Creating a community run YouTube channel came up recently in a discussion about how to bring more traffic through the forum. A lot was suggested in the way of content, the overall direction of the channel, and what level of community involvement the project would require. I’ve compiled these suggestions, cut some, and organized the rest into something of an initial proposal.
This thread is primarily to generate some ideas/ suggestions for the future of this project. So if you have any ideas, or see anything in this initial proposal which you think is a bad idea, please speak up.
That said; this thread is also recruitment drive. This is not a project that a few users can do alone, we need more than suggestions and discussion; we need volunteers. Let me know if you want to get involved. Without further ado;
Why create a OneManga YouTube?
Obvious, but I’ll say it anyway; to attract new users to the site. There are some pretty crappy manga review/ discussion channels out there (shallow discussion, horrible hosts and poor production quality) that get 10 000+ view per video. If we put our heads together our channel could generate similar views, and attract new users in numbers we haven’t seen since 3.0’s inception.
What content will generate the most views?
As it stands (read: until someone has a better idea) the channel will create in-depth, intelligent and entertaining manga/anime news, discussion and review videos. High production quality should also be a focus.
How do we bring YouTube traffic to the forum?
There is a lot to talk about here, as there are plenty of ways we can direct people back to the forum. I’ll talk in more detail about how we can create a bridge between YouTube and the forum in the ‘content’ section of this post. But the general idea is to present the forum to viewers as a place to find comprehensive information/ theories and possibly have an impact on the future of the YouTube channel itself. The forum will also be presented as a place to have real manga discussions.
It’s well-known that the comments section of YouTube is a cesspool incapable of producing decent discussion by virtue of its layout. So our channel will have something that other reviewers don’t have, and that is a suitable place for their viewers to have an in-depth discussion about what was said in their video.
In Depth Discussion
That brings me to this (seamless segue). We don’t want to drag the YouTube comments section back here. We want to attract the right type of people to the forum, and we won’t do that by making gimmicky videos with an emphasis on humor (although uploading entertaining content is a must). If we want the right audience, and the right people coming back here, we need to create videos with insightful discussion. A channel which emphasizes such discussion may not get the view counts of one which focuses on humor, but that’s a fair trade off for the right audience.
Creating quality content is time consuming, and there probably won’t be many users willing to be directly involved with content creation while this project is getting started. So to begin with the work load will fall on a small group. For this reason we need to prioritize what content to initially put out. It seems obvious to me that we should start with:
Weekly One piece, Bleach and Fairy Tale review/ discussion videos: This seems like a good core to the channels content, not only because 3 videos a week is reasonable for a small team, but also because these videos have a huge audience on YouTube. Big 3 chapter discussions are what generate the most discussion here, and they generate the most views on YouTube; this is where we should start.
Weekly Manga/ Anime Overview/ News: The short term line-up doesn’t cover much, so we can use these videos to round off our content a bit. Initially these will be weekly, but as the channel’s content expands we may have to save the news for special occasions to make room for other videos.
Also we need a Channel Trailer: First video of the channel, to be presented on the channels front page at all times. A quick video telling YouTube what we’re about.
As the channel gains momentum more users will become interested in being directly involved with content creation, and as a result the amount of content we can create will increase. Though I’m not certain where exactly the content should expand to. Some ideas;
Manga/Anime recommendation and review video: Present a one off review for a little known series, acting as a recommendation.
Panel chapter discussions: get a small group of OMFers on google hangouts to discuss the latest big 3 chapters, taking the typical chapter discussion thread to a video format. Eventually we could have "special guests" from the established YouTube community.
Other panel discussions: Same as above, but discussing a specific topic (Will of D, Next Nakama, character discussion, character vs, debate topics, etc). These 'panel' videos will be completely unique to our channel, and help distinguish us from other anime/ manga reviewers.
Virtually anything anime/ Manga related: there is a lot of potential content, anime ep reviews, anime series recommendations, big 3 spoiler discussions, semipro series chapter reviews etc. Pretty much anything that warrants a thread here could become a video on the channel.
Way down the line we could start thinking about expanding discussion from animanga. The forum has a pretty large off topic section, with lively tv/ movie/ gaming discussions, videos on these topics are another potential avenue for the future.
Bridge to the Forum
There's heaps to consider when it comes to turning views into users, this is probably as difficult as generating the views themselves. I don’t think uploading ads for the forum (videos about the forum) will generate any interest on YouTube, or persuade anyone to come back here. Embedding our ads in videos is a better option in my opinion. Some ideas for ‘embedded’ links to the forum:
Quote relevant comments from the forums in videos (“So and So, over at omf, said such and such about this latest chapter”). Obviously this will be reserved for particularly insightful/ hilarious comments. If we want to make this a bigger deal we can have ‘official’ posters of the week/ threads of the week.
A signoff, at the end every video have the host say something along the lines of “For more quality manga discussion, or to have your say on next week’s episode, visit us at the onemangaforum, the one true home of manga discussion, link in the description”.
Feature a piece from the Imaginarium (a contest winner, or something from the art forum) at the start or end of videos.
Viewers want to have an impact on the future content of videos. They want to decide what topics are discussed, what little known manga series are reviewed/ recommended, and they want to be closely involved in content discussion. We can present the forum as a tool for such interaction. We can mention a poll on the forums for the topic of the next video; or mention that we are accepting applications on the forums for panel discussion members.
Viewers also want to have an in-depth discussion about what is said in a video, directly with the creators of that video. This means [youtube] threads here at the forum to aid in creating a dialogue with viewers. Initially one discussion thread in each of the big 3 forums should be plenty. These threads can be for discussing specific points brought up in the chapter review videos, giving feedback on the videos, and just generally generating interest for the channel while it’s young. As the channel's content grows we can make more threads as need be, with the goal of eventually having enough discussion to warrant individual threads for each video.
For this to work we need help. How much help you are able to give isn't an issue, any amount of help is appreciated. Just because you don’t have the time to create the channels content doesn't mean you can’t be part of the team. Any and all input is valuable in a project of this size, and the more opinions we hear the better the channel will be. We need an active ongoing discussion.
The best way that the forum can support the channel is by watching it. YouTube users are more likely to click on a review video with 1000 views than one with 100 views. The community getting behind this simply by watching and liking the channels videos will be a huge help as we get started.
This is what we need in order to get the channel up, running, and uploading its 'short term' content. Let me know if you can help out in any of the following ways;
An active, small group that can help with the dot points each week for what chapter reviews should entail (Good/ bad points of the chapter, what the chapter means for the larger plot, a one liner or 2 etc). This is a pretty uninvolved role, but I can’t stress enough how vital it is in creating insightful and entertaining videos. Half a dozen users providing a dump of ideas each week should be plenty.
A host, me until someone better suited for the job applies.
Video editor with a quality program. We are going for an official and professional vibe, windows movie maker 2012 probably isn't good enough (unless you are some kind of movie maker wizard). This won’t be too time consuming, as each video will be short and won’t require much editing beyond the intro/ outro and some minor tweaks (sound/ lighting corrections etc).
GFXers to help with the channels intro/ outro graphic, banner and logo. Don’t need anything too fancy, just something to add to the channel’s ‘official’ aesthetic. This isn’t an ongoing commitment, so again it shouldn’t be too time consuming.
GFXers to help with video thumbnails. These aren’t difficult to make, I’d make them myself, but they won’t be as good as they could be. 4 thumbnails a week, every week. Again don’t need anything too fancy, just need consistency. This is an ongoing commitment.
Note: The workload of the barebones crew will not increase as the channel grows; we will only expand content creation when we have the help to facilitate it.
Expanding into the Future
We basically just need more of the same; more Video editors, maybe more GFXers, and a lot more users helping with the dot points.
Down the line we also need co-hosts; a small group of users for the panel discussions. I think it’d also be a nice touch, and add to the perception of channel being the forum's, if we had different users hosting different videos. We could have a news anchor for the news videos, a recommendations host, an anime host etc.
Any suggestion for tweaks to the channel itself?
I don’t think this thread will be an appropriate place for discussing the channel once it’s uploading. I was thinking a Social group could act as a hub for those in the barebones crew to discuss the channel (video dot points, expanding content creation etc). When the channel grows substantially we can move the hub to somewhere more visible.
One thing about content that's not up for discussion; vintage anime theme songs as intro music (DBZ, One Piece, Pokémon, Digemon, Sailor Moon, yugioh etc)
Edited by hubris, 18 February 2015 - 11:13 PM.