Most YouTube commissions won’t get a second season

YouTube(s goog) kissed a bunch of frogs when it handed several million dollars to dozens of professional video producers last year.

Now YouTube parent Google is about to fund a second year of productions, but it seems only a few have become princesses — only 30 to 40 percent of funded makers will get funded again.

AdAge reports:

“A year later, YouTube has a better feel for what worked, namely programming that appeals to a young demographic in genres like humor, music, cars and sports.

“A celebrity name attached wasn’t enough. Nor was simply creating content–however good it might be–and posting it to a channel. While channels failed for a lot of reasons, the ones that are succeeding have one common characteristic: they make building the audience as big a priority as creating content.”

Google made its biggest effort to extend its skateboarding-dogs UGC brand name when it funnelled around $1 million each to dozens of professional “channel” makers last year, along with an ad sales-sharing deal. The program was replicated in Europe this fall, with smaller sums involved.

The change in emphasis tells us a little about how YouTube is having to learn as it tries to become the online equivalent of a cable TV operator.

The total financing budget appears to be getting renewed for the second year, albeit with some money going to different producers.

But channel recipients of the original tranche which have not yet earned for Google the amount in advertising that it put in may have to keep their channels broadcasting in order to continue earning money for the platform, AllThingsD reports.