As the most popular video-sharing site, YouTube offers many possibilities for both individuals and businesses alike. People visit YouTube not only to have fun, but also to learn and connect with brands. In fact, brand-based videos from companies such as McDonald’s, Toyota, Coca-Cola, and others have skyrocketed in recent years, demonstrating the marketing potential of YouTube. What is more, statistics show that YouTube users engage, embed, and share about ten times more than other social media users.
If used right, YouTube can provide not only visually stimulating content but also the one that genuinely engages the audience. Whether you are creating videos yourself or hiring a video production company to do it for you, here are some tips that can help you effectively use YouTube to engage your audience and achieve your marketing purposes.
THINK OF CREATIVE ADVERTISING
First off, you can use YouTube to showcase your products and service, but don’t do it in a boring way. Most users don’t want to spend twenty minutes watching a video that blandly describes products and services – it will make them either yawn or, more probably, stop watching altogether. However, the showcasing of products works well as long as you do it in a creative and exciting way. So, when making videos for YouTube, you should go out of your way to do something interesting and innovative. For example, a video posted by the Dollar Shave Club demonstrates how creative advertising can make a seemingly boring product come alive. This short, creative and compelling video went viral and boosted sales for the company. Watch it and learn:
TEACH YOUR CUSTOMERS
Among other things, YouTube users spend time on the site looking for answers they need for the problems they face. Interestingly, the YouTube search engine ranks second in popularity among Internet users (behind only Google), many of whom come looking for lessons on how to use the products they have bought. Therefore, you can use YouTube to provide fantastic customer service in the form of educational material for the proper use of goods and services. The information in the video can help customers learn and get maximum value for the money they spend.
Companies that create video tutorials for their products take advantage of the opportunity to improve customer satisfaction and reduce the workload for their customer support representatives. Apart from the very videos, YouTube comments give companies another way to interact with customers. When something in a video seems unclear, and someone posts a question, the business can demonstrate customer service excellence by taking the time to respond.
GO BEHIND THE SCENES
What you can also do with your marketing goals in mind is create fun and informative YouTube videos that take viewers behind the scenes of your business. By going beyond product demonstrations and showing viewers what goes on in the background, you create an intimacy with your customers. Such a tactic allows you to showcase the people and processes that customers rarely see, boosting employee morale and establishing the company as one that espouses openness, teamwork, and trust. Take a look at how Louis Vuitton Savoir-Faire created an excellent behind-the-scenes video that added value to its brand:
DO IT FOR OTHERS, NOT YOURSELF!
All businesses should build the mindset that dictates that they only use YouTube to provide value to customers, not themselves. Old Spice provides an excellent example of a customer-oriented YouTube presence – they are a company that uses clever videos to engage their customers and grow their audience. What they first did was create a video based on a customer´s Tweet:
With this video that they uploaded on their official YouTube channel, the company demonstrated a responsiveness that endeared them to the online community. They also responded to YouTube and Facebook comments, creating a commanding social presence where other corporations had failed. In some cases, Old Spice videos went viral, increasing the company´s sales to a great extent. Take Old Spice as an inspiring example, and try to do something creative and people-oriented yourself.
USE FAN-GENERATED VIDEO CONTENT
Fan-generated video content can help build brand value. When companies see social media comments and then create videos to address the needs of their audience, they endear themselves to their customers and encourage even more social media engagement. Hootsuite has some excellent suggestions for leveraging user-generated content for marketing purposes.
When possible, try to encourage customers to post videos of the products they have bought. Such videos usually carry more weight with the community because of their independent nature. Also, customers gain a sense of participation and meaning when they can contribute to the lives of others who have bought similar goods. User-generated branded content especially resonates with the millennial generation.
When you commit to using YouTube as a branding and marketing tool, try to produce as much content as possible. With an available duration range of thirty seconds to twenty minutes, you can publish a variety of video content that keeps customers glued to their channel. A healthy mix of diary-based videos, interviews, mini documentaries, tutorials, fun facts, and humor can enliven any business in the eye of their viewers. Nintendo sets a good example for efficiently using a large number of various videos to captivate an audience. For example, a video entitled “Five Fun Facts” animates the history of Nintendo from the perspective of a well-meaning fan:
While you don’t need to reach the same level as such a big company, do try to offer your customers some variety.
INTEGRATE YOUR CHANNEL
Last but not least, remember to integrate your YouTube channel with your website and social media profiles to get maximum online exposure. You can easily embed video content into Web pages to reinvigorate boring sites, and you can also create text-based links to YouTube content and share it on Facebook, Twitter and other social media. This way, your YouTube activities get more exposure and a larger audience.
As a video repository and a powerful marketing tool, YouTube offers almost unlimited potential for businesses that want to market their products and services. Videos posted to YouTube drive traffic, increase search engine visibility, establish expertise, and engage customers. By following the tips listed above, you can create great YouTube video content and incorporate it into an effective marketing strategy.
BIO: As a freelance writer and copywriter, Natalie Smith enjoys writing about topics related to online marketing, entrepreneurship, social media, and business in general. She is reachable @Natalie Smith