Cheat Sheet: YouTube for Marketing and PR

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YouTube is the home to most videos ranging from 30 seconds to 15 minutes. Subjects range from crazy cat videos to how to fix a running toilet. Because of its broad subject base, it’s the second-largest search engine in the world, a fact that may have more to do with its connections with Google and Google+ than anything else. The network even launched a kid-friendly app, YouTube Kids.

The People

YouTube boasts over 1 billion unique monthly visitors. According to Social Strand Media, the network is capable of reaching more US adults ages 18-34 than any cable network. The age demographic may be a factor in mobile use; 40 percent of YouTube videos are watched on mobile devices.

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The Challenges

YouTube is on-the-go-video, which means it needs to be optimized for all devices and easily shared or embedded.

The Tips

1. Choose your advertising route. With YouTube, you can advertise with a brand-specific channel, ads embedded in videos, or both.

2. Develop your channel. If you create a brand-specific channel, spend some time personalizing it. Add pertinent contact information and other places to find you.

3. Optimize your videos. Properly categorize your uploaded videos. Add industry keywords in the title, description and keywords box to make them more searchable. Include an optimized transcript of each video to add to its SEO value and link back to your website so that viewers can obtain more information or contact you.

4. Target your ads. Don’t let your ads appear on just any videos; make sure they relate to the videos themselves. For instance, if you sell specialty dog food, you’d want your ads to appear on the silly dog videos and dog show recaps rather than how-to videos about vegan meals or eyeshadow application.

5. Make your content public. YouTube is for sharing, not hiding. If you’re interested in being mobile-friendly, the public status is even more important. Users will abandon your videos for another’s if they can’t easily share them.  And don’t forget to share them in your other social networks.

6. Quality is important. More to the point, audio is important. Users may forgive a shaky camera, but they aren’t going to be as lenient about tinny or crackly audio. Invest in decent audio equipment if you plan to create videos for your brand.

7. Take advantage of YouTube’s Video Editor. You can combine existing videos and images to create a new video; trim clips to custom lengths; add music to your video from a library of approved tracks; and customize clips with special tools and effects.

8. For more information, visit YouTube’s tip page.

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Images: Rego KorosiMIKI Yoshihito (Creative Commons)

Tags : social media

About Brian Conlin

Brian Conlin is a content marketing manager for Cision. A former journalist, he enjoys researching and developing accessible content. When not writing, you will find him watching baseball and college basketball, sampling craft beer and enjoying Baltimore. Find him on Twitter @BrianConlin13.

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