Creating a Successful Social Media Strategy Part 5: YouTube

How to use YouTube videos for your business to boost customer connection.

Image courtesy of Pixabay and geralt

Image courtesy of Pixabay and geralt

By all accounts, social media is becoming more and more visually driven: on Facebook, photo posts receive 39% more engagement than average. The explosive growth of sites like Pinterest and Instagram only continue to prove that people are drawn to visually beautiful and creative content. Many businesses have started engaging with their audience in this way, and have begun to see the benefit. But it’s important not to limit our definition of visual content to just photographs and graphics – video is another vital way you can connect to your audience.

YouTube is a social media site that, when used correctly, can powerfully boost your SEO, increase brand exposure, and create a personal connection with your audience. Here are just a few of the reasons why you should use YouTube:

  • SEO. YouTube is the second-largest search engine after Google, and they make it really easy for you to add keywords and phrases to your videos when you upload them.
  • Connection. Videos allow you to literally give your business a name and a face people can connect with. If your company primarily does business online, this can be an especially important benefit to cash in on.
  • Sales. Using a video to illustrate what your product or service does is a powerful selling technique. When Zappos started using video for product descriptions, they saw a 30% increase in sales.
  • Add value. Short videos are a great way to deliver information your audience finds useful. For example, Lowes has an extensive library of short “how-to” videos on their YouTube channel, making their channel a destination for people they hope to convert into customers by providing a free, valuable resource.
  • Customer service. Especially for companies selling products, creating a library of videos showing how to use your product and all its features gives your customers a resource for getting the most out of their purchase.

The thought of recording, editing, and uploading your own video might seem overwhelming, but it’s actually simpler than you think. Without going into too much nitty-gritty detail, here are a few facts you should know about videos on YouTube:

  • Quality matters… but not as much as you think. Most smartphones these days have a camera that can record an adequate video. Making sure your video is well-lit and whoever is filming has a steady hand are the most important quality issues to pay attention to.
  • It should be shorter than you think. In the YouTube world, a “long” video is 3 minutes. Most people will lose interest after about 2 minutes. The more concisely you can communicate your message, the better!
  • It doesn’t have to be perfect. Make sure your video doesn’t have any major mistakes in it, but don’t feel like you have to redo the whole thing after every little mistake. It’s better you actually record and post the video than it is that you waste an inordinate amount of time on a video you never post.
  • You don’t have to be a professional actor. All you have to do is speak clearly enough to be heard. Part of the point of a video is creating that sense of human connection, which acting like a robot will not help with.

One final word of caution: beware of the lure of wanting a “Viral Video.” While getting millions of hits on your video within a few days or weeks would be nice, it’s probably not going to happen. So before you get grand ideas of becoming the next Gangnam, it’s best to set your expectations a little lower and realize that, like most things, it takes time and consistency to build an audience.

For more information about using YouTube for your business, our free Social Media Resource Guide has additional tips and article links.

About Sarah Gill

A talented writer and strategist, Sarah is passionate about connecting people with their unique creative voice so their message can find authentic and powerful expression.