Why Are Many South African Businesses Ignoring YouTube?
One of our services is flying off the shelves: SEO. Every other client is asking us to Search Engine Optimise their websites so they rank in Google on page one. Why is it then that the second largest search engine in the world is being ignored?
Why Are Businesses Ignoring YouTube?
I know what it’s like; when you don’t understand something you ignore it and hope it goes away. I think this might be the reason most businesses are ignoring YouTube. Another reason might simply be that they don’t know of the massive value that lies untapped in this visual online behemoth.
Here are a few reasons why you need to take notice of YouTube.
People Don’t Read
Many people are averse to reading and prefer instead to watch a short, informative video instead of wading through pages of tiny text. Think about it, most websites are comprised of text and images: and pretty poorly at that. Video basically gives your visitors a chance to ‘meet’ you face to face and engage with your brand without leaving their couch. This reduces their risk, reduces the time spent trawling through your site to find what they’re looking for and makes their lives easier.
People Want to be Entertained
If your brand adds value to your customers’ lives through entertainment or education, then YouTube is the perfect channel for you. Many people spend hours surfing YouTube for entertaining or interesting content and it’s often the first place your customers go to for ‘how-to’ videos when they’re stuck with a task. Help people while away their time by engaging with your brand – nothing wrong with that.
Who Owns YouTube?
Another benefit to using YouTube is that it will improve your search engine rankings (SEO) as it’s owned by Google. That means that Google sees the number of people engaging with your brand across all your various channels. The more customers who love your content, the higher you’ll rank in Google. Simple. Google is happy when your customers are engaged and spend a long time on your brand and rewards you by placing your website on page one.
Get More Customers
YouTube is another channel for you to use to widen your footprint in the market place. It allows you to pick up followers who don’t know about your brand and to reach potential customers who ordinarily wouldn’t engage with you on your traditional channels. Subscribers to your channel eagerly await your next video installment, so don’t leave them hanging!
By allowing advertising to be displayed over your YouTube channel, you also have the opportunity to make extra income on the side. Nice.
Every business who is taking advantage of these trends is potentially exposing their business to thousands of new visitors every month.
So now that I’ve convinced you to use YouTube, what are the steps involved to getting your first video up?
1. Create a Channel
It’s easy enough, simply read this short ‘how do I create a channel in YouTube’ from the chaps at YouTube and follow their simple instructions. Within a few minutes you’ll have your own channel that you can dress up nicely in your brand’s look and feel and link your website and social media to it. You will need a Gmail account though.
2. Create Videos
This is self-explanatory and involves creating your own original videos and uploading them to YouTube. We can create a full blown TV production quality video for you for under R20,000 or a basic intro video from R2,500. Even better, you can simply pick up your smartphone, take a video and upload it to YouTube yourself, for free. Download YouTube Capture onto your phone or tablet from the app store and it’s even easier.
You should then place this video on your website’s home page, thus making your website more engaging and increasing sales conversions (up to 133%) from your website.
3. Curate Videos
Google wants you to help sort out the billions of videos that people have loaded online. They are begging you to act as a librarian for them and cherry pick the videos you like the most, add them to your channel and share them with your subscriber base.
Think of yourself as a curator in an art gallery. You didn’t paint any of the artworks yourself, you just found them and are displaying them for people who share a similar taste in art. It’s the same with your channel. Don’t limit yourself to only unique content unless you have a lot of time or money to spend generating new content. Find great content and build a valuable, engaging platform for your followers.
Check out http://www.youtube.com/user/TheYoungTurks for an example of a channel that started out purely curating other people’s videos.
More followers equals more sales or at least more revenue from advertising on your channel.
4. Viral Videos
The holy grail of YouTube videos is a video that goes viral. This is what every video aspires to achieve but very few do strike the funny bone of millions of people or resonate with people’s hearts and encourage sharing, which is what makes a video spread like a tropical disease.
Here are a few funny examples of great viral videos:
Wrecking Ball, Gagnum Style, Five-People-one-guitar are all examples of videos that clocked millions of views within the first few weeks of going live.
5. Create an Advert for YouTube
Television advertising is dead. Long live YouTube adverts. Why pay millions of Rands or Dollars to show your advert to views who are going to fast forward it in order to get to their TV programme? Rather create an advert on YouTube and share it with your subscribers and other social media channels, and let the web work its magic?
Here are a few examples of made-for-YouTube adverts that went viral.
Yes, most of these are quirky and humorous, that doesn’t mean you have to try to turn your legal and accounting firm into a viral meme. Stick to what your customers think is valuable content and you can’t go wrong.
I hope I’ve convinced you into seeing the value of this neglected channel. Nothing should stop you from creating your first video, not even yourself.
Dylan Kohlstädt is the founder and Account Director of Shift ONE: outsource marketing for entrepreneurs. Dylan is an online marketing specialist who is passionate about the user’s experience and about helping entrepreneurs and start ups succeed.
Dylan has 10 years marketing management experience in insurance, financial and property industries plus six years hands-on experience in online marketing involving web, mobile, SEO, CRM and Social Marketing and is considered a subject matter expert on all things digital.
She has extensive local and international experience (South Africa, UK and Australia), has managed global and national brands and is experienced in managing multiple product ranges in multiple languages and countries.
Dylan also has an MBA through UNISA SBL.
You can reach Dylan at:
Cell: 0741 395265