Top Nonprofits on YouTube and the Strategies Behind Them

Here we show you the best nonprofit channels on youtube and their tactics of achieving this top tier status. Providing basic information about the channels, we help create a sense of what they do and their target market.

OrganizationSubscribersTop video views (Q4, 2020)
Description
ASPCA30,0002.6 MillionLife saving rescue of animals that are impacted by natural disasters
Nature Conservancy17,000538KWorld-wide organization that works to conserve the lands and waters that sustain many life forms
Oxfam Great Britain13,0001.8 MillionFighting against poverty, this organization provides food, clothing and basic necessities to those who need it
Junior Achievement USA2,500100KHelps teach young students about the global economy, financial literacy, and workforce readiness
RMHC Global4,400746KThis organization works to keep families together with sick children, supplying all resources needed to care for those children
Rainforest Alliance13,0005.6 MillionBeing the bridge between business and nature, this organization works to keep the harmony within the two. Making responsible business the new normal
Thomson Reuters20,0001.4 MillionAs a info service company, they provide free legal assistance to advance media freedom and raise awareness on human rights issues
ACLU29,0002.5 MillionA nonprofit organization that protects the civil rights/liberties of the American people
IFAW98,00042 MillionRescuing, rehabilitating, and releasing animals, they pave the way for animals and people to live together in peace
Save A Fox557,00041 MillionA nonprofit organization that helps rescue captive foxes, hence the name “save a fox”
American Red Cross32,0003.7 MillionA humanitarian organization that provides emergency assistance and disaster relief to save lives
SOS Children’s Villages- USA2,350114KHelping orphaned and abandoned kids find families and homes
Ted18,400,00033 MillionTed Talk is a global community that shares ideas to spread knowledge. Topics range through everything and anything
Khan Academy6,120,0008.9 MillionProvides a free world class education and helps students succeed in school
Feeding America4,3503.6 MillionA hunger relief charity that provides food to those starving people

ASCPA

Website link: https://www.aspca.org/
YouTube link: youtube.com/aspca
Video content strategy: They show their physical work, feeding, cleaning, and taking care of puppies to grab the viewer’s attention. They also use specific background music to wrap it all together and make the viewer feel pity.
What is working for this channel: The puppies are the key to the channels success as they show off their cuteness. They even caught my attention because who doesn’t like puppies?
Most popular video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y5FTgBdlD84

The Nature Conservancy

Website link: https://www.nature.org/en-us/
YouTube link: https://www.youtube.com/user/natureconservancy
Video content strategy: Using their videos, they show off this beautiful world and how animals depend on it. Giving straight facts, they gain massive support from the crowd in order to save this planet that sustains not only our life, but animal and plant life as well. 
What is working for this channel: Their visuals seem to be a big player in gaining attention as they show real world settings and catch videos of the local animals thriving. They also put out the threats of climate change that can eliminate and destroy these beautiful settings which force the viewer to take action.
Most popular video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=96hghUxUOrM

Oxfam

Website link: https://www.oxfam.org.uk/
YouTube link: https://www.youtube.com/user/OxfamGreatBritain
Video content strategy: In their videos, they confront a problem and provide a solution. They show how effective their solution is by showing the process and the end result that create big smiles all around.
What is working for this channel: Most of their popular videos contain the word “appeal” and other key words in their title that attract viewers. For example, in one of their most popular videos, they explain the devastation that has occurred in one of the poorest countries in the western hemisphere and how they have responded already. Especially when they say “we need your help to save lives” which makes us feel helpful and giving. 
Most popular video:https://www.youtube.com/watchv=Cs0s_K1IIAg&t

Junior Achievement USA

Website link: https://jausa.ja.org/
YouTube link: https://www.youtube.com/user/rb102179
Video content strategy: Their video covers show little kids learning and smiling as they invest in their future. Instead of listening to someone talk, they show phrases that help breakdown their message they are trying to get across the audience. 
What is working for this channel: Not only that but they use keywords in their titles to attract viewers about what to learn specifically. Always promoting their cause as every video includes the word “junior achievement in their title.”
Most popular video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cHjGtdUwwhs

Ronald McDonald House

Website link: https://www.rmhc.org/
YouTube link: https://www.youtube.com/user/RMHCGlobal/featured
Video content strategy: In their videos, they show the families being together and they say the word “care” in almost every sentence to show the power of a families love and affection.
What is working for this channel: In their channel, they display real life stories of how their organization has changed lives. With the parent hugging the children and taking care of their young ones.
Most popular video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xTvnjlAsEV4

Rainforest Alliance

Website link: https://www.rainforest-alliance.org/
YouTube link: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCazkF76kH3FtxT0eLuVpdzA
Video content strategy: In most of their videos, they usually show a time lapse of the forest life and how it changes overtime. This gives the viewer some insight about the geography and how it is being affected today. 
What is working for this channel: I believe their channels run off of the motto of fighting deforestation. They show how their organization has made a change and urge the viewer that they can also make a change too. The videos are very informative, showing us a new world that we need to conserve. 
Most popular video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3iIkOi3srLo

Thomson Reuters

Website link: http://www.trust.org/
YouTube link: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCcUmttr6A2QhQ7JTyqhjNQ67A
Video content strategy: At first, they start their videos with facts that inform the reader about the problem. Then they show an animated story based on true events and how their organization goes so far as to fight for basic human rights.
What is working for this channel: I feel like the stories that they share are really impactful because they are based on real events. Not only that but they show how they have transformed many lives for the better.
Most popular video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QOaI9wnOsmk

ACLU

Website link: https://www.aclu.org/
YouTube link: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC7M42vQrNmZ0tnmmenLWwBA
Video content strategy: In their videos, they give content about current events that relate to the rights of the American people. For example, they went over this recent election and ways to restore the civil rights of voters since the president wants to stop the count and belittle the very democracy that has kept this country running for the past 244 years.
What is working for this channel: Keeping up to date, they go over current events that keep the viewer interested in what is happening. They also give their own breakdowns and predictions of future results.
Most popular video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8pcWlyUu8U4

IFAW

Website link: https://www.ifaw.org/
YouTube link: https://www.youtube.com/user/ckoenen
Video content strategy: Their videos display how the organization has made a drastic change that alternated the future of this world by saving endangered species. Their strategy is to rescue, rehabilitate, and release animals. 
What is working for this channel: Not only that but they show how animals and humans can live and thrive together. Creating a bridge of peace and harmony between the two. 
Most popular video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wDkZEUGRzMQ

Save A Fox

Website link: https://www.saveafox.org/rescues
YouTube link: https://www.youtube.com/user/spookelliot/videos
Video content strategy: In their videos, they display the importance of red captive foxes by dedicating their videos in the name of that specific fox and showing their everyday life routine which people seem to love. 
What is working for this channel: Their video content strategy is very effective and makes people donate to save more of these little cute red foxes. 
Most popular video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fQVhppRP4Wo

American Red Cross

Website link: https://www.redcross.org/
YouTube link: https://www.youtube.com/user/AmRedCross
Video content strategy: They use what I like to call a visual strategy. In their videos, they rarely have people speak and instead show their impact on the community. Not only that but they also provide information that educates the viewers about disaster preparedness.
What is working for this channel: This channel is able to grab the viewer’s attention and educate them in no more than 1 min videos/discussions. This way, the viewer doesn’t wonder off given such a short amount of time. 
Most popular video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Owh0bDAo3Q

SOS Children’s Villages – USA

Website link: https://www.sos-usa.org/
YouTube link: https://www.youtube.com/c/SosusaOrgUSA
Video content strategy: Their strategy seems to be one that makes the viewer feel pity. Using the sad music and sad kids, they use phrases like “help now, and give hope” so you know you can make a change too.
What is working for this channel: Their video strategy seems to be effective as they show lost children, and then show these children finding hope in a new family and new homes. Their hashtag of #giftofhope as also gained a lot of traction. 
Most popular video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RRrk-BwIrFg

TED

Website link: https://www.ted.com/
YouTube link: https://www.youtube.com/c/TED/featured
Video content strategy: Providing different ideas and perspectives, they are able to entertain the human mind while educating it at the same time. Not only that but they sometimes have famous guest speakers who attract a lot of attention in their videos.
What is working for this channel: This channel has many famous renowned guest speakers who touch upon a certain topic and the results are astonishing. For example, Bill Gates, one of the world’s wealthiest people spoke about a virus that would originate from a place like a chinese fish market and devastate the world, and then soon after the Coronavirus happened. 
Most popular video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=arj7oStGLkU

Khan Academy

Website link: https://www.khanacademy.org/
YouTube link: https://www.youtube.com/user/khanacademy
Video content strategy: In their videos, they explain a topic, show a problem, and solve that problem. This seems to help many viewers in their pursuit of completing homework and studying for tests.
What is working for this channel: This channel makes learning way easier and helps students better understand a topic they struggle with. This shows with their increase of subscribers and views from 2006 to today. 
Most popular video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=beSsSAUf-oc

Feeding America

Website link: https://www.feedingamerica.org/
YouTube link: https://www.youtube.com/user/feedingamerica
Video content strategy: In their videos, they show real life stories and show how those starving people are impacted by this organization. Providing millions of Americans with food to fill their bellies, the impact makes life’s better as we can see the hugs and kisses within the loving families.
What is working for this channel: They show real life stories so the viewer knows they are legit. They also tell the viewer that they can help end hunger in America, knowing they can make a change.
Most popular video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Al-Go9n3YFk