YouTube is one of the most popular social media networks. It is a powerful marketing channel that can make a real difference to your traffic generation and reputation management strategies.
Just think for a moment: YouTube is the only site that is considered both a social media site and a search platform. And even more to that: YouTube is actually the second largest social media network and the second largest search engine in the world.
It may well be the most powerful marketing channel out there, so there’s no neglecting it in your social media strategy.
Many businesses shy away from YouTube marketing because it has become incredibly difficult to get noticed on YouTube and generate any type of exposure.
To help you out, here are three powerful tactics to help you boost your YouTube video views and engagements:
1. Target a well-known YouTuber/influencer
It’s a well-known trick but it still works very well:
- Find a YouTube influencer
- Make a roundup of their videos (i.e. “Influencer’s Funniest Moments”, “Influencers’ Smartest Quotes”, etc.)
- Publish the video, making sure the influencer’s name is in the title
Even if that influencer never engages, it often results in a huge boost of views because YouTube starts suggesting these videos for that influencer’s subscribers.
It may not go viral and it may not work for every influencer (so you may have to try a few) but it’s a great way to work the channel views up towards those 10,000 public overall views that allow you to apply to become a YouTube partner.
These videos are also incredibly easy to put together.
It’s also a nice way to become friends with YouTubers to hopefully get them to create videos for you or get interviewed on your channel, etc.
Buzzsumo is a great way to find those influencers to target in your next campaign. Simply click to the “YouTube” tab and type your target keyword. You can limit results by recency, video length, video category and language:
2. Optimise your video for Google’s video carousels
Google offers a lot of exposure to videos through their SERP element called “video carousels.”
Video carousels are interactive search elements featuring related videos. They take up a lot of SERP real estate, especially if you search from a mobile device:
Those video carousels drive an incredible boost in video views, even for very new channels:
And the best part is, it takes a short amount of time to get your video ranking there. Applying YouTube SEO best practices will help here. All you need is to find a searchable query and apply semantic SEO when writing your video description.
For the first part of the task, I use Serpstat, which shows search volume and “difficulty” (i.e. competitiveness) for each search query in their index. This makes it much easier to pick a search query to target in your video.
Once I know the search query, I run it through Text Optimizer, the semantic analysis tool that identifies related queries and entities around any keyword.
Youtube allows you to enter up to 5,000 characters in the video description field, so you can write a good amount of text to optimise your videos for Google’s carousels.
Adding a timestamped outline of the video would be helpful and useful.
3. Create an animation based on a popular character/star
Ever since I did this video, I’ve been looking for a safer way to create fun animated videos that wouldn’t run into a risk of copyright infringement.
It turns out you can find great animation gigs and voice-over actors, so you just need to put the two together….
I use iMovie (which comes with any Mac) to put voiceover with animation, but there are many more video editors to use. Plus some of those gigs come with voiceover as an upsell, so you may be able to outsource the whole deal.
That being said, if you combine high-quality voiceover with creative animation and, on top of all, a solid script, you can come up with cool videos. And those animations can be re-used in several videos (to justify the cost). There are also a few powerful sources of free video footage you can use in your videos.
For this tactic to really work, create animations targeting currently-hot trends (and hashtags). The good news is, with time, you will be able to create those animations more and more quickly, so soon you will be able to timely publish a video around hot news.
Keep an eye on your YouTube traffic
Finally, if you do everything right, you will not only see more video views, you will also see more clicks to your site.
YouTube is a great traffic-driving medium, provided you put your link in the video description field:
Your video viewers will see the first 150 characters of your video description without having to click More, so be sure to put your link here.
Even a small channel may send you quite a few clicks. In fact, for one of my newer sites, YouTube turned out to be the biggest traffic driver:
To monitor my traffic from any source, I use Finteza because it makes it quite easy to overlay my traffic from any site on my conversion funnel:
Finteza clearly shows you how your traffic from any source engages with your conversion funnels. For example, here it is obvious that while YouTube sends only a fraction of this site’s traffic, it converts much better than all other sources.
There may be many more YouTube promotion tactics, of course. Yet, these three lower-hanging fruit opportunities because they are doable and work pretty quickly. To sum up:
- Create videos targeting YouTube influencers (this will prompt YouTube to suggest you more around the platform)
- Use semantic analysis to optimise your videos for Google’s video carousels
- Use creative animations and possibly celebrity-driven voiceover to create quick videos targeting recent news.
Do you have any other YouTube marketing tactics that have proved to be effective? Share them with us!