12 Killer Resources for Owned Media on YouTube

image from YouTube’s Creator Playbook

At ZEFR, we often talk about the importance of mastering your entire presence on YouTube. In order to get a complete, 360 degree view of what YouTube is truly capable of, you need to properly manage your owned media, earned media, and paid media on the platform. If you’re only focused on one of those three kinds of videos, your strategy is suffering from a blind spot.

To help you get a better picture of what you might be missing, we’ve compiled some of the best resources from around the web covering every corner of YouTube. Up first is a list of resources for owned media, which refers to videos uploaded to a brand’s official YouTube channel(s).

So, if you’re looking for ways to improve the management of your own channel and optimize your content, start here. And, even if you’re already a channel management wizard, there are always new tips and tricks to stay ahead of, along with new tools to give you extra insight, deliver better results, and make your life much easier.

Straight from YouTube proper

YouTube itself has put together tons of resources to encourage the creation of great channels. These resources tend to be the baseline set of best practices, which make them a great starting point for any owned media strategy.

1) YouTube Creator Playbook

The complete 101 track to getting started.

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2) YouTube Creator Playbook for Brands

A must read. Plenty of can’t miss insights here.

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3) YouTube’s Creator Spaces

For those of you who live in cities with YouTube Creator Spaces, there are events and workshops on programming strategy, monetization and audience development.

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4) Google’s YouTube Help Center

Perhaps you are looking for something a bit more technical. Google has you covered. Their resources can point you in the right direction for editing videos and settingchannels and channel management, or analyzing and optimizing YouTube channels.

5) YouTube Help channel

Really basic territory here, but, you never know when a new feature might creep up on you, and a quick video should bring you up to speed.

6) YouTube Creator Academy channel

Here you’ll find more insights into the “why” behind many of the best practices for channel success.

7) YouTube Creators blog

Perhaps the best place to find the most up to date changes to the YouTube interface. You’ll also find access to many  different country specific hubs of info, boosting your international cred.

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Tips from the blogosphere

Once you’ve gotten comfortable with YouTube’s official resources, it’s time to expand your horizons and look for deeper, more nuanced insights from the blogosphere.

 8) VideoInk’s Hacking the YouTube Creator Playbook

If you are less inclined to invest a lot of time in reading full guides, the Hacking the YouTube Creator Playbook series from VideoInk might be for you, since they’ve distilled the key points into easy to follow action plans. They are currently posting the same series based on the playbook for brands as well.

9) ReelSEO’s YouTube Marketing Tips video series

From the wonderful folks at ReelSEO comes a weekly series of tips for video marketers, where they neatly summarize much of the YouTube Creator Playbook for Brands, among other great educational content.

ReelSEO also have their own free eBook about the social impact of your video strategy, called “The Social Video Blueprint.” (Should this list be “13 Killer Resources” now? Probably. But who’s counting?)

10) ZEFR’s “Brands on YouTube” blog series

So, we finally get to brag a little. If this is your first time visiting our blog, welcome! We’ve got plenty of posts to help you master owned media, including what metric you should really optimize for SEO, getting beyond an obsession with views, and even ways to grow your presence without creating new content.

For examples of what other brands have been up to, check out our “Brands on YouTube” series of posts that identify how brands are using their YouTube channels in various ways. As you’ll see, there is a lot to learn by example. Most importantly, however, we always try to give a glimpse of how your fans engage with your owned media and resonate with your content. If your owned media is doing its job, then it should foster the creation of earned media to carry your message beyond just your own channel.


11) KISSmetrics YouTube Marketing Guide (2014)

Shortly after launching this post, which originally linked to the 2013 edition of KISSmetrics’ guide, I discovered the 2014 edition. Thus, not only is it packed with great tips and insight based on KISSmetrics’ analytical chops, it’s also one of the most up to date resources on this list.
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12) Mainstreethost’s “How to Champion the Power of Video”

In case you still needed convincing that video is important for your brand, this 50 page eBook, geared towards small businesses, has plenty to win you over. Plus, it features a Batman-like superhero character throughout to mimic a comic book style, which is just awesome.

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What else did we miss?

What resources have you found most helpful with your YouTube strategy? Let us know in the comments below and we’ll add it to the list. Plus, stay tuned for upcoming resource lists for earned media and paid media.


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  • Thanks for the shout-out! Glad my videos can be valuable to the greater YouTube community!

    • Erik Weber

      You bet Tim. Thanks for the resource.

  • Ashley

    Very helpful list! Will be reading over all of these as they’re a big help for our upcoming channel! A few other resources that i found valuable were the yttalk.com forums for new YouTubers but great advice for brands as well, and this really cool guide http://www.vlognation.com/how-to-promote-youtube-vlog-channel/ . Keep up the great work at Zefr!