There is an idea that whatever works for TV, has to work for YouTube.  The media are so similar: you make content people want to watch and they keep watching.  But as we know, great TV shows always had what is known as "water cooler" moments, the idea that people would gather around and talk about a show, and suddenly the show became more than you watching a glowing screen, it became a social discussion.  By association, some of the other aspects of TV shows became working myths for YouTube success.  Let's break down two essential elements you video must have for YouTube success.

Two Basic Elements for YouTube Success

There's a thought that whatever works on TV will work on YouTube: not so.  A quality production does not equal success.  What does?  2 things:

1. Connection.  Develop and craft content that form a connection with you, the story, the characters in the story, or with your brand or product.  Whatever content you may make, it's important to create human connections.

2. Community.  Think of your audience as a community rather than a gathered group of people that form an "audience."  Find a way to get people to connect to each other through the video rather than with just the content.  Making them become actively involved in the videos you create and the messages they send gives you a "community" willing to possibly, I don't know, give you money for stuff.  When people feel like they are part of a community, it's much more life-affirming than being part of an "audience."

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In other words, you can spend all the money you want to make a show on YouTube look like something that plays on TV, but if you shut out the audience in a way that does not foster a community, it won't last long.

What are some of your essentials?  Let us know in the comments below or on the video's watch page.


  • GiGi Eats Celebrities

    Lots of video commenting! I find that starts conversation, gets people interested in what you're all about, leading them over to your channel :)

  • Grant Crowell

    When you have a POV, you should always include an example that backs up that opinion. It's also important to give an example by each of these two key points right when you make that point. Otherwise it's just talking without showing, and that's really an effective way to communicate with video (or persuade as well).

  • Gregory Smith

    Great post , Tim. YT is something I've "not gotten to just yet" :) Do you know of any good software to make creative videos?

    thanks bud,
    Gregory Smith

    • Tim Schmoyer

      There's a lot of good editing software out there. If you're just getting started, iMovie or Windows Movie Maker are two good places to start. But ultimately the software you use doesn't determine what makes a video creative or not -- that's totally up to the creator.