It’s estimated that viewers retain 95% of a message when it’s presented in video form, and only 10% when that same message is conveyed as text. As such, you’ll want to make strategic use of video content in your digital marketing campaign, if you want it to have the maximum impact. A YouTube channel is an easy and extremely effective way to do that.
YouTube is the internet’s second largest search engine (after Google), as well as the second most-visited website in the world. As such, creating a company YouTube channel that showcases your products and/or services should be a top priority.
Naturally, your YouTube channel’s content will be focused around your core business objectives. For example, if you run a B2B company, your videos might include interviews with industry leaders who have used your product (thus serving as essentially a video testimonial page). Alternatively, your channel might showcase your latest products, or feature viral videos to increase brand awareness.
No matter its content, a company YouTube channel can benefit your marketing strategy in a number of ways. Along with the opportunity to tap into a huge audience base and improve your SEO, you can use the channel to build up your email list. This, in turn, will enable you to generate leads and further streamline outreach operations.
Social video (of which YouTube is the largest provider) is estimated to generate a staggering 1,200% more shares than content with images and text combined. As such, a strong YouTube marketing strategy should focus on creating viral content (content that is highly engaging, and therefore more likely to be shared). With a channel that features this type of content, you can dramatically increase your brand exposure.
The specific strategies you use for creating your videos will depend on the nature of your business and your unique goals. However, the following tips will help your channel make the best impact on potential leads.
Identify your Target Audience and Plan Your Videos
As with any type of marketing strategy, it’s important to begin by pinpointing your target audience. You should do this by first closely examining your customer base, and determining what products and services have garnered the most favourable responses from them. In addition, you’ll want to consider demographic factors (the age group of your audience, their primary locations, etc).
After you’ve identified your target audience, you’ll be well-prepared to start planning your video schedule. You should begin by creating a video that introduces your company and your channel, and which clearly showcases your unique selling points. Keep in mind that you’ll want most videos to be short and concise for maximum shareability, as attention spans are limited. In most cases, three to five minutes is the optimal range.
There are a variety of free, open-source tools that can help you plan your videos more efficiently. One notable example is Storyboarder, an intuitive, responsive platform that lets you upload images for scenes or draw them in directly. Storyboard integrates seamlessly with Photoshop, and lets you export your storyboards in multiple formats.
Once you’re ready to start creating videos, it’s again easy to find tools that will help. Lightworks is just one example; it’s a professional video editing software with a lot of useful features.
Create an Optimized YouTube Channel
Actually setting up a YouTube channel is extremely easy. All you need to do is log into YouTube with a Google account, click on your profile, and select My Channel. Enter in your personal and company details, and choose Create Channel. You’ll then be led through a list of steps for setting everything up.
Once your channel is up and running, however, you’ll need to ensure that it’s clearly branded. A smart way to do this is to create a channel banner that showcases your brand logo, as well as important contact information. You’ll also want to include buttons linking to your other social media accounts.
Open-source design tools like Inkspace provide an easy way to create your YouTube banner (as well as the artwork for your videos). Inkspace features a user-friendly control panel and plenty of editing features, and is ideal for creating glossy logos, animated effects, custom fonts, and much more.
As with your company website, you’ll want your YouTube channel and content to be primed for Search Engine Optimization (SEO). One easy way to do this is to add keywords to your video titles and descriptions, as well as to your channel’s About page. Including closed captions and tags on your videos will also help improve your channel’s SEO.
Integrate Your Website With Your Channel
Naturally, you’ll want your company YouTube channel to direct viewers to your website (and vice versa). This is particularly true if you’re running an e-commerce site, as viewers are more likely to make impulse purchasing decisions as a result of effective YouTube videos.
There are a variety of ways you can integrate your website with your YouTube channel. Of course, you can simply add a link to your site on your channel’s About page. However, you can also embed videos on your company website. You might even consider adding a YouTube widget to your website’s sidebar, so all your latest content will be on display.
Most open-source Content Management Systems (CMSs) offer plugins and extensions for easy YouTube integration. For example, the Video Gallery – YouTube Gallery plugin for WordPress lets you list your videos on any page of your site. This plugin also lets you customize the appearance of your gallery, and add pagination and lightbox effects, animations, background colors, and more.
If you are a Joomla! user, OSYouTube is a useful extension for rapidly embedding YouTube videos on your site. It also lets you customize your video player, adjusting the screen height and width to meet your requirements.
Engage With Your Audience and Track Your Analytics
Running a successful company YouTube channel means paying attention to viewer comments, and creating content that meets their needs. It’s also important to ensure that your viewers feel valued. As such, it’s worth while delegating social media managers to respond to (and moderate) visitor comments.
Creating content that actively engages your audience is also important. Your videos should directly encourage viewers to leave comments, pose questions, and make suggestions for future content. This will enable you to better hone the focus of your channel, and potentially improve conversion rates.
In addition to directly engaging with customers, it’s vital to analyze viewer behavior and determine what content is generating the most views. Tools such as YouTube Analytics help you gather these key metrics. YouTube Analytics analyzes user demographics, playback locations, traffic sources, audience retention, and more – so you can optimize your approach based on the results.
With an average of 1.3 billion active monthly users, YouTube is a medium your marketing strategy can’t afford to ignore. Fortunately, as we have seen, creating and maintaining an effective YouTube channel is relatively straightforward.
Do you have any questions about running a successful company YouTube channel? Let us know in the comments section below!