For many B2B and B2C businesses, YouTube is a fantastic way to demonstrate competitive advantage, educate prospects about a product or service, leverage customer testimonials, or enhance brand image. With 48 hours of video being uploaded to this social media network every minute – that's 8 years of content uploaded every day – hundreds of millions of users and tens of millions of YouTube channels, it's a social media force that can't be ignored.
And why would you – it's free!
Most everyone knows that websites need SEO, but videos are often overlooked. With more and more businesses taking advantage of the medium, it's important to outline steps needed to maximize the effectiveness through proper optimization. Here is a brief overview of those steps:
Optimizing Your Channel
1. Utilize channel description. The channel description acts as the meta description and should include a keyword-rich description.
2. Add inbound links. Additional links to your website and other social media channels should be integrated into the site. While these are "no follow" links they can generate referral traffic, increasing the opportunities to engage with prospects.
3. Include keyword-rich copy and tags. Each section of the profile offers a chance to work important keywords into the profile.
Optimizing Individual Videos
4. Include target keywords in the title and description. Similar to optimizing a web page, your video title and description needs to be optimized. The title should contain a short target keyword phrase, and the description should be 2 to 3 sentences in length with the use of target keyword variations. It's also good to include a URL at the beginning of the description to drive traffic to the website or a specific landing page.
5. Utilize keyword-rich tags. When selecting tags for your video, be sure to use relevant keywords and aim for 5-7 total. Using the right tags ensures your video is associated with other videos that use the same tags, which means your content will appear as a “related video” when people are watching other videos. This all leads to additional views.
6. Work to boost popularity and views. Total views of your video and the number of views in a 24-48 hour period directly relates to the perceived popularity of your video, which is an important factor in how well your video will rank in YouTube search results. Continually work to promote your videos through social media and other channels to maintain a steady level of views.
7. Monitor and secure inbound links/embeds. Similar to the importance of inbound links in traditional SEO, securing inbound links to your video and embedded video placements on other websites (which functions like an inbound link) will help your video rank higher in search results. You can track the number of inbound links and embeds your video has using YouTube’s “Insights” tool. A great way to build links and embeds is to look at the “Statistics and Data” of other similar YouTube videos, which will reveal sites or blogs that have linked to that particular video. It’s possible that if a particular site or blog liked another similar video they may also like yours and want to link to it, so why not ask!
8. Encourage ratings and comments. A video with higher ratings and more comments is another indication of a relevant and interesting video, which plays a factor with how YouTube ranks your video. Encourage your blog readers and avid social media followers to rate and comment on your videos, which are likely to be favorable.
Posted by Meg Hoppe Meg provides creative vision to all client projects and serves as the agency's chief content writer. She has extensive experience writing for a variety of industries, including manufacturing, financial services, and healthcare. Meg started in advertising and has become a thought leader in digital content creation and inbound marketing.