The brands that get the most out of their YouTube channels don’t settle for one-shot deals. They create a schedule for YouTube videos that PR pros can align with their companies’ marketing strategy and social media channels, according to Jay Dolan, senior social media strategist at Capstrat. Many of these brands also have something akin to an editorial calendar for their videos.
- Think of YouTube As More Than a Video Library. For many brands, YouTube is a check box. Unless a video is created as part of an online campaign, it’s uploaded to YouTube and views are considered to be bonus points. While this approach can fill a YouTube channel with content, it fails to put the content to work for the brand.To stand out on YouTube, stop thinking of it as a video repository. Instead, produce video content on a regular basis, design videos to take advantage of YouTube features, such as annotations and transcripts, and think about search engine optimization (SEO).
- Create an Editorial Calendar—And Stick to It. PR pros working in the trenches of social media know the value of a great content calendar. Having a plan of what content is being produced and shared is a necessity with fast-moving social media channels. But many brands simply upload a video when it’s available rather than create a regular cadence for subscribers. Uploading content at regular intervals sets audience expectations, allowing followers to know when you plan to share new videos. This approach also benefits your other social media channels because it provides new content that you can link to regularly, rather than having to adjust to accommodate the odd video.
- Design Videos for YouTube.While many videos work well as standalone content, planning ahead to take advantage of YouTube’s annotations and playlists makes your videos more interactive and improves your chances of building a stronger YouTube audience. End cards can make the difference between having videos that simply are uploads and those that pop on YouTube. These end cards also can provide spots for you to add a voiceover that thanks viewers for watching, urges them to subscribe or leave a comment or directs them to your other videos.
- Measure Your Success. Video views can give you a sense of what is popular on your YouTube channel, but that’s only part of the story. YouTube’s analytics can help measure in-depth results to ensure you’re meeting business objectives. These analytics and the results they provide can and should inform the content and format of future videos.
Learn about the demographics of who is watching your videos and if they align with your target audience. Figure out an average of how long viewers watch each video and where they are exiting.
Use Rich Keywords to Get Your Video Found
No matter what type of videos you decide to share regularly, a planned approach gives you the opportunity to build a rich search description for YouTube. The tie between YouTube and its parent company, Google, plays an important role in how your videos are found. YouTube viewers frequently find videos via search. So, be sure to:
- Title your video with rich keywords. Before you upload the video, make sure the filename of the video matches the title.
- Add a full description to your video, including links to other social media and Web properties.
- Upload a transcript of the video to YouTube, if available.
Source: Jay Dolan, senior social media strategist at Capstrat. The above is an excerpt from PR News’ Social Media Guidebook. To order a copy, please go to prnewsonline.com/prpress
This article originally appeared in the July 20, 2015 issue of PR News. Read more subscriber-only content by becoming a PR News subscriber today.