The biggest name in internet based video is Youtube. Yes, there are an assortment of other sites, but if you have a limited budget and limited time, you want to put your resources to work in the place where they’ll deliver the biggest punch, and that’s Youtube. Until you’ve firmly established a presence there, don’t try to do too much. Don’t dilute your efforts by dividing your attention to other stars in the online video constellation. Focus on the biggest and brightest.
Why Video?Perhaps you’ve not given much thought to using video advertising as a means of driving business to your site. If you haven’t, then you should know that in addition to being the largest, most often visited video repository on the web, Youtube is also the world’s second most popular search engine. The only one that gets more traffic and serves up more search results is Google itself. It’s bigger than Bing and Yahoo combined. There’s just no comparison. Given that, your primary focus for non-video marketing should be Google, and your primary target for video based marketing should, of course, be Youtube.
Like Google, Youtube has developed a robust system for precision targeting, so you get your videos seen by exactly the demographic groups you want to see your creation, and you can exert fine-tuned control over this, so for example, if you want to target single males in Chicago, aged 18-25 who enjoy video games, you can do that. Even better, when you set up an advertising account, you only pay when your video is actually viewed, so you’re not spending money in scatter gun approach in the vain hope that someone might see. Every dollar you spend, you’re spending because your potential customers are actually viewing the ad you have created.
Your videos will be viewable on all sorts of devices, handhelds, smart phones, and of course PC’s, and Youtube sports an impressive array of free tools you can use to see exactly what’s working and how well it’s working.
To get started, you need to do two things. First, of course, you need to create a good marketing video. You can actually get started using completely free tools. Most reasonably equipped computers these days come with built in cameras, and you can buy better quality ones for very little money. There are free tools for video editing and splicing like Windows Movie Maker that will allow you to make reasonably high quality videos with little effort. Of course, if your budget will allow for it, you can hire a professional camera crew and stage sets to make something more advanced, or even rent studio space, although doing either of these things will cause your costs to spike considerably. When venturing into the world of video marketing for the first time, your best bet is to start small, produce something with high production values that delivers your message in a powerful, impactful way, and put it out there.
The second thing you need is your own Youtube channel so you can begin to build a following. Note that in this regard, Youtube marketing is no different than any other social media marketing. Facebook has fans, Youtube has followers. They amount to the same way, and you build your fan/follower base in the same way. By regularly providing compelling content that pushes your brand. The same basic principles that work when you market on Google and Facebook are applicable to Youtube, it’s just that the ecosystem and format is different.
Video is the future of the internet. As bandwidth continues to increase, it will become more and more commonplace. If you’re not using video marketing extensively already, you should be. There’s a bit more of a learning curve here, and the farther along that curve you are, the more powerful a strategic advantage you’ll have over your competition.