In order to truly succeed on YouTube, you need to approach it differently than other social platforms. Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter revolve around both creating and sharing great content with the goal of creating awareness, engagement, and conversation. (That’s a simple definition, but for the purpose of this argument, it will work for now). It’s about actually socializing.
YouTube celebrated its tenth birthday the other day, almost nine of those years being as a property of Google (GOOG). It would seem like a raging success: Some stars of the medium make significant amounts of money, companies use it as a powerful marketing tool, and Google harvests enormous amounts of user data that become marketing gold. YouTube is the top video site in the world, with more than a billion users and $4 billion in annual revenue.
Today, there are tons of examples of successful, high-profile YouTube marketing campaigns. From Moz and Rand Fishkin’s informative Whiteboard Fridays to Chipotle’s acclaimed series of emotionally powerful animated shorts, there are plenty of brands currently demonstrating just how much potential there is to create value and awareness by promoting great video content on YouTube.
The great thing about sponsorships is that you don’t have to give YouTube a cut. Plus, you can negotiate whatever contracts you want based on impressions and the size of your audience. In most cases, the amount of revenue you generate from sponsorships is substantially more than YouTube ad revenue. (Meanwhile, you can still generate ad revenue. So it’s like having two sources of income from the same video.)
I received a Bachelor's in Business Administration from Worcester State College in 2010. In 2014 I opened an online retail business and currently sell my private label products through Amazon. I designed a website that highlights the features and benefits of the products. The website also has a health and wellness blog for which I regularly create content. Recently, I launched a YouTube channel for which I create and edit my own videos. My strengths include but are not limited to: Optimizing Amazon Titles, Product Descriptions, and Bullet Points Creating Enhanced Brand Content Amazon Back-End Keyword Research Product Research Consulting For Amazon Sellers SEO Social Media Marketing Video Editing I pride myself on my communication skills and my ability to adapt to the ever-changing way business is conducted.
Make your videos with a specific type of person in mind. This is basic advertising 101; identifying your target demographic. Don’t tell me that your demographics are 21 – 55 year old women. This is the shotgun approach that’s too general and vague. Do you talk to a 21 year old girl the same way you’d talk to a 55 year old lady? Of course not. Define your audience and create videos that’s catered to them.
The results reflect YouTube’s struggles to expand its core audience beyond teens and tweens. Many YouTube users treat the site as a video repository to be accessed from links or embedded video players posted elsewhere, rather than visiting YouTube.com daily. Google executives want them to turn on YouTube the way they turn on television, as a habit, where they can expect to find different “channels” of entertainment.
Still, one of the main ways (or easiest) to earn money on YouTube is through YouTube running ads on your videos. Once you get a certain amount of views, you can connect your account to a Google AdSense account, which will allow you to start earning money on your videos, according to USA Today. In order to qualify, you reportedly now need (as of January 2018) 4,000 watch hours in the past 12 months, plus 1,000 subscribers to join the YouTube Partner Program (which will get you ads and therefore cash from your channel).
If you want to make lead generation possible with a YouTube contest, you’re in luck. ShortStack recently released a new contest software template just for YouTube contests. This template allows you to capture lead information just like you would on Facebook or Instagram contests utilizing the software. Users can actually get entries by voting, or by sharing with their friends. You also have the options that come with the rest of ShortStack software, like setting age limits. If you’re going the contest route to boost your strategy and engagement, I recommend testing out the ShortStack templates.
“Additionally, such branding is important for ensuring that your viewers remember the video, which is especially handy when they need to refer someone to it. Even though they might forget the actual content and the name of the video, remembering your branded footage will help direct viewers to your channel.” – Jon Clark, 7 Vital Elements of a Successful YouTube Video, SearchEngineJournal; Twitter: @sejournal
Finally, leverage your YouTube reputation and attract live speaking engagements. If the YouTube channel you produce is focused on a specific niche or audience, do some research about annual conferences or other industry events that have keynote speakers. Then, utilize your YouTube statistics and some of your best clips, to put together a package and pitch to the directors of these events.
For other YouTube creators, ad dollars only go so far, and a significant portion of revenue comes from sponsorships and “affiliate marketing” (when brands offer a commission on any sales or traffic that the creator’s content drives). Affiliates function pretty seamlessly through YouTube; anyone can include links to featured products in their video’s caption, and when audience members click through and buy them, that YouTube channel gets a small kickback. Many YouTubers prefer Amazon’s affiliate program, “Amazon associates,” although there are plenty more to choose from.
Advertisers only pay when someone clicks an ad or watches for 30 seconds. This is why you can’t tie your channel views to dollars. If your video gets ten million views but nobody watches or click the ads, you don’t make any money. This is how I’m able to make $1 per 25 views. Advertisers pay big money to get their ad in front of specific and targeted audience.
“But don’t be fooled into thinking that improving your watch time is as simple as creating longer videos. A 30-second video that people watch from beginning to end will rank better than a 10-minute video that only gets watched for a couple of minutes. In the end, the best way to boost watch time is to produce videos you audience wants to watch.” – Ric Mazereeuw, How Does the youTube Algorithm Work? A Guide to Getting More Views, Hootsuite; Twitter: @hootsuite
From the looks of things, YouTube's top-line growth hasn't been hurt much by worries among some companies -- for example, Cisco Systems (CSCO) , which just announced it's halting its YouTube ad spend -- about the running of their ads against content they find to be inappropriate. It also doesn't appear to have been hurt badly by YouTube's attempts to appease such advertisers by "demonetizing" videos that its algorithms deem unsuitable for running ads against, or the backlash such actions have sparked among affected content creators.
Now that your YouTube channel is up and running, let’s talk about search. Remember how we mentioned that YouTube is the second largest search engine? While creating engaging content is a must, it’s not the only factor for success. There are several things you can do to optimize your videos to rank highly on both YouTube and in Google search results.