With over 6 billion unique users every month, YouTube is the default source of internet video for many of us. Aside from being the number one place to find amusing cat videos, YouTube can reach audiences and potential customers that your website might not – if the purpose of your content is correctly thought out.
The essence of a great YouTube video is original, helpful content. It does not have to be slick or expensive. YouTube videos get served up in Google search results, often beating webpages (I’ll be talking more about optimising them in Part 2).
Want to see just how well it works?
Take my Google search below for “how to change a Ford Focus oil filter”. From over 1 million results, YouTube comes in the top 3, with the top listing having over 80,000 views. Note that I didn’t make any video selection in my search, I just put in my search term. The top listing does not come from a high-profile brand, or have a flashy presentation. When I viewed the content, it just gets to the point, with an authoritative human explaining something that people are interested in knowing about.
Getting your message across
Right at the beginning it is worth thinking about what expert knowledge you could share to foster viewers’ trust in your brands or services, so you can benefit from the potential for clicks to your website, or better still, sharing of your video by others; when this works well, it can powerfully lever your reach and drive even more new business enquiries. Generally speaking, for small to medium sized businesses, YouTube is a ‘softer’ marketing approach, working better for demonstrations of knowledge and expertise to help build confidence in your business, rather than pushing sales messages.
Your YouTube content checklist:
- Treat YouTube content just like a blog post – short introduction, snappy and informative content, plus a call to action to ‘get in touch’ or ‘visit our website’.
- Keep your audience in mind – they are looking for practical demonstrations of your expertise – ‘how-to’s’ ‘what is a…’, ‘why ‘x’ happens when..’ are just a few examples
- You have less than 10 seconds to engage your viewers, so make sure the start of your video gets straight to the point
- Aim for 1.5 to 3 minutes, break larger subjects into sections of a Playlist
- It’s better to be quick than slow (people will replay if it is interesting)
- Think about your YouTube Channel structure, split multiple subjects into keyword rich categories (playlists)
Setting up your YouTube Channel
If you don’t already have a YouTube Channel, here’s a link on how to get started:
In my next post, I’ll be explaining how to optimise those really useful video snippets you’ve posted on your channel.