Posted on January 5, 2011 by Kevin Getch While the vast majority of people who use YouTube enjoy watching cute kittens or posting videos of crazy stuff their friends do, there are some serious business opportunities to be had using the world’s largest video website to promote your products, services, or just your quirky charm. The opportunities will often hinge greatly on the kind of business you run. For instance, if you are simply a “YouTube Celebrity,” the upper echelon of that group is actually getting an unexpected perk from the website, owned by Google. This is what Media Jobs Daily is reporting: YouTube is giving 500 of its partners (what it calls invited content creators) $1,000 to spend on video equipment “to produce even higher quality videos and ultimately drive bigger audiences to their work.” The motivation is that if their biggest draws are producing higher quality videos it will increase their viewership, more than making up for the expenditure in ad revenues. But back to how YouTube can benefit the average business looking for new ways of promoting their products and services. For those of you not so familiar with how YouTube works (beyond pressing play on a video you were sent by your best friend), starting a YouTube channel of your own is a super easy and potentially cost effective way to wider exposure and increasing your bottom line. Once you set up your channel, which should take all of 5 to 10 minutes, you can begin uploading videos. People may find your videos through organic search (Google or on YouTube directly), but you can also proactively go after viewers. If viewers find your videos interesting or valuable enough, they have the ability to subscribe, which gives you a much better chance of them returning for future videos. So, how do you make money with YouTube? The vast majority of commercial YouTube channels will be using their videos mainly as a promotional tool. Think of it as your own television network advertising your business. Sure, you’re viewership won’t rival actual TV networks, but given the low cost of maintaining a YouTube channel, you don’t need millions of viewers for it to be valuable. Remember, people who come upon your video aren’t just kids surfing YouTube. If properly optimized for search engines, it will show up for people searching Google (or other search engines) for your product or services. For example, what if you’re a home remodeling company? Why not do instructional video on the best ways to maintain one’s roof? You can end your video with a quick plug for your company and even provide a link to your company’s website. There are many ways you can promote your company and in this day and age, doing it with a video is not just cost, but it just may be an easy way to lure in potential customers.