How to get a branded YouTube channel for your institution in just a few easy steps

June 26th, 2008 Karine Joly 18 Comments

Up until today, the best way to get a branded university YouTube channel was still a mystery for many (including yours truly).

Since a few months several institutions (Duke University, UC Berkeley, Vanderbilt, among others) have rolled out branded YouTube channel without the ads displayed on the regular YouTube accounts.

However, there were no clear guidelines made publicly available to the higher ed community (at least none that I had heard of despite my strong interest in the topic)

So, when the questions was asked… and answered by James VanDyke from SMU Integrated Marketing earlier this week on the uweb-d listserv, I was really excited (yes, I know it doesn’t take much lately ;-):

Applying and being accepted to YouTube’s non-profit program gives you the additional branding options.

Here is the address to apply:
http://youtube.com/nonprofits

Here is SMU’s YouTube Channel:
http://youtube.com/SMUVideo

http://youtube.com/nonprofits

After reading his reply to the list, I sent a note to James to ask a few more questions about the whole process.

1) How long did it take to get a a reply from YouTube?
It took 3-5 days for a reply. I’m guessing that a real person reviews each application. People who are interested should create a normal account first and then apply for the non-profit.

2) What did it take to get your channel running?

Getting the channel running was much like getting a normal YouTube Channel running with a few more options. We created a banner image and customized the layout of the page somewhat. You can upload image map code for you banner like USC has done for their page.

3) Did you sign a contract? Did you have to go through a special process?

We didn’t sign any special contracts. You just have to agree to the basic Terms and Conditions.

So, what are the requirements to apply to the YouTube Non-Profit program?

Organizations applying for the Nonprofit program must meet the following criteria.

* Must be a U.S.-based nonprofit with IRS 501(c)(3) tax status
* May not be religious or political in nature
* May not be focused primarily on lobbying for political or policy change
* Commercial organizations, credit-counseling services, donation middleman services, fee-based organizations, and nonprofit portals are not eligible for the program

If your institution fits this profile, you should definitely submit an application to get rid off the ads. It might not be the higher ed program per se, but it’s the next best thing.

And, if any of you is aware of the process to join the “real” higher ed program of YouTube, please share the secret with us by posting a comment.