YouTube is one of the most powerful marketing tools in the world. It may appear to be a lot of cute kittens playing piano and Justin Bieber. The fact is a large majority of businesses are using the media platform for increasing their profile, CRM, profits and a myriad of objectives that spell good marketing.
A recent report showed that 15 billion videos were streamed in May 2011. A large percentage of that belonged to YouTube. Internet video viewing was up 35% and mobile viewing 20%. Those are phenomenal numbers. People may consider Facebook and Twitter bigger and more popular social media sites with great marketing potential, but think of how many people use those platforms for linking to YouTube material.
While these are rare, there are people who make their living uploading videos to YouTube. Success for Orabrush, a Utah company, came through a series of YouTube promotions leading to a distribution deal with Wal-Mart.
While the level of success can vary, there is no denying the potential to use the media outlet to put a company ahead of the curve. But like any business opportunity, it needs to be approached cleverly and practically. There has to be original, informative content that’s also equally entertaining.
Here are a few things to consider before launching a YouTube marketing campaign.
We hear the word viral a lot. It refers to the popularity of an Internet video. Of the potential billions of videos on the Internet, a large number of viral ones are indeed on YouTube. It was recently reported the most popular videos of all time are there. Yet, for the videos everyone’s watching, they still make up a miniscule of the overall catalog. An alarming number of videos do not go viral. Keep that in mind when preparing to launch your YouTube campaign. Your goal is to reach customers and clients, not some guys in Bangalore with a bong and nothing else to do. Target your material to your niche market knowing that’s likely to be a small number compared to what cat videos get.
Create Relevant Content
Success is relative. If you create content that addresses your goals and fulfills your audience’s curiosity, you’ve done your job. Your videos should be geared towards precise objectives, product, services, announcements and other relevant information. It can be fun, it can be spontaneous, it can be goofy or it can be somber. What it should never be is unnecessary. Do not release content simply to remind your audience you’re still alive. If you are going to put a video a week on YouTube, make sure they’re all unique and have something to say that your loyal fan base will want to know. Otherwise you lose your relevancy, damage your credibility and begin to lose the critical link between your business and your customers.
Location, Location, Location
The most critical component of using the Internet is making it easy for people to find your material. You can create a Hollywood quality video, but if no one watches, does it exist? As always, when using the web maximize exposure with keywords. The keywords should always appear in the title. Avoid making it the title though. Make sure to include all related keywords in the tags field. Another trick is to tag content that’s similar to yours. This way when someone searches for that content, yours will come up in searches alongside it. There is, of course, a lot more to developing solid search optimization, but this is a good start.
Brand Your Channel
This doesn’t mean paying for a YouTube channel or becoming a partner. This is about taking advantage of features already available in the platform that will give your videos a look that breaks away from the rest. If it’s not defaulted, set your videos to Autoplay. Total views impact your rankings, not how many visit the page. If they don’t hit the PLAY button, you don’t get the hit. With Autoplay, the video starts when they open your page. Also, set ‘Player View’ as the layout. Create playlists so that your videos play in an order that best represents the company and its services. Give your pages unique backgrounds and colors so that they don’t blend with the rest.
Other Social Media
Blog about your new video using a keyword rich title. If possible have someone else write it. Blogs are a great way to drive subscribers to content. You can also use share buttons, giving people the opportunity to pass your content on. There’s the option of posting content to Facebook, of course, reaching one of the largest audiences on the planet. Content also reaches more people with Twitter. Last, consider submitting to StumbleUpon. As a referrer, it is quite reliable, recently beating out Facebook for driving web traffic for social media sites.
These are only a few tips for creating a media campaign on YouTube. It will, of course, also require strategy, search engine optimization, quality video production and a team of dependable, talented individuals that know what they’re doing.
By creating content that connects and resonates, you will see a fundamental difference in everything from industry standing to revenues. Carefully building a brand with YouTube will take patience and perseverance, but the return on the investment will be worth it in the long run. Focus on what makes your brand unique, what people want from your product or service that they can’t get anywhere else and then find an interesting way to relay that information visually. YouTube is a powerful marketing tool. Take advantage of it.