A study on optimising your video content & YouTube channels
1. Overview Founded in February 2005, YouTube allows billions of people to discover watch and share originally-created videos. YouTube provides a forum for people to connect, inform, and inspires others across the globe and acting as a distribution platform for original content creators and advertisers large and small.
1.1 Power of YouTube 72 hours of video content uploaded every minute More video is uploaded to YouTube in 60 days than three major US networks created in 60 years YouTube is localised in 53 countries and across 61 different languages Using Google automatic speech recognition, videos can be translated in 51 different languages An auto share tweet generates, on average, seven new YouTube sessions
1.2 User data Over one billion views per day 70% of YouTube’s traffic comes from outside the USA Since 2009, daily minutes per user has risen by 55% Average time a users spends on YouTube is 15 minutes per day Share rate on a mobile device is 24% higher than desktop Traffic from mobile devices tripled in 2011
It is now possible to see trend data for YouTube using Google Trends, which can better your timing of when to publish content or when you are likely to receive a higher level of engagement. Once you have filtered down your search requirements you can also slice by region or category as well.
2. The basics
Decide what you have to offer and the best videos to display this. Market research will help you find what your potential customers / viewers want to see or are currently searching for. In the world of blogging and social media, people are connecting more on a personal level and so, producing a commercial video may not gain the response you want or need.
Examples; if you’re a make-up artist show others how YOU use your make up. Give them tips, copy celebrity styles and have a friendly tone – record the videos as if you we’re talking to a friend. If baking is your thing, then record YOU baking and most of all keep “bloopers” in. We live in a society where people enjoy watching others make mistakes. Remember the guy who free dived from space? When he entered the earth’s atmosphere alive, 4 million people logged off.
When planning on recording your videos, you can of course spend a lot of money on expensive equipment but with the development of cameras and smart phones you can invest a little of your funds and keep in line with the personal touch. With the average smart phone you can record, edit and upload to YouTube without hiring a video editor and unnecessary expenses.
3. Video content – What really works for brand content
Cat Jones of Unruly said that no matter what the sector, there are two things that are crucial to making a viral video. “The intensity of the psychological response people feel when they see the ad and the strength of the social motivation – the reason that they have to share”. If a brand can make someone feel something strongly (whether that feeling is overwhelmingly positive or negative) then that will give them a good reason to pass it on.
3.1 Be funny
Due to it being over used and people attempting to be funny, the audience has become quite discerning.
This video “Dumb Ways To Die” (http://dumbwaystodie.com/) promotes Metro Trains but it isn’t direct and leaves the mention of trains until the end. It received 42 million views and 3 million shares. It’s effortlessly funny and touches on topics many of us would discuss or hear about
Allowing people to reminisce on old memories they have, you can make them feel warmth and/or comfort within your brand. This IE (http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/internet-explorer/download-ie) video of “Child of the 90’s” received more than 15 million views in less than two months.
3.3 The arousal factor
A very successful example of this is the Abercrombie & Fitch’s (http://www.abercrombie.co.uk) “Call Me Maybe” video which received 19 million views and shared 2.7 million times
3.4 Knowledge and Exhilaration
This video promotes the new GoPro HERO3 (http://gopro.com/) camera and received over 17 million views. The mention of the product can be seen at the beginning of the video and you see small shots of it being used throughout the content. The video itself is action packed and some of the shots are very up close and personal, getting the viewer involved in the action.
4. Get your brand message across whilst avoiding the corporate tone
Many YouTube users add links to their website / blog in the video description and others add linking within the video, to both their website and other videos from their channel.
Make your videos engaging; YouTube improves the ranking of videos based on the length of time they are watched, as well as the views they have received.
5. Case Study: Bodyform responds to social media comment
This was an extremely quick turnaround from Bodyform (http://www.bodyform.co.uk/) in response to a male commenting on their Facebook page. Even though the response was scripted the tone of the video and honesty made people believe in it. Throughout this video there is a strong use of branding, from her ring tone to the blue water she drinks. Within a matter of days it received over 2 million views and continues to be shared and gain interest.
6. Apply SEO to increase the ranking of your video
As with keyword density within content, the same set of rules apply to YouTube videos. To increase your chances of being chosen to show in Google search results and being seen clearer in YouTube, mention the main target keyword twice in the title. For example Summer Holiday: How to find your perfect summer holiday. The target term should also be within your description, but only once. When using the YouTube tagging options repeat your target term there as well as adding similar terms as you would for SEO.
For example holiday, summer, vacation, beach, and exact match for example “Summer Holiday” “Holiday in the Sun”. When optimising your video for YouTube, add it to the most relevant category – you can only put the video into ONE category.
As with SEO, contact bloggers and ask them to link back to your video, use your video as a response to others on YouTube – this will help build your views and subscribers. The more people that link to your video, the more it will start appearing in search results. Check the links to your video using link: in Google search bar.
Semantic SEO will start to have a stronger play within the optimisation side of your video, the relationship between keyword will strengthen and when signed into your Google + account will build your results based on previous searches. The move of this into YouTube is still to be discussed and kept an eye on.
When adding images to your blog or website optimise the file name of your video; 12345movie will not be as strong as how-to-find-your-perfect-summer-holiday. Unlike images available on a website, the end users cannot see the file name, but as with Google, YouTube will use this in your video’s relevancy to their users search request.
6.1 YouTube Captions
Videos can now be treated in the same way we apply Alt Tags to images on websites explaining why YouTube has now introduced captions. This is beneficial for those who have hearing or visual disabilities and, of course, your SEO strategy. From using the captions, Google will be able in index your video content as well as the title, description and tags.
6.2 How will your video reach out to non-English viewers
With captions, not only can you jump to specific time points within the video but users can translate the video using Google Translate; which translates the captions into the end users language or a selected language of their choice.
As with SEO, if you publish your article onto webpage with a page rank of n/a or 0 it won’t have much authority and unlikely to show very high in search results. This same rule applies to YouTube; if you publish your video on to a newly established channel it will have less authority than the same video published to an existing channel with thousands of views and subscribers.
6.4 When To Publish Your Videos
Keep your videos relevant. Falling under the same rule for SEO, having a website dedicated to one niche topic will gain you higher rankings in search results and provide you with a strong target audience who will be interested in what you have to say. However, having a channel focused on “How to” videos and then sticking a “What I had for breakfast” won’t work. Having the odd video in there may not cause harm but having several videos that are not relevant could have a negative effect through to your other videos, therefore knocking them off high search positions, in both Google and YouTube.
7. YouTube Partner Program: The highs and the lows
The YouTube Partner Program provides creators with resources and opportunities to improve skills, build a fan base, and earn more money. Joining the YouTube Partner Program could benefit your business and online presence through enabling you to reach a worldwide audience, monetise your content, improve your skills and creativity, and collaborate with other users.
One of the most sought after benefits from the program is having the ability to provide a live stream to your subscribers. This is currently being rolled out through non-profit organisations whilst others are being prompted to use Google+ hangouts on air.
YouTube has a Partner Reward program to provide channels that have passed a certain criteria the change to redeem rewards. There are two levels of rewards; channels with over 1 million subscribers and channels with over 100,000 subscribers. For those who join the YouTube Partner Network and wish to leave, it is very easy to do so. Users are asked to opt out of the program which can be done within their YouTube account.
What are the criteria needed to join the programme
- Ensure the program has launched in your country
- Your account is in good order and hasn’t previously been disabled
- You upload original content and is advertiser friendly
- Your video complies with YouTube’s terms of service
- You have reviewed their copyright education materials
Discover the tools and resources available from YouTube for your video content