YouTube video marketing tips

With nearly two billion users viewing millions of hours of video each day, your business can’t afford to miss out on the marketing behemoth that YouTube has become. It’s the world’s second most-visited website in the world and is free to use. With a YouTube marketing plan, your small business can reach millions of potential customers.

Why use YouTube marketing?

Video is an increasingly important part of any marketing activity. According to the State of Video Marketing Survey, video plays a vital role in helping customers discover your brand and convince them to buy your products. The survey found that 81% of people have been convinced to buy a product after watching a brand video, and that 72% of people would rather watch a video about a product compared to reading about it on a website.

Video helps customers decide what to buy, and who to buy from. According to YouTube-owner Google, 80% of shoppers who watched a YouTube video related to a purchase they were planning to make, watched a video about it at the start of their shopping process. Just over 80% of businesses claim that video results in a positive return on investment – they get more money in sales than the cost of making the video.

So how can you make video work for your business? The YouTube video marketing tips below can help you make more effective video and deliver a successful YouTube marketing campaign.

YouTube marketing tips

Create explainer ‘how-to’ videos. While there are lots of different ways to use video to market your business, one of the fastest-growing types are ‘how to’ videos. According to Google, YouTube users are three-times more likely to watch a how-to video about a product than read a manual. Video explaining how your product works, or how to do something that involves your product help the viewer learn about something relevant to them.

Keep videos short and to the point. Don’t expect customers to watch a long video – they have other things to do. Keep videos to three minutes or less and make sure the video is focused on a single message.

Create compelling titles. It doesn’t matter if your video looks fantastic if no-one clicks on it. Your video titles have to do a great job of selling your video to viewers. Keep them short. There’s a 100-character limit but it’s best to keep it around 70 characters as it starts to cut off. Titles should be clear and descriptive, so viewers know what the video is about. Highlight the benefits of watching your video.

Use target keywords. YouTube is used as a video search engine, so make sure your video is discoverable. Decide on the target keywords your customers are likely to be searching for and add those keywords to the title, tags and description.

Write a compelling video description. Use the video description to sell your video – what it offers and what to expect – as well as including a call to action such as visiting your website or subscribing to your YouTube video channel.

Choose video tags carefully. Tags are words that describe your video, and help YouTube know when to show it in video search results. A quick tip: search YouTube using your target keywords and see what tags similar videos are using. Make sure you choose tags relevant to your video. If viewers quickly stop watching, YouTube will place your video further down the search results.

Create thumbnails that work. A thumbnail image appears next to your video in search results. While it won’t increase your visibility in search, its job is to get people to click and watch your video. You can use a still from your video or create an image, but choose one that’s relevant to the video’s content. You can create thumbnails in most photo-editing software. Opt for standard video sizes – 1280×720 or 1920×1080 and the 16:9 aspect ratio works best for YouTube players. Include the video title on your thumbnail with a call to action.

Include calls to action. Be clear what you want to viewer to do when they’ve watched your video and ask them to do it as part of your YouTube marketing activities – both in the video itself and in the description. Include a website link and end the video with a clear message such as a request to visit your website for more information.

Optimise your YouTube channel. Make sure your YouTube channel is as appealing as possible, rather than rely on YouTube’s default settings. Add your company logo, short bio and cover image, including a call to action. Make sure you add links to your website and other social media channels.

Regularly upload new videos. Don’t upload a few videos and hope for the best. An active YouTube channel with regular uploads of relevant videos can attract subscribers, and keep viewers coming back. Develop a video publishing calendar with a list of videos to create and when you will upload them.

Engage with viewers. YouTube is a social media platform, so avoid simply uploading videos. Regularly check comments and respond to questions, ask viewers for videos they’d like to see, and in your video ask viewers to leave comments.

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