Brands like Red Bull and Jamie Oliver’s Food Tube have made success with YouTube Marketing, you can too!
Launched in 2005, YouTube changed communication for the better. The video-sharing website gave us an entirely new way of reaching out to each other, consuming news, marketing our creations, not to mention the 15-minute shortcuts to fame, nostalgia, and togetherness (and sometimes wasting time watching cats play Beethoven for hours on end).
The YouTube platform works wonders as an effective marketing platform for your business, and what makes it such a powerful platform is that videos usually attract a ton of audience, more so than a blog would. 51.9% of the digital marketers named YouTube marketing as the most preferred type of content for a high return on investment in a poll and in 2017, video content has been predicted to constitute 74% of all internet traffic.
YouTube videos should be created to sustain or create additional business for your current business or profession. For example, if you are a professional guitar player, and maybe you already go around giving lessons in your neighborhood, then you should also start a YouTube channel and a blog where you could post videos giving tips on how to, let’s say, master playing the jazz triads and harmonies, among other things.
This way of publicizing your skills basically ends up validating your credentials as a good guitarist. So when people look up for a guitar instructor in your area and end up watching your YouTube instructional videos on your website, they end up concluding strongly about your talents and proficiency as a guitar player.
Plus, you are giving limited but free information that is valued by the viewers, and in fact, a lot of people will find you through your YouTube videos.
But how simple is it to market YouTube videos effectively to build a popular YouTube channel? Not easy at all.
Posting videos on YouTube but seeing little to no outcome can be frustrating. A lot of people break their backs clawing to make the perfect content for their videos but often lag behind on building a solid marketing strategy behind the content creation.
In this post, we have rounded up some effective YouTube marketing strategies that you and business can benefit from.
Tip #1: SEO Optimize Your Videos
It’s a shame if your videos do not rank on YouTube or Google. Start by doing a preliminary “Video Keyword” search for your niche. See if Google shows videos on the first page for your selected keyword. If it does, you’re good to go. You can make even better decisions through this amazing free tool called the Google Keyword Planner.
Once you decide on your choice of the keyword, use it to name your videos. Next, add in a description. Now, this is very, very important, since Google and YouTube cannot hear what is being said in the video, hence, it is important to put in a description that is at least 250 words long with the keyword appearing within the first 25 words.
(Keep checking out this space for more on Video SEO optimization for better YouTube Marketing.)
Tip #2: Keep an Eye out on How Well Your Videos Are Doing
Google’s YouTube Analytics monitors all of your channel’s vital signs: audience retention, watch time, how many people embedded your videos on their websites, and so on. This is a free, easy-to-use tool that gives you a myriad of options when it comes to filtering out what you want in your report and how you want to visualize the metrics (line, bar, pie charts).
YouTube Analytics for YouTube Marketing Efforts
This way you know which videos are getting repeated views, and which ones are simply not up to the mark.
But your analysis should not end at this. You should be able to look into what your competitors are cooking too! Time to get yourself regular competitive reports with relative metrics.
Tip #3: Keep an Eye out on What Other Niche Players Are Up To
Third party YouTube research solution providers are the way to go if you want to save time investigating competitor YouTube channels, because let’s get realistic, there only so many number of hours in a day, and you don’t want your video creation efforts to take a hit when looking through each one of their videos.
And it does make a difference to know your competitor’s channel age, the number of times their videos have been shared, total subscribers and views, words used in their videos’ captions or descriptions, and what time of the day in a week works best for posting videos for them.
We have listed some popular competitor YouTube analytics platforms (you need to pay for these, though) that will allow you to dig deeper than just the bare bone stats and help boost your video performance.
- BirdSong Analytics
Tip #4: Promote Your YouTube Channel on Social Media
The importance of posting content that has the potential of going viral on your social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Reddit) cannot be emphasized enough. A thriving number of followers just adds to the efforts.
- Facebook: Remember to post only native videos and not links to your YouTube videos, and make sure you re-package them before posting. So for instance, your YouTube video is a 30-minute long interview of a singer-songwriter, then do not do the mistake of posting the entire thing up. You should pick a shareable moment, which for instance can be a silly joke or some impromptu beatboxing, and share it on Facebook. Also remember to put a little call-to-action at the end of your YouTube channel.
The band Green Day promoting their studio album, Revolution Radio, on Facebook
Why should you only post native videos? Because Facebook will not promote posts with links outside of it, it will barely let anybody see it as it will want people to stay only in their world. So through native videos, you are basically generating some awareness to your business that will eventually steer prospective clients to your channel or website.
- Twitter/Instagram: You market by utilizing hashtags to reach new people. When you are just starting out, you will need to find yourselves audience, because let’s face it, they may not be finding you on YouTube as of yet.
So when using Twitter or Instagram to post your Tweets or pictures, use all the relevant hashtags for your niche. In our guitarist’s instance, she used #music, #learnhowtoplayguitar, #jazzguitar, etc. when posting, because people use hashtags to find related content on these platforms. You can then include a call-to-action to your YouTube channel.
UK-based Illustrator, Jonathan Edwards, uses #StarWars, #AttackOfTheClones, #ANewHope, and #fanart to promote his latest illustration on Twitter
And here’s a tip to get a competitive edge early on, use a completely new hashtag or a relatively less used hashtag from the moment you post for the very first time, along with the other common ones, as this will eventually help you get dedicated traffic later on.
Also, make sure to post from accounts that are not your personal accounts, but you can use them to promote your business accounts.
Tip #5: Re-package Your Videos
- GIFs on Tumblr: As mentioned earlier, it’s best to pare down your video to the most valuable or funny parts. You can also do this by converting a few seconds of your video into GIFs and use Tumblr to post them (it’s considered the most GIF-friendly platform). Several GIFs can go on Tumblr in the same post and can be read and reblogged in the same sequence.
- Podcasts: Audio can be easily extracted from your videos and posted on highly effective marketing platforms like SoundCloud or iTunes. SoundCloud gives audio for free, whereas iTunes is a paid platform.
These episodes can perhaps also be converted into audiobooks later.
Tip #6: Use Your Blog to Market Your YouTube Content
Consolidate your video marketing efforts through your website’s blog.
So each time you create a new video, you can perhaps write a quick background to it and post it on your blog first. And if you are too lazy to do that, you can simply post the video transcript as original content for your blog posts!
You also have the option of pulling in your YouTube channel videos to your blog by using widgets or WordPress plugins.
But YouTube marketing is fraught with its own challenges. Although YouTube looks like the go-to option for marketing today, viewers who end up on YouTube on their own do not visit it to spend time with brands. They come there to indulge their passions, whether that’s cooking or cars, or music videos. So it might get challenging for people or brands that do not offer value to viewers’ passions. The videos that you post need to add to the entertainment, rather than interrupting it.
Videos are the tools through which you engage an audience which is not so much interested in your brand at first. In case of our guitar instructor, it’s easy. She’s feeding into the passions of people. But what if you are a diet plan provider? What videos do you put up?
Take cues from Red Bull, an energy drink-maker, that rolled out a channel featuring extreme sports. It’s not like those dangerously mountain-biking were being fueled with Red Bull the whole time, but the videos were entertaining and gave you a hell of a rush!
So, get innovative and start tapping into people’s imagination, and most importantly get smarter with your video marketing strategies, because good content without rigorous marketing can be an absolute waste.