Over the years, YouTube has grown into way more than a place to upload cat videos. In a way, it’s become a new breed of “television” that lets people interact with the things they care about. This could be music or even nonprofits. Some really amazing video campaigns for nonprofits have been hosted on YouTube, and today a really amazing feature has been released to support them.
“YouTube Campaigns” allows nonprofits to set a campaign goal for their videos. For example, maybe you could do something where if your video hits 1M views, a company will donate a certain amount of money. The nonprofit can then turn to their supporters and ask them to spread the word.
It’s really cool, and we’re told that Hunter Walk championed this whole thing with his “YouTube For Good” unit and the team’s 20% time:
There is a real desire for YouTube to be a global classroom and a global town square, not just a global living room.
Here’s what the team had to say about the release today:
Ever pasted together 108 sheets of paper and drawn a giant thermometer to track your nonprofit’s campaign goal? Did you go through 27 red markers and then feel faint from their scent after trying to color it in?
Through the YouTube Nonprofit Program there is a new thermometer in town. Check out the latest tool for nonprofits: Campaigns.
This new feature allows nonprofits to create campaigns with goals like increasing views or subscribers, track their progress, and let people to contribute to their goals.
Once a campaign is created, videos in that campaign will show an overlay on them, encouraging viewers to contribute to the campaign.
While I’m not exactly sure how nonprofits will use this just yet, it is an interesting new tool to stretch the boundaries a bit when it comes to video campaigns. I can actually see this being useful for all YouTube video uploaders, but clearly this is something built with social good in mind. From my experience with raising awareness online for important causes, whenever you have tools like this to help along the creativity process, you tend to take your game to the next level. This type of thing is important for the nonprofits themselves, as well as the supporters who want a window into what these campaigns are doing as far as spreading awareness.
YouTube says it has over 18K nonprofits in its “Nonprofit Program” right now, and I can only see that growing. I’m currently in Austin for the LIVESTRONG gala, and to have a word with Lance, and I can see LIVESTRONG using this immediately.