YouTube is a great source for all kinds of entertaining and educational content and has become an essential video strategy for marketers. According to the 2017 State of Inbound report, nearly half of all marketers (48%) who participated in the study plan to implement a YouTube marketing strategy over the next 12 months.
If that isn’t catching your eye, YouTube also has more than a billion active users. The platform continues to develop and can be accessed in 76 different languages, accounting for 95% of the world’s population. YouTube also holds the internet’s second largest search engine and YouTube videos also rank on the first page of Google search results. Any marketer will want to dip their toes in YouTube’s ecosystem to increase any metric for their brand. But how can you take your current YouTube strategy up a level? Here are a few tips to revitalize how you approach YouTube.
Design Compelling Thumbnails
Effective thumbnails are the first items users notice about your content. Your thumbnails should be relevant to the video’s content and title and help make users click right away. Along with an appropriately sized image, include a short description to help people understand what your video is about. Dustin Kapper from PepperGang says that “whether your video is entertaining, informative, sarcastic, or best of all, authentic, be sure the first burst of your message has the hook they need to keep watching”.
Craft Interesting & Informative Videos
YouTube marketing really comes down to focusing on areas where you can deliver true value, in the form of thought leadership and engaging stories. A majority of content on YouTube is meant to entertain an audience. While entertainment is an attractive feature to have for your videos, it should not be the only feature. You’ll want to expand your content strategy to have videos that are just as informative and relatable to your target audience. If you want direct engagement with your users, you can try live-streaming to showcase your ideas at a personal and immediate level.
Another method to capture a wider portion of your audience includes keeping your videos shorter, at an optimum length of under 5 minutes. Longer form content is typically meant for individuals that are further along the buyer’s journey, so decorate your YouTube channel with additional videos to support your short-form videos to attract your visitors. Otherwise, you won’t get anywhere near the first YouTube pages with a boring lengthy video.
Group Your Content in Blocks
According to AJ Agrawal, a contributor to Forbes, one of the best ways to create efficiencies for your YouTube marketing is to mass produce your content that falls within divided blocks. Creating these blocks help you deliver the right kind of videos for your audience. For example, if you’re a toy manufacturer and you want to use YouTube to sell more toys, one “block” of videos could be Education – to educate people what the toy does and how it’s used. You can even make a block for Reviews, to highlight some of the current customers who have already purchased your product. When you think of your video strategy this way, it becomes much easier to create higher-quality and relevant content that aligns with your larger strategy.
Market Your YouTube Channel & Videos
When it comes to YouTube marketing, it is important to change the way you look at YouTube channels versus YouTube pages. YouTube for your brand is much like a second website in itself. Your channel is the homepage that anchors your YouTube website, and your videos are all the web pages a user can visit. Each video should have your name, logo, and any other branding assets along with it.
For even better marketing optimization, utilize keywords within all tags, titles, and descriptions. With the help of Google Keyword Planner or other keyword research tools, you can find relevant keywords and phrases to get you started on ranking your video competitively.
Understand YouTube Analytics
Use YouTube Analytics to see which of your videos are running successfully at keeping viewers watching. According to Greg Jarboe of Tubular Insights, you’ll want to pay close attention to certain reports, like the Watch Time report and Audience Retention report, to cater to your videos based on watch-times and engagement. Create a regular and consistent video schedule to encourage viewers to watch more than just one video when they stumble upon your YouTube channel.
Collaborate With Others In Your Industry
Reaching out to influencers or other individuals in your industry to collaborate can help shake things up if your video strategy is running stale. In fact, it is one of the most effective ways to get your content shared and distributed even farther. The biggest YouTubers and successful brands are well known for collaborating. It is a win-win for everyone involved.
Run YouTube Advertising Campaigns
Want further reach on YouTube? Try starting a YouTube advertising campaign. Google has a comprehensive list of advertising options on YouTube, but here are the two main types of YouTube advertising videos you may deploy:
Video Discovery Ads – These are ads that appear on the YouTube homepage, within search results, and as related videos on YouTube video watch pages. When a user clicks on one of these ads they will be redirected to the promoted video.
In-stream Ads – These are ads that play within a YouTube video itself. There are ads that play before a viewer watches a video, as well as mid-roll ads that appear midway through YouTube videos 10 minutes or longer. Compliment these ads with CTAs to promote user action and engagement.