into your site from YouTube.

YouTube is so much more than a video publishing platform. YouTube is actually a social media platform. Through its many relationship-building features, YouTube can easily help you build an audience and help you connect with others. Some of the features that help you connect with others include the ability to comment on videos, comment on YouTube channels, send private messages, request friends, and subscribe to channels.

When you take YouTube and combine it with the other social media giants such as Facebook and Twitter, you truly have a powerful platform to share videos. With a few clicks of a button, a fan can share a video on their Facebook page or to their twitter followers giving your video instant exposure to multiple social circles! And if you know anything about viral marketing, this is how things spread on the internet in a matter of minutes – sometimes seconds!

YouTube videos can be accessed by anyone with internet access. However, to interact and actually upload videos, you must sign up for an account. It’s completely free to set up an account. Each account, then, has a channel, or home page, where you showcase your videos. There are a number of customizations you can do on your channel to make it unique. Once your channel is set up, you can create video playlists, add other’s videos to your channel, and upload your own videos. You can also start connecting with others through comments, friend requests, messages, and subscriptions.

I hope this gives you an introduction not only to some of the features of YouTube, but also the benefits it can offer to you as a songwriter.  To see what a customized channel looks like, check out mine.  I haven’t done anything too fancy with it but it does have a unique quality to it.

If you don’t have a YouTube account, go sign up NOW! To sign up, CLICK HERE.  Don’t worry…You don’t have to have any videos or plans or anything – that can come later.

Have fun!

PS – There is one important thing to remember when signing up for a YouTube account.  Choose your username wisely because it will be permanent.  Your username will also become the URL for your YouTube channel.  For example, my username is benchilcote.  The direct URL of for my channel is www.youtube.com/benchilcote.  I would suggest using your name if possible, or using your name with another word such as benchilcotemusic or benchilcoteonline, for example.  Steer away from initials and numbers that don’t make sense to anyone (I used to use bcjam26 years ago but that isn’t easy to remember).

About Ben Chilcote

Ben Chilcote is a husband, dad, full-time minister and online singer/songwriter. He is a lifelong student of music and the founder of WriteChristianSongs.com.
  • Tracey

    My main problem is that I’m enough of a musician to know I don’t want to post videos of me trying to sing my own songs…

    • chilcote

      Tracey,

      I can understand that! If you’re not confident in your singing voice, it’s even worse when you hear your own voice on a recording! It’s been an interesting exercise for me to watch and hear myself on video. Scary as it is, it has actually helped me improve my performance skills. But you make a good point. If someone is interested in just writing songs for fun, or for themselves – or for God, then a YouTube channel may not be essential. Though it could still be a helpful tool. In fact, I didn’t go into it, but you can make any video hidden or private. Hidden means you have to have the direct link to see it. Private means nobody except who you specifically give permission to can see it.

      Then again, you could always hook up with a singer and collaborate. I haven’t tried that yet.

      • Amber reinders

        i am not a musician at all i dont know if i could become a lyrisit if i cant sing or read music

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  • Symone Williams

    This sounds like a great opportunity to connect. Thanks for the invite.
    http://www.youtube.com/user/symone1176