So, you’re looking at throwing your hat into the YouTube ring and shaking things up for your business? Setting up a YouTube channel can be an incredibly fun, brand-building exercise for your business and the market is simply huge.
Video traffic is massive; in fact, 300 hours of video are uploaded every minute…which doesn’t sound like it’s a sentence that even makes sense, but wow. YouTube has 1 billion users and frequently reaches more people than cable TV in the US. It can be a pretty integral part of your social media mix.
Creating an awesome YouTube channel isn’t as simple as setting up a slick website – it’ll take a lot of ingenuity and finding your feet. But hey, let’s have a go and look at how you can make your first steps in the YouTube frontier.
1) Create your Channel
Okay, first thing’s first – you need to head over to YouTube, sign in, go to Settings, click Create a new channel, select ‘Use a business or other name’, add your business’ name and then Create.
You’ll be asked to select a category that best describes your business or channel content too. A Google+ page will automatically be created. And you can fill in the About section, which allows you to describe your business and channel, give your audience a bit of insight and link to your other social media channels too.
2) Make your channel look visually appealing
If your channel is plain and unfilled then it won’t look particularly attractive to a new audience. First impressions matter, so using eye-catching visuals and attention-grabbing graphics can make a big difference. This is a way to promote your brand identity and make a statement.
You can add a profile image to make your account recognizable if people are accessing it from your other social media channels and website. Make sure it fits in with the rest of your brand visuals. Your cover photo is really important too and will take up most of your channel page, so make sure it’s a good visual and connects to your identity. It’s worth getting a designer to sort out your banner if you don’t have any good visuals to hand.
3) Research your audience
Try to create content that resonates with your target audience and demographics. Use your data, interactions, and engagement with your audiences on other social media channels and try to work out what type of video content they’d enjoy. Send out some surveys or look for some feedback on the other types of YouTube channels your audience regularly watches.
Produce a fun, informative channel trailer that will quickly get across to people what your channel’s all about and the types of content your brand will be promoting.
4) Uploading Content
Ok, so the easy-ish part is over and now it’s onto the real challenge – creating killer content that your audience will enjoy.
The good news is that if you stay true to your brand identity and concentrate on authenticity, then the chances are that you’ll already have a million and one content ideas without even knowing it.
Think about the content you’ve created before in blog posts and infographics – you can take some of your highest-performing content and repurpose it into a discussion video etc. You can also take inspiration from the mountain of customer queries and inquiries you’ve had and turn them into Q&A or instructional videos.
Behind-the-scenes video content, product demonstrations, exclusive interviews, video tutorials, testimonials – there are so many different ideas that you can try out.
Showing off your brand personality and identity is one of the best benefits of a YouTube channel – it’s a fun format that allows your brand to relax and let its hair down.
5) Optimize your vids
When you’re uploading your videos, you need to make sure you’re optimizing them for search. You can work on the descriptions, tags and titles so people can find your videos easily. Use keywords and terms that will resonate with your audience and the research you’ve done.
Your videos can rank well on YouTube and Google if you optimize your videos correctly.
Make sure you’re promoting your videos across your other social media channels too, so you can bring in your audiences who interact with you on other platforms.
Keep an eye on YouTube Analytics, to see what’s going on with your videos and how people are reacting to them. This will help you to make adaptations and create better content.
6) Keep going
Rome wasn’t built in a day and you really need to invest a lot of time and effort into your YouTube content strategy. Stay consistent and create a content calendar so you can keep on top of your posts and plan your video content.
If you’re regularly churning out video content then you’ll be able to build up a following and a strong community who know that they’ll be receiving frequent content and will be expecting it.
Engage with your audience too, which means replying to comments and interacting with users. You can find out what they like and don’t like so you can improve your videos.
If you’re having trouble getting your videos out there then don’t despair – try investing in YouTube Advertising, so you can target your videos by age group, gender, interest, or location.
A successful YouTube channel takes time and great content to build, but it can be a really useful way to create extra value for your audience. Stick at it and the rewards can be big.
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