As you likely already know, YouTube has grown to become one of the top places for users to search online for anything and everything they want to know about, or perhaps more importantly, for products/services they are considering buying. Part of the extreme growth in popularity around YouTube over the last decade or so is due to Google buying it and integrating it tightly within the Google Search functionality. In plain terms, this means that anything you put on YouTube (properly) will likely show up high on the Google Search results as well as on the YouTube search results. This increases your chances of being found and users don’t even need to be searching on YouTube to find your company’s YouTube videos you publish on your “Channel”.
Many business owners and sales people ask why it’s so important to have a strong presence on YouTube when they already have a business website featuring their products/services, already have social media profiles, and so on. The answer is very simple: people are lazy! Yes, I said it. If you were going to have to learn about or research something. Would you prefer to have to read and read content, or simply watch a video version of the same material so that it is basically read TO YOU? Yes, it is almost always easier to digest video content rather than reading the same thing in written form. We are all becoming spoiled these days but rather than fighting this trend you should capitalize on it by creating simple videos to describe each of your products or services. If you want to take things one step further (and you should) then try also shooting simple videos that answer popular questions your prospective customers have about your products and services. If you feel like you’re giving away too many great secrets, THAT’S GOOD! The more secrets you give away on your YouTube channel, the more visitors will watch it and become exposed to your brand (for free). As long as you play it smart and always reference your company website, you will begin driving new streams of traffic to your actual business (or business website).
Anyone can set up a free YouTube channel. Simply navigate you the YouTube website (http://www.youtube.com) and sign in with your existing Google credentials or create a new account from scratch. As far as recording the actual videos goes, don’t overthink this. You do not need a professional camera or production software. In almost every case, your smart phone’s built in camera will do just fine and actually many of the newer smart phones have an “auto upload to YouTube” feature built in where you can register your device with your youtube account one time and then all the videos you shoot can be automatically uploaded to your YouTube account. One last tip on this is to try and keep things organized. You can create different groups (known as “playlists”) containing multiple videos (like folders) within your YouTube account and this is a good idea so users can navigate easily when they are on your “channel”.
This step is critical because this is one of the primary ways your YouTube videos will ultimately get found online when users are searching. The “Tags” field is where you type in 1-3 word keyword phrases that describe what your video is about. For example, if you are posting a video called, “Give Your Kitchen a Makeover with New Appliances”, you might type the following tags in the “tags field”: “kitchen makeover, kitchen, new appliances, buying appliances, best price appliances, ge, ge profile, kennmore, [your company name], [your name], refrigerator, new stove, new oven”. Don’t go too crazy and start including tags that aren’t even covered in your video but do try and be as complete as possible because this is one of the primary ways google connects your video to those who are searching with these types of keywords on Google Search and YouTube Search.
Now that you’ve got your new YouTube channel all set up, try and set a schedule for when you’re going to shoot new videos. You should really try and shoot at least 1-2 new ones per week, preferably one per day. This may seem like a burden but remember these videos do not need to be long. Some of your shorter ones only need to be 2-5 minutes. Try creating a healthy mix of short videos along with at least 1 good longer one of at least 10 minutes each week. Your channel will grow a much larger, more loyal following if it is updated often with new content.
Author Joe Karns is a search engine marketing guru with Forward Progress, Inc., a Chicago-based full-service marketing firm. Contact us anytime for more information on having an online marketing strategy customized for your business.