So I went over to the Coastland Center mall after work. I literally NEVER go to malls anymore. I bet the last time I stepped foot in the place was 2-3 years ago. It felt sort of weird to be honest which is strange since going to the Berkshire Mall as I was growing up was a staple of my youth. The mall felt like it reflected the slow death of conventional retail in the country. Most stores had more employees mulling about than customers.
So anyway the reason I was there was to get my beloved Casio G-shock fixed. After I broke the main pin attaching the metal band to the body I tried unsuccessfully to replace the pin myself. I knew there was a jewelry repair place at the mall so I figured I could drop it off and they would have it fixed in a day.
Well when I walked into the repair shop, just like the rest of the mall, no one was there but the man that owns the place. He was reading a magazine. I showed him my watch and he said he could fix it no problem for $20 and it would take 15 minutes. I was pleasantly surprised that he could do it immediately, saving me a second trip to the mall. I sat in a central area and people watched for a few minutes before returning. By the time I got there the man was back to reading his magazine. I bet it took him all of 30 seconds. Knowing what you are doing makes all the difference. I happily took possession of my now complete watch and have it on my right wrist once again today, just like it has been the majority of the last 13 or 14 years.
Late last week I got an email from Chase saying they were sending me a new credit card. Based on my recent track record of credit fraud I was concerned as I did not make a request for a new card. I called them to see what was up. The rep told me the new improved cards were being sent out automatically. I wasn’t quite sure what would be improved about them but thanked the guy for the info.
Well the card arrived yesterday and when I pulled it out I did a double take. Where are the numbers??? This is the first credit card I ever saw that has no account information on the front of the card. Instead the account info is imprinted on the back, a simple solution to cut down on the exposure of your CC number to the world. The card itself also weighs noticeably more than other cards, I am not sure what the added heft is about but if it helps keep the card more secure I’m all for it.
The best part of the new card is it coincides with a HUGE improvement in the Amazon rewards I get. Up until this point if I used the card to buy items on Amazon, which we do all the time, we got a 3% spiff in the form of Amazon points that can be used as cash to spend on their site. Well that kickback has now gotten a huge bump up to 5%, making what was already a good deal, great.
So many people don’t realize everything that is involved with trying to build a successful channel on YouTube. Of course it involves capturing footage, hopefully quality footage, and then the normally lengthy process of editing it into a package suitable for consumption. Once the video is uploaded, video titles are very important. A common term on YT is “click bait”, which means giving a video a short title that sparks curiosity in the viewer that gets them to click the video. The problem is sometimes YouTube creators will use intentionally misleading video titles just to get that click, hence the term.
Adding the description and meta tags is also very important as it helps your video catch hits when viewers are searching for certain keywords. Again there is an opportunity for shadiness in this as sometimes creators will add meta tags that have absolutely nothing to do with their video in the hopes it will still snag a click. You also want to try to encourage people to hit the LIKE button on every video you produce as it helps in getting that video shown in other’s Suggested Video lists. Of course encouraging people to SUBSCRIBE to the channel is important as well as they will automatically get notified whenever you produce something new, making it more likely they will view it.
When it comes to actually making money on YouTube a creator has to establish an AdSense account that will pay you each time your account balance crosses the $100 mark. The pay is based on a complex formula of video views, length of time viewers watch your video and interaction with the ads that play with your videos. I have been doing pretty well lately and have gotten a check each of the last 7 or 8 months.
However there are other ways to monetize your YouTube channel. Some people will do sponsored videos where they are paid to review or talk about a product. Of course this is something that only happens once your channel grows to a decent size. Mine is much too small at this point for that to happen. My channel however is not too small to take advantage of the Amazon Affiliates program.
The AA program is cool, Amazon basically gives you a spiff for directing people to their site. What most YouTubers will do is create AA links (amzn.to) to specific products that they are either using in the video or use otherwise. These links are included in the video descriptions. Normally if your video includes use of some product you mention that a link to the product is in the video description. If a viewer clicks the link and subsequently buys the product on Amazon, bang, you get a spiff. I signed up for the program last week and started adding some affiliate links to my old videos and I will add them to anything coming out subsequently.
It is sort of a fun side challenge trying to turn my YouTube channel into a legitimate part time job in terms of revenue. I’ll keep working at it.