You might think that right off the bat that this is just a joy ride of an article, especially for me since I am indeed managing a couple of channels on YouTube. But trust me, behind the scenes, videos are a big part of how you can boost your brand or business. And all of it still has that good old-fashioned SEO flavour to it.
I say that confidently because I’ve handled tons of accounts that has a few competitors that has utilized a few YouTube video ads. Something that, unfortunately, MY account veered away from. It would have been a great edge to our campaign – but you’re not here to listen to my sad rants about my old accounts. Instead, we’ll be checking out what you should be doing to have an edge against your competitors.
First of all, no, you absolutely do not have to act like me or Pewdiepie, or any other vloggers out there, to have a channel and be successful on that platform (not saying my channel is successful though). You could try that, but the type of channel you should be doing is something that is built for the sole purpose of boosting your business.
Let’s take for example a YouTube series me and my Dad enjoys called Roadkill.
Roadkill is a sort of a Magazine offshoot (that me and my Dad also collect) called Hot Rod Magazine.
The show is basically a wild, unscripted adventure of finding old junk cars, or even just old abandoned cars in general, and making them run again. Then the two hosts would either need to take the vehicle on a road trip back home or race it in an event.
It’s a very chaotic and actually a fun program to watch. Since they have a limited amount of time and money to rebuild a car.
Businesswise, the program refreshed the notoriety of the magazine company and they gained more and newer fans across all America – also eventually to Australia, the UK, and Asia too (since me and Dad would marathon this on YouTube).
Another result of the show’s success is that they eventually got to publish their own Magazine. The company earned a lot on events filled with a combination of old and young fans. Hot Rod magazine wasn’t only for the old fans from the 50’s and 60’s, they have become a part of our modern culture. Eventually they got more and more sponsorships from big automotive giants like Dodge and Subaru.
But let’s say your company isn’t really into cars at all. Let’s say you’re a company selling insurance services online. Pretty boring, you might admit. Yes actually, but that doesn’t mean we can’t make it exciting.
Let’s take for example this ad that AXA insurance did last year.
My initial take on it is that this must be a new disaster film with cool effects. Which got me a little excited because I love movies like that. So I didn’t skip the ad, but was surprised with the quality work and cool story line, and they manage to focus the story about the insurance company.
It only means one thing: it has an impact on me, which means it’s a good thing. Getting the attention of more people by utilizing good cinematography and a compelling premise, all on a 2 minute long ad, can create a strong marketing boost.
Though this doesn’t directly affect the ranking, it affects the popularity of a business or brand. Therefore, these YouTube campaigns are boosting your marketing reach in general. Check how AXA is doing with say, a keyword like “car insurance”. A keyword that’s got a really high level of competition.
Beside’s the fact that they’ve been around for a while, they are willing to go beyond and reach out audiences on other platforms, like on YouTube for example. You don’t really need a big budget. Though, it can really help a lot. You can do interviews like this:
Yet another one from AXA. Interviews like this is like having customer testimonials on your site, making it more credible and trusted.
With that said, you might be eager to create your channel now. That’s cool, welcome to the modern world. You’ve accepted change.
To start, you’ll need to have a separate Google account, to make it easy. If your company has a main Gmail account, you can use that. Or if you want things all separate and stuff, not gonna judge, you can have a separate account just for your YouTube channel.
But don’t run on it too fast. Unlike a normal channel, don’t click on the “create channel” right away. Look for the “Use Business or Other Name” link. This will make you go to a “create a Brand” part. After that, all the other following parts will be much like when you get your own account on YouTube or G+. Place in your channel icon, which is like your display picture and channel art which serves as your banner.
Not that you’re all set, it’s time to move on to the next phase which is actually creating your videos.
Here comes the SEO bit. Much like writing articles, you need to focus of your video on relevance. It has to be relevant. The video is the content in this case. So creating a proper Title and Description for it is a very important thing.
Video Titles need to be clear and compelling. But please don’t write it like a Meta Title. That’s the only difference. This is a Video, after all. With these videos though, you can actually do the whole click bait thing. YouTube isn’t as touchy feely with those, it’s all part of the whole compelling title part.
Next is, you would want to make sure that you get to write descriptions. YouTube will only show the first 2 or 3 lines, so make sure you get to describe your video, or the plot of it, in a concise manner. If it still fits you can also include in all the important links you want your viewers to go to. Sometimes, on the videos themselves, you can include annotations and links. But sometimes you can also do an outro or a message on the end saying to “check out the links on the description below”.
Tags are also a big part here; YouTube still utilizes it. And because it’s there, you need to make sure that you are utilizing it properly. This is how your videos can be found after all. So, better make the best out of it.
Upon editing your video, you will see the scary complicated stuff. But don’t run away from it; you actually need those to make sure your video won’t be lost on the weird side of YouTube. One of those parts is the Category settings. Just pick the correct category that fits your video the most and you’re all set.
Next is getting a really good thumbnail. And this also falls to the whole click bait-y thing. Though, don’t overdo click bait types of thumbnails. You’re not a vlogger after all, you’re here for business. You can also pick a frame from the video itself. If you’re having a hard time looking for a good thumbnail, YouTube will automatically offer for you.
A neat trick is to utilize the subtitles feature. Not only does this help your viewers, but this also lets you highlight a few keywords you might have included in the scripts or statements made within the video. It’s much better if you get to upload an actual SRT file.
Lastly, the end screen annotations. This basically helps you place in your Subscribe button and playlists. The more subscribers you get, the more people can see your videos, the more popular your business and brand becomes.
And with all that, having a channel on YouTube helps your business tap a new market and gain more attention. With the videos, you get to actually invite people to check out your site. This is another important edge you can have against your competitors. The trick is that you need to do it now. Because it’s not like it’s a new idea.