YouTube is the world’s largest video platform, with over 4 billion videos being viewed every day. Even more impressive is that the average person is spending at least 40 minutes per session on YouTube. That is a lot of time to be focussed on a screen. Amber Williamson, Founder of Digital Willow, takes up the story.
When speaking to our customers, it is not uncommon to hear that people prefer watching a video, rather than reading text. This is backed up by a plethora of statistics, such as HubSpot’s Content Trends Survey 2017; this survey shows that customers pay more attention to video content and they also want to see more video content in the future. No matter the report, it is undeniable that video consumption is on the rise. As a result, there is an increasing desire for companies to use video as a medium to explain their products and services.
With this in mind, are you using YouTube to host videos? Or thinking about ramping up your video strategy this year? If not, you should be. These next four tips will show you how best to get started, as well as cultivate those precious moments when customers and viewers are giving you their captured attention on your YouTube channel.
Tip 1: Have a clean and organised homepage
Be easily navigable. Your homepage should include your company description, a fully completed ‘about’ section, a link to your website, and an eye-catching cover image; like the example below. Use your homepage as the platform to introduce yourself to viewers and make an effort to list all your details.
Pro hint: Once you have some videos, remember to connect your page with your social media channels i.e. Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. You can do this by going to ‘Customise channel’ > the ‘About’ tab> your social media channels under the tab ‘Links’.
Tip 2: Regularly publish interesting and useful videos
You may be wondering: ‘what sort of videos should I publish?’ Having a video strategy planned across your calendar is a must!
Here is a generic example:
When it comes to video, our recommendation to get moving is ’done is better than perfect’. These days you don’t have to spend a fortune on video production. Remember to get the core message of your video across in the first few seconds. This is the time when the audience’s attention is at its highest – don’t fall into the trap of saving the last 5 seconds for the punchline!
Pro hint: Consider adding subtitles to your videos for those who have issues accessing sound – either because of hearing problems or because they are at work or on public transport.
Tip 3: Add relevant titles and descriptions
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) techniques apply to videos and will significantly affect how your videos rank within YouTube & Google’s search results page. Make sure you give each video a clear and relevant title, as well as a thorough description (those 2 lines under the video title). YouTube and Google heavily rely on the text you provide with your video to understand what it is about. The more information you provide upfront in your description, the better YouTube can rank it for your target keyword.
Include video keyword(s) once in the title, once or twice in the description, and in the tags when you are uploading the video. Have you noticed that YouTube (in the same way as Google Search) highlights your search query when it matches video descriptions? As you can see in the example below, keywords are YouTube’s means of categorising your content.
Pro hint: Provide a detailed description of your video and you will be rewarded with SEO. Remember that your keywords must relate to the content!
Tip 4: Grow a loyal audience
Think about your YouTube channel as a communications centre; videos are an incredible way to explain complicated topics. For example, Q&A content or how-to-videos are genres of content with high engagement rates.
To encourage viewers to discover more about your company, here are two top tricks: firstly, ask people to subscribe to your channel so that they receive future updates. This is literally something you can do with the video content itself. Secondly, post-production, add a branded watermark button on all your videos post-production. The watermark creates a button that can be labelled as ‘subscribe now’ and will activate when the viewer’s mouse rolls over it.
Pro hint: To add a watermark, go to your YouTube dashboard, then to Creator studio, Channel settings and then Branding. Click “Add a watermark’ where you will then be asked to upload an image; this can be shown either throughout the entire video, or at a specific time.
These four steps will kick-start your YouTube Channel and ready it for success. These tips work especially well with a content strategy in place, so invest some time in doing so if you haven’t already. A content strategy can adapt and improve over time. With the data YouTube provides, it is easy to review high- versus low-performing content and pivot your strategy accordingly. Remember that done is better than perfect, so get started today.