How to Broadcast Yourself on YouTube

Upload your videos and customize your personal channel

If you're interested in using YouTube to broadcast yourself in the video medium, this guide covers everything you need to know to get started.

Before you can access the upload service, you first need to create a YouTube account. Go to YouTube, and click on Sign Up in the top right corner. If you have a Google account (Google owns YouTube), you can use that to sign in. 

From there, you'll be able to set up and customize your YouTube account.

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Prepare Your Videos

Young blondhaired woman applying makeup while doing a make-up tutorial at home.
Makeup tutorial videos are very popular on YouTube. Guido Mieth / Getty Images

To begin, you will need to get a your video ready for uploading. Digital videos can be very large files depending on the quality they were recorded at, so you will need to consider basic points like video compression, file format, and bandwidth.

Currently, YouTube accepts most video formats (including HD and 4K formats). Video files can be as large as 128GB and or up to 12 hours in length if you verify your YouTube account; otherwise, the maximum length of a video is 15 minutes. These limits can change depending on YouTube policy.

It doesn't matter what you name the video file before you upload it to YouTube. You can change the title later.


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Upload Your Videos

Now that your video file is prepared, you can upload it to YouTube. On YouTube, click the Upload button located at the top right (it appears as an up arrow icon).

Click Select files to upload to browse your computer to locate your video file. You may also drag-and-drop your video file on the upload space of the YouTube upload page.

After starting the file upload, it won't be immediately viewable. You will see a progress bar at the top of the upload screen. Once the file has finished uploading, the file will be processed by the site before it is viewable, and you'll see a second progress bar for this. 

When your video is finished processing, click Publish.

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Enter Video Information and Privacy

While you wait for your video to upload and to be processed, enter information about your video in the fields available. Start with the Basic info tab. Think about the title, tags, and description of your video, as this information will help make your video visible to people who search the site. Use clear, specific, and informative terms and descriptions.

Click the dropdown to the right of the title field to select the privacy setting for your video. This determines who can see your video and whether it appears in searches, news feeds, and on your YouTube Channel.

There are three settings for privacy on your videos: 

  • Unlisted - Your video can be reached and shared with the video's URL, but it doesn't show up on searches, on your YouTube Channel, or in your subscribers' news feeds.
  • Private - Only you and people you specify can view private videos. The video cannot be shared, does not show up in news feeds, and does not appear on your channel.
  • Public - Your video can be discovered through searches, shared, and shows up on your channel and in your subscribers' news feeds. This is the setting you want to use if you want to build an audience and reach the largest number of people.

After you fill in the basic info, click the Advanced settings tab. Here you can define the category of your video from the dropdown menu on the right. Categories include subjects like Pets & Animals, Sports, Music, News & Politics, and many others.

You can also enter the Video location. This will help users who are interested in a specific place to find your video.

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Customize Your YouTube Channel

Your YouTube Channel is where viewers can find all of your videos and information. It's your little home on YouTube for sharing your videos, and fans can subscribe to your channel to keep up with your latest videos.

There are lots of ways you can customize your YouTube channel, including adding images, text, and changing the layout to reflect your personality or brand and to make your channel stand out.

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Promote Your YouTube Videos

Your video has completed uploading to YouTube. Congratulations, you are now officially broadcasting yourself on YouTube! But is anyone watching? Your next step is to get viewers and grow your visibility.

YouTube is one of the top most visited sites on the web, receiving around 30 billion visitors per day, and an average of 300 hours of video are uploaded to the site every minute. With that much video content, how do you get your piece of the viewing pie? By promoting your videos and interacting with other YouTubers you can begin to get people to watch and comment on your videos. It will take a little while, but with time you can become a YouTube star.