The video-sharing website YouTube was launched in 2005, but it may be one of the most underutilized business marketing tools on the web today. Free to both businesses and consumers, it has the potential for almost unlimited reach among web users. Some businesses have launched their entire companies on YouTube marketing strategies. One such company is Dollar Shave Club, which created a humorous promotional video that quickly went viral. This company sends shaving razors to subscribers on a monthly basis at a discounted price. While this may not seem like culture-changing innovation, Dollar Shave Club just received $9.8 million in venture capital to expand internationally. This comes less than a year after its original YouTube video debuted. The company has no marketing department, no sales reps, and no form of promotion other than Youtube videos. While these results aren’t the norm, this potentially profitable channel should be considered when developing your marketing strategy.
To determine if YouTube should be part of your marketing mix, you can start by simply exploring the content on YouTube. Once familiar with the medium and types of content it offers consumers, consider what your own customers are interested in, from problems that need solutions to new products or services. If you’re already blogging, consider the adage “if you can blog about it, you can make a video about it.” A number of small business owners have experienced some success with creating how-to videos.
The next step in implementing a successful YouTube strategy is getting the video seen. It is important to be realistic and set achievable goals, such as an initial goal of 100 views. It is important to maximize the exposure of the video to help achieve the maximum amount of views. This can be done through optimizing the title and description of the video. Using keywords in the title and description will help viewers to find your video on YouTube and through search engines. YouTube is owned by Google, so videos can rank well in search engine results. You should also post your YouTube videos on all of your social media platforms and on web pages. Videos played on a company’s webpage still count for the total number of views on a video, which will help the video to climb in the search engine rankings.
If you want to expand your video marketing strategy, begin building a brand on YouTube. This can be done by creating your own YouTube channel with a custom background. You should also set your first video to autoplay when someone comes to your channel because this continues to raise the play counts of videos and increase their exposure. You should watermark all of your videos and include a closing branded screen showing users where they could find more videos and information. This will help move viewers further down the sales funnel.
YouTube, like every marketing platform, should be tracked for ROI. While YouTube is free, it does cost money to produce videos and have them work on the site. Tracking ROI for YouTube can be a challenge, but it is possible.
Ultimately, YouTube is best used to build awareness for your company. This is the the first stage in the sales funnel, and is often one of the most important. Building awareness with consumers helps them to develop an interest in your company and could eventually turn them into paying customers. YouTube also has special analytics and features that allow businesses to see what parts of their videos viewers are most interested in. These analytics show what parts of the video users are rewinding and watching again, and parts during which users are leaving the page. Determining the true ROI from YouTube has to be determined by individual businesses. The best way to do this would be to track the number of views on the videos, and to see how many visitors came to your website from YouTube through the use of Google Analytics. Tracking traffic from YouTube to the business’s site lets you see how many potential customers your videos are bringing in.
Small business marketing and related technology is constantly growing and changing. The right use of tools such as YouTube are one way to take advantage of a powerful marketing resource at a low cost.