When most people think of YouTube, they think of videos. In truth, however, YouTube is a valuable social media site. This is because it’s easy to use, easy to share, and encourages comments. YouTube videos can also be embedded in other social media sites like Facebook and Twitter, and can be sent via email or included in blogs. And you don’t need any special software to view a YouTube video – just click and enjoy.
The social benefit of this is obvious, but is YouTube a good tool for business marketing? Absolutely. According to YouTube’s website, they have, “hundreds of millions of users from around the world.” It also operates in 24 countries and in over 30 languages. Also, YouTube searches are second only to Google searches. Doesn’t it make sense to devote as much time to YouTube as you devote to other search engine ranking?
Of course, as with other marketing strategies, you want to approach YouTube in the most effective way. Below are 10 great YouTube marketing secrets – five for creating great content, and five for getting that content noticed.
Five Secrets to Creating Great YouTube Marketing Content
Make it fun and interesting. Remember, YouTube is social and entertaining. You want to create content that is funny or amazing. Content that people will share with friends. Think of how-to videos, product demonstrations, manufacturing videos, interviews, people wearing your product and having fun, or people enjoying your service. Is there a new and interesting way you can show viewers why what you do is so great?
Keep it short. Anything longer than 5 minutes, no matter how interesting, will not keep most viewers’ attention. If you have a longer piece you wish to show, break it into smaller videos.
Be real. You don’t have to worry about gimmicks, special effects, or professional filming. Be genuine. If you’re enthusiastic about your business, that will come through in your video. Viewers will notice, and be turned off, if you try too hard.
Do your research. This is one of the key secrets to creating great YouTube content. Look at what other companies are doing. Look at what your target market viewers are watching. What do you find interesting? You will quickly see what works, and what doesn’t.
Encourage participation. One of the best ways to generate excitement about your content and get others to share it is to have a contest. For example, encourage viewers to make their own video using your product, and have other viewers vote for the winner. Challenge the viewers to figure out a mystery or solve a riddle. Remember to keep it relevant to your product or service.
Five Secrets to Getting Your YouTube Marketing Content Seen
Tags, tags, tags. Tagging your videos is essential. You optimize your website with the proper keywords so the search engines can find them; apply the same principles to your video tags. Think about how someone would do a search in your area of expertise. Check out what tags other similar videos use.
Spread the word. Don’t expect to upload a video and get a million views. Just as with any other marketing strategy, you’ll have to get your information out there via multiple channels. Post your videos on your Facebook business page, blogs, and your website. Encourage your friends, family, and customers to share your video. Mention you’re on YouTube in your print advertising.
Keep it fresh. One big mistake businesses make on YouTube is to give up! Just because your first few videos don’t get many views doesn’t mean you should stop. It takes time to build a presence and get your name out there. Fresh content shows you’re actively interested and present as well, which tells potential customers that you take your business seriously.
Leave comments. Again, participation is the key to social media. Adding your comments to relevant videos is a way to get people to take notice of your interest and/or expertise in your field. Often people will read a comment and click through to see what you have to offer. Keep the comments positive. Nasty comments might get interest initially, but will hurt your business in the long run.
Mind your thumbnails. A thumbnail is a small, still picture that shows a frame from your video. With YouTube, that thumbnail is created by capturing a still somewhere in the middle of your video. You want to make that thumbnail as appealing to potential viewers as possible – they will click (or not click) on a video depending on how attractive that thumbnail is to them. YouTube lets you choose between three possible thumbnails for each video. If none of them look good, consider editing your video until you get something appealing as a thumbnail shot.
With time, trial-and-error, and research, you will begin to see what works for you. The important thing is to be realistic in your expectations. While we often hear of videos “exploding” or becoming viral, this is a rare thing. YouTube is a way to get visual content in front of potential customers – if you can think of a fun way to visually promote your product or service, you could find a very powerful marketing tool at your fingertips (for free, I might add). It’s certainly worth a try!