Saturday, January 7, 2012

How to Make Money Online

You thought I was above this .... fooled you! Well, not really. I have watched a ton of videos online, read a bunch of blogs, and come to a few conclusions. None of the people making money posting their work online ever ask that question.

Yep, the easiest way to make money with your content is not to try for that. Put what you want on there, enjoy making it. Because if you start making things with the intent of making money, you will fail. Even then, the only reason to want to make money on content is so you can make more content.

Which brings me to my gripe about some of those who do make it big online. They change their content or stop making more. That's just not cool. When you make a video or song for the internet and post somewhere, do it because you love making art. Do it for the fans. But most of all, do it because you want to. There is no excuse for changing what you do after the fact.

Which brings me to my new website, which will be officially launched soon. Digital Noise Graffiti which is 100% free, free as in freedom of speech and free in cost. But, and there's always a catch, you cannot make an impression on me if you are looking to make money so to get artist status you have to do what you enjoy with no other goal than to entertain the masses, or just yourself. You don't have to be popular.

I know a bunch of "get rich quick" seekers will find this, and I hope they do and read the whole thing. There is no magic bullet to financial gain, anywhere. People who make money adding content online didn't just wake up one day and find an email in their box saying "let us pay you for that!" They did what they enjoy. So, what makes their content popular?

Now there's a good question. Popularity is something everyone wants, even if you don't care about getting paid, and not all popularity is the same. So here's a list of things that make people popular on Youtube specifically:

  1. Fun - they enjoy what they are doing and have fun making it. It's not about getting ahead in anyway. The most successful content makers for Youtube don't complain about being unpopular and they don't worry if they get some dislikes. It's just for fun.
  2. Originality - the biggest and most important element. Imitating your favorite ... whatever ... can be fun, yes, but not always original. Parodies are pretty much out dated now. Not that you should never do them, just, there's a lot of them already. Animations, been done to death, but animations using certain methods can be very unique. Just don't expect that parody of Lady Gaga to attract many viewers.
  3. Engaging - something I have come to learn is that engaging the audience will get you more subscribers. In the video actually ask for their comments. Don't beg, just ask. Give them a question, that seems to work well. Don't discourage constructive criticism either, if anything engage those commenters more. Viewers can't resist coming up with humorous or insane answers to even the most inane question. Not only will this get people watching more it will also give you a lot of laughs. Win-win.
  4. Moderation - too much of anything can be a bad thing, and special effects are one of those. Don't use them unless it's part of your art, even then, don't use them too much. CGI is great as an art form, but using it to replace reality will only detriment your work. Yep, one of the great things about computers is fading like a fad. People want real or art, not the replacement of reality. This is also a good thing for CG artists who can't make realistic work, people want to watch your disfigured images more than those who can make things like Dances with Smurfs .... oh wait, that was called Avatar.
That's pretty much it. 4 elements, keep to those and eventually you will attract a regular audience. But be patient, with all the new content online it takes a while for things to circulate. But when you start getting your own work sent to you by other people with "check out this awesome ..." then you know you've hit on something.

In closing, don't worry about making money online, just don't. You will most likely be hurt by a scam if you are searching for it, and scams hurt. Just sit back and enjoy the ride, one day you can be famous at least.

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