Businesses often fail to realise their potential because they don’t sufficiently utilise technology for marketing purposes. Many companies overlook the panoply of social media channels that exist to share their content, including YouTube.
The site draws one billion unique users every month. If you’re looking to significantly grow your business, then it’s important to understand how to use YouTube to effectively market content and build your company’s online presence.
Getting set up
Your YouTube channel homepage will be the very first thing that people see. It needs to be professional, well designed, consistent, and clearly display what the channel is about. Choose a clean, high-quality photo for the banner and profile photo. The photo should also be easily identifiable so that when you comment anywhere on YouTube it can act as an ad for your business. On the banner, include a short description of what your business does, as well as what your channel is specifically offering visitors.
YouTube allows you to create a Channel Trailer, which automatically plays when someone visits your channel. This is your elevator pitch and if it is expertly crafted could gain you subscribers; but if it’s poorly made it could end up putting visitors off from subscribing, or even result in the loss of subscribers.
Don’t make the trailer any longer than 2 minutes (otherwise, a visitor may immediately refuse to watch it or lose interest halfway through watching, and then miss out on what the channel is all about). The key to a successful trailer is packing in all of the most salient information about your channel while avoiding fluff and monotony.
In addition, you can create playlists that include your very best videos; each playlist can also appear in up to 10 sections (e.g. interviews, talks, how-to-guides, so forth and so on). Playlists on popular topics will maximise the views you receive, while series playlists will encourage visitors to binge watch your videos. Using YouTube’s analytics tool, you can find out which of your videos best attract subscribers and include those in your playlists.
Be sure to add featured channels. These will appear on the right side of your channel’s homepage. When you include other channels on your homepage, such as those that you enjoy or which relate to your business, this creates an association in people’s minds and helps to grow your channel’s authority.
On your About Page, keep the description short and impactful. Write a persuasive introduction to your channel, drawing interest in the first few sentences. As with your trailer, fluff and lengthy, technical information is going to work against you.
Optimising your content
YouTube is the second most popular search engine in the world, behind Google, of course. Search is, therefore, one of the most reliable ways to grow your channel. Valuable keywords – to be used in your tags, titles, and descriptions – help to generate extra search results, suggested views, and better subscriber conversion.
One of the simplest (but most effective) ways to find out what keywords you should include in your channel’s content is to type in a keyword into YouTube and Google search. Enter a keyword that relates to your channel (e.g. travel tips, careers advice, diet plan, etc.) and take note of what the autofill drop-down results show. These results are the most searched phrases for that keyword and can help you discover those long-tail keywords that will boost your SEO.
When you find all of the relevant keywords, use them in your videos. You want to use them in a seamless, coherent way, rather than carelessly insert them into your titles and descriptions. Your content has to be clear – as well as highly optimized – if you want to gain as many followers as possible.
In order to research popular keywords, use the Google AdWords Keyword Planner. SEO experts use this tool to figure out what keywords will be most likely to benefit their AdWords campaign. This tool allows you to see the number of searches for a specific keyword, as well as how much competition there is for that keyword. Ideally, you want to include keywords that have a high volume of searches but very low competition.
Another great tool to include in your SEO arsenal is Google Trends. This tool allows you to not only research popular keywords and tags; it also offers guidance on what topics for videos you could focus on. It shows you the kind of content people are already searching for.
By using these tools and understanding SEO best practices, you can devise and implement a highly successful YouTube marketing strategy.