A quick summary of important data from 2011:
YouTube Views: 61.0 million
5min Views: 6.8 million
Total 2011 Views: 67.8 million (185,750 per day)
New YT Subs: 12,378
Lost YT Subs: 3251
Net Gain: 9127 (25 per day)
76.3% of views came from embeds
Snail Bob 2 Part 1 was my most viewed video, with 6.25% of the year’s views (10.6% of the year’s total for both parts of Snail Bob 2).
Hope everyone had a great 2011 and an even better 2012!
I was trying to come up with some new way of looking at my data last night, and this is the result. I went through YouTube’s Insight and noted my monthly views, starting with January 2008… when I only had 3 videos! From there, you can see my growth over time along with the ups and downs. Added into the totals for Nov 10 – May 11 is my monthly 5min.com view data (Jun 11 to present accounts for 150k-200k/mo, but I didn’t add them in).
Totals about 119 million views. Plus another 2 mil so far for Nov and another 1 mil for 5min across Jun-now gives ~122 million total views to date.
I last posted about this in December 2010. It’s now been 6 months, so I’ve decided to look at the numbers again (as the last update was covering the 6 months from June 2010 – December 2010). I find the results to be very fascinating:
1) I think the difference between “Total” and “Worldwide” is because of Turkey; from what I’ve noticed, Turkey is not counted in either Europe or Asia… and the views from Turkey line up fairly well with the difference between the 2 values.
2) Note the decrease in US views, with the Worldwide views remaining fairly constant. My theory on this is 2-fold; a) I’ve been doing less work for ArmorGames, Kongregate, Bubblebox, and Candystand recently… which likely have very high US traffic. And b) I’ve had a ton of work for Spil Games’ network over the same period, who heavily focus on non-US, non-English-Speaking traffic.
3) US, Can/Mex, Europe, and Aus/NZ have decreased from 84% to 78%. Majority is still US and Europe, although that percentage has decreased as well.
I first compiled this list back in May, and felt it was time to update it. I followed the same procedure… typing Walkthrough into YouTube search and then going through page after page of videos. This time around, I limited it to 1+ million views in 5 or less videos, instead of allowing in walkthroughs done in 40 parts. The list has grown from 18 to 36 in the past 7 months:
Red Remover remains the dominant king, and the game’s Player Pack joins the ranks too. Poptropica has grown from 6 to 9 entries on the list. JohnnyK’s games have grown from 2 to 5 entries. We now have 2 “random” entries on the list… walkthroughs done for random flash games that aren’t the developer, sponsor, or me. Games done by me have grown from 8 to 14 entries.
The trend remains the same though… Poptropica, Phuzzles, Puzzle Platformers, and Physics. And we get to add a Point and Click to the list too, just to keep the ‘P’ genres intact. Oh, and as a note, I added in 5min views to games done by me.
Last week, YouTube opened up their video ad program to all partners. I’ve been waiting for this for over a year now, and have implemented video ads into about 100 of my videos. Unfortunately, video ads seem to be for on-YouTube views only… which means the 70% of my views that take place off-YouTube won’t have them.
If any of you have seen some of these ads appear since yesterday… what are your thoughts on them? Are they too intrusive? Will you still watch videos despite having to wait 15 seconds for them to load?
So crazy to think… amazing really. For a walkthrough to have so many views. This is the only level’s walkthrough hit 3 million views today. Yay!
Use Boxmen will hit 2 million very shortly as well.
Don’t think I’ll have any new 7 digit milestone posts for a while. Oh well.
Didn’t get a chance to post about it yet, but I hit 500 videos last week with my 2nd half walkthrough of Pipol Smasher. Not too shabby, although I had 410 on Jan 6th, which means I’ve only uploaded 91 videos in the past 6 months. This makes sense though, since in early 2009 I was uploading walkthroughs to any game I could find. Now, I’m only uploading walkthroughs where I can monetize them.
Also had a 5th video hit 1 million views, and a 6th that should hit 1 million today (999,000 as of midnight).
Are there any statistics/data that you guys would like me to show? I plan to do an update of Top Sponsors / Devs by views later this month.
This post stems out of my getting 10,000 subscribers while in NYC last week. It made me think about the relationship between total views and total subscribers, especially in comparing conversion rates from a year ago and now. It also just so happens that I’ve kept track of milestone dates of both views and subscribers, so I have some nice data points to work with. All information in this post will be based on a 1000:1 view to subscriber ratio.
Basic analysis: View and Subbie growth remained relatively similar through the 5000 mark, at which point Views started to completely dominate. I could go back into my spreadsheets and pull more data points of small areas between 5000 and 10,000… but that just seems like too much work.
The interesting question to all of this is why. I have a few theories, the combination of all likely forms the real reason.
-The 5000 mark is hit in roughly July-Aug 2009, which is around when I started to get a lot of in-game features. The in-game features increases views, but the views are not on YouTube, which almost certainly is the dominant factor as to why views increase dramatically from this point onward and subscribers lag way behind.
-There are only so many people interested in flash game walkthroughs. After those 5000+ people subscribed, it took much longer to get more because they just aren’t as interested in the content.
-Aug or Sept 09 is around when I stopped doing videos for random games, focusing only on games that I can monetize (the vast majority of which are in-game). This has resulted in less videos being released overall, so less exposure.
So what this tells me is that when the views are coming from YouTube, there is about a .1% conversion rate of view to subscriber… but when the views are from embeds on other sites, the conversion rate is closer to .02% (about 1 in 5000). This .02% is more from looking at data from the past month or two specifically, not from the difference in 10,000 values in the chart above.
I’d like to discuss the pros and cons of doing videos in multiple segments. Because it’s a decision that has to be made on every game that I work on… and should be considered by anyone else who makes walkthroughs. There are a few choices: 1) Show the entire game in 1 video. 2) Split the game up into a few videos. 3) Do 1 video per level.
1 video per game:
-Simple. Viewers only need to click on 1 video, and they get everything they need. Can make it more difficult to find 1 specific level. May intimidate potential viewers by how long the video is or they may get bored and stop watching. Likely will only get 1 view/person out of the game. Non-partners capped at 11 minutes, so may need to edit out some content or speed up the footage.
-I recommend doing 1 video per game on very short games that do not have levels, specifically point and clicks and room escapes. I’ll also try to only do 1 video for games that I don’t think people will be very interested in and I can make them reasonable in length (ala Blox).
A few videos per game:
-This is what I like to do, when possible. You’re not going to upset your subscribers if you pump out 2-3 videos for 1 game. With a few videos, you can keep the length down while keeping the footage at 1x speed. You’ll also likely get multiple views per game this way. It’s a balance between being a greedy view whore and keeping your viewers happy and focused. Bite sized pieces, instead of everything at once.
-I try to do 2 videos for a game, ideally. As mentioned, it doesn’t make sense to do it with point and click type games… and some other types of games wouldn’t make sense to split the footage either. But most level-based games work to have the content split. They can find a specific level quickly if they want or get half the game in a few minutes. Multiple views per game is also very nice, but watch the greed.
1 video per level:
-Ultimate ease of finding the level you’re stuck on. Extremely short videos. Tons of views per person per game. Lots of extra time in editing, rendering, and uploading. Likely will piss off subscribers from the flood of videos at one time. A pain for users if they want to watch the entire game.
-I really don’t recommend doing this. It’s enough work to edit and upload 1 or 2 videos, but doing it for a game with 30 or 40 levels is just a royal headache. The times I’ve done 6-7 videos for 1 game have all resulted in me losing about 10 subscribers… people do not like getting flooded with content from 1 person. Sure, you’ll get extra views out of it, but is that worth the scorn of your viewers?
In the end, it’s about judgment. Different games make sense having different numbers of vids for them. To me, it’s common sense. But make sure to balance your desire for views with your audience’s wish for simplicity. I’d say to always err on the side of too few as opposed to too many. When I’ve done 6-7 videos per game, it was almost always out of greed, and it hasn’t worked out for me yet. I’ve really tried to stop doing that, and keep it to 4 videos max per game… ideally 2.
Haven’t posted an update on my vid stats in a while… so voila!
(view the image directly to see it full-size)
Percentages continue to go up… but I’m most certainly being pickier on games I walkthrough; I rarely do vids now unless I know it’ll be in-game or a very large title that I can monetize (ala Bloons TD 4).