In a word — search. YouTube is the number-two search engine and the largest video hosting platform on the Web. What’s number one? Google, of course. But who owns YouTube? Google does. Oh, and it doesn’t hurt that YouTube is the number two most popular site on the Internet. Guess what number one still is.
How big is big?
According to Merchdope.com content producers upload three hundred hours of video every minute! And content consumers watch almost five billion videos every day. This alone should convince you that you cannot ignore YouTube as a marketing channel.
YouTube can also help with your SEO (search engine optimization). This is the holy grail of search. If your content is optimized for search, you will be discovered when your products or services are searched for.
YouTube not only allows you to post cat videos. YouTube allows you to create a mini, branded site through its Channels platform. Upload your videos, group them in playlists, add links to your website and your social media sites. And, in the About section of your Channel, you can fill out an online profile detailing your company’s mission, location, and products and services. In addition, you can generate subscribers to your Channel. These subscribers will be notified when you push new content live.
Is YouTube a social platform?
Yes, YouTube videos support likes, comments, and shares.
YouTube also allows you to optimize for SEO. They allow for embedded tags that tell search algorithms about your content. YouTube also provides a tool for content producers to upload a written transcript of your content. Transcripts become searchable guides for Google to index. You can also add sub-titles, which become searchable as well.
What are the details?
YouTube allows you to input: a title, a description, adjust privacy settings, collect content into playlists, select an optimal thumbnail that summarizes your content in a single frame, include searchable tags, add intra video hot spots that can launch the user outside the YouTube platform, and add a CTA (call to action) at the end of your video.
As you’d imagine from a Google product, YouTube’s analytics are robust, offering per-video information on reach, engagement, audience and even revenue if you turn on YouTube’s revenue-sharing engine. Metrics include YouTube views, watch time, audience retention, impressions, click-through rates, traffic sources, and subscriber demographics.
YouTube offers an in-platform video editing toolset, but these are definitely prosumer-level tools.
YouTube is a world within a world. Don’t exclude yourself.
For expert video content production services, please contact Capitola Media.
Promote a new blog post, engage with your audience, or even drive viewers to a landing page with Twitter videos. When teasing a blog post or piece of content on Twitter, always keep your video short and sweet – brevity is a core factor on this channel.
Short clips that are easy to consume tend to perform the best. Try pinning your video to the top of your profile for some added exposure.
If you want to get a little more experimental with using video on Twitter, you can try making short, custom videos to engage with your audience. These highly personal, one-to-one response videos are an awesome way to make your brand more human while building personal connections with your engaged followers.
Facebook and Instagram
When you walk onto a bus or train for your morning commute, how many people are scrolling through their smartphones to see the news and content they’ve missed overnight? Pretty much everyone – but not everyone is wearing headphones.
For this reason, make sure your video works with or without sound. BuzzFeed is the master of silent auto-play — just take a look at their Facebook page. The reason their silent auto-play strategy works so well is because of this rise in mobile video views and the way people scroll through and consume content on social media. They often post quick recipes or quick how-to’s, often with easy-to-follow imagery or helpful text to describe what is happening.
Facebook also favors longer videos in their newsfeed algorithm. The goal with this shift is to better surface videos that are most relevant to the viewer.
So what does this mean for you? Don’t panic; this just confirms what we already know is true. Creating the “right” content for your audience is more important than churning out it out for the sake of it.
Secondly, upload videos directly to Facebook. Facebook continues to make a compelling case for uploading your videos natively to the platform — the primary reason being that your content will be seen by more eyes.
Brand awareness videos that are light-hearted and entertaining tend to perform well on Facebook for this very reason – their algorithm takes into account a user’s previous video-related actions when determining what videos to show them on subsequent visits. Make a video that’s super relevant to your audience, share it on Facebook, and see what type of engagement you can drum up!
Lastly, grab attention instantly… and keep it. Did you know that Instagram was the first social channel to initiate silent, auto-playing videos? It’s true! Shortly after, Facebook followed suit, so it’s safe to say that catering to this type of video when creating content for social media is the way to go. It might seem daunting to try and grab someone’s attention so fast and without sound, but here are a few best practices you can use to make things easier:
Start off your video with motion to grab your viewer’s attention while they’re scrolling through the feed.
Videos that feature people speaking are great for landing pages or your website, but try to stick to visually stimulating videos for Facebook and Instagram (unless you’re going Live, which we’ll talk more about later).
Incorporate text or include captions so that viewers can follow along with or without audio.
On YouTube, post with a specific strategy in mind. Think of YouTube as a giant library of video content where people go to either educate themselves or to be entertained. YouTube reports over 1 billion unique users per month – sounds like a social media gold-mine, right? Well, sometimes, yes.
There are, however, a few questions you should ask yourself before going forth with posting every video you’ve ever made to your YouTube account:
- Can you make the specific video content they’re searching for there?
- Do you need these prospects to end up on your website?
If you’re purely seeking some broad brand awareness, YouTube could be an awesome channel for you? (Just don’t expect much in the way of driving tons of traffic back to your site.)
Establish and grow a dedicated channel of subscribers by creating informative, educational content that is in high demand, and you’ll start to see some real success!
For a long time, LinkedIn was one of the less video-friendly social networks, that’s changed. Users can now upload videos, and brands (whether that’s your company brand or personal brand) can now get even more creative with the content they share.
Considering this fairly recent development, what should you be considering when creating and uploading LinkedIn videos? LinkedIn recommends four different themes for creating video to be used on its platform:
1. Show it.
If you’re in a fast-paced industry that’s always evolving, brands and thought leaders can take the lead by showcasing new technologies in video format, or providing tutorials on how a new physical product works.
2. Transport them there.
Video is the perfect medium for giving audiences a taste of what it’s like to really be somewhere. The most obvious use case here is industry conferences and events. If your company hosts them, uploading videos of the event to LinkedIn is a great way to demonstrate the buzz you’re creating in your industry.
If you’re working on your personal brand, bringing snapshots of the things you’re learning at the event to your connections can be the perfect way to help your community or develop your own thought leadership by sharing your perspective of everything that’s happening there.
3. Teach it.
If you have a time-saving hack to share or have learned something new that might help other people in your network, video is a super effective medium for sharing that knowledge. If you’re thinking about this on behalf of your company, ask yourself what your buyer personas often struggle with, and see if you can teach them a solution in video format.
4. Share it.
This is one for the opinionated amongst us. If you have thoughts on a recent announcement or piece of industry news, let people know what you’re thinking in a video! Likewise, if your company has some news, or has made a recent key hire that your followers and wider industry would want to hear about, a video is a personable take that can be used alongside the traditional press release.
Of course, you don’t have to stick to these four themes — get creative and test to see what works best for you. Lastly, upload videos directly to LinkedIn.
Here’s how to create and upload a video for LinkedIn:
• Go to the LinkedIn app and tap the video icon in the share box in the top right-hand corner.
• Select the video icon to record now, or choose a pre-recorded video from your phone’s camera roll.
• If you chose to record now, you’ll begin recording a video inside the LinkedIn app itself.
• Add a description to your video to sit alongside it when you post.
• Hit Post and your video will start to appear in your followers’ feeds.
Live Video: Facebook & Instagram
While Instagram’s traditional features let users record short video clips and post them online afterward, new live features on Facebook and Instagram take a different approach, allowing users to post live video streams of what they’re doing at that very moment.
When you’re setting up videos for Facebook Live or Instagram Live, make sure you’re following the steps in the first section of this guide. If you do this, you’ll have much higher quality live videos, which will set you apart from other live videos being shown. In addition to these steps, we have a few more things to keep in mind.
Keep in mind that your live video will be broadcast from the platform (Facebook or Instagram) itself, so that’s where you’ll be promoting your broadcasts primarily. Do some research on your Facebook/Instagram audiences to find out when they’re most engaged with your posts.
Even if some of your followers miss out, the app will save your videos to the app by default (although you can delete them manually if you want to), and they’ll be available for viewing by your followers after the fact.
As for the length of your video broadcasts, remember that most people’s attention spans are fairly short — especially on mobile. If your broadcasts aren’t captivating from the get-go, users will likely stop viewing your stream.
Spend time coming up with a compelling title.
It’s vital that your title describes what your video is and why people should either tune in now or replay your stream later (up to 24 hours). Here are a few styles that make effective titles:
Straight-Forward: Sometimes, the most effective title will tell people exactly what you’re going doing in the video. For example, Elijah Wood once posted a live video with the title “Jellyfish” whilst visiting the aquarium — which is exactly what the video showed; nothing more, nothing less.
Exclusive: A title that lets users believe they’re seeing exclusive footage can be super compelling. For example, you might broadcast a video titled, “I’m live from my show!” for all the viewers at home. Another version of this could be “A Backstage Look Into…” or something along those lines.
Unique: Broadcasting something unique, rare, or just plain weird? Own it. One of my personal favorites was, “My Fridge: 100 Viewers and I’ll Drop Eggs.”
Respond to comments live.
One of the coolest features on Facebook is that people who are watching your stream in real time can comment and “like” the broadcast (which show up as hearts, like on Instagram). Other viewers are able to see these comments and the number of hearts your video has. Acknowledge or even respond to these comments out loud on the live broadcast to encourage engagement and make the experience feel like more of a two-way conversation.
Experiment with use cases.
Since Facebook and Instagram Live features are still relatively new, there aren’t solidly defined ways to use it, especially for brands. This is a unique opportunity for you to experiment with different ways of using it and what type of content your audience likes most.
Facebook Live lets you analyze a few key stats you’ll want to keep track of while you’re figuring out what works. Once your video ends, the app lets you see how many live viewers you had, how many viewers replayed your video, and how many hearts your video received (this number updates automatically as users continue “liking” your video from the time it ends until it expires).
Finally, as you experiment with different recording environments, keep in mind that background noise is easily picked up by microphones — so you’ll want to make sure you’re in a relatively controlled environment if doing a more serious or professional broadcast.
How to Use Video Throughout the Flywheel
Too often, companies jump at the opportunity to create their first video. They spend tons of money on an explainer video for their homepage, but as soon as the project is complete, all future video ambitions screech to a halt.
On the other hand, plenty of businesses churn out a slew of social videos. But since they’ve simply replicated fads they’ve seen, their videos hardly consider their audience’s challenges or habits.
Considering the time, money, and resources involved, video marketing can’t be an impulsive guessing game. Instead, you need to create a comprehensive video marketing strategy that applies to every facet of your flywheel. This means thinking in the context of the inbound methodology.
The inbound methodology is the marketing and sales approach focused on attracting customers through content and interactions that are relevant and helpful. Each video you create should acknowledge your audience’s challenges and provide a solution. Looking at the big picture, this content guides consumers through the journey of becoming aware of, evaluating, and purchasing your product or service.
Video marketing buyers journey
In the following sections, we’ll cover the types of videos you should create for each stage in the image above. To start, plan to create at least two videos for each. Don’t forget to include call-to-actions to help lead your audience through their purchase journey and into the role of “promoter.” Over time, you can improve based on conversion rates and the content gaps you discover.
Video marketing funnel to flywheel
The first step of the inbound methodology is to attract — or turn strangers into visitors. Consumers at this stage are identifying their challenges and deciding whether or not they should seek out a solution. Therefore, the videos you create should empathize with their problems and introduce a possible solution in your product or service.
Ultimately, the goal of this kind of video is to expand reach and build trust. Because you are looking to garner shares for your video, it’ll likely be more entertaining and emotion-evoking than educational. But, you should still provide enough information to associate yourself as an authority on the topic.
Examples of videos in the “attract” stage include snackable social videos that show off your brand’s personality, thought leadership videos that establish you as a source of industry news and insight, brand films the share your values and mission, or explainers and how-to videos that provide relevant tips for solving your audience’s pain point.
Discover 75 tips for creating, sharing, and optimizing video for Facebook and Instagram.
For any “attract” video, avoid speaking too much about your product. Instead, let your brand values and personality be your north star(s). Finally, because these videos can live on a variety of channels, keep in mind the strategies of each platform. For example, a Facebook video might have a square aspect ratio and text animations for soundless viewers.
Now that you’ve attracted video viewers and website visitors, the next step is to convert these visitors into leads. With most inbound marketing content, this means collecting some sort of contact information via a form. Video can aid this process by visualizing a solution to the buyer’s problem, whether that’s before the form on a landing page or as the offer itself. Overall, the goal of this kind of video is to educate and excite.
“Convert” videos may include a webinar filled with tactical advice, product demos sent via email, landing page promotional videos, case studies, or more in-depth explainer and how-to videos. For example, while an “attract” video might provide a quick tip for nailing a sales pitch, a “convert” video could be an animated explainer video that breaks down the inbound sales methodology.
You’ve attracted a new audience with your videos and converted the right visitors into leads. Now’s the time to close these leads into customers. Yet, as important as this stage is, “close” videos are often the most overlooked by marketers and salespeople.
At this point, the consumer is weighing their options and deciding on the purchase. Therefore, the goal of this kind of video is to make your audience visualize themselves using your product or service — and thriving. There’s a reason 4X as many customers would rather watch a video about a product than read about it. Videos are able to display functionality and leverage emotions in ways a product description never could.
Great “close” videos include testimonials of customers with relatable stories, in-depth product demos, culture videos that sell viewers on your quality of service, or even personalized videos that explain exactly how your product could help their business
A purchase may have been made, but there’s still a lot of video can do to leverage the post-conversion stage of your flywheel. During the “delight stage” of the inbound methodology, your goal is to continue providing remarkable content to users that makes their interaction with your product or service as incredible as possible.
It’s also in hopes that they’ll tell their connections about their experience or up-sell themselves. Therefore, the goal of this type of video is to encourage your customers to embrace your brand and become brand evangelists.
Your first opportunity to delight comes directly after the purchase. Consider sending a thank you video to welcome them into the community or an onboarding video to get them rolling with their new purchase. Then, build out a library of educational courses or product training videos to cater to consumers who prefer self-service or simply want to expand their expertise.
Defining Your Goals and Analyzing Results
At this point, you know how to create a video and where to host it. You’re ready to get started, right? Not quite. Before you dive in, you need to define your video goals and identify the best metrics for determining whether you’ve accomplished those goals.
Before launching any marketing campaign, it’s important to determine your primary video goal. This could be to increase brand awareness, engagement, or even conversions for a free trial. It’s crucial to pick out just one or two goals for each video. When you define more than that, your video will seem unfocused, making it difficult for viewers to determine what they should do next.
When thinking of your goals, be sure to keep your buyer persona and target audience in mind. How old are they? Where do they live? What are their interests? How do they typically consume media? What stage of the buyer’s journey are they in?
All of these questions can help determine what type of video you should make and where you should post it. For example, if your target audience is not familiar with your company, you probably want to make a video that focuses on brand awareness before producing an in-depth, product video. You’ll also want to host your video on a site that already has a large reach, like YouTube.
Next, let’s talk about metrics. Understanding these will equip you to define and measure your success and set your goals. When you post a video, it’s easy to get obsessed with one metric — view count. While view count can be an important metric, there are many others that may be more relevant to your campaign.
Below are some popular metrics you’ll see when you publish and track video.
View Count: View count is the number of times your video has been viewed — also referred to as reach. This metric is great to track if your goal is to increase brand awareness and have your content seen by as many people as possible. However, it’s important to remember that every video hosting platform measures a view differently. For example, a view on YouTube is 30 seconds while a view on Facebook is only 3 seconds. Be sure to read the fine print before reporting on your video view count.
Play Rate: Play rate is the percentage of people who played your video divided by the number of impressions it received. This metric helps determine how relevant or appealing your video is to your audience. If thousands of people see your video, but only a handful of people play it, it’s probably time to optimize your content.
Social Sharing and Comments: If you’re on social media, you’re probably familiar with sharing and commenting. Social shares and comments are good indicators of how relevant your content is with your target audience. If a viewer watches your video and takes the time to share it with their network, you probably created a great piece of content. Social shares are also important because the more times your video is shared, the more it’ll be viewed. If your goal is to reach a lot of people, social shares is a good metric to track.
Video Completions: If you took the time to make a video … you probably want people to watch the whole thing, right? A video completion is the number of times a video is played in its entirety. This metric can be more reliable than view count when trying to determine your video’s success.
Completion Rate: Completion rate is the number of people who completed your video divided by the number of people who played it. Completion rate and other engagement metrics are a great way to gauge a viewer’s reaction to your video. Do you have a low completion rate? Are people all dropping off at a certain point? This might be a sign that your video content is not resonating with your target audience.
Click-Through Rate: Click-through rate (CTR) is the number of times your call-to-action (CTA) is clicked divided by the number of times it’s viewed. CTR is a great indicator of how effective your video is at encouraging people to take your desired action. If your CTR is low, consider revising the design or copy of your CTA.
Conversion Rate: Conversion rate is the number of times visitors completed your desired action divided by the number of clicks on your CTA. If your goal is to have your viewers complete an action like signing up for a free trial, try adding a video to your landing page to see if your conversion rate increases.
Bounce Rate and Time-On-Page: Are you thinking about adding a video to a web page? Take note of the page bounce rate and the amount of time people spent on the page before you add the video. Be sure to check the metrics after you place the video to see if changes the way people interact with your other content.
Finally, what about your video social media marketing strategy? How do you measure that?
Measuring performance on each social media platform provides valuable information, especially to determine whether video really is the right content type for your audience on each platform.
Across all platforms, in addition to the metrics above, be sure to measure views over time to determine the life of your videos. You may find that videos need to be refreshed every few weeks, or months, in order to stay relevant with your audience. You also want to always be tracking and comparing engagement of your videos. This will help you determine which topics encourage the most sharing, and therefore will have a higher and longer lifetime value.
Ready, Set, Action!
I’m guessing you’re feeling a little overwhelmed right now. Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Video editing and marketing can seem daunting at first, but with a little practice and patience, you can easily produce high-quality content that is unique to your brand.
With 71% of consumers watching more video online than they were a year ago, brands can no longer ignore their growing popularity. Thankfully, creating great content has never been easier!
Try turning a written blog into a video or create a product tutorial. Using video to showcase information in a new, interesting way is sure to interest and delight your audience. Pick up a camera, start filming, and watch your engagement levels increase. It’s time to make video a key part of your marketing strategy!