As a marketer, you’re continually looking for new ways to expand your customer base and engage with your audience. And you probably already know that social media is one of the best places to accomplish these goals. But have you expanded your social marketing strategy to YouTube?
With over 1 billion active users, YouTube allows you to reach a massive audience with video content. By getting creative and crafting videos that are engaging and informative, you’ll have a dependable and exciting way to grow your email list and establish your brand as an industry leader.
In fact, about 72% of B2B marketers are already using YouTube as a video marketing platform. Following in the footsteps of the top brands and tapping into the potential of YouTube can help give your business the growth it needs.
But to succeed, you need to take the right steps to ensure your content connects with viewers.
5 Steps for an Effective B2B YouTube Strategy
Step 1: Optimize Your YouTube Channel
There’s a lot more to YouTube than the video content you post—and one of the most important elements is your channel page, which serves as your profile page on the site.
Much like every other social platform, your channel page is where viewers will go to learn more about you and your company, so it’s crucial to set it up with as much detail as possible and keep it in-line with your branding strategy.
Here are some components to pay attention to while setting up your YouTube channel:
- Set your channel’s picture to your brand logo unless you are a personal brand, it which case use your headshot so that you’re easily recognizable and memorable.
- Create a custom banner for the top of the page.
- Write a thorough description in the “About” field. Make sure your viewers can quickly understand what your brand and YouTube channel are all about. This is also the perfect place to put a CTA or a link to your website.
- Organize your video content into dedicated playlists that will display on your channel page. This helps viewers find what they’re looking for quickly.
You’ll also want to take the time to optimize your channel for SEO purposes. Include industry keywords where you can. Since YouTube is included prominently in Google searches, an optimized channel can significantly increase your chances of ranking high in relevant searches.
Check out Adobe Creative Cloud for an excellent example of profile optimization.
Step 2: Execute Your Video Marketing Plan
Don’t just post videos at random. Formulate a plan which aligns your marketing goals with the needs of your target audience. Schedule video brainstorming sessions to come up with ideas that will pique the interest of your intended viewers.
Here are a few questions to consider:
- Who is your target audience?
- What types of videos do you want to create?
- How are your competitors attracting audiences in your niche?
- How will you advertise and promote your channel?
- How much (if anything) will you spend on promoting your videos?
Also, follow a schedule that ensures you are consistent with your video marketing efforts.
Social marketing expert, Jeff Bullas, tried YouTube marketing for one year. His team initially lacked consistency and generated a mere 16 to 30 views per day. Interestingly, they began posting two to three times per week and instantly gained over 1,000 views within a month. This proves that consistency is critical in growing your channel.
For example, Adobe Creative Cloud’s YouTube channel features interviews with industry professionals, design tutorials and live sessions. They consistently upload several videos within a day so their channel remains interesting and relevant to their viewers. This success has led to over 91 million views at the time of writing this article.
Step 3: Optimize Your YouTube Videos
The process of optimization doesn’t end with your channel. You’ll want to optimize every video you post to the channel to have the best chance at ranking high in searches and appealing to viewers. Here are a few things to keep in mind when posting your videos:
- Create a custom, eye-catching thumbnail for each video you post. This is what people see when they’re browsing the search results.
- Write an engaging and unique title. Try to include keywords whenever possible.
- Write a creative and thorough video description. Include keywords, a CTA, and a link to your website.
- Use plenty of tags that are relevant to your brand and the content of the video.
Since YouTube is one of the largest search engines in the world, taking the time to optimize all of your video content will greatly boost the chances that it gets found and ranks high in search results—both on YouTube and Google.
IBM optimizes all of its videos for SEO purposes, and so they should.
Step 4: Creatively Showcase Your Expertise and Experience
Don’t make your videos a sales pitch. Focus on creating content that showcases how you can help others and illustrate how your products and services can help them solve their problems.
Content that feels too salesy won’t perform well on YouTube, so it’s important to get your creative juices flowing and make unique content that will capture the viewer’s attention.
Here are a few examples of video styles that perform well on YouTube:
- Behind the scenes videos. Give your audience a chance to learn more about the people who make up your company and what a day in the life might look like.
- Product demonstrations. Your products are fantastic, so use videos to show people why. Don’t turn them into a commercial – just give your audience a look at what sets you apart from the competition.
- Testimonials. Do you have satisfied customers who are willing to talk about how your product worked for them? Ask them to do a video testimonial. It’s an engaging way to build trust with your audience.
- How-to videos. What is your audience interested in learning? What types of questions are they asking? Cover these in your videos.
Thankfully you don’t need a lot of professional recording equipment and editing software to film videos that are high quality. Most of the equipment you need is what you probably own. If you don’t have a dedicated camera for filming, your smartphone likely has a camera-equipped to film in HD or 4K.
When it comes to editing software, most computers come with basic editing software that is more than capable of getting the job done.
If you aren’t confident in your filming skills, there are many tutorials and books available that will ease you into the process. You’ll be able to get the hang of titles, transitions, and other basic video elements in no time.
There are a few key items you can invest in that can significantly enhance the production value of your content.
- Tripods. With a tripod, you’ll be able to make sure every shot you take is steady and eliminate the shakiness that many videos shot by hand tend to have.
- Microphone. A high-quality microphone will allow you to do clear voice-overs that your audience can understand and will eliminate the hollow audio that sometimes comes along with using the built-in microphones on phones or computers.
Step 5: Utilize Analytics to Improve Your YouTube Strategy
To understand how your videos are impacting your viewers, you need to monitor your analytics and understand what your strengths and weaknesses are. Once you do, you’ll start to see trends and reactions, and you can better gauge how your target audience is interacting with your content.
The Most Important YouTube Statistic
When it comes to analytics, YouTube is quite different from other platforms. On social platforms, you’re probably used to looking out for statistics like likes, shares, follows, and retweets. On YouTube, you can still like and share content, but other statistics make an even bigger impact on your channel.
YouTube wants its users to like the content they see and engage with it, so the most crucial statistic you’re going to see is your viewer retention. This is a measure of how long people who click on your videos watch them. YouTube values the quality of the content its users produce, and higher quality content that keeps viewers interested is more likely to rank high in search results.
To achieve the best viewer retention rate, you’ll need to create content that not only inspires people to click on it, but also encourages them to keep watching.
Video Marketing: Learn and Improve
Understanding your analytics is one of the most important parts of optimizing your YouTube marketing strategy. Monitor your analytics regularly and learn from what you observe.
Are a lot of people clicking on your video, but not watching for long? You might need to adjust your content. Are not enough people clicking on your videos? You might want to revamp your title and optimization strategy.
No matter what your statistics show you, don’t shy away from experimenting and trying new things out regularly. This can give you some great insight into what your audience wants to see more of and what they might respond to down the line.
YouTube is the perfect place to give your B2B business an outlet for video marketing content. With the right strategies, you can reach a large audience and expose your content to new viewers. Optimizing your YouTube channel and your videos, creating engaging content, and learning from analytics will allow you to grow your following and increase your new leads.