Learn About Money On YouTube


YouTube is a great money resource.


In case you aren’t in on the secret yet, YouTube™ has become a tremendous video library of free education. No matter what subject you are interested in, it’s likely that many videos have been made about it—often by teachers or true experts. When it comes to money, there are plenty of instructional videos available. In this article, you’ll see how easy it is to find them. Just as important, you’ll learn tips for avoiding the scams and misinformation that are also found on this amazing online resource.


Everything About Money


How often do you think about money? Chances are, it’s in your thoughts several times a day. Money raises endless questions. How can we make more of it? How can we acquire enough to retire in comfort? How can we waste less of it? How can we invest to win? What’s the best way to find a new job fast? Do we really need life insurance? All of these questions and thousands more are discussed on YouTube™.


YouTube is the 3rd most visited website.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Youtube


How to Find Relevant Videos


The easiest way to find a video on YouTube is to use the search box, located at the top of each page. Start typing a phrase, and a drop down menu will appear, showing a variety of options. For example, suppose you are interested in investing in the stock market, but don’t know how. In the search box, type “stock market” without quotes, and a menu will appear with several suggestions:


Seek out money topics on YouTube.

If you are new to stock investing, you might choose “stock market basics”, or “stock market tutorial”. To select one of these subjects, use your mouse or push the “down arrow” key on your keyboard as many times as needed to move to the correct line. Then click or press the Enter key to go to a page that lists videos about this subject. For each video, you will see a “thumbnail” picture and a description.



If you type a long, complete phrase in the search box, you may find good, relevant videos listed. However, if your phrase is too detailed you won’t get many hits, and you are likely to miss some good ones. Therefore, experiment with different search phrases. Sometimes you will scan through a long list of less useful videos before finding a gem.


Finding Highly Rated Videos


Searching on YouTube is easy.

Select how you want to view your search results.

The videos on YouTube™ are rated by its registered users. However, keep in mind that what the general public likes about a particular video may or may not apply to you.  Here is how to sort the list of videos by rating:  Near the upper right corner of the page, you will find the words “Sort by:” and a button that says “Relevance”. Click on the button, and you will see a drop down menu.


If you move the mouse over the word “Rating” and click it, all of the videos on the page will be sorted with the highest rated videos first. (Note: Every list of videos includes a few sponsored, or advertising videos—the list of highly rated videos will begin immediately below the sponsored ones.)


If you really want to be sophisticated in controlling what videos are displayed, look near the upper left side of the page for the phrase, “Search Options”. If you click on this, you will see a large box showing many ways to narrow your search, such as by date, by length, or by features such as high definition or close captioned.


Once you have practiced navigating your way around YouTube™, you might realize every video is posted by a particular user who has a unique user name.  For example, there are many submissions for the popular television finance expert Suze Orman, and all are submitted under various user names.


In the example below, a clip on life insurance has been submitted by the user “sjorca”.  If you type either “sjorca” or Suze Orman in the Search Box you’ll find many of Suze’s videos.  However, if you’re looking for a particular person with a common name like “Smith” it’s generally better to search using the user name (assuming you know it).  Also, you can take a shortcut when searching by clicking directly on any user name.  When you do that you’ll get a list of videos submitted by that user.  If you really like a particular user, you can also join the YouTube™ community and then subscribe to their “channel”.



For many more tips on YouTube™ see their Essentials page.


Ideas for Searches about Money and Finance


To get started on YouTube™, here are some sample phrases you might search for related to money and finance:


Find a variety of topics.


A Word Of Caution


There is a saying that relates to free things: “You get what you pay for”. The assumption is that if it’s free it must also be without value or merit.  The only requirement for watching videos on YouTube™ is an internet connection—meaning it’s basically free.  In this instance,” free” turns out to be a good thing as there is a lot of value to be found if you’re willing to seek out those users who believe in providing meaningful content. However, it also pays to view everything you see with a critical eye, because other than member ratings and comments, there are few real controls in place to protect you against potential scam artists.


YouTube™ does pull videos from its site that are blatantly offensive, violent or disgusting, but there are no  restrictions on selling most products or services.  This means some videos will present information or statements designed to manipulate you into parting with your money, or to join a particular cause.


A healthy dose of skepticism will help you avoid potential traps or pitfalls as you explore the world of YouTube™. Remember, most videos are created by ordinary people such as your friends and neighbors and can be highly entertaining or educational.  Plus, the really good ones might even provide valuable tips or strategies that could really improve the quality of your  life.  Just be aware of the risks and you should be fine.


How can you tell the good from the bad? Here are some questions to ask yourself as you watch a video:

Watch out for "come-ons". Is this a blatant, polished advertisement for something?

Is this a friendly “come on” that will lead to an advertisement?

Does this person talking appear a little too slick?

Does this person seem a bit erratic or flaky?

Am I promised things that sound too good to be true?

Am I constantly being pushed to visit another website?

Is the video promising to reveal “secret information” but never really does it and then asks me to go to another website?


A Few Final Thoughts


Just because a video is an advertisement doesn’t mean it is necessarily bad or should be avoided. Some advertisers do a public service by creating valuable videos that are mostly for education. Such “good ads” keep the selling separate—you’ll typically see a message at the end.


It’s worth noting that, whether on YouTube™ or otherwise, most internet “scams” might direct you to another site and then ask you to part with some of your money or request personal information (like birth dates and social security numbers).  If you end up at sites like these, you may want to take extra precautions.  For more information on internet scams, go the U.S.A. Government’s webpage on Internet Fraud or watch for our upcoming post on “How To Avoid Scams and Rip-Off Artists”.


It takes only a short session or two to become familiar with YouTube™. Once you master the search process, you’ll find a wealth of information to educate and entertain you.


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