Everywhere you turn it's hard to escape the idea these days that brands are becoming publishers. Or at least, it's hard to escape the idea that brands are trying to become publishers.
Only time will tell whether this is a new paradigm or a passing trend. But whether we're talking about Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, or even a plain vanilla website -- how old fashioned! -- the conversation has shifted toward a heavy emphasis on content that brands either produce or curate and then distribute on their very own platform, bypassing a media intermediary.
The idea, in a nutshell, is that brands of all categories must adapt to the new publishing model and morph into something akin to their entertainment cousins if they are to survive and thrive in a media environment where it gets harder everyday to capture a consumer's attention. Brands that had their own YouTube channels were viewed as cutting edge 18 months ago -- or maybe even a little beyond the cutting edge. Today, few people ask whether a brand should have a YouTube channel. Instead, the question is, what should a brand do with its YouTube channel?
While that's ultimately a question for each brand (and the agencies that handle their business) to answer, there are several larger questions brands should be asking about their YouTube channels. After all, a handful of brands are clearly engaging as if they've been in the content business for years, but many more are quite obviously stuck in neutral. So to help your brand take a look at its YouTube channel with fresh eyes, I've asked several agencies to share what they believe are some of the fundamental concerns to focus on when planning a YouTube channel.