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NDSUExtension YouTube Channel has a Great 1st Year

2010 was the first full year for the NDSU Extension channel on YouTube. Agriculture Communication created the channel in December of 2009 to provide a place where all NDSU Extension Service YouTube videos could be collected. NDSU Extension staff had posted videos to YouTube before December 2009, but those videos were associated with their personal YouTube account, making it difficult to find all NDSU Extension videos and nearly impossible to collect statistics about those videos.

Now that our videos are in one place, we can easily take a look at how many times the videos were viewed, how users found the videos and more.

As of December 31, 2010, 65 videos had been posted to NDSU Extension on YouTube, and those videos had been viewed a total of 12,331 times. The NDSU Extension channel itself was viewed 1,197 times. This is important because the channel allows users to browse NDSU Extension videos and discover something they might not have been looking for.

The most viewed NDSU Extension video of 2010 was "How to Build a Sandbag Dike," viewed 1,558 times. The popularity of this video demonstrates the power of video in addressing a current and pressing problem. Of the more than 1,500 views this video received, 1,259 came in March 2010, as people prepared for and began dealing with flooding in North Dakota.

The second most viewed NDSU Extension video of 2010 was "Cabbage Harvest," 1 of 10 "Horticulture for Home" videos posted this past year. The 10 videos in the "Horticulture for Home" series were viewed a total of 3,696 times. The series also included our third most viewed video,"Gardening: Without Removing Sod," with 637 views.

"Cabbage Harvest" was viewed 1,204 times in 2010. A third of those views came from "Related Videos." On every YouTube video page, there is a list of related videos selected by YouTube. Although YouTube does not share how they generate the related videos list, a video's title, description and tags clearly impact whether it shows up in the related videos list on a similar video's page.

Our "Cabbage Harvest" video shared elements in its title and tags with a video called "Harvesting Cabbage," which has almost 8,000 views. Through this association with a more popular video, NDSU Extension's "Cabbage Harvest" gained 345 views.

Title and tags are critical when posting a video to YouTube. By searching for YouTube videos with a subject similar to the subject of a video you want to post and then emulating the titling and tagging of those videos, you can get your video in the related videos list and gain views.

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