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The Ultimate Monthly Checklist for Growing Your YouTube Channel

The Ultimate Monthly Checklist for Growing Your YouTube Channel
26Jun

So, do you feel like an official YouTuber yet? You’ve been consistently filming new videos, are checking your analytics every now and then, and are even sharing your content on your other social media platforms—go you! But let’s not forget about one thing: The work doesn’t stop here. A YouTube channel doesn’t get successful overnight, and it won’t continue to be successful if it’s not given the TLC it needs. So, how can you ensure you’ll keep a steady trend of growth on your channel? By making sure you hit these checkpoints every month:

1. Formulate a new content strategy.
No one watches the same video over and over again forever, so why would you keep your content strategy the same every month? It’s always best to switch things up! But let’s get one thing clear—you shouldn’t switch up your content strategy “just because”. Don’t throw some adorable puppies into your video “just because” it’s popular on YouTube. Think back to your analytics; see what your audience is responding to and how you can get them to keep coming back.

For example, if my company, The Go! Agency, was going to upload a new video, I would consider what my audience is already responding to. If my “3 Steps for Successful Copywriting” video was a hit last month, I might consider breaking that down into an entire series. It all depends on what my audience is engaging with.

Furthermore, when it comes to creating a content strategy, it’s important to actually block out some time where you’ll be able to get creative. Add the exact date and time to your Google calendar, write it down in your notebook, or do whatever else you find will help you remember to come up with a strategy for the month.

2. Curate relevant content.
Remember how I mentioned that it’s a good idea to curate videos from other channels to add to your playlists (so long as they suit your overall brand)? Well, curating this content shouldn’t just be done on a whim—there should be a strategy for how you select videos for each playlist.

First, you’ll need to start by subscribing to other channels that create similar content to yours. From here, you might want to set aside an hour or two at the beginning of each week where you watch a few of these videos and then select the best ones to add to your playlists. Remember not to check this task off of your list too quickly—you’ll want to take your time curating only the best content.

3. Engage with your subscribers.
Your audience doesn’t just want you to talk TO them; they want you to talk WITH them. People want to feel like they are a part of an online community. So, help them experience this! Engage with your subscribers by asking them what video content they want to see next, liking and responding to their comments, and giving them shout-outs in your videos when necessary. The more they feel like they know your brand, the more they’ll want to stick around.

4. Engage with other YouTube channels.
Yes, the main group of people that you want to engage with are the ones watching your videos. However, it’s important to pay attention to what else your audience is watching. What other YouTube channels are they interested in? Whatever those are, make it a point to like their videos and comment with positive feedback. By doing this, their audience members will be more inclined to engage with your channel since it provides similar content.

5. Spy on your competition.
Keep an eye on perfect content! Look at what your competition is doing right, and get inspired to create similar content for your own channel. While you should NEVER copy anyone else’s idea to a T, you should always try to put your own spin on content that has received a lot of engagement.

Also, it’s crucial that you take a look at how your competition is engaging with their audience. How are they responding to comments? What are they doing that’s different from your current strategy?

6. Pre-film enough videos.
Feeling like you’ll soon need a break from content creation? While you never want to film videos to the point of burnout, you also can’t leave your audience hanging. Every month, make it a point to film 3 to 4 extra videos that you know can be uploaded in case you’re unable to create “new” content. Make sure that these videos are evergreen, as you’ll want to be able to post these at any time.

7. Stick to a regular upload schedule.
Do you ever see those YouTubers whose upload schedules are all over the place? If it annoys you, it definitely annoys the rest of their audience. That’s why you need to stick with a regular upload schedule! But don’t just pull days and times out of thin air; remember to look at your analytics and see when your audience responds to videos best.

Do you need more advice on how to continue growing your YouTube channel? Schedule your free consultation with The Go! Agency!

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No Time to Create a YouTube Video? Try This!

No Time to Create a YouTube Video_ Try This!
24Jun

Are you hitting a wall when it comes to producing new video content? This is typical for many businesses. At the end of the day, producing quality videos takes time – and you need to focus on running your business! So what do you do when you don’t have enough time to create regular video content to keep your YouTube channel engaging for your subscribers?

Let me introduce you to YouTube playlists and the secret to curated video content!

What are YouTube playlists and why are they beneficial?
Playlists are a way of organizing videos on your channel around a specific topic, keyword, service, product, and much more – whichever works best for your brand. For example, if you are in charge of a restaurant’s YouTube channel, you might have your videos organized into the following playlists: How-To’s, Today’s Special, Chef’s Kitchen, and Quick Recipe Tips.

While it is optimal to add your own videos to your playlists, you can also curate videos from other YouTube channels.

Just think about it. You share content on your various social media channels (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn) and many times you are sharing articles or content that you found online which is from another source. The reason you share it is that not only will your audience enjoy the content and engage with it, but it also helps you keep up with consistently posting to your social media channels.

My top tip is that when looking for videos to curate and add to your playlists, you make sure that these videos already have a high level of engagement and views. This illustrates there is already a proven audience for the video and it may bring a bit more shine to your own channel. The more regularly that you execute this process, the more alive your channel will look. It is the perfect go-to when you don’t have the time to produce your own original content.

The only catch? While you can easily find videos that look like they are suitable for your playlists at first blush, make sure that you watch them from start to finish. They need to be on brand and have a message that dovetails nicely to your own branded voice. Sometimes even the most seemingly perfect video could have some negatives lurking somewhere in the middle or end.

Ok – let’s get you started!

How do you create a YouTube playlist?
Now that you’re aware of all of the benefits of YouTube playlists, it’s time to learn how to put one together. Here’s the breakdown in 3 easy steps:

1. Plan the perfect playlist and name it!
For example, if I was going to do one for our company, The Go! Agency, as we are a digital marketing agency I may focus on the following playlists: Social Media Tips, Website Design Hacks, Organization Tips, Copywriting Handbook, etc. Naming your YouTube playlist “How-to’s” is a fine start, but it’s just not strong enough. Think of how users would find your videos. What topics would they search for? You need to make sure that your playlist name is keyword-rich. Therefore “How-to’s: Cake Decorating” could be a stronger choice.

2. Seek and find suitable, and proven, content.
It’s time to start filling those playlists. Search YouTube for videos that are suitable for the playlists (new or old). For example, if I am going to add a video to the Copywriting Handbook playlist, I would use the search term “copywriting secrets” or “copywriting tips”. Then I would look through the results and choose the videos with the most engagement/views and watch them. If they fit my brand, I would then click the “add to” button underneath the video, and either add it to an existing playlist, or choose “Create new playlist.” Name your playlist accordingly – and you are ready to go and find your next video!

3. Keep it up kid!
So you have logged into YouTube, curated some videos, added them to playlists (or created new playlists), and you are….eh….done? Nope! You need to do this on a regular basis! I would suggest adding this curation process to your regular marketing schedule and add a specific number of videos to your playlists every week. Only do what you can handle. Be realistic as always. Biting off more than you can chew will definitely cause early burnout!

Curating video content is a great shortcut when it comes to brightening up your YouTube channel. While this does not excuse you from creating your own original content 100%, it gives you a little bit of a buffer to create a more cohesive content mix as well as share content that your audience will be eager to watch and engage with!

Do you still need some extra help when it comes to organizing your YouTube channel? Schedule your free consultation with The Go! Agency!

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The Power of YouTube Advertising

The Power of YouTube Advertising
5Jun

Does your advertising routine feel a little stale?

I find that clients who are only advertising on one platform tend to get pretty sub-par results. Sure, advertising anywhere is much better than no advertising, but it’s definitely worth the investment to expand your efforts every now and then.

I’ve written a lot on the benefits of Facebook ads, but I realized that I haven’t really delved into the power of YouTube advertising. Let’s fix that!

Reaching Your Audience
With over 1 billion users, YouTube is sure to have viewers from your target audience. Obviously you don’t want your local business to market to tweens in Taiwan, which is why YouTube’s targeting options make it easy to get your ad in front of the right audience.

YouTube lets you place your ads based on demographics, location, interests, and viewing device, which gives you a lot of room to get creative. One noteworthy filter is that you can set the times that your ad runs. That means that if my first video ad is getting a lot of traction at 10:00pm and nothing at 6:00am, I know that my next ad needs to run in the evening and not early in the morning. These are the kind of campaign alterations that make YouTube’s targeting so valuable!

And this isn’t even to talk about YouTube’s advanced targeting options. YouTube allows you to create custom affinity audiences, which are audiences made of people who have already shown an interest in your kind of product/service. For example, if you were selling clothes for young women, you’d normally only be able to get as specific as “18-25 year old women making $X per year, etc.” Custom affinity audiences let you zero into the specifics that really make a sale, and you could target that same audience, but this time you could show your ad only to young women who like floral dresses. Yes, it gets that specific, and yes, you should be using it!

Saving Adspend Budget
YouTube is also a great platform for stretching your adspend dollar. While other platforms generally have you pay per click, YouTube only charges you when someone clicks on your ad or watches the entire thing (i.e. doesn’t hit the “skip” button). That means that you’re only paying to put your money in front of people who are engaged with your content and want to see more!

This is especially helpful when it comes to targeting. Yes, YouTube has great targeting options, but getting it 100% right is tricky, especially if you’re not a professional marketer. With these ads, though, even if you accidentally reach a few people who aren’t in your target audience, you won’t end up paying for that view since they’ll just skip your ad and save you the money!

Influencing Buyers
YouTube is one of the most effective platforms for convincing users to make purchases. One YouTube Insights report showed that 66% of beauty product purchasers, 72% of auto-vehicle purchasers, and 62% of smartphone purchasers were influenced by what they saw on YouTube. Why? It helped them “visualize how products fit into their lives.” That’s not something that you can easily replicate on another platform, people!

Compelling copy and engaging visuals are great—nobody is doubting that. But there’s something about seeing a product or service in action for yourself that makes it much more appealing. And sure, other platforms let you advertise with video, but why wouldn’t you skip the middle man and just advertise on the world’s second most popular website?

Add YouTube Ads
I know that nobody is excited by the idea of spending more money, but remember that when YouTube ads are done well, they earn you much more than you spend. So stop waiting! Make a move and use this untapped resource!

Do you need some help planning your YouTube ads? Schedule your free consultation with The Go! Agency!

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The Hidden Value of YouTube Marketing

The Hidden Value of YouTube Marketing
3Jun

I get a lot of questions about Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, etc., but everyone seems strangely quiet on YouTube marketing and I can’t figure out why. It’s the second largest search engine, so why wouldn’t you want to put your brand on there for some easy reach and engagement?

My best guess is that people just don’t realize what a massive impact YouTube can have on their social media marketing, so I’m going to fix that! For all of you who need convincing, here’s why YouTube can add a ton of marketing value to your campaigns!

Building Brand Awareness
Contrary to popular belief, it isn’t just funny content that succeeds on YouTube. Your content has to be engaging, but you can see real results with videos that are informational rather than comedic. That means that how-to videos and other informational content are great ways to build your online following!

Going Viral
YouTube first became famous as the home of viral videos. When a video gets millions of views, it’s a safe bet that YouTube is the platform earning it all of that attention. YouTube also integrates well with sites like Facebook and Instagram, so you can post branded videos then easily promote them across platforms. Directing people to your YouTube video is one of the most effective ways to take advantage of YouTube’s massive audience while utilizing your existing social channels!

Tracking Metrics
While you can track video metrics on Facebook and Instagram, YouTube certainly gives you many more options. Where you can normally only view metrics such as likes, comments, etc., YouTube tracks when people stopped watching your videos, which can be invaluable when looking to improve your online content. That isn’t even to mention the specific demographic information, traffic sources, and a lot more!

Boosting SEO
Since Google bought YouTube in 2006, YouTube has enjoyed a high ranking with Google’s SEO that makes video content on the platform more likely to land on Google’s front page. But this isn’t just about coasting ahead of your competitors—it’s about staying relevant. Projections show that by 2021, 80% of all internet traffic will be video. If you’re not starting now and working out the kinks, you’re going to fall behind!

Saving Marketing Budget
YouTube doesn’t charge a dime to post as many videos as you want—that’s an opportunity worth taking advantage of! Traditional ad campaigns can be costly, but this is a way to get your video content in front of millions without wasting money on boosting your videos. Don’t misunderstand me though. This is not an excuse to treat YouTube like a cheap side project, and the money you save should be going back into increasing your video production quality!

Earning ROI
Don’t think that these just sound good in theory, either. Like any marketing venture, YouTube is only worth it if you can see a positive ROI. Good news: 78% of marketers get good ROI from video marketing. And as a marketer, I can confidently say that the other 22% aren’t doing it right!

Give YouTube the Attention It Deserves
I know it’s a popular opinion that YouTube marketing is optional, but the data just doesn’t support that conclusion. It’s time to take a serious look at what your business stands to gain with YouTube marketing. Make a move now, before your competitors beat you to the punch!

You know why YouTube marketing is valuable, but how do you act on that? We’ll discuss it during your free consultation with The Go! Agency!

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Tips For Social Media Marketing Rookies (Part 1 of 2)

Tips For Social Media Marketing Rookies (Part 1 of 2)
25Jun

No matter how experienced you are with personal social media accounts, business accounts are a different animal. We’re not even talking about social media marketing: most social media platforms have different rules for business accounts. Today we’ll share the best practices for each of the most popular social media networks.

General tips:

  • First and foremost, follow the basic rules for content marketing. That means aim for quality over quantity, provide valuable content for your audience, and stick to a consistent posting schedule. 
  • Sign up for (or convert your personal account into) a business account. This is recommended–and often explicitly required–by every platform. Social media networks usually have different rules for business entities than for personal accounts, and most networks are very strict about keeping business and personal accounts separate. Business accounts often have access to tools and perks that a personal user would never need.
  • Carefully review and follow each platform’s Terms of Service. What one network considers acceptable, another network may find objectionable. You need to make sure that you follow not only the rules for that network, but also its rules specific to business accounts.
  • Your profile matters. Make sure that your profile is completely filled out and contains all the relevant information your consumers might want. Include clear images of your company’s logo. Your branding should guide your profile’s design: colors and fonts should be consistent with your other branding materials!
  • Don’t forget about SEO! The format might be different, but you can still optimize your social media presence for search results! Utilize SEO in your profile’s About section, your posts, and your descriptions. 
  • Take advantage of the platform’s analytical tools. Most social media networks offer analytical tools for free. These tools are not offered to personal or non-commercial users, which is another good reason to sign up for a business account.
  • Engage with your audience! Social media marketing (like all quality content marketing) is about connecting with your customers, so respond to all comments and answer their questions. 
  • Confirm that all of your images adhere to the network’s size restrictions. An infographic that took your team hours to design will be worthless if automatic resizing makes it indecipherable.
  • Your posting schedule should be dictated by your audience. Schedule your posts for whenever your audience is most likely to be online and/or on that site. Different networks have different peak times, as do different demographics. 
  • Tailor your profile and content to each network. Every individual social media platform was created for a specific audience and purpose. You should customize your content, message, and branding for each platform. 

Facebook

  • Make your profile pop! Always include images and your logo whenever possible. Your profile picture should clearly display your logo or brand.
  • The design of your page can drive engagement. Install a Call to Action button on your profile, near your header image. Pin important posts to the top of your page.
  • Reach out to your followers! Surveys and polls are gold for engagement. Include a Call to Action in your posts or descriptions. 
  • Crowdsource your content! Ask followers to share photos or stories that involve your brand (a maker of yoga gear might ask followers to take pictures of themselves wearing the brand while doing yoga in untraditional places, for instance). Are you trying to choose a new design, flavor, or product? Ask your followers for their opinions!
  • Don’t forget about hashtags! These handy tools aren’t just for Twitter and Instagram! Hashtag the relevant keywords in your posts and captions. Don’t go overboard, though: two hashtags should suffice.

YouTube

  • Your content should be current and relevant. You don’t have to jump on every trend, but don’t be the last to join either. Likewise, avoid format trends that don’t apply to your brand. Just as some industries/products/services are suitable for a tutorial video, the same format would not work as easily for other specialities.
  • Titles should be clear and concise. Put keywords before branding in your titles (i.e., the video’s subject matter, then your company’s name). Titles need to clearly describe video content. 
  • Tags still matter, even though you can’t see them. Tags are not visible on the view page, but you can download an extension that reveals them. Remember to list the most important tags first, as the first tags are prioritized in search results.
  • Take advantage of captions and transcriptions! Not only does closed captioning make your videos more convenient and accessible, it improves your SEO rankings! Likewise, including a transcription of the video in the description is another opportunity for SEO. Beware the auto-captioning tool, though: garbled captions will make your brand look clueless. Double check the captions and translations before you post your videos!
  • Descriptions should be short and informative. The first three sentences of your description will be displayed in the search results, so make sure that they include the most relevant information. Mention your value proposition in those sentences. Include a call to action in the description as well.

Pinterest

  • Curate as well as create. Pin things from related brands. This will drive engagement and spread your brand’s message.
  • Use Boards to your advantage! Create boards around your lesser-known products or services. Repin content from your popular boards to your lesser-known boards.
  • SEO still matters. Optimize your descriptions and your “About” section. Use keywords for Board titles. Use descriptive names and alt-text for your pins.
  • People love infographics. Infographics are great everywhere, but Pinners in particular adore this content! Created or curated, make sure that you include a few wherever possible!

As we said earlier, social media marketing is an offshoot of content marketing. If you follow the same general rules for good content marketing, you should see good results. Pinterest is just now receiving recognition for the marketing opportunities it provides, so your brand should definitely take advantage before it’s too late. 

Don’t miss our next blog, which will cover LinkedIn, Instagram, and Twitter!

Need help navigating social media? The Go! Agency is at your service! Visit our site to schedule your free consultation!

 

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YouTube’s Iron Fist: What It Says About Social Media

Youtubes-Iron-Fist-What-It-Says-About-Social-Media-200x300
4Sep

Ever since people realized that they could say whatever they want on the internet, there have been people trying to figure out rules, restrictions, and ultimately, censoring.  Obviously, once “censor” starts to be thrown around, all content creators’ ears perk up. Many creative individuals, whether they are in a business role or not, have found a home on the wild wild web. Whenever a new law or chunk of fine print puts this freedom into question, people become restless. Right now, YouTube has started a new content-related quarrel.

The social media platform and video hosting site, YouTube, and its owner, Google, may have started something they weren’t entirely ready for. Since its founding in 2005, YouTube has not only attracted a massive gathering but also many vloggers or, video bloggers, now earn a living by creating channels of content. YouTube hit one of its stars, Philip DeFranco, right where it hurts, advertising. They warned that certain videos of his breached their rules, and would take away their monetization and advertising features. No ads mean no revenue for Youtubers. Why is all this happening? In YouTube’s fine print, they mention that all content must be “advertiser-friendly.” As you could imagine, this means no excessive vulgarity, nudity, drug use, etc. Understandable, right? But YouTube’s recent crackdown targeted videos that were hardly offensive at all.
DeFranco wasn’t the only popular filmmaker to receive one of these notices. However, YouTube reps clearly stated that this is not a new rule, but rather a crackdown on previously existing conditions. As you could imagine, tensions are a little high in the YouTube world. Beyond who’s wrong or right, there are a few things social media marketers can take away from this:
  1. Advertising is (still) king. If ads were pointless, this conflict would never happen because there would be no professional YouTubers. In fact, YouTube itself would most likely be a sliver of its current size if there were no revenue pumping through the ad channels. Social media marketers – take note! If you ever wonder if your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and even YouTube ads matter, think about this impending struggle between YouTube and YouTuber, which is bound to escalate if this censoring – or “stern enforcement of policies”, if you don’t like that term – continues.
  2. Content creators underestimate platforms. As professionals that utilize the world’s most popular sites on a daily basis, social media professionals may view excessive rules and regulations as obstacles rather than guidelines. That being said, we need to realize that there are real rules with real reciprocations for a variety of reasons and we need to follow them. So, keep your content classy and professional, don’t spam or scam followers in any way, and try to avoid copyrighted material that you don’t own.

  3. Platforms underestimate content creators. There was a time when YouTube was the only option. There were no other video-hosting websites, just as there were very few social media sites. Now, things are different. If DeFranco and other YouTube stars feel so inclined, they could pull out of YouTube and focus on Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, Twitter, and many other sites. This would not go well for Google. I’m not saying that platforms should cater to every whim of the user, or vice versa, but platforms need to know they are actually replaceable by the next best thing.

It will be interesting to see just what happens in this swelling conflict. YouTube may have to loosen the leash. Vloggers may have to dial down the content (which is unlikely to happen). Either way, the internet, as always, is alive and well and full of changes, which professionals need to be ready to adapt to.

What do you think of this new conflict? Comment below!
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