YouTube has become one of the biggest money making platforms for video creators in existence. It has not only launched the careers of many users to the level of celebrity, but some literally make millions on the site. An entirely new era in entertainment has been sparked by this incredible website.
So how easy is it to market YouTube videos effectively to build a popular YouTube channel? Not easy at all.
It is a frustrating fact for many who have been posting videos on YouTube but see little to no outcome. Most users are getting a pretty solid viewership per video in the tens of thousands, but can’t seem to break through. Only a few users effortlessly get views. But they didn’t start out that way. They had to market YouTube videos in such as way so as to build a brand and dedicated audience that subscribe and regularly view their work. They never would have reached that point if they hadn’t broken their backs clawing for views when they were just starting out.
While the actual content strategy plays the major role here, the marketing strategy is of high importance, too. Of course, you only have so many hours in a day. And you don’t want to get so bogged down in promotion that you lag on releasing videos, or impact their quality. But you need a solid YouTube marketing strategy behind your video creation process. What you need is to know how to market YouTube videos in a more effective way.
How To Market YouTube Videos
Learn from Successful YouTube Influencers
I have mixed feelings about closely monitoring video creators and their tactics. After all, you want to stand out and it’s hard to come up with something truly unique after you see something done so freaking well. However, I’ve come to the conclusion that not paying attention to other niche players means missing out on some really effective marketing tactics you could adopt.
Recently I’ve come across a really cool YouTube research solution that saves my time investigating YouTube channels. BirdSong Analytics YouTube feature is a great way to quickly identify best-working practices of any YouTube user. Here’s what their report provides. All you need is to provide any YouTube channel name:
- Their basic channel stats: Their channel age, video sharing frequency, total number of videos, total subscribers and views.
- Their video analysis: Video duration, average number of views, likes and comments, most used words in captions.
- Their video publishing analysis: Which time of the day and day of the week seem to work best for them.
You can also export individual stats for all their videos to play with it using Excel.
Re-Package Video Content
A video doesn’t have to be marketed as a video only. In fact, after putting so much effort into creating a great video, there’s no excuse for not trying to market it further as more content assets.
Make It Short, Share As a GIF
One of my favorite methods to market YouTube videos is by using GIFS. A an animated GIF shows a single part of a scene that viewers might find interesting or funny. You can add captions in order to convey the message more clearly.
Another benefit is that it makes it easier to market YouTube videos and spread them across other networks. LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Reddit, Pinterest … just link to the video in your description. The best use of GIFs is on Tumblr, where the unique format will allow you to post several GIFs in the same post, where they can be read and reblogged in sequence.
Market Your Video as a Podcast
In many cases, it’s possible to extract a voice-over from your video and turn it into a podcast. It always makes sense for interviews, for example (not so much for video reviews though).
Podcasts open up a few highly effective marketing channels including iTunes and SoundCloud. This is exactly what we did with our #JimAndAnn show: We published a video and a few days later followed up with a new iTunes episode to give our audience more venues to subscribe to.
To take this idea even further, you can collect those episodes and then publish them later as one audio-book. Audio books make so much sense these days when commuting to work may take an hour or more. Plus, an audio book is a good way to generate some extra leads if you give away your consolidated podcast collection in exchange for email subscription.
Create Short Video Teasers
One great way to market YouTube videos, is by creating short versions of your video that plays for about 10 seconds (and then loops). This is a great idea for when you start to build a dedicated audience and want to build hype for new videos. You can release little trailers or teasers that can be promoted through mini-video sharing sites like Twitter video, Vine, and Instagram.
You have to be careful with this one. If you aren’t using teasers properly, they can just add an additional step that takes energy from more effective methods of promotion … or cut into your creative time. But with some trial and error you may be able to find what works for you.
More Video Re-packaging Ideas
Consolidate Your YouTube Marketing Efforts Using Your Website
I’ve seen so many genius video campaigns scattered around the Web with no single point of contact. Video marketing is also about branding: Take your brand off YouTube and other social media channels and consolidate it using your own site.
This can be done in various ways:
- You can write a dedicated blog post each time you are releasing a video (You may use the video transcript as the original content to go with the video). That’s what MOZ is doing with their Whiteboard Fridays content (example).
- You can create a separate video directory (And pull new videos to your site automatically). Here are some WordPress themes that will let you build it easily.
- You can use various YouTube widgets that pull recent videos to your blog sidebar.
- You can do all of the above.
Use Other Video Sharing Sites
Other video sharing sites are going to get you less views than you would probably get on YouTube. However, they are going to help you market YouTube videos by spreading your audience, and in a less crowded pool. The two obvious video sharing sites that can boost your video strategy are:
It also may protect your content if your YouTube channel is in trouble. Hopefully this won’t happen, but you can never be sure, since you cannot control YouTube actions. YouTube channels can be blocked, closed and penalized. It’s never a smart idea to put all eggs into one basket.
On that note, it’s a good idea to archive ALL the videos you produce. While hosting them on your site may be too expensive, there are some good cloud options that may work. Create an organized video archive using Dropbox, Flickr, Amazon, etc. cloud hosting solutions. According to SiteGeek, the cheapest, yet most reliable cloud hosting options are Hivelocity and Siteground while PCMag recommends Microsoft Azure, Rackspace and Amazon.
You just want to cover your bases.
Monitor Your YouTue Success to Boost It
One of my most essential and money-saving social media advertising rules is: don’t invest in the ads unless you see some organic traction first.
Don’t promote each of your videos, especially if you produce many. Instead, monitor your channel stats and quickly react by helping the organic boost with some ads. I usually try Facebook ads and StumbleUpon promotion. Those two produce most significant results on a budget.
Cyfe is one way to monitor multiple video channels through one dashboard. It supports YouTube, Vimeo, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and many other social media channels where you can host a video. Plus, you can add any other platform using their custom widget feature.
Set up your YouTube dashboard to monitor daily stats. If you invest in ads for any individual videos, set up a separate widget to monitor that videos progress more closely.
Do you have any tips on how to market YouTube videos?